I have a feeling this is going to be the start of a very entertaining saga at the very least, so pay attention, folks. This story starts with a parade in Telluride, Colorado, in which some local peace-niks put a float in the parade demonstrating their distaste for war, and ends with a friend of mine (a Levite Jew), and myself (a software executive 5000 miles away) supposedly being placed on a terrorist watch-list.
I’ve updated the story’s format to make it a bit more readable, and I’m changing the format of the site a bit for the same reason, but the same essential content is here, and nothing has been edited or changed from it’s original format. If you would like to see original copies of all emails, I will send them to you upon request.
Why am I putting this story out there so plainly? Well, part of it is revenge, part of it is preventative medicine, part of it is fighting fire with fire, and part of it is a legitimate fear I have of this thing getting stupid and me being stuck with a black mark on my record that’ll prevent me from having opportunities I’m otherwise qualified for in my future. I want to be first to market with this story.
I realize that right now, other than this news story, my front page has an amazing right tilt at the moment. For you newcomers to my site, I yo-yo back and forth on the political spectrum, and I can’t really classify myself as conservative or liberal… I’m essentially for whatever platform ends classism and elitism in America, and right now neither big ticket is doing that in this year’s election, so this year I’ve been playing the same roles the Dwarves from the Last Battle (by C.S. Lewis) did in that wonderful Chronicle of Narnia — I’m taking pot shots at both sides.
But basically, for those of you following my site and aren’t here because of an email I sent you, I’ve sent out an email to about 15 major leftist blogs, because I want this story to get out and be followed as it progresses. I didn’t bother sending this out to right-wing blogs, not because I don’t think they’d care, but I don’t want them getting the wrong idea … I’m not attacking their president or their stance on the war, and I’m not trying to start fights at this point. I’m trying to get the word out about Albert Heirich and his campaign to stamp out free speech in Telluride Colorado.
I know many of the right wing people would under ordinary circumstances be very Voltarian about this, but this is not normal circumstances, this is an election year, and one of the most controversial in recent memory .. so better to give the story to those who would get the most milage out of it. Sorry, Republicans. I promise, next big drama thing that hits my life that you can use, I’ll send it your way
Enough introduction. Let’s get on with the story.
The Telluride Daily Planet articles
This whole thing started, subsequent to the parade, with some letters to the editor in the Telluride Daily Planet. If you go there right now, you can still find the articles, but they won’t be there much longer, as it looks like their archives will only go back a matter of a few days or a week or so.
These were written before I was aware anything was going on, but since I’m organising this chronologically, I’m putting them in now.
Congratulations and thank you to the volunteers who helped put on a fantastic 4th of July parade. It was respectful, patriotic and just plain fun – until they let the Peace Monkeys out.
The disgusting manner in which these cowards berated the soldiers who served in Iraq (including my sister, See-Saw) while hiding behind masks is a shameful mark on our community and the local peace movement (the individuals are all involved in the local peace groups). Note: the masks did not keep me, or anyone else, from discovering your true identity.
An acquaintance of these buffoons attempted to excuse the childish behavior as “frustration over the war.” Give me a break. These hate-filled peace monkeys are just plain ignorant and have proven what I have been saying along – that the peace movement here in Telluride is insincere, a hip fad and frankly, an obscene joke.
So if you still think they want true peace (instead of using the war to open pseudo-hip little coffee shops and boutiques catering to the stupid), then your hatred for Bush has blinded you also.
I’ll close now as I’ve already spent more ink than these losers deserve.
The gloves are off.
He may have made some valid points if he had not closed his letter with “the gloves are off” and continued your feeble attempts to make my life a living hell, as well as the “peace monkies” of Telluride.
One of Al Heirich’s champions is, no doubt, Rush Limbaugh. Rush has a long long history of “demonstrating absurdity by being absurd.” If you can’t take satire, parody, and absurdity for what it is, and actually examine issue and take note, then you are truly lost as a human being. It is when we close our minds off that we stop growing as people.
