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

Friday, January 25, 2008

Congress and the Senate Race

There has been a lot of back and forth, claims and counter claims and contrast and negative campaigning in the race for the 48th Senate district. I would offer you a single major reason to vote and this is just one reason you should vote for Will Barclay.

The 23rd Congressional Seat!!!!

This is not receiving the attention this issue deserves in this race, yet it has huge implications for the North Country, it means jobs, continuation of the Fort Drum expansion, services provided by our hospitals, quality education and school facilities and an overall healthy economy.

If the New York State Senate swings to the Democrats then they will control redistricting after the next census in 2010. They will work with the New York State Assembly to redistrict, the Senate and Assembly seats and Congressional Districts.

This will result in the New York State being redistricted to provide "safe seats" for Assembly and Senate. Now, I will go out on a limb here and tell you the system of reapportionment is flawed; it should be done by an independent panel of citizens and not those who have a stake in their employment. The system being what it is we must deal with reality and this means the likelihood of the system changing is NIL.

Now to the 23rd Congressional Seat.

New York State is likely to continue losing population, which means our representation in Congress dwindles. The reduction will impact the entire state but most of the pressure for the reduction or expansion of the districts will be felt in the upstate districts where the districts encompass a lot of territory. The 23rd district will become even larger than it is now and make it more difficult for our representative to get around to see their constituents. John McHugh who has done an outstanding job in providing for expansion at Fort Drum will more than certain be a target to be redistricted and to shift the voter balance to the Democrats thus putting his representation at risk. Therefore, our economy, jobs, education and health care are at risk for nothing more than political reasons.

A vote for Will Barclay will be a vote for John McHugh and protection of YOUR local economy.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Big Money

The big money is rolling in and filling the pockets of the local media in what would otherwise be a slow, post holiday season, advertising period.

My friend over at Danger Democrat took great pride in ragging on Will Barclay for his sources of money, prior to Darrel Aubertine's filing which came out a day later.

Not to be trumped by young Barclay, Aubertine has been shaking quite a few leaves off the trees down in New York City. Why does New York City have so much interest in this election to contribute thousands of dollars to Aubertine? One word answers that question; Spitzer.

This certainly plays right into the issue brought on by young Barclay, this affirms his message, downstate is trying to gain control over the issues that effect you and I and they are buying their way into control.

Along with the money, Aubertine has a paid campaign manager that is not even from this area and does not know the issues that are important to us, she is nothing more than a political operative or party lackey.

Now, after Aubertine was quoted as saying he has never run a negative campaign he has turned the corner and running negative ads and mailers. What is the difference between a negative ad and a contrast ad? It is whether the candidate running the negative chooses to appear in the ad. Aubertine does not appear in his negative TV ad and his mailers are a personal negative against Barclay and not an issue driven contrast.

The North Country voters need to be smart, reject New York City money buying this election and not tolerate this negativity.

Burns, Bunks and Bunk

Jefferson County Sheriff John Burns campaigned in his last election that the county needed a larger jail. The ensuing discussion and rhetoric produced numbers for outboarding cost as reported by WWNY TV at $5000 per day, which should have cost the county around $1.8 million in total for the year. The bookish appearing Jude Seymour reporting for the Watertown Daily Times yesterday that the year end outboarding cost was $481,587, which is far far from $5000 a day that Sheriff Burns projected and WWNY keeps reporting.

Lets face reality here, the media needs the Sheriff for insider information and leaks when a particular situation is occurring on the law enforcement side, therefore, he gets special consideration on other issues and it appears WWNY has bought into his word on this $5000 a day figure without doing their homework.

Frankly, I do not care if Jefferson County builds a new or larger jail for the inmates or not as long as it is needed and it is in the best interest of the taxpayers.

Enough of the hype and sensationalism, be straight and tell the taxpayers of this county what is really needed and why, along with that, the State Commission of Correction needs to explain to taxpayers why county jails should be built with 20% more capacity, in other words why is maximum capacity 80% of the total capacity.

The election is over, you are now empowered with spending taxpayer's money, do it wisely.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Economic Divide in the Empire State

Governor Spitzer is prepared to deliver a first, a State of the Upstate address on Wednesday in Buffalo. In his State of the State address last week to the legislature, he proposed a $1 billion dollar infusion of capital into the upstate economy; we will no doubt hear more details on this during the budget address by the Governor on January 22nd.

During Spitzer’s campaign for Governor, he referred to upstate New York as “Appalachia” therefore; the governor is delivering on a campaign promise to turn the upstate economy around. The entire economy of New York State suffers primarily from high taxes and other cost associated with doing business in New York State, so, does spending more money by the government revitalize an economy? What if an already over extended New York State government is borrowing money to fuel an economy, is that good business? Is Spitzer liquidating New York State of its assets, the lottery, government property, etc. for funding this year’s budget initiatives? Here is my suggestion to the Governor, how about just reigning in the annual increases in state spending, such as the 7% increase in this year’s budget, more than double the rate of inflation.

After the details of the proposal are released, proponents of this investment will applaud while critics, most likely downstate, will howl with the message why not us and so the battle will begin for a piece of the action. More good questions to ask are; is this a good program for New York State as a whole? Will this just further enhance the upstate / downstate debate and battle, especially the one we see occurring in the 48th Senate district race?

