Tom Corbett Gets Slapped Down

Facing a mountain of criticism from local and national news agencies as well as a firestorm of commentary from social media sites, Pennsylvania Attorney General Tom Corbett backed down on his subpoenas yesterday.

Earlier this month, his office issued a subpoena demanding private information on users critical of his campaign.  With growing accusations that his office has improperly flexed its muscle to help his gubernatorial campaign, perhaps they finally realized that flexing their muscle to help his gubernatorial campaign might not be the best way to respond.

Because if he was truly right — if he truly believed he had such powerful evidence that he needed to invoke the power of a grand jury in order to hear it — he should never have backed down.  You don’t give up a fight when you’re right, and we don’t pay our politicians to back down when they’re pursuing a just cause.

Let’s assume — for the sake of argument — that Corbett’s subpoenas really were part of a criminal investigation.  And let’s assume that the use of a grand jury to seek evidence for a criminal trial that has already concluded is somehow appropriate.  And, just to play devil’s advocate, let’s assume that CasablancaPA really is Brett Cott.

Assuming Corbett was right on all counts, that leaves just one question unanswered:

With Cott having been rushed off to prison immediately after his sentencing, why is the blog and Twitter account in question still being updated?

Either CasablancaPA is not Cott, or the account password has been shared across multiple people.  Tom Corbett was either wrong in his assumption about the account’s true owner, or he willfully used his office’s power to obtain the names and IP addresses of innocent citizens who happened to criticize his campaign.

Tom Corbett for Governor?

Generally speaking, I don’t do politics on this site.  If it’s politics you want, you can Google the name of your favorite candidate or party and find approximately eleventy trillion other sites on which to get your fix.  But earlier this month, our Attorney General did something that can only generously be described as “questionable”:

He subpoenaed Twitter and Google to reveal the identity of some people who have been critical of his campaign for governor.

Continue reading Tom Corbett for Governor?

Rendell and the Furloughs

Sounds like a really, really, really bad college band, doesn’t it?

Anyway, I don’t want to brag, but I told you so.  According to a story on WHTM:

The state Supreme Court said Monday it agreed with state workers’ unions and ruled against the position that Gov. Ed Rendell had taken leading up to the July 2008 budget deal. The unions had argued that the federal Fair Labor Standards Act trumped a section of the state constitution that requires an appropriation in order for money to be paid out of the state treasury.

This is a huge victory for us bottom-of-the-ladder state workers.  But it’s a hollow victory, because although it reaffirms what we’ve known all along, the state still chose to knowingly break the law.

Continue reading Rendell and the Furloughs