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  1. #26

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    RE: Best racers banned in Sacramento

    ORIGINAL: airnutguy

    I have stayed out of this discusion but the truth seems to be missing. John Casey asked for the Presidents resignation due to illegal activity as defined by the State of Californis Corporation Bylaws. The members have the right to remove any board member at will at any time. John then had his membership terminated. A founding members rejoined the club to help try to get things set properly. He was terminated and his home and wife were threatened. I became involved in an attempt to provide the leadership with a solid understanding as to there failings under the California Corporation code but had my membership terminated. My action were in the interst of getting the THRUTH known by all members. After providing the AMA with first hand documentation as to the inappropriate acts of some members, I was served a termination letter that said "Your continuted participation in the SAM club was no longer desireable" . The last warbird race that I flew in ended with my aircraft and the 2 other members of my team all being "Shot Down" by a member of SAm. He was protected by the board and that is the real truth. Since that date I was told that could no longer enter the event or even pit for someone. But remeber that I was the victim here. The only thing I did wrong was to try to defend myself, my team mates and my business. AND also I am a Hobby Shop owner, does this kind of activity help there club? If you really want to talk FACTS just call me (916) 332-4661 Jeff Weiss[X(]
    Since you brought it up...what was the Pres. supposedly doing that Casey requested his resignation? A lot of your response doesn't seem to make sense either.

    You said,"due to illegal activity as defined by the State of Californis Corporation Bylaws". Bylaws are the corporations (in this case the club). Did he do something illegal or that was not allowed because of the clubs bylaws.

    Speaking of bylaws...what are the rules to remove a Pres. from the club? Did Casey go by those rules and did other members agree with him?

    The bottom line is if you guys are in the right than I would expect the majority of members to agree with you and vote accordingly. A lot of this just doesn't add up.


  2. #27

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    RE: Best racers banned in Sacramento

    I wish we had the oppurtunity to lay this out step by step, but on a forum as this, to much is inferned and not said. The bottom line. The Sacramento Area Modelers are a California Corporation. There are laws that govern how an organization like this must conduct it self by. The bylaws are not in line with California State law. No proxy, no quorum, no first ammendment right to free speach. If the President doesn't like what you have to say he will dismiss you and ajourn the meeting. In fact the "New" bylaws say and I quote "The President shall preside over all meetings. He shall not be held to any Parlimentary procedure and his disisions are binding on all members". This sounds way to much like government by a dictator and nothing I wish to be governed by. The menmbers that make the dicisions are a small minority, about 25, out of what was over 300. But due to the few controling the press, (club newsletter) and those in power influencing the rest of the members, the club is run by these few and held hostage. The majority of the members have turned a deaf ear to the problems or just don't care. The SAM site is the only club in Northern California that has a secure position on its land. All other clubs in our area have terminal leases and will , or have been shut down. These guys will not allow for free expression of its members, They will not allow control Line, R/C cars, Aero Tow gliders , Jets, or Giant scale operation to be developed on "their" site. I really dont' think that this is in the best interest of the hobby, but it does allow their below average acitivity to seem to be the only game in town. The warbird races we use to have were great fun and were attended by hundereds of people. The last race had slightly over 1 dozen spectators, what does that say?

    As one of the "regulated" racers, I have an issue with the rules being changed so the "below" average can compete at a higher level than their skill would normally determine. I ran Nelson .40 engines for years and never once had a "control" problem that could be considered a safty issue. The fact that the engine was not throttled made it produce more power. It was equiped with a throttle cut as per AMA Safty rules. The fact that the engine was mush faster than what the others could muster, made it a target for regulation. If you want to compete, then go buy a Nelson to compete or find something better. Any way, it is past history but the record should be set staight. Amyone who cares can call me (916) 332-4661

  3. #28
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    RE: Best racers banned in Sacramento

    You can read the "other side's" opinion from Jimmy Skids and judge for yourselves...

    Jimmy could have been a bit more accurate about John's role with the courts. John only filed a small claims suit twice asking for the maximum allowable of $5,000.00 to cover costs to join and travel to a different club for the rest of his modeling career since SAM's board expelled him without membership knowledge or approval.

