Once, when I was still wet behind the ears financial blogger that was full of himself after making some money in the market I didn’t keep my eyes on the ball and literally ended up making an ass of myself in front of a very well-heeled audience. The lessons learned from that experience serve me well to this day. Amazingly the people that stuck it to me (using sand instead of vaseline) then refused to run me off instead encouraging me to take another bite at the apple. Besides learning the ropes I’ve repaid that favor few times since and though Nowdy has never acted the part of ass online or in print she had to go through the “Sop crucible” before we started doing this little project called Slabbed together. I say that not to brag nor reminisce; rather because I’ll again repay that favor. Along those lines and before we get to Rich’s story I’d like to take a second to address Mr Theriot directly.
Believe it or not I receive emails from time to time that tell me I have you read wrong. They tell me you’re not a bad fella but you are getting lots of bad advice. You came in as a caretaker but the press built you up as something more than that and that did not happen on its own. Expectations were created, by you in fact. Quickly it became apparent the reality was business as usual though I must give you guys credit for some reforms that have been enacted. But all that was overshadowed by the ongoing federal investigation into Aaron Broussard, Tim Whitmer, Tom Wilkinson and numerous others.
When it became apparent the tentacles of the scope of corruption in the Parish exceeded Whitmer and Broussard you made your first mistake by chipping in with those accused of wrongdoing. Not only that you sent an employee that was simply doing their job home because you suspected her as a source of press leaks. In your world it was not the double-dealing that was problematic, rather it was the fact people were finding out about it. Once you became an enabler you also became a target. People started digging; even worse for you our researcher Bayrat4life took an interest and the result was our post on the Dan Robin lawsuit.
You still have several weeks left in office before the special election. I’m not a communications expert but I’ll tell you what I’d tell my paying clients. Go find someone whose advice you respect, someone not currently in Parish Government or on the Parish Council and ask them what they think of the current mess. Put the ego aside and do some soul-searching about the quality of the advice you’ve received since you’ve been interim Parish President, especially since your baum is being roasted in not only the regional blogosphere but also on national venues like the Yahoo finance boards where I am still well known.
Do the right thing tomorow and kill this suit. Just in case you want to fight I promise you based on the chatter we’re hearing you may just get SLAPPED back. And then there will be no telling how many comments there will be about you and the Parish Council in the accompanying coverage. It should not be lost on anyone that Rich Rainey’s story, posted to NOLA.com at 6:54pm yesterday has vaulted to their #2 most commented story for the entire day with 117 comments as I write this post for publication. Trust me Steve, you don’t want to read what people are saying.
This brings us to Rich Rainey’s story on this whole mess and it is there we go next:
Citing defamation and “suffered embarrassment” allegedly caused by online comments posted at www.NOLA.com, Jefferson Parish interim President Steve Theriot has filed a lawsuit requesting the identities behind 11 user accounts on the website.
Nola.com did not want to address the subpoena publicly since it has evidently been served:
James O’Byrne, NOLA.com’s director of content, said, “We have received a subpoena and we will discuss it with our attorneys. We have no comment at this time.”
In addition to Theriot, the parish government is a plaintiff in the suit. Theriot said the parish is paying for it.
An examination of the screen names listed in the lawsuit shows that the comments are mostly reactions to news stories about a scandal that tore through former Parish President Aaron Broussard’s administration……..
The user accounts at NOLA.com on Tuesday appeared to show varying degrees of activity. Two appeared to have been blocked by the website, and only three mentioned Theriot by name.
Other comments on the remaining accounts seemed to focus more on Broussard, Whitmer and former Parish Attorney Tom Wilkinson than on Theriot’s administration. Whitmer resigned Jan. 4; Wilkinson resigned March 4 after Theriot placed him on administrative leave in February.
What??? Theriot goes after account information claiming he was defamed and only a few of the accounts subpoenaed even mention his name? Oh this is getting good. Are you doing this for yourself Steve are you still carrying water for Tom Wilkinson? Slabbed gets a mention at the end as we continue:
The lawsuit also references messages posted on a local web log called slabbed.org, but doesn’t specifically identify any comments, screen names or accounts used there.
“We haven’t actually been contacted by Jefferson Parish at all, as far as official channels,” said Doug Handshoe, who co-founded that site in Mississippi. After reading the lawsuit, he said: “I think it’s certainly designed to intimidate and silence online commenters.
“We don’t intend to alter what we’re doing at all,” he said.
Indeed we don’t. And for the record Mr Theriot we do not believe you wear woman’s underwear like was posted today over at Saints Report.com. 😉