"A government big enough to give you everything you want, is big enough to take away everything you have"
Thomas Jefferson

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Jefferson County Legislative District 4 Successor


Allen T Drake
Theresa, NY

Pending a vote by the Jefferson County Board of Legislators reports are the successor to Addie Jenne Russell's seat will be Mr. Drake.

A retired teacher and current Town of Theresa Supervisor, Mr Drake appears to be an amenable choice of both Democrats and Republicans.

Uhm, You Know!

Mix an uhm here and another uhm there and throw in few a lot of "you know"
and pretty soon you have an interview and you know, you uhm might just be the next US Senator, you know!

 

Senate "Caretaker"

Unbelievable, can't make a decision, can't run a selection process with out bogging it down with people who think they are entitled to the job.

AP's Mike Gormley floats the idea that Governor Paterson could appoint a "caretaker" to the seat. A caretaker would hold the seat until the next election when the people jockeying for the appointed job can actually run a campaign for the job.  

Here is the story - click here

Local Law # 1 of 1997

Local Law #1 of 1997 determies the process for for filling a vacancy on the Board of Legislature.

The vacancy is filled by a majority vote of the Board of Legislators.

No place in the local law does it state the Board of Legislature is to entertain a nomination from a political party. The Legislators should avoid partisan politics and appoint someone who is qualified.

The Real Deal

The real deal comes forward on several fronts.

1. Danger Democrat is no longer and now it is Jefferson Democrat with no posting of comments or responses. After a month of speculation, the real deal is Ted Ford is a staff member of incoming Assemblywoman Addie Jenne, so just like Drew Mangione's blog, the sun has set on the renegade Ted Ford's blog! Side note: 2 out of 3 of Addie's staff members come from outside her district, must be no talented people in the 118th Assembly district.

The Democrats do not like differing opinions, only Sean Hennessey's opinions.  (Can you say RAILROAD) 

2. District 4 Legislative seat. The local Democrat party is no different than the state or national party. Instead of making an appointment based on qualifications, Sean Hennessey and company are taking the most partisan political route possible.

Jan Martusewicz who is likely one of the most qualified and has the ability to get up to speed on the issues and serve the people well is being overlooked for partisan reasons. According to Hennessey, Martueswicz did not support Sir Darrel when Darrel was at the county and was swept in as chair during a back room deal. Believe it, Martusewicz gave his commitment of support to someone and kept it. Democrats are not interested in a good quality, such as keeping your word, nor that he can work across party lines.  No, Sean Hennessey and company just use lines like "working across party lines" as campaign rhetoric.

3. Who will come forward? According to a source in Theresa, the Democrats are having difficulty finding someone to fill the slot, but a couple of names are possible to come forward today. The Democrats are most interested in Allen Drake, the town supervisor and a retired teacher. Another person by the name of Howard Schnettler, a frequent poster on the Jefferson County Web board is also interested, but the Democrats are most interested in Drake and you can expect that name to be thrown out today.

Feel free to comment away, unlike Danger Jefferson Democrat, we still accept and appreciate differing opinions.

Monday, December 29, 2008

County Legislative District 4 Successor

Successor candidates for the soon to be open Jefferson County legislative seat in district 4 are swirling in the wind out there.

The Democrats apparently have a person but have yet to put any name or qualifications forward for consideration by the Jefferson County Board of Legislature for a seat that is vacated in three days. A move such as this can be considered by most as poor planning by the Democratic party, not to forward a name for timely and appropriate consideration.

This is a process for the appointment to fill the seat and it is process may require negotiations as the ultimate decision is the County Board of Legislature, not a political party decision. Therefore, it is in the Democratic Party's best interest to forward a name or acquiesce their position.

The most qualified choice to fill the seat and a person able to come up to speed on issues quickly and adequately represent the people of district 4 given the brief time left in the term is former county legislator Jan Martusewicz.

Sources say Martusewicz was well respected by the Democrats and former county legislator colleagues when he last served on the county board, but has not even been contacted by the party leaders. Martusewizc, according to people who have spoke with him, is interested, but maybe hesitant because of party leaders.

The main focus for appointing a person to serve out the term should be qualifications, not partisan politics.

Jan Martusewicz is the best, most effective choice to fill a one year term and serve the people of district 4, regardless of whether or not he is even interested in running for the seat again in November.

If the local Democrats have not learned anything else from the youthful leadership era of their National and State party leaders is that appointments to fill open seats should be based on some sort of qualifications.

This is not Kansas Illnois, Toto!

What Will Be The Hot Issues For 2009

The way 2008 is ending, 2009 will fire up with hot issues. Lets take a look at what will be hot in 2009 at the national, state and local levels. Add your own issues or thoughts to the issues.

Local:

Mercy - The community must come up with a plan for a possible Mercy closure. The plan needs to address the residents care, which needs to remain local, retention of the jobs in the area, the reuse or demolition of the building. The task is best suited to be handled by a group overseen by city and county elected officials, it has no business being handle by a volunteer group such as the Assisted Living Community Group as well the issue cannot be solved without Samaritan at the table. AL group should certainly have a seat at the table but not the lead role. The community needs a change in direction of where this issue is headed and how it is currently being handled.

Jail - The county will address the design and building of a jail for the future, a project that will cost local taxpayers millions of dollars. All of this because a state agency says they have to, forget the fact the present jail is being underutilized. Forget about the fact, the state agency does not allow a facility built for a certain capacity to reach that capacity. They are a typical state agency, in here to exercise their authority no matter what the cost to the taxpayer.

Budgets - The local budgets will continue to bleed red ink while the state passes around their pain, they will make it others pain.

Windmills - local town, villages and county will continue to gnash their respective teeth over how much they will all cash in on the windmills, all the while the companies will be laughing on their way to the bank over the PILOT they are about to agree to.

State:
  
Budget - The Governor and Legislature will continue to do the bump and grind on the budget and romance us with rhetoric such as what Paterson did and then he unveils a budget that does not decrease spending, only "slows down the growth of spending." UGH! His budget certainly did not meet his rhetoric. He proposed a budget that has slight growth of spending and he is using it as a political weapon against the legislature. If they increase spending they look irresponsible, if they decrease (like he should have) then they become the bad guys of government, in the meantime Paterson looks ahead at his election.  

Senate - The leadership battle will continue especially with mad man former gang of three four member Senator Elect Hiram Monserrate's recent episode of woman abuse which puts his swearing into office in jeopardy. The leadership struggle is in high gear. Not to worry though, whomever emerges is weak in a sense there will be no solid majority on either side.

National:

Three Words Obama, Hillary and Economy.

McHugh - We will watch Johnny Mac at his new leadership role and will be looking for the benefits. Go get'em J M.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Senate Tug Of War

The tug of war for the Senate continues between the "Gang of Three" and Senate Democrats. Now the Democrats have allies in the leadership battle.

The tail wagging dog coalition is comprised of Unite-HERE/ New York Hotel Trades Council, the Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union, the Communications Workers of America, NARAL Pro-Choice NY, the Empire State Pride Agenda, Tenants PAC, and the Working Families Party.

These are the able hands that have been equivocally selected to run our state government from behind the scenes.

Does it look like the North Country has a voice?

NO

Here is one of their mailings.



