Saving face: Miall apologizes for online rant

Saving face: Miall apologizes for online rant-attachment0

Photo of mayoral candidate John Miall by Xpress photographer Max Cooper

After calling Asheville City Council member Gordon Smith “Gordumb” in a rant posted on a public Facebook comment thread last night, mayoral candidate John Miall says he regrets his word choice.

“I used a poor choice of words in responding to that post. I have this morning personally apologized to Councilman Smith, and he was as gracious and as gentlemanly as I would expect him to be,” Miall says. “Beyond that, the content of my statements regarding the I-26 connector are on the record and I stand by that.”

Miall wrote the 369-word comment on Smith’s Facebook page after the council member shared a link to a Citizen-Times article about the mayoral candidates’ views on transportation issues. The article lead with the statement Miall made at the Council of Independent Business Owners lunch this Wednesday about his views on the I-26 Connector project. At that event, Miall told the CIBO crowd he would support the project, saying, “Eight or 800 [lanes], we need relief. It’s that simple.” (Read more about the event here.) In the online comment, Miall wrote in all-caps, “YES I FAVOR BUILDING AN I-26 CONNECTOR.”

In the comment posted from his personal Facebook account, Miall also took a brief jab at fellow mayoral candidate Vice Mayor Esther Manheimer, writing “I don’t have a law practice to pay salaries for people to run my campaign.” However, the comment is no longer available on Smith’s Facebook page after Miall deleted it. However, Xpress acquired the full text of Miall’s comment.

Here is Miall’s full and unedited rant:

Well, well. While I was out campaigning and preparing financial reports (I don’t have a law practice to pay salaries for people to run my campaign) The Misleader-In-Chief A/K/A Gordon Smith has stirred a pot. GOing to the top of this thread let e say that the only thing “startling,” Gordon is that anyone pays any attention to you. YOur history of deception and misinformation has not fully caught up with you, yet. le’s define important terms in this discussion. YES I FAVOR BUILDING AN I-26 CONNECTOR. If you heard the question as it was stated at yesterday’s debate we were asked if we suported the “8 lane…..” Obviously to everyone except Gordo (or, shall I define this important term as Gordumb from this point on) I made a joke…. Arguably funnier than Tim Moffit’s attempt at humor, but a joke none the less. Let’s get a pont on the table…. Anyone who REALLY thinks I meant to build 800 lanes PLEASE don’t vote for me. I don’t want your support! Now, that said, Esther clearly said she and the close to getting this resolved, blah, blah, blah. It didn’t sound to me like she was actually AGAINST IT! Now, important terms: The following things are “traffic calming” in the broadest sense and I SUPPORT them: Stop lights/signs, speed humps, regulatory signs like yield, slow, etc. The actual question form yesterday SPECIFICALLY REFERENCED bulb-outs. As a skilled and trained Risk Manager (I would point out I was named public Risk Manager of the Year in 2005 by PRIMA… The Public Risk and Insurance Management Association) that anything done to impede the flow of traffic including but not limited to forcing vehicular traffic across center lines into opposing traffic (INCLUDING BICYCLES, ETC) is creating an unsafe environment and setting the stage for a suit based upon constructive negligence. Those are big words, Gordumb, but feel free to call me if you need a translation. I never have, do not now, and never will agree that such impediments to the flow of traffic are in the best interest of the motoring public, bicyclists, motorcyclists, mopeds, or pedestrians. When applied in such a way as to create an obstacle course for motorists”

When this reporter sat down with Miall a few weeks ago and asked him what he sees as his greatest challenges if elected as mayor, he said it would include working with members of council.

In that interview he said, “I think my first challenge is internally to show that not only can I, but I want to work with them [council]— even if I disagree with them.”

Today, Miall says, “I assured councilman Smith when I spoke with him this morning by phone, that I would consider it a privilege to serve with him and the rest of the council and hope, if I’m successful, that they would feel the same.”

Smith declined to comment further on the matter, but did confirm that Miall telephoned and apologized to him personally this morning at 8 a.m.

