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543 Comments by NTiger

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Southampton Town Board Fails To Appoint New Police Chief

There once was a town named Southampton
Had some electeds that rivaled Ralph Krampton
Full of itsy bitsy political partisan scandals
LIke some convention of visagoths, huns and vandals
A pox on them all, unelect them this fall
One Dem, Two Reps, One Indie, and One Conserv'tive
Makes Town government far from superlative

" Apr 20, 11 9:53 PM

Town Board Opens Up Chief Position To Lieutenants

You know for a guy with a Kratoville appointment fixation, I haven't seen any criticism of Mr. Kratoville's on the job performance. So perhaps the guy hiding behind an anonymous handle might want to make full disclosure of his own agenda. Hard to give credence to a guy who complains about backroom deals but hides behind a cloak of darkness him or her self. Just some not so revolutionary thoughts from a former Town Democratic Committee Chairman and Democratic Elections Commissioner. Some of us think if you are gonna speak out in public you ought to let the public know who you are. Of course that would be applicable to reg rep as well. And if documents exist to support the rumors of political pressure for this appointment then those documents should be released, perhaps to the D.A. Then again if there is no proof there is no crime and apologies are due. The silly season in Southampton seems to have gone from seasonal to all year long. Why not discuss the relative merits or detriments of each of the individuals being considered for the position. The taxpayers of Southampton deserve to know about each of the gentlemen (evidently females need not apply for this one). We all know the political games that are played and our opportunity to show what we think of them occurs during primaries and general elections. So let us focus on credentials of the candidates and stop the juvenile game playing. You all can start by revealing your own identities and political affiliations so the folks here in southampton know who is saying what and can thusly discern why. Happy Easter to you both. " Apr 24, 11 11:50 AM

The below section of the NYS Election Law might well be applicably were an elected official to make an appointment in return for the endorsement (line) of a political party. I would respectfully suggest that those claiming political interference in the appointment of the Town's Chief of Police read it and give careful consideration to the gravity of the charge being leveled. Let us at least to attempt to act like mature adults. Former U.S. Senator Patrick Moynihan was fond of reminded us all that "we are all entitled to our own opinions, but not our own set of facts". Wise man, wise words. Caveat Emptor.

§ 17-158. Corrupt use of position or authority. Any person who:
1. While holding public office, or being nominated or seeking a
nomination therefor, corruptly uses or promises to use, directly, or
indirectly, any official authority or influence possessed or
anticipated, in the way of conferring upon any person, or in order to
secure, or aid any person in securing, any office or public employment,
or any nomination, confirmation, promotion or increase of salary, upon
consideration that the vote or political influence or action of the
person so to be benefited or of any other person, shall be given or used
in behalf of any candidate, officer or party or upon any other corrupt
condition or consideration; or,
2. Being a public officer or employee of the state or a political
subdivision having, or claiming to have, any authority or influence
affecting the nomination, public employment, confirmation, promotion,
removal or increase or decrease of salary of any public officer or
employee, promises or threatens to use, any such authority or influence,
directly or indirectly to affect the vote or political action of any
such public officer or employee, or on account of the vote or political
action of such officer or employee; or,
3. Makes, tenders or offers to procure, or cause any nomination or
appointment for any public office or place, or accepts or requests any
such nomination or appointment, upon the payment or contribution of any
valuable consideration, or upon an understanding or promise thereof; or,
4. Makes any gift, promise or contribution to any person, upon the
condition or consideration of receiving an appointment or election to a
public office or a position of public employment, or for receiving or
retaining any such office or position, or promotion, privilege, increase
of salary or compensation therein, or exemption from removal or
discharge therefrom, is guilty of a felony.
" Apr 24, 11 12:28 PM

Lieutenants Throw Their Hats Into the Ring For Chief Position

Then, of course, we can see how the Supervisor, Town Board and Town Attorney's office explain whatever happened to the requirements for a Police Commissioner pursuant to Town Code Section 19-4. Since the legality of the implementation of Chapter 19 of the Town Code (creating the position of the Police Commissioner rather than a Board of Commissioners) was upheld by the Appellate Division, Second Department back in 2008, the position has evidently been unfunded and has remained vacant. There must be some plausible explanation since the language of a Town Proposition in 2007 (assuming it was a legal Town Prop) does not appear to repeal the Sections of the Town Code creating the position, at best, perhaps limiting the authority of the Commissioner regarding hirings and firings. So Rohma perhaps you and the Press can shed some light on the Police Commissioner issue. Are we looking at two, rather than one, vacancies in the Town Police Department? Was the position created for some nefarious reason? (It was Chief Overton who challenged the law in the courts) Should the Town Code be amended to repeal the provision? What effect, if any, does the failure to fill the position have on actions which under the provision were to be made by the Police Commissioner? Has the Town Board been acting as a Police Commission? If so, were any acts made be them in that capacity under a cloud? Or as my friends who gather for golf might say, Section 19-4 was just a mulligan? My own theory is that the Section was placed on super secret double probation. But that's just one theory. Hopefully someone can provide us with the facts. " Apr 28, 11 11:04 AM

Southampton Town Board Appoints Wilson As Police Chief

Whatever happened to the requirements for a Police Commissioner pursuant to Town Code Section 19-4. Since the legality of the implementation of Chapter 19 of the Town Code (creating the position of the Police Commissioner rather than a Board of Commissioners) was upheld by the Appellate Division, Second Department back in 2008, the position has evidently been unfunded and has remained vacant. There must ...more be some plausible explanation since the language of a Town Proposition in 2007 (assuming it was a legal Town Prop) does not appear to repeal the Sections of the Town Code creating the position, at best, perhaps limiting the authority of the Commissioner regarding hirings and firings. So Rohma perhaps you and the Press can shed some light on the Police Commissioner issue. Are we looking at two, rather than one, vacancies in the Town Police Department? Was the position created for some nefarious reason? (It was Chief Overton who challenged the law in the courts) Should the Town Code be amended to repeal the provision? What effect, if any, does the failure to fill the position have on actions which under the provision were to be made by the Police Commissioner? Has the Town Board been acting as a Police Commission? If so, were any acts made be them in that capacity under a cloud? Or as my friends who gather for golf might say, Section 19-4 was just a mulligan? My own theory is that the Section was placed on super secret double probation. But that's just one theory. Hopefully someone can provide us with the facts. " May 2, 11 12:07 AM

The proposition in 2007 stated in full "SHALL THE POLICE COMMISSIONER OF THE TOWN OF SOUTHAMPTON, WHO IS, PURSUANT TO THE TOWN CODE, RESPONSIBLE FOR THE MANAGEMENT OF THE POLICE DEPARTMENT AND SUPERVISION OF ALL POLICE PERSONNEL, BE THE APPOINTING AUTHORITY FOR THE DEPARTMENT, INCLUDING THE RIGHT TO MAKE EMPLOYMENT DECISIONS CONCERNING POLICE PERSONNEL?" A reading of Chapter 19 of the Town Code the legality of which was confirmed by the Appellate Division of the Second Department in a decision in 2008 certainly encompasses far more than 2007 Town Proposition. One might question the validity of the '07 Proposition. Evidently neither the plaintiff in that action (Chief Overton) nor the Town Attorney were inclined to withdraw the appeal on the basis of the 2007 Proposition. But read Chapter 19 and the Proposition. A wiser singer/song writer/philosopher than myself, said it best "You don't need to be a weatherman to know which way the wind is blowing". Well you don't have to have a degree in English to read the Code and the Proposition, they speak for themselves. As for the legality of any actions the town boards may have taken since the enabling of Chapter 19, I'd suggest your question would be better answered by the Town Attorney's Office. It is a question well worth asking since more than one Supervisor, more than one Town Board composition, and more than one Town Attorney have either chosen to ignore the Chapter or have been oblivious to it. The views expressed herein are my own personal views and in no way constitute a binding legal opinion. Just the concerns of a senior citizen about the manner in which town government is operated. Just asking questions of others in the hopes that there might be someone in our town government who has answers and the forth rightness to state them publicly regardless of the repercussions of doing so. I think the term du jour is "transparency". A term used so often you can't see through it any more." May 2, 11 10:59 AM

