Computer underground Digest Fri June 3, 1994 Volume 6 : Issue 48 ISSN 1004-042X Editors: J
Computer underground Digest Fri June 3, 1994 Volume 6 : Issue 48
Editors: Jim Thomas and Gordon Meyer (TK0JUT2@NIU.BITNET)
Archivist: Brendan Kehoe
Retiring Shadow Archivist: Stanton McCandlish
Shadow-Archivists: Dan Carosone / Paul Southworth
Ralph Sims / Jyrki Kuoppala
Copy Dittoer: Etaoian Shrdlu
CONTENTS, #6.48 (June 3, 1994)
File 1--Intro to Jim Warren Special Issue
File 2--GovAccess.037: re #038-#040 and net-based grassrts pol action
File 3--GovAccess.036: Census data; NJ LegInfo; Ca. Secy of St loot lists
File 4--GovAccess.038: ACTION ALERT - Needed action
File 5--GovAccess.039: Online election-night results;--Cal poli-dregs
Cu-Digest is a weekly electronic journal/newsletter. Subscriptions are
available at no cost electronically.
CuD is available as a Usenet newsgroup: comp.society.cu-digest
Or, to subscribe, send a one-line message: SUB CUDIGEST your name
Send it to LISTSERV@UIUCVMD.BITNET or LISTSERV@VMD.CSO.UIUC.EDU
The editors may be contacted by voice (815-753-0303), fax (815-753-6302)
or U.S. mail at: Jim Thomas, Department of Sociology, NIU, DeKalb, IL
Issues of CuD can also be found in the Usenet comp.society.cu-digest
news group; on CompuServe in DL0 and DL4 of the IBMBBS SIG, DL1 of
LAWSIG, and DL1 of TELECOM; on GEnie in the PF*NPC RT
libraries and in the VIRUS/SECURITY library; from America Online in
the PC Telecom forum under "computing newsletters;"
On Delphi in the General Discussion database of the Internet SIG;
on RIPCO BBS (312) 528-5020 (and via Ripco on internet);
and on Rune Stone BBS (IIRGWHQ) (203) 832-8441.
CuD is also available via Fidonet File Request from
1:11/70; unlisted nodes and points welcome.
EUROPE: from the ComNet in LUXEMBOURG BBS (++352) 466893;
In ITALY: Bits against the Empire BBS: +39-461-980493
UNITED STATES: etext.archive.umich.edu (184.108.40.206) in /pub/CuD/
ftp.eff.org (220.127.116.11) in /pub/Publications/CuD
aql.gatech.edu (18.104.22.168) in /pub/eff/cud/
world.std.com in /src/wuarchive/doc/EFF/Publications/CuD/
uceng.uc.edu in /pub/wuarchive/doc/EFF/Publications/CuD/
wuarchive.wustl.edu in /doc/EFF/Publications/CuD/
EUROPE: nic.funet.fi in pub/doc/cud/ (Finland)
ftp.warwick.ac.uk in pub/cud/ (United Kingdom)
JAPAN: ftp.glocom.ac.jp /mirror/ftp.eff.org/
COMPUTER UNDERGROUND DIGEST is an open forum dedicated to sharing
information among computerists and to the presentation and debate of
diverse views. CuD material may be reprinted for non-profit as long
as the source is cited. Authors hold a presumptive copyright, and
they should be contacted for reprint permission. It is assumed that
non-personal mail to the moderators may be reprinted unless otherwise
specified. Readers are encouraged to submit reasoned articles
relating to computer culture and communication. Articles are
preferred to short responses. Please avoid quoting previous posts
unless absolutely necessary.
DISCLAIMER: The views represented herein do not necessarily represent
the views of the moderators. Digest contributors assume all
responsibility for ensuring that articles submitted do not
violate copyright protections.
Date: Fri, 3 Jun 1994 23:18:12 EDT
From: CuD Moderators
Subject: File 1--Intro to Jim Warren Special Issue
Over the past few years, we can think of no other individual who has
been as active and as effective as Jim Warren in pushing for the union
of politics and cyberspace. Jim was almost single-handedly responsible
for the successful initiation of electronic access to legislative
proceedings in California. Since then, he has expended considerable
time and personal resources in an effort to build on the California
In addition to his political work, Jim also compiles periodic
newsletters to keep us abreast of proposed legislation, activities,
and other information relevant to opening up the democratic process to
electronic media. Jim's labors are the low-key type that generally go
unrecognized, because they are not dramatic, and the successes occur
gradually. Nonetheless, it's folks like him who, in a decade or two,
will ultimately be recognized as the true pioneers of cyberspace--no
glitz, no gloss, just hard work that gradually expands the
democratization of the electronic medium.
We've fallen behind on some of Jim's recent postings, so we devote
this issue to his efforts of the past few weeks.
We don't know where Jim Warren gets his energy, idealism, and
perseverance. Maybe one of these days he'll share is secret with us.
Until then, we're certain that others will join us in
acknowledging Jim's work and extending an enthusiastic "THANKS!!"
Date: Mon, 30 May 1994 14:10:51 -0700
From: Jim Warren
Subject: File 2--GovAccess.037: re #038-#040 and net-based grassrts pol action
GovAccess concerns computer-assisted government-access. So do elections.
GovAccess.038 will be relatively-brief personal election-related advocacy.
