Missy Has Open-Facebook Policy

missy-cartoon

It’s the wild west on Facebook, a place where even elected officials use the popular social communication outlet to share ideas, information and even political preferences. Consider this recent Facebook post by Missy McArthur, an elected member of the Redding City Council.

fyi, McArthur wears another hat as a member of the Steve Carlton for District Attorney campaign committee. That second hat might explain this recent post she broadcast to her 215 Facebook friends, including yours truly, in which she explains why she’s voting for Carlton rather than Jerry Benito, the current district attorney. McArthur’s post, below, is a reply to Donna C., one of McArthur’s Facebook friends. Here’s their exchange on Facebook:

“Hello Missy: I wondered if you could enlighten me, you appear to endorse Steve Carlton?? Not sure, but asking. I have observed two debates, one at the Redding Tea Party and one at Candidates night in CWD. He concerns me with not finishing a thought or sentence clearly! I liked Adam Martinez very much, but does that really warrant Mr. Carlton’s behavior?”

Thanks for asking, Donna.

Mr. Carlton is analytical and actually goes to court and tries cases all the time, unlike the current DA. (He doesn’t feel ‘special’ like he shouldn’t take off his shoes at the courthouse, even though he was the DA for about 10 yrs.) Steve Carlton is used to carefully considering his words before he speaks and is not used to “politic-speak” so many in public office (not me, I hope!) seemingly use to schmooze us.

I’m voting Carlton because I saw the horrible caricature the current DA allegedly had drawn by his staff on OUR TAXPAYING dime sent on OUR TAX-PURCHASED computers depicting a female defendant as a horse being ridden by a male prosecutor. I’m voting Carlton because I want my tax dollars used by someone who will go into the courthouse, even if it means taking off shoes, to do the job he was elected to do. I’m voting Carlton since I heard a story about a DA sending his investigator (illegally) to give a Sheriff Deputy a parking ticket in a legally parked spot, and then (illegally) tearing up the ticket when realizing the first error. I’m voting Carlton because of a woman prosecuted when her daughter died in a car accident, but a man was not prosecuted when a loaded gun was left untended: both are tragedies, what does prosecution do when grief does it all in both cases?

Then the Martinez case is the frosting on the cake. I watched the video. Martinez and the woman are against a speaker so he leans in close to shout-talk the way you do when the music is too loud. The guy walks up and hits him from the side; Martinez doesn’t see it coming. Martinez drops like
a sack of potatoes and whacks his head on the concrete, and later dies. No prosecution. Yeah, I’m a mom. That one is the final, final, FINAL for me. In short, I’m voting Carlton because of Steve Carlton’s integrity and he believes in “Justice for All!”

Again, thanks for asking, Donna!

Independent online journalist Doni Greenberg founded what’s now known as anewscafe.com in 2007 with her son, Joe Domke of the Czech Republic. Prior to 2007 Greenberg was an award-winning newspaper opinion columnist, feature and food writer recognized by the Associated Press, the California Newspaper Publishers Association and E.W. Scripps. She lives in Northern California in the tiny town of Igo.

Doni Chamberlain
Independent online journalist Doni Chamberlain founded what’s now known as anewscafe.com in 2007 with her son, Joe Domke of the Czech Republic. Chamberlain is an award-winning newspaper opinion columnist, feature and food writer recognized by the Associated Press, the California Newspaper Publishers Association and E.W. Scripps. She lives in Redding, California.
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25 Responses

  1. Avatar Mrs. Beans says:

    Very insightful into the thinking of someone in office. I have not made a decision as to this particular race for office, however, what concerns me the most is someone would again just spout off reasons without proper research…and others believe in what this woman says? And she makes major decisions for our city?

    I see videos all the time. Ms. McArthur, did you read the volumes of investigations associated with these cases? The video is one quick moment. So you base your entire "ruling" of these cases on one piece of evidence, maybe what was printed in local media? I may not always agree with Mr. Benito, but boy, he has a lot to review and compare to a silly thing called the law and precedence before rendering his decision.

    Question to Ms. McArthur: Before you make a major decision, are you reading the entire research or are you basing your vote on the Reader's Digest abridged video version? Or even worse, on what is circulating around in printed media as "facts" when they are mere opinions?

    I'll give you the shoe incident. There is a reason for security and all should abide. (But it made for a very funny cartoon on this very wonderful website.) But do you really know if Mr. Carlton has never asked for or expected favors in his position? I'm not suggesting he has. I do not know anything about his tenure in office. Just a hmm-wondering moment of mine.

    I must apologize for the long, maybe ranting, post. Because when I click the "submit" button, the world will be able to see my comments, much like the above post on FaceBook.