 

Sorry, Just A Little Busy As Of Late

P IV has been a little busy as of late, and will catch up shortly. The typical hustle and bustle of the holidays.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

This Was Good Enough For A Free Lift

This is a good piece posted on Josh Painter's Blog over at Red State that kind of puts two issues into perspective.

Princess vs Palin, Parker vs Painter



The debate over Caroline Kennedy’s qualifications for a seat in the U.S. Senate is getting louder, and the number of side arguments over the way JFK’s daughter and Alaska’s governor have been evaluated in their respective quests for higher public office are increasing. Sweet Caroline’s supporters say she deserves her shot at the Hillary Clinton chair. Sarah Barracuda’s troops point to the rank hypocrisy of those who give Ms. Kennedy a free pass after having savaged Gov. Palin.
National Review’s Jonah Goldberg argues that Sarah Palin earned her job as Governor of Alaska through her own hard work and dedication, and he decries the viciousness of the personal attacks that were made on her and her family after she was nominated by John McCain and approved by the delegates to the Republican National Convention as the party’s 2008 vice presidential candidate. He says that Caroline Kennedy hasn’t earned a Senate seat:
Simply, the Kennedy clan is no priestly caste, serving as the conscience of the nation, and its progeny do not deserve eternal deference.

Now, I know the comparison between Palin and Caroline Kennedy is not perfect. Each has strengths where the other has weaknesses, and the jobs of senator and vice president aren’t identical (the former actually has more responsibility, for starters).
But the comparison is nonetheless revealing. Palin’s selection triggered troughs of bile, vomited up from nearly every respectable liberal quarter. A Florida congressman, and Obama surrogate, insinuated that Palin was a “Nazi sympathizer” and anti-Semite (she’s not, but Caroline Kennedy’s grandfather was). Her by-the-bootstraps story was ridiculed by nearly every ex-debutante newsreader and avowed “feminist” in America.
Meanwhile, Caroline, with a resume perfectly suited to being a Kennedy and little else, is a Cinderella who deserves a Senate seat because, well, she just does.
Whatever Palin’s faults, Sarah Barracuda’s America has a lot more going for it than Sweet Caroline’s.
Most pundits to the right of political center make similar arguments. But there is one glaring exception - columnist Kathleen Parker. Parker has already earned herself a reputation as a Palin-obsessed Christophobe, and even her friends have had enough of it. Her latest Townhall.com column argues that it’s no big deal to hand Caroline a Senate seat because the Kennedy heir would just be one among one hundred in the chambers and therefore couldn’t do that much damage. Palin, on the other hand, gasps Parker, wanted to be just a heartbeat away from having her finger on the button labeled “nuclear holocaust.” It never occurs to the caustic columnist that Sarah Palin has a deep and abiding respect for life and would be one of the last persons on the face of the earth to casually bring an end to so many lives on the scale demanded by global thermonuclear war.
But Parker gives herself away as just another e-mail inbox addressee for the sort of anti-Palin talking points widely distributed by our Democrat friends:
Palin’s demonstrated lack of basic knowledge, her intellectual incuriosity, her inability to articulate ideas or even simple thoughts all combined to create an impression of not-quite-there.
Even Stevie Wonder could spot the talking point memes in this paragraph, memes which the anti-Palin elites have been spouting for months. Let’s take a look at them.
It’s curious that the “lack of basic knowledge” meme hasn’t dropped of the talking points white paper, considering that Joe Biden is about to take the oath of office to become Vice President of the United States, the same office Parker and her fellow elites insist Sarah Palin was not qualified for. Biden has demonstrated a lack of basic knowledge on the subjects of American History, the Constitution, basic foreign policy, elementary school arithmetic and even the energy policy of the administration he will be working for. And, yes, he will be just a heartbeat away…
The “intellectual incuriosity” meme is one that I have already addressed when I pointed out that the President of Afghanistan, after meeting with Palin, “found her quite a capable woman” and said that “She asked the right questions on Afghanistan.” That is not the impression a person who is intellectually incurious makes on a head of state. But there are some additional arguments to make on this point. Elaine Lafferty, feminist, Democrat and former editor in chief of Ms. magazine, writes that Gov. Palin is smart, curious and insightful:
Now by “smart,” I don’t refer to a person who is wily or calculating or nimble in the way of certain talented athletes who we admire but suspect don’t really have serious brains in their skulls. I mean, instead, a mind that is thoughtful, curious, with a discernable pattern of associative thinking and insight. Palin asks questions, and probes linkages and logic that bring to mind a quirky law professor I once had. Palin is more than a “quick study”; I’d heard rumors around the campaign of her photographic memory and, frankly, I watched it in action. She sees. She processes. She questions, and only then, she acts. What is often called her “confidence” is actually a rarity in national politics: I saw a woman who knows exactly who she is.
Finally, Parker drags up the “inability to articulate ideas or even simple thoughts” meme that is a popular weapon among the elites to fire at Palin. Had Parker and her Palin-bashing fellow elites bothered to watch the interview of Gov. Palin conducted by CNBC’s Maria Bartiromo, they would have witnessed the object of their venom ably and effectively articulating ideas on energy independence, jobs, conservation and other issues. Her appearance on Charlie Rose with Gov. Janet Napalitano (as well as a few minutes with her solo in the green room) again showed Palin to be able to discuss ideas effectively without benefit of teleprompters, written notes or coaching. Palin’s performance in the vice presidential debate has been praised by Frank Luntz’s focus group, a host of bloggers and pundits such as Politco.com’s Roger Simon:
Sarah Palin was supposed to fall off the stage at her vice presidential debate Thursday evening. Instead, she ended up dominating it.
She not only kept Joe Biden on the defensive for much of the debate, she not only repeatedly attacked Barack Obama, but she looked like she was enjoying herself while doing it.
Steven Keller, Director of the George Washington University Debate Team and an Assistant Professor of Media and Public Affairs at GWU, said:
“I thought Sarah Palin hit a grand slam to right field. It was an excellent debate. Joe Biden did a fine job, but Sarah Palin exceeded expectations by a 100 miles with her poise, her self-confidence and her ability to stay even with Joe Biden all the way.”
With each new column she produces taking her further around the bend, it’s clear to many, even her friends, that Kathleen Parker is the one who’s “not quite there.”
And so the debate will rage on unless Caroline Kennedy somehow doesn’t get a free ticket to the Senate for at least two years. But those who have attacked Gov. Palin’s experience, intellect and abilities and who also want to see another Kennedy representing New York on Capitol Hill can hide neither their hypocrisy nor the emptiness of their arguments against Sarah Palin.
- JP

Friday, December 19, 2008

What Will Santa Do?

The Mayor will like this picture.
Palin got blamed for everything else why not add one more. 

GOP To Study Comeback

The GOP wants to make a comeback and have assembled a team to study just how to do that. A worthwhile idea indeed, to be prepared such as having a message that resonates with the voters, having the mechanics and tools to run campaigns and it would be great to identify partners who could assist. The Democrats have a very strong ally in the Working Families Party, but the GOP should pull up short of being sell outs to any special interest like the Democrats. Having said all this, the GOP should be prepared, thus far the Democrats have simply demonstrated they are unable to lead, Spitzer, Hevesi and Malcolm Smith and now the proposed budget, which moves Paterson into the questionable category.