GovAccess.039 will give details re California's Secretary of State race.
GovAccess.040 will give details re California's gubernatorial race.
Thereafter, I will return to postings not focused on elections.
[If you want to drop off of GovAccess, please phone or fax. I'm still
apallingly backlogged in my email.]
If you can vote in California, these may be of direct interest to you.
EVEN IF YOU CAN'T VOTE IN CALIFORNIA, THEIR RESULTS *WILL* LIKELY IMPACT YOU:
The results of the June 7th primary elections in California will very-probably
effect what happens in *your* state, and in Congress - in various ways, e.g.:
** 1. For better or worse, what happens in Californica [sic] politics - and
what fails to happen - is often picked up by legislators and activists in many
other states, and by Congress.
The prime examples are the tax-revolts of the late '70s (as I said, for
better or worse; opinions vary). California's Proposition 13 sparked those
Also: Last year's California Assembly Bill 1624 that mandated online access
to Calif's legislative information has become a model for at least half-a-
dozen similar (often almost-identical) bills, introduced this year in other
states' legislatures. And they coulda done better than to semi-blindly pick
up the Calif legislation, mo'less verbatim.
(It was very-much less-than-optimal, from having been whip-sawed by powerful
foot-draggers and ego-trippers in the Calif Legislature. Bill-author Debra
Bowen has already managed to repair one of the minor irritations - passing
recent legislation declaring that legislative information specified in
her 1993 AB 1624 was, in fact, *public* information. More fixes are needed.)
The point is: Californication splatters far beyond California's borders.
** 2. *You* can very-probably help guide what happens in California,
even if you've never been near the state - or even the nation. [Details
Big-bucks influence-purchasers have long known the value of buying political
patronage in states other than their own. It's time that us "mere" *citizens*
to urge *our* preferences on those who will likely impact our futures -
even if we can't vote for (or against) 'em.
** 3. To the extent that we - nationwide - show that the *national* (and
global) power of the net has trans-border political impact, politicians
*will* be more and more responsive to our wishes.
And, no, they *won't* try to stop us. Why not?
1. 15- to 25-million of us now have access to the ultimate political power -
timely information and functionally-free *mass* communications (via the nets).
2. It's too late for them to try to squelch it; the net's too damned big.
3. And just incidentally, its a free-speech issue, and U.S. politicians and
courts aren't *about* to risk charges of censoring political speech.
By using *your* net-speech to impact California "local" issues, you can
probably have an impact on *your* state's and nation's future policies.
GO FOR IT!
HOW TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE. EASILY. NOW. FROM "THE PRIVACY OF YOUR OWN HOME"
>> Grassroots WORD-OF-MOUTH ADVOCACY by folks who are not political hacks is
>> THE most-powerful form of political action. Therefore, use our tools:
0. Research the issues; check out the allegations; select the candidates
and ballot measures that you support and oppose; outline your justifications.
1. Look through the list of everyone you know with an online address. If you
have a fax-modem, also see what fax-numbers you have.
2. Email and fax your political positions to *ALL* of your friends and
associates on the net. Include verifiable rationales for your positions.
>> In most cases, YOUR RECOMMENDATIONS TO THOSE WHOM KNOW YOU will carry far
>> more weight than all political advertising (assuming you're not a known
>> political hack for or against an established party or candidate).
3. Encourage your friends and associates to cascade your message to *their*
friends and associates - just a few keystrokes away.
3. Email your comments - positive or negative - to those politicians who are
online and likely to have any interest in the issue(s).
4. Post your advocacy to all relevant news-groups and forums. Your well-
reasoned positions, supported by verifiable rationales, ARE effective!
5. In the case of local or state races beyond your voting precinct -- wherein
political decisions may, nonetheless, ultimately impact YOU and YOUR family --
so state. Recipients will then understand why you are concerned.
6. In the case of the California June 7th elections, ACT NOW! (Email's fast,
but lots of folks are voting by absentee ballot, well before Election Day.)
Most of all: Believe that timely-informed, well-informed voters WILL make the
most responsible choices. (True or not, special-interest dictatorship is the
WHY I GOT OFF THE FENCE AND BECAME A SUSPECT, uh, POLITICAL ADVOCATE
Regarding my #038-#040 advocacy re the gubernatorial and Secy-of-State races:
When I began this year's push for [landmark] California legislation to require
computerized filing of, and online public-access to, significant lobbyist and
campaign-finance disclosures, I planned to remain politically-neutral re the
upcoming California campaign zoo.
But, one of the dangers of wading around in political swamps (cesspools?) is
that ya quickly learn a *lot* more about the players and their *actual*
character - or lack of it - than you do as "merely" a concerned citizen,
dependent upon sound-bite newscasts and sheep-herd, band-wagon print
reporting (the Tanya Harding mega-trivia ink-tons being a recent example).
Even worse: There is *extensive* astute, accurate, penetrating reporting by
astute and diligent print and broadcast journalists of *important* information
that *is* valuable to voters making decisions that will effect us all. BUT,
its buried in the GLUT of print, video and audio that gushes through our daily
lives. Except for the too-often-trivial flashy iotas of political specifics
that catch the press' fancy and inordinate time and ink, much of the most
useful information flashes past in the glut, and is likely forgotten by
Election Day. Anyway ...
