Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Sherwood to settle

So Don "Stroke'em and Choke'em" Sherwood wants to settle the lawsuit brought by his plaything Cynthia Ore. She alleges she was U.S. Rep. Don Sherwood's lover and is seeking $5.5 million in damages for what she alleges were repeated beatings that seriously injured her physically and emotionally during their five-year "close romantic and intimate personal relationship."

You can read more at the Times-Tribune special coverage including the details of the lawsuit.

Another great resource is Sherwood Watch published by Steve Peacock.

He obviously wants to get this behind him. In his defense this does sound like extortion. He's a rich prominent man who made a mistake. However he is a public figure and lines up with the family values crowd who wants to tell the rest of us how to live our lives. It is always entertaining to see a hypocrite twisting in the wind.

Skrep is out

From the CV:

Greg Skrepenak has opted not to tackle a run for Congress, but hasn't ruled it out as a possible goal down the road.The Luzerne County commissioner chairman, who previously considered going after the seat of U.S. Rep Don Sherwood in the 10th Congressional District, wrote to the national Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee Tuesday that he changed his mind.

It seems my friend Bill Fitz efforts at Stop Skrep paid off. I' sure the Chris Carney campaign looks on this as good news. I'm not so sure. A contested primary would help increase the name recognition of the eventual winner. As long as they did not tear each other apart and focused on bashing Sherwood it would have been a plus. I know the down side is they would have to spend money that they would rather use in the general election. A primary would show that people think Sherwood is vulnerable and want to take him on. I haven't seen any polling on Sherwood lately but his negatives have to be up there.

Local blogger Dr. Rick over at The American Check-Up talks about Skrep's Blind Ambition. Sure he is ambitious and should be. Most people I know that are interested in politics would love to be President. I always worry about the politician that wants to be a councilman forever and not move up. If you aspire to higher office you need to keep your nose clean and do a good job in the one you have. Unfortunately Skrep and Vondy have not done a good job.

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

I like this guy

He comes across as a Barry Goldwater conservative. Hold up your hand and say stop. I probably would not vote for him but I respect his views. He is not trying to shove religion down your throat as many Republicans are set on doing. A long time ago I voted for Peg Luisik for Governor. She did well, if I remember she got abou13 % against Singel and Ridge. Her issue was abortion but she had a good grasp of everything else that was going on in the state government. The thing that sold me was she was on with Fred Williams one day and she made more sense than any politician I have ever heard. We missed our chance; she would have been a great Governor.

Jim Panyard says he is clear-eyed about the state of affairs in Pennsylvania and the country, and he doesn't like what he sees."The answer to each and every problem is more money and more programs," said Panyard, who retired yesterday as president and CEO of the Pennsylvania Manufacturers Association."And never are the programs eliminated. You got to have somebody put the brakes on. I think government's role is to preserve and protect, not to control and confiscate."

Thanks to Grassroots for the info.

Monday, August 29, 2005

Everything is free

Everything is free. We don’t need more taxes to pay for the cost of the war. We don’t need more young people to sign up for the army. We don’t have to cut down on our gas consumption. Everything can go on as at it has always.


Bill Moyer, 73, wears a "Bullshit Protector" flap over his ear while President George W. Bush addresses the Veterans of Foreign Wars. (AP Photo/Douglas C. Pizac)

Read the whole story here. I have to get me some of those. Every time the guy speaks he makes my teeth hurt. Thanks to Liz over at Blondesense for pointing this out.


The site has been getting allot of spam the last week or so. The host program Blogger suggested adding word verification for comments as way to block the automated junk. I added it to the comments section and we will see if it makes a difference. It's a little clumsy and adds a step but it will hopefully stop the spam. Let me know what you think.

Update on Chris Carney for Congress

I received an email from Chris Carney while I was away stating he will announce his candidacy for U.S. Congress on September 7, 2005 at 5:00 p.m. on the courthouse green in Montrose, Pa. His website, Carney for Congress, has been updated with his bio, pictures of his family and positions on the issues. He has a national security background, is a Naval Reserve officer and college professor. His web site has a professional look and hopefully he can raise the money to get his name out. I checked the DCCC website but a search for info on him came up empty. All candidates have to file quarterly financial reports with the FEC and the next one is due September 30. That will give an indication if he is attracting the financial support he will need. I can't make it to Montrose on Wednesday but I hope the local media cover the event. Unlike ignoring Joe Leonardi's announcement. I talked with Joe after his announcement and he told me his next event was in Carbon County, but I didn't see anything in the papers about it. Hopefully he will get a website up to keep us informed of his activities.