A plausible reason for the creation of the position, but having created a position that eliminated the Police Commission under the NYS Town Law Section 150 and replacing it with a Commissioner that the Code states "shall" not "may" be appointed, an attempt to eliminate the position thus created by not funded doesn't strike me as "kosher". We all need to be concerned about taking shortcuts (didn't we learn that lesson with the Supervisor's first pick for Town Attorney). I have no dispute with your contention that a Town our size doesn't need a Police Commissioner, but I strongly object to an attempt to just disregard a Local Law amending the Town Code by ignoring it. We are a nation and town of laws not people, enact a dumb Section of the Town Code by the legal process required to supercede the State Law then repeal it using the same mandated process, don't just sweep it under the carpet. Don't speak of transparency out of one side of the mouth and violate the law with the other. By the way it would have taken my than Skip Heaney's vote on the Town Board to have that Local Law enacted. The Town Proposition in 2007 did not repeal the provisions of Section 19 of the Town Code, read the town prop it put a limit on the authority of the Commissioner but did not eliminate the position or give the Town Board the authority to defund the position. It does not matter whether any of us believe the position to be of no greater value than an appendix at the end of the colon, what matters is doing things in the proper manner. Evidently this has been beyond the ken of a variety of Town Attorneys and Supervisors and Town Board members. Yes the Town has had and continues to have far greater problems than a vacant Police Commissioner, but if we allow our elected officials and appointees to take short-cuts when ever they please, where will it stop. My point simply stated is do things the right way. Bad Section of Town Code repeal it. How is our new Police Chief supposed to get others to obey the Law when elected and appointed officials can blatantly ignore it. Its not a partisan issue. Now has the Town Attorneys Office ever sought an opinion from the Attorney General or Comptroller's Offices as to whether Section 19 can be ignored? Has the Town Attorneys Office itself issued such an opinion in the years since the Section was enacted. Then you have to ask yourself if this Section of the Code was created because a Supervisor didn't like a Police Chief how many, if any, other Sections of the Town Code were enacted for similar reasons? I thank you for your response concerning the origins and await a response or action by the Town Board or Town Attorneys Office to clarify who has been acting in lieu of the Police Commissioner and are those actions, if any, legal? Finally, will someone on the Town Board advance an amendment to the Town Code to abolish the Commissioner position and return to governance under Town Law Section 150. If that is asking too much than I will borrow an old line from Steve Martin and simply say "well, excuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuusssssseeeee me"." May 3, 11 5:26 PM

If there is a true desire to insure that elected officials are responsive to the needs of the general public as opposed to the special interests (whoever they may be) then amend the Town Code to provide for "Recall" and "Referendum". Who knows elected officials might even decide to respond to questions asked during the public portion of Town Board meetings if their job security was on the line. And if there is a current rule against such communications then a majority of Town Board members (can you say 3) ought to pass a resolution allowing it. The biggest downside to it, you will only get to ask one question with a 3 minute time limit. And don't really expect to have your question the one that's answered. To the credit of all at this past Monday evenings a modicum of decorum was displayed by all. Nice to be able to say our elected officials can so politely refuse to answer questions from the public. Love to hear them talk about transparency until it becomes just another word you can't see through. Saying the word is not the equivalent of acting the deed. Like the adage goes "You can fool some of the people all of the time, and all of the people some of the time, but you can't fool all of the people all of the time." " May 5, 11 3:21 PM

I suppose if you repeat the same unsubstantiated rumors, personal attacks and innuendo often enough, you convince at least yourself of its veracity. However useful these techniques might be in propaganda and spin they don't meet the Sgt Friday (late of Dragnet) test which is a simple "Just the facts". The test for both Mr. Kratoville and Chief Wilson is how they perform in their respective positions. Hopefully their performances far surpass the performance of the Supervisor's first choice for Town Attorney(fact check: oh yes the one who left Town Hall under a cloud). As far as allowing citizens to address the Town Board but not bestow even a cursory response to their questions seems a bit despotic and is certainly going to produce some backlash and frustration from the public. So perhaps 3 members of the Town Board will propose a rule change allow so dialogue between the public and our elected representatives. Three votes just as three votes appointed Mssrs. Kratoville and Wilson(okay 3 + 1 for the new Chief, but 3 would have sufficed). If you get away from the personal attacks, innuendos and unsubstantiated rumors from the comments here, there might be fewer comments and certain shorter ones, but they just might be factual, incisive and informative. Even the use of IMHO might better serve the public than declaratory sentences alleging themselves to be gospel instead of the unsubstantiated rumors they really are. Oh yes there I go trying to take the opaqueness out of make believe transparency again. Obviously and rationally we are never going to agree with everything each of our elected officials does or does not do, but the obvious venom that flows from the river of partisanship in most of these comments is no way to teach our children about the responsibilities of citizenship. Mr. Kratoville is the Town Administrator and Chief Wilson will shortly be the Chief of the Town's Police Department. Judge them on the manner in which they perform their services for the public, not on who or how they were appointed. " May 7, 11 6:36 PM

What we should do is elect governmental officials (pols or whatever you wish to call them) who have only the best interest of the public in mind, not their own advancement. You can only judge an appointee by the job she or he does, you can judge the electeds who appointed them by the manner in which they chose to select appointees (on the presumption, albeit not always a very accurate one that they are not making the appointment in a manner considered against the law - i.e. you appoint so and so and I'll give you my parties line at the next election, or I won't endorse your opponent or I'll run one of my own). This simply reflects reality - 3 votes make appointments. If you don't like the appointments(for other than partisan reasons, such as they are not qualified, they haven't done a good job etc) you need to elect different officials to make the appointments. So in simple terms once some one is appointed you can only judge them on the jobs they do, you can judge those doing the appointments on whether or not they did so to advance their own illustrious political careers or whether they did it genuinely believing it was for the general good(by the way the two concepts are not mutually exclusive). You can anticipate that if you elect Republicans and Conservatives as a majority the appointments will more often than not reflect their values, the same can be said if you elect Democrats. The alleged controversy here was whether or not those voting for the Chief position did so for their own political gain. They said no. You can choose to believe what they say or not, that's part of what makes our democracy work. Patronage has long been a part of the American political system. It is not inherently evil but like all things it is at times abused(by both major political parties and perhaps more so to appease the minor political parties - tail wags the dog syndrome - the accusation in the Chief's appointment - of course, no proof just accusation) If you reread my comment perhaps you will understand the distinction between judging those making the appointments and those being appointed. I certainly have my own opinions on the appointments of both gentlemen, I also know how to count to three. Mr. Kratoville was always going to have 3 votes no matter the "procedure" as was Chief Wilson. Procedure is just another one of those make believe transparency things. And why do you find it necessary to refer to Mr. Kratoville and Chief Wilson as "bozos"? I always hope that those elected and those appointed by those elected will do a good job. No one knows with any certainty until after a person assumes the position as to whether or not they will truly shine. Why do you choose to hide behind a handle instead of revealing your identity? Some might say that was a rather bozo thing to be doing, not I, of course, but others might. " May 7, 11 9:34 PM

Oh yes the procedures that were followed in the Supervisor's selection for her first Town Attorney. You can continue to misread and misrepresent what I have stated as long as you want. If you truly believe that there was any chance that the 3 votes for Chief Wilson were going to go away after screening the Lts., or that interviewing others for the Administrator position would have changed those three votes, then as former Town Supervisor Marty Lang used to say "God bless you".