Caitlin Byrd can be reached at cbyrd@mountainx.com or 251-1333, ext.140.

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33 thoughts on “Saving face: Miall apologizes for online rant

  1. Dionysis

    This immature tirade, confusingly written and full of snarky insults, does not make him look like someone who should represent the diverse population of the city. It certainly does not support his claim that he respects other Council members. Deleting the offending post does not negate the content either.

  2. T. Keith Thomson

    Miall seemed very angry at the CIBO event.

    His desire to abolish the Asheville City School system is very ill considered and because of it, he no longer has my vote.

    • D. Dial

      ABOLISH?…… He didn’t say that, he said “combine,”. Like almost every other school system in this state. Elected school Boards must answer to voters, and Asheville City Schools answer to no one.

    • D. Dial

      ABOLISH?…… He didn’t say that, he said “combine,”. Like almost every other school system in this state. Elected school Boards must answer to voters, and Asheville City Schools answer to no one.

    • T. Keith Thomson

      Ms Dial: If you rather, call it a forced, and unwanted, merger of Asheville City School System into the Buncombe County School System. You say potahto, I say potayto.

      Fortunately for the families of the Asheville City Schools, although John Miall doesn’t seem to understand it, the Mayor of Asheville cannot force a merger or rescind the 80 year old ACS District supplemental tax.

      In any event, I have changed my original plan to vote for Miall for Mayor, and will consider my other alternatives. I am glad I did not already vote on the first day of early voting.

      What else is John Miall unaware of the role of the mayor? It is not to be chief bureaucrat of the city, despite his experience in one area of city management. The Mayor holds the gavel at council meetings, exercises ceremonial roles, and has one vote on council, a majority of which hires the city manager and the city attorney. It is called the City Manager form of government, and includes what is called a “weak” Mayor.

  3. D. Dial

    Woo hooo! Mix it up candidates!

    At least Miall confronts head on, as opposed to Esther who sends out her little lackeys to do her smear campaign. It’s a small town and word gets around pretty fast that this is the Manheimer method of operation. I guess that’s how one has to operate in the face of a flailing City Council with many failures under their belt this past four years. Just wondering how this ranks to Cecil’s accusing Mark Hunt of having dollar bills stuffed in his ears. lol

    On the bright side for Miall…this will get the attention of anyone fed up with Gordo’s manipulative, propagandizing fear mongering, with every day becoming yet another sky is falling, wolfs are at the door scenario due to anyone who disagrees with him. I can say this because unfortunately I voted for “crumbling infrastructure Gordo” in the past.

  4. bsummers

    This is the first time I put my little toe into the online virtual world of Mt. Exp.

    Did you bring a bat and some disinfectant?

    • D. Dial

      Don’t forget to put on those high waders, cuz the B.S. level is very deep.

  5. Scotty_Mack

    Martin Ramsey for sanity 2013! No more lawyers, real estate, or big business in city gov’t!

  6. Marc Hunt

    I want for Council to have healthy informed debate, to agree when we can, and to constructively disagree when we must. We owe that to the citizens. Of all leadership roles the mayor must play, the most critical is to support that dynamic by fostering trust and ensuring space for communication. Our council-manager/

  7. bsummers

    See what I said about disinfectant, Honor Moor? No matter how hard you deny it, there will be people claiming that “supporting” Esther is the same thing as being “employed” by Esther.

  8. D. Dial

    See what I said about high waders for b.s.

    Ms. Moor sure looks like the woman accompanying Manheimer at the CIBO luncheon. But if not, she still has shown a very consistant amount of support and /or connection beginning back in ’09.

    . https://www.google.com/search?source=ig&rlz=1G1GGLQ_ENUS239&q=“Honor+Moor”+”Esther+Manheimer”&oq;=”Honor+Moor”+”Esther+Manheimer”&gs_l=igoogle.3…349.2309.0.3851.7.4.0.3.0.2.570.1198.1j0j1j1j0j1.4.0…0.0…1ac.1.12.igoogle.nD8QuIcZx9M#q=”Honor+Moor”+Esther+Manheimer

  9. D. Dial

    Curious about the missing outrage by liberals during other recent public rants.

