Sunday, October 13, 2013

"so oily I was thinking his nickname should be Valdez."

Twitter offers me to tidbits I might not otherwise see.  And mostly I wouldn't have missed much.  But every now and then there is something juicy that has an Alaskan angle.    I couldn't pass up this quote from a comment on a Washington Post article about Maryland Attorney General Douglas F. Gansler.  Here's the whole comment:
Well-said. I met him when he was an instructor at my law school, so oily I was thinking his nickname should be Valdez. He is is the liberal version of Rubio, another sociopath I have had the misfortune of meeting. Both are solely about themselves. Stay far away from both.
This is from a Washington Post article - Maryland Politics section - based on memos the State Police had about Gansler.  Here's the beginning of the article:
Maryland Attorney General Douglas F. Gansler regularly ordered state troopers assigned to drive him to turn on the lights and sirens on the way to routine appointments, directing them to speed, run red lights and bypass traffic jams by using the shoulder, according to written accounts by the Maryland State Police.
When troopers refused to activate the emergency equipment, Gansler, now a Democratic candidate for governor, often flipped the switches himself, according to the police accounts. And on occasion, he became so impatient that he insisted on driving, directing the trooper to the passenger’s seat. Gansler once ran four red lights with sirens blaring, a trooper wrote. Another account said he “brags” about driving the vehicle unaccompanied on weekends with the sirens on.

“This extremely irresponsible behavior is non-stop and occurs on a daily basis,” Lt. Charles Ardolini, commander of the state police executive protection section, wrote in a December 2011 memo that said the problem had existed for five years. “Attorney General Gansler has consistently acted in a way that disregards public safety, our Troopers safety and even the law.”
The links in the text go to the memos.

I don't know the internal politics of Maryland.  Gansler is a Democrat.  He sounds like the kind of politician who likes being important and having power that ordinary people don't have.  And abuses it.  We have those here too.   But, as I say, I don't know Lt. Charles Ardolini and his motives.  But from the tone of things, he seems a lot more solid than Gansler. 

Azerbaijan Election Results

And while we're at it, another Washington Post story reported on the elections in Azerbaijan. 
The vote counts – spoiler alert: Aliyev was shown as winning by a landslide – were pushed out on an official smartphone app run by the Central Election Commission. It showed Aliyev as "winning" with 72.76 percent of the vote. That's on track with his official vote counts in previous elections: he won ("won"?) 76.84 percent of the vote in 2003 and 87 percent in 2008.
But the newsworthy part of this report is that these election results were published the day BEFORE the election was held.  And we in the west who pride ourselves on how much more efficient and effective we are than other nations, we can take at least a few hours and sometimes weeks before we know the results.   

OK, this is not the kind of posts I want to be doing.  I put in the first one mainly because it had an Alaskan reference.  But normally I'd want to use stories like this to illustrate a larger point.  For a newspaper that wants to pull in the latest stories, using Twitter feeds can be helpful.  But it isn't real reporting - it's just second hand news.  The recent twitter based post I did was on copyrights, but that was a post with much value added on my part.  That's how I hope to use Twitter in the future.  Not like this post.

I don't plan on making a habit of this.  I don't want my readers to start calling me Valdez.

(Do you think he pronounced it Spanish way "ValDEZ" or the true Alaskan way "ValDEEZ"?)

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