Among those who work around a capitol (or town hall, or Washingtoontown),
the *real* behavior and character of legislators and bureaucrats is actually
quite well-known - in detail! But it is too-rarely reflected in the flood of
gotta-be-balanced don't-offend-sources reporting, especially by reporters who
are outside of the capitol. *Any* capitol.
So: In the last several years, I've learned *lots* more than I ever knew
about the state's political players - some from watching them; much more
from numerous candid conversations with a broad range of very-experienced
public-interest activists who have worked the capitol more-or-less full-time,
and from a number of off-the-record conversations with various capitol
reporters and political writers whom I have come to know well enough to trust.
Part of it pleased and impressed me. Other parts disgusted me, and turned me
against several politicians of whom I originally had good impressions. But
that still wasn't enough to incite me to *publicly* support or oppose any of
the candidates in the upcoming elections.
THE LAST STRAW(S)
But, recent power-plays and verified bull-droppings, detailed in #038-#040,
have been so offensive - so *OUTRAGEOUS* - that they pushed me over the edge;
pushed me to advocate for some candidates, and publicly oppose others. Sadly,
that means that now *I* will be suspect - part of the turf.
But I *will* provide citations for my information and rationales for my
positions. And I certainly *encourage* your independent verification.
Hope you'll check out #030 thru #040 -- coming soon to a terminal near you.
And, I hope YOU'LL ACT!
AND A CLOSING PERSONAL FOOTNOTE
No, I won't be voting for or against any of the candidates I mention.
After last year's slogging around the odious capitol quagmire, pushing for
AB 1624, I was so disgusted with arrogant career politicians and destructive,
wasteful, stupid partisan turf tricks that I changed my party registration
from a wee-minor curmudgeon's party to "independent."
And unlike more aware and democratic states, California doesn't permit
voters to cross party [or un-party] lines in the primary elections. So often,
the whole state gets stuck with one of two extremes in the general elections.
AND THEIR ACTIONS OFTEN IMPACT FOLKS IN MANY OTHER STATES.
But my vote *is* useful in November. *Please* -- gimmie some decent choices.
Date: Sun, 29 May 1994 13:22:10 -0700
From: Jim Warren
Subject: File 3--GovAccess.036: Census data; NJ LegInfo; Ca. Secy of St loot lis
CENSUS BUREAU DATA COMING ON THE INTERNET
>Date: Tue, 15 Mar 1994 23:13:29 -0500 (EST)
>From: "Eric G. Grant"
> *** BETA TEST *** BETA TEST *** BETA TEST ***
>The United States Bureau of the Census has opened an information
>server on the internet. Please explore our service and tell us
>what you think. Connect to our beta site by pointing your client
>software to our universal resource locators (URL's):
> http://www.census.gov/ # use with mosaic, lynx, etc
> gopher://gopher.census.gov # use with gopher
> ftp://ftp.census.gov/pub # use with ftp
>For those of you using gopher you can get to us by:
> gopher gopher.census.gov
>Also, we plan to offer a majordomo mail server in the near future.
>If you have problems, questions, suggestions, etc, send email to:
NEW JERSEY LEGISLATIVE INFORMATION FOR THE INTERNET : BULLETIN NO.1
Forwarded by howarlof@CLASS.ORG Thu Mar 3 19:28:52 1994
Date: Thu, 3 Mar 1994 11:53:14 -0800
From: Paul Axel-Lute
March 3, 1994
Attached is the text of a bill endorsed by the New Jersey Law
Librarians Association, to make New Jersey statutes and legislative
bills available on the Internet without usage fees. Also attached
is an explanatory statement.
The draft bill has been submitted to the Chairmen of the Senate and
Assembly State Government Committees. Further bulletins will be
issued to inform you of the bill number and progress of the bill,
and to suggest actions in support of its enactment.
[Bill-text omitted here in GovAccess. For copy, contact Axel-Lute. --jim]
The bill has two purposes: (1) to make the most current
version of the statutory law as widely available as possible,
fulfilling the government's obligation to promulgate the law so
that it can be obeyed; and (2) to facilitate democratic government
by making the texts of pending bills readily available to the
public for feedback to the Legislature.
The states of California, Hawaii, Minnesota, and Utah
presently offer full-text legislative information via the Internet
without usage fees.
The Office of Legislative Services presently operates an
Electronic Legislative Information System, designed primarily for
the use of the Legislature itself, but also available to non-
governmental subscribers for $55 per month ($25/month for
additional users at same site) plus 75 cents per connect minute.
This system includes the "New Jersey Permanent Statutes Database"
(a very current compilation of the statutory law); texts of all
bills in the current Legislature, with status information and
subject-heading access; the Legislative Calendar; committee
membership information; and a "Private Databases Program" enabling
automatic tracking of particular bills or subjects.
The bill is partly modeled on California Government Code
section 10248 (added by 1993 Statutes chapter 1235). It would
require OLS to make the statutes, bill texts, bill tracking
information, legislative calendar and committee membership
information available on the Internet without access charges.
The bill would allow OLS to continue to provide a fee-based
service with added-value components, including the Private
Databases Program, full-text word searching, and archives of bill
texts from previous Legislatures. OLS would not, however, have a
monopoly on the provision of such service.
Revenue from non-governmental subscribers to the OLS system is
estimated at $120,000 per year. The cost of maintaining the
exterior connection is estimated at less than $10,000 per year.
