Monday, December 11, 2006

Ron Angle Seeks Third Term on Northampton Council Council

Photobucket - Video and Image HostingWhen he was first elected to Northampton County Council in 1999, I didn't care for the guy. He blustered that county officials had better stock up on body bags because he was taking no prisoners. His grammar was horrible. And worse of all, he's a Republican.

But Ron Angle quickly established himself as the county's pitbull. Heads rolled. Is he a bastard? You bet. Just listen to his radio show if you need any proof. But over the past eight years, at least on county issues, he has often been the sole voice of reason. While the rest of council rubber stamps tax breaks for a developer who is already wealthy, Angle will vote no.

Last Thursday, he offended other council members by "grandstanding" after a host of county workers made clear they're not being treated fairly. He's the only one who bothered to speak to them. "We actually run because of you. ... It's the core services of this county that we're in business for, not the craziness." This is nothing he hasn't said before, both on his radio show and during council meetings. And his words certainly cheered people up in the peanut gallery. But his council colleagues thought he was playing to the crowd. At one point, the usually exasperated Council Prez Wayne Grube told Angle, "You got your audience out there. Go back to your radio station."

As might be expected, Angle has powerful enemies in both major parties, from Elmer Gates to Glenn Reibman. They won't be happy to hear Angle is seeking a third term. Here's what Ron says.


In November 2006, the voices of the voters at the polls came through loud and clear. They told public officials to respect the needs and concerns of the people, and not to bow to special interests or use their elected positions to line their own pockets. Voters said they want open, responsive government. They want the least expensive government that can provide good, essential services. And they want to hear the truth from their elected officials, not political hogwash.

Unlike some members of Northampton County Council, who see their job as simply a stepping stone to some future position or as a way to promote a special agenda, I know and understand the importance of county government. Throughout my years on Council, I have always fought for the "little guy" and the taxpayer of Northampton County. I continue to be an outspoken advocate for those who have to foot the bills. I have never, ever voted for a tax increase.

Almost every day I hear from residents who tell me they appreciate my efforts and my willingness to fight for them. My goals are the same as they have been since I was first elected in 1999: to represent the best interests of the taxpaying residents of our county and to work toward more open, accountable, streamlined government.

Many important decisions lie ahead. Our tax dollars must be spent on essential county services first. We must constrain spending so we don't tax citizens out of their homes. Our challenges for the future are many. The prison expansion has already been declared inadequate. Our debt payments on the 2001 mega-bond are coming due. Open space must continue to be a county priority. You can count on me, as a member of Council, to continue to find and promote solutions to these challenges that are in the best interests of the taxpayers of this county.

There are those who wish I'd just shut up or go away. They'd like nothing better than to silence my voice because I'm the one who asks tough questions and shines the light on how our county government works. The anti-Angle contingent is fighting harder than ever this year to see that I'm not re-elected to County Council. They've started early and they're going to throw everything they have at me.

43 comments:

Mad batter said...

I like Ron, because HE IS A MISERABLE BASTARD! I hope he is on the board until he dies, because we need good government types, irregardless of political party. Now if only the Dems could recruit a couple of folks with his attitude.

Bernie O'Hare said...

You're right. Dems' best answer to Ron Angle is a Democratic Ron Angle. How many pols do you know who will host a controversial radio talk show while in office? Most from both major parties are "play it safe" types. He's pure gonzo. When he talks about state or national issues, I disagree with him most of the time. But on local issues, he is usually spot on. Jim Hickey or Bernie Kieklak are two Dems who could handle Ron.

Anonymous said...

The three council members I'll be working to oust from office next year are District 1 un-representative J. Michael Dowd, District 2 un-reprentative Ann McHale, and District 3 un-representative Lamont McClure.

The last of this triumvirate was never even elected to county council. On the contrary, he lost his bid for an elective seat on that august body in the 2006 general election but was defeated.

No matter. When the incompetent County Executive John Stoffa appointed at-large council members Mary T. Ensslin and Michael Corriere to his corrupt administration, his Democratic cronies on council seized the opportunity and filled the vacancies with McClure and Anthony "Tony" Branco, also defeated in the 2006 general election.

By so doing, Stoffa and his council cronies passed over at least three excellent candidate, Tim Cuevas, Bruce Gilbert, and Doug Dodge.

But as for District 4 representative Ron Angle, we are going to retain him in his seat.

