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Nazareth, Pa., United States

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Rendell, Joined by Local Political Hacks, Continues Vote Quest on 9/11

Yesterday was the fifth anniversary of the day we were attacked at Twin Towers. Americans also lost their lives in nearby Shanksville and at the Pentagon. Yet on this somber occasion, the Guv' and political hacks like former exec Glenn Reibman celebrated with a ribbon cutting ceremony for the Riverport project, beneficiary of county and state money. Mayor Callahan is thrilled the project will attract artsy fartsys and Jersey commuters. It will make campaign contributor Lou Pektor even more wealthy.

The Lehigh Riverport is one of the corporate welfare projects spawned by Northampton County's controversial $111 million megabond. It's sad that so soon after the darkest day in our nation's history, Ed Rendell and a bunch of local political hacks would trivialize that tragedy with a ribbon-cutting ceremony designed to do nothing more than attract votes.

I still plan on voting for Rendell, who tried vainly to explain away his appearance. This ceremony demonstrated callous disregard for fellow human beings. That's typical for Reibman, but I expected better from Rendell.


Anonymous said...

I looked at the troll definition, and saw the words, "sock puppet"
Looks like your F U buddy probably has a penis envy problem. Bernie, his postings are actionable, and they are traceable to a server.
I have this hunch you are going to find them coming from a government facility in Northampton county. Just a hunch, and there fore, I must remain,....

Bernie O'Hare said...

I think it's one of my millions of former lovers.

Anonymous said...

I can't believe these guys would have a celebration on September 11. What were they thinking?

Anonymous said...

many, including moshki, refuse to vote for either 'Fatmouth Eddie' or 'Lynnie The Sleaze'.

Anonymous said...

I think I saw FU at the Rendell ribbon cutting. He wants a job as a dealer in the new casino.As soon as he gets the rest of his teeth and finds a pair of shoes, they'll interview him.

DB said...

I agree Rendell's timing was bad. September 11th shouldbe reserved for a day of remembrance and/or clerical desk work for our governor.

Unfortunately, I will have to disagree with you Bernie regarding the Merits of the Riverport. As long as we feel it is ok to subsidize sprawl to the ridiculous degree we do without criticism you will never hear a pep from me complaining about the state chipping in a bit to make things happen in the cities.

Thank you Governor Rendell for chipping into the Lehigh Riverport and the Lehigh Valley's cities!

LVDem said...

to be fair, Bernie picks on the subsidization of sprawl quite well. He's very consistent in his view that gov't shouldn't do economic development. However, the reality is that with people like Doug Reichley happy to accept the checks from developers, those subsidies will continue. We are then faced with an undesirable choice: accept the status quo and allow sprawl to continue while downtowns struggle or subsidize urban investment opportunities.

For the people on the outside of gov't it's easy to say what the answer is but the bottom line is that the developers own Harrisburg. A hands off approach is simply not an option under the current situation. Yes work to remedy that situation, but I don't think some of our cities can wait another 10 years for that to happen. Personally, I think it's something that needs to occur concurrently, not in place of.

Anonymous said...


I noticed that you managed to tear yourself away from reading aloud the names of the dead at the Twin Towers to post your blog yesterday.

Does that make you "insensitive" or just a hypocrite?

There is not an American who did not recall where he or she was on that day 5 years ago. And in their own way, they each relived the great waves of fear and sadness they felt when the Towers fell. But yesterday they also harbored hope and optimism that our great strength as a country and as a people will prevail against the forces of evil.

We need to do more than pledge allegiance to the flag--we need to set aside our partisan differences and all of the other trivial things that divide us and pledge allegiance to each other as Americans to do whatever it takes to defeat terrorism. And sometimes that means carrying on our "normal" day-to-day duties and responsibilities and refusing to let those evil bastards win!

Bernie O'Hare said...

To Anon 10:31, Of course I'm insensitive! All you have to do is read one or two posts and you'll know that. I'm also a hypocrite at times. I'm very rough on pols, maybe too rough, over things that don't bother a lot of other people. So you have a valid point.

Yesterday, I posted twice on my blog. I also went to work. And I didn't stop even once to offer a prayer for 9/11 victims. But then again, I'm not the governor.

I have no problem with Rendell or any other government official doing his normal office duties on a day like 9/11. I think attending memorial services is entirely appropriate. But a ribbon-cutting ceremony? A celebration?

Come on! That's just plain tacky. Don't you see that? That's not "normal" day to day activity. And during an election cycle, it's shameless politicking on the very day that people were senselessly slaughtered. Let the ribbon-cutting wait a day. If Rendell can't make it any other day, do it without him, but on another day.

I like Rendell. I plan to vote for him. He's a good man. But Geez, don't you see how callous this was? Please don't give me the crap about setting aside our partisan differences, etc. That's coming from a spin machine. Just be honest. It was bullshit. Whoever advised him to do that should have his head examined. Don't try to justify what can't be justified.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Damien, Thanks for your comment. I want to thank Anon 10:31, too. In my book, public funding of private enterprise is corporate welfare. You can justify it in the cities a little more than in the 'burbs, but it's still a waste of money in my opinion.

But that's just my opinion. You may be absolutely right. And those who support the so-called public-private partnerships may be right on the mark. And I would never condemn a pol who disagrees with me over this issue, where I am in the distinct minority.

But this post is not a condemnation of economic development. It is a condemnation of a frickin' ribbon-cutting ceremony on the 5th anniversary of the day we were attacked. It was a stupid thing to do, even from a political point of view.

Anonymous said...


Don't you see? Even W. and Laura dropping a wreathe into the reflecting pools was part of the "spin machine"!

And W's prime-time speech? THAT was callous! You have a sitting President with a 36% approval rating calling for Americans to "come together"? The only way he can save Republican candidates from a mid-term slaughter is to rally his base around the flag!

Rendell wasn't dancing at a disco, rooting for the Eagles, or whooping it up with strippers on his campaign bus! He was DOING HIS JOB. He pulled his campaign ads off TV (as did Casey, Swann, and Santorum) out of respect. He attended the Flight 93 memorial. He openly wept at a huge event for our PA National Guard the day before!

I admired W. 2 years ago when he hugged that teen-age girl on the streets of NYC who lost her father on 9/11. I didn't vote for him, but I admired his compassion toward that 1 suffering child. He made me proud to be an American that day. I respect him as our President and I realize that he did not ask for the fallout from 9/11 to be his legacy.

That being said, I pray that I will NEVER become as cynical as you are!

Bernie O'Hare said...

You know, I agree with you about Bush. I didn't watch the memorial service but the accounts I read certainly make it look like he was trying to use this tragedy to boost his popularity.

Rendell was wrong, too. You just don't have a ribbon-cutting celebration with a campaign donor and local pols on 9/11. Is this something we really need to argue?

Please don't get me wrong. I really admire Rendell. He has my vote. But I'm one of those who can tell when the king in his underwear.

As far as being a cynic is concerned, I'm afraid my problem is worse than that. I'm actually an idealist.

Perhaps I'm being too tough. You may be right. It certainly could have been worse. It could have been a fundraiser. But I thought it was in poor taste.

Bernie O'Hare said...

To Anon 11:52, At Keystone Politics, there's a link to Baer's latest column. He doesn't mention the wreath but is highly critical of Bush using a tragic occasion to lift his sagging popularity. I think that criticism is apprpriate. I think it is equally wrong to conduct a ribbon cutting ceremony that day as well.