Thursday, January 3, 2013


One of the themes of this blog is the notion that if the powers-that-be don't like you, they are inclined to retaliate against you. Over the course of this blog, we feel we've presented plenty of examples when this has happened, not the least of which was the recent post about Lovel Pratt appearing to go after a small businessman for storing kayaks in his barn.

To further this point, have a look at the interest that the Trojan Heron attracts from various government authorities in a 24-hour period. Are these fans or is this surveillance? Perhaps it's a little of both (okay it's probably a lot more surveillance). At least it may provide an answer to what our public servants (especially Ecology) do all day.

If the authorities take so much interest in a little ol' blog, just imagine the malevolent interest they'll take in you if you get crosswise with any of their rules. Just ask Charles Dalton.

In the past 24-hours or so, the Trojan Heron has registered the following hits from various government agencies:
  • 39 hits from the Department of Ecology
  • 25 hits from San Juan County
  • 16 hits from Tulalip Government Services
  • 10 hits from Arizona State Government
  • 1 hit from the Washington Attorney General
Thanks for stopping by!
Trojan Heron readers at various government agencies over a roughly 24-hour period. (Click to enlarge then right-click to download)


  1. Arizona State Government? What's the connection?

  2. Maybe they think herons fly south for the winter and they'll nab it when it crosses the border.

    My hunch is there are probably some ex-Ecology wetland folks or other personal/professional connections between Ecology and the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality.

    Seems like a pattern suggestive of an email issuing forth from Ecology to their professional contacts and a bunch of folks with too much time on their hands sprang into action.

    Seems like an opportunity to file public records requests with the State of Arizona to find out more.

    RED ALERT! RED ALERT! The Trojan Heron is talking!

  3. How many but why is someone from the Friday Harbor School District signing on from a school computer? You don't happen to have the computer IP address, do you?

  4. Does TH ID or track Comment input?

    I would hope you resist that temptation just as you smartly and rightly let your readers take on those who don't understand the TH is all about exposing blatant hypocrisy and the foolish County notions of government.

    The real point of the piece on Lovel and some poor bastard storing some kayaks in his barn is the ratting out of your neighbor. Where will this end? Talk about the fraying of community fabric.

  5. Agreed. We don't track comment input. It's not part of our repertoire, nor do we want it to be.

    The stat trackers give us a general idea of where our traffic is coming from. That's all.

  6. The community fabric wouldn't be fraying if the FOSJ hadn't assigned themselves the mission of removing all trace of human life from San Juan County. Come to think of it, no humans, no community, no community fabric to fray!

  7. This isn't on the surveillance topic but since this is the most recent thread, I am posting it here.
    In honor of one of the canidates from Orcas....
    Please think of the Kinks Song, "LOLA"....Get the music going... (I was working on a version of CAOla, but that is still on the drawing board)....

    I met her in a bar down in old Eastsound
    Where you drink Kool-aid and pay with your visa
    V-I-S-A Visa
    She walked up to me and she asked me to vote
    I asked her her name and in a dark brown voice she said Lisa
    L-I-S-A Lisa lee-lee-lee-lee Lisa

    Well I’m not the world’s most liberal guy
    But when she pressed me hard, it opened my eye
    Oh my Lisa lee-lee-lee-lee Lisa
    Well I’m not dumb but I can’t understand
    Why cheap houses all over this land
    Oh my Lisa lee-lee-lee-lee Lisa lee-lee-lee Lisa

    We drank kool-aid and debated all night
    Under the compact florescent light
    She grabbed my shoulders and said vote for me
    Get me elected and then you’ll see
    Well I’m not the world’s most civic minded guy
    But when I looked in her eyes well I almost fell for my Lisa
    Lee-lee-lee-lee Lisa Lee-lee-lee-lee Lisa
    Lisa-Lee-lee-lee-lee Lisa lee-lee-lee-lee Lisa

    Homes built of hay
    Homes for the poor
    Do we want some more
    I got down on my knees
    Then I looked at her and she at me

    Well we’re comin up on election day
    And I have to say no vote for my Lisa
    Lee-lee-lee-lee Lisa
    Grants from the broke and broken grants
    It’s a mixed up muddled up government except for Lisa
    Lee-lee-lee-lee Lisa

    Well I got my ballot just a week before
    And I’d never voted for a liberal before
    But Lisa smiled and took me by the hand
    And said dear boy, we’re gonna save this land

    Well I’m not the island’s most political man
    But I know if she wins, it’s gonna hit the fan
    Because of Lisa
    Lee-lee-lee-lee Lisa lee-lee-lee-lee Lisa
    Lisa – lee-lee-lee-lee Lisa lee-lee-lee-lee Lisa

  8. Alan Shayo , former county code enforcement now work in Arizona as some sort of judge. He still keeps in touch with the old gang

  9. Ah yes, Allen Shayo, former B&B owner, originally from Poughkeepsie. He even wrote an article about a bridge in Poughkeepsie for one of our local news outlets once.