Also, highlighted below are some notables for the North Country; Ron Robbins, Fran Sullivan former Assembly member from Oswego and Tony Casale former Assembly member and roommate of the late H. Robert Nortz.

(Hat tip to LoHud for the lift)

New York State Republicans are putting together a commission to put them back on the political map. Committee Chairman Joseph Mondello today announced the creation of a strategic planing commission to develop strategies “and develop a forward-looking blueprint” for the party. The commission will shape a path to make the GOP competitive in the state, according to an announcement. Andrew Eristoff will serve as the commission’s chair.

“Today, our party’s ongoing rebuilding efforts will take a new and significant step forward toward a stronger, more vibrant future,” Mondello said in a statement. “I’ve asked this commission to do a thorough and independent assessment of the best strategies and techniques to provide a gameplan for moving our party forward. I am confident that this talented group of individuals will provide the quality research, analysis, and proposals we need to be successful.”

Much of this group will focus on communications and the “nuts-and-bolts of building a vital and competitive state party,” like fundraising, candidate recruitment, technology and support, Eristoff said.

Members of the commission include:
Thomas J. Basile, President, Empire Solutions Consulting
Abigail Cable, Treasurer, NYS College Republicans; President, Union College Republicans
Anthony J. Casale, former Member, New York State Assembly
Christopher N. Cox, former New York Executive Director, McCain 2008
Thomas E. L. Dewey, Partner, Dewey Pegno & Kramarsky
Harold E. Doley III, Principal, The Lugano Group Incorporated
Christopher P. Dziedzic, Chair, New York State Young Republicans
Andrew S. Eristoff, Chair
Lolita K. Jackson, Former President, Metropolitan Republican Club
Lynn Krogh, President, New York City Young Republicans
Nicholas Langworthy, Former Executive Director, Erie County Republican Committee
Gary J. Lavine, Attorney
Raymond P. Martinez, Former Commissioner, New York State Department of Motor Vehicles
Rebecca M. Marino, Secretary, New York State Republican Committee
Meyers Mermel, CEO, Mermel & McLain
Patrick M. Murphy, Former President, New York City Log Cabin Republicans
Juan Carlos “J.C.” Polanco, Commissioner, New York City Board of Elections
Ron Robbins, North Harbor Dairy, Former NYS Director for USDA Farm Services
Fran Sullivan, Former Member, New York State Assembly
Charles J. Urstadt, Chairman, Urstadt Biddle Properties

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Hello, School Tax Increase!


Here is the school aid run for Jefferson County extracted from the executive budget proposal. If the Governor's budget remains close to intact then school districts in Jefferson County will see a reduction of base school aid and most likely every taxpayer will see an increase in school property taxes.

THIS IS WHY A CAP WAS REQUIRED!!

Not only will we get to pay the numerous tax increases proposed by the Governor but also we will pay extra in school taxes. So, when the Governor and legion of politicians talk about shared sacrifice and pain, there will only be sacrifice of taxpayer's hard earned money and pain to them.

Click on it to view.


Wednesday, December 17, 2008

The First Union Blowback.

The first "not me" ad is out by 1199 SEIU, with the don't touch us, tax him attitude!

Pot Calling the Kettle

The Working Families Party, who drapes New York in their tax and spend rhetoric and backs politicians with the expectance that they will behave in the same manner had this to say about the New York State budget.
"In this budget there's a tax on almost everything. Drinking, smoking, driving, food, health care, going to the movies, downloading music, clothes and haircuts. In total, it's billions in regressive taxes - "nuisance taxes" - that don't add up to a sensible approach."
If the Working Families Party can possibly think this budget taxes too much, then what does average taxpayer think? 

They have a major investment in Aubertine, et al in the Senate, lets see how much it pays them back.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

This Says It All

- John Riley - Spin Cycle Blog

"Sheldon Silver already supports taxing the "rich" (who may be defined as people making $150K). With Senate Republicans non-players if the Dems can get their act together, and Paterson going wobbly before negotiations even start, it seems pretty clear that New York will revert to form:

It's a state run by politicians that don't want to cross big unions, who know how to manipulate public opinion and identify their sinecures with the public interest. So, it's always easier to raise taxes, ignore effects on the economy, make taxpayers who are already paying the most in the nation pay even more for their mediocre schools and mediocre health care system, and pretend that the protecters of the status quo are "progressives" defending "working families."

New Taxes and More New Taxes

Our fiscally restrainted Governor is proposing a slew of new taxes, 88 of them.

Here is a lift from Cap Confidential blog listing some of the newbees.

– Fat tax on sugared soda
– SUNY tuition hike
– Sales tax on cable and satellite TV and radio
– Repeal the sales tax cap on fuel
– Higher beer and wine taxes
– Higher cigar taxes
– Increase auto rental tax
– Higher luxury good sales tax
– Increase civil service exam fees
– Local fee for hiring a public retiree
– Increase driver license and registration (That one, according to the budget estimate is fairly moderate, perhaps Paterson has learned from other states, I believe steep fee increases has done some damage to politicians in other states)
– A bad check fee
– Timothy’s law insurance assessment
– Automated speed enforcement cameras and higher “vehicle safety fines”
– Here’s a head scratcher: “Establish Explosives Fees and Penalties”
– Establish an early intervention parent fee
– Horse entrance fee


I Love New York just means you pay more for it year after year.

Pick Me!

Caroline Kennedy made it official she is in the hunt for the Senate seat being vacated by Clinton.

Will Governor Paterson succumb to the Kennedy name pressure even through she has never served a day in public office? Caroline never even liked the public attention until recently, is that a compatible persona for a Senator?

Finally, she was an early backer of 'Bam, which did not sit well with the Clinton's. Is that playing against her behind the scenes, or is Hil burying the hatchet someplace other than Caroline's back?

Monday, December 15, 2008

Tax and Spend the Government Way!

E. J McMahon wrote today, 
"the late U.S. Sen. Russell Long observed, the default position of most Americans is “don’t tax me, don’t tax thee, tax that fellow behind the tree.”
The Working Families Party, who caims most of the credit for flipping the New York State Senate to Democrat control (at least they hope) and was instrumental in both Aubertine victories, wants New York Legislators to pay close attention to their poll.

Their poll released today claims New Yorkers support increasing taxes on higher wage earners and a continuance on the merry way of government spending for schools and medicaid programs. Just to be clear, those are likely two of three possible areas to make any meaningful cuts, the other would be state employment and you can bet they will oppose that move as well.

So, WFP, through an absurd poll that does not address any reduction in spending without fear mongering attached to it, endorses continued spending and taxing people with no proposal for cuts.

This is a recipe for disaster, sooner or later without spending cuts New York State government will have to tax every working person in order to maintain their spending habits. Many S corporation (small business) business folks are likely to be swept up in this gimmick between their earnings and that of their businesses. 

Face it, with people like this in control of state government there will be no spending cuts and only increases in taxes and fees, for proof turn to NY Daily Balance as they address Paterson's "fat tax."


The last person out of New York, please turn the lights off.

Final Chapter Written

This will fall in the "follow up" category from the senate campaign of 2008. One of the hot button issues was the A.L. Memorial Hospital and an advertisement by Darrel Aubertine stating he saved over 200 jobs. The topic created considerable back and forth between the two campaigns.