I just want to say good luck to both these gentlemen. It takes courage to run for office especially against longtime incumbents. But it is great to have serious candidates in both these races, no one should be unopposed for reelection.

Sunday, August 28, 2005

Pay raise

For six Pennsylvania senators, the Legislature's decision to circumvent the state constitution and allow members to cash in early on a big pay raise will mean an extra $100,000 or more in their pockets.

How does it feel to be raped? Fortunately I have not had that experience. What is going on is the financial equivalent. These people (I'm really trying to avoid bad language, but it is hard.) raised their salaries by 20 to 50 thousand dollars. I think every member from Luzerne County voted for the increase. They cut Medicaid and borrowed millions more for the Growing Greener ballot question. I usaully vote for challengers and this will make it easier.

Saturday, August 27, 2005

Emergency room

The health care crisis continues in America .We are the richest country on earth and we can’t figure out how to take care of our people when they get sick? Why on earth would the law provide that your house be seized because you have to go in a nursing home? Why are people forced to go to the emergency room when a family doctor could take of the problem? Our health care system needs to change; it can’t happen in one or two years.
But we have to get to a system where we take care of everyone.

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Phillies tie Houston in Wild Card race

Who are these guys and what have they done with the Phillies. Here is a recap by Marcus Hayes:

WHEN THE Phillies designed this team, this is how they envisioned wins coming against National League East foes: Veteran starter pitches well enough, top of the order gets on base, the 3-4-5 hitters drive them in once or twice, then the back of the bullpen shuts things down.
That's pretty much what happened in last night's 4-3 win over the Nationals, the game that, for the moment, has the Phillies tied atop the National League wild-card race.

Things are looking good but I have been following this team long enough not to get too excited. Two years ago I bought tickets for a playoff game when it looked like they would make it and got burned. Everyone talks about the Red Sox and Cubs not winning it all for so many years but remember the Phillies have only one World Series win in 120 years. They are playing well now but there is plenty of time for a collapse leaving the fans out in the cold once again.

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Gold star mothers

Sherwood Baker's mom takes part in Texas anti-war protest

Celeste Zappala always believed her son Sherwood Baker was headed for great things.But he never made it past age 30. On April 26, 2004, the sergeant with the 109th Field Artillery was killed by an explosion in Baghdad, leaving a wife and then-9-year-old son behind in Plymouth Borough.

In the aftermath of her son's death, Zappala became friends with another "Gold Star" mother, Cindy Sheehan of Vacaville, Calif., whose 24-year-old son Casey was killed in action in Iraq just 22 days before Baker.

The Bush administration never clearly articulated its reasons for the war, which is costing $1 billion a week, Zappala said."I think they have absolutely no idea what they're going," she said. "I think we're getting to the point where normal, reasonable people are starting to see that. "The war has to stop. We don't want anyone else killed. We're here to support the troops, to bring them home now, alive. ... My little piece in all this was to say, "We've got to tell the truth."

These moms are making a powerful statement and whatever your view of the war you have to admire their tenacity. On the local front there will be a Vigil for Cindy Sheehan on Public Square tonight at 7:30PM sponsored by a group called Bring Them Home.

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Good food

This is the first time I have figured out how to put an image on the blog. It took about an hour before I got it to work. It's great having a new computer with a lot of bells and whistles, I just need a kid to show me how it all works.

I remember a few years back when people got excited about an Olive Garden opening at the Wyoming Valley Mall. My reaction was so what. There are many great Italian restaurants in the area. If you live in Pittston or Old Forge you can drown in tomato sauce. I try to avoid chains but they are convenient. Every town in America looks the same with it's burger row and Holiday Inn and Seven-Eleven, etc.

That what makes Dan's Keystone Grill so great. The owners Dan and Mary greet you by name and ask about your life, your a customer and a friend. And the food will knock your socks off. My favorite is the prime rib. I like it mooing and bleeding and it always comes out perfect just as I ordered, hot and red. Mrs. Gort is very fond of the veal because it has the wine flavor and the alcohol is burned off. He is a great chef.