    Partial comment from Jan Davis regarding CB’s accusations;”. I am terribly disappointed Cecil has made allegations suggesting impropriety without the courtesy of even a phone call. My business has serviced ABC Board vehicles since 2006 providing quality service at market prices. ”

    Cecil Bothwell’s phone call to former Vice Mayor Joe Dunn….http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O60nXKxkxaI

    Cecil Bothwell to Mark Hunt & G. Smith;
    Bothwell, for one, was enraged by the Council vote. He lambasted Smith about Smith

    • Dionysis

      The remarks by Davis are far from a ‘rant’. Those of Bothwell are certainly closer to one, but there are some differences. To wit, Bothwell aimed his criticisms at sitting Councilmen, not as someone trying to get elected. Bothwell did not hurl ad hominem attacks (such as “Gordumb”); even the word ‘loser’ reflected a view that Hunt ‘losing’ any claim that he was concerned about the citizens (whether that is true or not is a sepaate question).

      And citing these quotes does not somehow make Miall’s intemperate remarks less so.

  10. sharpleycladd

    Given the composition of their respective student populations, it’s clear that Asheville City Schools do a better job of educating kids than Buncombe County Schools. Many people pay the supplement to send their kids to City schools from exurb addresses; virtually no City residents send their kids to County schools. The Asheville City Schools Foundation has an endowment that the do-nothings, build-nothings out in the County would love to get their hands on (voila, another water-system-like theft of assets!).

    Mr. Miall should run for County Commission or the State Legislature. By turning his back on our City schools, he’s proven himself unfit to stand for Mayor of Asheville.

  11. D. Dial

    This past few days ACT Political reporter Mark Barrett has written two articles which showed John Miall in a less than flattering or objective light. I was videotaping the 9.25.13 CIBO event, and in reviewing my footage I observed the political reporter lunching with Ms. Manheimer. It looks bad when a reporter openly socializes with a political candidate then writes unflattering and inflammatory stories about that politicians opponent.
    See footage here…Manheimer is shown at the beginning conversing with someone off camera, that individual is Mark Barrett…later Barrett is included in the video. This runs about six minutes.
    http://www.ustream.tv/recorded/39225156/highlight/417951

    • Dionysis

      “This past few days ACT Political reporter Mark Barrett has written two articles which showed John Miall in a less than flattering or objective light.”

      Just out of curiousity, can you cite anything in these two articles that is untrue, causing Maill to look bad? And what, in your opinion, is subjective on the part of the writer?

  12. bsummers

    ” Keith, I suggested she do full disclosure. Not shut up.”

    “My goodness the Democratic watercarriers are out in full force to practice shuttuppery this season.”

    Get the lesson here folks? When DD attacks someone, it is not “shuttuppery”, but anyone criticizes her antics, that is “shuttuppery”.

  13. D. Dial

    Dio, we deserve an unbiased press that reports the most important issues that came up in the debate. The original report by Barret started with inflammatory wording, that trumped up Miall’s joking remark about expanding 1-26 from the present 4 lanes to 8. He said (8 or 800) lets get it done, then went on to reference how long it took to get the Beaucatcher cut. Finally someone made the decisions and it was done…which opened up 240 around town and helped open up traffic heading north to US 81. Many other important issues came out in the meeting, so it’s disappointing that the press focused on the flippant 800 lanes remark that no one takes seriously.

    But I’d prefer that you view and make your own mind up about what might have served the public better. Here’s the video. Sorry for the bad audio, that was out of my control.
    http://www.ustream.tv/recorded/39225156

    • Dionysis

      I clicked on the link but no video. It appears as if it has been deleted, but it could be some other problem. I’ll try it again later.

      As an aside, regardless of what other local politicians may have said in the past, and in spite of your view that the news is slanted against Miall, you do realize he has shot himself in the foot with ill-advised and, frankly, somewhat juvenile insults, don’t you? Diversion will not make that fact go away.

