Blogger Takedown in the OC

With the last election behind us, and the great results for local Democrats, a new scandal is brewing. This doesn’t involve a politician, this doesn’t involve a lobbyist, this doesn’t involve the registrar of voters or a letter, this involves a blogger.

Yup, a blogger. I never thought the day would come where the Register would run an article on a blogger and an investigation into his writings. The ramifications of this investigation run far beyond one local political blogger, this could cause a bigger problem for all political bloggers when a local politician can’t take the heat of his/her own past.

Chris Prevett has been one of the fellow bloggers on The Liberal OC (a site which even gave me a honorary membership card), a site that played a pivotal roll in the last election. For once Democrats were on the offensive and The Liberal OC paved the way with breaking news, investigations, and commentary on liberal politics in Orange County. But some in this county are afraid that too much power was gained by local Democrats, that too much power was wielded by the "civilian" media. A few weeks before the election, the County launch an investigation in to Chris’ blogging activity and his allegeded use of county resources to do so. 

The "Orange Curtain" was breached and the powers to be were not happy.

The wielders of the new "Political Weapon," as Norberto calls it in the Register article, succeeded and ruffled some feathers. This weapon breached the Orange Curtain, it fueled the controversy over the Letter Scandal in the race Between Loretta and Tan, it brought positive press coverage for the Democrats and portrayed the OC Republicans as belonging in the same group as their corrupt national brethren.

And for all of this, the one blogger that was within reach by the "powers to be" was Chris.

More after the jump…

Chris didn’t hide behind a handle (like Jubal on OC Blog, before Jubal let others know he was Matt Cunningham). He posted under his real name, like myself and other local bloggers who stand by what they write. This investigation even has local Republican bloggers split on this. Art Pedroza of O-Juice has come out in support of Chris, while John Fleischman of The FlashReport attacked Chris as being "Dumb." Matt Cunningham has expressed some concern into the investigation as his very livelihood (and the very existence of Red County’s OC Blog) are threatened. Matt sees the importance of blogging and how it allows for the accountability of government.

The Electronic Frontier Foundation is a group that I support. Their efforts help protect bloggers and make sure that our free speech rights in this new digital era are protected. Recent legal cases from the California State Supreme Court, among them being Barrett v. Rosenthal, have given additional protection to bloggers in the State of California.

What legal issues or other ramifications are still yet to be seen as this issue is still under investigation by the County. The local blogosphere will no doubt keep watch on this issue. The blogs worked in the OC in the last election, we ushered in a new wave of politics which is causing some local politicians to cram it back behind the proverbial red metal Orange Curtain that once surrounded this county, little rays of blue are breaking through, it’s only a matter of time before the "Curtain" comes crashing down.


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