Al has demonstrated that he isn’t even willing to consider that there might be another side to this, discounting the other side as childish and cowardly.
I say to Albert: You sir, are the coward. You come and attack me without leaving a name behind, and then having me attacked by your dogs over at Owl Investigations.
I now reprint Matthew Finkelstein’s response to you from the Telluride Daily Planet:
So, it appears that someone has taken offense to the monkey manifesto. This is actually to be expected. We here at monkey headquarters are also offended by simians, so, in truth, we share some common ground. Although, to make things clear, we do not feel that the human lives being expended in the Iraqi occupation in any way represents the view of the Monkey Power advocacy group. In fact, by neglecting to address this during the parade, we have indeed invited criticism from those who might read as much into our monkey behaviors.
To clarify, the Monkey Power group advocates the enslavement of simians to fulfill duties of humans. However, there are some shortcomings in this principle. For instance: “Trepol gomer son mopper tustwo wjeff right nbo ew sjlsaj monkey food banana please now.”
What you have just read was indeed an attempt (in fact, a first) at having some of our own personally trained monkeys write this response. As you can see, there are clearly some flaws in having monkeys do technical work. There are many things, however, that monkeys are better suited for than humans (besides writing, stupid monkeys). In fact, you have provided us with a very powerful insight indeed. Why should our soldiers be fighting to hold onto Iraq, when we could effectively employ monkeys to do the same thing?
Our enemies in Iraq (actually from Iran — the Israelis told us to seal the damn border, but we didn’t want to for some reason) advocate the use of suicide bombers to attack military targets. In response, we here at Monkey Power have initiated a training program to accomplish the very same thing. The formula is simple: brainwash the monkeys. The monkeys are strapped into a chair and forced to endure hour upon hour of Christian fundamentalist propaganda. In particular, we have decided to focus on Darwinism vs. Creationism. We do this in order to undermine the monkey’s self esteem. We borrowed the technique with permission from U.S. intelligence agencies who had previously used similar means of control to train certain unnamed terrorist groups in Afghanistan that have since successfully slaughtered millions of innocents.
But getting back to the point: suicide monkeys. They are perfect for this sort of warfare. They are brainwashed beyond any shadow of hope, and strapped on those little monkey backs, a payload capable of annihilating all who oppose us. Monkeys could also be
used to set off landmines and perhaps deliver powerful biological weapons through a bite. A little rabies goes a long way, and I’m pretty sure the Geneva Convention didn’t bother addressing the use of monkeys to deliver these agents. I think we have a real legal loophole here, people.
So, are our soldiers in Iraq a bunch of monkeys? No. Should they be? Abso-freakin’-lutely. Making war for bananas! Monkey Power!
If you have a better idea, let me know,
Matthew D. Finkelstein
[Note: The views presented here are the opinion of just one monkey, and do not reflect the views of the Monkey Power Group as a whole (even though the author takes liberties in speaking for them.) – MF]
Well written, Matthew. Not much I can add to that, nor would I want to follow that.]
The Point at Which I Become Aware of Things
I came in to do my weekly internet radio show on Sunday, and in my inbox was waiting this email from my buddy Matthew (aka theShit):
I have to tell you all I’m not exactly sure what this guy is going on about. I think he is bluffing. He doesn’t have anything to gain by putting me down. But all the same you should know the story.
During the fourth of July parade some friends and I decided to dress up as monkeys and our float was dedicated to the enslavement of monkeys. It was pretty funny. There were monkeys and trainers; the trainers carried around whips and beat monkeys and monkeys were picking up garbage off the streets and there was a monkey powered the car (we simply put an exercise bike in the back of the truck, and had a a couple of monkeys push)…
Well anyhow. This guy writes and article in the paper and says the that the monkey float was unpatriotic and that we were making fun of soldiers and calling them monkeys. It was totally delusional. I responded to the article, despite many of my friends telling me not to, and they printed my reponse int he friday paper. essentially the article stated that while we do not think that the soldiers in Iraq are monkies, we strongly believe that they ought to be, and that we should brainwash our very own suicide monkeys .. blah blah blah .. It was essentially humorous.
