Facebookin’ for DA

by Tim Stelloh, March 10, 2010

The Godzilla of social networking sites is apparently a prerequisite for Mendo's DA candidates. Much of the stuff posted on these pages is what you'd expect: boilerplate self-promotion. But there's the occasional surprise that makes it all worth it, so we decided to do a quick survey of this new electro-landscape to see how Mendo's legal professionals are holding up...

Jill Ravitch

Okay, so Mendo's top prosecutor is running in Sonoma County. But Ravitch's page is unrivaled in its comprehensiveness, with a boatload of oogling fans, constant updates, political wrangling and more photos than those fans could possibly want. And really--who could resist a glimpse into the techno world of this steely-eyed enforcer?

Here's what we learned:

*Jill Ravitch can smile. Really. Not that she's beaming or anything in her profile photo--it's a little more awkward than that, like she just returned from the Botox doc. Ditto with the other campaign photo-op images--like this one, where those two dudes look like they've been waiting since 2006 for a gander at Jill's pantsuit and Ravitch looks like she'd rather be chowin' on some dungeness.

*Jill Ravitch uses exclamation points--as in this response to a supporter eager for some signage: "Thanks for the support. I'll let you know when the lawn signs arrive!" Who woulda' thought? I mean, in the electro-world, this is the punctuation of choice among soccer moms and conspiracy theory kooks--neither of which she appears to be. So kudos, Jill, for giving this expression of enthusiasm and emotion a whirl.

*Jill Ravitch says things like "it's the positive energy" that makes this campaign work. Really? It's the positive energy? Sheesh. You'd think she'd gone Mendo native or something.

Meredith Lintott

If Ravitch is trying to add some cuddles to her public persona, Mendo's lawyer-in-charge is goin' terminator. The Photo is, of course, the first thing you notice about Lintott's profile--so let me simply quote what we've already noted about her Who's-Your-Daddy image in these pages: "Here's Mrs. Lintott trying to look much fiercer than she is, trying to convey to the cringing tea bag vote she hopes to lure behind her electoral skirts, 'Just see if I won’t throw these punks under the jail.' Mrs. Lintott is a much more benign personality than she’s attempting to bring off here with this taut-jawed, narrow-eyed portrait, a nice lady who happens to find herself responsible for law and order in a remote corner of the crumbling, lawless empire America has become."

Thankfully, we get more than The Photo, more than The Slogan ("Promises Kept") and more than a recitation of accomplishments.

We get faves.

For instance:

Among Lintott's favorite musicians is Jack Johnson. As a self-identified music snob, I find this a little hard to swallow--it's like saying Friends is your favorite TV show. Or jicima is your favorite veggie. But hey, I'm just a snob, and at least she's like, connecting with the kids. But then there's this gem: One of Lintott's favorite movies is On the Waterfront--the Brando classic about a non-conformist among union thugs (which was directed by famed filmmaker and Commie informer Elia Kazan, and was based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning series about crime and corruption on New York City's waterfront).  Aside from platitudes about corruption and lawlessness, there's not much here to extrapolate that might inform how Lintott runs the DA's office. But it's nice to know she likes at least one good movie.

Matt Finnegan

Finnegan's Facebook page is bare-bones, to the point--no endless photo galleries, no silly favorites, an update every now and then, a bio that tells us who the guy is, a staged-looking photo reminiscent of the prez posing for a bill-signing.

If I were running for DA--and felt compelled to get on the FB train--this is what my profile would look like, mostly because I loathe social networking sites generally and Facebook specifically.

David Eyster

After Ravtich, Eyster appears to be Mendo's most robust electro-social networker. I don't know if that bodes well for his possible future gig, but he's all over the place--responding to questions about how he'd handle particular cases, posting links to stories, uploading photos of all manner of accolade and diploma, including this:

In achieving the rank of Eagle Scout in his youth, David Eyster learned the importance of personal responsibility. Taking responsibility for one's actions is a hallmark of a good leader.

Moreover, those who have been raised and trained in the scouting traditions understand that scouts give importance to the development of the following character traits: trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful, thrifty, brave, clean and reverent. These are character traits that David Eyster has developed and will bring to work every day as Mendocino County's next District Attorney.

Thank God. We might finally get someone in the DA's office who's clean, obedient and cheerful.

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