Joseph Zorzin redoak at forestmeister.com
Wed Dec 17 15:49:55 EST 1997

Bill MacDonald wrote:
> Joseph Zorzin <redoak at forestmeister.com> wrote in article
> <3495D76A.361F at forestmeister.com>...
> > I hereby declare to the universe that the following are wimps for never
> > showing their intellects in this forum-
> >
> > The 50 state Chief Honcho Foresters
> > The hundreds of state service foresters.
> > The Big Whigs from the USFS.
> You might have a look at the following site
> http://www.afseee.org/
> and read the article entitled "Forest Service fires employee for using the
> internet".  Could this be one reason why not many USFS employees are
> posting to this group?

Well, what he did, he did on "company time" and without authorization.
Perhaps the USFS could have an official spokesperson who could be
available for factual information; not for arguing politics. Hey, people
answer the phone to answer questions don't they? They could be on the
net too. Even if it were on their own official web pages- which now can
have their own bulletin boards. I CERTAINLY don't expect them to argue
the politics of forestry. But being mute is not the answer either- there
should be more official use of the net- TO PROVIDE INFO TO THE PUBLIC-
who they work for.

> Maybe you should target the head honcho's as you call them.  In this case
> the phone and fax numbers are given on the above site.
> In the UK, government employees in the "politically restricted" class are
> not allowed to discuss in public anything related to the department in
> which they work and are discouraged from getting involved in controversy of
> any kind.  This is so that they can be seen as neutral and independent.
> Their job is to serve which ever government is in power.

In America, bureaucrats don't serve the government, they serve the
people, and not taking advantage of the net is idiotic. They also
probably didn't put telephones in their offices for many years with the
same excuses. Responsiveness and accountibility by businesses and
governments is the sign of modernity. Not dreaming up excuses to not
participate. And ultimately, the problem lies with the politicans; they
set policy.

At least at the federal level, most American congressmen and senators
have email addresses available to everyone. That's a start. In my state
of Mass. I can't find any email addresses for my state reps and state
senators- who are backward on this subject- and the bureaucracies fall
right into line.

> What they can do and I suspect many in the US do also is to lurk on the
> fringes of newsgroups like this.  That way they can follow the debates,
> keep up to date and avoid getting fired!!!

That's gutless. We have a constitution which you in the UK don't have.
They have a right to talk here; although it is reasonable to expect that
they would talk in a discreet manner; not insulting their bosses of
course- but at least they'd be available in case someone would like to
know more about their area of expertise. This is not the Third Reich or
Soviet East Europe.

Those who are afraid of exersising their rights soon find they don't
have them anymore.

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