Monday, October 20, 2008
MAJOR SCANDAL: CONNIE SCOTT LINKED TO VIOLENT, ANTI-MEXICAN MOVEMENT
Also Unveiled: Sheriff Kaelin’s Role In This Deceptive Plot
(Series: Part One -- of two parts)
Nueces County, Texas – A Candidate for State Representative – i.e., Connie Scott – has been linked to a violent-oriented anti-Mexican movement by prominent journalists and scholarly researchers. In a calculated move she was appointed to lead Bay Area Citizens Against Lawsuit Abuse (CALA) ten years ago. It came as a result of the influence of her husband – Mike Scott, who founded H&S Contractors) and recently has been unearthed to as being part of an agenda that is shocking many parties whom are disassociating with him.
Mike Scott has been part of a movement (that this publication is going to detail at length) that is shocking in that it threatens the rights of average John and Jane Doe to seek social justice. This movement is funded by mega-dollars and threatens not only the civil rights and civil liberties and social and political privileges of ordinary citizens but their voice in a democratic society.
This couple – Mike and Connie Scott – are part of a dangerous fake activist group (or Front Group). This group/organization was both established and paid for by wealthy corporations and use deception and lies, the purpose is to con citizens into believing and working against problems that cut into Corporate Profits and Government ambitions.
THE VIOLENT ANTI-MEXICAN ORGINS OF CALA (Citizens Against Lawsuit Abuse):
In late 1987, two Mexicans crossed the border to find work here. They were chased by what have been referred to as “vigilantes” of a Sugarcane Coop. According to the book entitled CLOSING THE COURTROOM DOOR, author Stephanie Mencimer (an investigative reporter for the Washington Post and staff writer for Legal times) writes what happened next: “As they (the two Mexicans) attempted to cross the field, employees of the Rio Grande Valley Sugar Growers Mill allegedly saw the men and lit the field on fire. Both men were horribly burned. Two Weeks later, one died. The ensuing lawsuit revealed a history of similar incidents … The Sugar Growers Cooperative settled the suit for $8 million” (page 40).
The award by the court angered those who had been part of a Patron-Peon structure for too long. The racially charged group (which began to serve as an initial “front group” for corporations) referred to the case callously as “LAWSUIT ABUSE BY MEXICANS”; the injured family said that “No price could ever be put on a human life.” At first both Anglo and Hispanic businessmen shied away from being affiliated with this movement for fears of being labeled. But soon after this Mike Scott, future husband of Connie Scott, would see it as a business opportunity and as a stepping stone for procuring political clout.
This legal ruling (and award of damages) by a court of law was aimed at by the families of the injured parties in order to achieve social justice. Yet the corporations in the area reinforced a blaze of profound racial tensions in the Valley of South Texas. Quickly corporations co-opted (or absorbed) the “anti-wetback fervor” movement to realize their own agendas. The movement was attractive and needed to be micromanaged by Corporate gurus. Mike Scott, now Connie Scott’s husband would gravitate to this “Remember The Alamo” battle cry. He would not only enroll in this early organizational phase of CALA but in many other related organizations that shared a similar aim such as Texans For Lawsuit Reform.
After the award cited earlier to the Mexican families, two workers (would join together) and file yet another suit against the Sugarcane Coop. They had been wrongly fired from their jobs merely for applying for Workmen Compensation. According to the noted author Mencimer, the Sugarcane Coop “had a reputation for being tight-fisted with injured workers and their families.” The two workers were awarded $2.5 million by a court.
The climate of minority workers rising to seek social and legal justice and damages had perturbed the status quo in place. Ranchers and other business groups that were benefitting from these social arrangements responded to this “remember the Alamo-type” war cry. CPL (the electric company giant) now part of American, Energy and Power (AEP) which was facing the climate of deregulation pressures saw this crisis and racially charged anti-Hispanic movement as one to be co-opted in their favor but spinned to meet both their political and economic agenda. A bogus marketing company known as INVENTIVA emerged in San Antonio. According to one CPL/now AEP employee, “INVENTIVA was involved with CPL to achieve ‘under the radar’ agendas. Keep in mind that most of us in these high posts have even had their dads and relatives work for this CORPORATION. In order to rise in the ranks of this CORPORATION loyalty is always an issue.”
In 1994 in Weslaco, Texas, some of the corporate leaders met at the local chamber of commerce with some of the leaders of the disgruntled parties who were part of the initial phase of the Anti-Mexican movement (that later would be guised under a new marketing spin – “lawsuit abuse”). The group (with the cash cow of CPL/now AEP) decided to hire a spin doctor and political consultant by the name of Jon Opelt. Opelt’s goal would be to co-opt and clandestinely use high-tech marketing deceptive tactics.
