The King's Marquee

Election Day is finally here! Let's get out there an seal the deal for Trump and the American people! And don't forget to support the CTGOP under-ticket!

Friday, November 30, 2007

Deutsche Weihnacht - 1942

Who thought Christmas in Germany could be so interesting? This film footage warms the heart. This is probably one of the best propaganda pieces of the World War II era. Even though the period of time was one of the worst in world history, its an interesting commentary on how Christmas was celebrated during wartime. War is hell no matter what side you are on. These guys are just making the best of it in 1942.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Hartford City Hall Urges Police to Break the Law

I'm sure you've seen this incredible story where Hartford City Hall passed a resolution in part on November 26th that reads:

"RESOLVED, That the Mayor assist the Chief of the Hartford Police Department in developing policies that do not hinder the police from properly carrying out their duties in identifying criminal elements and assuring the public safety but to avoid becoming involved in immigration issues or asking the immigration status of individuals detained for other reasons."

It's incredulous that the Hartford City Council would pass a resolution that urges police officers to not assist the Federal Government in identifying ILLEGAL aliens, or those individuals that came by visa and have not followed through on their legal commitment to depart as they agreed to when they entered this country.

Who the hell do they think they are? Let police officers do their jobs, cooperate with federal officials, and be engaged in returning those who are here ILLEGALLY back home where they belong.

Now Hartford City Council finds itself sitting above the laws of the land.

Maybe Hartford City Officials should direct their attention on their school district issues, crime problems, and trying to keep businesses from leaving Hartford - instead of asking local police to break the law. Oh, and failing to cooperate with Federal officials is, in fact ... breaking the law.

If you suspect an illegal alien follow the directions below:

How to Report Illegal Immigration

The immigration law that requires that aliens be documented for legal entry. Those who sneak into the country are referred to as "entry without inspection" (EWI). Others enter with legal documentation and then violate the terms on which they have been admitted by taking jobs that are not authorized or overstaying the authorized period of stay in the country. Both types of illegal immigrants are deportable under Immigration and Nationality Act Section 237 (a)(1)(B) which says:
"Any alien who is present in the United States in violation of this Act or any other law of the United States is deportable."

If you have evidence of illegal immigration, we recommend you contact the main DHS Hotline for assistance.
1 866 DHS - 2ICE or 1 866 347 - 2423
If Hartford City Council wants an immigration war, they may get more than they bargained for. I hope the Fed sets up a special ILLEGAL alien deportation center right next to City Hall.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Time to End the Kwanzaa Charade

One of the most ridiculous things manufactured in the history of time has got to be the phony holiday period known as Kwanzaa.

Now of course, people may celebrate as they wish, light candles, read poetry and feast as they desire; no one is against that. Unlike Hanukkah and Christmas, which both have deep roots in world history, and are considered legitimate holidays by most standards, the fictional holiday of Kwanzaa was manufactured in 1966 by Ron Karenga (formally known as Ron Everett).

The history of Karenga is troubling enough. See the Wikipedia entry about this violent, woman torturing ex-con here. It's not often that someone as despicable as Karenga gets rewarded by society by giving them credit for founding a holiday.

In order to understand the purpose of Kwanzaa, you have to look at what its creator intended. Karenga clearly has stated that it's founded on his view of the seven principles of "blackness". Karenga urges followers to uphold these principles as they correspond to Karenga's notion that "the sevenfold path of blackness is "think black, talk black, act black, create black, buy black, vote black, and live black."

Moreover, Kwanzaa was founded In 1977, in Kwanzaa: origin, concepts, practice, Karenga stated, that Kwanzaa "was chosen to give a Black alternative to the existing holiday and give Blacks an opportunity to celebrate themselves and history, rather than simply imitate the practice of the dominant society. Thus, the entire purpose of this holiday is really to create a separation between Blacks and Whites by inserting a new holiday, and calling Christmas nothing more than the holiday of the dominant or majority - basically calling Christmas the holiday of whites, or the master.

More insulting was Karanga's comments in 1967, when he publicly stated that "Jesus was psychotic" and that Christianity was a white religion that blacks should [turn away from/avoid]. Further alienating himself, he embraced Marxism, and socialist principles apparent in Kwanzaa.

Here are some additional statements from Karenga through this writings with sources.

Unfortunately, good sense doesn't always prevail, in one of his worst moments as President, in 2004 while trying to pander to African-Americans, President George W. Bush, publicly gave credibility to Kwanzaa through a Presidential address to practitioners of this phony holiday. Moreover, the United States Postal Service, under pressure from Black Leaders created a postage stamp recognizing Kwanzaa.

What's also disappointing about Kwanzaa is the fact that it's intent is to create separation in peoples, not unity at Christmastime. Kwanzaa is strictly a black holiday, created specifically for black people. While its true that Hanukkah is religious Jewish-based holiday, it transcends races and ethnic ties. Christianity, whether celebrated religiously or secularly is for all people.

A lot of people are getting caught up in this new tradition out of peer pressure, and undue influence. You might want to take a moment to remind people falling into this trap of what Kwanzaa is really about.

And as for Hallmark, and other calendar companies, maybe its high time to use alternative card and calendar companies that don't collaborate to infiltrate our society with Kwanzaa propaganda for greedy purposes.

Here are some other sources that may be useful:

Why Black Christians Shouldn't Celebrate Kwanzaa

The Difference between Christmas and Kwanzaa

A Case Of the Kwanzaa Blues (New York Times)

The Spirit of Kwanzaa - Mona Charon

Happy Kwanzaa - Paul Mulshine

Kwanzaa - Racist Holiday from Hell - Reverened Jesse Lee Peterson

The Fraud of Kwanzza - The Flopping Aces Blog

Challenging the Original Idea behind Kwanzaa - The finders fire

Interview between Pat Robertson and Jesse Lee Peterson - CBN

Comment of Bush's stupidity to recognize Kwanzaa from the White House - American View

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Precious: beloved friend, companion, Rest In Peace

It's been a very tough three and a half weeks for all of us here.