The ball is in Spitzer’s court for a number of reasons; he failed miserably on his “day one” promise, and he has failed miserably on reforming government and he has failed miserably on bipartisanship. He has something to prove and we will be waiting for the details of this as well as the entire budget for New York.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Not A Good Situation

The contest for the Democratic nomination is becoming racially charged. This will never be a positive for either candidate, Clinton or Obama. Someone will become a clear loser and the other will only be a short term winner as the issue will persistently follow them and people will often wonder if they are being viewed through a prism.

Hillary is reported to have taken control of the message for her campaign from her advisors. Hillary and Bill are under fire for recent remarks; Bill referred to Obama's campaign as a "fairy tale" and Hillary is quoted as saying “Dr King’s dream began to be realised when President Lyndon Johnson passed the Civil Rights Act of 1964. It took a president to get it done.”

We need less discussion on what divides people and more discussion on reaching compromises that allow people to govern effectively. National discussion regarding race, gender, ethnicity, etc should center on bringing people together, focus on all of us being Americans and working together to reach consensus on issues that face this country.

Hillary needs to rethink her campaign message and get refocused quickly.

So far, I believe the contest on both the Republican and Democratic fronts are wide open.

I am intrigued by a Bloomberg candidacy.

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Schumer Endorses Barclay - NO KIDDING!

I put our email address on the site yesterday and today I received this interesting bit of information.


I encourage you to read the press release with emphasis on the glowing remarks made by Chuck for Doug Barclay:

"capacity for leadership",

"...dedicated himself to the service of New York as a State Senator, working tirelessly for the betterment..."

"Doug sponsored major legislation in housing, criminal justice, court reform and economic development. He spent much of his time focusing on the revitalization of upstate New York, a cause we have both championed over the years."

So, Ladies and Gentlemen, on the left and right of me, does Chuck really think that Will Barclay, serving the people of Northern and Central New York, would have different intentions than his father? I think not and, by how this reads, I think Chuck would agree.

If I had a camera, I am sure Chuck would say that himself, just to get on the camera.

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Implosion or Comeback Kid II

Hillary is staring down the barrel of another defeat with her campaign already showing signs of weakness after the Iowa defeat. So the question is, after Obama's victory tonight will the Clinton campaign completely implode or will it stage a comeback just like 1992 when Bill went zero for two? The difference between now and then was the first two primaries in 1992 were split by Harkin and Tsongas, so no real momentum was lost then, this time Obama will come away with even more momentum then he had coming out of Iowa.

First Out Of The Gate!

The young Barclay's new commercial.

Click to watch

We are anxiously awaiting the first distribution from the Aubertine campaign. Let me guess; Darrel Aubertine, milk man, hard working who earned his way, not a politician (according to Chuck), Chairman of the Jefferson County Board of Legislators while the Republicans held a 12-3 majority.

Stay tune, more analysis to come on this upstate, downstate power struggle.

Monday, January 7, 2008

Aubertine; Nice Man, Wrong Place, Wrong Time.

I mentioned in my opening remarks, that I am an independent voice with political interest and think that I am able to cut through the rhetoric of politicians.

In order to provide full disclosure, I will tell you, I like Mr. Aubertine and I think he has done a good job serving the North Country in the Assembly. Although, I cannot support his candidacy for the Senate and I will share my reasons after which I will begin and continue to post information coming from both candidacies.

Why I cannot support Aubertine:

  • I was enthusiastic about the Governorship of Eliot Spitzer; he seemed sincere about reforming the wayward practices of Albany and genuinely appeared to be concern about the “little person” on Main Street versus the egos of Albany. He has not performed to nearly the level of the hype and rhetoric that his campaign produced and in short, for a variety of reasons we are all familiar with, he has failed miserably in his first year in office. I will not support any potential to give him more power in Albany.

  • Mr. Aubertine campaigned on being a member of the majority in the Assembly, and you know, he was correct. As much as I dislike the inequities of the minority and majority systems in the Senate and Assembly, we have benefited from Mr Aubertine being a member of the majority. (The system still needs to be fixed so all residents of New York State are represented fairly) I cannot support Mr. Aubertine’s desire to join the minority of the Senate, he drove the majority message home, and it means something to me. You can tell me all day long the Senate will change hands, but no one can prove it, therefore it is merely political speculation, campaign rhetoric and a dangerous gamble on our part. Imagine this scenario for a moment, Mr. Aubertine being in the Senate minority and a Republican winning his Assembly seat and being in the minority.
  • On the reform side of the equation, New York State government is badly broken and Mr Aubertine claims to be one of us, but I just do not see the concern. It is not getting better and while I realize one person cannot change it, I do expect him to be a more vocal opponent to what is occurring. Richard Brodsky, a colleague of Mr Aubertine, is a vocal opponent of the status quo and he has not diminished his role as a member of the majority. Mr. Aubertine is too quiet and too “go along, get along” for me.
I like Mr. Aubertine, he is a very nice person, but this is not right for him or the residents of the North Country and that is his message, he is an honest man and I have no reason to doubt him on it.

Sunday, January 6, 2008


Welcome to the Political Independent Voice.

The intention of this blog is to bring to you the political actions of the day; plays, blunders, surprises and most importantly, the real deal, the blog will sort out fact from hyperbole. The blog will cover local politics such as how Jefferson County legislators will act on the jail after inmate population is down and it did not resonate with the public in their last election cycle and then the special election in 48th Senate district, as well as state politics such as our Governor who promised the world on "day one" and instead delivered like a meteor and we will throw in a bit of national politics such as who drove Hillary Clinton's bus over the cliff and no one told her yet.

Sit back, relax and enjoy the ride

Live Blogging