July 16, 2015
Not a surprise that Speaker John Boehner has taken a very aggressive and harsh stand against the recent Iran Accord.
Boehner could be correct, although it would be a first for him.
Boehner has led the charge to spend untold fortunes — and has further wasted even more precious intellectual resources — fighting to repeal the Affordable Care Act (aka ObamaCare), all to no avail.
Each and every one of Boehner’s arguments on why the ACA would destroy the US economy has been refuted by facts — clear economic proof — which validate that we – as a nation – are on the right path. As recently as June, 19, 2015, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office projected that repealing the ACA law would COST some $353 Billion over the next decade.
Now, he wants to waste more of our precious resources on another foolish boondoggle?
It seems that Speaker Boehner has modeled himself after the storied “Chicken Little” — focused entirely on those possible events which might cause the sky to fall, rather than on the inevitability of change, and how to best embrace the future.
It is no wonder the Republican Party is in such a state of confusion and disarray.
August 16, 2013
Westchester County is known as the bucolic gateway to the Hudson River Valley. Located just north of New York City, Westchester has a plethora of attractions, including castles, mansions, historical sites, and the iconic Playland Amusement Park in Rye.
Westchester boasts thousands of acres of parks and nature preserves; world-class museums and performing arts venues; exclusive shopping, wineries and orchards; public gardens; excellent dining; and year-round, family-friendly fairs and festivals.
That’s what current Westchester County Executive Rob Astorino and his cronies would like the world to know and believe.
The real Westchester County consists of 45 independent communities on a land area of 450 square miles. Just under 1 Million people live in Westchester, and they are racially, economically and culturally segregated.
From the City of Peekskill (population 24,000) where 51% of the population is white, 14.5% live in poverty, and the median family income is $65,585; to the City of Rye (population 16,000) where 90% of residents are white, just 2.3% live in poverty, and the median family income is $210,824; the contrasts are dramatic.
Meanwhile, it is very clear: Current County Executive Rob “I cut your taxes” Astorino has no shame.
Much like Don Quixote jousting at windmills, Mr. Astorino loves to do battle with various federal agencies. As he stamps his feet and screams, “I want my Maypo”, he tries to divert attention away from the huge financial penalties Westchester County Taxpayers face because of his incompetence, inability to lead and inexperience managing an organization of any size.
The most recent revelation?
The County had been given a deadline of April 2012 to provide Ultra Violet treatment to the water in Westchester Water District 1 which serves White Plains, Scarsdale, Mount Vernon and Yonkers.
Career professionals in the County had developed solutions; Astorino allowed the progress afforded by the solutions to grind to a halt.
Now, we find out that the County has been in violation of the mandate to deliver clean drinking water for 16 months, with probable fines of $37,500 a day. 16 months x 30 days x $37,500 is $18 Million. That’s a lot of money!
Cryptosporidium is the pathogen that is often behind the syndrome sometimes known as “Montezuma’s Revenge.”
It is highly resistant to chlorine disinfection, which is the primary form of disinfection used at most water treatment plants.
As long ago as 1999, the US EPA published definitive research showing that UV treatment is the only reliable and effective treatment system against all pathogens, including Cryptosporidium.
It is somewhat surprising that CE Astorino would mess with folks in Scarsdale.
His predictable pattern of abuse and benign neglect tends toward Mount Vernon, Yonkers, Port Chester, Peekskill and New Rochelle. Those folks just don’t seem to make time to come out to vote, and they mostly don’t make campaign contributions.
Maybe his campaign advisors told him, “Don’t worry, boss. People in Scarsdale don’t drink tap water. They drink bottled water. They will never find out that we are sending them potentially dangerous water.”
Hopefully, some of our neighbors in Scarsdale who do vote will get a bit vociferous about the gamble Astorino and his cronies seem to be willing to take with the physical (and financial) health of fellow Westchester residents.
The Environmental Protection Agency filed a lawsuit against Westchester County this month after county officials refused to enter into a consent decree to resolve the violations.
The potential legal fees and fines are astronomical.
What is even worse?
The lack of UV treatment puts thousands of Westchester residents (the majority of whom are registered Democrats!) at extreme risk of serious illness or even death from drinking improperly treated tap water.
Pretty clever political strategy, I think.
If you can’t convince the other party you have a solid plan and strategy, then disable or kill them so they can’t vote.
Brilliant move, Mr. Astorino!
May 25, 2011
An article published in The Journal News, a Gannet newspaper serving the lower Hudson Valley, reported on an unfortunate incident involving Aron Rottenberg, who recently suffered third-degree burns to half his body.
As the story goes, Rottenberg had been ostracized by the Skver Hasidic sect that runs the Village of New Square because he did not worship at the community’s main synagogue, headed by Grand Rebbe David Twersky.
A letter distributed to the community in November 2010 by New Square’s leadership and rabbinical court warned that not worshipping at the main synagogue was a severe violation and that anyone in violation must be stopped from using the community’s facilities.
Sources reported that Rottenberg’s family had faced growing levels of intimidation in recent months, including broken windows in their home.
Protests outside the Rottenberg home calling on them to leave led to the family installing surveillance cameras.
On Sunday, May 22, Aron Rotteberg confronted a man carrying a rag soaked with flammable liquid behind his home on Truman Avenue and Rottenberg was severely burned during a confrontation.
Rottenberg is in serious condition at Westchester Medical Center in Valhalla but is expected to survive.
Meanwhile, as a country, we are spending Zillions of dollars and sacrificing thousands of our soldiers to death or permanent disability in Iraq and Afghanistan, and not more than 60 miles from Ground Zero, we have extreme religious fanatics engaged in early-stage ‘Hassidic Jihad’.
Today, they attack each other because of the PLACE where they worship.
Apparently, this is not even an issue of “what do you believe?” or “How do you live your life?”
What might happen tomorrow?
I’m concerned and angry, but not quite ready to fight personally.
Yet, our TAX DOLLARS are supporting this insane behavior: The fire district; The police; The district attorney; The public defender; The school district. Each of these entities is involved in this case, and it goes on and on.
I think it is inappropriate for the majority to be saddled with the costs of religious fanatics fighting over turf.
This really is no different from the Crips vs. Bloods, or any other iteration of gang behavior.
Best I can tell, this whole mess looks and smells like it has RICO implications.
Where is the US Attorney? The FBI?
If we are to support this circus with tax dollars, let’s get our money’s worth.