For a worst-case scenario for the fiscal impact of this bill,
assume complete loss of the external revenue, and a doubling of the
exterior connection cost. This would mean an additional amount of
$140,000 per year to be covered by general tax revenue---about four
cents per year from each of New Jersey's approximately 3.5 million
taxpayers. (There would also be an initial cost for additional
equipment, on the order of $10,000.)
New Jersey executive departments also pay OLS for use of the
legislative system, at the reduced rate of 45 cents per connect
minute. Presumably, OLS would lose much of this internal revenue,
as departments find it cheaper to access the information through
the Internet. There could therefore be budgetary adjustments
lowering the departmental budgets and correspondingly increasing
the OLS budget, with zero net fiscal effect.
Paul Axel-Lute Rutgers Law Library tel.(201) 648-5977 or -5964
Collection Dev't 15 Washington St. firstname.lastname@example.org
Librarian Newark NJ 07102 USA rev.3/2/94
SECY.OF STATE CANDIDATES NOT YET INVITED TO SUBMIT COMPUTERIZED DISCLOSURES
In California, campaign-finance disclosures for candidates seeking state
office are filed with the Secretary of State's Office. In January and again
in March, that Office invited the Governor candidates to voluntarily file
their disclosures in computerized form, along with their required paper
I asked press contact Melissa Warren (no relation :-) in that Office if the
candidates for Secretary of State had also been invited to volunteer digital
filings. She said that they had, but only Acting Secretary of State Tony
Miller had done so (in March). He did.
On 4/18, I faxed a query about this to all of the candidates, asking for
their positions on computerized disclosures, and asking why they had not
voluntarily filed in computer form - requesting a prompt reply since I would
be reporting on it and was "on deadline."
On 4/20, after no responses from any of the candidates, I reported in
GovAccess.034 that Miller was the only Secy of State candidate to volunteer
computerized disclosures. True, but it turns out that the other candidates
had not yet been asked to do so, by the Secy.of State's office.
CANDIDATES' RESPONSES - AND WOO'S NON-RESPONSE
On 4/22, Assembly Member Bill Jones responded by fax, stating, "I have
not received the request for computerized filings," but that, "Per your
suggestion, I plan to submit my future reports by electronic filing."
Neat! - Definative committment, in writing (as I'd requested).
On 4/26, Bill Julian called. He's Legislative Consultant to Assembly Member
Gwen Moore's legislative committee (though not one of her Secy-of-State
He said Moore's campaign Treasurer didn't recall receiving such a request,
and asked how they might do it. (I suggested asking the Secy of State's
Office, but thought a computer filing would be accepted by them in almost any
form, since it was all voluntary.)
No commitment. No written or faxed response since then.
Bill also told me of Moore's AB 3615. Apparently, it proposed computerized
filings, but was just killed in the Assembly Elections Committee with
Chairwoman Diane Martinez (D-East L.A.) providing the swing-vote against it.
(Bill said he didn't know why.)
Los Angeles City Council Member Mike Woo, the third Secy-of-State candidate
(who has raised the most loot), hasn't bothered to respond at all, though he
has a staffed Secy-of-State campaign operation and fax machine.
SECY OF STATE'S PRESS OFFICE GOOFED
I asked Sos's Ms. Warren about those who said they didn't recall an invite to
volunteer digital filings.. She checked further and said she had been
mistaken; that copies of the Gov-candidates' invitation-to-file-digitally
had been sent to all the legislators (including Moore and Jones), but that
explicit invitations had NOT yet been sent to the non-Governor candidates.
(I urged that they do so, promptly.)
MOORE'S BILL WOULD IMPACT SECY OF STATE OPERATIONS, BUT SHE NEVER INVOLVED 'EM
I also asked Ms. Warren about Moore's AB 3615, since it would *significantly*
impact the Secretary of State's operations. She wasn't aware of it although
part of her function is to work with legislators on bills impacting the SoS.
Apparently, Moore and her staff never mentioned the bill to the Secretary of
State, much less involved them in drafting it (as is more or less customary),
and didn't seek their support before the Assembly Elections Committee -- where
it was killed through lack of adequate support.
Similarly, Moore and Hayden apparently didn't know about each other's bills,
even though Hayden's SB 758 addresses *exactly* the same issue and Moore's
former chief consultant, who has been doing some work for her, is a GovAccess
recipient and knows a great deal about my proposal and, presumably, SB 758
which is its legislative implementation vehicle. Further, Bill Julian, who's
generally on top of things, said he wasn't aware that SB 758 had anything to
do with computerized campaign filings.
And although Bill said AB 3615 reflected many of my January
recommendations on how computerized filings might be economically
implemented, and Bill and I have known each other since 1991, and we
have repeatedly discussed computer-aided govt-access -- especially
when I was trying to get Moore to support AB 1624, last year --
nonetheless, this was the first time they ever mentioned to me that
Moore was considering such legislation. Unmentioned until I asked
about Moore's not filing her disclosures digitally. And only *after*
the vote that killed it (in the absence of overpowering public
*Amazing* way to conduct the tax-payers' and voters' business!
Date: Tue, 31 May 1994 16:29:08 -0700
From: Jim Warren
Subject: File 4--GovAccess.038: ACTION ALERT - Needed action
May 31 1994
[ This is longer than I intended, as a "relatively-brief personal election-
related advocacy." But it includes much of what I intended to put in 039-040,
and I also realized this could be a "tutorial-by-example" - illustrating the
techniques I used to help push AB1624 through the California Legislature, last
year. Curse its length; praise that 039 and 040 will be "back on topic."
