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Posts published in “Day: September 26, 2012”

A digital keepup

carlson
NW Reading

When you're talking about digital information, the line between using public resources for official and unofficial purposes can get awfully blurry. A note out today from the Washington Legislative Ethics Board:

If you have a personal smart hone, tablet, iPad or similar device commoni referred to as a PDA, and you use your PDA to connect both to the legislative e-mail system and non-legislative e-mail, please pay attention to this message.

Recently, some legislators have inadvertently sent carnpaign­related or personal messages from their PDA, only to learn later that the message was sent from their “leg.Wa.gov” address. Use of the legislative network to assist a campaign, to support or oppose a ballot measure, or for most non-legislative purposes is a violation ofthe Ethics in Public Service Act. How do you avoid this? in this situation you must pay careful attention to which e-mail address mail is being sent from and you must use a campaign or personal e-mail address for campaign-related business. To be safe, you should probably set the campaign or personal e-mail account, not the legislative account, as the default or account for sending of e-mail. That Will help avoid inadvertent use of the legislative e-mail address and servers'.

The Legislative Service Center (LSC 360.786.7000) will assist legislators with setting up legislative on a PDA and establishing appropriate default settings, but it is each individual’s responsibility to not use legislative facilities for campaign or inappropriate personal purposes.

In addition, if you are using a PDA that was purchased with public resources, it is treated the same as your legislative computer, laptop, phone, etc. - it is a violation ofthe Ethics Act to use any public resource for political campaigns.

The use of the internet as a communications medium can have unintended consequences. Whether through a YouTube video, a tweet on Twitter, or a Facebook posting, such communications can reach audiences While posted and also have a potentially unlimited life. Literally anyone in the World With access to the Internet can access such communications long after the time they were intended to be available.

In a recent case, a legislator asked for his YouTube video to be removed upon learning there Were ethical concerns about his use of public resources in the production of the video. However, materials on the Internet are generally cached and, are diflicult if not impossible to eliminate completely. Although the video in question should never have involved the use ofpublic resources in the Hrst place, its placement on YouTube prolonged the life of the Clear, visual representation ofthe use of public resources for campaign purposes and may, far into the future, reHect upon the ethics of the Legislature as a whole.

Schools: Whom do you trust?

carlson
Chris Carlson
Carlson Chronicles

Forget about reading the pro and con statements in the Voter’s Guide regarding the three referendums on the November ballot to repeal the Otter/Luna Educational Reforms. Ignore the million dollar campaigns both sides will mount with slickly designed emotional appeals that will tug at your heart strings.

Answer one fundamental question: who do you most trust your children and grandchildren’s future to, the teachers who are with them in the classroom 180 days a year, or a governor and a school superintendent hell bent on rationalizing investing less dollars in education and are dictating reforms from the top down?
This really does boil down to "who do you trust?"

What Governor Otter and Superintendent Luna don’t get is that trust is at the heart of the people sanctioning government to provide services and to divine the greatest good for the greatest number.

Trust, like virtue, once lost can never be regained. From the get-go the Governor and the SPI forfeited that trust by the dishonest and deceptive way they went about ramming their idea of reform down the public’s throat.

Rather than put together a committee or a task force that represented all the key stakeholders, they said nary a word while campaigning for re-election in 2010. Eight weeks after the election they sprang their "reforms" on a quiescent Legislature knowing they would go along simply because it initially meant spending less on education than before.

That Otter and Luna now sit back and profess amazement that anyone would dare question their sincerity is disingenuous at best. They violated the public trust by not trusting the public and the impacted interest groups to recognize the need for some reasonable changes and to design consensus based effective reforms.
They engaged in pure top down dictates rather than ground up consensus yet they claim they are Republicans.

When talking about the state government’s primary constitutionally mandated responsibility the process of reform is critical and has to be inclusive.

Butch Otter and Tom Luna just don’t get that.

As Election Day approaches they are now desperately trying to backfill telling people they are restoring funding that was cut and will be giving teachers more base pay as well as the "new" merit pay, but fundamentally they are engaging in a shell game where they keep changing the base from which they make their phony calculations. (more…)