An Apology to Irvine City Council Candidate Dale Cheema on Behalf of Dan Chmielewski

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Dear Mr. Dale Cheema,

I don’t believe that you and I have ever met; nor do I know that you even know who I am.  But as one father and husband to another, and as a Democrat and an Orange County political blogger, I want to offer you my apologies for the vicious action taken against you today on The Liberal OC blog by its owner, publisher, editor, and virtually sole author of original content, Dan Chmielewski.  He is commonly called “Dan C” (among many other things, some of which you may now be calling him yourself) and I refer to him as such below.

Dan C has gratuitously publicized what I presume must be among the very worst moments of your life (let alone the rest of your family’s) as apparent retaliation (which he’ll likely insincerely and ineffectiively deny) for your sending a relatively banal attack mailer on Dan C’s favored Irvine City Council candidate, Melissa Fox, on a basis that (if I remember correctly) had questionable merit.

Despite Dan C’s ties to the Chair of the Democratic Party of Orange County, as well as a California Democratic Party official serving our portion of the state and many others, I do not believe that they could have read the gratuitous penultimate paragraph of his attack on you without something like the horror that I felt when doing so.  It does not represent the best of our local party, or the average of our local party, or even anything above the grime at the very lowest level of our party.  It was pure thuggery and I am ashamed by my institutional association with it.

I am trying to determine how I can write about it without calling additional attention to your family’s personal pain, and I don’t see how I can.  So I am reproducing the end of his article below with the worst details blurred out and a link to his own piece (for those who absolutely must click, but wisely want to avoid the rest of the site) through an outside site that will deliver a personal message to Dan C when he checks his incoming referrals.

Dan Chmielewski tries his hand at inflicting collateral damage for political gain.

Dan Chmielewski tries his hand at inflicting significant collateral damage on family members for political gain.

I am apologizing to you on his behalf for three reasons:

(1) Because Dan C will never ever do so himself, unless ordered to by someone with influence over him, because frankly there seems to be something not right in his head that is tied to something definitely not right in his heart.  I don’t know whether its a form of autism or full-blown sociopathy or mere garden-variety sadism, but he does not seem to understand that there are lines of decency that one does not cross.  I do not believe that I can actually shame him with this post — I don’t get the sense that he feels shame — but at least I can let you know that others understand how terrible you must feel and sympathize with your pain.

(2) Because I want to distance Democrats, the Democratic Party, the Democratic Party of Orange County, and political bloggers in and around Orange County from his despicable actions.

(3) Because I want to reassure you of a few things, which I will now do.

The offending paragraph — coming out of nowhere — begins like this:

“Those wanting to vote for Cheema ought to be aware he’s concerned operatives will use” [the terrible tragedy caused by the negligence of a loved one of yours, of which you had no part, and which I will not detail here because its details are immaterial].

He then counsels you:

Dale ought to try promoting the positives about his experience and his campaign instead of going low.


About Greg Diamond

Somewhat verbose attorney, semi-retired due to disability, residing in northwest Brea. Occasionally runs for office against bad people who would otherwise go unopposed. Got 45% of the vote against Bob Huff for State Senate in 2012; Josh Newman then won the seat in 2016. In 2014 became the first attorney to challenge OCDA Tony Rackauckas since 2002; Todd Spitzer then won that seat in 2018. Every time he's run against some rotten incumbent, the *next* person to challenge them wins! He's OK with that. Corrupt party hacks hate him. He's OK with that too. He does advise some local campaigns informally and (so far) without compensation. (If that last bit changes, he will declare the interest.)