Monday, April 19, 2010

Dumb & Dumber: NorCo Dems Endorse Dertinger, But Not Callahan

In one of my favorite movies, Dumb & Dumber, Lloyd trades Harry's van in for a moped. They're in the middle of a road trip across the country, and still have to go up the Rockies and into Denver. In the Winter. When Harry finds out what has happened, he has this reaction. "Just when I thought you couldn't possibly be any dumber, you go and do something like this ... and totally redeem yourself!" Well, move over, Harry & Lloyd. After reading Rich Wilkins' report concerning the most recent back room dealings of Northampton County Dems, I can only conclude that they're auditioning for the lead in Dumb & Dumber III. Let me tell you the story.

In his eight long years at the helm of the local Dems, Joe "Bossman" Long has alienated Lehigh County Executive Don Cunningham, Northampton County Executive John Stoffa and state party boss T. J. Rooney. His penchant for preselection of candidates in smoke-filled bars has resulted in disaster after disaster at the polls. These include Charles Dertinger (Congress); Sam Bennett (Congress); Glenn Reibman (County Exec); and Ann McHale (County Exec). Our fearless leader's most recent trick was to manage somehow to lose all five at-large seats in November's County Council race, giving Republicans a first-ever 7-2 edge. Even Northampton County's bench is now Republican. As if that were not enough, Long has made at least three appearances before a statewide grand jury investigating deceptive campaign practices.

So on Saturday, when Northampton County Dems met in a smoke-filled Nazareth bar again, it should come as no surprise that only 24 committee people bothered showing up. Of course, it's likely that only a few were even notified. County Exec John Stoffa, who happens to be the highest ranking Democrat in Northampton County, was snubbed. I live just a block away, and considered crashing the party myself. But these local apparatchiks have a history of ejecting contrarians, even their own committeemen. I stayed away.

Obviously, it was mostly a gaggle of Joe Long sycophants, not Democrats. But even among this crowd, a dim light had gone off. Maybe they should think twice about telling the rest of us how we're supposed to vote. So Ladd Siftar, a former County Council member who sits on the state committee, moved that the local party should refuse to endorse anyone, even in the uncontested primaries. It passed, 13 to 11.

Huh?

That's right, bippy. Congressional candidate John Callahan, derisively referred to as the "boy Mayor" by state house candidate Charles Dertinger just a few months ago, made the trip up Nazareth Pike for nothing. He got piked after giving a speech to a few barflies. Does this mean that Dems support Charlie Dent?

The same thing happened to State Rep. Bob Freeman. He came up from Easton, gave a speech that went on even longer than Callahan's, has no primary opponent, and left Nazareth with nothing. Does this mean Dems support wingnut Ron Shegda?

It gets better. After refusing to endorse anyone, even candidates with no primary opponents, Bill Wallace made a pitch for the local party to endorse Charles Dertinger in the only local primary that actually is contested. That motion passed nearly unanimously.

Huh?

That's right, bippy. Frank Scagliotta, a popular slate belt coach and NCAA basketball official making his political debut, has been rejected in favor of a divisive candidate who is batting just one out of five at the polls.

I spoke to a wise Democratic veteran today, who laughed and told me, "Bernie, we don't make Democrats take intelligence tests."

And this is the proof. Fortunately, Long's machine has shot itself so many times that it has pretty much made itself irrelevant.

44 comments:

Donald said...

What a train wreck - so glad I am not part of that scene

Donald said...

What a train wreck - so glad I am not part of that scene

Bernie O'Hare said...

But it sure is fun writing about it, Donald.

Anonymous said...

You forgot to add Steve Barron to the Joe Long list. He was recruited by Joe Long, and served as the Joe Long Democratic treasurer. The Long machine worked tirelessly for his election to County controller. He worked for Ann McHale in the primary. Why the mis-information Bernie?

You claim to strive to be factual but you always let the facts slid when it affects one of your favorites.

Your claim of being factual is again shown to be a lie. Make all the excuses you want but in the class of Dertinger, McClure, Wallace and others sits Mr. Barron who is most definitely in the Long circle.

Try to be more factual in your postings. At least in fairness to John Schimmel who was a decent man betrayed by those he trusted.

Anonymous said...

The Long-Barron relationship is strained. Barron was going to run against McHale if Stoffa did not run.

Bernie knows this is true, so please don't make accusations about Barron.