Also, I'm still backlogged in my email; phone of fax if urgent. --jim ]
PARTICIPATING (NOW!) IN THE PROCESS OF OUR OWN GOVERNANCE - BY EXAMPLE
The vision thing:
Access to government is *NOT* primarily so we can learn the whims and dictates
of our incumbent Masters - as joyful and fearful, but always-obedient serfs.
Access to government is primarily so we may effectively *participate* in the
process of our own governance.
The operational principles:
GovAccess.027 offered nuts-n-bolts generic details of how one might pursue
powerful, effective, net-based, computer-aided GRASSROOTS political action
(also published in the Apr/May issue of BoardWatch magazine, reaching about
60,000 bulletin-board sysops and users).
The method uses the essential tools of *all* effective citizen action:
* Person-to-person, "word of mouth" personal advocacy, always most powerful.
* Timely access to verifiable information on which to base political actions.
* Timely mass communications, *always* essential to coordinate and effect
informed action by the sovereign body politic.
The operational example:
The following exemplifies a *partial* implementation. (Full implementation
would include *much* greater net-aided coordination, and *much* more outreach
from those on the net to citizens who are not [yet] users of our *modern* news
and information media.)
This illustrates a possible [hopefully-effective] advocacy statement, and
how one might encourage its maximum distribution and impact. Incidentally,
although I've been writing since 1975 (and taught for ten years, earlier),
it still took three tries and more than two days for me to draft this missive.
(It *ain't* easy to draft an effective[?] advocacy statement.)
Full disclosure, plus apologies:
And: This is *most-definitely* ardent personal political advocacy on my part,
virulently-biased by what I've learned and views I hold (as is *always*
true of advocacy :-). I encourage you to equally-advocate *your* views.
Advance apologies: Some of you who receive GovAccess may also receive the
following as a separate message, though I will try to avoid dups. But, time's
too tight for everlate-me to do the massive merge-purge of the GovAccess list
with my numerous other e-lists - as I *should* do.
My sincere apologies as a most-imperfect person. Flame me at will.
A TIME-SENSITIVE PERSONAL-ADVOCACY MESSAGE TO ONLINE CONTACTS
Subject-- An URGENT request that you act, NOW! (if you agree :-)
I apologize for inflicting this on you without first verifying that you're
interested, but it's so important that I'm risking your ire and your flames.
But at least most of it's an optional explanatory "footnote."
I'm writing to solicit your action regarding some June 7th election issues.
[Suspicion-flags instantly appear.]
Unless you have sound reasons for doing otherwise, if you're in California
[I'm sending this to a number of folks], I hope you will:
* Support TONY MILLER for the California SECRETARY OF STATE,
Or at least, OPPOSE Gwen Moore for Secy of State (reasons follow).
* Support TOM HAYDEN as Democratic GOVERNOR nominee, at least as a protest.
* Support RON UNZ as the Republican GOVERNOR nominee, as a protest vote.
* Support PHIL ANGELIDES for Calif. TREASURER, as a protest against Roberti.
And if you are NOT in Californica [sic :-) ], I hope you will circulate this
msg to everyone you know who *is* in California. *Their* decisions well may
impact *you* - for better or worse. For example, the tax revolts of the late
'70s began with Calif's Prop.13, and the mandate for online access to state
legislation created by Calif's AB 1624 in 1993 is now proposed in about a
dozen other states - with imprefections inflicted by some of these folks.
It would also help if you wrote a *brief* letter to the editor of your local
newspapers - about these candidates/issues, and/or also giving them a "heads
up" about the growth of net-aided access to government.
Many thanks for your attention. Hope you'll act. SOON!
Jim Warren, columnist for MicroTimes, Government Technology, BoardWatch, etc.
email@example.com (also, firstname.lastname@example.org, but not for political msgs)
345 Swett Rd., Woodside CA 94062; voice/415-851-7075; fax/415-851-2814
[If you're interested in computer-aided government-access, I'd be delighted
to add you to my GovAccess distribution-list; one or a few notices per week.]
P.S. - OPTIONAL READING
If you are hesitant about my recommendations - or just want to be infuriated
by the stunts of career politicians :-) ...
I hadn't planned to pursue any public advocacy re these June 7th elections.
But as you may know, I spent much of last year as a flaming open-government
advocate, pushing [successfully] to mandate online-access to legislation.
And, this year, I'm pushing for online campaign-finance disclosures .
In that process, I've learned far more than I could ever have known from the
"outside," about state government and its players - good and bad. And recent
events added to the outrages of last year have pushed me off my arse and into
REGARDING THE SECRETARY OF STATE -- this is the Office that accepts
political-disclosure filings. The SoS can either encourage and facilitate
public access, or make "mere" citizens' access *very* difficult.
TONY MILLER became Acting Secretary of State early this year. Since then,
he has asked statewide candidates to voluntarily file their required
disclosures in digital form. He is *vigorously* supporting legislation
(Senate Bill 758, by Hayden) to *require* computerized filings and net-based
public access. And, he is making state election-night vote-results available
online -- which I believe is a "first" in the nation.
