No Debates, No Forums, and now- no recordings of speeches and putting them on the ‘net.

Screen shot from the Esrati video MuzzledWhat is Jane Mitakides thinking? I got a voice mail yesterday from the Warren County Democratic Party chair- stating that some of his members and Jane were upset that I recorded Jane’s presentation and my speech at the meeting and posted it on my site: Real democracy as practiced in Warren County- compare Mitakides to Esrati podcast

Let’s see: public meeting, public place, public figures talking about qualifications for public office. Hmmmm….. better not let anyone hear it.

I talked to the chair a bit later, he was a bit miffed as well, but thought I should have informed him that I was taping before I did it. I’m not sure that is a credible request in light of the previous paragraph. If this meeting was off the record- why don’t we just stop having elections and just sell the offices to the highest bidder (oops, we may be doing that already).

I responded that there is clearly a comment form at the bottom of my post, and if anyone in the Warren County Democratic Party wants to complain or comment- I provide that opportunity on my site. Try that on any of the other candidates sites. I also said if he wanted to forward me the e-mail Jane Mitakides sent to him about this, I’d be happy to post it as well.

I’ve been wondering how voters are supposed to get information about this campaign- and doing everything I can to help them. In fact, that’s what I thought political parties were supposed to do: hold debates, help candidates define the issues, support democracy and the freedoms our country was founded on.

Apparently something has changed since I read my fathers book: “Dear Son, Do you really want to be an American?” when I was 17 (and again in December of 07) – America is no longer a place where it is free to speak publicly or politically, without prior authorization by a selected few.

I’m sorry. I seem to be acting very un-American. Is it time to arrest me again?

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6 Responses

  1. David Esrati February 24, 2008 / 10:50 am

    It just occurred to me- the Montgomery County Democratic Party only has one podium/lectern- who needs a second if there is never any discussion in public?

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  2. Charles Halton February 24, 2008 / 1:19 pm
    This is amazing. The secrecy has to stop–this is (or is supposed to be!) an open and transparent society. Keep it up David, we need you in this race and in Congress.

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  3. Teri L February 24, 2008 / 4:00 pm
    That fact that you/we are having this discussion is going to benefit everyone in the long run. We hope anyway. Things have to change but only if people call bulls*** when they see it.

    What disturbs me is that someone running for any public office would actively choose NOT to engage with the public. Blogging is such a perfect place to have real, honest, ongoing, important, productive conversations! Why would a candidate or party not welcome the opportunity to fully participate in that? Weird.

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  4. Chad February 24, 2008 / 10:45 pm
    Clearly if no one at the Warren County democratic party knew you were taping the meeting, then you must have been concealing the recorder. It seems a bit cowardly to me that you go around with a tape recorder hidden in your coat, why not just announce your intentions so that everyone is on equal ground? Plus, your podcasts would benefit largely from the improved audio… they would actually be understandable rather than muffled by your coat rustling.

    Dave, these type of ‘snake in the grass’ antics of yours do very little to differentiate you from every other dirty politician.

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  5. David Esrati February 24, 2008 / 11:34 pm

    Chad,
    I wasn’t concealing the recorder. And, even if I was- this is America- land of the First Amendment, free speech and all that.
    Is the problem that I recorded Jane and myself?
    Jane claimed to me that she records everything she says- in fact, that’s where I got the idea to get it.
    Secondly- had it been in my coat pocket- you wouldn’t have heard a thing- except the cloth rubbing against the mic.
    Third-the real problem here is that Jane is embarrassed because she doesn’t say anything substantive. I really can’t help that. If she’d like to debate anytime in the next week- the League of Women Voters would love to coordinate it.
    Fourth- for the record- I was in Special Forces- they call us “Snake eaters”- because we have no problem eating what we catch and kill.
    Fifth- no one has ever questioned my integrity. If you want to do that- sign your full name- otherwise, everyone will just assume that you are Jane’s hired flunky.

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  6. Charles Halton February 25, 2008 / 10:02 am
    Chad, I know David and I know that he is an honest and straightforward guy. If you knew him you would never be questioning his character. My advice to you–don’t gin up accusations against people and situations that you know nothing about and don’t be a coward and hide behind a semi-anonymous post.

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