My point is shop local, we have many family owned businesses that blow the chains out of the water

Monday, August 15, 2005


I do not like spam on my net
I do not like spam with a pet
I do not like spam on my blog
I do not like spam on a log
I do not like spam in my house
I do not like spam near my mouse
I do not like spam on my web
I do not like spam I have said
I do not like spam in my mail
I'd like to stick your head in a pail
I do not like spam that I know
Your spam just really really blows
You spamers really get me mad
You must be very very sad
You really waste my daily time
I'd rather sit and watch a mime
I'd like to choke you nice and slow
Because your spam just really blows
Keep your spam away from me
Or very unhappy I will be
You do not want to get me mad
Or you'll be very very sad
Please just keep me off your site
And we can both have a good night!

Auntie Spam

Saturday, August 13, 2005

As the Eagles turn

The soap opera that is the Philadelphia Eagles continues at Lehigh University. A summery:

TO is in the time out chair

Westbrook ended his hold out and wants a long term deal

Jerome McDougal is recovering from a gunshot wound

Corey Simon's picture is appearing on milk cartons

And Andy Reid is on the Atkins Diet

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

"I will not be a sacrificial lamb"

So declared Joe Leonardi as he announced his intention to challenge Paul Kanjorski for the 11th Congressional District. He spoke to a crowd of about 70 friends, family and supporters at the Convention Hall in Pittston Wednesday night. The event was attended by a few high profile local Republicans such as Prothonatary candidate Carolee Medico-Olenginski, W-B Area school board nominee Lynn Evans and activist Christine Katsock. Also attending were state committeeman Bill Lewis and county Young Republican chairman Ben Tilly. Plymouth council candidate Shelley Davis also said hello. It was disappointing none of the local media attended. But the alternative media was there. Myself and Bill Fitzpatrick of My Take covered the event.

He started by lamenting the fact that too many young people leave the area because of a lack of good opportunities. And later outlined a plan to contact 100 businesses in his first hundred days in office to show them the attractions of the area and try to convince them to set up shop here.

He then recounted the fact that he is a son of an immigrant and feels illegal immigration is a serious threat to the country. He touched on a few subjects that are not a direct responsibility of a Congressman such as setting up regional police forces and finding a better way to fund education.

Of course he took a few swipes. He was very adamant that the proposed inflatable dam is a bad idea and to make things happen you have to do more than believe.

He closed with a pledge on ethics. He promised never to hire a relative or steer a federal contract to a family member. He also vowed transparency, pledging to be open to the media and having regular town hall meetings.

He is just getting started and needs to add some detail to his positions. It was interesting what he didn't talk about. He never mentioned abortion, gay marriage or any other hot button social issue.

But we all know it all comes down to money. Kanjorski can raise $2 million dollars if needed. I talked with him after the speech and he said he had only talked with the NRCC once. If he can raise a decent amount of money such as $100,000 in the next quarter they may take notice of him.

Good luck Joe.

Block Party


I know many of you who read this site also visit Mark Cour's site Wilkes-Barre Online.

Mark and his neighbors are having their annual shindig this Saturday and I am planning to attend and hope to see a few friendly faces. Thompson Street is off Penn Ave near Butler Street in the north end of W-B. If you need directions please email me or Mark at Or you can use Google Maps.

Also tonight at 6PM Joseph Leonardi will be announce his candidacy for the 11 th district tonight at the Convention Hall in Pittston. I think I will go and listen to what he has to say.

Tuesday, August 09, 2005


Starting today, Gold Star families from Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Arkansas and other states whose loved ones have died as a result of the war in Iraq will be joining one of their members, Cindy Sheehan, at the protest. Ms. Sheehan, whose son Army Specialist Casey Sheehan was killed in Sadr City, Iraq on April 4, 2004, has been in Crawford since August 5th, demanding a meeting with the President. These families will be joined by military families with loved ones currently serving in Iraq or about to deploy or redeploy to Iraq. All of these families are coming to Crawford, Texas to share their stories about the personal costs of the war in Iraq and add their voices to the call for a meeting with President Bush.

In the early afternoon, we got word that if we were still there by Thursday, we were going to be deemed a "security threat" to the president. Condi and Rummy are coming in on Thursday for a "policy" meeting. I just don't understand why we will be a security threat on Thursday when we aren't now? If we don't leave on Thursday, we will be arrested. Well, I am not leaving. There are only three things that would make me leave: if George comes out and talks to me; if August comes to an end, or if I am arrested."

Go talk to her George.

GOP candidate to run against Kanjorski

From the Times-Tribune:

An area chiropractor hopes to challenge U.S. Rep. Paul Kanjorski, D-Nanticoke, in next year's election. Joseph Leonardi, 40, a Republican who lives in Dupont and has an office in Kingston, will officially announce his candidacy for Congress on Wednesday at 6 p.m. at Convention Hall in Pittston Township.