As some of know, our female Himalayan Sealpoint, Precious, began showing symptoms of neurological disorder (central vestibular disease) several weeks back. We monitored her, and cared for her the best we could since that time.
We took her on five different vet visits plus a visit to the Tufts Hospital for Small Animals just outside of Boston. We learned that her condition and prognosis was not good, but we still continued to try to find an answer and a cure up through her last days.
She continued to deteriorate, and I was feeding her four times a day by syringe, and in the same manner providing her water, and giving her medications. It was a painful exercise, but one of love and devotion. Our dear Precious provided us unconditional love for eight solid years. And had it helped, I would have fed her in the same manner for the rest of her life.
The full story can be found here in much greater detail.
People who have had and lost pets will understand what we've been through, and there is no definition of sadness that fits how we feel today. The sadness is horrific, and beyond words, and the void is real. Some people do not understand that our pets are members of our family, and the bond with them is real and unbroken. These wonderful creatures come into our lives and provide us with an incredible amount of joy and happiness. They are both our children and our wise-adults all at the same time, depending upon the scenario.
But nothing is entirely free in the balance of this Earthly existence. Our furry friends have a much shorter circle of life than we do.
They remind us of what is important in life. And we can tend to take for granted the notion that some things will be the same every day, or that some people and pets will be around forever. And when something tragic like this happens, we are harshly reminded of the unpredictable finite aspects of our existence.
This morning, my daughter was seeking out Precious; calling her name and asking for her over and over. We told her that Precious is in Heaven. Of course, for her, Heaven could be another room in the house where she is hiding. She is two and a half, and doesn't yet fully understand all of what's happened. I may have taught her the importance of caring for animals, but the lesson of death is something she can learn sometime in the future; she doesn't need that hard and complex lesson today. I certainly don't have all the answers, and struggle myself about what happens after death. I know what I'd like to believe, and for now my wife and I will have to cling to that notion regardless of how absurd it can seem.
Precious is at the Rainbow Bridge this Thanksgiving. While it doesn't give me any real satisfaction because she is not sitting with me here, it's a start in the healing process.
Usually, you don't see this kind of writing from me. But even The King has his weakness (or strengths - depending how you look at it).
I know a lot of you read this column now that I'm linked from everywhere. Please take this Thanksgiving Holiday to remind individual people how important they are to you. You think they know because you think it, but there is nothing like a word or two to confirm it.
For pet owners, please heed my warning from our sad experience; three and a half weeks ago, Precious was a spry as ever, playing, meowing, scampering around, grooming me late into the evening, and doing all the things that she was expected to do. And today, she is gone. Make time for them even when you are busy. You never know when they are on the very end of their short cycle of life.
Precious, thank you for eight wonderful years. We love and miss you. When the day of my passing comes, I hope to see you once again and hold you in my arms and give you gentle pets and hugs. In the meantime, we will take care of Presley; he misses you too.

Monday, November 19, 2007

UPDATE: Republican Town Committee meeting date is Monday, November 26th @ 7:15 p.m.

Peter Martin sent this note along -

"The GOP Town Committee meeting will not be held tonight as previously reported, but will be held next Monday (11/26) at 7:15pm at the Town Hall Auditorium. Sorry for the mix-up. Hope to see you all there."

Thanks Peter for keeping us informed!

Saturday, November 17, 2007

BONDS* Indicted bt a Grand Jury: Thank God!

Sometimes the judicial system can really surprise you.

The story that is out everywhere that Bonds* was indicted by a Grand Jury brought a sincere smile to my face since this arrogant cheater has been thumbing his nose at players, fans, and MLB authorities for years now. ESPN can hang it's head in shame now - Bonds* on Bonds*, indeed.

Now there's only three things left to do to complete justice due to our Nation's century's old past-time:

1. Expunge Bond's phony record; Let "The Great" Mr. Henry "Hank" Aaron - a hero, a champion's champion, and true man of merit retain his home run crown.

2. Block Barry Bonds* from ever entering in the Baseball Hall of Fame. This lying creep belongs in the Hall of Shame.

3. Ban Barry Bonds* from ever putting on a Major League Baseball uniform again. Fans deserve to see athleticism on the field, not drug enhanced pretenders.

Just when you thought the Chicago White Sox scandal was baseball's biggest hoax - Bonds* has topped them all. Rest easy Shoeless Joe, now there's someone far worse than you.

Friday, November 16, 2007

West Hartford Republican Town Committee meeting : November 19, 2007

One of our this years' candidates, Peter Martin, reported on this blog that the next West Hartford GOP Town Committee Meeting is Monday, November 19, 2007 at 7:15 p.m. at the West Hartford Town Hall Auditorium. While Peter and I disagree on the capability of our current West Hartford Republican Town Leadership, and the manner in which campaigns and business are conducted - we do agree that it's TIME to do something about it.

Obviously, we Republicans are fresh off a major defeat, and a lot of folks are burned out and wanting to put politics on the side for a while. Case in point - the major blogs around town seem to be void of new material and posts. And the energy level is astoundingly low. Again, not a shock for only a week past an election.

Of course, people are entitled their space, and deserve the time to recharge their batteries. But keep in mind that there are those in town that are hell-bent on keeping the status quo in tact and wish to keep fresh ideas and new faces from getting involved. To some of these people, the West Hartford GOP is their little social club and as long as they can meet with "old" friends and sip martinis, then they they are happy campers. And this is the state of the West Hartford Republican Town Committee. But its up to registered Republicans to do something about it. Change won't happen unless people make it happen.