As for screen names being part of the culture of this site, I suppose that's like a procedure. Or perhaps like the guy behind the curtain that the Wizard tells Dorothy to ignore. In my opinion those that wish to make comments ought to have the courage of their convictions and use their real names. Especially those who enjoy spreading unsubstantiated rumors, personal attacks and innuendo.

For now let us just agree to disagree about the meaning of my comments and the manner in which government operates in the real world as opposed to that fictional smoke filled civics class." May 8, 11 11:32 AM

Southampton Democrats Pick Slate; GOP Convention Slated For Wednesday

If Monday is May 16, Wednesday would be May 18 not May 19, Thursday would be May 19. Now May 19 did fall on a Wednesday in 2010. " May 16, 11 8:00 PM

Nuzzi Not Sure If He Will Accept GOP Nomination For Supervisor

Two words in rebuttal: Michael Sordi. Who voted for him despite being warned about his missed appearances in Nassau County? Oh yes that would be the Supervisor who wanted to help out a defeated Nassau County Exec and Dem State Chair! And then enrolled in the Independence Party so she wouldn't have to worry about getting an authorization for that line as a non-party member. Tell me peoplefirst any complaints about Mr. Kratoville's job performance? Has he missed any deadlines? So who has the better judgment - Nuzzi or Throne-Holst? Let the debate be one of issues and integrity. One without the other is a disservice to the people of Southampton. So if you want to discuss Mr. Kratoville you need to be prepared to defend Mr. Sordi and his sponsor Ms. Throne-Holst. I suspect that will be a difficult argument for you to win. " May 19, 11 10:57 AM

Perhaps a little knowledge of the Election Law might be helpful here. In the first place these convention selections have no legal effect whatsoever. They are simply a way to energize County Committeepeople who will have to carry designating petitions during the prescribed time periods and filed with the Board of Elections in order to have the candidates placed on the ballot. Then those named on the designating petitions can decline the designation. When that occurs the persons named as a Committee to Fill Vacancies (generally party leadership) get to substitute another individual. (There was a time when these meetings did, in fact, serve to actually nominate candidates, but that was long ago and far away). Where the individual(s) are not enrolled members of a political party for which they have achieved designated status they also require an authorization from that party to be placed on the ballot. So it is a multi-step process. In Mr. Nuzzi's case his "waffling" might be seen be some to be refreshing rather than being silent and just waiting for the declination period after the filing of the designating petitions. Of course the down side is that were he to remain named on the Republican designating petition only to decline the validity of appointing a substitute might be legally challenged. The case law goes both ways on "stand-in" candidates. Is this a case of buying time while scurrying for another candidate or is Mr. Nuzzi truly conflicted between his public service and his family? Only Mr. Nuzzi and, perhaps, a handful of Republican leaders in Town know the true answer to that. Anyone else expressing an opinion on that is just expressing an opinion. In a couple of weeks Committeepeople or Notary Publics will be carrying designating petitions for the rank and file party enrollees to sign. Once filed at the Board of Elections, those with some knowledge of Election Law will pore over them looking for a way to knock the slates off the ballot. There are no certainties other than that if a petition is challenged and the requisite number of valid signatures is not attained, bye bye candidate. Only after Primary Day, whether there is an actually on ballot primary contest or not, are the designee's assured their place on the Election Day ballot. It'll be mid-July before anyone knows who might decline a designation and let the Committee on Vacancies select the new(real) candidate. The need for an authorization for a non-party member (i.e. a person a felt they had a lock on the Dem or Rep designation seeking to also be a candidate on the Independence Party line) might be seen as a good reason to enroll in the Independence Party rather than say the Democratic Party - especially if you were worried about getting an authorization from the Independence Party, but not the Democratic Party. Gee can we think of anyone who might have done just that(Fred? Jay? Anna? any thoughts on who would do that)? Not a guarantee. Just another example on the games being played on an unknowing public. But you never know if some other Democratic might petition their way onto the Democratic Primary Ballot and remind the real Democrats in Town, just who and who isn't a Democrat. Sheds a bit more light on "transparency" or the lack of it doesn't it? Its what makes NY State Elections so much fun (albeit, perhaps a bit confusing to the unschooled or semi-schooled). A wonderful place for a knowing mischief maker to just kinda hang out and throw that proverbial monkey wrench into the best laid political chicanery of some who seek or hold public office. So if the reporter and editor were a bit confused by the happenings at the Republican meeting the other night, they are not alone. I'd be glad to give them some lessons about Election Law and Elections (theoretical and practical) in this State any old time." May 20, 11 5:28 PM

Hate to spoil the comparison but in Nuzzi's 4 way race everyone had two votes thus making it mathematically and in reality the equivalent of a two way race. One must also consider the caliber of the opponents they were each facing. (Remember one of them had an opponent who had allegedly been driving while intoxicated, a charge from which the opponent was exonerated after trial) So in 2009 they ran for different offices in pretty much a dead heat. The Supervisor has the advantage/disadvantage of now having an additional two years in office. It will be an interesting race to watch, if it happens. A whole lotta time between now and November - what with petition challenges, possible primaries in who knows how many parties (do I hear the sound of Opportunities to Ballot Petitions in the small parties and possibly the larger ones two). Well at least we past one predicted end of the world. Actually there are probably one or two others that would be the Dems worst nightmare, but apparently they've headed south or north or west or even east for the summer and fall. Of course a field of 4 (is that one Dem I see - Sorry G) is not exactly running a full ticket. But one without a head makes the 4 look a lot more like giant killers. What a year, the year the itsy bitsy teeny weeny parties wagged the big dogs - both of them. Could take snipes at both major slates from now to November, you know, I think I will do just that. " May 23, 11 10:16 PM

How long you say, until the penal laws are changed and political corruption becomes a capital punishment crime. How many roads must a man walk down . . . . As Mr. Zimmerman said - the answer is blowin in the wind. Or maybe when someone in Town understands that you don't ignore town code requirements you repeal them. Ah forget it more chance that the world will end at 6 pm last Saturday." May 23, 11 10:22 PM

Still No Word About Nuzzi Running

The problem is that the first day to obtain signatures on designating petitions (the required method of placing candidates on the ballot) is next Tuesday, June 7th. The petitions need to be printed and should be distributed to county committee members before that date. If Mr. Nuzzi does not indicate publicly prior to petitions going out with his name listed as candidate for Town Supervisor and then goes on to decline the designation, there is substantial case law that another candidate could not be substituted in his place. In similar circumstances Courts have found the designating petition named candidate to be fraudulent and have denied the Committee on Vacancies the right to substitute another candidate. In this case due to the publicity surrounding the will he or won't he accept would have a good election law attorney on the side of the Democrats salivating. (Of course a good Democratic election law counsel might have some difficulty swallowing a Democratic slate with only four of ten potential offices named and with only one of the four an actual enrolled Democrat).

