Monday, January 26, 2009

Std-Ex: Community Within a Community in Trouble

35-year-old housing and social services group "goes back to basics"
If this folds, I will basically put 105 mental health clients on the streets of Ogden without housing.

Ross Peacock, assistant director of PAAG
Community within a community in trouble
January 26, 2009

Top-notch Sam Cooper story in this morning's Standard-Examiner, regarding Problems Anonymous Action Group, Inc. (PAAG), an innovative and nationally recognised Ogden-based "housing program" ("therapeutic community" might be a more apt description) which has been separately described as a "stepping stone for drug and alcohol rehabilitation and work release programs for over 35 years."

Fantastic article, as we said, illustrating the ill effects of the current recession, as it potentially devastates those on the lowest rungs of the Emerald City socio-economic ladder. There's also plenty of tantalizing Ogden history for Ogden City history buffs, too. And for those political ideologues who are proponents of "privatization solutions," we believe Mr. Cooper's most excellent article demonstrates how PAAG has served as a fairly notable model for that... at least until now.

Definitely worth a read, we think.

Naturally, we suppose there are some cretins on the ninth floor of city hall who are probably crossing their fingers and hoping that this non-FOM* downtown property owner and social services provider (PAAG) goes belly-up.

For our own part, we don't believe that outcome would be at all favorable for Ogden.

And what say our gentle readers about all this?


*FOM = Friend of Matt (Godfrey)

Update 1/26/09 3:40 p.m. MT: We just now talked to PAAG Head Honcho Rhett Potter. Although PAAG is still reluctantly "pulling in [their] edges," and getting down to basics, PAAG still has a few programs it would like to continue, such as its lunch and dinner programs.

Big-hearted WCF readers should not hesitate to call PAAG at (801) 621-2215 to find out what they can donate. Non-perishable foodstuffs and cash seem to be the first items on the agenda. PAAG is an IRS 501(c)(3) qualified as a tax exempt charitable organization, as we understand it btw, for those interested in the individual tax implications of your hopefully generous donations.


Little Bobby said...

What's wrong with 105 mental patients being released into the Ogden community, I ask.

It'll be like a little speedbump.

Chief Greiner will arrest them as vagrants, and Godfey will tap into his multimillions "slush fund" to usher these losers outta town with a one-way bus ticket.

Don't think for a minute that Blessed Boss Godfrey isn't looking after your interests.

Ogden City will soon become the ultimate place for billionaires to come home to rest.

Elmer Fudd said...

Excuse me, Little Bobbie.

I was born and raised here, unlike you.

The question: When are you and your carpetbagger daddy planning to leave town?

Earlier would be better than later, and would be more prudent and safer for you, in my estimation.

Machster said...

To be clear...I was not born in Ogden or even reared ("raised" is what we do with crops) here. But I am interested in seeing Ogden prosper, with all due respect to "Elmer Fudd".

I think I caught a bit of facitiousness in "Little Bobby's" comment above.

I read the excellent STd Ex. piece and could only think of the sadness the loss, or at least denigration verging upon demise, of a very worth while humanitarian effort.

Especially given all the yearly overly generous donations to non charitable organizations such as the Trapper's Trail and Northern Utah Boy Scouts from the Combined Federal Campaign and especially the United Way Campaigns.

The United Way has traditionally given its largest share of funds to a non-charity. The Boy Scouts of America is a lot of things, but a charity it is not.

Yet PAAG has suffered through decades of strife due to a lack of charitable donations?! Corporate charitable giving drives focus on charitable organizations.

Oh, by the way, the United Way was being manipulated by a guy who was at the head of the BSA prior to taking on the United Way for exploitation in Utah. He obfuscated his office expenses in order to claim a false administrative cost ratio and lie about the facts. I know, I served on the executive board for a term and resigned in protest.

I agree with Rudi about PAAG being a model of self help and privately run effective therapy for those who, without such support, will very likely have to depend upon prisons for their welfare.

I may be all wet and downright wrong about this, but at least you know how I feel about it.

RudiZink said...

Great post, Machster. There's no way that Ogden City can let a great program like PAAG "fold."

Curmudgeon said...


You wrote: To be clear...I was not born in Ogden or even reared ("raised" is what we do with crops) here. But I am interested in seeing Ogden prosper.

I'm curious, Machster, why the "but"?

I frequently see... not just here, almost everywhere... someone write a letter to the editor about some local matter, beginning with the news that the letter writer has "lived all my life" where ever "here" is for him, and, often, that his ancestors came here with the first Spanish moving up the Rio Grande, or were here before that, or trekked across the prairie on the Oregon/California/Mormon/Santa Fe trails, or came on the Mayflower.... take your pick. And the writer expects his views to be given more weight because of that.

