You'd think that the folks who sit on the Miami city commission would have their hands full just keeping the wheels from coming off the wagon over at City Hall.
Just today we learn that, according to the Herald, "Miami employees spent tens of thousands of taxpayer dollars using city credit cards on DirecTV for a vehicle, binoculars to keep tabs on employee activities, even on a pink metallic dog collar."
It's an understatement to call Miami a Banana Republic.
Miami is so corrupt that on some days it makes the government of Somalia look positively functional by comparison.
But don't tell that to Commissioner Marc Sarnoff.
He's busy burnishing his image. Because, for a Miami politician that's a full-time job.
But let's start at the beginning.
The other day, the guy who publishes a blog called Coconut Grove Grapevine, posted an item about the ongoing debate that's taking place in the Grove surrounding a push by some to extend bar closing times from 3am to 5am.
(Commissioner Sarnoff apparently believes that if people can't get shit-faced enough by 3am, then they shouldn't be drinking in the first place.)
One of the blog's readers - calling himself "Marc Sarnoff" - posted a comment that took a shot at the real Sarnoff. The comment was clearly satirical, which should have been evident, even to someone as intellectually challenged as Sarnoff apparently is.
Dear City of Miami,What did Sarnoff do?
I fully support drinking and driving after 3am even if it claims the lives of others as long as your drunk driving does not take place in my neighborhood,
He did what any lawyer would do. He hired another lawyer, who in turn, fired off a threatening letter to the blogger.
On behalf of Commissioner Sarnoff, I demand that you remove and formally retract the defamatory and libelous statements immediately.(We here at Random Pixels have seen these kinds of mountains-out-molehill letters from attorneys.)
Apparently Sarnoff - who is an attorney but who isn't gay - and his high-priced lawyer Jay Solowsky, didn't attend class in law school on the day the First Amendment and free speech were discussed. If they had, they would have learned that satire and parody are protected forms of speech, no matter how crude and outlandish. At least that's what the Supreme Court said. I assume you've heard of them Mr. Sarnoff?
Sarnoff could have done the sensible thing and contacted the blog owner and politely asked him to remove the offending comment.
But no! He had to come on like an a**hole; getting lots of richly desrved attention in the process.
Gus Garcia-Roberts at Miami New Times is also doing his part to make sure the pot gets stirred as much as possible.
In a post today on Riptide, Garcia-Roberts invited readers to "to do your best Marc Sarnoff impression in this comments section."
Marc Sarnoff says:Way to go Marc! Now everyone knows that you're a total loser!
What are Boy-Shorts?
Posted On: Wednesday, Feb. 3 2010 @ 10:09AM