Miller is the *only* candidate for Secretary of State (a $32.6-million agency)
who has significant administrative experience, a career administrator rather
than career politician. He was also a founding member of the Fair Political
Practices Commission. He was Chief Deputy Secy of State for 13+ years, after
being SoS Chief Legal Counsel beginning in 1976.
Miller is also urging that the Secy of State be made a non-partisan office -
a *much*-needed change for this administrative post.
And, unlike some other operations in Sacramento, the Secy of State's office
has *not* been involved in major corruption or waste scandals.
In contrast (as detailed in the 5/19 issue of the Sacramento News & Review),
GWEN MOORE's hand-picked, personally-supervised senior staffer was busted by
the FBI in 1988 and was sentenced to four years on corruption charges. SN&R
reports some of his *appalling* taped statements to undercover agents as he
demanded more money in exchange for their special-interest legislation, that
Gwen Moore then authored and carried. (There was insufficient evidence to
indict her - except, at the least, for *abysimal* staff choice and oversight.)
Perhaps a slow learner, Moore in 1993 authored and carried special-interest
legislation exempting United Parcel Service from PUC regulations. SN&R
(much of the issue was devoted to political corruption) reported that UPS
never before contributed to Moore's campaigns, but gave her $3,000 days after
she got the legislature to pass their bill, another $1,000 immediately after
it was signed into law, and then waited until the first month of the next
reporting period to give her another $4,000, plus $1,756 in non-monetary
Politics-as-usual in Kickback City. Please note: The Secy of State's office
handles *massive* filings by wealthy corporations and businesses, as well as
huge campaign-finance disclosures - to name *part* of their responsibilities.
THE LAST STRAW - that pushed me into this advocacy: Until a few weeks ago,
Moore appeared to have little chance of becoming Secy of State. The race was
between Acting SoS Tony Miller and Mike Woo, a powerful Los Angeles career
politician with no administrative experience but a huge ability to raise loot
(*much* more largess than administrator Miller has been able to raise).
As reported in mid-May in the Sacramento Bee, SF Chronicle and SF Examiner,
Woo paid gubernatorial-candidate Kathleen Brown's campaign manager $90,000
to be recommended for Secy of State in the "California Democratic Voter
Checklist" statewide mailer. But Assembly Speaker Willie Brown - who had
appointed Moore to her powerful (profitable?) position Chairing the Utilities
and Commerce Committee - reportedly insisted that the checklist recommend
Gwen Moore for SoS, or he wouldn't endorse Kath.Brown (no relation). Done!
Well, this here little E-mailer ain't goin' to millions, and I'm not gettin'
paid to send it, but maybe the net has some grassroots clout of its own.
REGARDING THE GOVERNOR'S RACE, State Treasurer Kathleen Brown (Jerry Brown's
sister), Insurance Commissioner John Garamendi and State Senator Tom Hayden
(yes, the ex- Mr. Fonda :-) are seeking the Democratic nomination for Guv.
Kath.Brown has a 20-point lead, obviously a shoo-in. Hayden reportedly
doesn't have a chancenhell. Let's use the situation to deliver some messages:
Note: Until last year, as a naive outsider I was so impressed by Kath. Brown
that I seriously considered volunteering to set up a "net presence" for her
campaign. But then I learned more from public-interest sources in Sacramento.
As Treasurer, Kath. Brown took over $800,000 from investment and bond firms
seeking business from her Office - known in the bond industry as "pay to play"
(see San Jose Mercury News, 5/29/94; even so, SJMN is recommending her).
Brown didn't stop until about the time the SEC halted the practice (now being
appealed by another state's Democratic Party Chair). I think this *sucks*!
Additionally, Garamendi and Hayden have voluntarily filed their campaign-
finance reports in computer form, while Kathleen Brown has refused to even
acknowledge Secy of State Tony Miller's repeated requests. Small wonder.
Hayden's primary platform focuses on the need for campaign-finance reform.
Having seen it operating, up close and odious, I agree that special-interest
loot is *THE* single greatest danger to responsible government.
Hayden is also the author of SB 758 that would require online computerized
political disclosures, with almost no cost to tax-payers or candidates.
The REPUBLICAN Gov's race is a shoo-in for incumbent Pete Wilson - giving
another opportunity for a protest vote. Wilson has repeatedly failed to
file his campaign-finance disclosures in computer form. And his DMV and
Office of Information Technology Director are in the middle of an outrageous
mess involving $44-million in worthless computers, with investigations of
possible wrong-doing now underway. Computer entrepreneur Ron Unz is the only
useful challanger to Wilson - spending millions of his own [earned!] money to
take Wilson to task, and he offers to serve for a dollar-a-year .
These are the reasons I'm urging votes for Hayden (Democratic nominee) and Unz
(Republican nominee) *AND* that each of us TELL THE CANDIDATES who are online
the reason(s) for the protest votes:
Gov. Pete Wilson: PeteWilson@delphi.com
Kathleen Brown: email@example.com
Tom Hayden campaign: firstname.lastname@example.org
SB 758 support msgs: email@example.com [Hayden legislative staffer]
You are welcome to use any or all of this in your email to anyone.
Lastly, REGARDING THE CALIFORNIA TREASURER'S RACE. The Democratic primary
is essentially between business-person and state Party chair Phil Angelides,
and multi-decade state politician Dave Roberti, former Leader (dictator!) of
the state Senate - now seeking some other office in the face of term-limits.