The final chapter is written for the hospital and it spells out an orderly closure plan. The closure plan calls for an incremental reduction in beds from March until they cease accepting inpatient admissions on June 15, 2009.

June 16, 2009 forward the facility will no longer be a hospital and it will convert to an outpatient clinic.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Where Will This Go

There is a journalist somewhere working diligently to find stronger ties between Hot Rod and PEBO. This seat for sale scandal surrounding the Guv may not be the PEBO connection they are looking for, but Chicago politics will continue to experience an increased level of scrutiny. 

Monroerising.com had a good post on Hot Rod today. Read it here

Saturday, December 13, 2008

NYS Senate Leadership Watch

Malcolm Smith must be smoking something! The two most cited potential Republican defectors are Alesi and Robach, both of whom have given assurances -- publicly -- that they are solid in the GOP camp and Dean Skelos put out a statement the other day confirming he has support of the entire conference.

By most accounts, the meeting in New York City yesterday was a bust, and not well attended. Some of the upstate 5 were iced in, while the Gang of 3 was iced out. Supposed coup leader Klein wasn't there.

It's pretty clear that Malcolm Smith does not have a degree in math as they are not any closer to the votes needed to take the majority and no one has the votes to take Smith out. That's the real story of the Gang of Three.

This conference is dysfunction personified, no unity and a lot of personal animosity. Incompetent of any leadership that was entrusted to them. They're clearly not ready for the task ahead.

The danger of all this is that, because nature abhors a leadership vacuum, Shelly steps in and takes de facto control of the entire Legislature AND the 2nd floor!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Reforming Local Government

New York is massive in its scope of local government with over 10,000 loca government units. Click on the link for an interactive map by county of local government units.

Brought to you by handy Andy Cuomo. 


Click Here

Who Did What Right

These are the lawmakers who did the right thing and voted against the auto makers bailout.


Democrats Voting No
Baucus, Mont.    Lincoln, Ark.    Reid, Nev.    Tester, Mont.
Republicans Voting No
Allard, Colo.    Barrasso, Wyo.    Bennett, Utah    Bunning, Ky.    Burr, N.C.    Chambliss, Ga.    Coburn, Okla.    Cochran, Miss.    Coleman, Minn.    Corker, Tenn.    Crapo, Idaho;     DeMint, S.C.    Ensign, Nev. 
Enzi, Wyo.    Grassley, Iowa;    Gregg, N.H.    Hatch, Utah;    Hutchison, Texas;    Inhofe, Okla.    Isakson, Ga.    Kyl, Ariz.    Martinez, Fla.    McCain, Ariz.    McConnell, Ky.    Murkowski, Alaska;     Roberts, Kan.    Sessions, Ala.    Shelby, Ala.    Thune, S.D.    Vitter, La.    Wicker, Miss.    

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Malcolm Smith's Leadership Abilities Are Questionable

Working for Senator Malcolm Smith can be hazardous.

Malcolm Smith has not had a banner week. His leadership battle continues after a deal he botched and he is struggling with the press as well.

He abruptly departed a press conference earlier in the week after announcing committee chairs, pointing to his watch and not taking questions on his way out the door.

He has had two different incidents with the press, the other when he made a remark at a golf tournament to lobbyist about getting their money in early like an IPO.

Right after that remark he canned the press director and this week he showed another member of his press team the door.

Maybe someday it will click in someone's mind, that Smith's leadership abilities are deficient.  



Another Blog Listing

P-IV has been picked up and linked to by yet another blog. This time P-IV has been linked by Monroe Rising, written in Monroe County (Rochester).

Therefore, we will return the favor and they are now listed on P-IV.

That now ups P-IV listings to the Niagara region, Albany and Rochester.

Jay - Pay Close Attention

Jay Matteson, Jefferson County Ag Coordinator, who generally does a good job but it is possible that he exist to sit around and pepper people with emails throughout day, just "flashed" everyone with this announcement.

Hey Jay, if you are paying close attention to New York State politics you might be a bit premature on this one, just like Senate Minority Leader Malcolm Smith (who probably can't even spell Agriculture) was when he announced Darrel as chairman.

Jefferson County Agricultrual News Flash Network
a service of the Jefferson County Agricultural Development Corporation
 
 
Senator Darrel Aubertine, Chairman of the NYS Senate Committee on Agriculture, on the Home Grown Show Tomorrow

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Deal is D.O.A., Smith is Close

The deal with the three renegade dissidents better known as the Gang of Three appears dead. The deal is so dead it would be surprising if the Democrats do not remain in the minority as the rhetoric from both sides of the food fight is getting intense.

Malcolm Smith's leadership position is twisting in the wind caused mostly by his own doing. It is too late for Smith to attempt to take a principled position by saying he is breaking off the talks and the Democrats are better off in the minority when he already cut a deal with the G.O.T. then publicly denigrated the deal that was cut with Gov. Paterson in the room.
Smith said -
“We are suspending negotiations, effective immediately, because to do otherwise would reduce our moral standing and the long-term Senate Democratic commitment to reform and to change. We believe that ultimately, we must do what is right for the people of the State of New York. Furthermore, real reform cannot and should not ever include limiting the civil rights of any New Yorkers. Those issues must be part of the legislative process."
That latter part of that statement by Smith refers to the deal cut with Diaz to keep the issue of legalizing gay marriage off the agenda. Now after the deal that Smith cut is dead, he wants to spin it out there that he is a civil rights hero.

Gov Paterson was at the table when the deal was cut and Smith is leaving Paterson hanging and he is starting WW III between two factions - Hispanics and African Americans. Paterson cannot afford the loss of the Hispanic community for his own re-election. The bottom line is that Smith could not close the deal with the balance of the conference after he made the deals with the three.

Smith's leadership position is on life support.

Whether or not Smith should have cut the deal with the three to begin with is another debate, but regardless, he did and then he botched the deal.

Meanwhile, back at the rance the real issue of governing New York State still remains, New York is facing a projected $12.5 billion (and growing) deficit and the Democrats are moving no closer to solving the people's problems. Are the Senate Democrats just demonstrating they cannot handle the leadership role properly without all these distractions?

The Mac Gets It

Rep. John McHugh of New York won the House Republican Steering Committee's nod to become the ranking Republican on the House Armed Services Committee, replacing retiring Rep. Duncan Hunter of California, GOP aides say.

McHugh was chosen over fellow committee members Roscoe Bartlett of Maryland and Mac Thornberry of Texas.

The full House Republican Conference was expected to follow suit and make the steering committee's recommendation official.
 
(Lifted from The Crypt)

Crystal Clear

It is becoming crystal clear why DD has shut down his blog and let the remains get picked up by the party poo-bahs for some touchy, feely soft talk.

They have no one left to fire their bullets toward. The Democrats are the end all, be all in government, responsible for every decision, therefore, if any decision goes bad (likely to occur) they only have to turn the gun on themselves.

So, here is a case in point for self-inflicted stupidity.

Governor David Paterson's appalling comment reported on Politico, see it here.
Paterson's real goal, he said, is to follow in Barack Obama's footsteps and be president of the United States, because: "Once you go black, you don't go back." 
If a Republican (not even considering the race of the Republican) would have made such a remark, they would be ridden out of town on a train. DD would never had let a remark like that pass with out a comment.

But, not these days, DD is dead!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Good Post Abay.com!

