Martin O’Malley was Mayor of Baltimore 1999-2007
Then Governor of Maryland from 2007-2015,i.e. less than 90 days ago.
Until a week ago most politically connected Americans knew Maryland as being a deep-blue State and Martin O’Malley as the only Progressive Democrat alternative to Hillary Clinton (Bernie S not being a Democrat, at least not yet). At what point, if ever does what seems to be some long-standing disfunctions in Baltimore policing begin to reflect back on O’Malley?
Baltimore is a literally Hot Topic tonight in a way that it wasn’t before. Does Martin need to fear the coals? Open Political Thread.
From that Wiki article
During his first mayoral campaign, O’Malley focused on a message of reducing crime. In his first year in office, O’Malley adopted a statistics-based tracking system called CitiStat, modeled after Compstat, a crime management program first employed in the mid-1990s in New York City. The system logged every call for service into a database for analysis. The Washington Post wrote in 2006 that Baltimore’s “homicide rate remains stubbornly high and its public school test scores disappointingly low. But CitiStat has saved an estimated $350 million and helped generate the city’s first budget surplus in years.” In 2004, CitiStat accountability tool won Harvard University’s “Innovations in American Government” award. The system garnered interest from Washington, D.C. Mayor Adrian Fenty as well as crime officials from Britain.”
I have some personal experience with the adoption of CitiStat techniques in local largish-scale government. Bad experience. Will leave it at that. Just note that CitiStat was deliberately modeled on NYC’s CompStat which fueled the whole Stop and Frisk/Hit the Number system that ruled NYPD and worked so well (?)
Not about O’Malley , but this statement by an Orioles exec did the city proud , IMO :
Bruce, we definitely want to hear of your bad experience (real street experience — a.k.a., gossip :-]). As a native NYer I probably followed the hellish history there closer — why I left in 1980 — I don’t think Comstat fueled stop and frisk. I think Bloomberg’s ethnic cleansing might be a better take (maybe just pique) — certainly Bloomberg’s (and Giuliani’s) at the least unconscious racism.
After crime in NY dropped 4X, stops went up 7X = 28X as many stops per reported crime. What’s that supposed to accomplish? That’s not going to end the Great Wage Depression that has the minimum wage (for one example) so low that has normal/not-normally-criminal people en masse joining drug selling street gangs to make a living (100,000 out my estimate 200,000 Chicago gang age males).
Marko, I mostly disagree with Baltimore sports-radio broadcaster Brett Hollander on his core reason for the unemployment and poverty. It is jobs sent overseas — it is pay that is so low for the jobs here that American born workers wont go to work for it. THE FEDERAL MINIMUM WAGE IS NOW SEVERAL DOLLALRS BELOW WHAT IT WAS IN 1968!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Why isn’t Obama shouting that from the roof tops every day, all day until people catch on to what’s happening. Would a 1918 minimum wage if it existed not be expected to pay a lot less than 1968’s $10.75 (of 1956’s, $8.75)? Much lower productivity than 1968’s. Shrinking minimum wage while per capita income doubles just the tip of the low pay iceberg.
Top 1% now take 25% of overall income thanks to American democracy’s core pathology, de-unionization, up from 8% in 1970. $15 min wage merely shift 3.5% to the bottom 45% — just to get the idea how much there is to shift back to everybody else. Lots of money to claw back — AND DON’T FORGET PER CAPITA INCOME GOES UP ANOTHER 20% EVERY TEN YEARS — more and more to share in the (if unionized) future.
Should be plenty to go around JUST DOING THE JOBS WE ARE DOING NOW — and more in the future.
Way back? Got to make it a state crime in as many states as possible (WA, OR, CA, NV likely first adopters?) punishable by a year in jail to fire anyone trying to organize their workplace for a union (bonus: makes busting federal RICO prosecutable). Firing IS illegal under NLRB administrative law and workers theoretically can be reinstated with back pay (only to be fired again for another reason at which point they give up). We have the highest incarceration rate in the world from everything from selling pot to rigging the outcome of a sporting event. Rigging the labor market into the slave market is wrecking our society (not just ghettos which it is wreaking).
Making union busting a crime in at least some states will get the national discussion on the right track — it is do that or do nothing. Time to start shouting that from the roof tops.
