The results of the vote on Al Lord's resolution went as most expected. The unaccountable, Old Guard Plus (OGP) voting against the resolution, while the accountable Alumni-Elected Trustees voting in support. For a complete list of the child abuse enablers who voted down the resolution, please go here.
The big losers today were Pennsylvania's children and Penn State.
Vote Will Enable Continued Abuse of PA's KidsBy not voting to complete the Freeh Report, the OGP continues to hide behind a report that made the ludicrous conclusion that Sandusky's serial child abuse was enabled by his access to Penn State facilities and a decision by PSU officials not to report him to DPW.
Unfortunately, because the PSU BOT not only failed to challenge these ridiculous conclusions, but actually decided to pay victim settlements based on them, the public still believes it was access to PSU facilities and a failure to report that enabled Sandusky.
For evidence of the ridiculousness of Freeh's conclusion, one only needs to examine the Freeh Report itself and the timeline of the crimes in the Sandusky case and the lawsuit of D.F. That information reveals that Sandusky continued to commit his child abuse crimes off campus after 2001, which was AFTER his inappropriate behavior was reported to The Second Mile charity.
|Sandusky established The|
Second Mile, which provided
him with continuous access
to procure child victims.
PSU had nothing to do with Sandusky's access to kids, which was cemented when Sandusky established the Second Mile charity for at-risk youths. Organizations that enabled access were obviously The Second Mile, the PA Department of Public Welfare (DPW), and the PA Office of Attorney General. The latter has responsibility for oversight of charities, while the former two ensured Sandusky's continuous access to children.
So far, all three have escaped scrutiny for their roles in enabling Sandusky.
PA DPW overlooked at least a dozen signs of possible child sexual abuse during the 1998 Sandusky investigation and concluded no abuse occurred. Its decision to nor indicate Sandusky, which would have resulted in him losing his clearance to work with children, allowed him to access and abuse children from 1998 forward.
As we have seen in several cases since 2011, the DPW's "drive by" investigations of abuse cases have resulted in continued abuse and at least on death of a child.
The OGP, by allowing the Freeh Report to go unchallenged, is keeping the most serious problem (i.e., poor investigations and lack of oversight) in the PA Child Welfare system under wraps.
Ignorance and Hypocrisy Revealed In Arguments Against Completing Freeh ReportWhen it comes to ignorance and hypocrisy, if it weren't for Mark Emmert, the OGP would be unrivaled.
Starting off today's display of nonsense/misinformation was Keith Eckel, who stated:
|Eckel: Proud that|
PSU has overcome
the BOT's negligence
& bad decisions
Penn State had an AA (Aa2) credit rating which was lowered one rank to AA- (Aa3) because of the "possible financial impacts" of the Sandusky scandal -- according to Moody's. PSU's rating was never A+ (a lower rating), as Eckel stated.
When the rating was raised back to AA (Aa2) - not removed "the watch" as Eckel erroneously stated -- Moody's cited the following:
The Aa2 rating and positive outlook reflects Penn State's significant liquidity, limited financial leverage, and rapid response to governance, management and financial challenges over the last year.
Eckel then added this doozy:
"At the end of the day my responsibility, my fiduciary responsibility is to our students and our constituents. My votes have been since that fateful day in November, they'll continue to be to this day, I urge the defeat of this resolution and the moving forward with this University and the continued observation of the results of the investigations and trials that are ongoing and because of which we cannot make any decisions today."
However, had it not been for the Board's negligence in May of 2011 when briefed on the Sandusky investigation and then disastrous decisions on 11/9/11 and beyond, PSU's credit rating would never have been revised downward. The "financial impacts" to PSU were created by Eckel and his board cohorts when they hired Freeh, failed to challenge his report, then decided to pay victim settlements based on Freeh's erroneous conclusions.
It is the ultimate in hypocrisy for Eckel to say that a decision couldn't be made today because of ongoing investigations and pending trials, considering that investigations and trials were underway when he and his cohorts made every ill-fated decision in the aftermath of the scandal.