The picture is priceless and the post is just as good.

Here is the picture and click here for the post

Can or Will NYS Senate Democrats Repeat 1964-65?

Can Malcolm Smith and Company manage their leadership role better than the 1964-65 Democratic majority that mismanaged their time in the majority, which resulted in a brief 9 month time as majority?

The infighting this year is reminiscent of the 1964-65 era and the conditions are eerily similar, then Lyndon Johnson was swept into office in a landslide victory just like Obama this year. Robert F Kennedy, who much like Hillary Clinton being referred to as a "carpetbagger," was Senator.  

The current Minority Leader of the Senate Democrats was Joseph Zaretski, who aspired to be Majority Leader, but Kennedy and the state Democratic Chair William McKeon had a different opinion.

The battle ensued between factions aligned with Kennedy-McKeon who backed Julian Erway for Majority Leader while a faction organized by then New York City Mayor Robert Wagner back Zaretski.

Erway gained the support of 19 out of the 33 Democratic Senators while Zaretski had the support of 14, but four Senators refused to unite behind one person, therefore neither had the votes needed to become Majority Leader. 

In January, the Senate was gaveled to order, but several attempts were made to rectify the leadership issue but to no avail. Therefore, the Senate had no president pro temp and they could not organize and conduct business.

The situation was finally resolved on February 3rd when Republican Governor Nelson Rockefeller stepped in and delivered 25 GOP Senators who voted for Zaretski. The voters had grown tired of the dysfunction by then and the Democrats lost the majority in the next election.

Malcolm Smith is experiencing the same tenuous situation this year and has all he can do to hold a fragile majority together. This year has all the makings of a 64-65 repeat.

If they need a history lesson on it, they should look to none other than an expert - Alan Hevesi, who did his doctoral dissertation on the issue.

A Picture Is Worth A Thousand Words

 
This picture has been circulating around the internet since last week. It is Obama's Director of Speech Writing Jon Favreau groping a card board cut out of the Hil. As well as Bam's transition is going, they may have overlooked vetting a staff member here or there. Add your caption!

Monday, December 8, 2008

Attention Wal-Mart Shoppers

McCain got their attention and won that segment of the electorate this year. Zogby is reporting McCain won over Wal-Mart shoppers by a margin of 17 points. McCain might have won the hearts of Wal-Mart but Obama polled better with other retail shoppers.


McCain won:
Wal-Mart
Sears
Kohl's

Obama won:
Target
Macy's
Costco
JC Penney
Nieman Marcus
Bloomingdale's
Marshall's

Perhaps Republican's should fine tune their message to match the shopper's profile.


Read the report here

Newspaper Responds "No Comment"

It is quite a contradictory eye opening, head twisting move when a newspaper responds with "no comment," but that is just what the Miami Herald did this weekend.

Are newspaper suppose to be forthcoming about news?

The newspaper world was rocked again this weekend with the announcements of the Chicago Trib going into chapter 11 bankruptcy and the Miami Herald being put up for sale.

Elaine Lintecum, the treasurer for The McClatchy Co., owners of the Miami Herald, responded to a reporter, “We do not comment on market rumors.”

Sunday, December 7, 2008

NYS Senate Democrats

The Gang of Three in the New York State Senate have the Democrats so twisted up they do not know if they are coming or going and the in-fighting has ramped up.

Minority Leader Malcolm Smith, who hopes to become Majority Leader (well sort of) with the Gang of Three's help has apparently inked a deal with the three little devils. Here is the deal that Smith agreed to; Kruger will chair a souped up Senate Finance Committee, Senator-elect Pedro Espada Jr. will be majority leader, Smith will be Temporary President of the Senate and keeping a gay marriage bill off the floor.

The one issue to this deal is that there really is no Majority Leader according to the state constitution, the actual title is Temporary President of the Senate.
 
 § 9. A majority of each house shall constitute a quorum to do business.
  Each house shall determine the rules of its own proceedings, and be the
  judge of the elections, returns and qualifications of its own members;
  shall choose its own officers; and the senate shall choose a temporary
  president and the assembly shall choose a speaker.


The other issue is the deal between the Gang of Three and Malcolm have the rest of the conference, the gang of 28, a bit peeved that the Gang of Three is the tail wagging the dog and they have been rewarded with so much power. This is like watching a circular firing squad and they have not even approached governing yet!

NY Daily Balance has a different perspective on the issue and also reports on the balance of power shift in New York State even down to the committee chair level, read it here.

Friday, December 5, 2008

Blog Updates

Danger Democrat is back with a "new and improved (?)" branding. Question mark on the improved part. The new name is Jefferson Democrat and the emphasis is more toward a kum-bi-ah.

Posted is a "Discover the Meaning" initiative by the Jefferson Democratic party, pardon me for a moment..."gimmick"... there I got it out of my system! Is this the same party where the Senator just filed a campaign finance report showing he paid "volunteers" for a get out the vote effort? Yes, take a look here, they want to volunteer in the community while paying nearly $30,000 for an effort to get out the vote.

And new to the blog scene is North Country Public Radio with "The In Box." One of the reporters at NPR is an all around good. David Sommerstein is an even handed reporter, who is fair to have a conversation with whether or not opinions differ on a subject, he will always give you a fair report.

 

Thursday, December 4, 2008

God's Peace Be With Him

In Memory of Robert Nortz
Former Assembyman and beloved public servant H. Robert Nortz has passed away.

May he rest in peace. He was respected and love by many!

Please leave your condolence messages.

He was an avid reader and a joy to visit with and talk politics. He will undoubtedly be missed by so many people on both sides of the aisle. PIV had to post early in the morning, because he repeatedly told me that he got up at 5:30 and logged on to read, therefore we always attempted to have morning reading ready for Bob. Bob attended Lowville Academy school with my mother. As a child, I always looked forward to the Nortz Christmas card that faithfully arrived annually. The Nortz family has deep roots with my family, back to his days when he was referred to as Tubber.

R.I.P. Bob     


Tributes To Bob Nortz

If anyone wishes to sign there tributes or at least indicate if whether or not you want them posted I am using this section for tributes to the Bob.

He always invited me on his Fall boat cruise and I don't think I missed very many over all the years - maybe 1 or 2, and I always visited with him when I was in Albany. I last spoke with him the end of September during Dave Renzi's campaign. We had a nice, long conversation.

I have many photographs and many happy memories. He was a true gentleman, and the true patriarch of the North Country GOP, IMO. There are few like him today.

From a "thank you" note from Bob 10/27/2000:

"Think where man's glory most begins and ends. And say my glory was I had such friends"

Wm. Yeats

Rest in peace, my friend.
(Written by Mike Gillette)
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I knew Bob Nortz quite well - but from the opposite political aisle.

Many times I was around him and others when "candidates or incumbents spoke in public."

He always had a joke that warmed up the crowd.

I last met and spoke to Bob and his bride at the NSIL in October when McHugh debated Oot - we spoke for a few minutes and I asked him how he was and he flashed that smile and said, "I'm fine, thanks for asking." He hid his illness quite well -- he'll be missed.

RIP - Bob Nortz.

A friend from the other side of the political who always respected you.