Denis CompStat and CitiStat and the versions that spread across the country including to Snohomish County (Wa) Government were all built around one simple principle: Hit Your Number. Whatever that number happened to be: crime stops, tickets issued, test score aggregate targets met, o (in my case) net time for building permit issuance. And it really mattered less whether the larger missions of public safety, effective education, or sustainable housing were met than whether you hit the number..
To your point: Under Stop and Frisk did the NYPD send out rookies with explicit numeric targets? We know the answer to that. And I would bet my last dollar that evaluations for Sergeants and Patrol Lieutenants were largely based on them insuring that their troops hit those target.
So while I am with you on every other part of your rant (as proud promoter of MJ.ABW – More Jobs. At Better Wages) I have to disagree that there was no connection between CompStat and Stop and Frisk. Indeed if anything your numbers support that link.
Hi guys, been awhile. O’Malley should worry for very different reasons, which I won’t go into right now.
Baltimore’s troubles date back to the end of WWII, and the 1968 riots. At the end of WWII, African Americans had war jobs and became middle class in places like Baltimore and Watts. When the war ended those jobs started to dissipate and poorer classes, which flocked to war job areas like Baltimore or Watts, began to emerge. Then fast forward to 1968, when the riots occurred. The tax base fled for the suburbs, leaving Baltimore without money to provide basic services well. It took decades (2012) before Baltimore’s population grew, and things got better, and tax revenues flowing again. Oddly, I credit the real estate bubble which fixed a lot of stuff in Baltimore with a flood of credit fueled money – construction jobs etc, and during that time crime went down substantially. The city is much more pleasant than 1994 when i moved here. The city was downright scary back then. Last night was a high risk of happening event, and government needs to figure out how to police better- balancing the desire to not have violent crime, and not have people die in police situations.
So this is very much about economics, the inability for the government to provide a decent economic floor, and how the government carries out vital services such as policing.
Then there are things like TPP, which may further retard things for poorer classes – and all of us.
Watch the documentary Crips in Bloods Made in America. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0479044/
what does “o net time for building permit issuance” mean?
you didn’t get any jail time for issuing building permits? or
you were expected to issue building permits in zero (net?) time?
since this thread is supposed to be about O’Malley’s responsibility for the recent killing in custody, i’d have to ask those who think he may have had some to be more explicit about the causal linkage.
i heard o’malley on the radio the other day and was thrilled. but i have been fooled by a pretty face before. often.
for what it’s worth, i received the tender attention of the Los Angeles Police (To Protect and Serve) many times as a teenager… white. I didn’t get killed (maybe the white helped) but I also learned you treat police with the same respect you treat police dogs. They are trained to respond violently. I don’t like that. But I am not sure how you change that when you have “high crime area” situations.
Not sure how many people I have offended with this comment. Just trying to provoke a more detailed discussion.
one other thought. i don’t like “get the numbers” policing. but you need to realize that the people who require “the numbers” don’t care what I think. they don’t care what you think. they don’t care about your life.
they only care about solving “their” problem… which is “reducing crime” either for the votes or for the rich people they care about (different meaning of care).
if “get the numbers” works, they won’t worry about the petty injustices and occasional police killings.
and just to stir up some hate and disconnect: i don’t believe it is a “race” problem. though it has roots in a race problem. thing is, if white slavery had been as profitable as black slavery the slave traders would have used white slaves and the owners and population in general would have found rationalizations for it. until “free soilers” saw that slavery (white) was hurting them economically. then the slaves would have been freed (god willing and the creek don’t rise) and the new “free” labor would have been fed into the northern labor market and ultimately “inner cities” where crime would have flourished.
i think if you, even you, with all your enlightened lack of race prejudice took a job as a cop in the inner city, you would find yourself as much a racist as they are within six months.
for those who can’t understand this was not a racist statement, but an observation about “human” behavior, i can only say that your human response was predictable. i thought i’d risk it anyway.
it has been that way forever. and neither you nor I can do anything about it..
Bruce-Did you read Judis’ article about the 2014 elections? Some interesting insights from Maryland voters about O’Malley and Brown.
No Little John I didn’t. if I run across it I will. I was just struck with the thought that a lot of Progressives, including me, were kind of struck with O’Malley without really knowing much about him other than “leftish” with good talking points. But if he runs he will have to run on the specifics of his record as Governor of Maryland and to some extent on his previous record as Mayor.. And for such things as not having enough coat tales to get his Lieutenant Governor elected in his place. Turning a deep Blue State Purplish is maybe not the star piece of a Dem politicians CV.
