Thursday, June 01, 2006

FBI Investigating Posts on Connecticut Local Politics

The article is here, if you haven't read it.

So we're the news today. Let's talk about it.

Here's what happened. On several occasions in the past, a poster posting under the name "Harry Reid" and another posting as "Barak [sic] Obama" have left weird, pro-Lieberman messages, and have responded to posts questioning their identity. They appeared to be a strange sort of ineffectual satire, and no one appeared to be taking them seriously. I decided to let them be, as they were neither grossly offensive nor slanderous.

But now an investigation has been opened into these comments to see whether or not someone in the Lieberman campaign posted those messages in an attempt to give the senator some kind of boost. If this is the case, they need to find a more productive use for their time.

But that does raise some questions. Who posted the comments? Does it matter, if it wasn't someone in either campaign? Should the FBI be involved? Where does satire stop (if indeed satire it was) and violation of campaign law begin? Am I, as administrator of this site (I don't own it--Blogger does) responsible in any way, if a violation has in fact occurred? Is Blogger? Will this site exist tomorrow?

Not easy questions. I can't even begin to think about the political effects of this. So there you are. I still haven't heard from the FBI (although I probably wouldn't be allowed to tell you if I had). We'll see what happens next.

76 comments:

I'm Not Harry Reid said...

All I can tell you was, it wasn't me!

Genghis Conn said...

It's worth posting this from the Blogger terms of service:


12. MEMBER CONDUCT Member is solely responsible for the contents of his or her transmissions through the Service. Member's use of the Service is subject to all applicable local, state, national and international laws and regulations.

Member agrees: (1) to comply with US law regarding the transmission of technical data exported from the United States through the Service; (2) not to use the Service for illegal purposes; (3) not to interfere or disrupt networks connected to the Service; and (4) to comply with all regulations, policies and procedures of networks connected to the Service.

The Service makes use of the Internet to send and receive certain messages; therefore, Member's conduct is subject to Internet regulations, policies and procedures. Member will not use the Service for chain letters, junk mail, spamming or any use of distribution lists to any person who has not given specific permission to be included in such a process.

Member agrees not to transmit through the Service any unlawful, harassing, libelous, abusive, threatening, or harmful material of any kind or nature. Member further agrees not to transmit any material that encourages conduct that could constitute a criminal offense, give rise to civil liability or otherwise violate any applicable local, state, national or international law or regulation. Attempts to gain unauthorized access to other computer systems are prohibited.

Member shall not interfere with another Member's use and enjoyment of the Service or another entity's use and enjoyment of similar services.

Pyra may, at its sole discretion, immediately terminate Service should Member's conduct fail to conform with these terms and conditions of the BTS.

TrueBlueCT said...

Genghis--
You aren't culpable in the least. Trust me.

But assuming someone else's identity is always wrong. What if I started posting at other blogs using your handle? Or if I sent a letter out and signed it Chris McArdle. Or if I slashed someone's tires and left a note crediting CTKeith? Bad. Bad. Bad.

Right now I'm going back through the "Harry Reid" threads. Right off the get go, I found this exchange:

DeanFan84 said, "I hope you know that what you are doing is wrong. I presume everyone will recognize you as one of Joe's lame-ass staffers, but assuming identities is still taboo."

"Harry" responded, "Dean fan 84, I think you and everyone else knows that I am in fact who I say I am. You can corroborate that by reading the printed letter I sent through the mail to Democratic delegates to your state convention."

Anyway, the more I read through these posts, the more "Harry" sounds like Ken Dagliere, who at the very least is a lurker here.

Can we give Ken the benefit of the doubt by calling tomorrow and see if he will go on the record denying this was him? Ken is a priest, and I doubt he would lie.

BRubenstein said...

The confirmation by " harry reid" to Deanfan removes it from " harmless satire" to a deceitful attempt to confer a benefit to Senator Lieberman...

TrueBlueCT said...

"Harry" posted this, too:

"Dear Mr. CTKeith,

As someone who has been lauded here by you or your allies (I apologize for not having the time to keep up with things here as much as I would like), I must ask you to try to look beyond the difficult truth of our invasion of Iraq, and consider the situation as it stands.