I don't know what his financial situation is like or if he has national backing. I checked the
NRCC web site and they have nothing on him. He is going to need a ton of money to be competitive. He stated one reason for running:

I decided to run because I looked at the decline in the area in the last 10 to 20 years, and I don't think the job is being done. I want to change it," Mr. Leonardi said. Mr. Leonardi pledged to be a "representative for our area" in encouraging investment here. He does not support the inflatable dam project on the Susquehanna River in Wilkes-Barre that Mr. Kanjorski proposed."The way a river cleans itself is by moving. Damming up a polluted river at the source makes no sense whatsoever to me," Mr. Leonardi said. "We don't have a clean portion of the river."

I'm sure he will outline more tonight.

Sunday, August 07, 2005


I have been hearing all sorts of stuff about different subjects. Her are a few. If anyone can enlighten me I would appreciate it.

About the Pocono Downs area:

I got it from a pretty good source that East main St. is going to be re-vamped into a multi lane hwy. And that eminent domain is going to be enforced resulting in the razing of the Chicken coupe, Eddies diner, etc.

Local politics:

Expect an announcement by Wed at the latest of a GOP challenger to Kanjorski
Not Mayor Lou, Some Doctor Guy but not Madera who is running for Lemond's seat.

If anyone has heard any other good ones, please email me or leave them in the comments.

Thursday, August 04, 2005

Jury duty

I recently received a notice that I may be called for jury duty. I hope if I have to serve I get a case as interesting as some of these.

These are from a book called Disorder in the American Courts, and are things people actually said in court, word for word, taken down and now published by court reporters who had the torment of staying calm while these exchanges were actually taking place.

ATTORNEY: Are you sexually active?
WITNESS: No, I just lie there.

ATTORNEY: What was the first thing your husband said to you that morning?
WITNESS: He said, "Where am I, Cathy?"
ATTORNEY: And why did that upset you?
WITNESS: My name is Susan.

ATTORNEY: Now doctor, isn't it true that when a person dies in his sleep, he doesn't know about it until the next morning?
WITNESS: Did you actually pass the bar exam?

ATTORNEY: So the date of conception (of the baby) was August 8th?
ATTORNEY: And what were you doing at that time?

ATTORNEY: Doctor, before you performed the autopsy, did you check for a pulse?
ATTORNEY: Did you check for blood pressure?
ATTORNEY Did you check for breathing?
ATTORNEY: So, then it is possible that the patient was alive when you began the autopsy?
ATTORNEY: How can you be so sure, Doctor?
WITNESS: Because his brain was sitting on my desk in a jar.
ATTORNEY: But could the patient have still been alive, nevertheless?
WITNESS: Yes, it is possible that he could have been alive and practicing law.

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Carney for Congress

Chris Carney,of Susquehanna County, has been considering a run for the 10th district seat held by Don Sherwood. He is a political science professor at Penn State-Worthington and does some work for the Department of Defense. It looks like he has taken a step closer to entering the race by establishing a website. Check out Chris Carney for Congress. So far it is just an email registration but I hope he adds some content in the near future.

Monday, August 01, 2005

Phils do nothing

The title of this post sums up the season so far. The trade deadline came and went and Ed Wade was unwilling to pull the trigger for a starting pitcher. The good news is they didn't do anything stupid like trading Billy Wagner. Not that he gets allot of work. I think he has closed only 4 games in the last 2 weeks.

Rich Hofmann in the Daily News sums it up best:

There is nothing that Ed Wade could have done before the expiration of yesterday's trade deadline that would have been applauded back home. Such are the current realities. Of all his available options, though, Wade has chosen the gutsiest for him personally. For now, he has chosen to do nothing.

They wanted a starter, and Wade acknowledged as much. Part of the problem is figuring out whom the new guy might replace, because most of the current starters have taken turns going through horrendous stretches - Cory Lidle in his last four starts, Vicente Padilla before that, and on and on. That leaves the tricky question of whether you would remove Robinson Tejeda and his 2.95 ERA from the rotation, just because he is inexperienced, and replace him with somebody else's problem - a middling veteran having a middling season. Because that was the marketplace. Do you really want to add a so-so starter, and how much are you willing to subtract from your bullpen to get him?

Of course they can still make a trade like the one for Corey Lidle last year. Very few teams block a waiver trade. The only teams that do it regularly are the Yankees and the Red sox. But that is just another part of their never ending war.