At this point Mr. Wruck needs to make certain that Mr. Nuzzi is as they say "in it to win it" and not just a name on the petitions to be declined in July. For were Mr. Nuzzi to decline in July absent a significant and new change in circumstances, the Southampton Republican Party might have no candidate for Town Supervisor at all. The current Supervisor (an enrolled member of the Independence [not as sometimes reported the "Independent" Party) has certainly not in this Proud Democrats' opinion earned that "free ride". I certainly hope that the Town Republicans will provide the voters with a viable alternative choice come November and not with a bugler playing retreat. Come on guys/gals, you never made my life that easy when I was the Town Democratic Chair! Sorry G, but I have to call them as I see them. The mighty Southampton Republican machine sure has fallen on hard times (they do miss you Marietta), it is a shame the Southampton Dems can't find enrolled Democrats to run as candidates. And then, of course, what will the Southampton Conservatives do? Oh yes could be lots of election law litigation this July and August. Better than the smell of napalm in the morning. " Jun 1, 11 10:39 PM

Nuzzi Declines Republican Nomination For Supervisor

Now who will the Conservatives select as a candidate for supervisor? Or will they leave it blank? Will the Republicans cross endorse a Conservative for Supervisor? Will the Republicans cross endorse the current Supervisor? Are there any enrolled Democrats or Republicans in Southampton Town anymore? They both seem to run members of other parties for town board positions. Will Bill Frankenbach arise from the ground or continue spinning six feet under? What has happened to the mighty Southampton Town Republican machine? How long will Ernie Wruck remain Town Chairman (Town Leader)? Who is the first vice chairman of the Town Republican Committee? Will a wake be held for the once proud Town Republican Committee? What say ye, Bill Masterson? Will Linda Kabot after allowing the defendants in her lawsuit to honorable settle the matter reemerge as the predominant force in Town Republican politics? Well the Town Republicans are now only 6 weeks, 500 valid signatures and a name and body away from having a candidate for Town Supervisor, One final question - Who runs the Town Democratic Committee - its elected Town Chairman or the Independence Party enrolled Supervisor? Gee kinda makes you nostalgic for the Southampton Party days, oh it is the nostalgic Southampton Party days in Southampton Town." Jun 6, 11 5:58 PM

Its like Kinky Friedman told me "I've acclimated myself to the younger generation referring to me as 'dude.' In fact, I think I like it a little better than 'mister; because it means they think I'm hip, with it, now, today, or mod, as my father calls it. But when a man/woman in his/her forties . . . calls you 'dude', it's a rather saddening experience for more reasons than I wish to go into here."

So clam, which am I to think of the 'dude' reference by you?

You ought to read everything I write carefully as a whole and stop parsing out individual words. If you get that reading as a whole down, you might even see the words between the lines.

Mr. Nuzzi never public expressed an interest in running for Supervisor, that was Mr. Wruck's hope. Wonder how it feels to be the first Town Republican leader not to run a Supervisor candidate. Past leaders even found sacrificial lambs to run against Fred and the Southampton Party.

Fortunately its quite easy to write in candidates with the new computerized balloting system. At the moment I'm thinking of writing in "clam pie"." Jun 6, 11 7:33 PM

I have been informed that Bill Frankenbach is very much still alive and well. It is Samuel Clemens who is longer breathing. I apologize to Bill and wish him well. " Jun 6, 11 9:26 PM

New York State Senate Approves Same-Sex Marriage Legislation

Congratulations to all: gay, bi, and straight. Tonight this state acquired 4 new profiles in courage and took another step closer to equality for all. Makes you think there still might be hope we won't let the greed of a few destroy the planet for all. " Jun 25, 11 12:07 AM

Lance Kabot Says He's Interested In Supervisor Seat

This little episode reminds me of a quote from Noam Chomsky "Since we don't participate, we don't control and we don't even think about questions of vital importance. We hope someone is paying attention, who has some competence. Let's hope the ship has a captain, since we're not taking part in what's going on"

Anarchy comes to the Southampton Town Republican Committee.

But this does not resolve the question of who will govern as political factions beget political factions. In these times when public officials shun ties to political organizations and rely upon the cult of personality, how do we ever know what we are getting? As political egos collide do we as tax payers collectively benefit from government as a collection of opposing foxes in the hen house? Are we better protected from corruption and cronyism or do we see only a shift in power elites? More importantly as CTA once sang "Does anyone really care"?

There once was a peace movement slogan "Suppose they gave a war and nobody came". Well suppose they had an election and nobody ran?
" Jul 2, 11 12:20 PM

Southampton Town Will Need To Come Up With Millions To Meet Tax Cap Next Year

The 2 percent tax cap legislation includes numerous exemptions and most importantly (albeit political quick sandish) the ability to pierce the cap with a 60 percent vote of the Town Board. The very same 3 votes it takes to pass any legislation in the Town. So while the cap serves as a wake-up call to elected officials it is not in and of itself an executioner. The political ramifications of voting to pierce the cap, should that be the route followed will fall only about the one council member running with opposition. The question she must answer is what is best for the future of the Town - a draconian budget or a pierced budget cap. So we will see how well the Supervisor and Board Members can play together for the good of the Town, or whether the discussion becomes a finger pointing childish contest with a primary concern of political posturing. Lots of difficult decisions to be made, especially in a local election year. Of course I don't recall hearing any anti-cap outcry from anyone one in Town Hall prior to its passage. Did no one, especially the Town's Chief Fiscal Officer, give any thought to its implications until after the fact? As Louis said to Rick "I'm shocked to discover there is gambling going on in this establishment"." Jul 19, 11 10:11 AM

Scalera Gets Independence Party Endorsement In Southampton Over Fleming

While Ernie Wruck may have failed at finding a candidate for Supervisor, he readily outflanked his Democratic counterpart, Gordon Herr, when it came to Frank MacKay and the Indiependence Party. Ernie has now achieved his primary goal of maintaining a majority of the Town Board come next January. Perhaps if the Dems and Independence Party members Thiele and Throne-Holst had spoken to Frank and his Executive Committee they might have convinced the Indies to at least give Bridget a Wilson-Pakula and a chance at a primary. Then again if the Dems had decided to give the second Council spot to an Independence Party member, Bridget might have received the Indie line with no primary. As it is now Bridget and Christine will be on the same ballot column which will only serve to cut deeper into Bridget's vote total. But then when the Democratic line will have 3 Independence Party members, 2 Republicans and only 1 Democrat its really hard to call it the Democratic Party line anymore. Shame on those who (i.e. Fred and Anna, Gordon) supposedly support Bridget for taking the Independence Party designation and Frank and his Executive Committee for granted. I'd have to say at this point that Mr. Wruck and the town Republicans have one upped Mr. Herr and the town Democrats. So the likelihood now stands that there will be not a single Democrat on the Town Board in January. Another reality lesson in finding that you reap what you sow. Those blaming Frank MacKay are looking at the wrong doorsteps to place fault. One need only read Bridget's own words - she anticipated getting the line but no one ever confirmed that to her. Another case of political malpractice on the part of the Southampton Dems. Now they will scurry around trying to find away to kill the Independence Party designating petitions and deprive Ms. Scalera of the line. Too bad they no longer have any election lawyers with the experience to pull that off. Too bad for Bridget and too bad for the Town. Bridget's only hope is that the Southampton electorate is a pretty smart one - they know how to bullet vote and they know a good official when they see one. Shame on the Southampton Democrats for not doing a better job of protecting their only non-judicial elected official in town. But then they don't really seem to care all that much about what party their candidates are enrolled in. Let's see how much campaigning opponentless Anna does for Bridget. Any bets on that one? " Jul 20, 11 10:55 AM

Meg, as the character Jules Winfield as scripted by QuentinTarantino quoting the bible liked to say before firing his gun Ezekiel 25:17. "The path of the righteous man is beset on all sides by the inequities of the selfish and the tyranny of evil men. Blessed is he who, in the name of charity and good will, shepherds the weak through the valley of darkness, for he is truly his brother's keeper and the finder of lost children. And I will strike down upon thee with great vengeance and furious anger those who attempt to poison and destroy my brothers. And you will know my name is the Lord when I lay my vengeance upon you!

