From: Annmarie Timmins [firstname.lastname@example.org]
To: Vaillancourt, Steve
Subject: email policy for lawmakers
Hi Rep. Vaillancourt,
I'm doing a story about Spk. O'Brien's decision to circulate the state email policy to House members yesterday. Although it's a policy written for state employees or people who use state computers, he says it applies to elected officials too.
Any thoughts on that you'd be willing to share?
Shannon Bettencourt, who answered my questions to Greg Moore on this, said all representatives were told about this policy during their orientation. Do you recall hearing about it then?
Orientation applies only to freshmen reps. I don't believe we had computers back when I was a freshman rep! Well, we had them but I don't think many people used them here in 1996.
I suspect you are partially responsible for this policy, thanks to your recent reporting...especially when you conflated the f word into a personal communication I had with Rep Commerford. It was not an email to all--I send my blogs to all, but that email was a personal response to him when he said something rather loathsome to me...something like I have no life. The type of response I once made to the vile Joe Levasseur when he said he hoped I went to Montreal and dropped dead friendless. That's the type of remark that Commerford made and deserves a Fuck you. It was Commerford who sent that to all, or His Vileness, I never did it. Thus I was surprised when I saw it in your column, but I never pointed in out to you. I suspect O'Brien was not happy with Jon (not John) Richardson's email either, but can anyone doubt that this policy is aimed squarely at me? Or am I paranoid?
I really don't understand it because don't most reps have their own non-legislative accounts? I have one (which I haven't used for years) but could easily go back to it or open up a new one.
If you really want a quote though, allow me to take us back to Germany. Sieg Heil! Erich Honnecher, who was responsible for building the Wall in 1961 although he became dictator on his own later in the decade, was also minister of East German youth. He was responsible for sending kids out to pull TV antennas off houses of East German citizens trying to get news of the world. When I lived in Berlin in 1992 (even three years after the wall came down), there were virtually no phones in East Berlin. In fact, Easterners still had chalkboards outside their apartment doors so people, unable to call them, could leave them messages. The moral of our fable, dear children, is that totalitarian governments fear a free exchange of ideas, always have, always will (note Egypt last year). This is yet further proof that Bill O'Brien aspires to be an absolute dictator, totalitarian, or fascist, you choose the description. I am beyond being shocked at anything he does, but this is clearly another step down the road to fascism. Dare I repeat, Sieg Heil?
Once again, I share everything I write (except personal responses like the one to Timmy C—I note that you failed to mention him and his slur to me) with all and will continue to do so, whether it means doing it from my own account rather than a legislative account. While I remain somewhat of a Luddite, I believe I know enough people with the technical savvy to circumvent this bit of fascism.
Long Live Lady Liberty.
Death To O'Brien's Tyranny
Dare I post this? Need you ask?
By the way, I'm hoping to do a Media Watch of CACR 12 coverage (dig that crazy Telegraph headline!). You mention in your reporting “two” pro CACR Democrats. All I can find is Ramsey. Do you mean Lynch (with not vote on this) as the second?