Saturday, December 17, 2005

By the People, For the People

This war against the bloggers will fail. "By the people, for the people" will hold true. We, the people, will ultimately decide on constitutional rights regarding all matters in this, the greatest country on God's earth. They will throw obstacles in our path, and cause delays and obstructions, but these actions will not come without a price to pay. The people will have their way, and good will ultimately win out over evil! Let them have their say, and throw their rocks. Nothing is going to stop change, as change is the most consistent element of life. MSM will remain a force in the world, but bloggers will also become a very powerful force and much good will come from this change.

-- Keemo

I think this quote rings true for all of us in the Blogosphere trying to reveal the bloat in educational bureaucracy and the current debate over whether bloggers are considered legitimate journalists and, as such, afford equal protection under the Declaration of Rights pursuant to the California Constitution. That said, here's my recent response to Robert Sammis' email regarding why he failed to once again provide public records belonging to Santa Monica College.

-- Des Manttari,
Phoenix Genesis

(c) 2005: Phoenix Genesis/MBS LP


From : Phoenix Genesis
Sent : Saturday, December 17, 2005 1:10 AM
To :

Subject : RE: You're failure to comply with the CPRA

Dear Mr. Sammis,

If it is not one excuse, it's another, why Santa Monica Community College District is failing to comply with the California Public Records Act.

When I first orally sought the eCollege Master Service and License Agreement in June, I was told by Judy Fritz and Pat Green that it was "not a good time." I was further told, along with my witness, by SMC staff member Stu Seldon, that there were "consequences for coming back to school" and that I "didn't understand how things are run around here," or words to that effect.

Okay, so it's six months later, and I still haven't received this eCollege document, despite numerous written requests, a lawsuit, and promises by you and eCollege to provide it. I have waited patiently for months on end for my written requests for numerous documents, despite my busy schedule. Rather than get documents or inspection, I have gotten repeated arrest attempts and fabricated statements against me and retaliatory disciplinary tactics by your campus disciplinarian, Judith Penchansky, and by your attorney to file charges with the district attorney. I have been denied computer lab privileges to work on my legitimate AET course to further harass me. I can't even count the times I have written letters or emails reminding you and other SMC employees of the specific provisions of the CPRA or exactly what I requested.

You have not been courteous to me or my attorneys regarding our busy schedules. On Nov. 29, 2005, you emailed me that you would address my issues. That never happened. I emailed you again, and you emailed me on Dec. 5, 2005 that you would arrange a time later that week to complete the District's response. I waited and that never happened. I emailed you again and then, on Dec. 13th, you informed me that you would EMAIL ME with what you thought I needed and set a date for compliance, which was two days after my final cutoff. Since when have I not shown up trying to resolve this issue? I have always shown up. Why should I have emailed you when you promised once again to email me? This makes no sense. As to your contention that you were too busy to wait around for me, you left an hour BEFORE the time YOU set up for me to come into your office. I came to meet you, on your terms, pursuant to your request. You could have emailed me prior to you leaving, which you did not. I checked me email up until 1 p.m. today before I left and I waited until 4:30 p.m.

Additionally, you are not the only person who works for SMCCD who has access to public records in their custody and control. Dean Muller did not provide me with inspection or production, even though this third written request was directed to her. I have asked her repeatedly to comply, as I did Julie Yarrish and Pat Green as well as other employees such as President Thomas Donner and his assistants in his office. I have asked Judy Fritz to comply on more than one occasion. My attorneys have written and spoke with your attorney, Joshua Morrison, on numerous occasions as well. All, unfortunately, to no avail.

You knew the eCollege contract was long overdue, as were the Animatics and Brooks/Flemming contracts and well as all the grants for which SMCCD provided the wrong years. You knew we were waiting for many, many documents. Not even a single one was forthcoming, despite your promises. Most of the documents we have received to date have simply been non-responsive to our requests. You have provided duplicates of large documents to make it appear like we were getting a lot of information when you were merely doing a document dump on us.