  14. D. Dial

    Asking for full disclosure is “shutuppery”??? then posting easily researchable uncensored connections? (Which is not stalking Keith) B.S. aka bull sh_t.

    It’s a whole new world folks, your connections are available for all to see, so when you make references that appear to be one thing, if they are in fact another, it’s easy these days to trace that.

    • bsummers

      Resorting to a juvenile vulgar joke about my initials, rather than respond to the actual challenge, is all we need to know about your credibility, Ms. Dial.

      OK, “full disclosure”: how many organizations (other than URTV and the Asheville/Buncombe League of Women Voters) have you been kicked out of, Davyne?

      And are you going to apologize to Honor Moor for confusing her for someone else & falsely accusing her of trying to bully you at the CIBO lunch?

      Even in your video, it’s clear that neither Mark Barrett or Esther are eating, nor are they “socializing”. It’s a political event, and a reporter is talking to a candidate in front of a political audience before the debate begins. Are you going to acknowledge that you unfairly smeared a local reporter?

  15. T. Keith Thomson

    “It’s a whole new world folks, your connections are available for all to see, so when you make references that appear to be one thing, if they are in fact another, it’s easy these days to trace that.”

    We’ve all been warned, Ms Dial can shame you with a few mouse clicks. Be afraid, be very afraid.

    Back when there were a dozen, or 17 people running for council and we all became friends by the end of the Primary, I think we were a better, stronger, and healthier community. I am sure that we were better off 8, 12, 16 years ago, but in only that respect. We are more prosperous now, and our successful Downtown redevelopment is among the reasons for that.

  16. D. Dial

    ” I am sure that we were better off 8, 12, 16 years ago, but in only that respect. We are more prosperous now, and our successful Downtown redevelopment is among the reasons for that.”

    Most of the rooms I’ve been in during this election season have been asked “are you better off today”…for most people the answer is no.

  17. D. Dial

    “I clicked on the link but no video. It appears as if it has been deleted, but it could be some other problem. I’ll try it again later.”

    Dio, I double checked and the link works for me. So I am at a loss as to how it’s not working for you.

    • Dionysis

      I tried to access it during a break at work, and it could be something to do with security settings. I’ll watch it at home.

    • bsummers

      And it’s clear you’re not going to acknowledge the serious factual errors you’ve made in these latest attacks on innocent people, a pattern you’ve demonstrated before.

  18. D. Dial

    “As an aside, regardless of what other local politicians may have said in the past, and in spite of your view that the news is slanted against Miall, you do realize he has shot himself in the foot with ill-advised and, frankly, somewhat juvenile insults, don’t you? ”

    Time will tell on this assumption. It may have just increased name recognition, for those who are deeply unhappy with the present Council, and tired of Gordon’s surface persona of cheerleader in chief , while behind the scenes he sends out his water carriers to do his dirty work.

    Miall “manned up” and made an appropriate apology…..which is way more than Cecil has done with his numerous juvenile rants toward citizens asking questions or having concerns about the present tAPD situation, (key in “Mail to the Chief” here on MtnXp, or the one against Hunt and Smith over McKibbon/Basilica, or the one against former vice Mayor Joe Dunn.

    • Dionysis

      “Time will tell on this assumption.”

      It’s not an assumption, it is a matter of factual reality. And yes, it may increase name recognition, but not necessarily in a positive way.

  19. T. Keith Thomson

    At CIBO, Miall asked if we were better off now than we were four years ago, and said if we were we should vote for someone else. It should be on the video.

  20. Media Watcher

    Could Margaret Williams suggest to bsummers and D.Dial that they conduct their conversation by Facebook or even personal email? When an average reader (like me) sees that there are 32 comments on a story, he or she might think there is widespread community interest and a diversity of views being presented, maybe even some new information. Instead we find two people calling each other out and trading invective. Yes, the reader can skip it . . .but one keeps scrolling down and hoping a new voice may appear.

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