This is only a Preview!

You must Publish this diary to make this visible to the public,
or click 'Edit Diary' to make further changes first.

Posting a Diary Entry

Daily Kos welcomes blog articles from readers, known as diaries. The Intro section to a diary should be about three paragraphs long, and is required. The body section is optional, as is the poll, which can have 1 to 15 choices. Descriptive tags are also required to help others find your diary by subject; please don't use "cute" tags.

When you're ready, scroll down below the tags and click Save & Preview. You can edit your diary after it's published by clicking Edit Diary. Polls cannot be edited once they are published.

If this is your first time creating a Diary since the Ajax upgrade, before you enter any text below, please press Ctrl-F5 and then hold down the Shift Key and press your browser's Reload button to refresh its cache with the new script files.


  1. One diary daily maximum.
  2. Substantive diaries only. If you don't have at least three solid, original paragraphs, you should probably post a comment in an Open Thread.
  3. No repetitive diaries. Take a moment to ensure your topic hasn't been blogged (you can search for Stories and Diaries that already cover this topic), though fresh original analysis is always welcome.
  4. Use the "Body" textbox if your diary entry is longer than three paragraphs.
  5. Any images in your posts must be hosted by an approved image hosting service (one of: imageshack.us, photobucket.com, flickr.com, smugmug.com, allyoucanupload.com, picturetrail.com, mac.com, webshots.com, editgrid.com).
  6. Copying and pasting entire copyrighted works is prohibited. If you do quote something, keep it brief, always provide a link to the original source, and use the <blockquote> tags to clearly identify the quoted material. Violating this rule is grounds for immediate banning.
  7. Be civil. Do not "call out" other users by name in diary titles. Do not use profanity in diary titles. Don't write diaries whose main purpose is to deliberately inflame.
For the complete list of DailyKos diary guidelines, please click here.

Please begin with an informative title:

You probably haven't heard of Mr. Fuddlesticks.  S/he is a police officer in a war of attrition where all of the tactics of government overreach, corruption, and obscuration are being employed to violate your rights.  

His/her supporters are a small group, but a dedicated one; to smell the coffee on Mr. Fuddlesticks is to see, in fine detail, exactly how they're screwing us.  


You must enter an Intro for your Diary Entry between 300 and 1150 characters long (that's approximately 50-175 words without any html or formatting markup).

Mr. Fuddlesticks, First Amendment Martyr
It's hard to tell so twisted a tale in brief.  I'll do my best.  The implications for you, the citizen, will be italicized below.

Mr. Fuddlesticks was the name used by a Renton, Washington police officer who made some cartoons and put them on YouTube.  The cartoons were a sort of digital venting about department mismanagement including criminal behavior by police, brutality, cronyism in promotion and discipline, obstructionism, wasting tax money on pet projects, sexual misconduct and more.  No names were named in these cartoons.  One tidbit that came out of all this was the former chief of police, Garry Anderson, throwing a suspect off a bridge -- with no repercussions of any kind.

The department recognized its dirty laundry and came after Mr. Fuddlesticks full force, trumping up a charge of cyberstalking a police department in order to smoke out the cartoonist.  Exculpatory information was excluded from the warrant.  Details were shoehorned to fit the statute.  When the first prosecutor declined to proceed, they found another.

When a local government wants to shut you up, they know exactly how to move you through the criminal justice system in violation of your First and Fourth Amendment rights.

While seeking a warrant to prosecute the cartoonist, the City engaged in what has been called "the largest shredding party in Renton history," destroying the same public records it was citing in the warrant as relevant to the prosecution.  Dozens of confirmed, documented cases of police misconduct were permanently destroyed in violation of the law.

Due to the excellent work of Chris Halsne (mostly) this case garnered some national attention.  In general, however, our media fails miserably at informing us.  This is not a victimless crime.

The charges were dropped when it was expedient to do so, due to public awareness and the legal absurdity of the ploy.  Besides, they'd gotten one person to come forward and take limited responsibility, and they punished him severely.

The threat of criminal prosecution can be used to shut you up, and removed when expedient, i.e., dangled over your head like the sword of Damocles.  If they can do it to an insider who knows the system, the tactics, and the individuals involved, what chance do you, the citizen have?

Mr. Fuddlesticks made enough noise to back them off to some degree.  But in so doing, s/he opened up Pandora's box.  His/her supporters have established an open line of communication, a message board where IP addresses are not captured, and have begun requesting public records.

From Fuddlesticks.com:

There are emails from the Chief of Police advising EVERY EMPLOYEE to clean out their personnel files because of PUBLIC RECORDS REQUEST.

At the same time these emails are being sent by the Chief of Police, he orders that internal investigation files be shredded.   Then, to top it off, records are withheld and others redacted beyond any recognition with the thinnest of exemptions applied.   For those records that cannot be withheld forever, they are withheld for years with the excuse of needing to be reviewed for exemptions that will take more than a year.   Even a single cell phone bill has been given an estimate of 12 months to produce.

The only way we know whether or not the City has released the information it is LEGALLY OBLIGATED to produce, is that we have a secured line of communication for people inside the City to compare notes without the City's knowledge.  This is, in and of itself, a revolutionary idea.  

The government has very well engineered the silence of knowledgeable insiders, both amongst themselves and with the public.  The rights of police officers are destroyed as a precursor to destroying the rights of the citizens.

The government is required to release public records on demand.  However, unless you already know what they have, and can prove it, you'll get what they give you, when they give it to you.  If, as in the case of Mr. Fuddlesticks, they choose not to do so timely (or at all) you can try and get them to prosecute themselves.

Support Mr. Fuddlesticks while you still can.

Renton received public records
Xavier's archive on Fuddlesticks

Extended (Optional)

Your Email has been sent.