In this town, it doesn't take a lot of effort to dissuade people from participating or getting involved. It's bad enough that demographically it's an uphill battle. But the old adage that you can't influence what you can't see does have some merit. Martin calls on people to "participate", and I call on people to be "activist". We probably mean nearly the same thing.

Political Activism means proactively engaging in creating, formulating and campaigning year round on issues that matter. First, you need leaders that buy into the notion that its the job of the Republican Chairman to lead from the front and surround himself (or herself) with leaders that are willing to take the issues to the street. Any approach less than this from the start will guarantee doom for West Hartford Republicans (and taxpayers) in 2009. The battle of ideas starts today, and the war for majority representation on the Council begins anew, right now.

This doesn't mean we have to stand outside of city hall with signs every week. No. This means creating an artful campaign of outreach, communication, expanding the leadership, relationship building, press strategy, steady opposition in the form of representation at all public meetings, or through letter writing (all year log), and engagement in all debates on all issues where they matter. This starts with rejuvenating our base. We cannot simply pick this up in August of 2009 and expect to make a go of it. We are not in upstate NY or in a Republican mid-west stronghold.

So on that note, I'll leave you with something I found off the Leon County Republican Party webpage. What's interesting is that it hits the nail on the head without going overboard with fancy language and unnecessary sophistication. I particularly call your attention to the last paragraph below:

I am a Republican because

I am a REPUBLICAN because......

The proper function of government is to do for the people those things that have to be done but cannot be done, or cannot be done as well, by individuals, and that the most effective government is government closest to the people.

Good government is based upon the individual and that each person’s ability, dignity, freedom and responsibility must be honored and recognized.

That free enterprise and the encouragement of individual initiative and incentive have given this nation an economic system second to none.

Sound money management should be our goal.

In equal rights, equal justice and equal opportunity for all, regardless of race, creed, age, sex or national origin.

We must retain those principles of the past worth retaining, yet always be receptive to new ideas with an outlook broad enough to accommodate thoughtful change and varying points of view.

That Americans value and should preserve their feeling of national pride, and at the same time share with people everywhere a desire for peace and freedom and the extension of human rights throughout the world.

The Republican Party is the best vehicle for translating these ideals into positive and successful principles of government.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

No Holds Barred: An honest look at the West Hartford GOP, and their failure to win Municipal elections

Finally, as promised, I’ve completed part one of what will most likely be a series on the West Hartford Municipal elections and the West Hartford Republican Party – from the view of unconnected and uncompromised Republican (this means I don’t owe anyone political favors) so I can pretty much tell it like it is without fear of losing my place in the popularity poll, or worrying about money flow and favors.

So, if you are a Republican who believes that Ronald Reagan’s eleventh commandment is meant to serve as cover from airing internal party criticism, then you’ve probably come to the wrong place. Truth be told, there are more Benedict Arnolds in our midst than saints, that’s for certain. And since yours truly has taken a few personal hits during this election and after, I guess it’s more than fair to fire back. Phasers locked and ready!

And why, oh why you may ask? Let me get into this a little bit. First, West Hartford Republicans don’t know the first thing about activism. Activism is the single most important ingredient to shaping public opinion. When public opinion is on your side, you can pass meaningful and productive legislation (or small town ordinances), improve development conditions, and win elections. There is no machine here in West Hartford that works day in and day out to get out the word on the street. Instead, you have well-to- do, stuffy, sweater wearing types that wouldn’t dare lift a finger or get their hands dirty unless it mean signing a check (and you don’t even get much of that).

Where are the young Republicans? Where are the press releases from the party chairman on this or that issue? Where are surveys, fliers, websites, polls, rallies, special meetings, letters to the editors, signs, newsletters, email blasts, regular district meetings, coordinators sessions – quite frankly – where is ANYTHING?

The answer is - it's no where.

The Democrats on any given day can make a few phone calls and get ten or fifteen people out in front of Blue Back Square holding signs; we would be lucky to get one or two. We have no base on operations from which to conduct public influence. And what’s worse is that we have no one willing to even put it together. What a shame. With dozens of people waiting in the wings to be coordinated, the West Hartford GOP disenfranchises them with the usual “sure, give me your number, we’ll call you.” And they never do. This has also been my experience. I personally heard the same rhetoric from Herb Shepherdson several years ago, and Kevin Connors this year.

Back to the election…

It’s pretty clear to even the casual observer that the West Hartford Republican Party had no winning strategy from the start. From A to Z (and mirroring the above) there was no organization, no planning, and there was a total lack of coordination. Campaigns are run on issues and platforms. And these past two years, the Democratic Party gave Republicans the golden calf on a silver plate, and party leaders dropped the ball. Five months ago, the West Hartford Taxpayers Association orchestrated a referendum that sent the Democratic Party reeling back on their heels. This was the ultimate spring-board for success, and yet you barely heard a word about taxes in this campaign from GOP hopefuls. Or if you did, there was no outrage, no sense of urgency whatsoever.

But let’s be honest, the first mistake was poor candidate selection. If campaigns are won and lost on issues, surely you would hope that you would select candidates capable of understanding and articulating their positions and the positions of the party platform in public. Since the public is easy to forgive and forget, challengers have the job of convincing the public to change course; they have to establish a sense of outrage about the current state of things. With few exceptions, this slate of candidates acted as if they were incumbents, sitting with a 3-1 majority. The candidates for the most part were nice people – folks you’d absolutely want living next door to you – but perhaps not those who’d you’d select to deliver concerns at a podium.

In my conversations with the Chairman of the West Hartford Republican Party, he angrily reminded me that there were not dozens of people knocking down his door to run. And I’m sure that smart people look at the demographic ratios, and the odds and statistics of past races and figure that it’s a long road (to Tipperary) and victory will cost personal sacrifice beyond the norm.