While I wholeheartedly wish we could depart tomorrow, nobody here in Washington believes that we can simply walk away. You are, to paraphrase myself, alone, just really alone out there on this. Even Democrats don't agree with you.

Again, as a Democratic leader, I ask you to focus on what unites us a Party, not what divides us.

Every best wish for a relaxing evening,

U.S. Senator Harry Reid, Democratic Leader"


If anyone else wants to stroll through these threads, the dates are May 7th, 6th, 5th, 4th....

truth squad said...

i thikn that this brings up a very good issue that needs to be addressed on the blogosphere. just what exactly are the rules??? not only is using someone elses identity wrong if doing so in a harmful manner but so is the dissemination of false information about other people who arent considered public officials that could be interpreted with intent to harm or injure ones reputation. those of us who particpate in this medium have a responsibiliyt to ecah other to follow the rules that have been set and i think this action on bruce's part will bring alot more accountability to the blogosphere and the things that are publicaly written on it. for this blog and for the may other that are out there. a liscence to blog does not equal a liscence to represent yourself as someone else or to slander others who are not considered public figures. this should serve as a call and i imagine wont be the last of the court actions if it continues the way it is.

bluecoat said...

Thanks as that is the way I remebered it with the "Senator". I also remember Barbara Boxer making a false statement about where Lieberman was on Iraq and called her on it - it met with no response from Barbara.

TrueBlueCT said...

Then there was this exchange:

I said, --Just so everyone knows, like Lieberman's wife Hadassah, Harry Reid's sons, (and son-in-law), are corporate lobbyists.

Lobbyist wives and family members, from MSN.

"Harry" responded,

Dear Mr. TrueBlueCT,
May I add to your research, citing your own source.

Kevin Leahy Son of Sen. Leahy (D-Vt.)
American Petroleum Institute, VT Petroleum Association, 3M

Loretta Durbin Wife of Sen. Durbin (D-Ill.)
American Lung Association of Illinois, Mazur & Associates, Metropolitan Planning Council

Ruth Harkin Wife of Sen. Harkin (D-Iowa)
United Technologies, Director at ConocoPhillips

Senator Lieberman's wife, for the record, worked for Pfizer prior to her relationship with Senator Lieberman. And their relationship predates Joe's unlikely victory over your Mr. Weicker.

And while my son Key does, according to your source, lobby for some local interests here in Washington, my other three sons do not lobby on Capitol Hill, as your source makes clear.

May I suggest, with the utmost respect, that you grow up.

Warmest regards,

U.S. Senator Harry Reid, Democratic Leader

-----------------------
To my mind that's a pretty good attempt to pass one's self off as Harry Reid in real life.

Genghis Conn said...

I think perhaps a belated policy is in order: no using the names of political figures as your handle.

Of course, what about actual political figures who post here, like Paul Vance?

Can we reliably tell the difference?

cgg said...

I think it may come down to intent. If the troll intended to fool us into thinking they were actually Senators Reid and Obama that's probably illegal or actionable, even if they fooled no one. If the intention was satire, or even just to troll I'm not so sure. But then I'm not a lawyer, even an arm chair lawyer.

Would someone from the Lieberman staff be sp stupid? I doubt it. Perhaps an overzealous volunteer? I'm actually really curious as to who this person is and what their intentions were.

bluecoat said...

Mmmm Jodi Rell is clearly not the governor; it would be a shame to stop satire that is clearly that versus obvious attempts at deception, which need to go -

TrueBlueCT said...

Genghis--
You can easily confirm that someone is really the politician. Just email them!

Is it true that you can't pull up IP addresses? And given that, don't you have access to the email addresses that people register under?

Anyway, can you imagine if I registered as Michael Rell, and then started posting the racist jokes that Young Republicans tell in private? Awful, awful, awful.

There ought to be limits to freedom! -- whoops, who else said that?

bluecoat said...

We don't need any limits on our freedoms - just persons taking personal responsiblity for not abusing them so they can in fact be protected.

Genghis Conn said...

No, I have access to neither the IP addresses of posters nor their email addresses. Blogger has all that information, but I don't.

bluecoat said...