    Jimmy probably doesn’t know these facts, but what actually happened is the Small Claim’s judge came up with a resolution that would, hopefully, appeal to both parties and save the club from paying the suit money even though John’s rights were violated and the SAM board acted in bad faith – this also stated in the finding of the court. The judgment asked the SAM board to reinstate John’s membership. There was a drop-dead date in which SAM’s board could appeal the decision - which they did. (Refer Attachment 1)

    The appeal landed the case in the Small Claims Division of Superior Court. Again, with both parties present, the appeals judge was of the opinion that the previous judge had no statutory authorization to order the SAM’s board to reinstate John’s membership. The court only had the authority to grant the amount requested in the judgment – namely $5000. The appeals judge turned to John and asked him what he wanted the court to decide on. John was feeling justified from the previous judgment and no longer intended to empty the SAM coffer. So he replied, perhaps unwittingly, please enforce the judgment of the Small Claims Court. The appeals judge said he couldn’t because the small claims judgment, which asked for reinstatement, was out of their statutory authority. So the case was dismissed. (Refer Attachment 2)

    John refiled in Small Claims again, different judge this time, who decided SAM did not have to pay John Casey any money. There was no explanation given by the court for this decision. It’s possible that the decision was based on the testimony of the SAM board representative who claimed John could fly at the site as a “guest” at any time paying the $5.00 daily use fee. I have to chuckle at this when I consider the real mindset of the SAM board as stated in the attached letter. (Refer Attachments 3 and 4)

    I'm not sure why Jimmy thinks John lost three times in court, but I'm fairly certain that when Jimmy reads the judgment after John re-filed, he may think this last ruling is a win for SAM’s board and a loss for John. Using that same line of thinking, I would wonder what he would say about another judgment whereby a terminated SAM member doesn’t owe SAM any money because the court had no jurisdiction on this matter. (Refer Attachment 5)

    I will post the judgments so you readers that are interested can decide for yourself.

    You will also note on the SAMs website, there is a bundle of newsletters missing after June of 2003 when all of these problems were occurring. There was never any mention of the board’s intentions of terminating John in any newsletter. The termination letter John received was never posted in the newsletter. All the judgments were never posted in the newsletter. The private investigators report regarding frequency jamming of opposing member’s aircraft was never posted in the newsletter.

    Now for the other issue:

    I'm sorry to hear that Tony Pacini and his group no longer attend the SAM races, but I don't blame them for their opinion. The last race I attended was when SAM had instituted the minimum idle speed rule years ago. I know my first thought was that it was a sneaky way to kill off those competitors that had the really hot setup. You have to understand that even though it may be a "safety issue" to keep the unskilled pilot from potentially torquing their plane on take off at full speed, Tony and his group will always targeted because they are way ahead of the curve on this sport. Yes they probably could spend more money and produce an engine that would comply with the minimum idle rule, but then there'd be another rule change later. This has gone on for quite some time to people like Tony, Joe and Bill - and it's not just SAMs that has done this to them. Even the breakout times have changed throughout the years to slow the aircraft down a bit for “safety reasons.” In the Bronze class where John Casey was dominating, the SAM’s racing breakout time was actually lowered by 10 seconds. Couldn’t be for safety reasons that time.

    As far as the indemnity insurance for the SAM board, yes this should have been voted on by the membership. The newsletter had actually covered this in the months prior, inviting the membership to “come and have your voice heard” up until December of 2003. I attended the meeting when this was to occur. However, the treasurer’s report noted a $1300.00 expenditure during the previous month. When asked what this expenditure was for, it was learned that the Board went ahead and purchased the insurance without membership approval.

    For the moment, the SAM club remains under the same leadership. The dissenters have either moved on to different clubs, gotten out of the hobby, or have been expelled. Since SAM’s newsletter is not a viable source of information regarding these issues, the rest of the membership doesn’t care or remains unaware; but even if they knew the facts would they do anything about it? I don’t know anymore…

    ~Robert Stanley
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  4. #29

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    RE: Best racers banned in Sacramento

    Sorry but he went to court three times on this and got nothing, I can see how Jimmy thinks he lost three times. The first judge didn't know what he was doing and it doesn't validate everything else that occured because of his questionable ruling.

    As for all this discussion of how the rules were changed to discriminate against certain pilots.....It seems these are fun club races and the rules are trying to keep it that way. The fastest way to kill off a class of racing is to make it expensive and have the racers feel they can't compete without a lot of expensive equipment so why bother.

