Censorship stifles debate; when a Society is no longer able to communicate in a meaningful manner it ceases to be a democracy. I have been on the phone since early this morning and fielding emails from Contacts within the Media, Contractors and Regional Order Mills with respect to this Article. The crux of what we are going to discuss is the fact that Safeguard Properties (SGP) has churned out a new Contract (Acknowledgement) after the recent Huffington Post article by Ben Hallman. The new Contract seems to be long on the list of Draconian Demands and light on the Contractor rights. I will pull the link off of Pastebin tomorrow.
As an independent contractor for Safeguard Properties Management, LLC (“Safeguard”), I shall keep and maintain any and all information I receive from Safeguard (“Confidential Information”) on a confidential basis. Confidential information includes, but is not limited to … [Emphasis mine]
So, my interpretation here is that SGP has set the stage for any legal scenario they may deem appropriate. Remember, this is the FIRST sentence in the Contract! Now, SGP has the right to proffer any Contract they want; however, all contracts must pass Constitutional Muster … and/or be valid under the Uniform Commercial Code (UCC) where applicable. Tennessee is one such state which submits to portions thereof. With that said, we haven’t even gotten to the real meat in this Contract.
Copying, using, distributing or any other type or manner of disclosing Confidential Information to any third party … without the prior written consent of Safeguard’s CEO, is strictly prohibited. This prohibition shall apply to any type or manner of unauthorized communication, whether verbal, written or electronic. Electronic communication includes, but is not limited to, communication or data transmitted by email, chat room, internet, blogs, and instant or text messaging. Any unauthorized use or communication may subject me to civil and/or criminal penalties … [Editor’s note: I became nauseated here so I stopped typing the verbatim].
I am really not sure whom SGP uses to hammer out these documents. The interjection of “internet” in mid thought strikes me as unprofessional; it simply does not have that polished feel to it. Hey, budget cutbacks are hitting everywhere so maybe it was outsourced? I don’t know. What I do know is that if this was put under a Constitutional Microscope it would fail miserably. Let me tell you why I feel this way:
The first sentence of this document is ambiguous and duplicitous at the same time. First, SGP asserts that whomever signs this document agrees to keep “…any and all information [they] receive from Safeguard … [o]n a confidential basis.” The breadth of this is extremely far reaching and subjects a signatory, in theory to poverty and prison. Second, and remember we are just on the first TWO paragraphs, no one at any time could EVER communicate with ANYONE (wife, Catholic Priest if one was so inclined for Confession, or even the President of the United States of America should a terrorist be holed up in a property WITHOUT “…written consent of Safeguard’s CEO… .”
Now, I want to get knee deep in this because I honestly do not believe SGP thought this through (or maybe they did). First, if the signatory has to file a Police Report on behalf of SGP, they could be sued or put in prison. Why? “…writen consent of Safeguard’s CEO… .” Next, a signatory may not perform an eviction under this Contract as they could NOT communicate with law enforcement without “…written consent of Safeguard’s CEO… .” Remember, not a single work order bears the signature of Safeguard’s CEO nor is any employee or agent thereof empowered with a Power of Attorney by Safeguard’s CEO. A bit out there? Well, let’s not forget what just happened with me and the National Association of Mortgage Field Services (NAMFS). Let us not forget that in the case of one female Source in Michigan, she is being charged back for a job in 2010! Let us also not forget that SGP is facing hundreds of lawsuits and has a vested interest in compartmentalizing information.
In the event I engage subcontractors to perform services on my behalf for Safeguard, I agree to require all such parties, as a condition to their engagement, to agree to be bound by provisions substantially identical to those included in this Acknowledgement relating to the treatment of Confidential Information.
I am not going to even touch this one. G-d forbid Pablo and Boris are hired and they go on a drunk and post all over Facebook. Let me walk you through something a bit more simple: You create a Portfolio showing the great work you do, but forget to sanitize (intelligence term) not only any descriptive characteristics of the property, you also forget to edit the ExiF data! Yeah, you get the point … poverty and prison are possibilities.
Look, I get Klein, Jaffa et al., want to keep everything under wraps. Every company has a right to keep their Confidential Information; hell, they have a right to proprietary, economic and intellectual data (they never addressed any of this) protected. The problem with this Contract — and it IS a Contract — is that myself and others feel it trespasses upon certain inalienable rights human beings have under the Constitution of the United States of America. Perhaps I and others in the Media are wrong. Perhaps the thresh hold which borders on that which the National Security Agency and the Central Intelligence Agency use daily are now, part and parcel, the landscape of simply cutting some grass.
What I know is that when the polygraph comes I am jumping ship. I know I am deeply troubled by this trend in attempting to silence the free speech of United States Citizens. I am fearful that the strong arm utilization of Contracts couched in such a manner as to make a human being choose between feeding their family from income derived from the profession they held previous to this document or being forced to find a new vocation so that they are allowed to speak freely is dangerous. Censorship is never a healthy goal. I do not know if this is SGP’s goal or not.
So, we wanted a good article for the May Day Revolution and it happened across the desk today. Stay tuned for tomorrow’s article which will get into Section Two. Yeah, we are not even half way down the FIRST page or into the FOURTH paragraph! In closing, I am not a Safeguard Properties Contractor. They owe me no money nor do we have any relationship which I am aware of.