A whole lot of people who work for the gubmint do blogging, including partisan blogging and other kinds of stuff that just generally doesn't fall under the purview of their gubmint jobs. Most of us, though, take care not to do it on gubmint time with gubmint resources.
For all I know, Kevin Fischer (one of the NOW bloggers) is just as careful as I try to be about doing his blog. Fischer's day job--when he isn't filling in for the equally vacuous Mark Belling when Belling fills in for the equally bloviating Rush Limbaugh--is working for State Senator Mary Lazich. I don't want to suggest that aides can't blog on their own time or that Fischer is breaking the law by blogging on state time. And certainly I'm not suggesting that Fischer's "free speech" be impaired. On the contrary, the more a buffoon like Fischer does his antics, the more he discredits his side of the argument. (When a conservative has irritated both Wigderson and Dooley, you know there's something wrong with him. UPDATE: See the comments for discussion of this point.)
But I do believe it's time for Senator Lazich to either have a heart-to-heart with Fischer about his blogging or else cut him loose. My good friend and yours capper--occasionally known as The King of the Hate Left--has this run-down over at Whallah!
There's an entire world of bloggers on the NOW sites that I just don't tend to pay attention to. But it looks to me like the personal attacks, nasty language, vitriol, and general priggishness just in the works (mostly the comments) of Kevin Fischer far exceeds what you generally find in the conservative blogs here on the Blogger-WordPress axis. Fischer makes his living on my tax dollars in the office of a prominent local Republican who has shown herself to be opposed to such priggishness (h/t Linda Richter).
Again, I don't want to shut Fischer up--and if I were running a campaign against Lazich I would just love to plaster Fischer's own words on a mailer about his boss. But there is something to be said for maintaining some level of propriety among those whose blogging habits are at least partially enabled by my taxes.
Additional reading: Pundit Nation, Kay's Blue Racine.
Also: It's not vitriolic, but it seems to me that copying and pasting an entire article out of the New York Times poses its own ethical issues.