Whenever you wonder if the U-T‘s editorial board can get any weirder, never fear, it can do more!

Today the board came out with an editorial, “Name names,” that takes the SEC to task over a mysterious “consent decree” for the city of San Diego that the agency’s staff has not made public.

You’d think, first of all, that if the U-T had such a report, it would actually, I don’t know, report on what it says. At least they could share with everyone else what it says or acknowledge why they can’t. Instead, the U-T just launched into a lengthy criticism about it.

Fine. Let’s deal with that.

The U-T writes that it’s unacceptable for the SEC to not go after individuals when it finally comes with some enforcement action. The editorial then takes the opportunity to further heap praise on the report from Kroll – who the U-T‘s opinion editors just can’t praise enough.

Either they’re lying or they’ve seen some kind of copy of this mysterious consent decree. If they have seen a consent decree, it probably is a blanket decision about how the SEC’s staff plans to punish the city of San Diego as a whole for allowing all this to happen. And, if so, it probably doesn’t “name names.” See, the SEC has a different process for that.

Most of us have understood, for quite a while now, that the city would be dealt with separate from the actual individuals. I would argue that the U-T has just not seen everything that’s out there and the editorial board’s members are perhaps wrongly interpreting what they did see as all the SEC might have to offer.

You see, this is what the SEC does. In the mid 1990s, it did this with Orange County: It went after the county as a whole and then it went after individuals.

The U-T should either show what it fully knows in order to justify its spasm today or it should calm down and assume it may not know exactly what’s going on.

SCOTT LEWIS

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