I am no computer geek but there are IP addresses at the site meter.

blueper said...

This is pure idiocy. Anyone who states that they believed the trolls were really the senators in question is a liar or a fool.

Criminalizing bad blogging behavior is not in the interests of anybody who desires an open forum and calling in the FBI to deal with this type of trivia is revolting.

The hosts should be able to ban trolls, if they want. They should definitely ban someone who brings in the feds for some kind of weird vendetta.

bluecoat said...

BR didn't "call in" the FBI but its dinner time.

TrueBlueCT said...

Hey, "Harry" said this:

Mr. Rubenstein,

You have the remarkable distinction of being loathed uniformly within the party.

Your pretensions to power in the Dean campaign echoed your obnoxious behavior at the Democratic National Convention in 2000. It is no wonder that you have been ostracized and ignored by your state's establishment. Even your friends downplay your role there.

In contrast to the disgraceful conduct that your and your former state chairman were infamous for, Senator Lieberman is a good man, and someone who has devoted his life to good, principled government. Very few people I've known in my lifetime are as principled and decent as Joe Lieberman.

Unlike the Republicans, we don't always march in lockstep with each other, because our Party's diversity reflects the diversity of the American people.

As a leading Democrat, I reject your hateful approach to public life, and urge you to reform your ways.

Sincerely,
U.S. Senator Harry Reid

---------------------------
I'm sorry, but that's just wrong. (And sorry Bruce for repeating the slurs.)

To pretend to be the Dem Senate Majority leader, and then attack someone in your own party is exceedingly low.

And if it's someone within the Lieberman campaign, as Bruce believes it is, --that person deserves to lose his or her job.

Dave Mooney said...

GC said...

Of course, what about actual political figures who post here, like Paul Vance? Can we reliably tell the difference?

You can always pick up the phone, call their office and let them know you suspect an impersonation. Since Paul Vance posts regularly, he would probably chime in and let us know that somebody is trying to trick us.

ctblogger said...

You can pull anyone's IP address up at the site meter and it's fairly easy to do.

I'll take you by the hand:

1. Find out when the person posted the comment(s) in question.

2. Go to Site Meter and do a cross check based on the times when the comments were posted. For instance, lets say Harry posted a comment of May 9 at 6pm, May 11 at 7pm and May 12th at 9pm. By looking at Site Meter, you'll probably be able to isolate an IP address around those times (I'd look back about a half an hour as most people don't post a comment as soon as they go to a site).

Also, this is why Haloscan is such an important program to use with your blog. Haloscan gives me the IP address of every person who has posted a comment on my blog which would be very handly in this case.

I'm going to take TrueBlueCT times he said Harry posted a comment and see if I can track Harry's IP down. It shouldn't be hard since I have to do this type of stuff on my blog when I need to ban someone.



3. Eventually, by sniffing through the IP addresses, you'll be able to figure out the IP address of Harry.

ctblogger said...

I forgot, free site meter only gives you the last 100 people (recent visitors). I would find out if you can go through your further back by being a site meter paid subscriber.

In any case, blogger should have the IP information also and I'm sure they will give it to you.

truth squad said...

TBCT, do you also also agree then that falsehoods spread about non public figures on the various CT blogs with intent to harm or injure reputations should also be cracked down on?????

BRubenstein said...

GC..there you have it...you could either get the IP adress yourself or ask Blogger for it.

The question i have is...will you do either?

TrueBlueCT said...

TOO RICH!

Going through the IP addresses, I found.

State of CT
CT Legal Services

and now, get this!
U.S. Senate Sargeant at Arms at Senate.gov

Anyone know how to do a screen shot? the visit time was 5:42pm

TrueBlueCT said...

And the Senate Sargenat at Arms outclicked to the JournalInquirer article!

What are the chances someone made a formal complaint? Was it Harry Reid, Barbara Boxer, or Barack Obama? wOOt!

CTOctaneBlue said...

First off- congrats to GC for making this blog so relevant that a fake posting by "Harry Reid" warrants an FBI investigation.

