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TDEC Official: Water Complaints Could Be Considered an 'Act of Terrorism'

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posted on Jun, 22 2013 @ 03:31 PM
I concur with this theory. It is obviously just a water complaint.

posted on Jun, 22 2013 @ 05:37 PM
He's probably just been annoyed whilst in the conduct of his business by too many persons worried about fluoride in their water.

He would probably be elegantly tutored by a long term soak in pure fluoride.

Is anyone else having fantasies about figuring out how to permanently shutter and lock the doors on all government and banking institutions? Starting in D.C. and working our way out from there?

posted on Jun, 23 2013 @ 05:37 AM

Originally posted by boncho
If it's true (I didn't take the time to go through the sources in this case, my apologies) it's just a new age witch hunt or inquisition.

Frankly, I'm happy the sway is going towards terrorism. It's so nefarious!

Sure beats the days of "That boy is on drugs!"

We may finally see a shift in persecuting people for no reason, and it will be in a new name. All very interesting from a scholarly point of view..

It's happened in the past. Look at the lyrics for Steppenwolf's "The Ostrich"

In the 1960's, anyone who was opposed to urban sprawl and "panzer divisions of bulldozers mounting a blitzkrieg against the countryside" was considered an enemy of the people, a communist, a dupe, or a super-dupe. The money-makers got their way, the railways were closed down and replaced with freeways and roads.

If you are going to make a complaint, then it has to be more than "it tastes funny". They need to take water samples and send them to an independent lab for chemical analysis. Then they can send the report in to the EPA. It takes a bureaucracy to fight a bureaucracy (justice system or government regulator vs. corporations or banks).

posted on Jun, 27 2013 @ 03:39 PM
I don't know what's happened to the Tennesseans there.

That moron needs to hear from the people who pay him, the citizens he has offended, possibly threatened under flag of authority. Rail, feathers and tar optional, but recommended.

posted on Jun, 27 2013 @ 04:07 PM
You can call Tennessee Department of Environment & Conservation, Division of Water Resources at (615) 532-0191 and inquire what is being done to remove this guy [Sherwin Smith] from office.

EDIT: They redirected me to Meg Lockhart (their media PR person), 615-253-1916, so if you call you might want to lead by saying that won't suffice.

Also surprise surprise, they will be sending me an email explaining this position, I can forward it to anybody who wants it. The good news is that a lot of people seem to be calling. Here is the email:

"Good afternoon,

Meg Lockhart let me know of your concern surrounding the inappropriate and inaccurate remarks made at a May 29 meeting concerning water issues in Mt. Pleasant by Sherwin Smith. Please accept our apology for the statement. Mr. Smith regrets how he communicated in that instance, and while he did try to clarify his intent at the meeting, it does not change the fact that the choice of words was inappropriate. We take our duty to serve the public very seriously, and recognize how we communicate is a direct reflection of that service. The department is working to address this issue, and to provide broader customer service training for all employees.

Safe drinking water is critical to the health of our citizens and our communities and we take the quality of the drinking water served to the public very seriously. All of the sampling data and inspection information we have to date indicates the Mount Pleasant water supply is meeting all water quality standards and is safe. We appreciate there is concern by the advocacy group, SOCM, and members of the community and TDEC staff has been working over the past year to a) further investigate those concerns, and b) share the information we have, which all indicates a safe public water supply.

Over the past year, TDEC has attended six meetings with SOCM, four of which were broader community meetings. We have openly shared information related to sampling results from the Mt. Pleasant water treatment plant that indicate a safe drinking water supply. We have offered to test the drinking water in private homes of anyone who wishes, and called 70 people who submitted water quality complaint forms collected by SOCM to try and arrange sampling. To date, none have wished for us to do that sampling. That offer still stands. If anyone in Mt. Pleasant wishes to have the drinking water from their tap sampled, TDEC will do so. This will help us identify any issue that may exist, or help ease fears for people if the sampling is consistent with the sampling from the plant and indicates the drinking water is safe.

There are multiple mechanisms that serve as checks and balances in place should there be even a potential issue with the quality of drinking water coming from a water treatment plant. For example, TDEC did require Mt. Pleasant to issue three precautionary boil water advisories in the past two years in Mount Pleasant. Two were for line breaks and one due to operator error at the plant. Fortunately, all samples taken during that time met drinking water criteria and the boil water notices were precautionary in nature. They were lifted upon receipt of sampling results indicating the water supply was safe.

We are dedicated to the safety of the public’s water supply throughout Tennessee and will continue to work to investigate and share information. To date, all scientific data indicates the water in Mt. Pleasant is safe, but TDEC remains committed to listening, investigating and sharing any results with SOCM and the citizens of Mount Pleasant."

And here is my response:

"Thank you Tisha!

My real concern is that complaints about public services actually /are/ grounds for domestic terrorism charges. To this end I would like to speak with Sherwin Smith, because I cannot substantiate that claim myself so far. I would like to see a transcript of the full meeting - surely there is some contextual conversation which was not reported by SOCM that would help to clarify his remarks; but, I doubt a transcript exists, so his personal account would be better than nothing. Do you know of a phone number or email address at which I could contact him?

Moreover, I do not think he is correct. Not to put too fine a point on it, is he going to keep his job? His is not an elected position so it is the responsibility of his superiors to replace him if he is incapable of doing his job, namely, serving the public. The implication of his position is that anybody voicing concerns will be reported to Homeland Security - but it's also illegal to give false information to the authorities, such as claiming somebody is a terrorist when one knows full well that they are not. I would like to know whether he will be undergoing any psychological evaluations to ensure that he is still competent, and whether his integrity is compromised by commercial interests.

