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The Park Revokes Rack n’ Roll’s CUP

By Greg L | 21 November 2007 | Rack & Roll Scandal | 26 Comments

The Manassas Park Governing Board has predictably revoked the Conditional Use Permit of Rack n’ Roll after ignoring extensive evidence of improper behavior by the city.  When city officials are complicit in perjury, fabrication of evidence, harassment and abuse of a local business owner who got in the way of their grand designs, it is little wonder that they’re going to vote to shut down Ruttenberg’s business if given the opportunity to do so.  This will inevitably lead to more litigation, should Ruttenberg still have some resources in order to appeal to the courts for relief.

At the same time the city is leaving Ruttenberg with little choice but to sell his business and leave, the city has been doing everything possible to block the sale of the business and force Ruttenberg towards personal bankruptcy instead.  This doesn’t have anything to do with the rule of law, it is nothing but exacting personal vengeance using the power of government as a convenient weapon.  The city has engaged in the production of child pornography in order to smear Ruttenberg.  It has shipped drug dealers into the business in order to conduct a raid that would then be used to tarnish Ruttenberg’s reputation.  They co-opted Ruttenberg’s employees to have them defy the instructions given to them by their employer in order to facilitate unlawful activity.  They threaten Ruttenberg as if the city was a mafia operation.  And they run informants into the business on a regular basis to engage in unlawful behavior.  The list here is extensive, and thoroughly damning.

Notorious establishments such as the Golden Phoenix were given very different treatment.  Don’t remember that place?  It was a local hangout for biker gangs, located in the same strip mall as Rack n’ Roll, where the bartender was arrested and convicted for dealing cocaine over the bar, employees would perform homosexual acts on customers in the public areas of the bar, and bikers would do “donuts” with their motorcycles in the bar.  Their license, which included hard liquor, was never revoked.  Since the place shut down, Manassas Park seems to have been busy destroying all records of the regular police activity at that establishment.  I guess even they can be embarrassed.

At some point this is all going to catch up with those responsible for criminal malfeasance, but probably not before Ruttenberg gets to suffer some more.  It feels terribly wrong that a decent businessman can be abused so badly by his elected officials, and then has such a hard time getting justice.

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  1. Anonymous said on 21 Nov 2007 at 9:28 am:
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    This may be a little early for planning purposes, but has anyone got other suggestions for Mardi Gras?

  2. Rob Smalls - Patriot Temp said on 21 Nov 2007 at 9:36 am:
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    Dave - Best of luck with your BZA appeal, and with your civil suit against the city.

  3. Batson D. Belfrey said on 21 Nov 2007 at 10:20 am:
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    This cannot stand. The MP Government has demonstrated that they are corrupt, and needs to be replaced. The problem is, the general populace shows such apathy (as demonstrated by the abysmally low voter turn-out during the past ten years), and their political committees are made up of the same oligarchs who control the government now. Even the independents who were most recently elected have shown that they are part of the very same ilk as those they replaced. So, what to do?

    Dave should run for office on a platform of cleaning up the MP government, fighting illegal immigration, and improving the condition of that little city. He’s got a good story to tell. I am sure that he would find plenty of supprt from HSM and other citizens who are mad as hell, and not going to take it anymore. MP’s local elections are in November. Time for a change.

  4. park'd said on 21 Nov 2007 at 10:43 am:
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    Batson: A couple of issues as I have said before:

    1. Obviously the Feds and State Police don’t think that MP is doing anything wrong or else something would have been done. It may be a case of the good ole boy network or you scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours, but I don’t see them here leading these guys away in cuffs and that’s all that matters.

    2. The town is already 80% Hispanic with most of those illegal no doubt. Many are also motor voters I am sure and they like things just the way they are. Without some kind of mass grass roots effort over a period of a month or more with signs and membership drives set up in key areas in the park I don’t see what’s left of this town getting off its rear end. MP has always been known for being a bit low on the class structure even before it was invaded, and those types of people tend not to vote. Of course not all people that live here are like that but as the statistics have shown, the majority are. 80% are interested in their TV and Corona when they get home, 15% are interested in their TV and Budweiser when they get home, and the other 5% of us which hang out on this blog are throwing our arms up in the air at the other 15% who don’t seem to give a damn. If we could find a way to motivate those 15% then we could send Jones and his cronies packing at the very least, and to an indictment hearing with any luck.