As you know probably better than anyone who attends county council meetings, I have support Ron from the start of his council career and in his 2001 campaign challenging the ineffably corrupt county executive incumbent Glenn Reibman - who, now defeated and disgraced, has been rewareded by Governor Ed "Fast Eddie" Rendell to the Delaware River Joint Toll Bridge Commission, also unspeakably corrupt.

P.S.

I displayed my feelings about Ron on my www.billybytes.com website in an essay titled "Springtime Follies."

In fact, you were outraged that the essay compared Ron to Jesus Christ.

So I'm happy to see your change of heart about Ron since he, Like Jesus, fights for the "meek," whom I truly believe, as does Ron, will "inherit the earch."

The "Springtime Follies" essay opens the description of the Roman centurians gambling for Jesus's robe at the foot of the cross.

Ron and I both oppose Rendell's, John Purzel's, and Vince Fumo's "legalized" gambling cansinos and racinos, Act 71, and its corollary, Act 72, the specious "back-end" voter refendum that the the gambling avenue would generate to support our failing public schoos.

Anonymous said...

I can't believe anyone would support Angle-he's a blowhard, plain and simple. He doesn't truly care for the employees of NC, he only cares for whatever will give him the most publicity. His "speech" on Dec. 7 was ridiculous, I couldn't believe anyone clapped for him. He talks out of both sides of his mouth. He's for the "workers" or the "little guys", but he was one of the first (if not the first) to raise the salaries of just his staff--Hello, there are more that 3 workers running this county! He's never voted for a tax increase, because he looks out for #1 and knows he can use that to further his career. He hasn't "moved on" from county council, because he wouldn't get elected. Why the people up north keep voting for him makes one wonder. The Angle I've had the pleasure of dealing with through my job is vindictive, unreasonable and cares about himself, plain and simple.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Anon 1:23 or Billy Givens,

Although I think Ron Angle should be elected to a third term, I would hardly compare him or anyone to Jesus Christ. That's just nuts.

Julian Stolz said...

Bernie,

Is funding going to be a problem for Ron? If he needs any help, he should contact Godfather Guzzardi. I've already talked to Bob about Ron and given him rave reviews!

Bernie O'Hare said...

To county residual employee:

Of course Angle voted to increase the salaries of county council staff. In fact, I'm pretty sure it was his idea. But something you don't get, and it is really shortsighted, is that you should be applauding these payraises, not condemning them. County council staff got 18-20% and detectives were awarded 40% in arbitration. And they all deserve it. That does not mean that you do not deserve a raise. And what it also means is that you should expect a high payraise, too, not the 3.3% offered by the county.

As far as your personal animosity is concerned, you're by no means alone. He is reviled in many corners, so it should not surprise me that some courthouse workers dislike him. The fact remains that he is the sole person from either the executive or legislative branch who had the courtesy to address workers who came to say how they feel. And the remarks he made were remarks he has made before.

He's not running for county exec. And why should he "move on?" Do we only elect people who are politically ambitious? He's running for the same job he has done effectively for the last 8 years. Like him or not, he serves his purpose. He asks questions that would not otherwise be asked. Now you make certain claims based on "personal dealings." And you have a point. He can be vindictive, unreasonable and egotistical. But we're far better off with him than we are without him.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Julian, I don't think Angle has a funding problem.

Anonymous said...

Bernie,

You're right. Ron Angle ain't Jesus Christ.

Jesus no doubt forgave the Roman centurians gambling for his robe at the foot of the cross.

Ron Angle, by contrast, has condemned gambling in the Moravian Christmas City of Count Von Zinzendorf and continues to condemn it.

As I vowed to Bethlehem Mayor John Callahan and the city's council in the Brougal Middle School, we Christians and the devout of other faiths are not only going to defeat casino gambling in Bethlehem and secular sacred sites like Gettyburg; but we're going to go on to repeal Act 71 and 72.

Ron is a person of religious conviction. The theme song of his WPGA 1100 radio call-in/talk show is, as you well know, the "Battle Hymn of the Republic."

And as you also know, many religious leader of history have been reviled, like Oliver Cromwell and Martin Luther, and Martin Luther King Jr, the last of whom's birthday we celebrate next month.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Aonon 3:53 = Billy Givens,
"we Christians and the devout of other faiths are not only going to defeat casino gambling in Bethlehem and secular sacred sites like Gettyburg; but we're going to go on to repeal Act 71 and 72."
******************************

Well, good luck with that, then.