With that said, I think there may have been a violation of CT Statute Chapter 952 Section 53a-130, Criminal Impersonation: Class B Misdemeanor. Sec. 53a-130. Criminal impersonation: Class B misdemeanor. "A person is guilty of criminal impersonation when he: (1) Impersonates another and does an act in such assumed character with intent to obtain a benefit or to injure or defraud another..." "Statute prohibits impersonating another, not merely giving a false name..." Our "Harry Reid" definitely assumed the character of the Senator. But does posting some comments on this blog really confer a benefit, in this case to Sen. Lieberman? I would be surprised if it did, but then again I have been wrong before!

Personally, I think individuals are entitled to keep their identity relatively anonymous on this blog. However, it is quite another thing to pretend to be an elected official (nevermind anyone else!), in this case to promote Sen. Lieberman's agenda. Remember what you learned in Kindergarten- "assuming someone else's identity is always wrong." (good statement TrueBlue!).

GMR said...

I must say that I am a little stunned by all of this.

First, did anyone seriously believe that two Senators would be spending so much time on a blog about local politics in Connecticut. I mean, really. I realize that many in the blog-world use pseudonyms, and I'm sure that just about everyone else does as well.

Next, suppose it was a staffer of Lieberman. So what? I think the only "problem" with that is if the staffer were accessing this blog from the Senate, as those computers are really supposed to be used for business purposes only.

But I don't think anyone really believed that this was Harry Reid or Joe Lieberman, and I can't believe that 1) people would complain and 2) the FBI would investigate this.

Are campaign staffs not allowed to contribute to blogs without identifying themselves? Has campaign finance reform gone so far that this type of forum is illegal for them to participate in? That seems rather absurd.

TrueBlueCT said...

gmr--
The fact is that real politicians are on blogs more and more. (Ned Lamont live-blogged from DailyKos for example, and John Conyers, Barbara Boxer, Louise Slaughter are frequent contributors.)

So it is not far-fetched that a Harry Reid or Barack Obama might drop in here, and actually post.

To protect them, and there free speech rights, this ought to be investigated fully, as a fair warning to those who might abuse the blogosphere. Particularly since "Harry" slandered Bruce Rubenstein.

How would you feel if I assumed your real identity and started posting with your name?

It's not a huge deal but it warrants looking up the IP addresses and doing a short investigation.

Finally, please think of the hijinks that could result if things like this weren't checked short. I mean someone could post as Joe Lieberman on a "man-loves-boy" website and use it against him. Gross!

Gabe said...

TrueBlueCT -

CNTRL-ALT-PRNT SCRN then go to word and CNTRL-V

Don Pesci said...

Hey Rubenstein, just for the record: I don't hate any lawyers. Most of the one's I know are perfectly capable of making proper distinctions between attempts at satire and mendacious behavior -- because they have senses of humor. Do you really believe that "Harry Reid's" remarks are capable of convincing otherwise intelligent Democrat delegates committed to Lamont that they should switch their vote to Lieberman? How many delegates at the convention told you that they switched their votes because they were fooled by “Harry Reid?” I don’t need their names; a total number will do fine. Apparently in the post you responded to, my writing was not banal enough for you; banality does not cause such explosions.

cgg said...

The question i have is...will you do either?

Isn't this in the hands of the FBI now? If they wanted that information from Genghis I'm sure that they would have contacted him by now. My guess is that this will all go through Blogger.

turfgrrl said...

I am truly enthralled by this brouhaha over this. First, the bar to prove injurious statements on the Internet has been set very high. The comments posted here do not meet obvious slanderous or libelous standards.

Secondly, the only party that can instigate an investigation into the postings by Harry Reid et al, will be Harry Reid et al. They would be the injured party of false postings, not anyone else. For someone to obtain the IP addresses and/or the identity of a poster would likely require a court case. For the FBI to investigate this would require some sort of criminal act to have occurred. Posting as someone else, even a public figure is not a criminal act. The issues are civil, and most of the case law you find relates to civil cases.

ISPs, generally do not respond to requests for IP addresses without a subpoena. There are too many instances of posters to political blogs using the handles of political figures that serve as precedent as to the obvious intent of satire.

For the record, I am not a lawyer, but have followed the legal issues relating to publishing on the Internet for a number of years.