    Before you point out how participation has dropped off at these races I say that racing in general has lost a lot of participation in the same time. Our local club races used to attract 50+ participants for the T-6 class and now we are lucky to get over ten. Not much has changed over the years except for the increased popularity of other types of modeling.

    It's a really small world we live in and the niche of a local club is very small indeed. Word travels fast, especially if a local store owner is involved and whether or not it was written in the newsletter or brought up at meetings people know what's going on. The mere fact that very few club members have rallied to John's defense tells me he has to except part of the blame for the situation.

    Maybe it's time for a mia culpa on his part because people do tend to get over these things and with time personal differances can be patched up. The only constant in these clubs is that things will change if people stop holding grudges and it will take someone to make the first move.

  5. #30
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    RE: Best racers banned in Sacramento

    Hmmmm, Sorry about what exactly???

    I know this is going to sound like I'm slamming you, but I'm trying to do this as respectfully as I can because the truth still matters to me. You can shred me later if you wish. But this will be the last post on this topic for me.

    I don't know if you realize this, but you're kind of making my point: Jimmy Skids stated John Casey SUED 3 TIMES TO BE REINSTATED and lost all three times. This is simply not true - which is why I posted the actual public records. John initially sought monetary reimbursement. It was the judge who came up with the idea to reinstate him - not John. Evidently, this judge, who by your own description, didn't know what he was doing, was actually trying to bring this to a resolution without costing the club some money. So THERE was the "first move", the golden opportunity for the "mia culpa." But what did SAM's board do, they appealed the decision.

    By the way, you may need to clarify the following point: Since Jimmy and apparently you believe John lost all three times, did the board win the first case from a judge who didn't know what he was doing, or did John lose the first case by a judge who didn't know what he was doing?

    It's also nice to know that in a really small world, gossip is the preferred method for people who want to be in the know these days. I suppose that's how Jimmy got his misinformation about how many times John sued, and what the suit was for.

    I appreciate your candor regarding the warbird racing, the costs involved, and the waning numbers. I know there are many who want to keep it simple and inexpensive and will use the rules of the event to keep it that way. People like Tony realize this thought process exists too, which is why he chooses not to participate in those events. The flip side would be that there are some that think the better the competition the better the sport and those event's rules will reflect that way of thinking. That's where people like Tony will try to compete.

  6. #31
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    RE: Best racers banned in Sacramento

    As a member of an AMA club in the Sacramento Valley Area, I will say that the Warbird Racing

    at the SAM sight is a great deal of fun that is well organized and that the SAM membership does

    a great deal to ensure that the races are entertaining for all involved.

    The rules changes seem to me to be in the interest of trying to keep a similarity to the Reno Unlimited Air Races with regards

    to the "type" of planes allowed and as far as the idle RPM rule goes its plain to me that its in the interest of saftey and

    keeping the races fun.

    I competed in two such races this last year, and all the folks I met at both races were genuinely friendly and helpful.

    I hope that SAM will host many more such races in the future.

    Tom
    It\'\'s called \"Warbird Racing\".
    So ask yourself, is that a warbird?

  7. #32

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    RE: Best racers banned in Sacramento

    Stanley,
    That was not a slam at all and I appreciate someone who can maintain a conversation without resorting to below the belt stuff. You are correct that in the first case the club did not win, nobody did. It seems though that John C. never sued to be reinstated, as you mentioned, it is not in the small claims court's jurisdiction to do so.

    While gossip shouldn't be the mode to spread information to the club my point there was that owning a shop, John probabley has contact with enough members to get his side out yet few came to his support.

    Please feel free to respond as I find it an interesting topic and as long as the discussion is civil there is no reason for all sides to not weigh in. I have no dog in the fight and only am fascinated by club poltics when things go this wrong.

  8. #33

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    RE: Best racers banned in Sacramento

    Just for my edification of infomation, what "shop" does John Casey own?

    thx

    Jim

  9. #34

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    RE: Best racers banned in Sacramento

    heres Some more Background: John Casey does not own a hobby shop, I do, Jeff Weiss.

    I was terminated also only after trying to get some civility into this debacle.

    Mr. Casey tried to exercise his legal rights as a member of the club. He was attcked by the board and the rest you are getting a good feeling for.