Frankly, I'm sick of the very unchristian vitriol hurled at gambling advocates.

And the force of your logic is quite underwhelming. 1) Ron is "religious." 2) Religious leaders like Oliver "let me kill a few nonbelievers" Cromwell were reviled. 3) Ron is reviled. THEREFORE, Ron is a religious leader like Oliver Cromwell?

Anonymous said...

The Northampton Council meeting of July 6, 2002, at which I declared war on the county for its profligate floating of bonds and other reckless spending like drunken sailors, was also the meeting at which at which the faithful presented council with a petition containing more than 1,000 signatures.

The petition demanded that the Ten Commandments plague in Courtroom One never be removed even under order of the courts.

Concilman Ron Angle proposed a resolution supporting the faithful. But Councilman Michael Corriere objected, arguing that he did not want council to "embarrass" President Judge Robert Freedberg.

Sadly, a majority of council's members listened to Corriere and rejected Angle's motion to the disappointment of the faithful - and at the same time revealing to them its own absence of faith of the sacred principle of the separation and independence of governmental power.

Once again, council chose instead to separate the faithful from the rest of the county.

Anonymous said...

I'm less concerned here with the syllogistic logic of Aristotle that I am with the ethical and moral teachings of Jesus Christ - who has led me in my fight against legalized gambling since on January 3, 2006, that I asked Northampton County Council to hold public hearings on the issue.

I have never wavered or lost my faith that not only will a gambling casino not come to the Moravian city of Count Nicholas Von Zinzendorp, but also that Act 71 "legalizing" gambling in Pennsylvania will be repealed.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 8:36

I was talking with God last night and she told me to bet it all on black.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 8:36

I was talking with God last night and she told me to bet it all on black.

Anonymous said...

You won't have to defeat McHale in her Council run.

She isn't going to run for Council.

Now - on to more interesting things. Where does God stand on the privitization of the Turnpike?

Bernie O'Hare said...

Demothug & 9:02,

Thanks for the humor. I needed it. For everyone's info, Billy Givens is the anonymous poster at 1:23, 3:53, 8:10 & 8:36. He has his own blog, but hasn't posted there since 12/1. Instead, he has monopolized this one with numerous irrelevant comments.

I like Billy's writing style. But he has a tendency to drift. In his posts today, he tells us that it's OK to be illogical so long as we're doing it for Jesus. He tells us of his Holy War, aka Crusade, aka Jihad, against Northampton County. He ridiculously compares Jesus Christ to Ron Angle.

But what really pisses me off is his favorable reference to Oliver Cromwell, a bastard who raped Ireland and murdered its inhabitants. My last name is O'HARE for a reason, and I've read and heard the stories about that despot.

Bill's anti-gambling stance is just an attempt to shove his "Christian" religious views down our throats. And then he plays the stupid Ten Commandments card.

When I think of all the things that are wrong in this county, the ten commandments plaque doesn't even make the top 100. That is a nonissue that detracts attention away from the real problems in this county. Billy will sell that crap to Angle, but I'm not buying into his horseshit. Sell that to Santorum.

We have workers who are on frickin' food stamps and who have seen no raises in 4 years, and Billy wants to rail on about Oliver Cromwell, the ten commandments, Jesus Christ and the evils of gambling.

Billy, my site was briefly banned from the county server as a possible porn/hate/violence site. I worked hard for that honor. But I'll be damned if you turn it into some evangelical movement. Save your religious fervor and illogical arguments for your own frickin' blog.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Anon 9:02, That's bc she's running for exec. And if her nose is in the air now, I can't way to see the new levels it reaches once Lady McHale assumes the throne.

Chris Casey said...

God likes Bingo. ask us Catholics!

Bernie O'Hare said...

Chris, Can you believe that Billy would dare come onto an Irishman's blog and start saying nice things about Oliver Cromwell? I'm challenging that asshole to a duel at sunrise.

LVDem said...

wow... back to topic (though it's so tempting to make another observation about Billy)

Ron Angle is good for open government, but he is terrible for government that functions in civil society. His "lob bombs first" is destructive to politics. Frankly, he's a demagogue. He plays to people's emotions and frankly uses over the top rhetoric to advance his personal agenda (which is to look smarter than everybody else in the room). PA had somebody like that in the US Senate and we threw his ass out on the curb in Virginia. Ron will win, there is little doubt of that in my mind, mainly b/c he runs in a part of the county that craves his antics. If he had to run county wide, he'd be a marked man.