  5. Batson D. Belfrey said on 21 Nov 2007 at 11:28 am:
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    Why don’t you run for office? Or, at the very least, get the ball rolling. If you don’t know where to start, contact Greg, who I am sure can put you in touch with some folks who know how to do this sort-of-thing.

  6. Rob Smalls - Patriot Temp said on 21 Nov 2007 at 12:03 pm:
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    Batson, Park’d - I’ve been looking into this a little, and right now I’m waiting the VA SBE to issue the “November 2008 Elections Candidacy Requirements For Local Offices”. If history is a good barometer, the SBE should be issuing it in the next few weeks.

    Although, any guidance from a pro would be welcome, too… (-:

  7. Rob Smalls - Patriot Temp said on 21 Nov 2007 at 12:04 pm:
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    I bet if Dave runs for MP mayor, this Rack N’Roll affair gets a lot more sunlight than the city would like…

  8. park'd said on 21 Nov 2007 at 12:47 pm:
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    You know I have seriously thought about at least running for council, but I don’t have the proper qualifications and wouldn’t be of service to my constituents since I know very little about managing or running government, making sane business decisions, etc. I am an IT engineer and have nothing more to offer than the existing clowns do and that is not what we need right now in this town. I do however offer an unflappable sense of right and wrong and a strong sense of honor which is a damn sight better than what we have now….

    Dave and Rob on the city council might shake this town up some.

  9. park'd said on 21 Nov 2007 at 12:49 pm:
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    I meant me and Rob on the council since I am also Dave, and Dave Ruttenberg as mayor. Imagine what we could get done with 3 moral guys like ourselves? The days of shady deals and turning the other cheek would be gone. This is assuming of course that this town doesn’t go bankrupt when the subprime foreclosure mess inevitably grips this town.

  10. Rob Smalls - Patriot Temp said on 21 Nov 2007 at 12:56 pm:
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    park’d - It sounds like your all out of excuses not to run. Does the current governing council know much about managing or running government? At least we’d have a little representation, even if righting the ship seems a little quixotic at the moment.

    And Dave R. as mayor, well, that would probably be about the most justice MP has seen in a while.

  11. Loudoun Insider said on 21 Nov 2007 at 12:56 pm:
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    park’d it doesn’t matter if you know anything about municipal government, those currently in charge apparently don’t know much about that either. If you’re an honest and ethical person you will most definitely be a huge improvement. The bureaucrats really run the government after all, the policy/law makers provide the direction and moral compass.

    Once again I ask, where in the world is the State Police and FBI??? This really really stinks.

  12. park'd said on 21 Nov 2007 at 1:25 pm:
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    I agree, where are they??

  13. Anonymous said on 21 Nov 2007 at 4:17 pm:
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    “80% are interested in their TV and Corona when they get home, 15% are interested in their TV and Budweiser when they get home, and the other 5% of us which hang out on this blog are throwing our arms up in the air at the other 15% who don’t seem to give a damn.”

    Since I don’t really fit in to any of those three categories, I don’t know how you would account for me. Perhaps you meant it in jest, but you won’t have the luxury of insulting hardworking families, who hold down jobs, endure commutes, raise kids, vote in every election, and volunteer in the schools and larger communities. You know, those of us who don’t have time or inclination to watch TV and drink beer.

    While the thought of Rob running for office is interesting and even exciting, I am not sure how I feel about you Park’d. For months, you have talked about nothing else then leaving. Now you think about running for office. It’s Adam Larson, the sequel. He was there for, what, a month before resigning to move to the county.

    You are clearly a bright guy, Dave, but your negativity towards this community for the past several months on this blog can hardly be ignored. Rob has always conducted himself in a manner that indicates he thinks this town is worth saving, for a lack of a better description. When the market rebounds, are you going to commit to staying and serving if elected? Can you say this town is worth saving?