Anonymous said...

If only to be judged by the results they effect, they are undercover Republican operatives.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Ahh, the 3 AM troll, with more disinformation.

1) Steve Barron was originally tight with Joe Longs and the LondDems. No question.

2) The LongDems did nothing for Steve Barron when he ran for Controller. He was on his own.

3) What elected Barron, and he won by just a few votes, was the discovery that Schimmel was using Severson. That came the weekend before the election, and a group of about 50 or 60 Republicans went out and removed all the Schimmel sins they had placed on his behalf and returned them to R HQs.

4) John Schimmel is a very nice man, but his use of Severson probably cost him the election.

5) Not only did Steve Barron refuse to work for McHale, but would have run against her had Stoffa decided not to seek reelection.

6) Barron came to this endorsement meeting to make a speech for Specter and told Long he was there for that reason. When it was time to hear from him, Long even refused to acknowledge Barron by name.

7) Your refusal to endorse candidates in uncontested elections is tantamount to an endosrement of their Republican opponents, moron. If I were really on the Dent campaign, I'd be drafting a radio ad right now playing mysterious music and using a deep voice to ask, "Northampton County Democrats refused to endorse John Callahan in the primary even though nobody was running against him. If the Democratic party won't endorse him against no opponent, should you?"

Anonymous said...

At least we know Callahan is not afraid to endorse.

He endorsed Spector this morning.

Bernie O'Hare said...

He's pretty unpopular in the LV blogosphere, but I like Snalren' Arlen myself.

Anonymous said...

Skank aint a dem, hes a republican bought and paid for by Gruclea to do his bidding. Out of the four cnadidates running, I would rank him last in experience, independence, and every other important area. Unfortunately, if he wins in the primary, i will be forced to vote for Emrick. OH GOD help us!

Bernie O'Hare said...

Just the way you refer to Scagliotta says a lot about you. I'm unaware that Rich has endorsed anyone in this race, but it's no surprise to me that you'd votre for Emrick, assuming you even live in the district.

Anonymous said...

You take Frank and combine it with Scag and you get skank. Bernie, You and I wernt born yesterday. Rich has been holding his hand from day 1. He's his guy! Both teachers willing to double dip. I wish there was a good candidate in this race, but there isn't. Frank is respected as a teacher and coach, but will NOT serve our best interests in HBurg. I will write you in, you'd do a better job than this bunch, and you can earn your first pension.

You cant keep putting lipstick on this pig

Bernie O'Hare said...

It is just as qwrong to call Scagliotti skank as it is to call Dertinger Dirt-bag.

I am amazed at the animosity towards school teachers coming from someone posting from the Germansville School District.

Host Name bngr-205-238-224-125-pppoe.dsl.bngr.epix.net
IP Address 205.238.224.125 [Label IP Address]
Country United States
Region Pennsylvania
City Pen Argyl
ISP Germantown School District

Would you care to explain?

I will forward this information to Rep. Grucela.

Anonymous said...

Fine, if you dont want truth with a little name calling, report me to the politcal police.
But again, Frank is not the answer,he is part of the problem.

Bernie O'Hare said...

This is Germantown, NY.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Would you care to explain why you are posting, in Pen Argyl, from the Germantown, NY, school district?

The host is listed as bngr-205-238-224-125-pppoe.dsl.bngr.epix.net

Bernie O'Hare said...

Gee, it suddenly got quiet in here. No worries. I'll call the Germantown School Distrrict to tell them how their server is being used. The number is still (518) 537-6281, isn't it?

Anonymous said...

Leave that guy alone. Whats the big deal? Worse has been posted on this blog with no threats of revenge.

Bernie O'Hare said...

The big deal is that everytime I post something about Rich Grucela, he is viciously attacked. Even Wayne Grube was attacked. Now this same person has come on this thread and attacked Frank Scagliotti, calling him a skank and noting that he's an evil teacher, too.

All of this is incredibly ironic bc the person doing this is doing so from a school district computer, and during the work day. It's also interesting that these comments may be coming from the Pen Argyl area.

Now who would be using a NY hosted school district PC or phone to post comments from the Pen Argyul area? I'd like to know. If it is one of the candidates fror Grucela's seat, people should know.

Anonymous said...

Boy, he really got under your skin. he must be on the right track. I didnt see anything about Grube though.

