Conservative blogger blames Otter for Idaho prison woes

Bill Turner says "taxpayers should be furious" about troubles at the Idaho Department of Correction, including a civil rights lawsuit over the management of a private prison, double-billing by an IT vendor and the hiring of a former Otter staffer as a top manager.

In a posting titled, "Department of Corrections needs correcting," Turner urges readers to call Gov. Butch Otter and complain. Turner calls himself a "gonzo journalist" and writes as "Boise Conservative Examiner" for

"Idaho taxpayers should be furious over this," writes Turner. "Idaho teachers, who are underpaid and being let go at an alarming rate should be even more outraged as the education budget was raided this past legislative session. Could those millions of wasted dollars helped ease the tax burden in Idaho? Could it have been used as tax breaks to bring business and jobs to Idaho?"

Otter spokesman Jon Hanian declined comment.

Turner cites the recent hiring of Josh Tewalt as deputy director of the Bureau of Prisons, writing, "Mr. Tewalt has been arrested three times for Driving Under the Influence. He is thirty one years old and has no college education. Aside from being familiar with how the grey bar hotel works, from having seen the inside of a cell, Tewalt has no education, training or background in corrections. It appears that Mr. Tewalt’s only qualifications are being associated with Governor Butch Otter and former Governor Kempthorne. Wow. Nice work if you can get it."

Turner also cites problems with a multi-million-dollar inmate tracking system plagued by delays and what the department alleges was double-billing by its hand-picked contractor.

Writes Turner: "(O)ne can conclude that the problems that have befallen Idaho’s prison system are systemic and start in the Governors office."

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Conservative Blogger

He sounds almost rational. Could it be he's gone from being conservative to progressive?

Welcome to the light CB!

That was conservative

If millions of taxpayer dollars are being wasted on prisons and education is paying the price for it, yeah conservatives are going to be upset. If the prisons were cut to the bone just like education was, it would be a different situation.

I have to agree. I question Otter's ability to manage the state

government when he makes decisions like these.

Big Red

The problem with modern day conservatives of the republican ilk is that they are only conservative when it comes to the democrats issues. If republicans are in charge, they have absolutely no problem with spending money they don't have and cutting revenue at the same time.

A true conservative should be angry about corrections spending. It is spending ran amok that doesn't really end up serving society in any meaningful way for the cost involved. At least education has an obvious and demonstrated benefit.

Conservatism in and of itself is not bad. I would consider myself conservative. However, conservatism tied to political demagoguery misses the point most of the time.

It's Time for Republicans to Clean their own House

Conservatives need to get together and decide which direction their party wants to go. This is not a Republican/Democrat fight--it is about the way the current leadership is using/misusing its power.

We have seen republicans removed from committee leadership positions because they did not vote the way the leadership wanted. We have seen too many people appointed for positions simply because they have ties with other politicians (Luna-Otter-Luna, for one example). How about running a campaign on one platform knowing that a completely different plan is being crafted behind closed doors? Last, but certainly not least, there are too many ties between campaign contributors and introducing and passing legislation that benefits those contributors.

This is not a shining time for Idaho conservatives, though a few at the top seem to think the sun will never stop shining. I am seeing more and more of my conservative friends shaking their heads--something I thought I would never see.

It's time for those who can to step forward and do something to set this ship in the right direction.

That's the sound of the men...

(working on the privately owned, state-funded chain gang)


Just because it's a WORLD wide web doesn't mean anybody past Jordan Valley cares! Get drunk and give us that crappy singing voice we missed.

Since When?

Since when is the toiling for billionares (education reform) considered a partisan issue? Since when is schilling for private prison corporations a partisan issue? Since when is the appointment of unqualified drinking buddies a partisan issue? Leadership of the Idaho Repubican party believes they can do anything they please because they know re-election is a given. This kind of absolute dominance at the ballot box has led to absolute power to rule Idahoans as they see fit. Notice I used the word "rule" instead of govern. When you have government by decree, as we apparently do, that is absolute rule. It's time for Republicans to seek some accountability from elected officials instead of blindly following their leaders off a cliff. It looks like Bill Turner is one of only a few conservatives that understand this.

Isn't this the same blogger

that has been saying Otter's Project 60 is a plan to sell all of Idaho to China??? Yeah, real credible source there...way to go Statesman for lowering your credibility another notch.

Are you saying he has made

Are you saying he has made errors in this statement?

Reporting the news is their JOB. not really a gap...


Just because it's a WORLD wide web doesn't mean anybody past Jordan Valley cares! Get drunk and give us that crappy singing voice we missed.

You must work for Fox news

If you don't like the message, shoot the messenger.

No fox has given me news in years, not even business news.


Too literal? I'm sorry you feel I have a Literal Agenda!

Boise State Football

Just because BSU recruits from the state of Texas doesnt make the recruit faster. Go Vandals


look for the litle man on the door, not the little woman. We only rent beer.

You Vandals make it too easy sometimes.

Someone else's editorial opinion. . .

is news?


Somehow, I mistakenly thought this was a blog.....

Maybe they are RECRUITING...


Just because it's a WORLD wide web doesn't mean anybody past Jordan Valley cares! Get drunk and give us that crappy singing voice we missed.

Otter never answers for his mistakes

He's off riding into the sunset with Miss Lori and Mike Gwartney.

That's the most reality you will get from this elitist.


He's a dorky politician, not an 'elitist'


Just because it's a WORLD wide web doesn't mean anybody past Jordan Valley cares! Get drunk and give us that crappy singing voice we missed.

Butch is the elite, unfortunately,

in Idaho. Obviously you have missed the point.
Somehow mormons forgive his whiskey soaked chew time and time again.
So very sad.

govt salary

Tewalt $56,000 a year without a college degree at age 30.

Hey, considering the cost of college, who says you have to "Go On"?
You just gotta know WHO to "go to".

Reinke- Dept Director, no college and 123,000/year + PERSI and benefits.

Go On?

Where are the usual suspects?

Why so silent, so called "conservatives"?

I posted a reply

Right up there at the top. You can't squander money on prisons while you're cutting education. That should be scrutinized just as much as the education budget and dealt with accordingly.

Squander or not...

one thing is certain, if you cut funding for education enough, you'll have to spend more on prisons.

I'm sure W is relieved nobody has blamed him.


Kevin Richert is scared of me for some stupid reason and I really don't care.

We should be used to it...

it's just more of the same from the "cowboy mafia".....