Roberti was the one who placed most of the Senators who were convicted in
the FBI's 1988 corruption sting in the powerful positions from which they
peddled their influence - and Roberti *ain't* dumb. He recently beat back
an effort to recall him, but by much less of a winning margin than a 28-year
legislative veteran in a 2/3-Democratic liberal district should have received.
And now Roberti wants to take over Kathleen Brown's *lucrative* position as
unseen Treasurer. I bet the pay-to-play bonds brokers can hardly wait! - and
the rest of us can pay and pay and pay higher taxes for higher interest-rates.
Additionally, it was Roberti that smoothly slipped in the only serious
degradations that were inflicted on AB 1624 last year, which now limit *all*
of us online, to less than optimal access to legislative information, AND are
too-often being reproduced in other states' online-legislation proposals.
Thus, I'm recommending the only viable alternative Treasurer, PHIL ANGELIDES.
Nuf sed! Again, my apologies for this unsolicited "political" message, but I
feel it is a *crucial* good-government issue; decisions with national impact.
And I *grovelingly* apologize for the length of the "post-script" - but I
felt it was only fair to tell you *why* I was advocating my positions. At
least the electrons are fully recyclable.
THE OPERATIONAL COMPONENTS OF THE ADVOCACY MESSAGE ["HOW TO"]
1. The subject-line solicits immediate attention, but requires that the
recipient read at least the first part of the message to find out what it
concerns - which could not be adequately described in a one-line "Subject."
2. The opening paragraph is an appropriate (and sincere) apology.
3. The next part *briefly* states the primary requests, including who, what,
when, where and sorta-why - but as gentle requests; not zealous "demands."
If folks know and trust you (me) and don't have strong reasons for different
action, the request may be sufficient cause for them to act as you (I) ask.
4. The next parts are less-important requests, and an apparent "close" for
recipients who remain uninterested.
5. The "post-script" part is *VERY* important, especially in any political
advocacy [always-suspicious]: It gives information supporting the advocacy
AND means for its independent verification. And it's provocatively stated,
hoping to incite action.
The entire message alternates between evident personal zeal/fury and softening
and/or self-effacing humor. I happen to think the latter helps (others
disagree); either way, both components are my well-known personal style.
Note: I'm explaining why I wrote how I wrote, both as "how to" suggestions
for your possible use, and because I am completely comfortable with everyone
knowing exactly how and why I've written as I've written. No deceptions.
Mount the ramparts, folks! Join me in virulent personal political action.
Let us honor our heritage - we use it or we loose it.
Date: Fri, 3 Jun 1994 19:15:39 -0700
From: Jim Warren
Subject: File 5--GovAccess.039: Online election-night results;--Cal poli-dregs
Hot off the fax machine! --
A FIRST! [?]: JUNE 7th CALIF. PRIMARY-ELECTION RESULTS AVAILABLE ONLINE
California's Acting Secretary of State Tony Miller has arranged for what I
think is a "first" in the nation - global public access via gopher servers
across the Internet to election-night voting results.
To access the results on June 7th (and, presumably, for some time thereafter),
or to test it beginning Saturday, June 4th:
Gopher directly to caelections.advantis.com and select from the menu.
If you need to set up the gopher connection, access the Univ. of Minnesota,
select "Other Gopher and Information Servers" (Menu B), then
select all the world's gopher servers (Menu C), and
select the Advantis Global Network Services (Menu D) and you should see the
California Election Night gopher server.
For this primary, given that it's a first try, they will only be giving the
results of the state-wide races. But for the general elections in November,
their plan [hope!] is to provide online reporting of *all* the state races.
For more information, call the Secretary of State's Legislative and
Constituent Services Office at 916-445-6375.
[Thank gawd! - this is the last GovAccess posting on this stuff, except
perhaps to howl about the results after next Tuesday's June 7th elections.]
MORE MUCK FROM THE SACRAMENTO POLITICAL SWAMP
In GovAccess.038, I offered extensive/inflammatory recommendations and
information regarding some of the candidates in the California Governor's
and Secretary-of-State's campaigns, that will be decided next Tuesday (6/7).
Ahhh, but there's more!
THE FBI RECORDED GWEN MOORE'S NOW-IMPRISONED SENIOR STAFFER
In the '80s, Gwen Moore's hand-picked, personally-supervised representative
was Tyrone Netters.
Gwen Moore was *author* of what came to be called the "shrimpscam"
special-interest legislation sought and paid for by agents posing as
legislation buyers. As reported in the May 19, 1994, issue of Sacramento
News & Review Weekly:
Netters - Moore's chosen staffer - was recorded by the FBI telling an under-
cover agent, "Deal with me on the money ...my responsibility as a staffer,
I take care of my member [Moore] and I don't want you fuckin' around with,
with her at all, and she don't even wanna talk to you ... I don't have any
time for any petty bullshit like this, man, you ain't waving enough money.
I mean we deal with big money around here all the time ... I mean that
special-interest bill ain't no problem." And it wasn't.
Netters was convicted of corruption and sentenced to four years. There
wasn't enough evidence to indict Moore. If Moore becomes Secy of State, I
can hardly wait to see who she appoints to key positions - staff appointees
who to deal with *numerous* big-bucks politicians and wealthy corporations.