    I believe he was the one who commenced enforcement against Dalton. Now he's a judge for the Industrial Commission in Arizona. It could very well be him keeping tabs on things from afar.

  10. xD ... I like the song!

  11. Alan, more likely watching to see that none of his skeleton's are exposed to the light of day.

  12. Judge Rules against EPA that storm water runoff is NOT a pollutant

  13. Awww ... busted.

    Actually, though, this blog is entertaining and informative. If you are concerned that I'm not attending to my job duties by accessing this from my work computer, I can give you contact information for my supervisor. But there is no more surveillance involved than when I read the New York Times. And for sure there's good information here. You don't have a problem with me coming here for information, do you?

    Yes, the iceberg graphic and the most egregious anonymous comment are posted at my cubicle, but wouldn't you do the same. All in fun, right?

    If nobody from a government agency accessed this blog, would you post a comment that you are ignored by those who should be paying attention to you? Probably. (I know, this is speculation, but it's my guess that you would.) So when you are respected by this attention, you make an accusation of surveillance. Also, the very silly statement that government workers are "the powers that be." Can we find a way to get a positive nod from you? Probably not, but I will keep reading from wherever I am. I guess I should say that's my right.

  14. Holy crap, Ed! Speaking of surveillance, you looked at my profile on Linkedin. You can get much more information out of me by talking to me in person. I will buy you lunch. Can we set a date and place?

  15. We don't have any problem at all with our government fans checking us out at work because we hope that do provide important civic information (expanding civic knowledge). We honestly do try.

    Thanks for the compliments Kit and the good points relating to damned if you do and damned if you don't (i.e., your comment about "would I post a comment about being ignored if no one read it" is a fair point).

    Curiosity inspired information gathering is a good thing, and the sentiment of the post has more to do with the intentions of some in government than have different motivations. We, feel, for example, that pubic information requests suggest a demonstrated proclivity to abuse among some Ecology staff and some (and I emphasize only some) County staff. We also recognize that there are many in the County who would like to see improvement and reform.

    So everyone in government and elsewhere keep reading, as long as you think we have something worth reading about ... and as far as whatever is done with whatever "scrutiny" we might be paid for the wrong reasons by some bad government apples ... that's just the way it goes. We'll be around regardless, and we just find it interesting where this scrutiny comes from sometimes.

  16. Here here! Several posts on here in the past have shown that Ecology (what was the wording used by Stockdale once?) feels the need to put "boundaries" on individuals. Whenever Ecology becomes preoccupied with some group or individual here in the San Juans or elsewhere, they can't seem to include fewer than 8 senior managers in on the conversation. It's that kind of repulsive nanny-statism that comes to mind whenever the Department of Ecology is involved.

    They are the behavior police.

  17. One more thought about the "powers-that-be" comment ... one of the reasons why I use that statement is because the lines of authentic authority are so opaque here that it is hard to understand how our local government works. In many ways, the recently-passed CAOs reflect a similar predicament. I defy anyone to tell me what they mean. They are incomprehensible.

    A friend of the Trojan Heron who did work in Mexico sums our situation up nicely (I think) by saying that, even though he worked in Mexico for 15 years, he has never seen government as screwed up as it is here. At least in Mexico, he says, he knew who to bribe.

    Here, it seems, we can only aspire for such clarity.

  18. If Kit buys the coffee I do hope it will be fair traded.

    The word that pops up is "Byzantine"

    What's comically scary about the sudden agency interest in the Geology Board's recent smack-down of dowsers, water witchers and geomancers disguised as official wetland delineating pseudo-scientists is how obviously coordinated and linked it was.

    Look at the time stamps.

    In a Byzantine bureaucracy nearly all power is controlled and capriciously administered by mid and lower level bureaucrats who generally got their jobs through patronage, nepotism, local mafias, bankers, fat-cats and aristocrats. We have worked really hard in this country to cultivate great ethics and practice for public service. It is a real tragedy when we see our local government beginning to look like a parody of an outpost of the Ottoman Empire.