Well sorry Meg but I ain't the Lord, I don't seek vengeance or feel any furious anger. My shepherd days are long gone. I don't volunteer and the bed that has been made for those who chose to ignore my warnings is the one upon which they must now sleep. I'm just a curious hippie in the hamptons onlooker and sometime commentator. Politics is a game of hardball and my spikes hang permanently on the wall. I just kinda sit back and watch the rookies who think they know and understand it all commit one political error after another. God bless them all." Jul 20, 11 3:31 PM

Your version of history does not match the historical facts. Sorry, but whoever or where ever you got your info from, it is wrong. You want to criticize provide some dates and facts, otherwise make like a clam. You call a party that runs 2 republics, 3 independents and 1 democrat a democratic party. Sorry clam you really don't have a clue. Where was the dem leadership when it came to talking to Frank MacKay. I'll match my abilities against anyone in this town, any day, any time. You can repeat your inaccuracies concerning my tenure as townchair as often as you'd like, but they are inaccurate or blatant lies. Check the press obits for the stories that ran when I Chaired the Dems. Grow up. And by the way why don't you identify yourself, your background, your axes to grind. Don't you dare criticize me and hide behind a clam pie. I let your last pack of bs slide as I had finished saying what I wanted to on the subject. Come out into the open and we can talk somemore, otherwise sayonara." Jul 20, 11 5:35 PM

Now if anyone on the Dem side had any understanding of the process and the way Wilson-Pakula's are granted by only Frank and his Country Executive Committee, they would have carried Opportunity To Ballot Petitions. But I guess that's something nobody thought about or know about. Any one mention that to you Bridget? Too bad tomorrow is the last day to file those. Guess all the bright lites around here just want to bad mouth Frank and the Indie Party. Well folks if you're worried about a wilson-pakula you carry opportunity to ballot petitions and create a write-in primary. But then what does a retired hippy in the hamptons and sometime commentator know. There is an interesting rumor floating around about Anna's prior knowledge of Bridget's not getting the line, but that's just a rumor at this point. But nothing in local politics stays secret too long. Anyone heard any rumors about this?" Jul 20, 11 7:44 PM

From Japanese さようなら (sayōnara), farewell (formal and final). Just in case you don't understand japanese. " Jul 20, 11 8:58 PM

Republican Trustees Candidates Endorsed By Democrats

The cross endorsements pretty much guaranteeing them the top two of the five spots to be elected. Thus Bill Pell now has to win one of three remaining spots. To the extend Bill wanted to insure the reelection of these two regardless of his own placement he will probably be successful, to the extent it might increase his odds of getting re-elected not likely.
As to cross endorsements destroying the democratic party - well in order to be destroyed you need to first have a democratic party. The are people enrolled as democrats serving on a "democratic" county committee from the Southampton Election Districts, some of them truly are democrats, others don't think party affiliation really matters. Thus the birth rebirth ad infinitum of the Fred Thiele's and Anna Holsts and their cult of personality followers. What will Fred think when Anna decides to challenge him for the assembly seat he holds. Probably what Tony Bullock thought when Fred announced he was gonna run against Tony for County Legislative Seat. And so the more things change the more they stay the same. But a "democratic" town ticket with one democrat running for a policy making position, no town justice candidate (well Justice Burke, another republican, did carry petitions to get himself the Dem line also. So perhaps the democratic party is not so much a candidate cult of personality party as it is a garage sale. Or maybe the Republicans and 3rd party candidates are just luckier or smarter." Jul 27, 11 9:11 PM

Independence Party Picks Raise Questions

A good candidate already has won a council seat with just one major line. Steve Kenney, a democrat, running as an incumbent on the Democratic Line received more votes than his republican opponent did with the Republican, Independence and Conservative lines. There is no reason to believe that Bridget Fleming, a democrat, running as an incumbent on the Democratic Line will not achieve the same outcome. If anything, the Southampton electorate has shown itself to be well educated on the issues and the candidates, understanding both the concept of bullet voting(voting for only one rather than two council candidates) and ticket splitting(voting for candidates of different parties). Well Frank MacKay has the Wilson-Pakula authority under his party's bylaws not all of Frank's selections are ultimately elected to public office. Bridget Fleming has a strong record to run on. Her re-election will be in the best interest of the Town and do not doubt for one minute that a majority of those voting come November will be casting their ballots for Bridget Fleming. Bridget Fleming is the only candidate for town council who has a track record the voters can take comfort in. The other three are unknowns with no voting record on the issues of importance to this town. Voters in both Southampton and East Hampton are too sophisticated to be taken in by the games played by the bosses of the third party (affectionately referred to as the "itsy bitsy parties"). Those leaders may at times be the tail that wags the major party dogs, but nobody, major or itsy bitsy party leaders wag the voters. Not even total ineptness by the major party can blunt the ground swell of support for a proven councilperson such as Bridget Fleming. As Steve Kinney how much not have the Independence Party line meant. And the voters willing ask Bridget Fleming the same question the first wednesday after the first tuesday in November." Jul 28, 11 5:05 PM

You certainly nailed my inference Mr. Wheeler. Yes, I do believe Ms. Fleming is the good goods.

As for Wilson over Tenaglia, it certainly didn't garner Ms. Fleming the Conservative line as was alleged at the time. Truthfully I don't know that outside of members of the PD community and political insiders, that the vote for Wilson was any big deal. Think about who showed up to speak at the Board meeting or write to the blogs or print weeklies. Not many Average Townsfolk. So I don't see that vote as indicative of a lack of independence, far from it, given that Ms. Fleming received no favor from the vote it is perhaps more a showing of her independence as a public servant. Now its really up to Chief Wilson to prove she might a choice and that we as town residents have benefited from that choice.

As for the sordid Mr. Sordi affair, I was among the earliest to counsel the Supervisor against that appointment. Unfortunately for all of us the discussions concerning what to do about Ms. Holst's choice for Town Attorney and the manner in which he handled that office as well as whatever agreement was executed to obtain his resignation(Town Attorney's being appointed for a term of office and not serving simply at the will of the Town Board) were conducted as they should be in executive session. The Town Board members have a fiduciary responsibility not to reveal the contents of those meetings or by its terms the termination agreement. So again while I would have counseled Ms. Fleming not to vote for Mr. Sordi had she sought my counsel, but she did not. And parenthetically had no reason to seek my counsel. To the extend there was a cover-up by Ms. Throne-Holst, she certainly had enough warning about Mr. Sordi's performance in Nassau County to be wary of seeking his appointment for our Town. But then I have always felt a Town Attorney ought to live in the Town she or he serves. In this case the Supervisor was able to maneuver the termination qua resignation in a manner which foreclosed any of the sitting Town Board members from discussing it. So I would come to the conclusion opposite the one you infer, to wit: had Ms. Fleming or any of the other three Board members "gone public", they would have subjected the Town (meaning us taxpayers) to potential litigation and financial liability. Crazy as it may be, that is unfortunately how it works.

So unless you have some other grievances about Ms. Fleming's tenure these arguments fail to convince me that Bridget Fleming is not the good goods. But, of course, that is simply one person's opinion. And none of us, save for the loyalist of sycophants(and yes, we certainly seem to have more than our fair share of those, especially among, well, my other comments make that pretty clear), none of us, save for the loyalist of sycophants(yes men, toadies, flunkies, fawners, flatterers) is or should be in agreement with our elected officials on all issues. A good public official needs to consider the overall good, and once the overall good is the prime concern, smaller interests are by definition going to be upset at some decisions. But you know all that already, dontcha?.

I do appreciate your response. You picked some issues that should be explored. Unfortunately the one who really needs to respond to the sordid Sordi affair is running unopposed. So doubtful we will ever learn how she came to select him and for which Nassau County Democrat - the outgoing electorally defeated County Exec or the Nassau County Democratic Chair.

