Friday, May 09, 2008

Someone searching for dirt on blogger.

For nearly a year, many of my faithful readers have emailed me directly, expressing a concern that the District will take every opportunity to find free-thinking employees accessing my blog site. While their concerns are real, the District's abilities are limited.

Someone has been feverishly searching for incriminating evidence against me. They routinely scour the portions of my server that allow public access. It isn't much, but it does offer a few meaningless pictures. The extent of their access is limited to sites like this and this. They cannot see much else, though they are trying.

Every day a script peruses my server looking for new and exciting images or websites that I might be developing. They also seem very interested in "keywordspy", thinking that it might lead to information they could use against me at some future date.

Oh well, it comes with the territory.


Anonymous said...

This is timely. We just received another new book on the subject of abuse of teachers. "White Chalk Crime: The Real Reason Schools Fail" by Karen Horwitz, M. Ed. (available at and at Actually, this book begins with the abuse of teachers and digs further, into the widespread tactics of school boards and administrators who are pathologically incapable of properly managing the public resource and treasure that is our school system. The system of abusing teachers is supported and maintained by many surprising institutions.

It is not a pleasant read. Ms. Horowitz not only tells of her treatment but the treatment of hundreds of other teachers who have been willing to step forward with their stories. More importantly, it tells the stories of average citizens who are trying to get information from the schools under FOIA statutes. It tells how school districts routinely, "loose" or "misplace" requested documents and how the courts are unwilling to level the legal penalties for withholding information as provided by law. One such story is from Pierce County. That's Tacoma, folks, just down the road. In this case, the courts ruled (Washington State Courts, not some foreign court in "the other Washington") that the requested documents were "lost" and required the CITIZEN TO PAY court costs of $10,000!!! How does that encourage democracy and open government?

These stories reveal the pattern of behavior by administrators that this blog has been trying to expose here in Edmonds. There are laws and penalties--$1000 per incident and 5 years in jail--in the State of Washington for withholding requested information from the public. How do administrators get around THAT? Simple. Every administrator knows: they "misplace" or "loose" them. Sound familiar?

Administrators use the power of their purse (which is YOUR tax dollars) to beat down and intimidate anyone who challenges them. They know that they have more money than you do and they will protract, delay, and postpone in order to exhaust anyone challenging them. That was the advise I received regarding pursuing legal action against the District; it had nothing to do with right or wrong or whether or not any laws had been violated. They have more money than you do; give it up. Where is the justice? Obviously, there is none.

That's how you get this story from Mark. District lawyers electronically trying to capture private information from their critics. And you are paying the bill! It's not going to the classroom. It's not money going to the education of your children. It is money being spent by the powerful to maintain their power. That's what Watergate was about-illegal political spying by the powerful on their enemies. It brought down a President when the public found out about it.

Buy this book. (I have no financial interest in it.) Look at the bibliography at the back; it cites dozens of sources from a variety of different fields (there is an extended discussion of the psychology of Abu Ghraib and how good people can go bad, it tells the story of a teacher who was bullied out of his job when he reported on-campus gun sales by students in the after-Columbine world). Get educated. Learn what's going on. Understand that those in power will do ANYTHING to stay in power: shred and misplace documents; lie to their employees; pit one group of employees against another group; eliminate anyone who questions what they are doing, funnel money to their friends; electronically probe a blog; yada, yada, yada.

This "management style" is bad news for the district and even worse news for your children. No one person will be able to take these people on alone. But there is strength in numbers. If we all DEMAND a change, change will happen.

Anonymous said...

If administration would just answer bell and give taxpayers an HONEST day, the attorneys would be out of a job themselves. But.... there are so many employees that want more than me, they will kill to achieve an insignificant lot of free time. All those should be ashamed! This begins in HR.