They began to toss the idea of forming a “front group” (or a fake citizens group to serve as a mouthpiece for corporate interests – new corporations had joined the bandwagon during this new chapter). According to one CPL employee in the region: “They searched for an Hispanic face to put on the newly formed organization so as to try and water down and hide the anti-Hispanic variable at play. This group would eventually become known as Citizens Against Lawsuit Abuse. Many prominent Hispanic professionals working within the corporate structure were courted but refused to be used in such a way.” However, there was an ambitious one, Gonzalo Sandoval, the former head of Central Power and Light – now part of AEP (American, Energy And Power) who used the crisis to propel himself to the top. Sandoval was now being paid a hefty salary by CPL as a top administrator, and was convinced to head the organization of CALA as the first President in Weslaco. [See “Phony Grassroots Groups” by Katherine Lemons (Sept. 2000) at www.consciouschoice.com].
And Corpus Christi had a seed in this CALA movement – Mike Scott, Vice President of H&S and disgruntled former member of the Texas Executive Committee of the Republican Party that had been replaced by an ethnic minority). Scott saw the climate as one ripe his agenda in Corpus Christi and Nueces County (and the regional area) which had a growing Hispanic population and was traditionally Democrat. He laid the seed for a new chapter of CALA which would emerge in Nueces County and be led by Connie Scott (his wife).
Mike Scott would become both an activist and member of the CALA as well as a member of Texans For Legal Reform) movements. And expediently timed, in this terrain, the founder of CALA, Gonzalo Sandoval, would also emerge as the top administrator of CPL in Corpus Christi (located in what is now the AEP Building headquarters – across the street from the Catholic Cathedral). Local Attorney Lance Bruum (a Republican activist) would tell El Defenzor that the CALA movement in Nueces County was too extremist at the time. “The CALA movement believes that most lawsuits are not justified. It disarms many from seeking damages,” he stated.
In the late 1990s Sandoval would head the CPL/now AEP network of offices to target an elderly social activist, Jose Armando Marroquin, who had become a strong voice (via Spanish Radio) for the local taxpayers association and had been christened by many as both a leader and voice for the Hispanic Community. Marroquin, who owned a local upholstery shop in the Westside of Corpus Christi and who had been effective in raising the consciousness of the CPL’s monopoly in the area, would be targeted in the most clandestine of styles. A top floor meeting would take place at the former CPL building, now AEP, called by President Gonzalo Sandoval, to launch a volley of print media attacks against the credibility of Marroquin. Even CPL’s top public relations person – Ms. Sharon Trott – would be part of the ‘pow-wow.’” (Source: Personal testimony taken by two persons who were present at the high-level meeting. Electronic documentation, Exhibit D, shared Oct. 1, 2008).
During the CPL High Level Meeting, President Sandoval would remark about his concerns about trial lawyers in the area such as Phil Vela, Rene Rodriguez and a few others. “They have filed so many lawsuits that they have the forms ready to launch one right now against anyone.” Little did Sandoval realize at the time that their arch foe (Attorney Phil Vela) would be recruited by Mike Scott into the ranks of Republican Party and made a staple of the suppressing the appetites of “certain” trial lawyers for huge awards. (Note Phil Vela is believed to be lobbying to appoint his wife Rose Vela as the next Federal Judge – word circulating is that Federal Judge Hayden Head Jr., is ill and might be stepping down soon).
Later even former CPL’s Public Relations spin doctor, Ms. Trott, would be criticized for serving a similar role as serving as a “front person” for corporate interests (for contractors such as Joe Fulton and Berry Construction and for American Bank) in spearheading groups such as FORWARD CORPUS CHRISTI to convince the public to pass bond elections to bankroll mega-construction projections by way of taxpayer monies. In short, some have openly described her role in such organizations as “Selling Debt To Nueces County Taxpayers.”
The expedient pact of the various parties involved had been realized. But through CALA – a worst anti-Mexican flare of sentiments (has been absorbed by spin doctoring) and thus had been fueled by mega-dollar contributions of corporations, contributions coming from the tobacco company Phillip Morris (where the noted political consultant Karl Rove had been hired as a consultant), Central Power Light (now part of AEP or American Energy and Power), refineries, and later by some professional associations. Later documentation would surface linking Mike Scott, to reiterate: Connie Scott’s husband, to tobacco funding monies).
One of the grubbiest lies told by CALA’s regional leader and executive director – Connie Scott – would be that a corporate agenda did not exist. In a regional newspaper known as The Nueces County Record*Star (whose offices are located in Robstown), Ms. Scott would refer to her work at CALA as “community service.” She had become not only a glib chameleon for a cold and callous corporate agenda but she had enrolled in a “wild-eye” faction within the Texas Republican Party. The documented money trail and behind the scenes fund-raisers (left both by she herself and her husband) would also hint at her private loyalties and clandestine political network – from U.S. Senator John Cornyn to Texas Attorney General Greg Abbot to what has been referred to Nueces County Sheriff Jim Kaelin. Additionally, her husband, Mike Scott, would achieve greater political clout in the area; and start sponsoring fund-raisers not only for the Attorney General, but disturbingly for members of the Texas Supreme Court.
