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Forum Post: National Public Radio alters article post-hoc & refuses to let #occupy leader advertise or join

Posted 1 year ago on Oct. 10, 2017, 11:58 a.m. EST by skiaspen50 (27)
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Breaking (Aspen): The leader of Occupy Aspen, Lee Mulcahy, accused the local affiliate of National Public Radio of altering an article post-hoc on the conflict of interest of the private attorney who represents city of Aspen housing (APCHA). Mulcahy stated, "During the investigation of Tom Smith by the state Supreme Court for conflict of interest and other issues, Aspen Public Radio (APR) removed audio that implicated Mr. Smith's dishonesty. APR's audio portion contained a statement where Mr. Smith promised to pay the town of Basalt back for bilking us citizens. He never did. And to top if off, APR revised the article to remove that very important fact. In essence, at a critical time, APR revised their journalism so it appeared that Mr. Smith didn't lie. This is concerning."

Attorney Mary Kenyon stated, ""He (Tom Smith) billed the town for personally representing Jacque and Pam," Kenyon alleged. "Then Aspen Public Radio interviewed him and asked if he didn't think that was a conflict of interest. During that interview, he issued what amounted to a mea culpa and promised to pay the town back the money he was paid. He has never done that."

Mr. Smith, also the private attorney of the town of Basalt, was later cleared because no employee for the Town of Basalt would testify against him.

The radio station's news manager Carolyn Sackariason later restored the article to its original content.

Glenn Greenwald writes, "One of the principal institutions devoted to monitoring and checking abuse of state power is the political media. The theory of a 'fourth estate' is to ensure government transparency and provide a check on overreach.... But that check is only effective if journalist act adversarially to those who wield political power. Instead, the US media has frequently abdicated this role, being subservient to the government's interests, even amplifyng, rather than scrutinizing, its messages and carrying out its dirty work."

Lee Mulcahy is considered controversial. He was formerly one of Aspen's most requested ski and snowboard instructors but was fired for attempting to unionize the employees of Aspen Skiing where he was an employee for 16 years. Later, he was expelled from the Aspen Institute for speaking truth to power and predicting revolution but the ban went to the Colorado Supreme Court and Mulcahy won. He is an internationally exhibited artist. Currently, the City of Aspen is attempting to evict him from the house his family built with their own hands.

After his accusation, Aspen Public Radio has refused to allow the leader of Occupy Aspen to advertise as an artist and refused his $2500.00 member donation.

Neither Aspen Public Radio's executive director or its news director Carolyn Sachariason has returned emails or phone calls for comment.

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[-] 1 points by skiaspen50 (27) 8 months ago

Additional update: Tom Smith resigns as Basalt town attorney because ‘it’s time for a change’ Scott Condon March 15, 2018 Share Tweet Comments (0)

Basalt will seek a town attorney for the first time since April 2005 after Tom Smith resigned Tuesday night.

Smith said he submitted his letter of resignation, effective April 1, to the council as they prepared to go into a closed, executive session to evaluate his performance.

"It's just time for a change for me. I've been doing it for 13 years," Smith said Wednesday. "As far as I'm concerned, it was amicable."

The council started Smith's performance evaluation in a closed session Feb. 27. The board was scheduled to continue the evaluation Tuesday in a closed session. Smith said he never did discuss his performance with the board.

"It was moot when I handed them my resignation," he said.

Smith never had a contract and worked as an independent contractor rather than a member of the town staff. That's not unusual for small-town governments. Basalt has relied on outside counsel for decades.

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The board said for years it was going to conduct a performance review but kept putting it off until last month. Town Manager Ryan Mahoney said the town will put out a request for proposals for an attorney, possibly as soon as next week.

Smith was selected from 17 applicants for the position in 2005. The council at that time interviewed the top three candidates.

Smith said he offered to assist the town through the transition. The timing is good for a change, he said, because there are no outstanding cases where Smith is representing the town and no major land-use reviews underway.

Smith said he will continue to practice law from his Basalt office and he will continue to represent the Aspen-Pitkin County Housing Authority. He graduated from Notre Dame in 1970 and from the University of Colorado law school in 1974. He started his legal career with the Delaware Attorney General's Office in 1974, focusing on environmental law. He joined the Colorado Attorney General's Office in the late 1970s. Smith learned that the Pitkin County Attorney's Office was open in 1983 and earned the appointment. He stayed there until 1990 when he went into private practice.

In the 1980s, the Pitkin County Attorney's Office handled legal matters for the Aspen-Pitkin County Housing Authority. When Smith left the county's employment, the housing authority asked him to stay on as attorney. He has remained in that role for 35 years.

Smith said he has no intention of retiring from law.

[-] 1 points by skiaspen50 (27) 1 year ago

Update: The news director of Aspen Public Radio (APR) resigned last week. In an email today, the Executive Director of National Public Radio's affiliate in Aspen stated APR will not comment on personnel matters and is not publishing a statement.