Anyhow, I feel that this guys response is equally funny and I am not threatened in the least by his antics. Although how he knows so much about me is a mystery.
So I responded to theShit with some information regarding the fellow and a warning basically not to f34r this guy and he is l4m3.
Not but a few minutes later, I checked my buddy theSh!t’s email (a.k.a. Matthew), and his comment board included the following comments:
Matt and Rizzn were the last two Peace Monkeys we needed to identify.
Now the war begins.
Please be sure to give me the credit when the shit starts to hit the fan.
You dumb fucks
The Monkey, 07.11.2004, 8:35 am
So, according to Texas records, old Matt is a crack head. That explains it. No mercy for even stupid little crack heads.
We will be visitng you wherever you work you dumb fuck. You are not welcome in Telluride.
Oh by the way, I’ve seen Matt dance and it is just plain sad. I watched him once at the Moon and the girls next to me could not stop laughing. It made me sick.
He’s gotta be gay, there is no other explnation.
Monkey Killer, 07.11.2004, 8:45 am
Matthew is not gay, he is just a bit slow. Do a scan on his school records and you will see what I mean.
The Owl Investigation Team
Owl Investigations, 07.11.2004, 8:52 am
So far, the opposition’s not off to a good start in the civility department. It was at this point I decided I was going to take this seriously, because they had crossed the line of flamewar into “I’m going to intimidate you into doing what I want and there’s nothing you can do about it.” I have a big ego, and I don’t take to that sort of thing very well. Don’t believe me? Ask any of my friends, or my most recent ex (you can find our flame war on this very website).
I checked my other email address, the one that only is listed in a few places, and I got this email (full headers included — have fun!):
Delivery-date: Sun, 11 Jul 2004 09:16:52 -0700
Received: from dialup-22.214.171.124.dial1.denver1.level3.net ([126.96.36.199] helo=earthlink.net)
by asmtp-a063f33.pas.sa.earthlink.net with asmtp (Exim 4.34)
id 1Bjh0J-0005qL-L2; Sun, 11 Jul 2004 09:16:40 -0700
From: “Telluride by SkiMall” <email@example.com>
Cc: firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com
Subject: Peace Monkeys
I’ve read your bullshit on your blog. Thank you for the information. One of my companies Owl Investigations will do a complete background check on you, Rizzn and Eric.
In the meantime, we are contacting McKinsey Tribe Company and forwarding your posting as well as sending the others involving illegal drug use to the Telluride Marshals Department and the CBI so they can place you on the “watch list”. (emphasis added)
For your reference, check around with some long time locals and ask about Jeff Salwen (the Rabbi) and see what happens when idiots cross the wrong people.
I thought it important that you know that the things that are about to happen are a direct result of your actions at the July 4th parade.
Let’s see how you handle what’s around the corner.
Daddy is gonna have to sell a ton of berries to save your ass.
EarthLink Revolves Around You.
He’s going to put us on intelligence agency’s watch list — for drugs and speaking out about the war. That’s essentially what he’s saying here. He’s saying that he’s got the influence to ruin my life and Matthew’s life.
So, of course, I have to hit the hornet’s nest with an aluminum baseball bat (no one challenges my athori-tay on my own website).
Brainless Wonder, I’m oh so impressed by your terrorisation of my compadre Matthew. I mean, who wouldn’t be, you were able to research this fellow and find his BLOG. And as we all know, everyone’s deepest darkest secrets can be found on their home page.
What kind of morons do you take us for?
Your research apparently wasn’t done that deeply. What you didn’t find out is that I’m an executive in a highly successful software firm. You also didn’t find out that I am a DJ and manager of a highly popular underground internet radio station. And what you didn’t find out is that I own and operate a very highly trafficked website.