Anonymous said...

Your posting about Ron Angle has elicited at least two divisive comments thus far fomenting dissention between the county's northern tier - the District 4 Slate Belt - and the rest of the county.

Lvdem in his latest comment has condemned Anlge as a "demogogue," the lable Bethlehem City Council-elect Karen Dolan gave Angle at council's first public hearing by that body on July 5, 2005, relative the casino gambling issue.

She worked with Mayor John Callahan and council presient J. Michael Schweder to remove Arcelay from council because he opposed gambling.

Anonymous said...

Ron Angle's a fat ass hypocritical blow hard period. Is this photo his mug shot from when he stole sweat socks at a Jersey shore mall a few years ago?

Anonymous said...

Two reasons why Ron Angle is bad for NC Governmet. First, what has he actually acomplished? Please, Bernie, give me a list of something that he has actually gotten done, other than hearing himself talk and seeing his name in the newspaper?

The funniest thing I can remember is right after he lost his bid for county executive to Riebman, he went on a crusade to raise thr pay for the County Executive, using the logic that there were no good people to run for the post. For once he was right, the best the Republican Party could do was give us Ron Angle. He is so short sighted that he didn't even realize that he was dissing himself.

Second, the man is a racist, or bigot, or what ever you want to call it. For those of us who have not been here long enough to remember, or conveniently forgot, Ron Angle was kicked off the airwaves of 770AM for his racist views. Specifically saying that Blacks should go back to Africa on a boat and that the Jews control the government. What would Jesus have to say about that?

Bernie O'Hare said...

Anon 9:17,

Your criticism is a fair one. There was no excuse for what Angle did on WAEB, 790 AM, several years ago. I believe he can be insensitive. I discussed the issue with him many times. I don't think he's bigoted, but have no quarrel with others who feel differently.

As far as accomplishments are concerned, there have been several. First, he has striven to make local government more accountable. He pushed the county so that it always has two months in its cash reserve. That way it doesn't have to borrow money to meet day to day expenses.

He has promoted changes in the administrative code that require council to approve contracts in excess of a certain amount.

He has promoted a plan to have taxes frozen on farmers whose properties are already in farmland preservation.

He has encouraged the county to get back to the basics. It has several hundred bridges and he has been pushing for years to have more attention paid to their maintenance.

He has been a promoter of regionalization through councils of government.

The criticism gets the headlines but he actually dopes get things done. But he can't do it alone. And sometimes he has a rough time getting other council members to go along with him because he can be very destructive in his criticism. So although I think Angle has done positive things, he could get even more done if he played nice.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Anon 8:52, Yes, Angle was charged several years ago w/ shoplifting socks in Jersey. He was ultimately convicted of eluding a police officer or something. These were all summary offenses - the equivalent of a parking ticket. Now if you really think that a multimillionaire absconded with sweat socks in New Jersey, then by all means make it a major campaign issue. If you want to know how that tactic works, ask Tony Rybak or Jenn Mann.

Bernie O'Hare said...

LVDem, I read your criticism during a break in the show and then during the show itrself, and Angle admitted you had some good points. But he said he only lobs a few bombs.

Anonymous said...

I'm convinced the multimillionaire Angle shoplifted socks in NJ, which is very disturbing, given that he is a mulitmillionaire. Coupled with the fact that this county councilman was convicted of eluding cops in connection with his shoplifting charge makes Angle & his history even that much more disturbing.
-Anon 8:52

Bernie O'Hare said...

Anon 12:36,

These offenses were summary offenses, the equivalent of a parking ticket. And the only charge involving the potential for dishonesty, i.e. shoplifting, was dismissed. Those are the facts. Had he pleaded guilty to shoplifting, it would be a different story. But if you feel some compelling need to make this an issue, I'm not stopping you.

Anonymous said...

The "equivalent of a parking ticket." Whatever....

Anonymous said...

Ain't it funny how multimillionaires can get those more serious charges dropped down to convictions that are equivalent to parking tickets? Ya gotta love America!

Bernie O'Hare said...

It never was a "more serious charge". Angle was charged with shoplifting sweat socks in Jersey. That happens to be a summary offense and is the equivalent of a parking ticket in the eyes of the law. In other words, had Angle pleaded guilty, it would have meant nothing. It could not be used against him in litigation to show he was dishonest. But as it turns out, those charges were dismissed and Angle pleaded to another summary offense involving eluding a cop or driving too fast or both. That also means nothing in the eyes of the law.