For those that are interested, there is a great organization that defends these types of issues routinely. EFF keeps a great web site concerning the Internet and privacy issues.

Paul Vance said...

I thought this thread was satirical in nature at first glance. Is this how the FBI keeps us safe, by investigating some silly post by someone who was obviously not Senator Harry Reid.

Authentic Connecticut Republican said...

truebluect said: Anyway, can you imagine if I registered as Michael Rell, and then started posting the racist jokes that Young Republicans tell in private? Awful, awful, awful.

Let me let you in on a little secret:

Real Republicans simply don't make racist jokes. PERIOD

The Republican Party is no place a bigot should even feel safe from physical harm. We should all revere the actions of Connecticut native, Abolishionist John Brown.


-ACR

Paul Vance said...

My name and # is in the phone book, if someone is posting something funny or poignant under my name, it is me. If it is obnoxious or rude, it is someone else. :)

TrueBlueCT said...

Turfgirl--
Easy for you to be dismissive when you aren't the person who's identity is being assumed, or the person who was being slandered. (Kind of reminds me of Lieberman's insensitive "take a taxi" comment.)

I strongly believe this kind of abuse should be nipped in the bud. Period. Again what if I went around the blogs, pretending to be Jodi's son Michael, and started telling racist jokes? "Harry"'s slandering of Bruce Rubenstein was just as bad.

Honeslty, where would you draw the line? My line was crossed when I challenged "Harry" and instead of saying just kidding, he then went on to try to convince people he was in fact Harry Reid.

My feeling is that Harry Reid, Barack Obama, and Bruce Rubenstein all have a solid interest in finding out whether "Harry" was, (as we strongly suspect), a Lieberman staffer.

TrueBlueCT said...

ACR--
Man, I feel for you and where you are coming from. It's got to suck being a Republican these days, and how I wish nationally the GOP had the strong character of so many New England Republicans.

TrueBlueCT said...

Hi Dave Mooney--
I'm glad that when I go to your website, I don't see pictures of you standing next to Bush's favorite "Democrat"

Unlike:
William Tong, or even worse,
Derek Donnelly. (Derek's website here.

Do these young Democrats not realize that Lieberman is radioactive?

(To Derek's credit, his site is pretty good, and he does have a blog.)

Authentic Connecticut Republican said...

truebluect said: "how I wish nationally the GOP had the strong character of so many New England Republicans."

Naaah; you just don't know enough Republicans and you may tend to take what you see on TV seriously. (please don't do that; just remember - TV's for entertainment!)

The so called Republicans that embarrass the other 99% of us always get lots of airtime, no question about it.


-ACR

TrueBlueCT said...

ACR--
Outside of New England, it's not 99% of Republicans that are good, tolerant Americans. I don't know what percentage, but well more than 1/100 vote Republican because they don't like minorities.

I grew up in North Carolina, and let me tell you this. By no means is every Republican a racist, but all the racists vote Republican...

Sad but true. The Southern Strategy happened, and I still remember the way they used racist portrayals of Jesse Jackson to herd all the bigoted Democrats over to your side...

The Architect said...

The FBI has nothing better to do other than investigate posts on a blog?

Maura in VA said...

I promise this is not an advertisement, but I have had a lot of success blogging on Typepad rather than Blogger because I was able to track the IP addresses of each individual poster.

What it helped most with was exposing what I call "astroturfing" -- people posting under many different names in favor of one particular candidate (or against one candidate), so it looks like lots of people in the Netroots share the same opinion. But if you look at the IP address, they're all from the exact same location. What has been even more fun was finding out that they're all from, say, the workplace of a prominent campaign donor. Or from a government office. I really couldn't imagine blogging with open comments now without being able to see IP addresses.

It's not always useful, such as with some ISP's that assign a different IP each time someone logs in, but it's extremely useful otherwise.

ctblogger said...

The Architect nailed it.

I mean COME ON! The f-in FBI going after a poster on this blog.

Hey, here's an idea. I hear there's a person who put anthrax in the mail a few years back...can the feds spend their time going after that guy instead of wasting my tax dollars doing silly stuff.