So let’s sum this up, shall we? You’ve declared war Matthew, “Rizzn” and Eric because of ideology differences between yourself and us. You’re going into battle against me, someone who has infinitely more effect on the court of public opinion than you can ever have with your puny little letters to the editor
for the Telluride Times or whatever rag you have up there. I’m respected amongst my peers.
You expect me to be afraid of being on a “watch list” of the Colorado Bureau of Investigations and the Telluride Marshal’s Department? You think someone of my stature isn’t already on much larger watch lists? I don’t talk about underwater basket weaving on my public forums, I talk about controversial issues. If your version of a Free America doesn’t include unpatriotic behavior by some of it’s citizens, then I don’t want to be a part of your America. Thankfully, however, your brand of nationalism is in the minority, and the rest of the country won’t stand for your intolerance.
Why don’t you open your mind a little bit and tune into my radio broadcast. It’s on tonight from 8-MidNight, EST @ http://cam-mafia.com:8000/listen.pls and on many other affiliate stations. Of course, if you had done your dilligent research like you said you had, you might already know this.
In fact, go ahead, and put me on your watch lists. Maybe then the government will start listening to the voice of what’s being thought about in America.
Why don’t you ask Dave or Nixxie of EP1 Radio what happens when people cross paths with us. You’re going to have to sell a lot of background checks to reverse the tide of my media campaign against you. 🙂
/rizzn (also, why don’t you try to figure out what my real name is).
Yeah yeah, I know, over the top, but shh, don’t tell him that, he reads the site. It was mostly parody anyways. The guy’s a moron, his letter was moronic, so I wanted to basically say everything he was saying, but bigger, badder, and with brass balls.
I am from Texas, I’ve gotta outdo everyone. I won’t be intimidated by a yeller coward from Telluride.
Anyways, he didn’t reply by this morning, so I sent a follow-up email:
Dear Brainless Wonder,
What’s the problem, cat got your tongue? I take it because of your dilligent researching, you or one of your employees at one of your companies (that’s a laugh) listened to my show last night. What, you missed it? Well, one of a few things happened:
1) You aren’t a dilligent researcher, and you were shamed by my astute observation of such and you didn’t tune in because of this.
2) You are a close-minded fool who is afraid I will turn you into an unpatriotic terrorist simply by listening to my broadcast.
3) You were ramping up your business in f34r of the media campaign I was going to unleash on you.
Please circle one and return. I really want to know why we haven’t felt your wrath yet. I mean, you promised us fireworks, and all I’ve seen explode is a dud. This is me poking you with sticks thru the cage at the zoo. Are you gonna get all mean now and beat your chest and ram the side of the cage?
Or maybe you could just write an apology letter. I’d call off my hounds.
I await your reply
From this reply, it’s obvious I’m trying to rile him up as much as possible. I really wanted a response out of this idiot. I got one. I’m not sure if this is his alter-ego or he really does have an employee named Jacob Reinhart, as I’m not local to Telluride. This is what he wrote though (once again, full headers included, enjoy!):
Delivery-date: Mon, 12 Jul 2004 09:44:21 -0700
Received: from fozzie.psp.pas.earthlink.net ([188.8.131.52])
by bittern.mail.pas.earthlink.net with esmtp (Exim 3.33 #1)
id 1Bk3ub-0007MK-00; Mon, 12 Jul 2004 09:44:17 -0700
Date: Mon, 12 Jul 2004 10:44:16 -0600 (GMT-06:00)
From: Jacob Reinhart <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: Please direct all…..
Dear Mr. Rizzin,
Please direct all futher correspondance to this e-mail (email@example.com) or you may have your legal counsel contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Mr. Heirich has turned this over to us and has had your e-mail and domain blocked from receiving further threats.
In addition, we have forwarded your threatening e-mail to the San Miguel Sheriffs Department and the Telluride Marshals Department for possible investigation.
Your e-mail, as well as your web postings, shows you are very disturbed individual who may need professional help.
Of course, in typical fashion, I responded with vim, vigor, and vitriol:
First of all, Rizzn is the first name, and it’s spelled R-I-Z-Z-N. If you can’t read correctly, how can you expect to have an accurate investigation of me?