According to Court Watch: “In Texas, the public elects supreme court judges, which means that those candidates, like candidates for any other elected office, are targeted by special interest groups interested in future pay-backs. CALAs have been among the highest contributors to supreme court candidates, and with measurable effect… Court Watch’s 1991-1999 report on insurance cases in the Texas Supreme Court reveals that ‘decisions by the high court eliminated significant incentives for insurance companies to behave responsibly, stripping consumers of important protections.’"
Mike Scott would also go on to be appointed to serve in the Texas Executive Committee of the Republican Party – and his aim had been realized to begin targeting Democrats, most were Hispanics in the region, via his new found artillery. Also, former-Democrat Attorney Phil Vela (husband to then-Distirct Judge Rose Vela—now a 13th Court Of Appeals Judge elected under the Republican Banner) who was courted into the Republican Party by Mike Scott told El Defenzor a few weeks ago in a telephone interview: “I am trying to help these guys do what I did within the Democratic Party but they are much too rigid. I know that the talk out there is that I am still a puppet for Solomon P. Ortiz but I’m not. I have helped them identify how to disable the funding sources of the Democratic Party.” One of the concerns being expressed in the discussion was if there was an anti-Hispanic variable at play. Vela circumvented the issue by saying: “I am just trying to show them how to win in this particular environment.”
The CALA movement in the last two years needed a front person who had the official status to begin taking aim at persons within the Democratic Party that fitted “the bill” of what their spin doctors defined as a good target. The first problems that CALA and the associated faction within this radical wing of the Republican Party faced was the high-dollars being channeled into the party by Attorney Mikal Watts (and Mauricio Celis, the head of an international law group known as CTG and Associates). The word is that the county attorney (Carlos Valdez) was approached and key Republican representatives were prepared to offer him either a state of federal appointment for assisting in executing a political agenda. Valdez , some described, as to entrenched in his job to placed himself in an aleatory (chance game) situation. So the elite CALA group had to settle for Plan B – in which many were offered political appointments and perquisites.
Nueces County Sheriff Jim Kaelin – this was their choice. Sheriff Kaelin had promised that he was not going to use his office ever to grant special treatment or grant special favors (especially partisan favors) snaked from his promise. It was discovered that Sheriff Kaelin was quite a spin doctor himself. In fact he had been granting special favors to professionals and friends despite his rhetoric to the media. In one occasion a prominent doctors son was picked up on a warrant out of Austin. A telephone call placed to Kaelin, and immediately took the elevator and placed him in the medical ward and gave him the most comfortable room – thick mattress, a newspaper to read every day, bottled water.
The CALA crowd got wind of this incident and several others. Even the Court Coordinator – Jeremy Goss -- that Sheriff Kaelin had hired was giving the “red carpet” treatment – Goss, while he had his own girlfriend in jail gave her two cell phones and a charger.
A Republican insider told this publication: “We got wind of it. Our job was to disable the funding within the Democratic Party. We needed someone to go after Mauricio Celis (a non-certified) attorney in Texas that had a dubious link to the legal profession. If we could tie in some of the Democratic Candidates running for office to Celis, we had a bomb. We could butt our slate of selective Republican candidates into office. We turned to Sheriff Kaelin for assistance. The State Attorney General (whose campaigns had been bankrolled by CALA dollars) would be receptive to this case. The trouble is that District Attorney Valdez was not on board and Kaelin via contacting the Attorney General would change matters.”
The source extended in fine detail: “Why wouldn’t Sheriff Kaelin join us in going after Mauricio Celis? He was a fellow Republican and he had helped him get reelected – and we knew he was full of hot air: he put on this air of impressions, but we knew what he was really up to when his guard was down.”
El Defenzor asked the source: “ What pointed to Sheriff Kaelin’s receptivity?” “A combination of sorts. For one his chief deputy – John Galvan – was taking the county vehicle he was driving (and still is I undertand) out of the county. He lives in Mathis area I believe.”
Is Sheriff Kaelin politically bribable? Has he or his family members received any political favoritism in the last two years? Mauricio Celis was eventually indicted. Sheriff Kaelin justified his actions by saying he was going after him “because he pretended to be a law enforcement officer” – but his motivation is still being debated by political insiders.
The source concluded: “Kaelin could not find the missing knife which got lost in the kitchen recently. He did mess up with the case of Roberto Garica (whom committed suicide): where there were court orders to place him in a hospital instead of a jail. But he got one thing right! Going after the cash cow of the Democratic Party – Mauricio Celis.”