    Now for the facts:

    The Board tried to raise dues 3 times in the club.

    (John Casey) Opposed them three times.

    The club members voted down raising fees 3 times.



    The boards cronies wanted to give non modelers voting rights without being AMA members.

    Casey opposed it.

    The membership voted it down.

    The board wanted to get indemity insurance.

    Casey opposed it

    The membership voted agaist the board again.

    The board went and spent the money anyway. As raised initation fess anyway(see the newsletters)

    Casey called for there dismissal for missapropiation of funds.

    Then Casey was terminated.

    Cutting out the voice of opposition has long been a trackpath of dictatorships,communisim, facism.

    The liberal agenda coming from the Board is pretty clear here.

  10. #35

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    RE: Best racers banned in Sacramento

    For all of the wisdom of John Casey, he is down to hiding in the Christmas trees at the SAM site approximately 150 yards away from the runway as he watches in awe as everyone else has a great flying day.

  11. #36

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    RE: Best racers banned in Sacramento

    Dear Mr. Weiss, as a hobby shop owner, maybe you should consider an English or spelling course. Good luck, you need it.

  12. #37

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    RE: Best racers banned in Sacramento

    Thank you Stanley for having the guts to put out the truth about the SAM site. As a founding member of the Sacramento Area Modelers
    I am now in exile, flying at another club in another city. Why, because I cannot tolerate the manner in which the SAM board is ruling the club.

    If you threaten a fellow member at a club meeting, you are still a member in good standing, shout down a recognized speaker at a club meeting and later physically threaten them in the parking lot, you are still a member in good standing. Be accused of shooting down aircraft on several occasions, you are still a member in good standing.

    If you go to a meeting and point out things the board doesn't want the membership to know, you are out of the club. If you receive a threatening phone call at your home regarding your points of view at club meetings and then dare to try to play a recorded message of said threat at a club meeting, you are expelled from the club. If you circulate Emails written from a club member where he writes he saw a fellow club member shooting down airplanes, you are expelled from the club. If you see a fellow member shooting down aircraft and report it to club officials, you are ignored and then when your observations finally become known to club members, you are hounded out the club.

    I want to believe that the majority of the club would not tolerate these actions, but in trying to inform club members of the what I believe is the truth, they either do not want to hear about it or are afraid they will be the next person to be threatened.

    In response to club members questioning the ruling boards actions, instead of being more responsive to the club membership, the board puts forth a new club constitution giving the ruling board more power. This constitution was ratified by a vote of 26 to 1. With a membership of over 160, 27 people show up to vote on changing the rules that restrict the rights of the membership.

    I truly wish the majority of the members of the Sacramento Area Modelers the best of luck. Some day I hope to be able to return to the club I help start and for twenty some years was so proud to be a part of.

  13. #38

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    RE: Best racers banned in Sacramento

    Keep it Civil!!!

    No personal attacks, or I will lock this down.

    I just edited my last post.
    Dave Norman
    29w

  14. #39
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    RE: Best racers banned in Sacramento

    It seems that this clubs' motto should be," ALL MEN ARE CREATED EQUAL, BUT SOME ARE MORE EQUAL THAN OTHERS".
    WHO GUNNA FEED MAW KEEEIDS..???

  15. #40

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    RE: Best racers banned in Sacramento

    I have to say it!!

    Why does it always seem that when the truth is presented, it is followed by a warning!!

    I see nothing that has been posted as of yet that can be interpeted as a "personal attack"

    Each and every point that had been made by Mr. Casey, Mr. ponzogeorge1fjmm, Mr. Stanley or myself, has been fact and has been backed up with documented proof. I think that quailifies these statements as testimony from a particular position.

    But Honestly, not from the trees !!!

  16. #41

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    RE: Best racers banned in Sacramento

    Thats probably because I cleaned up the messages.

    Everything on here now is fine, but I had to edit one post, and remove another one entirely.
    Dave Norman
    29w

  17. #42

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    RE: Best racers banned in Sacramento

    Airnut guy,
    From an outside perspective you guys make a convincing arguement. As always it is hard to get objective proof on these forums but with civil discourse from both sides we can gain some insight to the situation.

    From what has recently been presented it seems that things are not very fair within your club.

    I think the issue of racing rules is completely seperate from that of club politics and while I can understand the boards decisions on the racing rules the other actions seem detrimental to the membership.