Always struck me as odd. One of the many good things about the US of A is the citizenship rule: you move from Kansas to Utah, you are all but instantly a Utahn, and need make no apologies about your having arrived recently, and need offer no deference [at the ballot box for example] to those whose ancestors came in '47. When a Utahn moves to Kansas, he's a Kansan by right of that fact. No application forms necessary, and only a minimal waiting period.

Nor should someone who has "lived here all my life" necessarily have any more or better information, or ideas to be more respected about current civic or state policy than someone whose been here a few years. [I, arriving in a new place, defer to the locals for a year or two until I figure out who is who and where the local political bodies are buried. But not after that. It's my town and my state once I unpack every bit as much as it is theirs, and not one iota less.]

So, Machster... why the "I wasn't born or raised her but?" Just curious.

Bill C. said...

Curm, you being a history scholar should know history matters. That's not to deny anyone the right to their opinion, but the background and history of an area is relavent. I like your waiting period idea, but it's not fool proof. Some histories take far longer to aquaint yourself with, and even longer to sort out.
On the other hand, even someone that arrived here yesterday can tell you an urban gondola to exactly nowhere is a stupid idea.

Bill C. said...

Machster, we find ourselves in agreement once again. My comment to Curm was in no way a shot at you, as you know.
I did however want to caution you as to the use of the term, reared.
Cavendish has been lurking on this forum lately, I know because he left a rather jarbled pantywaiste threatening message on my answering machine recently. I am quite sure he is very much inclined to mis-interpret the word reared, for him it has a complete different meaning.

Curmudgeon said...


Of course history matters. I did not suggest the contrary in any way. I did say someone's having lived in a community all his life, or who is a descendant of those who've been here generations, does not have any inherent claim to have his opinion more respected or presumed to be more informed than the opinions of later comers. That one of the nice things about the US of A is that a fairly recently arrived citizen of Utah [or any other state] has precisely the same rights as one who was born here, with not an iota of difference between the two. And I would not, if I were you Bill, want to defend the proposition that people who have been born and raised in a state are necessarily better informed, even about their state's history and current issues, than people of more recent vintage.

RudiZink said...

"I am quite sure he [Cavenndish] is very much inclined to mis-interpret the word reared, for him it has a complete different meaning."


Too funny!

Funny but definitely true.

Thanks for the advanced lesson in Godfreyite linguistics!

Machster said...

Curm, Bill C. & Rudi,
I read the following post by:

"Elmer Fudd said...
Excuse me, Little Bobbie.

I was born and raised here, unlike you.

The question: When are you and your carpetbagger daddy planning to leave town?

Earlier would be better than later, and would be more prudent and safer for you, in my estimation."

The above post struck me as an intellectually bankrupt comment without merit. However; (as a substitute for "but") believing as you and Bill C. seem to agree...opinions are not restricted to "natives" of any locale or political stripe.

As for the heads up about "Cavendish" likely having another interpretation of the grammatically correct English term for child upbringing versus crop production, tell "Cavendish" he is a sick fuck, an "eedgit" (Irish for idiot) and very likely a latent homosexual, in addition to being an ignorant asswipe. Now there's another clear opinion...

Thanks Bill and Rudi.

Hope this helps.

Bill C. said...

Low blow Curm, you and I both know that here in Utah History is a most fascinating phenomenon. Well documentented by culture, filtered, washed and well censored.
It's amazing that most common folk, born and reared (agh) here, think it starts in 1847.
They seem to think our pioneer ancestors fleeing persecution came to this uninhabitable wilderness and made the desert bloom. Any indigenous people the encountered, mear transient temporary squatters with no valid claim to the land.
Fact is, this land provided a great life for quite a large population for thousands of years, and I can't help but think that vast time span pretty much establishes a more valid claim of ownership than any my forefathers conjured up. Truth is the establishment of Utah was no more moral than that of the Carolinas or any other place you can name.
I must admit though, it's fascinating to dig into and discover all the overlooked, hidden truths, you know, just beneath the veil of our misplaced self-righteousness.

Truth Seeker said...

Forefathers...pioneers or refugees? Seems the "Latter" is true.

Moroni McConkie said...

Curm has taken to spelling it "UTAHN."

Now THAT'S native.

Curmudgeon said...


After spendin' 31 years down on de' bayou, cher, typing "y'all," I jes' nat'rally got in the habit of savin' letters when typing.... [grin]

ozboy said...

That's the problem with you short cut takers and carpetbaggers. The proper term is "Utahnians". Yes it takes a few extra key strokes, but what is that compared to being correctamundo (another highly abused word by you short cut artists)?

Shivers me timbers said...

We ignorant Southerners "jest luv it" when we hears the Utahn or Utahnian native speak...:

"Those ones"
"We was"
"I seen it"
"I squooze it"


Shivers me timbers!

Curmudgeon said...



Oz, step away from the DVD player. We are going to take your "Happy Days" DVDs now and burn them. This is an intervention. Step away from the DVD player and no one will get hurt....

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