Friday, April 25, 2014

Dear Anthony: re slow Friday afternoon

From: Rob Shattuck <>
Date: Fri, Apr 25, 2014 at 5:30 PM
Subject: Dear Anthony: re slow Friday afternoon
To: Anthony Cook <>
Cc: "" <>, "" <>, "" <>, "" <>, "" <>, "" <>, "" <>, "" <>, "" <>, "" <>, Scott Beason <>, "" <>

Dear Anthony,

I am having a slow, late Friday afternoon, so I thought I would write again.

I know I don't exist for the other candidates, and they will not respond to anything I write about, but what the heck, eh?

In my "Press release" re suggestion for improving Congress, I propose the idea of using our fantastic data capture and collection technology to create "open" Congressional offices, and that there would be no private communications between a Congressional office and the outside world.  I think this idea could go a long way in changing the way Washington works.

In my telephone interview with Dale Jackson yesterday (podcast here), Dale did not think much of idea.

Let's explore the idea a little.

It would emphatically put at the mental forefront that lawmakers are public servants who are there to serve all their constituents. Particular constituents may be favored, but no one should be favored secretly.

The long practice and experience that governments have with "sunshine laws" might be helpful in approaching my "open" Congressional offices idea.  For info about "sunshine laws", see this link.

The idea needs to put up for discussion so we can begin to hear what arguments there are to be made against the idea.  Two of the candidates are state legislators, and surely they could give views and particularly arguments they have, if they think the idea is not a good idea from the point of view of a lawmaker's constituents.

Let's talk about mechanics. I would envision lawmakers and staffers having two cellphones, one for their strictly personal lives and the other for their Congressional office job.  The chip for the latter would capture all use, and the information on the chip would be uploaded daily to the data collection function of the "open" office platform, where it would be organized and searchable on the Internet.  I know that can seem very much an imposition, but remember these are public servants, and willingness to incur such an imposition would demonstrate a commitment to public service.

The cellphones would do data capture of meetings outside the office, and other data capture would be done with in office meetings and office computer use and electronic communications,etc.

As with "sunshine laws," there would be exceptions, including that there could be standards and conditions for when a constituent would be allowed to have private communications with a Congressional office.  I would be very interested in learning what our state legislator candidates think should be exceptions.

Everyone in society is now being exposed to massive, massive data capture and collection, and our society is trying to figure out how to deal with it.  Some of the data capture and collection is or will be viewed as wrongful or otherwise subject to legal prohibition. Will Brooke has said that lawmakers should be subject to the same things as the rest of us.  Let them make the case why the data capture and collection under my idea should not be implemented.

It is, of course, highly dubious that our Congress would voluntarily take the steps needed to impose my "open" office idea on themselves.

Thus the idea would only be an idea that the voters would force Congress to consider as part of its grand reform plan that it presents to the American people before November under my National Battle Plan.

Okey doke, Anthony, that's it for now on this slow Friday afternoon.  Don't let it interfere with your weekend.  I am sure the other candidates won't let it interfere with theirs.



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