  18. #43
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    RE: Best racers banned in Sacramento

    I posted in a generic fashion earlier in the hopes of pointing out that

    in spite of the way things are being presented here, the SAM club seems to be thriving

    and has a very nice flying site to boot.

    All members that I've met and dealt with were complimentary and helpful.

    Even the club President who is being made out in here to seem like a Fidel Castro type has been nothing but friendly.

    Now I dont know Mr.Casey but I do know the Hobby shop owner, And Im using the teachings of Thumpers daddy right now.

    Gawd I hope I dont have to 'splain that.



    It\'\'s called \"Warbird Racing\".
    So ask yourself, is that a warbird?

  19. #44

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    RE: Best racers banned in Sacramento

    Mr. FlinVR,

    All I can say about the President of SAM is to ask him drectly about what Mr. Casey, Mr. Dodge Mr. Weiss. All you have to do is start a dialouge about the issues and he will show his "other" side. My advise is to ask around, ask for detail and proof, not here-say and slander. When all is said and done, come talk to use and we will give you the hard facts and truth.

    Hope this is not to inflamatory, but the truth does tend to shine the light everywhere, even where we may not want to see.[]

  20. #45

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    RE: Best racers banned in Sacramento

    I respectfully request the moderater only curtail the speech rights of those who violate the "personal attack" rules.
    The rest of us would like to try to stick to the issues.

    More to ponder :

    The Sam constitution articule 2 section 3 states

    "Purpose: to ensure the high standards of saftey and sportsmanship,
    according to the practices and recomendations of the AMA are observed by all participants"

    The AMA recommended verbatium ....section's on expulsion and termination,
    they clearly call for a "vote by 2/3 the membership" not the boardmembers.

    The AMA set it up that way.... as it is way to easy for 5 or nine guys to gang up on one person.

    Lets see:

    Was there any vote by the membership taken to expel any of the members???.......No there was not.
    Are any of the terminations really valid.? Not if you follow the AMA recommendations...
    which are supposed to be followed per SAMS own constitution.

    Most clubs have the bylaws and constitution listed on there website for everyone to read
    Why not Sam's? If the current constitution(adopted by only 29 people at a stacked meeting)
    was listed , Stalin would be probably be proud.

    Was the membership notified of the expulsion of John Casey...in any newsletter
    after he was terminated so properly on Feb 24 2004?
    go look at their web site. If not why not?

    Its true that the board can be fired at any time... to bad the members don't know that.
    I knew of a club that fired a board member at every meeting just to show them they could.

    The members were told that the board was going to "appeal the case" in the newsletter,
    but they were never told of the courts first finding in the newsletter which is very specific and shows that they got there
    behinds handed to them.

    Things missing from the website:
    constitution and bylaws
    All judgements
    A private eye report paid for by the members
    Notifications to the membership about voting issues and there outcome.

    Alot is being hidden from the membership. I want it all out there for everyone to see..no secrets.

  21. #46

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    RE: Best racers banned in Sacramento

    Thats all I have done, I just don't want things to get out of hand.

    This is obviously a very emotional topic.
    Dave Norman
    29w

  22. #47

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    RE: Best racers banned in Sacramento

    John:

    Looks to me like you want to get back in that club. It appears to me that you think you've gone too far and that you can't bring yourself to take the first step to get back into SAM. Have you gone too far? Perhaps not? Tell you what: A little humility never hurts.

    Attitudes change; the membership changes; people mellow. You might think about forgiving their mistakes. You might reconsider your mistakes...if you made any.

    While I was a member of SAM--albeit a short time--no one badmouthed you to me. I was on a first name basis with at least three present board members and a recent past president.
    They were about having fun, enjoying their hobby. KF6GUB

  23. #48
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    RE: Best racers banned in Sacramento

    Wow, when I posted my first post I was just trying to put a little perspective on this..... Boy did that blow up! Firstly I would like to apologize in that I was incorrect in the posting stating that John Casey had sued three times. He actually only sued twice, thank you to StanleyR for pointing that out as well. The club has in fact been sued a total of four times in the recent past. All of the suits have cost the club a lot of money of which airnutguy’s suit was the most expensive. The club eventually won all 4 suits (from a legal standpoint that is).