Coberly that ‘o’ was not a typo for ‘0’ but instead a mistake for ‘or’.
As for this, well it is unfortunately another case of your tendency to overread and so ascribe motives:
“since this thread is supposed to be about O’Malley’s responsibility for the recent killing in custody, i’d have to ask those who think he may have had some to be more explicit about the causal linkage.”
You put too much casual weight for the specific death, or rather ascribe that to me. I don’t think O’Malley broke Gray’s neck anymore than I think that Rudy Giuliani personally put a chokehold on Eric Garner. What I do think is perfectly plausible is that a cult of management by numbers led police forces to encourage a culture of aggressive policing to keep those numbers up. Particularly in light of the quote from the Wiki article on O’Malley:
“During his first mayoral campaign, O’Malley focused on a message of reducing crime. In his first year in office, O’Malley adopted a statistics-based tracking system called CitiStat, modeled after Compstat, a crime management program first employed in the mid-1990s in New York City.”
This is not to say that ‘tough on crime’ implies that O’Malley gathered his public safety chiefs together like some 50’s Southern Sherrif (or a modern Joe Arpaio) and said “I want to see some of these boys heads strummmmmed!”. On the other hand a liberal ‘tough on crime’ guy has to be held responsible for the police culture his antiseptic number management program translated to when taken to the streets. Without necessarily putting him into the dock alongside the street officers who actually performed the specific incident.
I am afraid you were overreading my comment. I did not suppose you were alleging that O’Malley broke that boys neck, or even specifically condoned policies that led to it.
I would hope for a more complete and credible case that “by the numbers” policing led to it. I would refer to the rest of my comment which suggested that policing any “inner city” (not necessarily black) will lead to incidences like this. Doesn’t mean I want to exonerate the police, or even O’Malley. Some prosecutions of police might,or might not, lead to a better attitude by the cops and even a better attitude by the citizens. I suspect it wouldn’t (for reasons given but under-
read) that it wouldn’t, but I’d be glad to see it tried.
I take the “o” for “or” to mean my second guess about your problem with by the numbers was correct.
Perhaps a better case for “get the numbers” leading to this kid getting his neck broken would be a comparison of places where “get the numbers” was the policy compared to places where it wasn’t, controlling for size, poverty, and all that jazz. I would even accept anecdotal evidence from the people of Baltimore that “since O’Malley started that policy, the police have been making things worse.”
But just left to stand nakedly that X therefore Y is, well, not convincing. It’s the sort of logic that leads to lynching. Maybe the Dem’s need to start lynching their own promising candidates for being weak on highly emotional issues that really have nothing to do with the fundamental problems. [hint: the banks.]
and let the record show
the first use of what has come to be called “ad hominem” was not by me.
and the egregious “reading in” to what I wrote certainly looked a lot like was I was being accused of.
Coberly here is a coherent case. Not necessarily endorsed by me in all its specifics.
Combination of Broken Window policing and CompStats in New York leads to Stop and Frisk and No Tolerance for such things as sales of ‘Loosies’. Police supervisors at the district and precinct level respond by issuing quotas of stops and arrests to patrol officers to meet CompStat targets/mandates. End result Eric Garner choked to death.
Admiration of CompStats by liberal politician Martin O’Malley has his campaign for Mayor rely on a combination of ‘Tough on Crime’ and city wide reliance on a version of CompStats called CitiStat. This leads (via the same process as NYC) into a series of excessive force settlements in Baltimore during O’Malley’s term as mayor, continuing into his time as Governor. Residual effects of this particular police regime, despite certain policy reactions to the cases decided against the City, result in police patrol protocols that agressively target heinous activilities like “running while black in a high crime area after making eye contact with police”.
I don’t know enough about Baltimore over the last sixteen years to know whether O’Malley’s embrace of CitiStats had the same TEMPORAL relation to deaths on City streets that I see between the imposition of a combo of Broken Window policing and CompStat in NYC and the resultant murder of ‘Loosie Seller’ Eric Garner. But I think it is a worthwhile question to ask. Sorry it didn’t meet your standards.
Please Dale, acting the victim doesn’t work well for you.
“and the egregious “reading in” to what I wrote certainly looked a lot like was I was being accused of.”
Let’s break down your initial comment that led to my reaction:
“what does “o net time for building permit issuance” mean?
you didn’t get any jail time for issuing building permits? or
you were expected to issue building permits in zero (net?) time?”