The problem here is that the GOP should have been recruiting “A player” candidates all year long. Courting, planning, grooming, coaching and positioning credible individuals with person success records and real passion to run for office. But instead they did nothing. And the Party Chairman and his friends did nothing visible to make this happen. Recruitment is part of the game. You can’t tell me that even with 20,000 registered Republicans that they couldn’t find more a few interested people, a veteran and a few upstart kids with young children (and I’ll get to that part later). In short, they sat on their arses and talked to a few wheelers and dealers that wanted representation on the Council on behalf of their firms.

The second mistake was lack of organized activism at the grass roots level (which I touch on above). If you look at the successful outcome organized by the West Hartford Taxpayers Association and you compare their efforts in contrast to that of the West Hartford Republicans, you can see an incredible difference - not just in outcome by at all levels of public debate. WHTA was everywhere, in the newspaper, writing letters, making phone calls, using the media, and shaping the debate. In this election, you saw very little of that.

I can tell you that in the weeks preceding the election, I received nearly a half dozen mailings from Democratic candidates and at least six phone calls from Democrats urging me to vote for them. Whether or not they were paid or volunteer is not the issue, it’s that they had an effective campaign strategy with resources to help make it effective.

Do you realize that my household did not receive ONE phone call urging me to vote Republican? NOT ONE. Talk about a failure of organization, that’s about as basic as it gets.

It’s true that some people like Tim Brennan are rumored to have spend $25,000 (we won’t know until it’s filed), but based on what I saw from Republicans, he probably could have spent one tenth of this amount and still beat out the GOP by a significant margin.


The answer is lack of a coherent message on the Republican side. Even though I was following and listening clearly to everything written and said, I never could quite interpret what the Adler-Davidoff-Martin-Clark-Seder team stood for – alone or together the conversations were mixed. My own opinions, thoughts and words filled the void; I found myself making a better case for their election, when from them, all you heard was silence. Case in point, over the last few days, I spoke with at least seven Republicans who told me that they didn’t vote – at all. When I asked why, they all said the same thing (plus or minus a few points against one or two candidates) which was that they didn’t see a difference between Republicans and Democrats this time around. Moreover, they found the Republicans who did run – uninspiring and inarticulate on the issues that mattered to them most.

In my discussions with GOP leaders, I found that even today they still don’t seem to understand what went wrong. I was told that they couldn’t come out kicking and screaming because the residents would not elect zealots to the Council. My response to this warped thinking is “rubbish”. If you cannot even motivate your own base to vote for you, then how can you expect independents and “majority seekers” to side with you during an election? Humble and quiet is a ridiculous strategy.

Now, I came down pretty hard on Kelly Clark in my open letter to her but clearly it was warranted. I will also go on record to state that the feedback on Kelly by several members of her own team (whether they like it or not – I mean several) is that she wasn’t cut out to run. Many of them were outraged with her performance in the debates, and she was deemed “timid” by candidates that went door to door with her (when she did go door to door).

Now the chairman and others made the excuse that she had two children at home, which sort of begs the question – then why did she run? Council meetings, strategy sessions and so forth take up a lot of time. If you don’t have the time to commit to a position where you are at the beckon call of the demanding schedule of serving in this capacity, then what business to you have in this race?

Kelly came in fourth without doing much. Fact is that if she had actually got off her duff, and put effort into it, she would have found herself on the Council, and Visconti would be out. All she had to do is do a few photo ops with the kids and she would have picked up votes from dozens of soccer moms across West Hartford. The world says that she was a substitute for her husband who couldn’t run because of a work-related conflict of interest. That’s only speculation since I don’t know the details. I can only comment on what I heard and saw from her as a candidate. Maybe she didn’t want to win. She certainly didn’t campaign like she wanted to win.

If you look at the end numbers of the election, you can make an excellent case that she sort of stiffed those folks that put her up there to run by accepting nomination and folding. A poor debate performance is forgivable (even for someone in a career who is trained in debate and public speaking) but the lack of effort is unforgivable. What she and Peter Martin (who awoke a few weeks before the end of the election) have to realize is that early on the pace is set in an election, and you need to be out in front from the start, since you know that the science of campaigning always tells you that the lead narrows a few weeks out, and if you are behind or off the radar from the start than you’ll probably lose in the end.

Why do I have the right to say anything? Let me tell you. I’m a resident, and I pay taxes in this town, I am outraged, and I was counting on Clark and Martin and my party to WIN this election on my behalf and take back the majority. I was let down. I have a right to be angry with people who I was counting on to make my cases, and make a difference. Now look at what we have. Don’t tell me I don’t have a right to voice my opinion about this election and the candidates that ran (or barely tried to run). I have a right to complain – ask the question – Is this the best we could have done? Is this the best you could have done as a candidate? It’s noble to fight and lose, it’s not noble to sit back and watch things unfold without making the effort to effect change – particularly when you’ve been nominated by fellow citizens to do so.

Giving credit where it’s due – Mr’s. Alder and Davidoff campaigned every weekend at the grocery stores and devoted a lot of time to talking issues with residents. I witnessed this first hand. It’s no surprise that these guys finished first and second given their commitment, and that they had party insider support (more so Adler) than anyone else. Peter M was considered Al Turco’s protégé but he also had Al’s soft touch which is great if you’re on a high-powered winning team seeking re-election with clear sense of confidence from your constituents. Peter sort of ran as an add-on candidate. Perhaps the lesson here for the GOP is to not run upstart attorneys as candidates – they are low risk, low impact players that don’t resonate well with the public.

Michael Seder campaigned his heart out. He went door to door in the rain, stood out holding his sign in the wind, and took his personal message up and down the streets of West Hartford. For a man who is up there in age, he put our younger candidates to shame. The problem is that he did a lot of this work on his own. If Seder had a campaign team with even a handful of young Republicans and concerned voters, he might have had a better shot at being elected. You cannot be (just about) the sole person taking your message to the residents. This is where an active Republican Town Committee would have come in handy. He seemed pretty much on his own through most of this election. You have to wonder if he asked for help, and if he did what kind of response he got from the Party.