  14. park'd said on 21 Nov 2007 at 6:58 pm:
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    As I said before, I am not sure I am much better than the current crop of people running the town except for the fact that I know right from wrong and have honor, unlike them apparently. I am the first to admit that. I honestly have no idea who Adam Larson is so comparing me to him is moot. I also ‘thought’ of running for council because I know that I am beyond corruption due to the way I was raised by a military father who instilled those values into me and put a boot in my a$$ any time I strayed from them, but I honestly have no other qualifications for the job other than that. I did not say that I ‘was’ going to run for council and most likely will not. I know that I would work for the people if I ‘ever’ did which is not what we have now. The way I look at it, the town would be much better off with anyone else on the council, even with a smart a$$, wise-cracking, know-it-all clown like me on it! At least I wouldn’t shrug off your concerns and call you a racist if you brought a concern to me which is what you will get now if you bring up the topic of illegal immigration at a council meeting.

    Whether the town is worth saving is unfortunately not up to me. That is something that we must all as a collective decide at the next local election. My negativity is also not directed towards the community as much as it is towards the illegal alien invasion and the lack of political leadership with regard to the subject. When you see your community trashed, your house value plummet, your commute increased and your local leaders call you racist when you ask them what they are doing about it then your first instinct is to flee. When you realize that it is too late to flee then you fight. I know that all of the LEGAL citizenry (what’s left of us) feels the same way. Some just vent over a beer about it and some vent on a political blog. I think it would take the work of at least 3 dedicated and intelligent individuals in this town who may even be members of this blog to remove the stranglehold that the current leadership has on this town. I think with the intelligence that I have seen on this blog alone that there may well be enough people here finally motivated enough to make it happen in the park.

    If I decide not to run then it will be because I don’t think that I could offer anything more to the city than what they currently have from an experience standpoint, not because I am high-tailing it out of town though. That I can promise you. This town needs leaders that have experience in managing people; people that can make smart business decisions not based on what it can do for them, but for what it can do for the city. $35M elementary schools, 6500 new condo units, a casino and a brand new town hall and police station in the middle of a real estate implosion is not what I would call sound economic policy. How could a vote for anyone else be worse?

  15. Rob Smalls - Patriot Temp said on 21 Nov 2007 at 8:02 pm:
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    Anonymous @ 4:17 pm: Thanks for the vote of confidence. I too was a little fuzzy on your reference to Adam Larson, because I am a local politics neophyte, but I looked it up in some old blog entries and a PotNews article.

    park’d: I think your concerns about the way the Park is governed are valid, and I share many of them. But it would be hard to reconcile your rhetoric here with a campaign that would be anything but negative. People want solutions to their problem, but they are naturally turned off by someone who harps on every negative aspect of the obstacles their town faces, regardless of who put them in the situation. Selling yourself as “the vote for anyone else” doesn’t help your cause either.

    I hope you’ll consider running, because I think your intentions would be good for the future of the town, even if they’re not exactly telegraphed in the language of wine and roses. But moreover, I hope you run in a way that doesn’t demean the city itself, instead focusing your ire on the individuals who guided it to its current state and how to remedy their policies. Whether the town is worth saving is certainly up to you, because if you decide to run you will have an equal part in the debate to follow. And you will have to convince voters that it is indeed worth saving by unseating the incumbent council.

  16. redawn said on 21 Nov 2007 at 8:11 pm:
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    Go ahead and run if you are seriously considering it. I like the fact that you throw that PC BS out the window. Someone needs to stand up and speak the truth :)

  17. Anonymous said on 21 Nov 2007 at 8:55 pm:
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    Thanks for taking the time for posting a thoughtful response, Park’d. Like I said, I have always thought you were a bright guy, even if I find you a bit negative at times. I do think that having you and Rob run would give voice to concerns reflected in this blog. I am more moderate but I think many of these concerns, particularly as they pertain to quality of life issues such as residential overcrowding, have to be addressed. Candidate forums and campaigning would give you both an opportunity to discuss the issues you feel passionately and shed this image of racism that seems to be attached. If you look around, plenty of people live 10 in a town home and they aren’t all Latino.