In short:

- How can I contact Sherwin Smith (if not, why not)?
- Do you know of a transcript for the meeting? If not, it is all the more necessary for me to speak with Mr. Smith.
- If his claims are unsubstantiated, is anything being done within the TDEC to find a suitable replacement for Mr. Smith, or are any measures being taken to ensure that the public can communicate with him, without being threatened?

I understand if you are unable to answer all of these questions fully, but if you cannot, perhaps you can help direct me to the proper channels.

Thank you for taking the time to respond!

Kind regards,

I tried to distill some of the points made here. We all know how their response will read. But at least they will actually have to physically write one out rather than sending an automated response.

EDIT - Here is the response:

"You are welcome. I am not aware of a transcript for the meeting. In discussing this with Mr. Smith, he indicated that he was thinking about the Patriot Act when he made his incorrect and inflammatory reference concerning terrorism. While the definition of terrorism in that Act is very broad, complaints to this department concerning drinking water quality, valid or not, clearly do not fall within it. Mr. Smith has apologized. Both he and the department regret this occurred, and are making every effort to see that it does not happen again.

Mr. Smith’s intent was to prevent panic in the community based on repeated unfounded allegations that the Mount Pleasant drinking water supply is unsafe. His statement, however, was wrong and should not have been made. We are working to try and regain the trust of the people we serve. Today, we had teams out in the water system taking samples from a variety of places, both public and private, so we could reach out and help provide more information to the community.


I replied:

"Ok, I'm glad to hear it. I would still like to speak to Mr. Smith to advise him that the Patriot Act is unconstitutional, and though it is codified at the moment, it will not be forever. He may not have actually read it. If you do not have his contact information, then that's ok, I will look for it on the TDEC website and if I can't find it there, I will get back in touch with Alan Schwendimann (whose office directed me to Meg Lockhart initially) to see if he can get me in touch with Smith. You indicated that you have spoken to him personally, so that is why I ask.

I do have more questions, regarding the labs in which water samples are tested. I doubt their findings. If you are able to speak about this, then let me know, otherwise I will get the information from Mr. Schwendimann. I'm sure you're busy and I don't want to take up too much of your time. Thank you for the genuine response."

So that's that. Now what I would like to know and will look into (and I'll bring my findings back to this thread), is who is testing the water. "Private labs" I suppose. But which ones, and what are they testing for. I can't mention fluoride obviously because that's sanctioned by regulation, but that is not the contaminants that I'm assuming the people of Mt. Pleasant are concerned about.
edit on 27-6-2013 by Samtzurr because: Continuous updates

posted on Jun, 27 2013 @ 07:40 PM
I also emailed Alan Schwendimann of Division of Water Services:

"Hello Alan Schwendimann or Division of Water Services contactee.

I recently spoke with Meg Lockhart and Tisha Calabrese from External Affairs regarding comments made by Sherwin Smith (paraphrasing, "airing complaints public services may be grounds for domestic terrorism charges"). My assumption before emailing them was that, given that his comments were made about a month ago, either he had resigned, been fired, or was undergoing some sort of psychological evaluation and investigation into his motives. I learned from that email conversation that he has merely recanted - but this does not change that concerned citizens at the meeting in question were bullied into silence. I also learned that he was basing his speculation on the Patriot Act, which is of course unconstitutional and therefore cannot be considered a legitimate law (not to mention his interpretation of it was entirely unbased). Before the Patriot Act as written can be considered legal, the 1st, 4th, 5th, and 6th amendments to the Constitution must be revised - otherwise it puts citizens in the paradoxical position of upholding /either/ the Supreme Law OR legislative, positive law. It is dangerous to a free, democratic society to have public officials referencing acts which have no force of law and undermines trust in your department. If you're going to assume that the Patriot Act /does/ have force of law then you can also necessarily prove that the Constitution is previously invalidated. I have heard such arguments, but I am not inclined to believe they are true. If you are unable to do so, I would instead like to hear your reasoning as to why Mr. Smith is still holding his position. I also sought out Smith's contact information, but I have not received a response to that request yet - can you provide me with that? If action is not taken by your department then it falls upon the public to educate Mr. Smith as to how the rule of law works, otherwise he is liable to make similar errors in judgment in the future. If you cannot provide me with that information then I would like to know who can.

That is my first issue; the second thing I would like to hear addressed is this: Which labs are water samples from the Mt. Pleasant area being tested in, and what are they testing for? I have read that they only test for living organisms, and not, for example, chemically unbonded aluminum, which is far more concerning, or other contaminants from automobile fluids, herbicides and pesticides. Perhaps your department is incapable of removing these contaminants satisfactorily, but if so, the public should be made aware, rather than being told that the water supply is not contributing to negative health defects. My previous correspondence with Tisha Calabrese indicated that "There are multiple mechanisms that serve as checks and balances in place should there be even a potential issue with the quality of drinking water coming from a water treatment plant," and that "[precautionary measures] were lifted upon receipt of sampling results indicating the water supply was safe." I would like to know the process by which the water supply is considered to be safe (namely, which tests water samples are subjected to). If you cannot provide me with that information, then you may be able to get me into contact with somebody who can.

In short, I hope that your reply will answer these three questions:

- Why is Mr. Smith still occupying his position; what has been done to assure that his soundness of mind and integrity are still intact?
- How can I contact Mr. Smith?
- Which labs are testing the water samples taken and what are they testing for? Again, I do not think that living organisms in the water are actually the problem, I think it is the toxins and unbonded soft metals, but the labs are possibly not testing for those.

I appreciate your careful consideration of these questions, or otherwise, referral to somebody who is able to answer them.


posted on Jul, 3 2013 @ 07:29 AM
reply to post by Samtzurr

No response?

I guess Alan Schwendimann of Division of Water Services isn't a snappy responder... or he doesn't feel the need to respond at all...

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