GWEN MOORE MISSED HER MOST-CRUCIAL CAMPAIGN-FINANCE FILING DEADLINE
Gwen Moore has been running for state offices since at least 1978. She
certainly knows how to run a campaign and how to file required disclosures.
Moore wants to be the Secy of State. The Secy of State is the recipient and
archivist of all campaign-finance disclosures.
But Moore didn't file her latest-required campaign-finance disclosure by its
May 26th deadline - only a minimum-information summary sheet.
The details of her campaign-finance receipts that were due May 26th, were not
filed until Thursday, June 2nd - just two days and a weekend before the polls
open on June 7th, precluding weekday political reporters from reviewing and
reporting on her finances before the election.
Although her report was generated by a computer, and she was explicitly asked
in writing to voluntarily also-file her disclosures in computer form, she
has not yet done so as of now (Friday afternoon).
FOOTNOTE ON PETE WILSON'S OPPONENT, RON UNZ
In #038, I recommended supporting Unz *AND* sending email to Wilson telling
him [PeteWilson@delphi.com] that, since he refused to offer his campaign-
finance disclosures in computerized form, as some other gubernatorial
candidates *have* been willing to do, you were supporting opponent Unz.
But, I *only* made this recommendation given that Unz doesn't have a chance
of winning - and his loosership can thus be used to make a point with Wilson.
Personally, *I* would NOT support Unz if I thought he had a prayer of
winning; I strongly disagree with *many* of his major positions.
USE GOVERNOR'S RACE TO DELIVER MESSAGE THAT CAMPAIGN-FINANCES ARE IMPORTANT
EMAIL TO PETE WILSON [Send your own, or put your name on this and send it.]
Subject--Your refusal to provide modern disclosures is unacceptable
Dear Governor Wilson,
(1) You accepted massive donations from special interests.
(2) But, you have steadfastly refused to voluntarily file campaign-finance
disclosures in computerized form, as repeatedly requested by the Secretary
(3) Campaign-finance reform is *THE* most-important reform needed in
government, and your actions indicate that you just don't get it.
Therefore, I am urging everyone I know to vote for Ron Unz, or at least
not vote for you - especially since you have such a lead.
If you cannot even make your already-computerized campaign-finance records
available to the public in their modern, computerized form, than you do not
deserve to be Governor of the nation's largest high-tech state.
RE DEMOCRATS: There are three major Demo candidates: Kathleen Brown,
John Garamendi and Tom Hayden. Brown's machine continues to suck in far more
special-interest loot than Hayden (who limits contributions to $94 per donor)
or Garamendi (who, incidentally, was the first to voluntarily file disclosures
in digital form). The Hayden and Brown campaigns are online. Therefore,
EMAIL TO KATHLEEN BROWN [Send your own, or put your name on this and send it.]
Subject--Last year, I almost volunteered to set up your online campaign
Dear Treasurer Brown,
After using the nets to help push through AB 1624 last year, mandating
online access to legislative information, I seriously considered volunteering
for your campaign. But then, and since, I found out more:
(1) You accepted massive donations from special interests including
$800,000 from bonds-houses and brokerages seeking state funds you invested.
(2) You steadfastly refuse to volunteer your campaign-finance disclosures in
computerized form, as repeatedly requested by the Secretary of State - which
becomes understandable, considering your $800,000 "pay-to-play" collections.
(3) Campaign-finance reform is *THE* most-important reform needed in
government, and your actions indicate that you just don't get it.
Therefore, I am urging everyone I know to vote for Tom Hayden, or at least
not vote for you - especially since you have such a lead.
If you cannot even make your already-computerized campaign-finance records
available to the public in their modern, computerized form, than you do not
deserve to be Governor of the nation's largest high-tech state.
MY EMAIL TO TOM HAYDEN [Send your own, or add your name to mine and send it.]
Subject--Your self-imposed limits on donations & SB 758 earned my support
Dear Senator Hayden,
I agree with you that the single most-important reform needed in government
is campaign-finance reform. Without it, government cannot be of, by or for
the People. Thus, I am urging everyone I know to vote for you, and urging
them to tell your leading opponent why (Treasurer Kathleen Brown, who took
$800,000 "pay-to-play" "contributions" from the bond houses and investment
firms with which she placed California's massive bonds investments).
We need to deliver the message that candidates who can't resist functional
bribes from well-funded special interests will loose votes.
However: I strongly *oppose* campaign-spending limits or tax-funded campaign-
financing. They are simply incumbency-guarantee mechanisms - since an
incumbent can always raise the limit more easily and then milk their
incumbency for much greater publicity. Voluntary *self*-limits, such as
you have adopted, plus MANDATES assuring that voters are fully-informed
as to the sources and amounts of large donations are the key.
Your SB 758 requiring computerized disclosures is one good step.
More importantly, disclosures detailing all major contributors should be
*required* to be included in every political mailing-piece and radio and TV
ad, just as the name and address of their Treasurer is required. It would
assure that the electorate is *finally* fully-informed about who buying whom,
and it would constitutional. Mandate that voters be fully and timely informed
- and in the process, degrade the propaganda power of political advertising.
Then, trust us to vote responsibly.
Giving money and power to government is like giving whiskey and car keys
to teenage boys. -- P. J. O'Rourke [from firstname.lastname@example.org]
End of Computer Underground Digest #6.48
E-Mail Fredric L. Rice / The Skeptic Tank