Bernie O'Hare said...

You have not been dealing with this angry troll as long as I. He attacked Wayne Grube right after he died. Rich Grucela himself came on this blog to defend his friend and has been attacked ever since. Whenever I post anything related to Rich, he is savaged, not just once, but over and over.

Rich is my state rep, and a damn good one. I sometimes bump into him and his wife. Neither of them deserves that kind of treatment.

In my most recent post, I checked to see who was trashing him, and lo and behold, it is someone from the Germantown NY school district. On school district time, this troll is trashing public teachers, and from the Pen Argyl area.

What troubles me even more is that this person, who refers to Scagliotti as "Skank", may have a political connection.

Who lives in the Pen Argyl area but has ties to NY?

Anonymous said...

Tom Severson?

Bernie O'Hare said...

The only thing I know at this point is that someone is posting from the Pen Argyl area, using Germantown School District as a host, during the work day. And I have called them.

People who post anonymously to attack others would do well to remember that I do have a statcounter, and will sometiomes use it. If it's not something you're willing to say to someone's face, you probably should think twice about doing so anonymously.

Anonymous said...

It is not a big surprise that the party endorsed Dertinger, he has been a active member for years. He is a Democratic State Committee member, a member of the executive comittee and the Slatebelt area chairman. He has hosted events for the party and other candidates and has been a workhorse for Democrats. Dertinger is in the only locally contested primary and he faces a challenger who started this year as a Republican. The really Dumb thing would have been to not endorse the real Democrat in a Democratic Primary.
This was no slight to Callahan this was a Primary endorsement and he is unchallenged. Callahan doesn't need to worry he knows he has the Party's support.

Anonymous said...

The Germantown poster's other issues aside, he/she makes a very valid point about another school teacher going to Harrisburg. This affects all of us, whether we live in that district or not (which I do not). One of the most pressing issues - if not THE pressing issue - is the coming SERS/PSERS pension crisis. It is not an attack on teachers to state that you believe they will not be objective and prepared to make the hard decisions necessary and required by the public. Someone eligible for multiple public pensions should be fair game, as they are part of the problem, and the last thing we should want is a rooster in the henhouse.

At best, they can abstain, but that seat is needed for someone who will undertake the mission of serious reform which can only originate in Harrisburg.

Al Joseph said...

There is only one problem: Usually, there are a lack of credible and qualified candidates. Most candidates that possess the perfect qualifications, do not apply because of the constant headache and scrutiny. And the pay stinks.

Bernie O'Hare said...

"It is not a big surprise that the party endorsed Dertinger"

No it's not. he has spent the last 8 years kissing Long's ass and doing everything he can to suppress any real democracy within the local Dem party.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Anon 5:53, You are basically saying that teachers are too tainted to serve in publkic office bc they will benefit from a pendion. Under this logic, no lawyer should ever be elected bc they write the law and half the other crazy laws on out books. A union guy like Dertinger. He's just there to serve labor and their incessant attempts to enslave the rest of us. So no union guys.

Pretty soon, nobody will be eligibel to serve in office.

Bernie O'Hare said...

"The really Dumb thing would have been to not endorse the real Democrat in a Democratic Primary."

Dertinger is a real Deam? You could have fooled me. This is a guy who told me, right after a public meeting, that he has no obligation to listen to anyone who does not own real estate. Does that sound like a Dem stance to you? This is a guy who worked against the one real Democrat in Northampton County - John Stoffa. He worked against a man intent on restoring honor and integrity to local government. Is that a real Dem stance?

Anonymous said...

Your spelling goes to hell when you get worked up.These comments really rattle you today. Take your meds

Bernie O'Hare said...

I am no typist and am losing my eyesight. I can spell, but cannot see or type. Instead of addressing the substance of what is written, you address typos.

Anonymous said...

Yes, Bernie. In the case of teachers, that is exactly what I am saying. There is ample evidence that they have little empathy for anyone outside their world.

I have seen non-public unions agree to concessions to save their company and their jobs. I have not seen that from the PSEA. Take a look at Saucon Valley. Their idea of concession is an annual raise in excess of three percent. Any attempt, ANY attempt to get a handle on the unsustainable expense of teacher compensation is met with the predictable "You don't care about your kids", "The best and brightest will leave" "If you don't pay, we'll go on strike" and other Chicken Little nonsense that would get your ass thrown out the door anywhere else.

