The last couple of days have given us a prime example of how the main stream media attempts to manipulate elections. The following stories were posted about Lake County Board District 16 Candidate, Michael Carbone.
The charges/implications levied against Carbone in the articles is that he changed his name to hide his past, which contained several arrests. This is ludicrous on its face given the intense vetting of candidates these days and given the details provided below.
The individual specifics are covered in the articles, all to varying degrees, with the Sun-Times details being the most inaccurate. These inaccuracies could, and probably should, lead to a libel suit. When you dig deeper into the arrests EVERY charge was either dismissed or reduced, some with supervision, but none with any jail time.
I have known about all of the information brought up in long before these articles. Michael has made no secret of his past and states often he is not perfect and has made mistakes. Many times I have heard him discuss these mistakes and how he turned his life around after his DUI in 2006, which was over 6 years ago.
Turning your life around is always hard work and many famous people have had issues in the past, yet overcome them. In fact the last 3 Presidents have done this, Obama with his marijuana, Bush his alcohol issues, and Bill Clinton with the famous "I didn't inhale". Changing your life is a hallmark of our great country and should be applauded as inspirational to others.
The circumstances and reasoning for Carbone's name change is a moving story. Michael was a Carbone until the age of 1, then his name was changed to Jorudd by his step-father. Michael's grandfather actually adopted him and raised him after his father died in a fire. Michael's grandfather's dying wish was for Michael to carry on the Carbone family name. This is the reason Michael changed his name in 2009 back to Carbone. It was to honor his grandfathers request.
As a side note, I find it very telling that Carbone's opponent makes fun of the fact Michael was adopted and that he wanted to honor his grandfather stating, "I’m a little unclear if he were to win — how would he take the seat? It’s not his real name."
To provide a little more background as to why these articles are an example of the press' attempts to manipulate elections, here is a simple timeline:
- Carbone runs for School Board in 2009 filing his paperwork with both the Carbone and Jorudd names as required. Several papers run stories on the race and never discussed the name change even with it in the paperwork.
- December 2010, D46 Board members Sue Facklam, Karen Wienert, Ray Millington and Superintendent Ellen Correll were researching the Carbone/Jorudd name change and went to Lake County Superintendent of Schools Roycealee Woods in an attempt to get Carbone thrown off the school board. [Emails attached]
Update 1: The Board referenced in the email is NICASA. Ray Millington, Roycealee Woods and State's Attorney Mike Waller sit on this board. Yes, the same State's Attorney who refused to prosecute Sue Facklam.
Update 2: After publishing this article I was notified of another possible reason for the failure to prosecute Sue Facklam was due to her possible family ties to Circuit Judge Margaret J. Mullen.
- You can review many more of false accusations and the political games of D46 school board members in attempts to discredit Carbone by reading Michael Carbone: Example of a True Public Servant
- September 2012, Daily Herald reporter called to discuss the arrests mentioned in these articles. When asked, Carbone, sent them court and traffic records, which included both Carbone and Jorudd. Again, Carbone transparently discussed the details of each incident. In addition when asked about not answering the question about arrests on the questionnaire, Carbone stated he wanted to be able to discuss all the incidents during their endorsement interviews where it could be more open and transparent.
- The Daily Herald never held an endorsement interview for the 16th Board District. This shows editorial staff made a decision without all the facts. A clear violation of journalistic ethics. [This needs verification, but from speaking with several people, this was the ONLY race where no endorsement session was held]
- September 2012, Carbone receives a letter from the Illinois State Bar Association to cease and desist property tax appeals but has yet to provide any reasons for the request. This is still ongoing and no information has been returned as to the actual complainant yet to get this resolved. [Note timing, just over 30 days to the election]
- October 2012, Ray Millington, D46 Board President again uses the Carbone name change in an effort to challenge Michael's Real Estate business.
- Update: October 10, 2012 The Daily Herald published a Letter to the Editor from a "Kathryn Mullen Idlas" in which she berates Carbone. This is another Mullens attempting a political character assassination of Michael Carbone right before an election. If anyone can provide the details of familial relationship to Sue Facklam, please do so in the comments.
- Week of October 22, 2012, Sun times and other reporters start calling Carbone about the name change and past records.
- October 25/26 stories published with 12 days until the election.
From the timeline, all of these news outlets had access to the name change and public records since 2009 when Michael first ran. In addition they had the name change information with the email scandals of 2011, but never referenced or reviewed it. I assume they were busy looking into the felonies committed by board member Sue Facklam and all the unethical behavior committed by Superintendent Correll and other school board members. Lastly, the Daily Herald had all the records since September, which Carbone himself provided; never held an endorsement session to discuss the issues; and waited until 12 days out to release these political hit pieces.
The timing is clear. The News outlets' editorial boards are doing what they can to manipulate the upcoming election. They are trying to politically destroy a candidate, Michael Carbone. The media is supposed to just report the facts (truth) instead of manipulate a story for political purposes. We have seen far too many media outlets doing the past few years do this same thing. What has happened to journalistic integrity? Why is there so much bias in the media? Why do far too many journalist no longer seek out both sides to find out all the facts to be reported? Why is the press trying to manipulate the voters?
Carbone has done all he can fighting for transparency, lower property taxes and fiscal sanity. Carbone has stood up to all the intimidation, threats and bullying from the school district union, the school superintendent, fellow school board members and a minority of anonymous commenters on these news outlets. Michael Carbone is a true public servant fighting for the taxpayers against some overwhelming attacks. From the timeline above, this is effort has gone beyond the political into an attempt at the personal destruction of Carbone's very livelihood.