Richard Dandrea echoed Eckel's hypocrisy. He also appeared to be in denial about the evidence that has emanated from other investigations and proceedings -- which has already rendered some of Freeh's findings moot:
|Dandrea: In denial that|
some of the Freeh Report
conclusions have been
By your own definition, Mr. Dandrea, wasn't the Freeh Report a premature attempt to address the questions about Sandusky's serial child sex abuse?
Kenneth Frazier remarkably made the admission that the Freeh Report was incomplete, which should have been one of the biggest news items to come from today's meeting (after the vote tally). Frazier, who previously praised the report for being "thorough and comprehensive," backed away from that statement today.
|Frazier finally admits|
Freeh Report was
Frazier: I think Louis Freeh did an investigation that was limited from the very beginning by the constraints that happened because there was an ongoing criminal proceeding. The answer to that is no.
However, in the very next breath, Frazier went stated his delusions about the utility of the Freeh investigation.
At the same time I would say I think that investigation produced evidence that made a significant impact on the sandusky prosecution and more importantly the facts and conclusions it led us to make (indiscernible) a number of changes in how we ran the University.."
None of the evidence used in the Sandusky prosecution was obtained by Freeh's team, according to the evidence exhibits listed in the trial transcripts. Even if you believe that Freeh found the emails and Schultz file (he didn't), those were not used in the prosecution of Sandusky.
Casey Resolution Reveals Bias, Ignorance
|Casey resolution to|
"do nothing" gained
support of the OGP.
In response to the resolution, Al Lord scoffed, "This is to do nothing."
The alumni-elected trustees requested the vote be tabled until it could be more fully reviewed and discussed, but the motion to table was defeated.
The preamble to the Casey resolution was:
"Whereas, Penn State reviewed and analyzed the recommendations made by Freeh and implemented substantially all of such recommendations in ways that strengthened the University’s compliance, safety, governance, child protection and other functions.."
Casey, like most of the OGP, appears ignorant of the fact that one of the new policies enacted in the lead up to the Freeh Report would actually create an environment conducive to child abuse occurring on PSU's campus.
PSU Policy AD73, which requires that a person with a PSU ID can only have one guest when using campus facilities, would promote one-on-one adult/child situations like those Sandusky used to perpetrate abuse. The fact that facilities can only be used during operating hours would not inhibit offenders like Sandusky, who have the ability to abuse their victims in plain sight.
Not only does the policy provide an atmosphere conducive to acquaintance offenders, but it also disenfranchises the State College and Central Pennsylvania community who formerly were able to utilize the recreation facilities. The policy was a knee-jerk reaction to the scandal based on the flawed understanding of child sex abuse possessed by Louis Freeh's team. The origination date of the policy is July 9, 2012.
Ironically, PSU Policy AD39 discourages one-on-one contact between adults and children during University sponsored programs. This policy has been on the books since 1992 and its revision history indicates the one-to-one provision had been there since inception.
The resolution, with a minor amendment, passed 17 - 8, with Adam Taliaferro not voting.
Penn State Loses Too
With the defeat of the Lord resolution -- and again, the public perception that PSU accepts the Freeh Report -- for the forseeable future, Penn State will have to live with the stigma of being "Pedophile State University" and being unjustly characterized as a culture that put the welfare of children below that of its football program.
Trustee Pope's stance reflected the views of her constituents:
“I don’t want to stand behind this report one more day.”
PSU will also continue to suffer the financial consequences as civil attorneys continue to utilize the Freeh Report to justify their lawsuits filed by Sandusky's victims.
Trustee Lord laid out the impact of the Freeh Report on tuition:
I wish that besides this we were actually talking about matters like instead of -- instead of being pleased with only increasing tuition 2, 3%, we're actually able to talk about reducing tuition.
The pending lawsuits where PSU is a defendant will force discovery and more of the truth will be revealed. In addition, it appears gubernatorial candidate Tom Wolf is poised for victory and will be able to appoint a new set of trustees to replace Corbett's selections.
Finally, Senator Yudichak continues to monitor the recent board proposal approved by the governance committee, but raised questions about the legality of the Board reorganizing itself.
While the OGP won yet another battle, they have by no means won the war.