Thursday, June 4, 2009

Q the Eye

Editor's Note: Your LakeCountyEye, keeper of the infallible magic crystal ball, understands that inexhaustible knowledge comes only at a price of great responsibility. It is in this spirit that your LakeCountyEye inaugurates a new feature called Q the Eye. The floor is open to your questions, pragmatic or profound, about Lake County politics.

Dear LakeCountyEye,

Despite expecting re-election to another 4-year term, I was recently defeated at the polls. Since this has never happened to me before, what is the protocol for transitioning my office over to my opponent?

Aint Misbehavin' in Avon
Dear Aint,

Your LakeCountyEye has gotten a lot of questions like this one, especially since the April election.

First impressions are important and a defeated official needs to leave a sanitized office when handing over the keys to a political opponent. Nothing says amateur-hour like an office littered with expense receipts from nearby casinos and official contracts signed on the back of cocktail napkins.

To that end, your LakeCountyEye recommends a good paper shredder. Beware of cheap home-use units. It is possible to reassemble shredded documents, particularly when an ambitious assistant AG is on the case. Your LakeCountyEye recommends a DIN/Level 6 industrial shredder for this purpose.

Of course even when the incriminating documents have been reduced to hanging-chads, you'll still need to dispose of the evidence. Don't do what the Daily Herald reports that one official did and deposit the remains in the recycle bin behind your own office. That may be the environmentally sensitive thing to do, but it's an open invitation for your opponent to make that call to the State's Attorney. Your LakeCountyEye recommends, at a minimum, burying the confetti in a 7-Eleven dumpster, ideally one located in a different state.

Or if you have a creative flair, boil the paper into paste -- papier-mâché is an excellent construction material. That re-election campaign float will be the talk of next year's 4th of July parade.

Now that the office is scrubbed clean, don't think you can say goodbye to all those fond late-night memories quite yet. What about those computers you're leaving behind? No one who boots up a new computer expects find a hard-drive maxed-out with e-mail messages from your political donors. Your computer is like the fossil record of all those (now long forgotten) years in office. Be sure to delete all of those space-consuming budget expense spreadsheets before you leave.

But be careful, even deleted files can be recovered with the help of any 10-year-old kid with an mp3 player. You may want to do what one official, according to the Daily Herald, did -- reformat all the hard drives before vacating the premises.

Of course, erased files can even be recovered from reformatted drives. Sure, there are commercial products like Norton Wipe that claim to remove all those files forever, but for your LakeCountyEye's money nothing does the job better than the F150. What you need to do is wheel all those overloaded PCs out to the office parking lot. (Leave the monitors and keyboards inside.) Borrow your neighbor's Ford F150 4x4 -- tough, dependable and American made -- and pop the clutch over those computers 3 or 4 times. For best results, perform after midnight. If your opponent questions the condition of the office equipment, say they fell off a truck.

Well, there you have it, your office is now prepped & ready for the new regime. You can breathe easy for the next 4 years that you did the right thing by your opponent. While masterminding your re-election.

If you are an elected official, or a previously elected official, or just a private citizen under indictment, send your political questions to Q the Eye c/o ...


Anonymous said...

Don't forget approving an unnecessary trip to a southern state for a recently defeated official. It will benefit that departing official greatly.

Anonymous said...

OMG.....what a great way to start the day. I am ROFLMAO.

Old Oak said...

This is a funny post, 'Eye!'

Mike Hewitt discovered the same sort of stuff when he walked into the Waukegan Township Highway office. Oops! Pretty silly to leave your next career move all over the place when it involves running for another office!

My recommendation is a restaurant's dumpster. Preferably Chinese or bar-b-que; the smellier and gooeyer the better.

Certainly not a police department's dumpster that's under video surveillance!