Richard J. Condon: Unauthorized Psychoanalysis

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First of a seven-part series

You cannot understand the mind of Richard J. Condon, Special Commissioner of Investigation For The New York City Public Schools until, you firstly get past the inflated, euphemistic and extremely misleading title of his office and secondly, until you know who is his boss.  

Condon is not special and his mind is not a special mind. He is not really a commissioner and he does not think as a commissioner thinks. He is certainly neither for the New York City Schools nor is he a part of the Department of Education. He is not an educator. He is simply a Cop of the extremely ordinary variety.

His mind is the mind of a cop of the extremely ordinary variety.  He knows, even if you don’t, who is his boss and who is not. He knows, even if you do not, what his boss wants and doesn’t want. Lastly he knows how and which people to bop in the head to achieve what his boss wants and that’s all any cop, no matter what you call him, needs to know.

Yet by law, the un-special and extremely ordinary Condon has special even super powers. He can examine or remove any record in the public school system. He can investigate any complaint, rumor or suspicion of improper or unethical behavior in the NYC School System. He can even initiate investigations without probable cause. He can issue reports that are covered in the media as if they are judge’s decisions rather than simple cop reports.

He can literally force the removal of any employee of the New York City School system from the Chancellor on down. Only in America could a little cop boy from Staten Island grow up to wield such power. Condon is clearly a beneficiary of the only Affirmative Action that survives in North America; the white kind.

Affirmative Action For A Trojan Horse
Condon’s Affirmative Action began with meeting and hanging out with the right people. According to former mayor, Edward I. Koch, as quoted by David Dunlap in the New York Times, October 24, 1989,  Condon met Edward Koch in Greenwich Village in 1965 while Koch was walking with Allen Ginsberg the poet and Ginsberg’s companion, Peter Orlovsky. 

Koch is quoted to say that he was amazed to discover that Condon already “knew Ginsberg and he knew his poetry.” Koch is further quoted to say that he, then invited Condon “into a coffee shop” with him, Peter and Allen. Koch apparently remembered this extremely ordinary cop for a long time because in the very last nine weeks of Koch’s term of office, 24 years later, he appointed Condon as the New York City Commissioner of Police for what Condon hoped would be a five year term.  Wisely, the next mayor, David Dinkins, wasted no time getting rid of, Koch’s “Trojan Horse” and in January 1990 replaced Condon with an educated Black man named Dr. Lee Brown.

Impersonating A Lawyer Again: Bloomberg Changes Rules
Ironically, the post Condon now holds was created by the same Black man, who rejected and humiliated him, Mayor David Dinkins. Condon is immensely unqualified for this post, especially as it was originally designed. Dinkins’  Executive order 11 of June 28, 1990, which established this position, specifically states that the Deputy Commissioner (The title didn’t get inflated to Special Commissioner until 1992) should be an attorney “in good standing with the bar of the State of New York”.

It further states that this Special Commissioner should be independent of the Board of Education  (Department of Education) but under the auspices of the Commissioner of The Department of Investigation. This oversight by the Commissioner of Investigation is still true today.  In keeping with these standards, the first Special (Deputy) Commissioner   that Dinkins Appointed, Dr. Ed Stancik was not only an attorney in good standing with the bar, but a scholar, a former prosecutor and former Managing Editor for the Law Review at Columbia University Law School.

It wasn’t until 12 years later, on June 18, 2002, that Michael Bloomberg issued his own Executive Order 15, which lowered the job’s standards by removing the requirement for admission to the bar. Bloomberg thereby also removed one of the safeguards against unethical behavior. Did he do this just so Condon could “assume” the position? It appears so.  

For on the same day of the issuance of Executive order 15 lowering the requirements for the position, Bloomberg issued a press release announcing Condon’s appointment as Special Commissioner. Bloomberg’s executive order reshaped the position functionally from prosecutor to cop leaving  “5 years of law enforcement experience” as the only pre-requisite for the job. 

Technically, an experienced Kmart guard who had the good fortune to double date with the right couple at the right coffee shop would also now qualify for the job; that is, providing he or she has the temerity and lack of ethics to impersonate a lawyer. 

Countering The Conspiracy To Un-employ White Men
With his career birthed by Koch, buried by Dinkins exhumed by Bloomberg, Richard J. Condon was with the stroke of a pen, empowered to bring New York City style policing to the Department of Education. To Date Condon has been a one man wrecking crew for educated Blacks of the type that deep sixed his career in 1990. 

