Tuesday, April 27, 2010

High Priests' 'New Clothes' Continue to Fade

"House Address" public hearings before the NH General Court's Joint Committee on Address, "for the removal of Philip Cross, marital master in the judicial branch family division in the Derry District Court, from his said office," morning session, 4/26/2010.

This is the first result -- the first officially documented "work product" fallout -- of the (unofficial, of course) "Legislators' Redress of Grievance Caucus'" (not a "committee," dammit!) "listening sessions" that House leadership has so desperately wanted to avoid that it has denied your representatives investigative accommodations within State office space. Find more on this long strange trip here.

Rep. Paul Ingbretson was a guest (again) on 'Capitol Access' (another video project involving your humble chronicler) just last week, discussing this very topic.

But first, the "Curious Timing Award" goes to... The (Merrimack County?) Sheriff's Department, who shows up to serve an arrest warrant on the primary witness, David Johnson -- a long-time, easy to find community member, and rather unlikely flight risk given the potential to further jeopardize contact with his daughter -- before his scheduled testimony in front of the legislative branch against the judicial branch. Hmm...

Cooler heads eventually prevail. Props to the NH State Police on State House duty who allegedly took some issue with the intended process. This is the same State Police detail that didn't overreact at the HCR6 brouhaha, and more recently have left State House 420 celebrants alone twice now...

Guest videographer, my own Rep. Gary Hopper delivers the money shot. Fascinating how law enforcement's attitude of blanket authority changes so quickly with as simple (and so minimally assured) a challenge as, essentially, "what's the law you're citing...?" Straight from "you don't have my permission" (well, you weren't asked for it) to "I'd appreciate it if you didn't" (y'know, you being government functionaries subject to RSA 91-A's exception to RSA 570-A, an' all -- not to mention your utter lack of anything remotely approximating a "reasonable expectation of privacy" in this pubic building WHILE WORKING FOR ME -- I'm infinitely more concerned with David's wishes than your own) just that quick. 'Course, "I'm a state Representative, and I am, too" doesn't hurt, either...

Lastly, I just gotta say, it never fails to make me feel just a little bit more secure in my person, papers and effects when I observe government agencies earnestly occupying themselves with opposing each other rather than cooperating in opposing me...

Part 1

Part 2


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