Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Robert Wilmers Resurfaces Clueless and Unapologetic as Ever

 "If I knew for a certainty that a man was coming to my house with the conscious design of doing me good, I should run for my life," Thoreau said. 

Well don't look now friends but our old friend Bordeaux Bob Wilmers the M&T zillionaire is looking to help out the Buffalo Schools again. Again? you ask. When did the old bluenose ever help us out in the first place? To which I respond: think fired attendance teachers, think record low morale among teachers, think lowering the graduation rate  --which should all bring back a traumatic image similar to the one seen here: 

James Williams - Worst Super in B-lo Schools History

Yes friends in case it slipped your mind Robert Wilmers, CEO of M&T Bank stepped up and hired the search firm that brought us the Human Ebola Virus in a suit -- none other than  one James Williams. And if you don't recall exactly how that all came about, the board at the time was busy with shopping trips and out of town restauranteering so when Wilmers offered so magnanimously to pay for the "search" they shifted from one ham to another, looked up from their travel brochures and said Thanks.

Never mind the destruction Williams rained down on Dayton Ohio where he provoked a strike, opened and closed more charters than Paladino did Rite Aides, copped himself a no show gig on the staff at Wayne State and left the district with an $18 million deficit that he was able to keep on the DL until he was long gone and there was nothing they could do to him. It goes without saying that Williams was on a mission to break the teacher's union in Dayton. While he failed in breaking the union he managed to drag morale down to his level. Williams' departure from Dayton was akin to the celebration seen when Dorothy's house landed on the wicked witch. Somehow Wilmers looked at the chaos and mayhem Williams inflicted on Dayton and fell in love -- in a patrician aristocratic detached way of course, but just the same. It was love. 

The same board members who were preoccupied bilking the taxpayers for pre-board meeting buffets, trips to warm sunny places for conferences that took a back seat to shopping and feedbagging, were only too happy to rubber stamp Wilmer's selection and the rest, as we say, is history.

Do you ever wonder why Robert Wilmers has never stepped to a podium anywhere, yachting cap in hand and apologized to the students of Buffalo Public Schools, their parents, teachers, administrators, assistant, custodians and bus drivers for the wrecking ball that was James Williams? He never has that I know of and the teacher hating, charter loving Buffalo News has never held his Weejuns to the flames and demanded an accounting of the worst hiring the Buffalo Schools have ever endured. You know why Wilmers has never once said he was sorry?

Because he's not sorry. 

Wilmers might be sorry the way wife beating, crack smoking celebrities are sorry -- sorry they got caught. In Bordeaux Bob's case it's more of a matter of being sorry that Williams was unable to shatter BTF, shutter schools by the dozens and bulldoze the landscape for a New Orleans-like all charter zone. It doesn't seem to have registered with 1% Wilmers that his interference in matters he is grossly unfit to interfere in caused a lot of pain and hardship for a lot of people. (Ask fellow blogger Maria Rosa about her attendance job) Wilmers just doesn't seem to grasp that a toxic storm like the one his appointee James Williams inflicted on Buffalo for 6 years can ruin a person's life or destroy a kid's chance at an education. Those of us who held the horses for Williams reign of terror know otherwise. And rather than beg forgiveness of the people whose quality of life he destroyed for the better part of 6 years Wilmers simply faded into the background for a bit. 

Now we hear he is planning an invite only Charterpalooza at Canisius, a private college -- how appropos. We can all be sure the event will be little more than a snowglobe of like minded Venture Philanthropists echo chambering each other's nonsense and patting themselves on the back for the civic mindedness of their profiteering. Be assured "Accountabilty Jim" Sampson will be there, fresh from shutting down any discussion of his shameless theft of tax dollars when he was CEO-ing at Gateway. Accountability as we all know is only for the little people right Jim?  Likewise, Larry Leisure Class Quinn will represent. He's the classy board of ed member who described Lafayette teachers as "clowns he didn't want to meet with anyway." And of course, in an ironic twist that would have Du Maupassant spinning like a lathe in his grave, Carl Paladino will likewise be seated at ringside. Ironic, because Paladino's open hostility to James Williams and his endless crusade to run Williams out of town will all be forgotten by Wilmers. The greater good, you see, and the flakes of gold dust twirling through the air in the 1%ers snowglobe of privilege and prosperity will wash away any old grudges and hard feelings. There is just too much money to be made here for these two AARP tortoises to get into a shell cracking contest with each other. 

Robert Wilmers doesn't know squat about education. The best thing he could do for the Buffalo Public Schools would be to focus on his chateau and his vineyards in the Bordeaux region.  We already have a bumper crop of arrogant, elderly bastards who think their checkbooks give them authority to run any damned thing they please, including the schools. Let's not forget Mr. Gioia and his fellow Brahmin who emptied out their golfbags and came up with a half million dollar bribe to get rid of Pamela Brown. 

Wilmers and his army of flunkies like to throw the phrase "Promise" around a lot. There's a Promise school and a Promise neighborhood. I think they even promised something to Bennett too then reneged when the Promise Principal they imported turned out to be a sociopath who had no idea how to run a school. For my dollars, the only Promise we need from guys like Robert Wilmers is his Promise to go away, buy another yacht or vineyard leave education to the professionals. 


  1. Watch those AARP cracks Sean!

    An Oldster

  2. I've been getting their mailings for 3 years now.