    This is hilarious.

  19. As to the clarity on the bribes. It seems to me that its a pretty well known fact that if you "donate" enough money to the friends that they will not sue over your dock, or waterfront improvements. Now that they have been granted [pun intended] the franchise on all upland properties, it would be so much easier if they would just make a published price list. X number of dollers for a dock, X number of dollars for a garden shed, to go after the guy next door etc. oh wait is there a law about doing that? Call the other organised crime families and see how they do it.

  20. Well I'm not sure what the status is, but seemed like the County wanted to come up with a new permit fee structure ... user fees if you will, to help pay for this exciting new program when no other money is available.

    if the Friends could help shake that down for a percentage? That sounds like a great public-private partnership to me.

    The problem with publishing a fee schedule is that you would have transparency. None of that in San Juan County.

    You'd sort of be obliged to charge a known fee. How much better to be appropriately vague, that way you could apply a "sliding scale", allow for "means testing" and other creative ways to be "flexible" in how fees are determined and exacted.

    It is also important to be able to manufacture anonymous complaints in order to have a pretext. "You know, we could make this complaint just disappear. Would you like that?"

    I guess anonymous postings on the Trojan Heron may look similar to some people. Just send all your money to the Trojan Heron, and they'll make all those incivil comments just go away.

  21. I read TH at least once day.. sometimes more. I value the posting with supporting documents and enjoy reading all the comments, no matter if I agree with them or not. I am able to hear other view points without making it personal. I learn from other viewpoints. My question is " What is the plan of action?" The new council and the county employees need to be accountable for their actions or non actions,their misconduct etc.. so do we write letters, go to council, is there a plan? ACTION in numbers... This dialogue needs to be heard by all in the San Juans.
    In the last year or so i have been to many meeting including the Charles Dalton meeting with many I did not feel I had much in common. To my great surprise, there is not a great divide as many would have you believe. Only San Juan County could bring the right and left together and together we should take action.

  22. What a great comment, and I think we are all struggling to find that way forward. Love to hear suggestions from other readers.

  23. I don't think that "Kit Rawson" is any more "Kit Rawson" than "Sharon Kivisto" was Sharon Kivisto. Unless there's a blue Blogger ID, you can't even tell that it's the same person making comments under "real" names. Besides, what "egregious" comments have ever been made about Mr. Rawson? He doesn't even make it to the Heron's tag list.

  24. Generally, I'd like to take commenters at their word (so to speak). Of course, games can be played, but I'd like to believe that comments are genuine, and I'd like to believe that when people use their real names that they are really using their own real name, and that if people are posting anonymously or under a pseudonym, that they have good reason for doing so ... but whatever their reasons, it's really none of my business, and (good) comments are welcome from anyone.

    The mentality that says something bad CAN happen so we must design a whole set of rules (or set of laws) to prevent an improbability ... that's an approach that I do not typically favor.

    Our comment system on this blog is imperfect. There are some problems from time to time. However, any effort to improve it would render it more imperfect, in my opinion.

    The same is true for many laws and rules in society these days. The "solution" often seems just as, if not more imperfect, than an improbability that drives its formulation.

  25. "Surveillance" gets heat on TH, in my view, because those who participate in TH are from all sides of the political spectrum, but have a common like and dislike.

    They like freedom, and dislike oppression.

    Now, let us stop ragging on the medium and get on with the message. (Gotta give the DOE something to sweat over.)

  26. One of the respondents asks "What is the plan of action?" and says further, that "this dialogue needs to be heard by all in the San Juans". Our competition for the attention of the average SJ Co. citizen is formidable. We are constantly bombarded with slick mailings from the FOSJs, Island Rec, the Library District, the, and others, all claiming to be working on our behalf, and doing what's good for us. All of our opinions, facts, and ideals are in the closet. We need some sort of a "coming out party" and method of getting the "low informed" more aware of what's happening.

  27. An Idea.. for "coming out party" .
    Let's not compete with slick mailers or public meetings. TH strongest platform is this blog and video. Trojan Heron TV., short weekly video logs of top 3 topics of the week that SJ citizens should be aware of. short in time- get their attention and link it back to the blogspot for comments on youtube etc..
    This allows people to share topics via whatever social media, private email as they wish.
    Charles Dalton video was successful and shared widely. Having TH not affiliated with one group or another you will be able to reach a broader spectrum of people. Just a thought.