Archive for April, 2008

STATE AUDITOR RUNNING SCARED; TRYING TO STOP THE MOVE TOWARD AN INSPECTOR GENERAL

April 27, 2008

Actually, I kind of like State Auditor Tom Wagner…but he is dead wrong on this issue.  He does NOT want an Inspector General. He is trying to “back-door his opposition; in a typical Delaware secretive way. He has had a bill introduced (HB 351) which would change his title to “AUDITOR GENERAL”. He has been attending legislative hearings, and meeting in private with some of his legislative friends, almost begging them to stop considering any legislation to create the position of Inspedtor General.  Why?  BECAUSE HE WILL LOSE THE RIGHT TO PICK AND CHOOSE WHICH CASES HE WANTS TO INVESTIGATE. He would also lose his right to NOT get to the bottom of things.  He would lose his right to NOT really investigate waste fraud and corruption.  He will also lose the right to go unsupervised. He could continue to do just whatever he wants to, and not do whatever he doesn’t to do. 

You’ve got to remember, he is scared about whether or not he can get re-elected.  Remember, he had an opponent last time whose name no one ones, and I still don’t know it…but that unknown opponent got about 40% of the vote, and didn’t even campaign, and had no real credentials.  It’s obvious that any one with any credentials at all, and with a name that we could remember, could probably beat Wager in what is expected to be another Democratic landslide victory this November.

Wagner would have to answer to an Inspector General. He would have to do whatever the Inspector General asked him to.  He would have to submit air-tight cases, and, in short, he would really, have to participate in stopping waste, fraud and corruption on a regular basis.

As most of you know, the position of Inspector General exists in 30 states. Inspector Generals actively seek out crime, waste, and corruption.  IGs have full powers to pursue cases from start to finish.  They present such complete open honest independent investigations that Attorney Generals wind up prosecuting such cases 97% of the time in the states which have Inspector Generals.

Wagner figures that if the legislature adds the word “General” on to his title of “Auditor”, we will all think that he automatically will do his job differently.  It’t another insult to our intelligence.

By the way the Attorney General, Beau Biden by name, is also against the idea of having an Inspector General.  He maintains that it would be a duplication of the Attorney General’s office and the State Auditor’s function.  IT WOULD NOT BE A DUPLICATION, AS IT IS NOT A DUPLICATION IN THE THIRTY STATES THAT HAVE SUCH A POSiTION.  The Attorney General and the State Auditor are political positions in Delaware, which means there is a huge danger that politics come into play almost all the time with the present system. 

The State Auditor, Tom Wagner, and Attorney General Beau Biden, have no logical argument against the position of Inspector General and will not contact the other States with Inspector Generals, as I have; to discover that the position is exteremly effective in dealing with waste, fraud and corruptiont. 

IF YOU CARE ABOUT DIRECTLY DEALING WITH WASTE, FRAUD AND CORRUPTING IN AN INDEPENDENT NON-POLITICAL WAY, THEN CONTACT YOUR STATE LEGISLATORS AND TELL THEM NOT TO PASS HB 351.  Wouldn’t it be nice to have a person and adequate  staff to do nothing but really investigate waste, fraud and corruption objectively?

YOU can make it happen….DO IT….TELL YOUR LEGISLATORS TO VOTE “YES” FOR INSPECTOR GENERAL, AND VOTE “NO” ON SOME STUPID TITLE OF “AUDITOR GENERAL”.  Sorry, Mr. Wagner…you are just simply wrong on this issue.  You promised me a year ago that you would contact other states and let us know what other state auditors think of the issue…you never checked, or, if you did and you never revealed the results.   Watch out, Tom, this coming election could be eye-opener….or, in your case, perhaps a door closing as far as you are concerned.

POPE’S VISIT TO NEW YORK CITY 1965, NOT ONE OF MY BETTER MOMENTS

April 18, 2008

One thing about being 71 years of age is that you have gathered an incredible list of memories.  Every now and then some current events cause flashbacks, which you hadn’t thought about for years.  In this case I hadn’t given this much thought in 43 years…POPE PAUL VI visited America for the first time ever…where else?  New York City…..Yankee Stadium, the same Yankee Stadium at which the present Pope will say Mass today.

Back in 1965 bodyguarning the Pope was one of those police assignments which stick out; almost as much as the Beatles bodyguarding assignment. The Pope’s visit back in 1965 stands out for another reason; it showed how sick pathological gamblers really are.

Our office, the Bureau of Special Services, had the Pope’s bodyguarding assignment from the moment he got off the plane at what is now called Kennedy Airport, to the moment he got back on that same plane after the Mass at Yankee stadium.

