And it's bad news for the burg of Martinsville, an "economically strapped city" which, by the terms of the deal brokered by Goode, will have to repay as much as $500,000 now due to state business development offices because MZM/Athena has broken its promise to hire 150 employees at the FSAC.
As a sad postscript to all this, the Waldo Jacquith blog turned up a video of the FSAC groundbreaking in 2003. The event featured all the clipart-style trappings of red-state patriotism: exhortations to God and country, a local high school Junior ROTC color guard, a Baptist minister -- even an American flag which had flown over the U.S. Capitol and the U.S. Military HQ in Iraq.
The recording features one touch of unintentional dark humor: "[Mitchell Wade] is a very influential person who definitely has an impact on my future," it shows MZM exec Richard Berglund saying. Berglund recently pleaded guilty to helping Wade commit fraud, and is now cooperating with the same investigators as Wade.
Aside from that, it's just a sorry demonstration of how grateful a local community can be made to feel even as they're being used as part of a larger scam -- one that will eventually take them along with the other marks. Kind of like "The Music Man," without the happy ending.