    You would think that the few that didn’t like the club and the way it was run would either put up with it, or go fly somewhere else instead of disrupting meetings, filing law suits, complaining to AMA and contacting the holder of our lease to complain. These men are adults, and I would say that they need to act as such.

    In the past year the club has spent a ton of money (upwards of $30,000) on lawyer fees, and a huge runway repair, yet has not raised dues or assessed the membership. I believe that the dissenting few would like to have seen the money that the club had used for furthering their own personal agenda vs. that of the majority of the club.

    Please realize that we have a county lease and as such there are a lot of hurdles to go thru even to have repairs done at our own dime. As you read all these posts please realize that the people that are in opposition to the board (and a majority of the club) are the same ones that made such a disruption at our meetings that we were asked to leave the meeting site, contacted the AMA to complain about planes being shot down (of which the club hired a private investigator to investigate – conclusion, no proof), and then formed a new club and went to the county stating that they were willing to take over the lease.

    I used to be a board member, and as with the current board members all we get is free dues for the year following the year served. After my two year term serving the club membership I decided that I needed a break as the personal attacks against the board wore on me to the point that this great hobby/sport lost some of it’s attraction to me. I continue to serve the good of the membership by running a monthly P51 race that has brought the club positive PR via local news reports while giving the membership a little taste of racing throughout the year. Year to date we have had 11 races with over 15 pilots on average. Every month we have a great lunch brought by one of the pilots, and four rounds of fun, (and we fly in between sport pilots having a great day as well). The local hobby shop of preference (RC Country) has been a great support of these races by ordering kits even when they were out of production, and providing raffle prizes for our yearly awards dinner. I point this out only to show how a positive business gesture can gain loyal customers.

    I hope that my comments haven’t muddied the waters even more. Either way if anyone reading this is ever in Sacramento, come by and see the SAM site. Hopefully you will find as I have that the remaining members are some of the best guys around.

    Good Flying and Take Care,
    Skids
    TEAM JR
    Spitfire Brotherhood #99
    Outlaw Racing CD 2001 to present

  24. #49

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    RE: Best racers banned in Sacramento

    Thanks Skids, for putting out the "Majority Opinion" for those interested. With all respect, the three individuals expelled from the club didn't spend one dime of the clubs money. All they did was defend themselves after being expelled from the club by a majority vote of the SAM board not the membership. They had no opportunity to defend themselves in front of the membership, either at a club meeting or in the club newsletter. When they asked for a membership list to inform the membership or their side, the SAM board refused.

    Skids, you state the majority backs the SAM board. Why is it then that the membership has voted in opposition to the boards wishes on numerous issues in the last year and half. Why have four board members resigned their position in that same time period. I know from them talking to them personally, that two resigned of because problems with their fellow board members.

    Sir, you state the Private Detective found no proof of a club member shooting down airplanes. Why has this report not been provided to the membership, this report was paid for with club money and the membership deserves to see it. The President stated in a newsletter, that a condensed version would be forthcoming in a newsletter. To this date this has not happened.

    Well Skids, I guess I took your advice and joined another club. The folks in the "Majority" drove me out. I will not be renewing my membership in the SAM club. I will not belong to a club that restricts its members rights to question issues, to put forth ideas for club discussion and most important the rights of people not considered in the majority to have a voice in club business.

    Best Wishes

    Ben Ponzo

  25. #50

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    RE: Best racers banned in Sacramento

    I am going to send this thread to the AMA. (American Medical Association) So they can get a Psychologist on this right away.
    Hollywood is missing the real boat, they need to send the reality tv cameras around to R/C flying sites. It would be far better than Jerry Springer and equally as entertaining.

    Someone please post what REALLY started this.

    John, what was the first thing that got you upset? Don't go into some long drawn out chunk of issues, simply state in one sentence what the problem is. Please don't state that it is too complex to state in one sentence, because it's not. Someone did something, that made you angry. You (as it sounds) along with a few folks disrupted a meeting or two and were asked to leave and it went downhill from there. I bet it really is that simple.

    If the leadership of the club truly didn't honor what the majority of the club wanted, then shame on them. This really is supposed to be fun. I would imagine that everyone involved is two good, calm, discussions away from resolving this.

    Get back to the real business at hand, flying, and having fun.
    One man\'s crash is another man\'s carefully planned landing maneuver.


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