  2. Avatar Kathleen says:

    "the Martinez case is the frosting on the cake. I watched the video. Martinez and the woman are against a speaker so he leans in close to shout-talk the way you do when the music is too loud. The guy walks up and hits him from the side; Martinez doesn’t see it coming. Martinez drops like

    a sack of potatoes and whacks his head on the concrete, and later dies. No prosecution. Yeah, I’m a mom. That one is the final, final, FINAL for me. In short, I’m voting Carlton because of Steve Carlton’s integrity and he believes in “Justice for All!”

    I completely agree with the above statement. The lack of prosecution in that case was shameful! I can't imagine how the family of the victim felt seeing the video as we all did and I still find in heartbreaking.

    Having met Benito on more than one occasion at both political and social functions, I found him to be aloof, rude, disconnected and dismissive. (The type of person who, while talking to you, looks around to see if anyone more important is there to talk to.)That combination has made me believe a definite change is necessary. I'll be voting for Carlton as well.

  3. Avatar Michele says:

    Hi Doni,
    The tone of your article makes me think you disapprove of Missy's post – but I'm not clear about whether the issue is that she expressed her opinion so openly (seems like political people frequently endorse or critique candidates) or that she did it on Facebook. If so, I'd be interested in your take on why that is a problem. Or am I misreading the tone, and you just thought it was an interesting perspective to share?

    • Doni Greenberg Doni Greenberg says:

      I just thought it was an interesting exchange, made more interesting because of Missy's dual positions: Redding city council member and part of Steve Carlton's campaign committee.

      She's a public person expressing her private beliefs on Facebook, and I figured if I found it newsworthy, you might, too.

      This particular post brings up questions I struggle with regarding how our professional/private lives are sometimes blurred by our participation in online social outlets like Facebook.

  4. Avatar Sean Randall says:

    It's interesting to see how candidates, especially those running for local office who don't have the luxury of political advisers, use Facebook.

    I was recently "friend requested" by Assessor-Recorder candidate Ron Largent. On April 29th, he posted: Interesting conversation today with a voter….$163,000,000 paid in property taxes in Shasta County last year….claim made by the incumbent that $16.5 million was saved the taxpayers. Quite a difference, and a small percent of the total….and many should have been on Prop 8 to bring assessed value to market value, bu…t were not. Not fair, and not right. Change is "a comin'".

    I responded: Just to clarify, what exactly does Prop 8 have to do with property taxes?

    He never responded. But I'm still looking for the connection.

    • Avatar Richard Douse says:

      Prop 8 allows the Assessor's office to review those properties whose factored base values have climbed higher than fair market value. Contrary to what Mr. Largent claims, Leslie Morgan and her appraisal staff have been very busy lowering these values to current market value. As a former appraiser the Shasta County Assessor's Office I can tell you that this is a huge job. It is made much easier when the office is staffed by workers whose morale is high, as it is right now. Mr. Largent is a nice fellow, but for voters to turn out of office an elected official who is doing an exemplary job would send a message to all future office seekers that competence and dedication are no longer a reason to re-elect you. It would be a real tragedy and Shasta County property owners would be the ones to suffer. I have not worked under Leslie, but I did under the two prior Assessors. In my opinion, Leslie Morgan is doing an outstanding job. It's a much better functioning office.

    • Avatar crose says:

      Ron Largent enjoys playing fast and loose with statistical data. While he claims that only 17% of the 96,000 parcels listed on the secured assessment roll have been given a Prop 8 value reduction, he fails to mention that only 25,262 were eligible for review on January 1, 2009. The remaining properties were government owned land, restricted values under Williamson Act/Timber Protection Zones, assessed by the State on the Utility Roll, untaxed with values under $2000, and properties in the same ownership for many years and protected by Prop. 13. Of the 25,262 parcels reviewed, 16,400 were allowed a value reduction.

      Another point to consider is the fact that the property taxes that you paid last December and last month were based on your property’s value as of the January 1, 2009 lien date. The tax bill that you will be receiving on November 1, 2010 will be based on the January 1, 2010 lien date.

      Assessor-Recorder Leslie Morgan and her staff have been diligently reviewing values back to 1/1/2001 and will be enrolling reductions accordingly. Those who believe that further reductions are warranted are encouraged to contact the Assessor and request a review.

    • Avatar DonneMairi says:

      Ron Largent also used his Facebook friends on his campaign website, giving th impression that they were his supporters. This did not go over very well, especially those like Shasta County Sheriff Tom Bosenko who has signed a support form for Ron's opponent prior to being listed on Leslie Morgan's campaign site.

  5. Avatar Sara says:

    Doni,

    Great article, as usual! I love your work.

  6. Avatar Budd Hodges says:

    Doni…interesting article in deed on the explotes of our present D.A. Benito.

    Not only does the little man who won't take off his metal laden shoes at the court house, had the nerve to bring charges against a juvinile girl as contributing to the death of her friend when she overdosed on alcohol. Case dismissed.

