Tom Gaumer
Re: Success and failure
Wed Aug 14, 2019 13:02

Howdy Ben

"Virgil asked Behan to go with him to disarm the cowboys."
- This scenario of them going together never transpired so it bears no weight on what actually did happen.
IT ESTablished a kind of partnership to accomplish a mutual goal. Virgil had an obligation to respect the goal and his unofficial partner

"Behan said the cowboys would not give up their arms to Virgil."
- Probably not their best decision; bet they wish they had that one back
YEP BUT remember witnesses and Judge Spicer agreed the Earp's fired first. The cowboys might not have had much say in it.

"Behan said he would try to disarm them by himself."
- Supports my secondary premise that the onus was on Behan to get clarity on what was expected.
AND VIRgil might have had a responsibility to let Behan know he was in a hurry and might mess up Behan's efforts as time was more critical than a fight in the street to Virgil?

"Virgil said disarming while in town was all he wanted."
- Agreed. Peace is what was desired.
DO WE agree Virgil fell somewhat short of that desire while Behan was pursuing it when Virgil interfered?

"Neither Behan or Virgil said anything about how fast that needed to be accomplished. So, the speed, within reason, did not matter."
- It certainly did matter, as Virgil illustrated when Behan didn't act fast enough. This was Virgil's prerogative, which he exercised. In short, if Behan is allowed an indefinite amount of time to operate until HE (behan) decides he's done, then that logically means that Virgil would then be obligated to wait at Haffords until he gets an ok from Behan. This also means, then, that he is now in a reduced role under Behan as he waits for him to make his call. This would be ridiculous, and something I'm sure Virgil was not willing to do.
VIRGIL should have respected the joint effort Behan and him were pursuing. He didn't need to wait indefinitely, just long enough for Behan to fail or succeed-a few more minutes might have done it. Were Virgil a wise man he could have sent an observer or emissary over there to see what was going on before interfering but...

"It seems to me they have a baseline standard and a defined parameter agreed to by Behan and Virgil--disarm the cowboys."
- This goes back to what I said about it not actually being the determining factor of success or failure. It just seems like it is on the surface. To expound a bit on it and put it in very basic terms, Virgil could be judged a success or failure based on his ability to do his job. Behan could be deemed a success or failure by his ability to help Virgil do his job. And it still all comes down to Virgil's satisfaction with Behan's performance.
VIRGIL failed completely to do his job and lost it as a consequence. Behan did not fail to do his job as Virgil interrupted his effort, assuming full responsibility for the results

"Behan cannot have failed or succeeded because Virgil did not allow him to finish, one way of the other."
- He failed because Virgil gave him an opportunity, whether reasonable or not, and he didn't get it done. In order for this to not be true then there would need to be some sort of addendum on the city charter that says when volunteers assist the marshal, they shall be allowed "X" amount of time to complete their task. Short of this being written in, it falls on Virgil to decide what's right. Until someone can find this sort of thing outlined in the city's lawbooks, Virgil's judgement rules the day, as he was empowered to make these kind of calls.
If Virgil's opportunity for Behan was unreasonable as you suggest as an option and I think is true,, then the failure again rests solely on Virgil for the results.

"Virgil decided all by himself that pushing past Behan and cutting off Behan's time was the way to go."
- As was his prerogative.
Yep. But now aren't you allowing Virgil to dodge responsibility for exercising his prerogative? Don't blame Behan for Virgil's actions. Give Virgil the full responsibility you say he asserted rightfully.

"At that point Behan is out of it and Virgil has assumed full responsibility and gets the blame or credit for the results."
- Yes, a different premise, and a different context for success or failure.
AT WHAT point did the premise of disarming them change. Was it when Virgil insisted on the confrontation clearing the then absent Behan who had pursued the original goal?

Plain and simple, in order for this idea that Behan didn't fail to be valid it would also have to be true that he had equal authority with Virgil in the situation. He can't be a subordinate figure and have equal pull in establishing what the outcome should be or how it should be done. I just don't think there's any way, in a fully cogent argument (based on what we know and assuming it's true) that you can logically absolve Behan of failure on this matter.
I DON'T see how they had to be equal. They were pursuing the jointly agreed on goal of disarming the cowboys. Behan can be a subordinate figure and pursuing the same goal and have his effort undermined by an incompetent senior partner like Virgil. I really can't grasp why you believe Virgil can remove Behan from the effort by overriding him and then Virgil dodges responsibility and tries to blame Behan for the results of Virgils actions??
Keep Laughing

  • Re: Success and failureBen Harleman, Wed Aug 14 06:22
    Hi Tom, "Virgil asked Behan to go with him to disarm the cowboys." - This scenario of them going together never transpired so it bears no weight on what actually did happen. "Behan said the cowboys... more
    • Re: Success and failure — Tom Gaumer, Wed Aug 14 13:02
      • Tom/BehanPat Mulligan, Tue Aug 20 04:51
        I think Behan's failure was judged by the fact that he did not disarm FM but instead allowed him to return to the other's while still armed. This was possibly observed and reported backed to VE. VE... more
        • Howdy Pat At the point Behan said he encountered Frank and said he told him to disarm, Behan had walked from Haffords one block to the corner of Fourth and Fremont. That might take three minutes at... more
          • Re: TomPat Mulligan, Fri Aug 23 06:47
            When a Law Officer tells you to disarm you do immediately. Then you are no longer considered a threat. Behan claimed he asked FM to disarm. Frank "demurred'. It was not legal for FM to do so. Nor... more
            • Pat See Steve Gattos post. Virgil decided what to do based on what a vigilante leader told him according to Virgil's own testimony. It had nothing to do with Behan. Thus Virgil is 100% to blame for... more
              • Re: modern police negotiate regularly to avoid violenceWayne Sanderson, Sat Aug 24 22:40
                Iím afraid you may be mischaracterizing the Tombstone Vigilance Committee by painting them with the same brush as the San Francisco vigilantes of the gold rush period. The Vigilance Committee in... more
                • I do not deride the Tombstone vigilantesTom Gaumer, Thu Aug 29 01:03
                  Wayne I think much of their impact was just the knowledge they existed and were seen occasionally as on October 26, 1881. They filled the street after the shooting to make sure nothing more happened... more
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