Years ago, when Saturday Night Live was funny, John Belushi was in a skit in which he played the part of the last guest at a party. He sat on the sofa with his dead-tired hosts conjuring up all sorts of things for them to do, even though it was 2 a.m.

The title of the skit was, “The Thing That Wouldn’t Leave.”

I thought of that episode of SNL today when I got an update from the court about the case of John Caldecott vs. the N-MUSD. There were more oral arguments today, with Caldecott’s attorney arguing why the district should release documents that Caldecott claims show improprieties, and the district’s attorney arguing why those documents should remain private.

There is no right or wrong here. If a respected, ten-year veteran of the district claims that there is something rotten in Denmark, then the board should – should have – conducted an investigation into the allegations. But they did not. In fact, they didn’t even exit interview Caldecott before they voted unanimously to terminate him last January, a termination recommended by the person he is accusing of hanky-panky.

Instead of doing the right thing, which would have been right economically, too, they opted for their usual stall strategy. It is their hope to use their deep pockets – your money – to wear down Caldecott to the point where he’ll throw in the towel. That strategy has worked before and they’re hoping it will work again. After all, the mounting legal bills aren’t coming out of their personal bank accounts – it’s coming from taxpayers and there is always more where that came from.

This time, however, there is a difference. This time, they are up against The Thing That Wouldn’t Leave.

Steve Smith