Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Retain the Judges?


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Luzerne County Judges Thomas Burke and Peter Paul Olszewski Jr. are up for retention to the Court of Common Pleas this year and they are feeling the heat of the fallout of the Juvie Brothers scandal that may result in them losing the yes/no vote. They may meet a similar fate as Pennsylvania Supreme Court Justice Russell Nigro? In 2005 Nigro lost his bid for retention because the state legislature voted themselves an outrageous pay raise in the middle of the night and the voters took their wrath out on him. They have not been accused of any wrongdoing but Conahan and Ciavarella are not on the ballot and they are. People I talk to are in a throw the bums out mood.
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PPO-2 has been in full campaign mode with a website up and has been raising money. Judge Burke hasn't raised a dime, doesn't have a website but has been pressing the flesh asking people for their vote and answering every question thrown at him.
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Olszewski’s trip to the Florida condo has been well documented and just may sink him. I've never heard anybody say a bad thing about Judge Burke and I even had him for jury duty recently and thought he was very fair. Then again I had Ciavarella for jury duty a few years ago and was impressed by him. Shows what I know. But I just can't get by this from a local attorney:
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Olszewski and Burke claim they did nothing wrong. "It wasn't me, It was them. I didn't know. How could I know?" Just men had a duty to discover the truth. Olszewski said the hearings took place a half a mile away in another building. How could he hear? How did an advocacy group over 100 miles away in Philadelphia hear enough to file lawsuits on behalf of more than 500 children? How did the FBI know enough about it to raid juvenile probation? Olszewski says if he knew he would have told the FBI. If "ifs" and "buts" were candy and nuts, oh what a party we'd have.
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I always vote no on these questions no matter what is going on but that's just me and all my Republican friends tell me I'm wrong to vote no on Burke. As unfair as it may seem to be to these gentleman ( I doubt their judgement and tin ears not their integrity) we have to send a message about what has been going on in the Courthouse and the way to do that is to vote no on retention.
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So tell me in the comments why I'm wrong and vote in the polls on the sidebar.

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12 comments:

The Scranton Guardian said...

I'm voting with you Gort !!!

Professor Milburn Cleaver, OPA said...

As well intentioned as the Webmaster may be, it seems that everytime the voter opts to vote on "sending a message", he ends up cutting of his nose to spite his face. Gort writes that he does not question the integrity of Judges Olszewski and Burke, rather their "tin ears and judgment". Students, this is nothing short of doublespeak. In fact, he does doubt the integrity of Judge Olszewski (if you review his previous postings). Why he does not adhere to this I do not know. In summary, I repeat, voters who practice their sacred constitutional right by shooting from the hip (as the webmaster is encouraging) merely tend to deepen the problems which they are attempting to eradicate. One may attempt to pull an aching tooth with a rusty set of pliars; in the end the tooth is extracted, but the gums become infected. Finally, we last sent a message in last years election with Mr. Obama. WE all know how that turned out. Class dismissed!!!!

Anonymous said...

Voting NO on both.

c said...

I definitely doubt their integrity.

Austin said...

It isn't really another Judge's responsibility to know or care what is going on with the Prez Judge right?

Also McGruff reprinted a TL article from 06 that described one of the insta trials these kids got. If we are handing out blame for ignorance can't we put that on everyone who reads the TL?

Current Prez Judge Muroski said either Conahan or Chivy had eliminated their meetings when they were Prez. So the Judges would never see each other for business.

Not that there isn't enough blame to go around. Also I never need great reason to vote against retention.

I wish Judge Burke were doing more right now. He seems so legit but like you point out a lot of people do.

Anonymous said...

Judge Burke is legit! That Bronze Star in Vietnam is all I need to know about his youth when I think of the sacrifices the men and women of our military are making at this very moment and how much courage it takes for a young person to go to war. I knew him when he was a lawyer with a great reputation and spending spare time running or helping run campaigns for the soup kitchen, the Salvation Army, the United Way and the YMCA. Every lawyer I've talked to says he's as good as it gets as a judge. His kids are so solid there like livin breathin hope for the future. He's as humble as they get. The only reason it is so hard for us to believe there are good honest people left is because we're so justifiably outgraged at the vicious assault by two judges on our community and our children. i read this blog all the time and the competing points of view are a real education in how great it is to be American. I never write in but I just had to this time to ask that we don't get so angry that we lose faith in everyone and fail to distinguish the bad from the good. Your great either way Gort but I hope you change your mind and vote to retain Burke.

Anonymous said...

i want to vote for burke, but i don't think i will. i am willing to toss out the baby with the bath water on this occasion and just start over. if we get the same thing again, or worse, then it is time to move the fuck out of here.

Anonymous said...

Anon 3:33 acknowleing his war effort is an outstanding comment and none other are necessary. It bothers me to no end that Anon 4:23 your comment is sickening! Wht have you done for your country? Are you even a vet.

All I want is good government and cutting off a good leg because the other is bad leaves an asshole without a leg to stand on! DA!

I;;m voting for Burke and proud of it. I'm voting NO for Olszewski and pissed I can only vote no once!

Anonymous said...

Anon 3:33 Sorry but I can't stop laughing. Where the hell did you get that comment about cutting off the good leg becuse of the bad leg? If there is going to be an award, that has got to be the best ever. If I had a leg, I would call that a real ass kicker.

But when the laughter died down, I was left wondering how anyone with half a brain could justify voting no on Burke. Anothr reason why we are where we are.

Anonymous said...

I was going to vote the same as anon 9:40 but now I am voting no on both. If people like you who can't handle a differing view are supporting Burke, there must be something bad about him we don't know about. Thank you for pointing out that Burke supporters are ignorant and small minded.

Anonymous said...

Judge Burke is a wonderful judge and an outstanding citizen. I have seen nothing that links him to any cour house problems and therefore will vote on his record and on him as a person. My vote is YES to retain Judge Burke!

Anonymous said...

I've met Judge Tom Burke dozens of times over the 10 or 15 years and never did I ever consider that this mild and gentle man could be a Bronze Star winner or even fought in Vietnam. If any of you people can vote against a man with his war record you should truly be ashamed of yourselves. I will vote for Judge Tom Burke and I will be honored to do so. What in the name of everything decent is wrong with you negative people? Where did this terribly mean attitude come from? I'm sick to think that some of these American ingrates who show no honor to this honorable man might very well be one of my neighbors. I certainly hope not. Judge Tom Burke will get my vote because he deserves it.