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Executive misbehaviour (1): San Diego: Just a little local difficulty


A Filner headache

IT IS not easy to find fans of Bob Filner in San Diego. Asked for his opinion, Vince Ramirez, a pedicab driver waiting for fares along the waterfront, leaps on his vehicle, spreads his arms and declares to a stream of bemused tourists: “The mayor is a pervert!” Other locals express similar views, if a little less demonstratively.Mr Filner, a 70-year-old Democratic bruiser with a Cheshire-cat grin, has delivered San Diego, America’s eighth-largest city, its worst scandal since financial improprieties earned it the nickname “Enron-by-the-sea” in 2004. The story began on July 10th, when three former allies of the mayor called on him to resign, saying several women had approached them describing instances of sexual harassment.A steady drip of similar allegations has followed. Many suggest a modus operandi: Mr Filner would, several women said, separate them from a group, sometimes using a manoeuvre known as “the Filner headlock”. Sexually suggestive comments followed, perhaps accompanied by pats on the bottom or licks on the cheek. Thirteen women, including a university dean and a retired rear-…

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