Saturday, February 17, 2018
Opinion

Ruth: Kelley's privacy crusade: Look at me

Our own huckstering, wanna-be faux socialite Jill Kelley wants to recast herself as the Angela Merkel of Tampa Bay — in Christian Louboutin red lacquered stiletto heels.

In a recent Wall Street Journal column headlined "How the Government Spied on Me," Kelley bemoaned her plight after she set in motion events that led to the resignation of Gen. David Petraeus as the director of the Central Intelligence Agency amid disclosures he was having an affair with his biographer, Paula Broadwell.

In her twisted interpretation of the scandal, you would think Kelley was more hunted than Richard Kimble, Butch and Sundance and whoever holds the career-killing title of the No. 2 leader of al-Qaida.

A year ago, Petraeus' reputation imploded, from distinguished military commander and the nation's head spook to the country's head schlemiel. That happened after Kelley contacted the FBI upon receiving anonymous emails telling her to stay away from the General Halftrack of coo-coo-ca-choo.

Kelley knew Petraeus from his time at MacDill Air Force Base, when he was invited to soirees at her Bayshore Boulevard manse. So anxious was Kelley to ingratiate herself to anyone in uniform, it is a wonder Sgt. Bilko, McHale's Navy the Dirty Dozen weren't invited to roam around the front yard munching on crab claws. She argues her privacy was invaded by the black helicopter crowd after the FBI ignored her specific order to only look "at one threatening email we received and only that email." Good luck with a social-climbing butterfly telling the FBI how to do its job.

It never occurred to the aspiring Pearl Mesta of the Big Guava that her call to law enforcement implicated the head of the world's foremost intelligence agency? It never dawned on her she was creating a national security crisis? Did she truly believe the FBI would confine its investigation to a single, anonymous email?

Kelley whined the FBI probe led to an "intrusive investigation without just cause." Who wrote this drivel? Baghdad Bob?

This wasn't as if the feds were being tasked to investigate how the Kelley family's cat got stuck in a tree. The emails (plural, mind you) mentioned the director of the Central Intelligence Agency. It didn't take Dr. Phil to figure out the missives just might be related to an extra-marital affair involving the Gen. Jack D. Ripper of rustling sheets, though it should be noted there has never been any suggestion Kelley was the other woman.

Intrusive? You betcha. Without just cause? What part of potential compromise of national security does Kelley not grasp?

At some point Kelley's name made its way into the news media. You cannot be the pivotal player in bringing down one of the most powerful figures in the United States government and expect reporters aren't going to notice.

But nothing tops Kelley's delusional logic that her experience somehow compares with recent revelations the National Security Agency tapped into the communications of American citizens.

This is a bit like a Kardashian du jour kvetching about the omnipresence of paparazzi.

With her Wall Street Journal piece Kelley tried to rebrand herself as a crusader for privacy rights against oppressive big government intrusion. "I hope my family's story is a case study about the damage that can be caused by the government's electronic overreach," she wrote with all the sincerity of Jerry Springer.

The NSA's abuses notwithstanding, if Kelley wants to find the culprit who compromised her privacy she should look in a mirror. It was Kelley who courted the society pages. It was Kelley who schmoozed her way into having virtually unfettered access to MacDill. And it was Kelley who first invited the FBI into her life.

She is no more a "case study" of government snooping than the Miami Dolphins' Ritchie Incognito is a role model for civility.

Kelley was well on her away to achieving the phony privacy she claims to crave, only to churn up the story all over again in the pages of a national newspaper. Tampa's Princess of Pâté was willing to violate her privacy again — for a chintzy scoop.

Comments
Editorial: Buckhorn should not appeal verdict in firefighterís case

Editorial: Buckhorn should not appeal verdict in firefighterís case

The city of Tampa should have taken Tanja Vidovic seriously from the start when the Tampa firefighter complained about her treatment in the workplace. Now that a jury and judge have spoken, itís time for City Hall to cut its losses, learn from its mi...
Published: 02/15/18
Updated: 02/16/18
Editorial: CareerSource troubles mount as public trust drops

Editorial: CareerSource troubles mount as public trust drops

The dark cloud enveloping Tampa Bayís job placement centers keeps growing. There are accusations of forged documents, evidence of nepotism and concerns about grossly inflated performance numbers that could be tied to receiving more public money and b...
Published: 02/15/18
Updated: 02/16/18
Editorials: Prayers and platitudes after shootings arenít enough

Editorials: Prayers and platitudes after shootings arenít enough

Even before the victims of another mass shooting at another public school were identified, Gov. Rick Scott, Attorney General Pam Bondi, state legislators and members of Congress rushed to South Florida or to social media to offer their thoughts and p...
Published: 02/15/18
Editorial: DCF review should get to the bottom of Hillsborough foster care issues

Editorial: DCF review should get to the bottom of Hillsborough foster care issues

The Florida Department of Children and Families is right to call for a timely and "comprehensive" review of Hillsborough Countyís foster care system. Though the probe is a reaction to a recent case involving a child who was left unattended, the revie...
Published: 02/14/18

A Washington Post editorial: Modernize 911 calling before it becomes an emergency

This Friday marks the 50th anniversary of the first 911 emergency call placed in the United States. Since then, uncounted lives have been saved and people helped. It has been a great accomplishment of government.But even as an estimated 240 million 9...
Published: 02/13/18
Updated: 02/14/18
Editorial: Scott, Cabinet cannot be trusted on felonsí voting rights

Editorial: Scott, Cabinet cannot be trusted on felonsí voting rights

Gov. Rick Scott always has been grudging and imperious about restoring the voting rights of felons, requiring them to wait for years before begging the governor and Cabinet to be recognized again as citizens. That arrogance is on full display in a le...
Published: 02/13/18
Another voice: ĎDreamersí donít know whom to trust on immigration

Another voice: ĎDreamersí donít know whom to trust on immigration

Immigrants brought into this country illegally as children by their parents may be wondering whom to trust. The political theater being played out in Washington hasnít settled the status of either the "Dreamers" or the estimated 11 million other undo...
Published: 02/13/18
Editorial: Promising Tampa stadium site for Rays

Editorial: Promising Tampa stadium site for Rays

While it came as little surprise, the Tampa Bay Raysí selection of an Ybor City site near Tampaís Channel District as the best spot for a new stadium is an important milestone in the effort to keep Major League Baseball. Now comes the hard work of de...
Published: 02/09/18
Editorial: Senate should reject Houseís attack on public schools

Editorial: Senate should reject Houseís attack on public schools

After pummeling public education so soundly last year, itís little surprise Republican state legislators are mounting another attack on public schools, teachers and local districts. The mammoth education bill passed by the House last week is loaded w...
Published: 02/08/18
Updated: 02/13/18
Editorial: TIA expansion a reminder to aim high

Editorial: TIA expansion a reminder to aim high

Thereís nothing particularly exciting about a tram, much less a rental car facility. But the new projects at Tampa International Airport set to open Wednesday are a sign of confidence in the bay area ó and a challenge to improve regional transportati...
Published: 02/08/18
Updated: 02/09/18