~ dmf
  (Written by Dan Francis)
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I met Mr. Nortz for the first time when I was in my late teens. He took a couple of minutes to talk to a teenage kid about politics and how important it was to belong to a party. That really hit home with me, not so much the politics but the time he gave me. He was a man that would shake your hand and look you in the eyes. The last six months Mr. Nortz was deeply involved in my campaign for State Assembly. He never missed a meeting and always instilled passion and dedication. I had the pleasure of introducing Mr. Nortz at the Jefferson County Annual Dinner at Bonnie Castle in October. He took the podium and stole the show. I will cherish that honor for the rest of my life. It’s not so much that the North Country has lost a great Leader, but the North Country has lost a True Friend……..Farewell Mentor …God bless you and your family.
Bobby Cantwell (Written by Bobby Cantwell)




Sound Off!

What an interesting week in Jefferson County, one week and two issues that could viewed similarly or from entirely different perspectives.

First, the county is poised to renew the trail coordinator position and associated expenses for $65K. It is a position that has a targeted constituency of outdoor recreational people it serves and those folks obviously see the merit and understand the work being accomplish. But, there are some folks whom are not served by the position that are crying foul and calling this a frivolous expense or ineffective position. 

Then, JCC unveils a new logo and marketing campaign this week to the tune of $60K. Some of the very same people who are howling about the trail coordinator position renewal are silently looking the other way on this expense.  What gives?

So, time for you folks to sound off...what are your thoughts on either of these issues, supportive or not so supportive, let the fur fly! 

By the way, I did not view the new logo as the clock tower and arch, I viewed it as follows.



Another Blog, Another Link

Political IV is pleased that links are being established around the state. The new link to PIV comes from Niagara Times, which covers state politics as well as western New York politics.

This latest addition listing comes on the heels of being listed on a new blog NY Daily Balance, which appears to be strictly state politics covered from the capital region.

PIV does not know either of these authors, but sees a trend occurring of a statewide network.

PIV has reciprocated by listing both of these blogs.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Jefferson County Consolidated School System

The New York State Commission on Property Tax Relief final report recommended a force merger for schools with a student body of less than 1,000 and gave the State Education Department the power to merge districts with a population under 2,000.

How does that change Jefferson County?

Well here are the schools and the student body size. The schools ripe for merger are highlighted.

Alexandria Central  654
Belleville-Henderson 531
Carthage    3,022
General Brown 1,585
Indian River 3,557
La Fargeville 568
Lyme 351
Sackets Harbor 482
South Jefferson 2,027
Thousand Islands 1,196
Watertown   4,590 

It could potentially reduce the number of school systems in Jefferson County from 11 to 4. Interestingly even a combined Lyme and LaFargeville system would still be forced to merge yet again under this report's recommendation.

Perhaps a county with five school systems; north, south, east, west and central might even encourage local government to follow suit and merge in the same fashion, just imagine what that would look like, all that bureaucracy gone!

Maybe even a small step forward and merge administrative functions. If Watertown High School can serve 4,590 students with a similar administration as that of a much smaller school, than there is a lot of room for efficiency. The number of students does not necessarily drive the size of the administration, but the number of districts do! 
 

Another Always Hillary First Moment

Always Hillary, Alway First! That is her mindset and she never fails to think of her self and her career first, again before the residents of New York, who are nothing more than her running boards in life.

The political system is built on seniority, hence why she is referred to as the junior senator. The institution is run on this principle from committee assignments to office location.

The next SoS has an opportunity for once to put the residents she serves ahead of her own personal interest, and resign immediate, which will allow the Governor to put someone in place before the next Congress begins with a freshman class of Senators and allow the new Senator from New York to have a slight edge in senority.

But, what does the Hil do...always Hillary first, she will stay on through her confirmation, read here.

Is she worried she will not be confirmed?

Ah New York, we just cannot get enough of her selfishness, and her self celebrity status.
 

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Fred Gets His Point Of View

This is a little lengthy, around 8 minutes, but Fred does a nice job mocking the government's solution to the economic woes.

Bam Administration

Monday, December 1, 2008

Jefferson County School District (?)

The final report of the New York State Commission on Property Tax Relief was issued today, see here.

Page 52 and 53 discusses too many small fragmented school districts and the report maps out small districts that are perhaps ripe for consolidation, which includes a great portion of Jefferson County. The report uses Florida's system of country wide school districts as well as Maryland, North Carolina and Virginia as comparisons.

What do the local state representatives: Aubertine, Scozzafava and Jenne-Russell think about school consolidation and this report. Should they endorse the plan and take the "NIMBY" approach?

Lip Service

The big announcement airs today with Bam "o"nnouncing Hil as Secretary (of State). Thus, it will end the 8 years of lip service to New York residents from the Clintons about how much they cared for this great state.

It has always been Hillary first in her world and who or what can be used to her advantage. At a time when New York is at one of the deepest crisis in the state's history she had the opportunity to chair the powerful Appropriations Committee. She, along with Charlie Rangel, who is chair of the House Ways and Means, together would have been there to pump billions of dollars into New York. 

Hillary has been paying lip service to New York for 10 years, since her fictitious listening tour, so she could become Senator, then run for President and now after her failed presidential run it is onto to Secretary of State.

No wonder the first lady of Arkansas cheered the Chicago Cubs, while living in Washington and having a residence in New York. 

Good Bye!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Gov to Schools

The following is a letter from the Governor to schools, I have highlighted some interesting points in the letter. Notice where the Governor tips his hand and talks about his 10% reduction in state agencies and how local folks should prepare for a "similar approach."

Schools and local governments have time to prepare manageable cuts in a organized fashion, versus the chaotic nature of crisis cuts. The main stream media should be covering this story to find out how they are preparing and what proposed cuts will look like.


Dear School Board Presidents and District Superintendents,

New York is facing a historic fiscal crisis. Over the next four years, we must close a record $47 billion deficit. Given the magnitude of this problem, every area of State spending, including education, will have to experience reductions.

I have been voicing my concerns about the impact of the current economic downturn on our State finances since the day I took office. In August, I convened the Legislature for a special session, during which we worked together to enact $1 billion of reductions over two years. At the time, schools were held harmless to recognize the impending beginning of the school year.

By October, the economic downturn had become so severe that no area of the budget could be exempt from reductions. As such, on November 12, I proposed an $836 million mid-year reduction in aid to school districts for 2008-09. This proposal would have provided most, though not all, districts with increased funding from last year, and would have still allowed overall School Aid to increase by 16 percent over the last two years. However, at last week’s special session, the Legislature did not act. While school aid reductions remain on the table, it is unlikely the Legislature will consider them any time soon. Therefore, we would be well into the final quarter of our fiscal year and even further into the school year before any action would likely occur. Unfortunately, this timing renders the proposal impractical for this fiscal year and I am withdrawing it. However, I will put forward further school aid reductions in the early budget that I will deliver in three weeks.

As I have said repeatedly, delaying action only makes our budget problems more difficult and painful to solve and we cannot solve our budget problems fairly without reductions in every area of spending. Fiscal management is all about making hard, painful decisions, and the rejection of a mid-year School Aid reduction by the Legislature means that deeper declines in funding for school districts will now be necessary in 2009-10 to ensure a balanced budget.

This decision to propose any reductions in education spending was a difficult one for me personally. In my time as a State senator, I had been one of the most vocal supporters in the Legislature of increased funding for school districts. But the unfortunate reality of our current, unprecedented fiscal crisis is that we will have to make numerous tough choices.