Ugh! Makes me wanna holla like Marivn Gaye.

turfgrrl said...

TrueBlueCT,

Show slander.

TSCowperthwait said...

TrueBlueCT,

I really hope that you did not really intent to state this...

"Anyway, can you imagine if I registered as Michael Rell, and then started posting the racist jokes that Young Republicans tell in private? Awful, awful, awful."

While I am not a "Young Republican", I find your inference extremely offending. Please tell me I am over-reacting...

Chris MC said...

Speaking as someone who probably has been slandered or libeled or whatever on this blog, I have to say this is totally over the top. Plenty of nasty things get said, if GC doesn't think it is fair game, he can delete them, and has on a couple of occasions. Others, including me, have reconsidered things they've said, and removed the offending items or apologized or clarified, etceteras.

And I've seen a lot nastier things said on blogs in the heat of a political contest than anything said here.

It is a BLOG. We get pretty tough with one another sometimes around here. If I don't want to play here, I can just leave.

And if we're going to start prosecuting or suing people for obviously satirical or even mean spirited stuff, maybe it really has "jumped the shark".

Or is this just a fiendishly clever ploy to draw attention to the debate here? Anybody know how the Journal-Inquirer learned about this FBI thing in the first place?

BRubenstein said...

Turfgrrl....trueblue's posting of 6:37 shows "harry" libeling me,not that you know the difference between libel and slander.

you also are wrong as to who can "instigate" a complaint. you said only Hary Reid can...but guess what ..i already instigated a complaint...and guess again..the FBI is investigating it.

And you are wrong yet again when you say there was no criminal wrong-doing here...that's what the FBI will determine...or shall i tell them to talk to you since you have already decided the issue?

And..you are yet wrong again when you said that posting and posing as someone else isnt criminal.It can be when you attempt to convey a benefit upon someone or something. In this case people were urged to vote at the convention and primary for Senator Lieberman....which is a attempt to convey a benefit...furthermore, when asked by deanfan84 if he was indeed Harry Reid, that person said yes...someone interested in satire at that point would have told the truth and confessed...

Finally the person libeled me...which again is actionable.

But what makes me sad is your rather flippant and dissmissive attitude.

When you say you have studied the law on this i suggest you sit in on a law course teaching this because you dont know the law.

Now go play with your hero Newt Gingrich and leave the law to the professionals.

TSCowperthwait said...

I think GC erred in posting this column. It is becoming difficult to determine who is being sarcastic and who is being obnoxious. I suspect it is a little of both.

BRubenstein said...

Don Pesci....congradulations...you have achieved banality!!!!!!!

You and i both know that no one will ever know how many folks were convinced to vote for Senator Lieberman due to the postings.

Fortuneately, no one has to show it for proof of violating the federal statute. And neither will i in a libel suit.

TSCowperthwait said...

brubenstein,

Are you seriously pursuing this claim? I suspect you are based on your written words here today, but please explain to me who was harmed and how. I'm not sure that I've seen all of the posts on this issue...

BRubenstein said...

tsc...the FBI is investigating it...see the prior posts to find out who was harmed besides meyself.

TSCowperthwait said...

brubenstein,

I have read the prior posts and I am still trying to figure out how this has escalated to the level that it supposedly has. Is this what you really want?

Wolcottboy said...

I know that I am not moved by higher leaders telling me how to vote, but certainly some people are. I am however, caught off guard when Bush and Santorum support Sen. Spectre instead of a pro-life candidate primarying him. So if I was voting in that Pennsylvania primary, those endorsements wouldn't affect my vote, yet the endorsements by other politicians I generally respect would carry some shock. Yet, I think we can mainly agree that "Sen. Reid" - due to his quick change from seriously endorsing Lieberman, to outright cutthroating Bruce - was not who he said he was.

Yet, we can't ignore the fact that politicans in the past have done stupid things. Unlikely that Reid and Obama posted? Certainly. But possible.