Another side note on Clark and Martin is warranted here. Folks who I talked with had very negative things to say about two people running for office who just recently had children. The negative perception of leaving your infants at home with a baby-sitter while you campaign or attend Council meetings didn’t sit well with moms and dads in West Hartford. As a father of an infant and a young child (and yes I write my comments during their sleeping hours and publish whenever), I was outraged at how someone could leave their wonderful child to run around town and seek election to office. To me, these two had their priorities mixed up from the beginning. And whoever was dumb enough to recruit them should be ashamed of themselves.

Martin and Clark belong with their children. This is one of the best times in their lives and they already have lost valuable time when they should have been at home catering to their children’s needs, and enjoying the endearing moments. In reality, it’s a blessing that they lost. God has done them a favor that they may never come to understand. Enjoy the time with your babies; they aren’t babies for very long. In both your cases, a loss was a big win for you personally.

One person I hadn't touched on here and is worthy of note is Theresa McGrath. First, Mrs. McGrath deserves an incredible amount of credit for her personal commitment and dedication to the Republican Party. No, she didn't pull out a win. Frankly, the Town Clerk position was never going to be a position that Republicans could have seriously vied for given their minority demographic, and daunting uphill battle for Council and BOE slots. Paid, civil service roles tend to go to the Dems unless demographics tell a different story, or a popular incumbent mayor gets involved.

Mrs. McGrath did more over the past year than any of the Councilman or Republican politcos did over the past two years. She organized citizens via the West Hartford Taxpayers Association and helped repel a massive budget increase that would have increased taxes and increased spending to near double digit figures. The outward angry response by Democrats reached a fervor pitch unprecedented in West Hartford politics. The level of hate and mean-spirited rhetoric spewed by her opponents reached dropped the civility of the debate to an all time low - particularly for small time local politics. She faced intimidation, public humiliation, nasty scrutiny, personal attacks on nearly every level. I could go on and speak to how even her children received mistreatment, but I don't want to go too far down that road.

Notwithstanding, she sacrificed her family time, her career, and created a personal hardship to make this happen. If that wasn't enough, she helped fill an empty spot on the Republican ticket by running for Town Clerk. West Hartford Republicans haven't seen that level of personal commitment and dedication in God knows how many years. And I have to say, that from this writer's perspective, she didn't receive the support and respect that her level of commitment deserved. This writer wants to thank her personally for what she's done for all of us.

If the chairman is correct in his assessment that "no one is knocking down their door to run" - do you think that given how Mrs. McGrath was treated by her own team over the past year gives residents a warm and fuzzy feeling about jumping on board the GOP candidate express train? And for someone to use the phrase "damaged goods" is pretty pathetic. Think about how families benefited from her efforts. Think about how the party insiders turned a sure-win issue into tomato soup. Frankly, it's an amazing turn of events.

I’ve said a lot here, and it’s only the tip of the iceberg.

And I recognize that I haven’t offered a great number of solutions to the woes of this dysfunctional GOP Party here in West Hartford. I’m putting together a post that offers suggestions and the party leaders can accept it or choose to ignore it. If they ignore it, my recommendation is that a group of concerned citizens that want to see measures for change taken work hand and foot to uproot those controlling the Republican Party in town. Leaving this group at the helm guarantees poor opposition to Democratic incumbents, and steady tax increases for years and years to come.

Whether Adler, Visconti, or Davidoff want to participate in the formation of a new Republican Party in West Hartford is unknown. But all three of them will show their cards soon enough.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Blue Back Square: Veteran's building?

Seeing as Veterans Day is tomorrow, it seems appropriate that we ask the question - what happened to the building/space that was supposed to be allocated for the veterans in Blue Back Square?

Last time I remember, the veterans had a hall where Blue Back Square stands, and now they seem to have nothing. In fact, I hear they are hanging out at some place called "Duffy's".

I've heard a ton of rumors about this from the comments that the location where they were going to build a structure is contaminated, to the comment that they raised the rent so high that the Vets can't afford the space.

Can shed some light and reality on this situation?

Certainly if anyone deserves space in BBS, its our Veterans. If it weren't for them, we probably wouldn't be here.

Friday, November 9, 2007

Bishop Anderson's Latest comments off the ACC Blog

Now that the election is over, we can get back to basics:

A Message from Bishop-elect Anderson

Beloved in Christ,

This week, an Associated Press news article quoted the Presiding Bishop of The Episcopal Church (TEC), Katherine Jefferts Schori, making a pejorative statement about the orthodox. The statement was ment to make the orthodox seem absurd. In it, she said, "Obviously a handful of our church leaders are still upset and would like to see the church never ordain and never baptize a gay or lesbian person." The orthodox generally do not recognize homosexuality as a permanent state of human existence, but rather an inclination that contravenes God's established order and which, if acted on, is sinful. Therefore, if an individual were engaged in sinful acts or in supporting and encouraging others to engage in sinful acts, they would not be a candidate at that point for baptism or ordination. If they repented of their actions, they could be baptized; if God called them to ordained ministry, they could be ordained. Many homosexual people were baptized as infants and later moved into an actively homosexual lifestyle, and of course if they don't repent and turn aside from such, they would not be candidates for ordination. Indeed, why does Jefferts Schori think that they would be candidates? Only in TEC could that make sense!

She also has announced that TEC's House of Bishops is proceeding with punitive action against former TEC bishops William Cox, Andrew Fairfield and Dave Bena. Bishop Cox transferred to the Southern Cone, Bishop Fairfield to Uganda and Bishop Bena to Nigeria, so it is absurd for TEC to go through the motions of disciplining bishops they no longer have authority over. And the crime? Leaving TEC without permission! I picture Captain Schori standing on the deck of the TEC Titanic, screaming at passengers and crew as they lower the life boats, "You can't leave...I haven't given you permission to must stay and die with us or we will punish you!"