And how do they get away with it? Because their right to strike -to use children as economic human shields- is guaranteed by statute. While other unions have that same guarantee, in the end, private sector unions always face the possibility that the business will simply close up shop. Not so in the world of public education. Their right of entitlement has been purchased by the PSEA with their support of those in the state legislature. When they get their own in, they won't even have to buy the vote anymore.

Bernie O'Hare said...

I understand your lament and can't say I disagree. In fact, your comment is an excellent post subject, and I'll run it tomorrow.

Let me make two observations.

First, I think it is wrong to blame all teachers for wha clearly is greedy behavior by some. Second, teachers win elections, especially in the smaller races.

Wayne Grube, a former teacher and coach, was always top vote getter. Now it's Peg Ferraro, another retired teacher. Diane Neiper was elected four years ago, and she's a teacher. That's just the way it is. Voters have not made the connection that you make.

Anonymous said...

Good deal. I know gov't is more the norm here, but schools are quasi gov and the bubble is upon us.

Hadn't seen you mention your vision issues before. Very, very sorry to hear that and please accept my sincere wishes for the best possible outcome for you.

Bernie O'Hare said...

My eyesight has really deteriorated over the last two years. It's weird. I can see at distances better than when I was a kid. But even with glasses, images get very fuzzy close up. They'll be fine one minute, then get blurry. This has been gradual, and I've only noticed it recently. I also have bumped into people who think I'm being rude, but I just don't see them or see them or, more accurately, misjudge how far away they are from me.

I have to get checked out soon. maybe I can get a nose job while I'm at it.

Sanctifying Grace said...

Bernie,

Not to alarm you, but that sounds like sugar or even blood pressure problems. Get that check out, asap. We have a priest down here that has those symptoms and that is directly related to his sugar. He was dumb and didn't get it checked out. He almost lost his vision completely.

Peace, ~~Alex

Anonymous said...

fah q!

Sanctifying Grace said...

Man, my grammar is horrible. Sorry. Too many term papers and Latin translations. One more month of school until this semester ends. I am dragging. Peace, ~~Alex

Anonymous said...

Bernie two things. One, Mr. Barron told Ann Mchale he would not run against her regardless of Stoffa. You can ask her yourself. Steve is a nice guy but he did support Ann in the primary. I don't like when people play both ends against the middle.

Second, I agree that posters should refrain from personal attacks but sometimes you just seem to go ape shit. I mean I know Rich Grucela and he knows in politics people take all kinds of shots. Rich would probably just ignore it and let it run off his back. The poster made an interesting point, sans the attack on Grucela. You should have just deleted him if you were so pissed. You really make your open forum much less open when you allow similar attacks on the likes of Dertinger and Pawlowski but become Sherlock Holmes and Judge Roy Bean when one of your political crushes gets banged.

It's your blog and you can do as you please. I think in this case you over-reacted because of your feelings about the person.

Just like with Steve, he is a smart politican but you are getting some shrewd political misinformation on his political history. I think it is important to be consistent with pols you like as with pols you dislike.


Randy

Bernie O'Hare said...

"Randy,"

I have deleted none of the attacks made against Grucela, so I've been pretty consistent. I made an effort to track this person because I can't post a single item about Grucela without that person posting at least ten comments viciously attacking him. It is unfair to Rich and his wife. It also diminsishes intelligent conversation.

The privilege to post anonymously is not a license to bash people personally, be it Grucela, Angle, or even Dertinger.

I rarely check my statcounter bc it is usually too difficult and time-consuming to do on weekdays. But I owed this to Rich.

Although the hate may roll off his back, his wife reads this blog and I know that the slime hurts her.

So who do you know who lives in the Pen Argyl area but has some kind of connection to the Germantown NY school district?

And "Randy," it is my blog. I am fairly tolerant of the bullshit regularly posted here, but I have my limits.

Anonymous said...

Rich was not personally attacked. His connection to recruiting scag was noted. And scag was called skank. If a politician can't handle that, they should go into another field. Can we expect Scag to be your new mancrush?

Bernie O'Hare said...

Rich was attacked, repeatedly, and in several posts about him, and by the same person who started in on him here. I'm tired of it.

Anonymous said...

How do u kno its the same person?

Bernie O'Hare said...

Because I checked my statcounter.