Now frankly, if I was a cop and someone stole sweat socks and then led me on a merry chase,, he'ds be pleading to the shoplifting charge or going to court. The fact that Angle pleaded to the "chase" or whatever happened leads me to believe this was a misunderstanding of some sort.

Now you're perfectly welcome to take these summary offenses and try to turn them into major felonies. I don't like attacking people on this kind of crap, but you can make this into a mountain of sweatsocks if you so desire. But I have a feeling this could backfire on you.

Now you want to condemn America and our system bc Angle was not tarred and feathered. It sounds to me like you've already prejudged him. And who's the prejudiced one?

Anonymous said...

Ron Angle's the prejudiced one. Ain't that why he got kicked off the air a while back?

Bernie O'Hare said...

Anon 1:29, If I believed Angle were prejudiced, I could never support him for anything. I do think he is insensitive at times.

A person is prejudiced when he prejudges another - makes a jusgment without the facts. I believe your accounting of the sweatsocks incident reveals you have prejudged Angle and are therefore prejudiced against him. You won't let anything get in the way of your prejudice either - whether it's the facts or our criminal justice system. So if you want to see the face of prejudice, perhaps you should look in a mirror.

Now I've got to go and try to make some money before I have to start shoplifting bc I'm no multimillionaire.

Anonymous said...

Personally I couldn't give a rat's ass about Ron Angle. I just like seeing you get your knickers in a knot, Bernie. And it seems way easier to do just after you've been in Mr. Angle's company.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Anon 1:46, Thanks a lot.

Anonymous said...

When Angle ran against Glenn Reibman for county executive in 2001 and the two debated during the campaign in the State Theatre, Angle won the debate hands-down.

Regrettably, no one in the county knew that except those in the theater. Its executive director had announced publicly that the debate would be broadcast over WAEB-FM radio.

Moments before the debate began, she appeared on state and announced that the debate would not be aired "due to technical difficulties."

The burning issue of the campaign was the illegal General Purpose Authority's illegal $111 million megabond, and Reibman supporters like Brown, who received something like $80 million of the bond money for ermine-covered toilet seats in her executive offices also benefited from the evening's "technical difficulties."

Those of us who attend Northampton County Council meetings know the score.

Why do I sense that most of the commenters to your blog postings are not numbered among county council-meeting attendees?

If they did, they would know that Angle's colleagues routinely muzzle him by failing to second his motions, for the intended purpose of stifling discussion and debate - and a vote that could come back to bite them in the ass come re-election time.

Anonymous said...

Scusem moi,

The State Theatre received less than a million dollars from the $111 million bond, not 80 million, for the ermine toilet seat covers and gold-plated fixtures.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Anon 5:26 & 6:00, I believe the State Theatre received only about $700k and promised to produce some shows for school kids.

LVDem said...

For the record, a motion does not need to be seconded. If Angle had good relationships with his fellow councilers, he might get those motions from time to time. But he's burned down every bridge imagined and wonders why people can't stand him. Yes, some of it is certainly the fault of other people, but Angle feeds it more than anybody I've ever seen.

LVDem said...

And to me, that's not good government. Open government and good government are very different.

Anonymous said...

Bernie,

As regards Ron Angle, many of your commenters seem to me to embrace the axiom of U.S. Congressman from Texas, Sam Rayburn, who for mamy years the Speaker of the House of Represemtives.

That axiom was, "To get along you go along."

That's still the problem today with government, at all levels.

It is a problem that Angle cares about deeply and tries valiantly in the face of great opposition to change.

Those of us like you, who attend Northampton County Council meeting regularly (until, in my case, I was diagnosed with colon cancer in April of this year), and the critiquing of those meetings afterward at the Tic-Toc restaurant in Palmer Township or around the kitchen table of John and wife Rosina Todaro, also of Palmer, while having coffee and enjoying her home-made suprasotta, eggplant, and cracked olives appreciate Angle's ready wit, homespun humor (much of it barnyard), story-telling skills of this Slate Belt raconteur.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Anon 9:50, aka Billy: My goodness, Billy. Thanks for your relevant and well-stated comment.

LVDem said...

I'm not suggesting you go along to get along. I"m saying you do it in a civilized manner. Instead of lobbing bombs and tirades, try expressing your point. If that doesn't work, you express it to the papers. Something I like about John Cusick is that he isn't lobbing bombs but you know when he disagrees.