Jefferts Schori has also written threatening letters to Bishop Bob Duncan of Pittsburgh and Bishop Jack Iker of Fort Worth, warning them that if they don't cease and desist from actions recently taken (diocesan voting to remove the accession clause from their canons), they will be dealt with most severely. Bishop Schofield of San Joachim can expect a similar letter in the mail any day. To say things are getting tense is an understatement. Although Pittsburgh and Fort Worth have to pass a second reading of their canonical changes, and this potentially puts an actual departure as much as a year away, Schori and her Canonical Army may invade at any time. It would be wise for all these dioceses to have rapid response teams in place 24/7.

Now if this isn't sad enough, there are TEC dioceses such as Rochester, New York, which just passed a resolution defying Schori and General Convention, stating that they don't intend to be limited by resolutions of General Convention. They have in mind the Resolution B033, which agreed to "exercise restraint by not consenting to the consecration of any candidate to the episcopate whose manner of life presents a challenge to the wider church". Beyond Schori there are many who have drifted even further away from Anglicanism, and they help govern TEC.

Good news, however, comes with the word that the Provincial Synod of the Southern Cone, meeting in Valparaiso, Chile, has passed a historic agreement to welcome into their membership (on an emergency and pastoral basis) Episcopal Church dioceses that are separating from TEC.

This may well be a place for the three American dioceses that are contemplating departure. It does raise some questions as to how enrollment in Southern Cone will affect their participation in the Network and in the Common Cause Partners. Common Cause has an executive meeting planned in December and I am sure that some of the questions will be answered then, if not before. A possibility is that the Southern Cone safe harbor will be a temporary measure until Common Cause is further along, ready to actually merge the separate entities and ask for Provincial status - and that could be several years away. Difficult questions will need to be dealt with by the Common Cause Partners, such as the ordination of women, harmonization of the Canon Law of the separate bodies, and prayer books. Those who continue to use the 1979 American Prayer Book or translations of it - although it has some useful aspects - open themselves to the flawed theology that runs through it and has assisted TEC in getting where it is today.

The Global South Primates' Communique calls for three things that seem very reasonable and wise: 1) the urgent need for a Primates' meeting fairly soon; 2) the postponement of the Lambeth Conference 2008; and 3) an early Global South 4th Encounter. Of these three, the Archbishop of Canterbury has the privilege of convening the Primates, and the AAC suspects that he will deliberately NOT do this because they might well move beyond his comfort zone. He also has the right to call the Lambeth Conference of Bishops, and his financial investment and obligation may be beyond what he can reverse. Still, if he arranges a meeting and only a partial representation participates, it shows the entire world that his power to convene has been lost.

Although the Global South probably cannot prevent Lambeth 2008, they can stay away. The third item on the list is fully within the power of the Global South to accomplish, and ideally would be planned for the first quarter of 2008 - in time to impact the balance of the year's Anglican events.

Meanwhile, I usually speak with one priest or vestry member per day who is planning a departure from TEC, either personally or as a church. A significant part of the American Anglican Council's pastoral work is to advise, counsel, and make resources known so that the best decisions can be made. Remember in prayer those who are walking away from their church homes, their careers, their salaries, health insurance and pension in order to be faithful to the Gospel. The Holy Spirit is a refining fire, purifying the church and her people.

Blessings and Peace in Jesus,
The Rev. Canon David C. Anderson
President, The American
Anglican Council
Suffragan Bishop-elect CANA

Thursday, November 8, 2007

West Hartford GOP: Off to a wrong start or just forgetful?

I noticed a comment from a writer that certainly got my attention a few days ago at WH Blog that deserves addressing. In between the usual Move On dot org hate rhetoric and venom that the commie lib wing of the Democratic Party tends to write on there, was a particularly annoying and misplaced comment by someone who wasn't in attendance at GOP HQ on election night.

But the comment, as inaccurate as it was, is worth repeating and highlighting.

The comment stated that Steven Adler and Leon Davidoff had [the class] to go over to Democratic Headquarters and congratulate them on their victory and that Joe Visconti didn't join them [or have the class to do so].

First of all, neither Davidoff or Adler even approached Joe about going over to Democratic Headquarters, in fact - both of them decided to go over together, and didn't utter so much as a word to Joe about it. So the first issue is the accuracy of the claim that Joe didn't bother or want to show up with Adler and Davidoff. Pretty careless remark by someone who doesn't know the facts. (And I followed up with Joe personally on this point).

Second, and more importantly, it took about a half hour after the election was finished to see a breakdown in the GOP unity strategy. My hopes (and all West Hartford Republicans left with minority representation) is that somehow Adler, Davidoff, and Visconti can find a way to work together and present a united front to represent West Hartford taxpayers against what could be wrongfully interpreted as a mandate for higher taxes and more spending.

So thirty minutes after the ballots were counted, Davidoff and Adler abandoned Joe and ran down to their Democratic foes and began building the bridge to no-where. Not a phone call, but a physical appearance.

So here we go again. If Adler and Davidoff start to see Joe Visconti working independent of them, I guess they will need to be reminded that through intentional actions of their own, they helped set the precedent.

So this begs the question - did the Democrats pick up eight seats in this election, or only six? I guess time will tell. But one thing is for sure, the GOP is certainly off to a bad start.

Talk of West Hartford

The King recommends that you check out a new West Hartford blogsite that just opened its doors today.

It's always great to have more than one spot to discuss West Hartford issues, politics and community activism.

Best of luck to the editors at Talk of West Hartford!

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Former Lt. Governor Kevin Sullivan high tails it!