It was a nightmare; especially for me, who had to compulsively feed my addiction, while having the responsibility of being part of the team of detectives responsible for the safety of the Holy Father himself.  I was low man on the totum pole; the rookie in the office, in my mid-wenties.  The very first step in the assignment was getting the Pope from the airport into NYC.  That consisted of a convoy of more freakin’ police cars, marked and un-marked, and helicopters than I thought the police department owned 

I had this logistic problem to solve.  I just had to get some bets in at Aquaduct Race track, without skipping a beat in my bodyguarding assignment.  It just so happened that the trip from the airport goes along the Vanwick Expressway….only a half mile from the race track.  I was riding solo in an unmarked car, at the very end of the convoy. I lucked out. The way those convoys work is that the rincipal vehicle  (in which the  Pope was riding) stays in the fast lane and the rest of the convoy rides with two wheels in the fast lane, and the other two wheels in the middle lane; to be in a position to intervene with any vehicle which may try to get to the lead vehicles, including the Pope’s. Riding dead last in the convoy…I saw my chance at a exit ramp.  I shot up the ramp, made a quick left turn on to Queen’s streets, headed right to the race track. With lights flashing and siren wailing, I raced at 80mph to the parking lot of Aquaduct Racetrack. I knew where my friend the security guard was stationed. I gave him my list of horses which I wanted to bet on and gave him my betting money (which was the proceeds of a bad check, which I had cashed the not before). I jumped back in the car, retraced my route, hit the expressway and caught up the convoy just before we hit the tunnel to the city…luckily alathugh in the fast lane the convoys go slow and caustiously, otherwise I never would have caught them. My “missing in action” was not detected.

After a couple of ceremonies here and there throughout the day, we went to the scheduled Mass at Yankee Stadium. The day had been beautiful…but, as if God wanted to punish me for deserting His Pope to bet horses, the weather turned bitterly cold…and I mean bitterly.
Any one who ever attended a N. Y. Giant football game in the winter knows what the Yankee Stadium winds are like. All the cops on duty, detectives and uniformed cops, were running around buying up longjohns from local Jewish merchants in that section of the south bronx. The merchants were charging cops $25 for longjohns, (three times the regular price). I understand that the regular 44th precinct cops got even with those merchants later that week. But for now, at least all the cops were relatively warm…with one exception…ME. Remember, I gave all my longjohn money to a racetrack security guard to bet for me.

I was frozen solid, teeth chattering, shaking…I mean freezing. I was stationed at the end of a first row aisle, surveying the crowd for strange movements or whatever else might constitute a breach in security. People were beginning to stare at me because of how I was shaking and looking around. A uniform cop came over to me, and I had to show my shield to prove I was one of the good guys.

As the Mass ended, we assumed our regular walking bodyguarding mode. I grabbed the evening version of the Daily News as we passed a newstand just before we got in the cars for the trip back to the airport to deliver Il PAPA back to Rome. The race results showed showed that I lost, again.

We got to the airport where our morning, noon, and nigth assignment was about to end. At the airport the Pope gave each detective in group detail a special blessing and a beautiful blessed gold Papal Holy Medal. Important recognition gesture, right? A real keepsake from an historic event, right? I couldn’t care less. All I cared about was the fact that I had lost all my money again. Then it hit me…..”Roosevelt Harness race track was still running, and I had time to make the last three races”.
Ah, hell, I have no money….but, yes, I did have a gold medal. I immediately offered it to one of my partners for $20. Twenty bucks wasn’t all that much…but it got me 4 or 5 bets the track.
I lost there too of course. I had to flash my badge at a gas station to get gas, and sulked all the way home. Do I emember the Pope’s visit back in 1965…you BET, I do. You can BET I’ll never forget it. It is a meaningful reminder of how a mental disorder causes one to take many twisted turns while in the throes of an addiction. I just hope there is not some detective working at Yankee Stadium tonight waiting for the Mass to end, so he can get to some race track after dropping off the Pope at the airport. I pity that guy, whoever he may be…he won’t relish his memory of being that close to a Pope.

ERIC HOFFER WROTE ABOUT MARYANNE

April 6, 2008

Eric Hoffer wrote an incredible book called THE TRUE BELIEVER….he didn’t know it at the time, but he was writing about MARYANNE McGONEGAL. Maryanne passed away at approximately 4am last Saturday morning.  I was fortunate to have known her for about 25 years… she was truly a TRUE BELIEVER

True Believers have an interesting profile: they are often the first ones to raise important issues/ they are right/ they are the most informed people about their topics (she was the only person I have ever met who actually always knew what they are talking about)/ they are relentless in pursuing what they know to be true and right/ they force change/ they are fearless, and will take on all comers, no matter the numbers, or the positions they hold/ therefore, they are often considered to be a real pain the ass, because they step on toes, kick butt, and they will not allow the establishment types to ignore them or their causes.  Unfortunately, True Believers seldom, if ever, live to see their accomplishments recognized and accepted.  They have to disappear from the scene and/or, sometimes from this earth, before their wisdom and dedication produce the results they seek.

