Sunday, April 30, 2006

So Many Topics, So little Time....
The Labor Council dinner was held Saturday the 29th of April at the Northampton Community Center hall. Governor Rendell and future U.S. Senator Bob Casey were the keynote speakers. I won't bore you with such inane details as the menu, but their speeches were nothing more than the usual stump, and as they were in friendly confines, preaching to the choir sufficed for their purpose. I support both men whole heartedly, but I also feel that Bob Casey having primary challengers helps him greatly.
Rick Santorum is already deploying the Republican hate machine in an all out smear fest, subscribing to the idea, "they may hate me, but I'll make them hate Bob Casey more." That will take an incredible amount of mudslinging, unfortunately, they are capable of doing it.
Having credible Democrats like Sandals and Pennachio test Bob now is like getting a flu shot.You know you are going to get exposed to it sooner or later, at least this way it won't be as bad.

Also at the dinner, Northampton Dem chairman Joe Long and County Executive John Stoffa sat as far apart as possible, which was no big surprise, and Congressman Charle Dent showed some stones in just attending. I don't know if he and Charles Dertinger, our Write in candidate, had any words for each other, but the Sunday Morning Call speculated that Dent might be considering his own Democratic Write in Campaign.
On one hand, I would despise Dent for doing it, on the other, I think Dent, in trying such a thing, would help Dertinger galvanize his forces, to get the deed done. A success by Dertinger and a failure by Dent would be comparable to giving Lehigh Dems a shock from a defibrillator, just the jumpstart they need.

So go ahead Mr. Dent, run a Democratic Write in campaign. The Labor unions are really behind Dertinger, and while you might have big enough stones to come to their dinner, how big will those same stones be after they take a well placed kick from the steel toed boot of labor?

On a more Local front, This past Friday many local news media reported another proposal from that legislative Tasmanian Devil, the 134th's own, Doug "Third" Reichley. Doug has been criss crossing his district begging forgiveness for taking the pay raise, by proposing laws to satisfy every possible constituency. This time he has proposed making it illegal for teen drivers to drive after 9 PM on weekends.
Obviously, he has forgotten that many teens have jobs in those hours, or the burden that would put on their parents, but when you are like Doug, and don't have kids, you wouldn't be able to relate to that. Perhaps he wishes to open up those jobs for the illegal immigrants of the area, and help lower labor costs for some businesses.

Here is a suggestion for dealing with teen drivers: Educate, don't Legislate.
We have enough laws that we can't and don't enforce, kids will be kids, and studies show that Senior citizen drivers are even more dangerous than teens after dark. However, Senior drivers vote, teens don't, so you won't see him suggesting we restrict Seniors. Further, the parents of some of those teens vote, and they might not be thrilled with anyone espousing they need to be told how to control their kids.

There is a lot of speculation that Doug is planning to run for Lehigh County District Attorney next year, hence this sudden rush to pass all kinds of meaningless crime legislation to show he is "tougher" on criminals.
How many criminals have you heard of that have checked the crime laws before committing a crime? Think Charles Cullen did? Do you really think child molesters are deterred by longer sentences? It is just political posturing.
Some of you might ask why Doug is running for re-election to the Statehouse when he is going to run for D.A. next year?
Another Column, another day.


Blogger Bernie O'Hare said...

Charles Dertinger may be your write-in candidate, but he certainly is not mine. The Morning Call trashed him in Sunday as a "faithless politician," and for good reason.

First, he wants to abandon a Council that has already had to stack its membership with 2 political hacks to replace other Council members appointed to Stoffa's cabinet, and within months of being elected.

Second, he engaged in back room shenanigans with party boss Joe Long to make these appointments, and violated the state's Sunshine Act. A lawsuit has been lodged over this blatant violation, and I ought to know about that because I filed it.

Third, he and his Democratic cohorts stabbed County Exec Stoffa in the back by rejecting his selection for Director of Administration.

Fourth, he was a proponent of a nonsensical code of civility that actually provides for suspension of a Council member deemed a bad boy, effectively disenfranchising those who voted for him.

Fifth, during his previous 2 unsuccessful efforts to defeat the formidable Ron Angle, Dertinger engaged in some very nasty politics, although Ron is capable of rolling around in the gutter with the best of them.

Now I might be inclined to overlook these five glaring defects if I knew that Dertinger had an agenda other than his own advancement, but he does not. He never spoke out against the Iraq war. He has taken no positions on any national issues. There are no letters to the editor penned under his name. He is very much a Democratic Lynn Swann, hand-picked to do the job. The only thing I do know is that he's a union guy, although he's not even local. He's from NYC. Maybe he should run there.

I'm sure he'll be able to get 1,000 union write-in votes, but he stands for nothing. It's a shame that this is the best we hacve to offer against Charlie Dent. Dent is no Bush clone, but I've heard him enough to know I disagree with his position on most issues. But at least I know his positions.

3:51 PM  
Blogger caseyhasabat said...

Dear Bernie, I thank you for sharing your insights, and I understand your concerns for the legitimacy of Charlie Dertinger's campaign. In my posting I was trying to make a point of how lackadaisical some Lehigh County Dems have been in their party organizational efforts, and how a Dent write in on the Democratic side could get them off their keisters. I have stated before on my blog that one of the Lehigh County Dems problems is that we have no farm system outside of Allentown for credible Democratic candidates for local office.
It has been pointed out to me that even our recently elected County Exec lives in Bethlehem, but where are the Lehigh County Candidates? There are a lot of Democrats like me who want to be team players, and have made the choice to support Dertinger over Dent. I received an email comparing Dent to Terminal Cancer, and Dertinger to a sexually transmitted disease. Which would you rather have? Neither, but at least now there is a choice.

12:33 PM  
Blogger Bernie O'Hare said...

Since posting my original comments, I read an Allentown Times interview with Dertinger. He DOES voice opposition to our unilateral misadventure in Iraq. He also decried the huge cuts to our domestic programs, noting that government has an obligation to help those who are most vulnerable.

Although I remain highly skeptical, I'm certainly willing to listen.

It sure seems the campaign is doomed from the start. It's maddening that this is the best we could do - a last minute write-in candidate against a vulnerable republican. Had either Cunningham or John Morganelli decided to run, either would have crushed Dent. T.J. Rooney would also have been a formidable opponent, notwithstanding the flack he would catch for his stance on legislative pay raises.

7:22 PM  
Blogger Bernie O'Hare said...

"I received an email comparing Dent to Terminal Cancer, and Dertinger to a sexually transmitted disease. Which would you rather have?"

That all depends on how one gets that sexually transmitted disease, don't you think?

7:30 PM  
Blogger caseyhasabat said...

I guess it all comes down to how you want to give or take your pound of flesh

9:37 AM  
Blogger caseyhasabat said...

I guess it all comes down to how you want to give or take your pound of flesh

9:37 AM  

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