    As far as qualifications, caring about the community and the ability to think analytically should be the only ones that matter. They aren’t things you would put on the resume. Only you know whether you have them or not. I wish you luck making the decision. If you do run, trust me, you will see me around and I will introduce myself.

  18. Nice Try said on 21 Nov 2007 at 9:14 pm:
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    Adam Larson was the guy who plastered the city with signs about property taxes bring too high and got elected presumably based on his constant “promises” to lower taxes. Upon getting elected, he promptly felt the need to purchase a $750k home in PWC and move. It wasn’t a total loss really as he couldn’t articulate an opinion on many issues beyond how he was going to fix our high tax rate, which had more holes than a wheel of swiss cheese. Bottom line, it would be nice to have a committment from a candidate of longer than a month or two next election cycle. Shouldn’t actually be much of a problem really as homes aren’t exactly easy to sell right now.

  19. redawn said on 21 Nov 2007 at 9:51 pm:
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    Your theme song should be “Our Park’s in Jepoardy Baby”
    Also, go ahead and support cthe casino, so I can save money and not have to drive to drop some change…LOL….ok, just kidding about that part :)

  20. park'd said on 21 Nov 2007 at 9:54 pm:
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    Well if any of you guys are looking for PC from me then you are barking up the wrong tree. We can get that from Jones and his crew and we can see where that’s gotten us. This whole conversation is all very hypothetical anyway.

    Rob, I would like to see you run because you are obviously more experienced and tempered than I am. If you decide to run for mayor then you would have my vote and my help. I admit that I have a bit more growing up to do before I would be ready for the big job. City Council….perhaps. Mayor, not yet ;) Heck, I just found my first gray hair last week - sort of a depressing dose of reality.

  21. Rob Smalls - Patriot Temp said on 21 Nov 2007 at 10:04 pm:
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    Park’d - Tempered? Maybe. Experienced? Not really. I have military experience as a leader - sort of - but no political or higher management experience to speak of. I don’t know if my maiden run should aim as high as mayor, but Councilman seems pretty attainable.

    I’d go for Dave Ruttenberg for mayor, myself. But I appreciate your sentiment all the same. You’re absolutely right that all this is hypothetical, but I think time might just bring more folks to the fore. I look forward to meeting them if I’m right.

    Sorry to hear about your gray hair. I know exactly how you feel. I just turned thirty about 3 months ago. Brutal!

    Just kidding.

  22. redawn said on 21 Nov 2007 at 10:07 pm:
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    Take another look at what I said earlier :

    “I like the fact that you throw that PC BS out the window. Someone needs to stand up and speak the truth :)”

    Turn it up…LOL…Happy Thanksgiving:)

    “Heck, I just found my first gray hair last week”

    Can I recommend ‘ Just for Men”…hah, hah…this is coming from a ex hairdresser…get over it…comes from wisdom and of course stress…

  23. anonymous said on 21 Nov 2007 at 11:56 pm:
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    Looks like only 4 council members were present for this vote. Gardner, Kassinger, and Bunner were MIA.

  24. Anonymous said on 23 Nov 2007 at 4:13 am:
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    Is there a legal fund for Rack N Roll?

  25. Anonymous said on 29 Nov 2007 at 3:48 pm:
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    O.k. well I also do not know the qualifications for city councel; but there are several that have no opinion of their own on councel now. cindy gardner has not put anything into it since she was elected. she just seems to agree with vonnie privett or whomever is speaking at the time. I have lived here for 15 years and love this town, have put my children now grown but one through school here, and was active in the schools the majority of time. what i have come up with is there needs to be drastic change here. and the government as a whole should be replaced. good luck to us all. and god bless

  26. Anonymous said on 4 Dec 2007 at 8:14 pm:
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    Are there no good representatives for the citizens on Manassas Park City Council? Everything seems so negative. Who are worhty of re-election?

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