Even more importantly and what does cause concern to me is the substance of the posts by "Reid". He outright described behavior he didn't approve of by Rubenstein and posted it for all to see in the midst of a Democratic quarel. I didn't know Rubenstein's position before this post, but I totally understand his concern. This person clearly knows Rubenstein, meant to cloud and darken other party member's perceptions and trust of him, and that constitutes libel.
If a no-name person (especially if they were truely identified) posted such remarks, then we'd know it was just one person's opinion and it wouldn't matter. But because they placed themselves in the guise of a leader in the party, that causes great concern.
I believe this investigation is warranted (though I believe it will be short) and most of us would have the same concerns if it occured to us in a similar position. As a citizen, I don't mind my money being used for this to protect someone's reputation.

turfgrrl said...

BRubenstein,

Ha .... I'm not a grievance panel, but I don't believe you. There are plenty of databases available where one can "dig up" the "true" character of an individual. Your true record, and you know what it is really is, is far from what you present on this blog.

Being a lawyer you should know better.

Don Pesci said...

Hey Rubenstein. Just a few questions. Why don't you take a couple of deep breaths and stop behaving like a bully in the schoolyard? Nobody is afraid of your banal suits. Are people on this site supposed to quail and duck under the covers evey time you mention slander? Have you ever heard the expression: If you can't stand the heat, get out of the kitchen? Do you think a blogger who rats out another blogger to the FBI might possibly have a chilling effect on Blogdom USA? Is the Daily Kos feeling the chill?Sheesh!!!

a rose is a rose said...

wow, i thought most of us in connecticut were civilized. i guess i thought wrong.

Don Pesci said...

Hey Rubenstein. You write, "You and i both know that no one will ever know how many folks were convinced to vote for Senator Lieberman due to the postings."

Sure, sure. But YOU know -- I don't -- how many delegates to the Democrat convention told you they were switching their votes from Lamont to Lieberman because they had seen "Harry Reid's" parody on the Connecticut Local Politics site and were fooled into thinking that the fake "Harry Reid" was the real thing. So, why don't you give us a number? Was it one person, more than one? A non-banal answer would be much appeciated.

Aldon Hynes said...

As usual, my thoughts on this are fairly verbous, so instead of cluttering up things here, I've put my thoughts on my own blog.

Like Paul Vance and Dave Mooney, I am posting under my own name and you can call me up and talk about my blog posts.

A Different Anonymous (No! Really!) said...

Worst. FBI investigation. Ever.

truth squad said...

where is eliot ness when you need him? in retrospect this whole thing is kind of silly, however i still by my assessment that a liscence to blog does not give you a liscemce to spread mistruths about people, whether they participate on this blog or not. it would be one thing if these blog comments were contained to those who participated but they arent and any blog comment can be picked up by doing a simple google search and we have a responsibility to be truthful.

BRubenstein said...

turfgrrl...."my true record" about what? Once again you react to postings personally and the insinuation is close to the border...unlike you ive posted my name while you prefer to hide.

From now on keep your cheap and petty personal attacks to yourself and crawl back under the rock where you came from.

A Different Anonymous (No! Really!) said...

Touchiest. Lawyer. Ever.

BRubenstein said...

Aldon...you said that you didnt believe that a reasonable person could believe that is was "harry Reid".

Aldon i disagree with you." Harry Reid" was asked twice by DeanFan84 and i think either trueblu or bluecoat and both times " Harry Reid" said he was the real one. That, gets the posting out of "satire" and into trying to convince folks to vote one way or another.

BRubenstein said...

A Diff ANon...I suppose you wouldn't react if someone gets personal with you.

A non-reaction simply encourages the idiot to keep up with the personal attacks.

Wrath of Conn said...

brubenstein,

There are millions of idiots on the internet prentending they are something they arent and yelling at one another.

You can either take a deep breath, realize most people don't take them seriously, and move on, or you can... well... complain to the friggin' FBI and throw a hissy fit.

You might want to consider not taking any website, let alone a blog full of pseudonyms, so seriously.

In short: Chill out.

The Architect said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
The Architect said...

If anyone should have complained to the FBI, it should have been GC. The funniest part in the article is when GC said he had heard nothing about the investigation. Why don't you take the stick out of your ass, Rubenstein?

ctkeith said...

I thought Republicans were Law and Order people,LOL.