" Jul 28, 11 9:23 PM

Republican Trustees Candidates Endorsed By Democrats

Aye, there's the rub. If one believes in the philosophy of the Democratic Party or the Republican or the Conservative or the Working Families or the lack of philosophy of the Independence Party then one ought to be an enrollee of that party. Those, and we all know who they are, who have chosen to move from blank or Republican to the Independence Party as a means to insure themselves the Independence Line taking for granted that they will receive the Democratic Line are being dishonest to both the voting public and themselves. If they are willing to engage in such deceit at the basis of their candidacies how can we trust anything they do or say thereafter. What is their fear of proclaiming proudly, in this case, we are Democrats?
It is not a question of those elected under the banners of different parties working together as public officials. We always hope that will happen, but more often than not devotion to the well-being of the Town, like that of the nation, is subject to partisan game playing. In the two party system we have adopted and that has served us well since 1789 (do not confuse the Conservative, Working Families and Independence Parties with true third parties - true third parties have their own philosophies and run their own candidates, not cross-endorsements of the major party candidates). New York is one of the few states to allow cross-endorsements and of those few when last I looked the only state to allow cross-endorsed candidates to have more than one line on the ballot. Let the Democrats run Democrats, the Republicans run Republicans, the Conservatives run Conservatives, the Working Families run Working Families and the Independence Party its enrollees and leave us see which of the five recognized parties in the State is victorious at the polls. Want to end the insanity its really quite simple, if not extremely politically unpalatable, BAN CROSS-ENDORSEMENTS.
As the last pragmatic Speaker of the House of Representatives, Tip O'Neill, was fond of reminding us - all politics is local.
Yes work together for the public good once elected, but chose one of the two major parties and do battle in the streets. A political tent can be a big umbrella, but it is one large umbrella, not two or three or four overlapping. There are certain enough qualified enrolled Democrats and Republicans in this Town to run full slates at every biennial Town Election. Running a slate with more non-party enrollees than party enrollees is an insult to every enrollee of that party, who expect their party to support those they have every reason to believe share the basic tenets of their party's philosophy.
It is time to eschew those who wish to gain the advantages of having major party endorsements but hide behind enrollment in what are for all intents and purposes sham political parties. If they wish to enroll as members of the Independence Party let them run solely on that Party. If they are, in fact, the best candidates, they shouldn't worry about what single line they run on.
For me this year the Democratic slate on row A has one candidate for Town Board and I believe now two candidates for Trustee. Wanna deal a death blow to the Independence/Conservative Party election manipulations, don't vote for any candidate with either or both of those party designations.
Or continue to allow the two party system to devolve into a bunch of cult of personality craving individuals with loyalty only to themselves and a following of sycophants blind to all others." Jul 29, 11 9:09 PM

Bishop Votes In Favor Of Debt Ceiling Deal; President Signs Measure

What can we do to fix America?
1. Mandatory death penalty for legislators who accept “bribes” in any form, including campaign contributions, from any special or other interest group.
2. Start manufacturing products instead of importing goods and outsourcing jobs.
3. Remove the legal fiction that corporations have citizens rights.
4. In times of war or whatever we decide to call violence requiring a U.S. military presence, require the members of Congress to serve on the front lines with the grunts they supposedly represent.
5. Hold as unconstitutional any law that seeks to regulate “morality” (i.e. reproductive rights), leave that to the religious leaders to tend to their own individual flocks.
6. Guarantee every American a minimum wage and health benefits. Governments have obligations to their citizenry, go back and read your history. Government should not exist simply to provide support for the wealthiest corporations and individuals.
7. We have an infrastructure sadly in need of being rebuilt. Bring back updated versions of the WPA, etc. Jobs mean wages, mean purchases with mean more jobs, which mean more wages. The greater the taxable pool the less burden on each individual.
8. Tax individuals who do not do some form of government services (i.e. military or civilian) for a minimum of two years at a higher rate than those who do complete government service.
9. Tax business who outsource jobs at a higher rate than those that create jobs right here in the U.S. of A
10. Revamp the education system, our system of education is beyond being archaic. We are no longer the leaders in new ideas and technology. When we are we find ourselves behind others in implementation.
11. Create rules of decorum for U.S. Senators and Congresspersons, which if violated, require mandatory removal from office. (Might help the childish ideological b.s. that gets spouted and focus on real debate about real issues that confront us as a society and as a member of the world community)
12. Reinstitute the equal time provisions of the FCC and eliminate propaganda network machines that make the NAZI propaganda mechanism look like it came out of ding dong school (with apologies to Miss Frances).
13. Realize that while a financial institute may be “too big to fail”, corporate officers and board members are not. When an institute starts to fail, remove and replace the corporate officers and board members, incarcerate and fine them.
Government derives its power from the people, all of the people, not just the wealthiest, not just the ones with lobbyists and big campaign finance donations. Someone needs to remind the radical right and the radical left that America’s greatness was built on compassion for its citizens (albeit sometimes slow in recognizing who its citizens were) as well as strength to protect them from enemies internal and external. Not all those enemies are other nations or individuals, some of them are famine, sickness, disregard for the environment, ad infinitum.
Government has a responsibility as great or greater to its weakest segments as to its strongest and wealthiest. Don't like paying taxes, as they used to say love it or leave it. That door option applies to all sides of the argument. So I say to you, if you don't want to pay the appropriate amount of taxes for the protective umbrella of the United States of America, leave. Find a better place to live. I double dare you. " Aug 3, 11 1:02 PM

You obviously have no understanding or knowledge of what communism or patriotism are. You would also be wise to review the law of libel and slander. I will match my honorable discharge from military service with yours, you do have one don't you? Now delineate for me exactly what statements I made above that even suggest a resemblance to "borderline communist view point" or "as anti American as it gets". And while you are at it I'll have your name also Sir. Some may allow libel and slander but my good name is of more value to me than to see it besmirched by one such as you. By the way your use of the image of President Reagan is a smear to his good name and philosophy. As I depart I leave you with the words President Reagan would suggest to me to be most appropriate a smiling "27dan there there go again!" " Aug 3, 11 4:15 PM

"27dan there you go again!"" Aug 3, 11 4:25 PM

Mine is(USAF), you got a DD214? Know what one is? Ever serve in the military? And other than Calvin Coolidge and Herbert Hoover (you remember them two of our past Republican Presidents) who ever equated patriotism and big business. As for the constitutionality of the suggestions, show me the sections of the constitution that bar any of them for being implemented by Acts of Congress. By the way it was another Republican President, Richard NIxon, remember the guy who resigned, who first suggested a guaranteed minimum income to all Americans. You want to disagree with my opinions that's your right and I will defend it to the hilt, but my recollection of history is that same everyone who disagrees with me is a communist started with the National Socialist Party in Germany. It didn't work then and it won't work now. Putting our elected officials feet to the fire is hardly anti-American. But maybe you like non-elected lobbyists writing legislation to favor the special interests they represent. Hey that's cool if you think so, but don't complain about wasted spending and cost over runs. You can't have it all ways. Well, maybe you can. They have a name for those who espouse the political viewpoint that only their political viewpoint is the correct one. America you might be surprised to learn achieved greatness because divergent viewpoints have been encouraged and nurtured. Its way we have survived over 200 years as a republic. Take a good hard look at the first amendment, if you deign to call yourself a patriot. For it was the original and true American patriots who inserted the Bill of Rights into the Constitution to insure the prevention of tyranny by either the minority or majority. Now if you believe that free speech is a communist notion, we, as a nation, are in serious serious trouble. You can't read the parts you like (you know like the right to bear arms) and disregard the ones you don't like. That's what distinguishes patriotic Americans from purely partisan reactionaries. I would hope you are the former and not the latter. If you truly have substantive (that would exclude name calling and attempted character assassination) disagreements with my little list above I relish an intellectual discussion about them. One learns from those one disagrees with not those one agrees with. One need only keep open eyes, open ears and open mind. Leave the talking points to the mindless ones, who can regurgitate that which they never learned to chew and swallow." Aug 3, 11 5:02 PM