Funny story. We were out celebrating over a couple of beers at Plan B in West Hartford. The former Lt. Governor - Kevin Sullivan shows up with Carolyn Thornberry, sees Joe Visconti and high tails it out of there like a bat out of hell.

Talk about bitter. I guess he's too elite to be seen with drinking in the same establishment as the opposition. And we were going to invite them over for a friendly beverage. Oh well.

It must be very hard to be in angry mode 24/7 which is particularly bizarre after handing us a hammering defeat. Its sort of disappointing actually to see elder politicians act this way. I miss the old days when rivals could laugh and have a beer together after an election. Some people just can’t seem to do that in this era. It's become taboo in the new climate of extreme politics to be cordial. Sadly, this behavior tends to be a Democratic trend - I have a few stories to share at some point. It just makes me glad I'm a Republican.

Congrats to Joe, Steve, and Leon. Three great guys. It’s nice to see real Republican representation on the Council once again. We were disappointed that Seder didn’t get on - he deserved it since he worked day in and day out, standing in the rain and going door to door while others sat on their arses trying to get others to do their campaign work for them. We were lucky to get three with a blistering result like that. It was all in the organization (or lack thereof).
Notwithstanding, I’m happy with the results to some extent, but terrified the Chuck Coursey and the Dems think they’ve found a new mandate to raise taxes.

The new saga begins in two weeks. And its going to be lots of fun! Channel 5 ratings are going to go through the roof!

And we have a few surprises in store. So keep on watching!!

My post election analysis is being drafted. Check back later. WARNING: If you're a GOP member who isn't willing to accept criticism then maybe you aught to find somewhere else to hang out. I'm not for smoke and mirrors and there's a lot to say about this whole rediculous campaign.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Update on Schilling/ Congrats to Kevin Youkilis on winning the Gold Glove

Click here for the link to the Theo Epstein conference call on Schilling's signing

The details are here on Curt's Blog or here at MLB's Red Sox site.

Also, Kevin Youkilis won the Rawlings Gold Glove today for his perfect season at first base. Congrats Yooooooooooouuuuuuukkkkkkkkk!

RadioFree West Hartford makes the case for West Hartford Republicans!

This editorial by the Radiofree West Hartford says it better than I can say it. And its a better case than even some of our own candidates have made.

It's nice to know I'm not the only one who actually gets it.

Endless tax increases and making West Hartford affordable are the only issues at hand in this election. Everything else is secondary or pointless rhetoric.

The Democrats in this town are experts at masking the truth. Now they are brutally attacking Steven Adler since he's apparently ready to take a majority in the King Philip district. Pathetic.

Win, lose, or draw, I'm sure I'll have plenty of comments on the outcome about both sides.

Check back here tomorrow.

Beantown 9 Poised for Repeat Season! Sox Re-sign Schilling! reported that the Boston Red Sox have re-signed Curt Schilling

On the wire:

The Red Sox and Curt Schilling have reached an agreement on a one-year deal worth about $8 million in base salary with an additional $2 million in potential incentives, according to a report by ESPN’s Buster Olney.

The report, which did not cite sources, indicated that the deal was pending Schilling passing a physical. Schilling, when reached today via e-mail, confirmed that he underwent an MRI today.

Additional reports are that the MRI went fine. Also, the big talk in Orlando at the Baseball conference is that Schill was willing to take less money and a shorter contract in order to make this deal happen. This has not been the trend over the past few years - both Pedro Martinez and Johnny Damon chose money over loyalty. And you see how they were rewarded.

It's not always the money.

Let's hope the Sox make a big deal out of this.

Earlier this week the Sox exercised options on Julian Tavarez and Tim Wakefield.

Alright Sox, time to get Mikey Lowell back at third. You can do it!! As Big Papi said on this very topic - "make it happen, Theo!"

Monday, November 5, 2007

Hottest Political Mom Contest Results!

It was a race to the finish. But the results are in:

Read 'em and weep:

Theresa McGrath: 61%

Shari Cantor: 29%

Kelly Clark: 4%

Diane Mudge: 4%

Clare Kindall: 2%

Of course this is silly, and I couldn't believe that over 315 people actually voted.

My apologies to Essie Labrot, she should have been included in the poll from the start. She might have even had a chance of pulling out a win.

Thanks to all you neanderthals for participating.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Mayor Slifka and the West Hartford Democrats make fools of themselves

A very interesting tidbit was witnessed by those of us who were there at the Blue Back Square ribbon cutting ceremony… Richard Heapes, the BBS Developer, gets up and says, “[I met Joe Visconti this morning at 6:30 am, I told Joe - hey Joe it’s 6:30 in the morning, the sun is about to come up, so you’d better get back in your crypt.]”

Nice. Talk about classy.

Of course, the Democrats, not knowing any better, particularly the Mayor, banged their feet, hooted and hollered into a state of frenzy. And this is our Democratic leadership.

Was the comment rude? Yes.

Did it have any place at the ribbon cutting ceremony? No.

Did anyone notice? Good question.

But wasn't it nice of the Democrats to use the BBS ribbon cutting ceremony to take a cheap shot at a GOP candidate, and try to make it all political? What a world class operation, Mayor Slifka. You could have at least put a stoic look on your face instead of yucking it up. Instead you looked like a horse’s rump up there while the cameras were rolling.

And not that its important, but Heapes did see Joe at 6:30 am, but didn’t utter those words.
It was also good to glace over and see that Diane Mudge and Peter Martin looked equally as outraged.

If the shoe had been on the other foot and it was a Republican-led ceremony, the Courant and Democrats would have blown their stack. You know how it goes, though.

You know, Joe. With all the lawyers in town, you aught to give them some of their own medicine and sue the clown for defamation of character. Then again, they eat that stuff up. You might just get back at them by getting elected.