If the FBI finds out this was a Lieberman staffer I'm going to enjoy the 5lb lobster Liebermans money is going to buy at the Party Bruce will throw with the settlement money he gets.

I've got my suspicions who did this.I think it was a regular poster here.

Whomever it was would be smart to admit it,apologize and MoveOn but Cowards never do the right thing.

BRubenstein said...

Dear Architect...Thank you for that personal attack it must have taken you all day to think of it as your IQ is that of a dirty dishrag.

I love you too.

blueper said...

Predictions:

1. No official word from the FBI is ever provided. No denials, no conclusions, no action. Bruce threatens to sue.

2. Someone notes that there is no evidence the FBI is investigating the story. Bruce threatens to sue.

3. Bruce threatens to sue turrgrll (actually, I think he already did). She calls his bluff about his "true record". He threatens to sue again.

4. Bruce demands to see the Architect's license. When he is rebuffed, he files with the State Architecture licensing Board.

5. Don Pesci is in big trouble. That kitchen comment is a threat. How, sir, do you intend to make me "get out of the kitchen"?

6. CTblogger, agrees with the Architect. Do you, sir, have a license to discuss the topic. Doesn't agreeing with him imply you too are an architect?

7. Wrath of Conn: are you now or have you ever been a genetically enhanced survivior of WWIII with a particular hatred for william shatner? Watch out! If the FBI doesn't come after you, the Federation will.

8. Is a "different anonymous..." really? Inquiring bruces want to know.

9. Bruce will absolutely insist on having the final word in this thread.

10. The shark is jumped.


*please note that the name "blueper" is meant to be (slightly) funny and/or satiric, and is not intended to refer to any person living, who previously lived or who may live in the future. Nor does it refer to any fictional person or animal. Nor does the fact that it begins with the letter "b" and has a "u" and an "e" meant to imply that it represents anyone else with those letter.

The Architect said...

Well, at least I can live with the knowledge that you can't phrase your remarks any better Rubenstein.... complaining about me making what you call a "personal attack" by personally attacking me. Laughable.

BRubenstein said...

Blueper..your post was as laughable as the wrong labor info you tried to pass off in a prior posting of yours.

Architect...i responded to you in kind..if you dont want personal attacks on you then dont do them on others'

BLUEPER I ALWAYS LIKE THE LAST WORD

BRubenstein said...

Blueper..your post was as laughable as the wrong labor info you tried to pass off in a prior posting of yours.

Architect...i responded to you in kind..if you dont want personal attacks on you then dont do them on others'

BLUEPER I ALWAYS LIKE THE LAST WORD

Don Pesci said...

Hey Rubenstein. There are no last words. Good show Bluper: You've provided a nearly perfect example of satire. Here's a suggestion: Who needs lawyers to tell us what satire is. Let a satirist come forward, examine all "Harry Reid's" posts and tell us whether it's satire or not. In the meantime, Rubenstein can call off the FBI hounds, and the satirist's judgement will be final. I'll trust a saterist to an FBI agent anyday. Any nominations?

bluecoat said...

BR: glad to see an SDSer working with the FBI after all these years; this is a much better use of the FBI's time than tracking down student protestors or what they were doing out in Michigan -Where's Hoffa? Who Cares?June 2, 2006 Hartford Courant editorial - recently. Good luck!!!
:-))

Brass Anon said...

It seems to me that any comments which otherwise might be deemed to be defamatory, are taken with a grain of salt on this website. The descriptions of individuals, and the statements about them, don't mean much to me. Instead, I define the bloggers who post on this site by the content of their posts, not by what is said about them by others. I don't know Bruce or Turfgirl or Genghis, or most others, but I've managed to form opinions of each of them, just by reading their posts.
When threats of lawsuits are made over fairly inconsequential statements, the chilling effect does great damage to all of us. I think Hairy Reed should apologize if he misled anyone, and he should probably apologize for any untruthful comments he made about individuals in the heat of the moment. A retraction might also fit the bill, from a legal perspective.
And then all of this nonsense should end.
And then, finally, the "thought police" can go back to wherever they came from and let us blog in peace. BTW, my mom did not name me BrassAnon, in case you were wondering.