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October 21st, 2009 WW Editorial Staff | Rogue of the Week
 

Michael Ruppert

Peak trouble for an Oregon author.

     
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Author Michael Ruppert used the skills he learned as an LAPD cop 30 years ago to flesh out peak oil and investigate the “truth” behind Sept. 11, 2001 (the CIA did it).

Until recently, Ruppert was merely a conspiracy theorist from Ashland best known for his 2004 book Crossing the Rubicon: The Decline of the American Empire at the End of the Age of Oil. He spun his complicated tales in lectures around Oregon and on KBOO-FM, but his management style suffers from much simpler flaws that earn him Rogue of the Week honors.

The final order issued late last month by Commissioner Brad Avakian of the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries after three years of twists and turns reads like one of Ruppert’s investigations—except Ruppert’s the perp.

The lowlight from the BOLI report: a description of how Ruppert interacted with 25-year-old female subordinate Lindsay Gerken.

“One evening in mid-May [2006] when [Gerken] and Ruppert were alone in the office, Ruppert began complaining that he had a story he needed to get out, that he needed to free himself, and that it would be great if he could just run around the office naked for a minute to get out his ‘writer’s block,’” the report says. “Shortly afterward, [Gerken] was typing at her desk and Ruppert came to her open door, standing in his underwear in a ‘wide-legged stance’ with a ‘big smile.’”

Ruppert, who was in his mid-50s at the time, also put a CD containing selected pornography in Gerken’s desk, according to BOLI, “and told her he was willing to have a ‘sexual relationship’ with [Gerken] ‘if that’s what she wanted.’”

That’s not what she wanted. BOLI awarded Gerken $2,713.42 in back wages and the largest damages claim in BOLI’s history: $125,000 for Ruppert’s sexual harassment.

Last week, Ruppert’s attorney, Wesley T. Miller, posted a lengthy rebuttal on Ruppert’s website (fromthewilderness.com), saying the BOLI ruling “patently violates all notions of fair play and equal justice.” He promises an appeal.

 
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