Both halves of this opposition are ridiculous strawmen. You are claiming that the only two readings possible are:
“not being jailed for issuing building permits” which is ridiculous on its face, OR
“issuing all building permits over the counter” which implies on government review at all and instead some pure licensing fee system
Since I cannot believe you actually believe I was in a job that entailed either I read this as the equivalent of trolling. At which point, all pained by my ‘egregious’ attack, you defend yourself by claiming .
“I take the “o” for “or” to mean my second guess about your problem with by the numbers was correct.”
That makes no sense at all!!!. Because once you replace “or” or “0” you lose all sense of “net zero”. Which then makes your second guess totally null both in both language and logic. What was real world ridiculous doubles down by being logically vacuous.
None of which prevents you from feeling like a unjustly whipped puppy.
Oh sorry!! That is ME projecting feelings and opinions on YOU.
why yes it is. as is your whole comment.
i took “o” to be “zero” and asked what it meant, giving two alternatives, not excluding the possibility of others. your clarification left the latter alternative as essentially “the” explanation. i would not suppose that even the permits division would insist on “zero time,” but figured that was obvious enough to allow “zero time” to stand for “less time than it takes” or something like that. you chose to read something malicious into what i said.
as for your “coherent case,” it is definitely a step in the right direction, if substantiated. i wonder about the use of “end result…” but the rest of your “case” could lead to that conclusion if the evidence is there. that remains to be seen.
as for me being “the victim”, yes, i am sorry to say, i have felt the victim of several people on angry bear who seem to take any exception to anything they say as an excuse for a personal vendetta.
i’d show you my hurt paw, but i think i’ll just show you your gratuitous “it is unfortunately another case of your tendency to overread and so ascribe motives…”
i’d submit the text to any panel of psychiatrist to decide who was doing the overreading and ascribing motives. projection anyone?
Yeah Bruce. Hillary is probably jumping out of her skin in joyous celebration.
She should be, Little John. I’ve soured on O’Malley after reading a long article in the Washington Post a couple of days ago about his policing innovations–such as arresting teenagers for loitering and for trivial littering. What a great idea! I’m, suffice it to say, no Hillary Clinton fan, so me ditching my support for the only viable alternative to her is a good indicator, probably.
Another Giuliani who probably did similar.
In this interview , John Simon ( of “The Wire” fame ) has some harsh words for O’Malley re : crime and policing in Baltimore during his tenure as Mayor :
He suggests that a lot of the abuse by police ( often black-on-black ) is class- or power-related rather than racial. He comes down hard on O’Malley , but says he’d still probably vote for him , all things considered.
abuse is class or power based.
who’d a thunk it.
i started commenting on this thread thinking that the case for blaming o’malley was not well formed. since then i have heard from… oddly not the people here making the case… some things that would keep me from voting for him, as if that mattered… if they were true. i expect politicians to lie about everything, so i would have a hard time balancing what he says with what he did… if he did it.
still, “mayor from 1999 to 2007….” that’s eight years ago. do we ever have to start taking responsibility for ourselves?
“The drug war began it, certainly, but the stake through the heart of police procedure in Baltimore was Martin O’Malley3. He destroyed police work in some real respects. Whatever was left of it when he took over the police department, if there were two bricks together that were the suggestion of an edifice that you could have called meaningful police work, he found a way to pull them apart.”
“”But to be honest, what happened under his watch as Baltimore’s mayor was that he wanted to be governor. And at a certain point, with the crime rate high and with his promises of a reduced crime rate on the line, he put no faith in real policing.
Originally, early in his tenure, O’Malley brought Ed Norris in as commissioner and Ed knew his business. He’d been a criminal investigator and commander in New York and he knew police work. And so, for a time, real crime suppression and good retroactive investigation was emphasized, and for the Baltimore department, it was kind of like a fat man going on a diet. Just leave the French fries on the plate and you lose the first ten pounds. The initial crime reductions in Baltimore under O’Malley were legit and O’Malley deserved some credit.
But that wasn’t enough. O’Malley needed to show crime reduction stats that were not only improbable, but unsustainable without manipulation. And so there were people from City Hall who walked over Norris and made it clear to the district commanders that crime was going to fall by some astonishing rates. Eventually, Norris got fed up with the interference from City Hall and walked, and then more malleable police commissioners followed, until indeed, the crime rate fell dramatically. On paper.”