    Check Benito's conviction rate and you'll be voting for a fine District Attorney who hired him when he was D.A. Steve Carlton.

    Carlton will clean up this department and run it right like he did before.

  7. Avatar Susan Daugherty says:

    What I find the most interesting about this article, Doni, is the way that Facebook has changed that old familiar term "friend." It appears that Missy actually thought she was among friends! I've wondered before what the point was of "friending" 100s to 1000s of people on Facebook. I have accepted friend requests simply because I had many mutual friends with that person. I have also friended people who's opinions and involvement in the arts, interest me. I think, however, it may be time to go back and clean up the ol' "Friend" list to people that are, in fact, friendly.

  8. Avatar pmarshall says:

    Oh, my gosh, there really is a lot of baloney there. But, thanks Doni, I think I will stick with the funny papers. However, one thing I am sure of, I will vote for Leslie; she is doing a great job!

  9. Avatar Joanne Lobeski Snyde says:

    In response to Susan's comment, FB has evolved so quickly that what was, for me, a safe, casual and informative site is now an illogical free-for-all. I loved being able to find out what my musician friends around the world were doing. When the Police showed up at my door after a woman I haven't seen in 10 years misinterpreted an innocent posting of mine and called the police, I canceled my account. FB is not serious business. It is no way to share news. It's not a political or religious forum.

  10. Avatar Mike says:

    Doni,

    I thought you and Missy were friends. This story doesn't appear too friendly.

    People in public office endorse and support candidates all the time. Just take a look at each candidates supporters list.

  11. Avatar Lynda Bos says:

    I want my politicians to be transparent. I want to know what makes them tick. This article makes me feel like Missy is being punished for being an open book. Whether you agree with her opinions or not, I like the fact that she is very un-politican-like.

  12. Avatar Russell K. Hunt says:

    Missy is Igo's finest councilmember.

  13. Avatar Adam Andrews says:

    I think you were quite right, Doni. This IS interesting. Because I caught your topic on FB (and missed the link) I missed the context of this. I'm still a FB Newb and occasionally miss the forest for the trees, to quote the old idiom.

    Fascinating!

    I suppose that as long as (in her case) she makes it very clear that she's FB-ing on personal time and not the people's time it's probably acceptable. I might go an extra step and say it would be wise for her to disclose upfront that she's on the election committee. Might make some folks feel a little better about it. Transparency is always the best policy in these things – although we are talking politics here, the dirtiest sport this side of mud wrestling.

    Very good topic – interesting!

    -Adam

    PS – let's do lunch again some time, would love to see you and Bruce! Keep up the good work, the site is really coming in to its own! Love it. 🙂

  14. Avatar Russell K. Hunt says:

    Okay Doni you are good person, but Missy Mc Arthur claims to live on a certain place upon the river bluffs. Right ,you do agree with that. But in campaign documents, at the Redding City Clerk's office gives a post office box . You can't be a registered voter or candidate in Redding giving a post office box. That's just perjury. The utility bills at Palides are so low they indicated non-occupany. And of course the property is owned by a bank not the well lady. The Igo property has the lady's name on it free and clear with a much larger utility bill. In other words let's not be an Obama. When political figures start using Post Office boxes rather than their real addresses there is something to hide.

    • Avatar Just Curious says:

      "IN OTHER WORDS..?" Didn't someone (not long ago) use that phrase frequently , Mr. Hunt ?

  15. Avatar kirsten says:

    ………….. and what is it, Mr. Hunt is running for this time???

  16. Avatar Karen C says:

    Mr. Hunt….how tired I am of his running for this and that and all the comments he makes. One has to only drive by Mr. Hunt's residence on Bechelli Lane or around the street that goes by his backyard to show that he is a person who does not feel any responsibility to his neighborhood. Why would anyone vote for a person who won't keep his own little part of the world in an acceptable manner in respect for the neighborhood he lives in?

  17. Avatar RwGuy says:

    I sincerely hope that Mr. Benito is voted out of office. That said, I see no reason to demonize him. I've only had two conversations with him, and short conversations at that. But from what I know of Mr. Benito, he isn't a bad man, but rather a good man who simply lost his way. That's a shame, because I think he showed promise as an ADA.

    Mr. Carlton may not be as smooth in front of a crowd as his opponent, but I think he's a competent, honorable man who just might set the D.A.'s office upon the right path again. With Benito, it often seemed that justice revolved more upon who the accused was than what he or she did. I think Carlton will do better.

  18. Avatar igorancheroes says:

    I think I'm voting for Benito. Not that I approve of everything he's done (in particular the Martinez case) but because it seems he is being railroaded by the media. I understand that he is not popular with the lawyers in town, because he has cut into their income. He has not allowed them to try whatever cases they want to. I sense that his is the same thing happening all over the U.S. – the media glitz triumphing over reason – and for that reason, I am voting for Benito.