I’ve been debating between a long version and a short version, but I think this is going to be really long. I’ve fairly warned you.
Kevin Fischer is a community blogger on FranklinNOW . He’s also a state aide to Senator Mary Lazich, (R-New Berlin). Lazich also blogs on that and all of the sites in areas she represents. Fischer fills in for talk radio, does a tv thing, is kind of a one man show.
He also has an incredibly short temper. The lefties have pretty much labeled him a right-wing nutcase. The far right falls all over him. The rest of us look around quizzically waiting for some kind of real content. The one guarantee is that he’ll spew all over someone with as much regularity as Ol’ Faithful.
His favorite target for months was another young blogger at FranklinNOW. Greg Kowalksi (who has this blog and this one, too) and I disagree more often than not, but he’s engaged and capable and very willing to learn. I started to step in when comments were going south. Granted I baited, but it was pretty easy to draw Fischer out.
When Fischer’s logic fails he starts with the name calling. Kowalski was labeled “Pillsbury doughboy,” “Cheesecake breath,” and “cry-baby” in addition to “irrelevant” since he was a college student without a full time job. Kowalksi just happens to be an “irrelevant” constituent of Fischer’s boss, State Senator Mary Lazich. (Others are watching this, too. See Kowalski’s line up.)
Things calmed down for a little while, but then they’d flare up again. It wouldn’t take much. Fischer has buddies that blog with him. Together the foursome are pretty much all the commenting that takes place. Within a week of my hanging out at FranklinNOW I noticed something unusual about one of the blogger’s work. I e-mailed my suspicion to Kowalski who researched and found the original site from which this other guy had been lifting content. I went on later that evening and found a few others.
The plagiarist was off the blog in a couple of days.
Oh, my, did things tumble after that. Square one, round two. A sentence would send this group through the stratosphere. It happened again a few days ago. While I was in Arizona (how come mid-priced hotels have free WiFi but the expensive ones charge you for it?) I checked in and found all hell had broken loose. Fischer had posted really horrid things about me. It was what I’d been waiting for all along. I e-mailed the NOW editor to tell him I’d be pursuing the matter. I crafted this request to Senator Mary Lazich on the 20th:
Since you either can’t or won’t keep a leash on your staff, I’ll have to pursue my options with this one.
This is an open records request to review employment information regarding staff member Kevin Fischer. In particular, I want to find the length of employment by your office, his job description, and his salary as paid by the State of Wisconsin.
I also request to review the internet use information from his work computer for the last month, including sites visited and times used. I plan to make a connection from his postings to your office.
Thank you for your prompt attention to this request. Please let me know when this information is available. Please note I have not asked to have copies made or any costs incurred, only to review the information. Please contact me when it becomes available and I will make a trip to Madison to review it.
If you are not responsible for these records as Mr. Fischer’s employer, please let me know and I will make my request through the State of Wisconsin.
(Personal info deleted, although I know it’s plastered everywhere!)
—-Sidebar: Always ask to REVIEW not HAVE information. They can’t charge you that way!—-
Wednesday Sen. Lazich called. She explained she was “really busy” and didn’t know when she could get to my request. She said the law allowed a “reasonable time.” True, I replied, and the courts have pretty much ruled 10 working days to be reasonable. I followed up with this:
Thank you for you call, Sen. Lazich. As I mentioned, I believe that Mr. Fischer’s behavior is a direct reflection on your office. I made the open records request so that I can show that connection more clearly to the voting public. I looked it up and the state courts have ruled that 10 business days is considered a “reasonable time” for you to provide the information I requested on January 20th.
Here are the comments that concerned me from Mr. Fischer’s blog. I made one statement and the Fischer comments that followed:
(Deleted, you really don’t want to read this. It’s off the site link above, too.)
So tick, tock. It’s wait-and-see time. I’ll drive to Madtown and visit the oldest when the records are ready to review.
My questions are many as I walk into this issue. First, there’s morbid curiosity… how much does he make and how long has he worked for her? Next, does he blog from the State facilities? Lazich told me that Fischer writes a lot of the stuff on her blog. I know there will be links there. What about his personal blog? Or is it his personal blog…
You see, on the description of Fischer is this statement – “Kevin, who is a legislative aide to state Sen. Mary Lazich (R-New Berlin),…” At what point are you blogging for your own pleasure vs. blogging to keep your boss elected? I daresay there might be a reversed effect in this situation, though.
So that’s it. I’m opening a can of worms, but after what City of Brookfield Mayor Jeff Speaker did to me during the last mayoral campaign, I’m tough and ready. I’ve said it before, but once you start working from purity of spirit, (free from agendas, without too much animosity) things always seem to fall into place.
One other thing I don’t think Ms. Lazich knows…she might want to check my track record on men that try to whip up on me. It’s pretty darn good if I have to say so myself. I’ll e-mail you the details if you don’t already know.