A couple of days ago, I wrote about the manipulation of the WARN Notice website by Governor Daniels. You might ask how it is that I am accusing Daniels of being behind this move. Since the website is the Indiana government website, I am pretty sure Daniels has a hand in what goes into it and how it looks.
The following is the response I received from Gary Abell, a contact listed on the WARN Notice website.
The WARN page on DWD’s Web site is regularly updated and contains all active notices. If there is an expired WARN notice for a particular month or company that you would like to receive, please let our staff know and they will research and respond to your request. Thank you.
When I got the email, I was amused and disappointed at the same time. Notice that Mr. Abell uses two very important words: active and expired.
I couldn’t help but imagine a conversation between Daniels and the webmaster. It might have gone something like this:
WEBMASTER: “Hello, Governor Daniels?” “This is the webmaster – you know, the person who controls the information that is put on your Indiana government website?”
DANIELS: “Well, yes, this is Governor Daniels.” “What can I do for you?”
WEBMASTER: “Gosh, Governor Daniels, I was told to call you.” “I had talked to someone from your office who said you have come up with a solution to hiding correcting the information that is contained on the Department of Workforce Development WARN notice page.” “You know, those pesky figures are out there for everyone to see.” “What if people start adding those black and white numbers up and realize the workers are in worse shape than what your commercials say?”
DANIELS: “Well webmaster, I gathered my trusty advisers around me, and I think we came up with a pretty darn good idea.” “Here’s what ya do.” “First, let me make this clear – much as I would like to get rid of the information all together, I can’t just tell someone to take that damaging information off the website.”
DANIELS: “But here’s what we can do to make it really difficult for people to keep track of the notices.” “All they want to do is rain on my parade.”
WEBMASTER: “Governor Daniels, are you still there?” “You sound different, like you have a twang in your voice or something.”
DANIELS: “Dang.” “I mean pardon me.” “I forgot who I was talking to.”
DANIELS: “So here is my solution.” “I know we can’t take the information off the page, but technically we only have to list the active WARN notices.” “So, heh, heh, we’ll just remove all those dozens and dozens of expired notices.” “No point in keeping those on and reminding everybody just how many jobs have been lost.”
DANIELS: “The only notices that have to stay are active ones.” “See, if we calendar those notices that are expiring and get them off there the moment they’re done, we can hide remove them as soon as they expire.” “Great idea, huh?”
DANIELS: “I have to admit, I don’t know why we didn’t think of this before.” “I mean just think of all those notices from last year showing the thousands and thousands of jobs we lost just staring everyone in the face.”
WEBMASTER: “Boy, Governor Daniels, I can sure see how you convinced Hoosiers in 2004 to vote for you.” “Are you sure you aren’t really a magician or something?”
WEBMASTER: “I mean, what a great idea.” “Now you see ’em; now you don’t.”
DANIELS: “Well, it’s been great talkin’ to ya.” “Now where’s that cap of mine?”