Hmmm!! Stats!! CitiStats! And it is not like O’Malley went far away or lost all jurisdiction over Baltimore when he moved into the Statehouse up the road in Annapolis.
Some longtime critics of O’Malley’s policies—from local activists, former police officers, and Baltimore Sun reporter turned The Wire creator David Simon—are using the riots to make their case on a national stage. During O’Malley’s campaign for mayor critics said the zero-tolerance policing tactics he was proposing—wherein police enforce minor crimes to prevent repeat offenders—would lead to more cases of police brutality. O’Malley argued that while brutality is a problem in every police department, he would have “zero tolerance for police misconduct” as well.
Stephen Kearney, who worked as O’Malley’s director of policy and communications, said in an interview that while several factors contributed to a drop Baltimore’s drop in crime “government has a responsibility to make a difference where it can, and during [O’Malley’s] administration that included better policing, but also policing the police, increasing drug treatment, and making sure there’s better opportunity for kids. And all those factors worked together in Baltimore’s crime reduction.”
“There was a great demand in Baltimore in 1999 to do something about conditions that people did not want to live with and could not live with,” Kearney said. “At the time there was an increase in arrests in Baltimore and many other cities as police and communities tackled these problems. And as violent crime was reduced arrests also declined.”
Critics have argued that the city’s drop in violent crime was part of a nationwide trend, and instead O’Malley’s policies led to an increase in unlawful arrests.
In 2006 the Maryland branch of the ACLU and the NAACP sued the Baltimore Police Department for allegedly arresting thousands of citizens without probable cause. According to the suit, nearly 30 percent of individuals arrested without warrants in 2005 weren’t prosecuted. That year, there were more than 100,000 arrests in a city of 640,000. In 2010 the city settled for $870,000 and the police department committed to a series of reforms.
I would be remiss if i did not observe that you are now making a much better case than that which i faulted earlier.
let me give you a couple of other thoughts to address
i was a teenager one, in fairly constant trouble with the police. I probably littered and loitered, and would not have liked being arrested for that. Now that I am old and own a little property on a street i like to keep clean, I am not so charmed by teenagers who loiter and litter. I don’t think I would like to see them arrested, but i might like to take a stick and make them pick up their litter. Don’t know if you can see my point of view, but would be glad to see a solution to “the problem” that does not involve either beating up kids or letting the kids beat me up.
second.. “inner cities” would be a crime problem whether the residents were white or black. the problem is hopeless poverty and that is aggravated by the fear of those who “have” at least something that the “have nots” will take it away from them. those “haves” dont have to be rich, they just have to be a step removed from hopeless poverty themselves. would be interested in a creative solution to that problem. i am convinced that the most non-racist person in the world would, if made a policeman in the inner city, become a racist within six months,
three, o’malley has not been mayor for eight years. “not having lost all jurisdiction” is a pretty thin reed to carry the weight of blaming him for what is going on now, and in Ferguson, and elsewhere…
as i tried to say before, “they” the people in power DO NOT CARE what i think or how you feel. they don’t care about your life. they care about preserving the order that makes their constituents feel safe.
Abe Lincoln, a great hero of mine, killed people to preserve the order that made America safe, and to change the order that kept blacks in slavery. I would have been a bitter opponent of his policies when he was alive. i have a slightly different point of view now, but i think if i were in his place today i would still have avoided war and hope for a better answer not obvious to me. That said, i cannot categorically condemn “tough on crime” policies, though i can hope that the better angels of our nature would find a way to do it without killing people…. or turning them into enemies of the state.
and last, it is convenient for some politicians to bring all this up now in order to shut down any possibility of o’malley becoming a serious rival… when those politicians have exactly the same willingness to kill you or me if it suits their political purposes.
let me repeat…. you are making progress with your argument. be glad to see some real “solutions” or possible answers.
Blame the victims.
Policing, like the war on poverty, is a band aid. Salve for those owners (see Bush) distressed but not affected by the disease: poverty, austerity, raciusm and concentration of wealth as political power.
Obama calling activists Monday night in Baltimore “thugs” is like Marie Antoinette calling Mme LaFarge a thug. The activists in the Warsaw ghetto in 1944 were thugs.
To the British in India Gandhi was a “thug”.
They are not “thugs” they are the oppressed
What Dr. King would do!