I love this lanky Alabama transplant, not so much for his views, but the way he expresses them.
Not everyone shares this view. One commenter to this blog had me rolling on the floor with this remark - "Billy Givens is a TROLL who waits for pre-pubescent girls to proclaim their love for you so that he can take advantage of them."
In truth, Billy's our grandaddy - the man who started it all. Long before the Internet or blogs became popular, he was distributing a newsletter on the "stage of Easton," jabbing away at mayors, schoolboards, governors and mainstream media. The Express Times and The Morning Call became The Excess Times and Morning Call Girl.
In addition to his newsletter, Billy used a bullhorn at Easton's centre circle and the courthouse stoop. And as we became more familiar with the Internet, Billy started the Lehigh Valley' first blog, BillyBytes, and was kind enough to publish essays from me and others with unusual points of view.
He's no essayist in the traditional sense. The truth and libel laws? Irrelevant. But his words paint pictures.
I've heard that instead of taking "chunks out of those who hold themselves up as models of probity," Billy's in a different kind of battle these days - a fight for his life. I hope he cheats the devil. If anyone can do it, he can.
I thought I'd leave you with a paragraph from one of his essays.
On December 18, 2001, in his last act as president of Northampton County Council, Wayne Grube and his fellow rat pack gnawed a hole in the wall connecting council chambers and Community and Economic Development Chief Vincent Dominach’s conference room. Through this hole, the rat pack rolled Michael Solomon’s $111 million wheel of cheese, reeking of Limburger, from council chambers into the conference room. Solomon fancied limburger because it comes from Belgium, home of the company that insures his $111 million wheel of cheese, at a premium cost to Northampton County taxpayers of an unauthorized $880,000. This room is the nest of the Northampton County General Purpose Authority (GPA). There, on December 19, the GPA rats, led by County Executive Glenn Reibman, gnawed and pawed at Solomon’s wheel of cheese. They broke it into pieces of varying size, suitable for distribution to their fellow scavengers in corporate Northampton County; e.g., bankrupt Bethlehem Steel’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and Chairman, Robert S. “Steve” Miller. The GPA gave Miller a $13.1 million piece of Solomon’s Limburger wheel. In its rush to adjourn, the council rats failed to authorize the $880,000 insurance expense, taxpayer money the GPA rats have spent in rank violation of Pennsylvania’s Municipality Authorities Act of 1941 as amended.
Truth? Maybe. Maybe not. Art? Definitely.