Is the CALA movement growing in sophistication? Some very wealthy persons, corporations, elite professionals have been transformed into social Darwinists in the process. Now that Connie Scott has stepped out of her sham role in the CALA organization a counter movement has emerged.
“Yes we are beginning to see it very clear. Now Nueces County is under attack,” Civil Rights Leader for LULAC Joe Ortiz told this publication. “I do NOT mean by terrorists.We are bombarded by fake and false candidates and organization such as the Corporate Pawn – Connie Scott.”
The Civil Rights leader added: “Some corporations working alongside of CALA are clandestinely working to dismiss civil rights issues also as frivolous – this is our concern in Civil rights. They want to totally disarm us. Some have been shot down by the way due to these forces. They hire and form PR (public relations) groups to launch lies and propaganda against the escaped truth. Today as a result it has become impossible to trust many a local mainstream print or air media entity. Canned lies and propaganda are being forced down our throats. It is time we start insisting that the mainstream media gives us a voice in it.”
The founding SPIN DOCTOR, Jon Opelt, mentioned earlier in this article, of Citizens Against Lawsuit Abuse deceptively canned a statement to The Guardian newspaper in England in December 1999: “"We don't lobby or make contributions to candidates, we talk to the general public” (see www.guardian.com.uk/world/1999/dec/13/law.theguardian1).
But records in Nueces County provided by the Federal Election Commission (which can be found at www.city-data.com and at www.city-data.com/elec2/elec-ROBSTOWN-TX.html) show the disingenuous and misleading statements released by CALA to the media. A few examples from the citation provided above www.city-data.com are shared below (especially contributions channeled to Senator John Cornyn who is one of the major voices for the Tort Reform movement who is currently facing a popular Demorcrat Rich Noriega):
CONNIE SCOTT (H & S Construction/Construction), (Zip code: 78380) $250 to REPUBLICAN PARTY OF TEXAS on 01/23/08
CONNIE SCOTT (CITIZENS AGAINST LAWSUIT ABUSE/EXEC), (Zip code: 78380) $600 to TEXANS FOR SENATOR JOHN CORNYN INC on 05/31/07
MIKE D SCOTT (H&S CONSTRUCTORS INC./VICE PRESIDEN), (Zip code: 78380) $200 to TEXANS FOR SENATOR JOHN CORNYN INC on 05/31/07
CONNIE SCOTT (CITIZENS AGAINST LAWSUIT ABUSE/EXEC), (Zip code: 78380) $60] to TEXANS FOR SENATOR JOHN CORNYN INC on 05/31/07
CONNIE SCOTT (CITIZENS AGAINST LAWSUIT ABUSE/EXEC), (Zip code: 78380) $800 to TEXANS FOR SENATOR JOHN CORNYN INC on 05/31/07
MIKE D SCOTT (H&S CONSTRUCTORS INC./VICE PRESIDENT), (Zip code: 78380) $200] to TEXANS FOR SENATOR JOHN CORNYN INC on 05/31/07
MIKE D SCOTT (H&S CONSTRUCTORS INC./VICE PRESIDEN), (Zip code: 78380) $400 to TEXANS FOR SENATOR JOHN CORNYN INC on 05/31/07
CONNIE SCOTT (Citizens Against Lawsuit Abuse/Exec), (Zip code: 78380) $2000 to ALAMO PAC on 02/08/08
MIKE D SCOTT (H&S CONSTRUCTORS INC./VICE PRESIDEN), (Zip code: 78380) $2000 to TEXANS FOR SENATOR JOHN CORNYN INC on 06/06/06
CONNIE SCOTT (CITIZENS AGAINST LAWSUIT ABUSE/EXEC), (Zip code: 78380) $1700 to TEXANS FOR SENATOR JOHN CORNYN INC on 08/31/06
CONNIE SCOTT (CITIZENS AGAINST LAWSUIT ABUSE/EXEC), (Zip code: 78380) $1800 to TEXANS FOR SENATOR JOHN CORNYN INC on 08/31/06
CONNIE SCOTT (CITIZENS AGAINST LAWSUIT ABUSE/EXEC), (Zip code: 78380) $170] to TEXANS FOR SENATOR JOHN CORNYN INC on 08/31/06
MIKE D SCOTT, (Zip code: 78380) $1800 to TEXANS FOR SENATOR JOHN CORNYN INC on 07/10/06
CONNIE SCOTT (CITIZENS AGAINST LAWSUIT ABUSE/EXEC), (Zip code: 78380) $2000 to TEXANS FOR SENATOR JOHN CORNYN INC on 11/04/05
The messy details of the underhanded deals have just been released in a new report by the Center for Justice & Democracy and Public Citizen. The report explains how CALAs funneled money from big business — giants like Philip Morris, Dow Chemical, Exxon, General Electric, Aetna, Geico and Nationwide — to support covert agendas.