Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Ravenstahl to Motznik: Stop Blogging About Me

According to the Tribune-Review, Interim Mayor Luke "Handcuffs" Ravenstahl has asked his friend and designated attack dog, City Councilmember Jim Motznik, to cease blogging, at least about any topics that concern our Interim Mayor. What a shame. And just when the whole thing was just starting to get interesting. As the Tribune-Review article tells the story:

Pittsburgh Mayor Luke Ravenstahl today asked City Councilman Jim Motznik to stop writing about him in a blog the Overbrook councilman began publishing online this week.

"We have issues to explore," said Ravenstahl, who’s running for reelection in the May primary. "The blogosphere is not, in my opinion, the place to do that."

A blog – or Web log – is an online journal that contains the unedited thoughts of the author and the unfiltered responses of readers.

In his blog titled “Motznik Speaks Out,” Motznik accused fellow councilman and mayoral contender Bill Peduto of spreading lies about Ravenstahl’s October 2005 encounter with police at Heinz Field before a Steelers game.
Obviously, I have a bit of bias here. But personally, I think the burghosphere is precisely the place to explore the issues that are facing our city. The article continues:
Peduto accused Ravenstahl today of encouraging Motznik to write a blog to dispel rumors that the mayor lied about parts of the incident with police.

"I think most folks understand that Jim Motznik and Luke Ravenstahl are two peas in a pod," said Peduto, who denies spreading rumors about Ravenstahl’s police incident. "There are no truths to what Jim Motznik is saying. It’s probably (being done) to protect his best friend, Luke Ravenstahl."

Ravenstahl said he did not tell Motznik to defend him.

"I did not put him up to it," Ravenstahl said today. "I respectfully suggested to him that he should refrain from this activity."
Damn it, Luke, Motznik's blog was just starting to make it fun to write about you again, and here you go and trample on the man's First Amendment right to embarrass the living shit out you. Well, I guess it was fun while it lasted.

I guess we can hold out some hope that Mr. Motznik will continue to blog about topics that don't concern Master Ravenstahl. But it won't be nearly as interesting as it could have been.

Interim Mayor Ravenstahl's order ("respectfully suggested", my ass!) for Mr. Motznik to cease blogging does, at least, lend some credence to the theory that the Councilmember's blog is now seen as a massive political blunder by the Ravenstahl campaign. Until Mr. Motznik dredged it back up, the Heinz Field incident was well and truly off of the Pittsburgh news radar. And now it's front page news all over again.

You know, Mr. Motznik, if you really are truly independent of the Ravenstahl machine, you could just blow them off. I certainly wouldn't take such an insult laying down. If you had any stones, you would keep posting articles on your blog, no matter what they are telling you to do. Maybe it's time to take a stand and show them that you won't be pushed around any longer. Come on, go for it! Who do they think they are, anyway?


Anonymous said...

Another pattern continues - Luke doesn't like what Cathy McNeilly has to say, he demotes her; Luke doesn't like what Officer Hoehn might say, Chief Harper refuses to order Hoehn to defend himself; Luke doesn't like that his Motzshit blog idea backfired, he begs his best friend to stop blogging about him.

This is precisely why the blogosphere is so critical - city employees are still terrified of speaking out against the boy tyrant, so the MSM has been handicapped in their efforts to get to the truth - blogs offer an avenue for that class of speakers to be heard.

For the most part, I'm very impressed by the level of restraint demonstrated by bloggers and commentators alike - with the exception of Motzshit, there is plainly a dedication among bloggers and commentators to walk an unspoken ethical line. I also think the blogosphere is a useful resource and must-read for the MSM. I, for one, skim the blogs as religiously as I do MSM postings & believe that blogs will play a role in this upcoming election. The interim mayor fears and disparages this vehicle because he can't control or buy it - this is precisely why the blogosphere is a credible entity. Comments are made without fear of repercussion.

Richmond K. Turner said...

Hah! You just think that you can comment without fear of repercussion! But, anonymous or not, you and I both know that I have kidnapped your puppy and will do unspeakable things to him if you do not leave positive comments here on this blog.

See? The blogosphere is incredibliy easy to control. Just kidnap a few house pets and it's yours!

Seriously, though, thanks for commenting. I think your points are extrmely valid. The ability to respond to these posts, especially anonymously, allows the rest of us to hear things that would otherwise have to be left unsaid. It's messy, prone to occasional inaccuracies, and difficult to manage... just like democracy is supposed to be.

Anonymous said...

Uh, that's not a puppy...