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The Rosemary Stretch, Weiner’s Junk, and Schrag’s Cellphone.

The powerful do like to test our incredulity. Add state newly-former Department of Energy and Environmental Protection Deputy Commissioner Jonathan Schrag to the roll call of political figures who concocted the most extraordinary fantasies to sustain themselves in office. The miscreants make a mess, get caught and then try to blame the mysteries of technology.

Yesterday, Schrag ran a couple of nutty theories up the flagpole to see if he could escape responsibility for a menacing and creepy message in his voice left at 11:45 p.m. last Thursday on the voicemail of the leader of a conservative women’s group. The message was accompanied by Schrag’s cellphone number on the recipient’s answering machine. Rosemary Wood’s forgot to take her foot off the pedal for 18 1/2 crucial minutes of Nixon White House tapes. Looks like Jonathan Schrag–or the spirit of Alexander Graham Bell–forgot to disable the caller ID on his cellphone as midnight approached last Thursday. The message, Schrag claiming to be from the fictitious “Democratic Electronic Monitoring Service” was memorialized on Cynthia David’s machine.

First Schrag–delivering his story through DEEP mouthpiece Dennis Schain–said he lost his personal and state cellphones last week. He claimed to have reported the phones missing so it couldn’t have been him. That tale crumbled by mid-afternoon and was replaced by bafflement. How could this happen? He once oversaw millions in carbon credits, but the Fulbright scholar had no notion of how his voice from his phone got on that stranger’s answering machine. Mercy, technology sure is confusing. Schain, assisting in perpetrating the preposterous, adopted the Anthony Weiner defense and posited that clever interlopers can perform the most mysterious acts to other people’s devices these days. Schrag claimed someone had recorded a comment he made in a social setting–but refused to say where or to whom–and then by unknown means got the message on David’s voicemail with Schrag’s caller ID. They adopted the tone of a victim.

Administration officials said Tuesday night they were seeking his phone records. Those might have solved the mystery. Seemed like an easy solution, but instead he was forced to resign his position today, whining that ‘my continued present will be a distraction.” If Schrag does not want to return to tony Manhattan after his forced resignation, there’s an opening at TicketNetwork. And there’s still an apology and explanation due Cynthia David.