Other documents, which you knew existed, SMCCD said did not exist or they actually took the additional step to withhold disclosure such as hiding documents, such as the two History of Animation websites. Then, a month after your employees stated that no such documents existed, lo and behold, they magically appeared back at Santa Monica College where I first saw them.

Additionally, documents have been tampered with such as my webpage where I was listed as a teaching assistant as well as numerous eCollege internal online courses to erase crucial information in which I was a teaching assistant. Furthermore, SMC removed the pirated website they stole from my server and then, a month later, after your attorney stated in writing that it would not be used by the District, it magically appeared again.

No one at SMCCD has been helpful in my requests for public records. No one has made a sincere attempt to provide documents. No one has complied with the law that states that inspection should occur during normal business hours. For example, Lin D. Caldwell, by and through Letti Kilian and Judy Fritz, called the SMC campus police on me and two disabled students after lying to us and instructing us to wait for Ms. Caldwell's return from lunch. At that time, Officer Willie Malone told us that SMC did NOT intend to comply with the law. He also told us that Ms. Caldwell would call us for an appointment. That was in August 2005. Instead of an appointment, I was served with a handful of false statements against me by Judith Penchansky, all of which were retaliatory and well documented as to their falsity.

Additionally, this week, Professor Jim Keeshen emailed me stating that SMC is refusing to allow him to teach the History of Animation course unless I sign a statement turning over all my rights and work to SMC as well as signing something stating I will not sue the school. Is this compliance with the CPRA or merely blackmail once again against Prof. Keeshen and extortion against me at the hands of the District? Prof. Keeshen taught the course long before he met me, so I have absolutely nothing to do with his teaching it now. If Dean Muller wishes to harass him for whatever reason, I would appreciate not being sucked into this drama. As it is, Prof. Keeshen refused to attend the meeting with Judith Penchansky and my attorney Ed Lee, regarding the false statement he claims he was blackmailed to write against me, and as such, the disciplinary hold, which was wrongfully placed on my enrollment, has been removed.

To add fuel to the fire, to use Prof. Keeshen's own words, you falsely misrepresented to him, as I stated in a past email, that I had told you he had computers belonging to the school, knowing this statement was false. You are additionally withholding his mandatory sabbatical report we have requested under the CPRA, stating that it was never filed when he alleges that he did in fact file it. SMCCD has again tampered with public records by providing me with an alleged Animatics contract by Prof. Keeshen in which his name was forged to this document. As Prof. Keeshen has indicated to me orally and in writing, he is being harassed at SMC and being used as the "sacrificial lamb."

Obviously, this is being done to force him to pressure me to abandon my case. However, this is not going to help SMCCD, but hurt them in the long run. If as much energy were directed with complying with the CPRA as it has been with harassing Prof. Keeshen, myself, and other students who have sought public records with me, we wouldn't be in the position we are now in with seeking Court intervention.

So, save your excuses for the judge in Court this week. As I indicated in my previous email to you, I have submitted the list of outstanding documents for all five of our requests. I will amend the first two this weekend. Feel free to messenger any outstanding public records to my attorneys. Otherwise, be prepared to bring them to court with you. I do not need broken promises of random and sparse inspection; I need a daily inspection during normal business hours as required by law. I have waited, as I have stated, for six months. I shall wait no more.

Very Truly Yours,
Des Manttari /s/


Sent : Friday, December 16, 2005 8:07 PM
To : "Phoenix Genesis"
Subject : RE: You're failure to comply with the CPRA

I received no response from you to my email, thus, I had no idea whether you were in fact showing up on Friday. I am too busy to simply wait for you and so is my staff. The common courtesy would be for you to confirm that you would be availing yourself of the time that I set aside for you. I am available Tuesday afternoon any time after 2:00. If you wish to inspect documents, please confirn vial email.

Robert Sammis

Feel free to link or print this; just include the SAVE SMC URL:

Technorati Tags:
, , , , , , , , , , ,
, , , , , , ,


Post a Comment

<< Home