The threat to the American Republic and its democracy is equal from both extremes - left and right. Neither should be allowed to stand unchallenged. It is what happens when politics and political discourse becomes nothing more or less than a madison avenue campaign to sell different tooth pastes. Our country has always been best governed from the center. Like a good negotiation, America works best, when neither political spectrum walks away happy from the table. The alternative is either tyranny of the right or tyranny of the left, neither of them viable options to my way of thinking. Think of reading about the Lincoln - Douglas Debates in today's world of sound bites. How much shorter would the Gettysburg Address be on Fox News or MSNBC today. Well Fox News would probably report it as Prez says nation will not leave long and MSNBC would tell us President Lincoln reminded us we are four score and seven years old. Neither quite accurate or inaccurate, but neither an honest reporting job. When the most accurate reporting of the news tends to come from comedy shows and non-journalist blogs, the fourth estate has fallen greatly. All should be reading the writings of Locke, Paine, Thoreau, Adams, Jefferson et. al. before they lay claim to being the descendants of the founding patriots. Try the Federalist Papers. See how diverse opinions ran. And I can't recall seeing any naming calling between the philosophical factions. I thought name calling was something you did in kindegarten and grade school. " Aug 3, 11 5:25 PM

Well I imagine that all of those who espouse those views have signed pledges (adhering to the model set by those who actually tossed the tea into Boston Bay thus giving up their ability to consume it) which state that they will not use (1)public roads, (2) interstates(both of which come from taxpayer dollars, remember it was Dwight David Eisenhower(R) who started the interstate highway system, (3)buy any food which they have not grown or hunted on their own land, since otherwise it might come from a subsidized farm (of course they might have trouble leaving them homes staying off the roads like that and not wishing to breach the private property rights of their neighbors, etc), (4) have forsworn ever accepting social security retirement or disability benefits, (5) likewise medicare or medicaid, (6)if they actually ever served in the military(and I haven't seen anyone of them jump to respond to that question) never to accept an veteran's benefits, (7) if they could ride only on private roads they surely won't buy gas from an oil company receiving government subsidies (although more than likely they are violating oaths 1 and 2 when they do violate 7 and purchase gas, (8) never have sex (protected or otherwise) until they are married (to avoid impregnating a woman who might exercise her right to abortion), (9) never to have a federally guaranteed mortgage, and (10) never vote for any candidate who has violated pledges 1 through 9. And there are too many more pledges they would have to make to truly emulate those brave patriots who attended the party in Boston Harbor. Otherwise I suppose some might have to consider them as being hypocrites or socialists or communists. After all isn't that the argument they make here. If you take something from the government you are unpatriotic and down right communist. Are they the pot calling the kettle black? And their little comments to this thread seem to indicate, they couldn't possibly be hypocrites. No, not them. So gentlemen of the right what say ye, will you sign the oath, will you commit to living the life style your words would augur? Or do you chose to see a hypocrite whenever you are confronted by a mirror. Are you truly men of conviction? For in the end the adage, America love it or leave, applies equally to those on the right as to those on the left. So which side are you on?" Aug 3, 11 6:06 PM

If fairness is not an American virtue, then my friend, it is you who worship the totalitarian state, communist or otherwise. I suggest you reread, assuming you have read them to begin with, the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution of the United States and Amendments thereto, the Gettysburg Address, and the Federalist Papers.
As for "the way he tries to sneak in....". Its pretty apparently obvious, even you managed to notice it. And while we are at it, do you have some fear to set your true born christian name to your opinions? Or do you just like to try to sneak some things in.
I also take from your silence that you never graced the U.S. military with your presence.
Quite the patriot you are." Aug 3, 11 9:10 PM

Evidently those communists and communist sympathizers who control the stock market must not be satisfied with the lack of revenue enhancements contained in the Tea Party driven "non-comprised" debt ceiling agreement. You know the agreement dictated by the Tea Party minority of the House of Representatives. The blame falls squarely on them, not as you would claim on the President. This mess we find ourselves in has far more far right wing than center or left wing fingerprints upon it. You claimed victory in denying the President and the Democrats their bid for some revenue enhancements and now you must suffer the blame for the markets demise. Are they all communists? all those investors who are fleeing the marketplace now. The mirror in front of your face tells the tale of who is to blame. It has been all down hill economically since Clinton left office and the Republicans took charge of the economy. That's just a fact of history, ignore it, as your ilk generally does, but when the history books are written the blood of the American and world economy will be laid at right wing fingertips. Hope and promise do not veer far from the center. So swings the pendulum, so go our fates." Aug 4, 11 5:25 PM

Everyone knows that the failure to include revenue enhancements was due to the Tea Party members of Congress. Calling it a deal brokered by moderate dems and repubs is disingenuous at the least. And while we are at it let us take about the deregulation which lead to the downfall of the world economy and GDP forecasts. Nothing exists in a vacuum, though some would like to play that game. You can have your own opinion, but not, your own set of facts. And taxing oil companies is not quite accurate since it would be removing certain tax exemptions and preferences they receive. The debt ceiling doesn't help because it authorizes payments of debts and expenses which were previously committed to by Congress. The debt ceiling is one things, the budget process is another. The worldwide economic crisis which continues to this day can be laid at the feet of President Bush II and his economic advisers and friends. Accept that and then criticize President Obama all you want, but he has to play the hand with the cards that were dealt him and a Republican controlled and manipulated Congress which stonewalls him at every turn. As for what effect taxing corporations and small businesses making over 250k will further weaken the labor market and decrease the GDP even more is something we, unfortunately, will never know. For all we know, and we includes you, my friend, it would strengthen the labor market and increase the GDP even more. You don't need to be a weatherman to see which way the wind is blowing. So honestly where do they dig you people up. " Aug 4, 11 7:54 PM

A balanced budget amendment was proposed in 1994 or 1995 as I recall. It went nowhere as it should. Long before any so-called Tea Party existed. You all don't have a clue about how you are playing right into the hands of the Chinese Communist government. And don't underestimate the ability of the readers of these comments to understand the meaning of revenue enhancements which do not equal tax increases. But you have your own facts as well as your own opinions. But to paraphrase Orwell, some facts or more factual than others. You don't need to alter the constitution in order to clean up the economic mess you Republicans created with deregulation and wars against countries that never posed a threat to the US. Or are you still looking for WMD in Iraq? Only took President Obama what 2.5 years to get Bin Laden. But you go right ahead push for a balanced budget amendment that could very well our hands in matters of national defense and security. Simplistic responses and sound bites don't resolve complicated problems. And you served in the military when? And you don't utilize any of the benefits I mentioned in an early posting here? I love arguing with you all. It truly is better than the smell of napalm in the morning. " Aug 4, 11 9:52 PM

You still believe fairness is a communist doctrine? You never did indicate when you served in the armed services? Or agreed to forgo any of the benefits I managed. Yes wait til 2012. if your Tea Party minority tyranny in Congress doesn't destroy us before then. " Aug 4, 11 9:55 PM

This thread has apparently devolved to grade school level "nyah, nyah, nyahs" and "my father can beat your father" gibberish and sound bites. What could have been a robust discussion of philosophical differences and the strengths and weaknesses of each other’s arguments has settled into a bush league version of the minor league debates being conducted in the House and Senate internally and externally with the White House. It is a shame because there do seem to be people on both sides of the argument here quite capable of a rational, intellectual discussion, without name calling or other derogatory comments. To those on both sides who have displayed the ability to discuss in a civilized manner I doff my hat, while I may disagree with some of you philosophically on some or all points we are all in agreement that we love our country and that changes are needed if our nation is to stay viable and continue its role in world leadership, political and economic. Please let the voices of sanity on both sides prevail over insanity and lack of decorum. We, each of us, regardless of philosophical bent, owe that much to our nation and to each other. Let us all hang together or surely we shall all hang separately. The philosophical debates now being aired on no different than those among the founders of this country. States Rights versus Federal Rights, Rights of the Individual versus Rights of the Government. The only change from then to now is communications are faster and more available to all, and enormous growth in technological advances in science and propaganda techniques (qua advertising)and a globe of nations which are much closer and much more dangerous. We ignore the lessons of history at our own peril. A nation divided cannot stand. " Aug 5, 11 1:32 PM