Next year, total School Aid is projected to increase by 8.8 percent or $1.9 billion. During one of the greatest fiscal crisis in our State’s history, that is a level of funding we simply cannot afford given that School Aid represents more than one-third of the State’s General Fund spending.

On December 16, my Executive Budget proposal to the Legislature will detail the level of support we can afford to provide for School Aid. But I wanted to write to you today to make my intentions regarding School Aid clear. This will allow you to begin planning for your fiscal futures more than seven months in advance of the 2009-10 school year which begins on July 1, 2009.

I acknowledge that your costs are rising, but I believe all levels of government must reduce spending. This year, I have reduced State agency spending by more than 10 percent. In this unprecedented fiscal crisis, school districts, like all levels of government, will have to take a similar approach and find ways to reduce costs and improve the efficiency of their operations on behalf of taxpayers.

Additionally, it is important that these necessary reductions are analyzed in their proper context. No single fiscal year’s budget should be viewed in isolation. Over the last five years, School Aid has increased by 48 percent. Over the last two years alone, it has increased by over 20 percent. A substantial commitment to education funding will remain even after next year’s reductions

I invite you to join me as partners serving our taxpayers. Perhaps this crisis presents an invaluable opportunity for us to improve the structure of our educational system and how it is financed. I welcome any suggestions you may have.

I know that the months and years ahead will be difficult. But I look forward to your help and cooperation in addressing our State’s fiscal crisis. I know that together we can weather this storm and help get New York’s fiscal house in order.

Sincerely,

David A. Paterson
Governor of the State of New York

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Just How Resolute Are The Gang Of Three

Senator Carl Kruger, one of the Gang of Three told the Daily News Ken Lovett:

"We're weeks - maybe months - away from any kind of agreement" on who will lead the state Senate.

Senators Skelos and Smith Talk Turkey W/ Diaz

Senator Ruben Diaz, one of the infamous Gang of Three, has invited Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos and current Senate Minority Leader Malcolm Smith to his Thanksgiving celebration today.

The annual celebration includes $15 food vouchers handed out to 2,000 senior citizens.

Of course they will attend, both are wooing the Gang of Three in order to gain the majority.

How cozy will that be?

Schumer Steps Down

He has firmly secured one of his legacies and now he is stepping aside as the chair of the DSCC.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Bertha Lewis - What Unity?

Meet Bertha Lewis, who is Working Families Party co-chair and chief organizer for ACORN.

The Working Families Party is taking credit for sweeping the New York Senate to the Democrats and evident by Senator Aubertine's close association with the WFP support in his career and campaigns.

She made the following comment in speaking about a possible chairmanship for one of the Gang of Three.

She accused Senator Carl Kruger of "palling around with Republican terrorists." 

How is that comment?

It is extremely distasteful and demonstrates just how people like her view differing opinions and leaves no doubt they are close minded to opposing view points in governing.

Sad!

NYS Senate Job Creation Plan

The Senate Republicans unvieiled a job creation plan for New York, here are the highlights.

  • Cut taxes on small businesses in half and eliminate business taxes for small manufacturers;
  • Create new tax credits tied to job creation and job training by manufacturers;
  • Make reforms to the Empire Zone program to increase accountability to ensure that companies receiving benefits create high-paying jobs;
  • Help small businesses obtain loans to grow;
  • Reduce health insurance costs for small businesses;
  • Expand tax credits for investments by emerging technology businesses;
  • Provide low cost student loans and create a tax credit program for students who go to college in New York and stay in New York;
  • Eliminate state regulations, red tape and paperwork; and
  • Give local governments greater authority to provide tax breaks for community and neighborhood revitalization projects; 
Read the details of the plan here

Want Input On RNC- Tex 2 Steele

If you want to give your input on the future direction of the Republican National Committee, then one of the three candidates to lead the party wants you to text it to him.


Michael Steele for RNC Chairman website is set up and he wants you ideas for the future of the party and the ideas can either be sent via video or text message.

Video Instructions:
Grassroots Video InstructionsIf you plan on submitting a video, read the following guidelines and suggestions before you begin filming:
  • Limit videos to 1 minute or less.
  • Make sure your video communicates a clear message. Gather your thoughts prior to filming and practice if necessary.
  • Be unique. We are looking for videos that find creative ways to share ideas.
  • Have a positive message about Michael Steele and the future of the Republican Party. Videos that attack other candidates will not be accepted.
  • Be personable, friendly and exciting. We are looking for videos that are fun to watch!
  • All videos should be family friendly. Each video will be reviewed by the staff prior to posting.
  •  Your video can be uploaded on YouTube and configured to allow for sharing with comments and video rating both turned off.
  • Or you can embed your videos on our site by registering here. Then embed your video in the comments section below. 
Text Instructions:


Do you have a great new idea for the future of the Republican Party or just think there is room for improvement?  Now you can text your ideas directly to Michael Steele.  Text Steele to 66937 today!

              To send a text simply follow these steps:
              1 - Select messages on your cell phone
              2 - Dial the Short Code 66937
              3 - Enter Message "Steele" and send
              4 - You will then receive a return message confirming your registration.  Just repy back - Y.
              5 - You are now able to text your ideas to the Steele website.  To do that -
                                 - Select Message and dial the short code 66937
                                 - Start your message with @Steele (and then text in your thoughts)

Stuff The Turkey

John Cole, The Scranton Times-Tribune

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Youngest Member of Congress

He was elected, as a write in candidate, to the Peoria School Board of Education at age 19.
He earned a four year degree in Finance in just two years.
He unseated a 8 term Democrat in a heavily Democratic district for State Representative.
He was reelected as a Republican in a district that routinely voted 60% Democrat.
He was simultaneously a member of the school and Illinois State Representative at age 23.
He built the Republican party around him by recruiting people for county boards, city councils and committee.

He was just elected Member of Congress, House of Representatives, 18th District, Illinois.

The youngest Member of Congress is Aaron Schock.

Born in 1981.

View his election website - here

He spoke at the RNC, probably will not be the last time.


Saturday, November 22, 2008

Gang of Three Continued

The Gang of Three met yesterday in New York City, while there are no updates from the meeting here is some speculation.

Senator Ruben Diaz, D-Bronx will defect from the Gang of Three. Senate Minority Leader Malcolm Smith will come to the conclusion that he does not have the votes in his conference for gay marriage and he will cede that point of contention to Diaz. This move will no doubt publicly weaken Malcolm Smith more than he already is by his conveyance of his street style persona.

Senator Carl Kruger along with Former Senator and now Senator Elect Pedro Espada are in this stalemate for the long haul. They appeared to be resolute in their belief that they will not support Malcolm Smith or Dean Skelos.

Here is what Kruger had to say about the special session.
"I don't approve of the way Skelos handled himself or Malcolm," the senator continued. "Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, he comes to the table with a lifetime of experience...In this particular case, if he saw the Senate was dysfunctional, then the Assembly could have passed a bill and thrown it at the Senate."
"Waiting for Dean Skelos and Malcolm Smith to strip to the waist and duel on State Street is not the way of governing."

The conference that blinks first and dumps their leader will win the majority, for the Republicans, their choice is Tom Libous, pictured above on the left with Dean Skelos and the Democrats choice is Jeff Klein.