Secondly, my legal counsel? Why would I have a lawyer involved with a petty case like this? I suppose I could sue you assholes for harrassment and making threatening remarks, but that’s a pretty weak case. No, I think I’ll fight my own battles on this one.
This is simply what we on the internet call a “flame-war.” Your moron client, alterego, or owner, or whatever he is to you, has made threats to a friend of mine, threatening his livelyhood, reputation, or freedom, depending on how you interpret his emails.
My emails were not threatening, they were simply stating what I was going to do, which is badmouth your client. I hope that you forwarded those emails with the attached correspondence from your client, as they were as threatening as my emails were.
In fact, if you are not familiar with the term parody, I suggest you re-read my first email and your client/owner/brainless wonder (I think I’ll just call him B.W. from now on, since he’s such a coward he won’t include his name on correspondence), and compare it to my email.
My email is pretty much a rewrite of his email, as well as a point by point rebuttal of his email. If you or moronic enough to defend him on this, I will trash your company as well as B.W.’s good name all over the internet in every venue I’m listened to on…. But you know how I’ll do it? I’ll simply post our correspondence. It speaks for itself.
Lastly, I’d like to ask you what qualifies you to judge my mental health? Are you a psychologist? Psychiatrist? Did you even take any mental health classes in highschool? Maybe did you read a website about mental health once?
I think that you folks in Telluride need to develop a sense of humor.
BTW, an informal poll of my peers determined that everyone thinks you might be the disturbed one. In a follow-up question, 50% of those polled thought that Owl Investigations is a dumb name.
For the record, and in all seriousness, I know my rights, and I know the limits of free speech. Matthew, myself, and presumably this Eric fellow, have not crossed any lines. If you and B.W. make any trouble happen for us, you are simply pulling strings in such a manner that only rich, elite, old-boy-net
work fucks can do. Trust me, as well known as we are, you do not want that to happen to us. We’ll become martyrs for the cause. We’ll become Kevin Mitnicks. We may not have mass media coverage of our actions now, but our cult hero status will elevate us into the limelight in a manner you are not looking to make happen.
This is not a threat, this is not a warning, this is a fact.
And then, for a final fsck you, I sent another email from a non-blocked domain, to B.W.:
You, my friend, are a coward.
You can make veiled threats, but when I type a bunch of bullsh!t into a email window, you block my domain without a reply?
People in glass houses should not throw stones.
/rizzn (have you figured out who I am yet, BW?)
At this point in the game, it was time to gather a little bit of information on the idiots behind this endeavor, so I googled “Owl Investigations” and came up with the following information:
Morning Glory Industries LLC is a Telluride, Colorado business and is a privately owned company that operates debt free.
SkiMall.Net / Telluride Cyberguide / Morning Glory Cyber / Morning Glory Yachting Vacations / Owl Investigations
P.O. Box 2787
551 West Colorado Avenue
Telluride, Colorado 81435
Then I went to a perennial favorite, anywho.com and looked up the name of the client mentioned in letter to the editor and the email from JR.
551 W Colorado Ave
TELLURIDE, CO 81435
Note: I want to be real clear about what I DON’T want you to do with this information: I do not want you to prank call him, I do not want you to record it, and I do not want you to send it to me so I can play it on my show.
Furthermore, I do not want you to DOS his website or IP addresses that were found in those email headers.
That would be just silly and wrong. And it would probably break the law. And we know that’s bad. I don’t endorse breaking the law.
To be continued ….
This undoubtably is only the first chapter of this saga. Pass this along. It’s not a major battle, but I’m sure all sorts of small things like this are happening around the country, and they don’t have ad hoc champions like me to really spread the word. Maybe they will not happen so often if this one is stopped… who knows, perhaps my faith in this country will be restored if something actualy happens that is positive as a result of this story being passed along.
At the very least it’s good for a couple chuckles if you’re not involved in it. 🙂