It is now being reported that Standard and Poor's one of the world's bond rating agency is expected to downgrade the US debt. The report states in part:
"Officials reasons given will be the political confusion surrounding the process of raising the debt ceiling, and lack of confidence that the political system will be able to agree to more deficit reduction. A SOURCE SAYS REPUBLICANS SAYING THAT THEY REFUSE TO ACCEPT ANY TAX INCREASES AS PART OF A LARGER DEAL WILL BE PART OF THE REASON CITED".
How far most this blanket refusal on the part of the Tea Party adherents go before it starts to give aid and comfort to our enemies?
I am reminded of the 5 year old brat who had the football when we were kids. If he couldn't be the quarterback he'd threaten to take his ball and go home.
The remnants of the al qaeda terrorist organization and its allies must be jubilant as they watch Bin Laden's dream of destroying the western world's economy and putting into collapse must be. During this season of Ramadan they must be anxiously celebrating the success of the Tea Party as a success of their own. If you think these reprehensible terrorists are not laughing at us, you have no understanding of them. Whatever battles we have won on the ground and lives that have been lost in the pursuit of defeating this enemy of all of us will be for naught if we do not start to work as one nation, red, white and blue. Not red alone. Not blue alone
" Aug 5, 11 6:16 PM

Standard and Poors:

"The majority of Republicans in Congress continue to resist any measure that would raise revenues, a position we believe Congress reinforced by passing the act"

"the political brinksmanship of recent months highlights what we se as America's governance and policymaking becoming less stable, less effective, and less predictable than what we prreviously believed"

Draw whatever conclusions you wish from Standard and Poors actions and reasoning.

So the nation and the world continues to suffer economically and our enemies and threats to our national security continue to celebrate, but some few kept to their principles. My principles, right or wrong has now replaced my country right or wrong.

Ronald Reagan, if confronted by a small group of liberal Democrats threatening to prevent a rise in the debt ceiling trying his presidency, would have just invoked the 14th Amendment.


" Aug 6, 11 8:48 PM

2012 Southampton Town Budget Will Include Staff Cuts

That the members of a collective bargaining unit appear in uniform at public meetings don't not create fear in this democrat. While under the Taylor Law the members of police collective bargaining units may not strike they do not forgo their First Amendment Rights to free speech. Nor do I believe the wearing of the uniform constitutes "the presence of massed, uniformed, paramilitary troops." Were the members of the collective bargaining unit to be brandishing gas masks, carrying riot gear, uzi's, etc I might agree the First Amendment line had been breached, but such has not been the case.

Mention was made of the relatively low crime level in Town as somehow lessening the danger to members of the Town PD. Such reasoning neglects to consider that every time an officer stands on the side of the road he or she places their life at risk from some yahoo semi or fully intoxicated cowboy on wheels or some individual hopped up on drugs. No matter the level of crime these women and men are at risk each shift they work. It takes only one nutcase to inflict severe bodily damage.

If you believe our elected officials are intimidated by uniform police officers than vote for their opponents. Like most collective bargaining units the strength in relationships between the unit members and the elected officials is measured in the units ability to raise campaign funds and volunteers.

While there may well exist budgetary savings in the Town PD discharging veteran police officers on the basis of years employed may not provide the best solution to the economic problem.

What would the cost savings be if all current and retired Town employees had to pay 25 or 50 per cent of their health care premiums?

While it behooves our elected Town officials to review all current expenses and revenue producers, they should do so viewing them as a forest and not as individual trees. Let us not attempt to single out one segment of public employees and blame that segment on decades of injudicious decision making. There is certainly more than enough blame to share by all sides.
" Sep 24, 11 1:54 PM

None of the above, Goldenboy, I simply posed the following question "What would the cost savings be if all current and retired Town employees had to pay 25 or 50 per cent of their health care premiums?"

As you can see my question pertained to all current and retired Town employees, with no exceptions.

I do not speak for the PBA or any other Town Bargaining Units. Just a simple question. What would the annual savings to the Town Taxpayers be if current and retired Town employees were required to pay a portion of their health insurance costs?

Are we clear now, Senator Plutarsky, that I did not make a declaratory statement?

" Sep 25, 11 12:49 PM

Youth In GOP See Changes On Horizon

Michael Wright has gotten the Town’s political history wrong.
During the 1980’s and 90’s despite the heavy Republican enrollment advantages numerous candidates who did not have the Republican endorsement or line served on the Town Board. Michael you might want to talk with Pat Neumann, Doug Penney, Roberta Hunter and Joanna Ferraro-Levy . Not a Republican candidate in that group. If memory serves me well need even an enrolled Republican in that group. However in the 90’s they along with Fred Thiele formed a non-Republican elected Town Board majority.
It is true that Pat Neumann was first elected with Republican Marty Lang. But that year Mr. Lang was the Democatic, not the Republican candidate for Supervisor. Yes a long long history of divisions in the Town’s Republican Party: feuds to rival the Hatfields and McCoys.
Yes it is true that Fred Thiele was an enrolled Republican when he was elected Supervisor, but not as the Republican candidate. Thiele’s first Supervisor victory came on the Southampton Party line, then on the Democratic line. Fred’s coattails were long enough to give him and his running mates control of the Town Board in the 90’s.
While the Republican old guard has had its fair share and more of Town Board control it has not been an invincible machine for a long long time.
It is highly misleading to say that in 2009 11,381 voters were either registered with the Independence Party or unaffiliated. The fact is the bulk of those were unaffiliated with any political party or “blanks” in the political vernacular. The remaining fragments of those voters were enrollees of the Conservative, Independence and Working Families Parties.
But Mr. Wright, you can start to redeem yourself as a historian of Southampton Town politics and elections by discovering the year, public office and names of the candidates who finished in a dead heat in an election in Southampton Town not so very long ago. Yes a tie. A hint: the Independence Party did not yet exist when the tie occurred.
This is a Town where political history has oft times strayed from the traditional path. Will this year be any different? Well this year we get to see how Southampton Town voters feel about write-in candidates.
" Oct 6, 11 6:38 PM

In A Reversal, Southampton Town Board Converts Budget To Preliminary Spending Plan and Adds Another Public Hearing

“I just want to say that it is my job to lead by example,” she said. “And it was clear during the course of the discussion today that the majority had caucused over this and decided to bring it forward again despite the 5-0 vote to handle this matter differently, to again press the point of the conversion.”

Translation:

The one leading is usually at the head of the pack, not the rear following a stampede. This quote is worthy of inclusion in the George Orwell dictionary of "newspeak".

Good to see that one person can still make a difference when it comes to insuring public transparency of the budget process. Thank you Marietta.
Thank you Nancy. But where were the voices of the candidates for Town Board. Oh there was one voice there Linda Kabot. Good to see the Supervisor's feet held to the fire. Thank you too, Linda." Oct 14, 11 7:55 PM

Southampton Campaign Diary: Throne-Holst Raises Most In Contributions

A "town official" should not be commenting about a candidates political campaign finance reports. If this "town official" did so on taxpayers' time she should be disciplined, docked pay, dismissed and/or reported to the District Attorney. Town taxpayer time should be devoted to the work of the taxpayers, not political re-election campaign finance or campaigning in any facet. Guess for some its just really hard to keep the hand out of the cookie jar. Some might even suggest it smells of arrogance. Who will the Supervisor blame for this? The illegal contributions she blamed on the Board of Elections. Some people have a remarkable aptitude for accepting responsibility for their actions, others do not.
" Oct 20, 11 6:02 PM

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