The Democrats need every one of their 32 members for their majority vote to avoid a tie. Even if Diaz leaves the Gang of Three the vote count is 30-30-2, currently vote count is GOP 30, Democrats 29 and Gang 3.

If they remain a cohesive Gang of Three they will control all the legislation that moves through the New York State Legislature.  

CBS Refusal

CBS refused to air this ad saying "viewers would be confused by its contents" with the news programing, maybe CBS should review the style of news reporting.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Barack Obama Elementary

An elementary school on Long Island has already named the school after Barack Obama. Now, there are a lot of schools named after former Presidents, key word is former, but this may be the first to be named after a President-elect. They better hope his Presidency is true to promise and that it does not go down in flames for one reason or another.

Read the story here 

R.I.P. - DD?

Antithesis blog Danger Democrat has gone dark all of a sudden. The blog posts page has been scrubbed with only the archives left, it is like Ted went into a raging fit, but he states he is just on hiatus.

  1. PIV certainly hopes all is well over there.
  2. How long will it last?
  3. Is DD re-inventing himself, as he has done before?
  4. Did the white knight blog PIV finally slay the dragon blog? (don't get excited folks, just joking)
  5. PIV understands a hiatus, maintaining a blog of commentary and information passing can be a lot of work. It involves reviewing and briefing over 200+ headlines and stories every day looking for information to pass along. 

Survey Says - More Conservative GOP

A survey by Gallup shows GOP registrants want to be more conservative, while Independents are 50-50 split between more conservative and less conservative; is that enough to win elections? In the cycle of politics the party that dominates generally overreaches by driving hard right or left, which drives the independent voters in the middle to the other side. Is moving the base farther right the answer for the GOP? How about just sound fiscal management and common sense moderate social policies for the answer.

Mayor Graham's Pick For 2012

Mayor Graham's horse moose for the 2012 race.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Rightsizing NY Forum

This should be on the "must attend" list for local elected officials.

It is long past due to consolidate and right size government at all levels, and this is just not talking shared services that are thrown around, it should be consolidation and elimination of duplication. Locally there are a number of areas, for instance:
  • Real Property services like assessing, which is performed by the towns, county and city separately, 
  • Human Resource functions performed by the college, county and city separately, 
  • Highway functions   
  • Purchasing 
  • Insurance
  • Buildings and Grounds departments
  • Law enforcement
  • Planning
The local entities - schools and government just received a brief reprieve from crisis cuts, which should allow them to make planned cuts.

What are your thoughts for consolidation?


Vetting Hil

Mike Keefe The Denver Post

No So Frugal Governor

Frugal is a word the only applies to State agencies. The Albany Times Union is reporting that OGS purchased a 10x15 custom stitched rug for the Governor's mansion for the price of $21,000 and of course it was purchased from a New York City firm who contributed $8,000 to the Spitzer/Paterson campaign in 2006.

The rug was ordered the same week the second round of cuts to State agencies was ordered.

Read the story- Purchase of Turkish carpet take taxpayers for a ride?  here.

Editorial or Reporting?

While reading the Watertown Daily Times this morning, this paragraph appears in a story about the Governor's visit to Washington DC, written by Marc Heller.
Their visit also came on the heels of the Republican-led state Senate's failure in an emergency session to reach a deal to reduce New York's budget deficit, estimated at $1.5 billion this year. Mr. Smith vowed to make better progress next year when Democrats assume the majority there, as well.
Republican-led state Senate's failure in an emergency session? This appears without quotes, so a fair assumption is that any good reporter would follow that up with factual information to support such a statement, but he did not follow up.

Hmmm interesting, at last check there were 5 people in the meeting: Governor Paterson, Assembly Leaders Silver and Tedisco, Senate Leaders Skelos and Smith, that would be 3 Democrats and 2 Republicans! Yet, this is one persons fault, amazing.


Wednesday, November 19, 2008

No Flippin Here

Danger Democrat posted his holiday wish list for some Republicans to flip over to the Democrats in order to support Malcolm Smith's sagging chances of becoming Majority Leader. Here is one of the Republicans, Senator Alesi, whom DD labeled "flippin." DD may want to watch this video, Alesi is sounding very much like he is with Dean Skelos and the Republicans.



Leader's Debate

This is nothing more than a politic debate, not a policy debate. The Governor insists he has received nothing from the Senate Republicans, yet none of the other leaders have put forward any meaningful suggestions. Paterson's words continue to come back to haunt him.

"Charade" is the word Malcolm Smith uses, which applies to him for his lack of leadership.

Paterson did Smith a favor by not letting him respond to Skelos.

Uh Oh, No Ho Ho!

ABC is reporting there will be sharp cut backs...in gift giving.

51% of the respondents say they will spent less this year than last.

Read the story here

Skelos 2 - Paterson 0



Skelos out maneuvered the Governor at every turn this week and in doing so Skelos avoided all the trappings of the gang attack by Paterson, Malcolm Smith and Sheldon Silver. Governor David Paterson should walk away from this special session with a very special lesson - a better understanding that everyone has relevance in Albany and that he needs all the players to achieve his objectives.

Skelos' first score came when he called the bluff of Paterson's ill fated request that the Senate take up his legislation. Paterson should learn not everything will be taken as a flippant remark, which he has a tendency to do frequently, some days surprisingly people take the Governor serious.

Skelos' second score came when the conference of Senate Republicans voted to keep him as the leader, ensuring Paterson that he will have a formidable competitor for future negotiations and with a fragile non-majority for either party, he and the Republican have relevance. Paterson needs to make amends with Skelos and work with all the leaders to get the state back on track. As Governor he cannot afford many weeks like this week.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Espada For Majority Leader

EL DIARIO / LA PRENSA is reporting that one of the Gang of Three is promoting himself for Majority Leader of the New York State Senate. It was previously mentioned here that there was a likelihood of a 30-29-3 vote. The 30 votes for Republican Dean Skelos, 29 for Democrat Malcolm Smith and 3 for Pedro Espada.


Read More Here

Regardless of who becomes Majority Leader, there is no clear majority in the New York State and it will remain fragile and more contentious than ever.

Malcolm Smith's Comments

By contrast this is the rhetoric that Democrat Senate Minority Leader Malcolm Smith gets away and all the while Democrat Speaker Sheldon Silver is silent on everything.

- Smith's Comment - 

"It’s disappointing that we were not able to move forward on anything today.  My Conference came prepared to act, prepared to support Governor Paterson’s call to reach a deal on budget cuts. If we cannot advance the entire package of the Governor’s budget bills, we should put forth components of the bill that we all agree are immediately necessary –  Sweeping Public Authorities, Enforcing Empire Zone Provisions and Consolidating Public Authorities. These budget reductions would save the state considerably."

Frankly, what he said is hogwash, I guess you can still put lipstick on a pig in Albany.

"If we cannot advance the entire package..." restated means we are not prepared to make the necessary cuts either.

"Sweeping Public Authorities, Enforcing Empire Zone Provisions and Consolidating Public Authorities."  This means zip, nada, nothing...it would never occur in a one day session and will take many months to implement. It is only tinkering around the edges, which Paterson evens says will not fix the problem. 


Listen to the post below, the reporter states it correctly, this is nothing less than a gang attack, it is politics by the Democrats setting up the Senate Majority.

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