In an orgy of undoing, selective perception and selective prosecution, Condon has gotten rid of the very best Black educators, especially the few Black men educators in the system. His victims have included Dr. Lee McCaskill the principal of Brooklyn Tech who was getting record numbers of Black males to successfully complete Advanced Placement courses and who was getting 95 percent of the Black boys at his school to graduate, Dr. Walter Turnbull, the Founder of internationally acclaimed Boys Choir of Harlem and Director of Academy associated with it, and most recently Mr. Shango Blake the Middle school principal of Junior High School 109 in District 29 of Queens, who had taken his school from the lowest performing in the district to the highest performing in the District during his four year tenure. 

Ex Post Fictional - Who To Be Unkind To
The kind of folks upon whom Condon’s boss has unleashed him, are the very kind of people with whom Condon has a score to settle—educated Black men of achievement especially any that might have the first name Lee. 

When each of these educated Black men of achievement was bopped in the head by Condon, predictably, many people complained. However, they typically directed their complaints to Joel Klein, the Chancellor of the NYC Department of Education, under the mistaken idea that Klein is Condon’s boss.

Condon is not an educator; he is a cop. If Black People don’t know he is a cop, for them he is an undercover cop. So who is his boss?  Klein is demonstrably not Condon’s boss. Condon could literally tell Klein or any of Klein’s subordinates to go stand in the corner and he or she would have to do it.

Executive Order 11 makes obstruction of the Special Commissioner grounds for removal from the system.  Klein, on the other hand, can’t touch Condon’s subordinates. When Condon’s Deputy Regina Loughran came under harsh criticism for allegedly mishandling, prior to Condon’s arrival, a number of child molestation cases, Klein’s opinion was not a factor. One of Condon’s first demonstrations of his power was protecting her from all critics. Conversely, against Klein’s wishes, Condon bopped the head of Klein’s handpicked Deputy, Diana Lam as soon as she got into office.

Condon charged that she had used her position to help her husband to get a job. (Her husband presumably gets his java from a different shop than Condon and Koch.) Klein could not protect her or her husband. To insure that Klein never forgets the power dynamic, Condon serves periodic reminders as to who is not boss.

Most recently Condon reversed a disciplinary matter handled totally within Klein’s department regarding school administrators in Brooklyn’s Cobble Hill School. The administrators had been accused of helping students cheat.
So You Want To Play Hardball; I’ll Revoke Your Whistle Blower Status
Although this case was handled by Klein and his subordinates two years ago, Condon, for reasons only he has to know, reviewed and reversed the findings.  Condon then blasted Klein’s investigator and wrote a scathing report that attempts to discredit the alleged eyewitness, a teacher named Philip Nobile that had supported Klein’s investigator’s decision. In Condon's report he boldly placed a harbinger of things to come for Mr. Nobile who refused to change his story for Condon.

Condon warns in his report, referring to Nobile, “We have determined that he did not meet the statutory requirements to obtain whistleblower status. Nobile did not report his allegations of cheating and of a cover-up to one of the enumerated agencies in the whistleblower law.” 

Translation: “Technically, Mr. Klein, this witness blew the wrong whistle to the wrong tune to the wrong people so you, any of your subordinates or I can retaliate against this witness with impunity and I recommend that we do so.”

Predictably an altogether new investigation charging corporal punishment has been initiated against Nobile, the pesky eyewitness. Corporal punishment is Condon’s standby charge to levy against opponents when the findings in a case haven’t gone his way.

In the Shango Blake Case when his investigation of financial misappropriation revealed no actual stealing, Condon attached an allegation of corporal punishment to his findings on the financial matters. Even though all the eyewitnesses to the alleged punishment said no such corporal punishment occurred, Condon wrote that it occurred and recommended punishment for them--the witnesses.

Cop Heaven
The eyewitnesses in the cases Condon encounters are particularly vulnerable to intimidation by Condon because they typically work for the Department of Education.

Executive order 11 allows Condon to investigate anyone working for the Department of Education for virtually any suspicion, including Condon’s own self initiated suspicions, presumably as many times as he becomes suspicious.

Should a member of the Department of Education disagree with Condon, Condon needs only to work himself up into a suspicion of that person. He then can investigate until he finds some more things about which to become suspicious.

He can repeat that process over and over until ultimately he can bop that person in the head. He doesn’t need probable cause to go in. He doesn’t have to worry about disbarment because he is only impersonating a lawyer. 

He doesn’t have to worry about the cost of his cases since the Department of Investigation does not have to foot the bill. Executive Order 11 specifies that the Department of Education has to pay for his investigations, no matter how costly and presumably no matter how frivolous or unwarranted the charge. Condon has deep pockets and a full arsenal of Cop tricks learned over the course of a 50 year Cop career and people don’t even know he’s a cop. Condon is in Cop Heaven. If he is in Cop Heaven, then who is his boss? Be Careful; this is a trick question.

(End of part one)


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