Also, it appears that when Scott Slifka was making introductions, he passed over Attorney General Richard Blumenthal. After initial introductions Slifka sat down, Blumenthal whispered in his ear which prompted Slifka to get right up and introduce the Attorney General. A gentle reminder, or a curt rebuke? We may never know.

In West Hartford, the Democrats will do anything to win an election. This is another sorry attempt to swipe what the polls show may be the highest vote getter on the Republican side.

RATS! West Hartford Taxpayers caught in the trap?

Most of you have probably heard about the West Hartford Rat infestation. If not, you can read about it here.

What's interesting is why the Town of West Hartford is paying a vendor, Terminix, a hefty sum to the tune of $60, 000, plus to eradicate rats from PRIVATE dwellings and structures between Caya and Flatbush Avenue.

Is this a case where Scott Slifka, Joe Verrengia, and the Democrats are trying to buy votes in Elmwood?

The whole story seems a bit odd, and for what its worth, nothing can be found in the town minutes about a vote appropriating funds for this purpose. Very strange indeed.

This is a catch-22 for candidates, with an election around the corner since Democrats aren't about to rat out their own, and yet Republicans and Independents don't want to appear callous about the plight of Elmwood residents either which would lead to additional votes for Dems.

Let's see who has the guts to bring this strange expenditure up after Election Day. And should we expect West Hartford to pay for termite and carpenter ant exterminations next?

Thursday, November 1, 2007

TAPS Ghosthunters Paranormal Show Review

Weird as it seems, a comment to my site prompted this entry to my blog. I get a lot of traffic to this blog because of Most Haunted, and GhostHunters/ TAPS searches. In a few searches my site pops up a the first web article (to which I can only say "sorry" to fans of MH and TAPS).

I'm a huge fan of paranormal shows that seem to be never ending on our cable television line up. Travel Channel, for example, inundates us with shows about haunted houses, haunted inns, haunted places left and right. In fact it seems that there are so many stories about ghosts and goblins that you'd have to wonder where the "travel" component fits in.

I guess they must do well in the ratings game since the theme never changes and people keep tuning in. Back several years ago, Travel Channel began carrying "Most Haunted" which quickly became a favorite show of mine - besides interest in ghosts and spirits, I also enjoy watching shows about old castles, old structures, museums, and history of the British Isles. Most Haunted has a reputation for having some staged activity and they fired a medium for faking a contact with an alleged ghost. I go into all of that in this post. But Most Haunted has a great staff and crew and the show is fun to watch - whether its choreographed or not. MH never fails the viewer to provide some entertainment and a laugh.

GhostHunters (or TAPS) is another paranormal show that airs on Sci-Fi Channel. It's sort of ironic that a show dedicated to "scientific investigation" of ghosts airs on the "SCIENCE FICTION CHANNEL" but there is humor in most things. I gave a pretty harsh review of TAPS show in general and a comical review of TAPS at Lisheen Ruins. I received some hate mail from some of their dedicated fans but that's perfectly understandable given the fact that TAPS has a paranormal cult following. Of course, it's nowhere near the size of the Most Haunted following which has a life of its own.

In a lot of ways, GhostHunters is a cheap imitation of Most Haunted. Most Haunted is directed and produced by Yvette Fielding and her husband Karl Beattie - two well-respected people in film and theatre. Just about every aspect of Most Haunted has a professional appearance - from the theme music to the camera coordination through out the show. TAPS on the other hand is a show that never seems to get off the ground. Between redundant clips that often reveal nothing such as Jason debunking mist for breathing, or endless minutes of watching them connect and disconnect wires - with the TAPS crew, it's amateur hour and a disappointing one at that

Moreover, for fans interested in seeing paranormal activity captured, most of the Ghost Hunter shows are a total bust. The fact that they waste so much time in the Reveal section of the show to tell someone they didn't find anything is beyond me. I think one of the worst episodes had to be the recent adventure in Salem. The only one that seemed to get something out of this show was Donna, who had a chance to relive her youth, but for the rest of us, it was one ugly ride to nowhere. No ghosts, no goblins, nothing. A big fat zero. And when TAPS can't even catch a ghost in Salem, MA, they might as well hang up their Proton Packs.

You'd have to believe GhostHunters/TAPS is on its last leg. Last evening they went back to the Sanatorium for a live Halloween special which featured ECW Wrestler Elijah as an assistant paranormal investigator. It's clear to everyone that TAPS has reached a new low by trying to mix pro wrestling with ghost-hunting. You have to wonder if TAPS realizes that viewer reaction was so negative to such a move. Or did Sci-Fi Channel impose the use of Elijah as a marketing stunt to either bring better ratings to Ghosts Hunters or viewers to ECW. Quite frankly, you'd think that the genre for both is entirely different so its a bizarre mix anyway.

Naturally, it took about two minutes for Elijah to "see something". After about an hour of this mess, and monitoring an accompanying website that didn't function properly, I decided it was time for bed. I kept hoping that Jason and Grant my disprove my theory that they are the two most incompetent ghost hunters on the planet, but alas they failed me. Instead of holding contests to add to staff, they should have a contest to replace themselves and their producer. It's God-awful television.

And don't get me wrong. Each week I root like heck for them to get it right. I still think one of the best paranormal episodes on television was a GhostHunters episode that featured a haunted lighthouse where they absolutely captured activity of something following them up and down the stairs. If anyone remembers the name of the location, please feel free to comment.

The biggest disappointment on Halloween night 2007 is that Travel Channel didn't team with Living TV and deliver us an episode of Most Haunted Live. Maybe you guys can get it right next time. Meanwhile, its time for Grant and Jason to get back to plumbing. Whoever thought Derek Achorah would upstage GhostHunters?

And yes, I carved the pumpkin in the picture. Thank God for easy designs.

Pics from the King's Halloween Red Sox tribute!

Yes, I actually carved these.

And with two Halloweenies like this why would anyone want to go out and trick or treat anyway?