Does the name Jesus Christ come to mind.  He personally, on the surface, didn’t actually look like He had accomplish what He came to do….but once he departed, it all came together, didn’t it?   Maryanne is probably talking about that with Jesus Christ right now. Somehow I think she didn’t have to take an entrance examination to crash those pearly gates….her spot has been reserved  for her for a long time. It was a free pass and a front row seat for MaryAnne McGonegal, I think.   I never met a more dedicated individual in the 71 years I’ve been around.  By the way, Maryanne, put in a good word for me.  I won’t be far behind…and I”m not sure whether my elevator will be up or down—see what you can do for me, will ya.

Believe me, for years to come, when her issues are finally accepted and accomplished, people will be saying….”Yeah, I remember how Maryanne McGonigal had to fight like hell for that issue, or for this issue, or for those issues…..open government, Sunday busing, environment, integrity for public officials, etc., etc., etc. etc. etc.. 

It’s no accident that the two people closest to her throughout her life on this earth were John Flaherty and Senator Karen Peterson…..people, like herself,  who are well established and well recognized, and well respected for all the same things that Maryanne McGonegal was dedicated to.  Thank Maryanne you for everthing…..and I mean everything.  You’ve dunn real good for yourself and for all of us.

UPDATE ON WDEL–GOOD NEWS/BAD NEWS

April 5, 2008

The GOOD NEWS…Rick Jensen got seriously demoted and lost his job as program director…..The BAD NEW…they allowed him to keep his talk show.  The losers?….the listeners.

Now I know some of you will call this “sour grapes” because “they fired me without just cause”—(direct quote from the hearing officer of the Department of Labor).  But….

I can prove that this disclosure, and joy I feel about their decision to demote Jensen is not based on “sour grapes”—how can I prove it?BECAUSE I REMINDED HIM VIRTUALLY EVERY DAY THAT HE COULDN’T HANDLE BOTH JOBS OF PROGRAM DIRECTOR AND TALK SHOW HOST ADEQUATELY.  It was not news….I made that judgment from first hand experience while I was working there….it took the bosses longer to arrive at a conslusion that I had reached 2 years earlier.

In fact, if the the truth be known, he really couldn’t handle EITHER job adequately…..and I reminded him of that also, as regularly as was necessary.  But don’t believe me….here are some interesting facts to prove my contention: 

1. In a conversation with the station big shot, Pete Booker, I made the following statement:  “Pete do you have any idea of the listeners’ negative reactions to Jensen as talk show host”….Booker’s response: to me,  “We know Rick isn’t good at what he does, but he likes to do it, so we let him do it”.   How’s that for a reason to give a inept person a talk show? …because he likes to do it”.  Isn’t that like saying, “Who gives a crap about what’s best for the listeners…”Jensen likes to do it”

2. The fact that they demoted him and took the Program Director’s job away from him recently, certainly support my contention of his lack of ability.  It just took the bosses longer to discover that I concluded two years earlier.

3.  \Since I left in September, the radio ratings of the Rick Jensen Show ve been at their lowest in the history of  the show….and oh, yes….need I remind you, or  have you aready guessed….”the that show had the highest ratings in the history of the show, when it was the Rick and Ger show….fact!

Draw your own conclusions…………

 

OK, OK..I’M SORRY…COMPUTER DOWN; BUT, I’M BACK

April 2, 2008

What’s been happening? Obviously nothing. Too many political guys and gals are allowed to go unchallenged as they seek to be re-elected. I can’t beleive that there is no one around to challenge this Mayor…Why? What’s up with these people? Are you trying to tell me that no democrat can beat this Mayor? Are you kidding, or what? One of my homeless peeps from Rodney Square could serve as well as this Mayor. I can’t believe how many people are willing to define success as being able to stay afloat in a pool of medioctiry.

Hopefully some Republicans will rise to new occasions, since Tom Ross takes over as Republican Party leader. Terry “all I can do is raise money” Strine is giving it up. Hopefully, Tom Ross will generate interest, enthusiasm and integrity, which that party needs so badly. Come on, Gutless Wonders, start thinking change, openess….integrity….actual service, and improvment; and not just higher buildings near the riiver…that’s not improvement..that’s just showbiz glitter. Start improving the quality of life, not the quantity of dollars and special favors for, and from developers.

Regarding the State legislature….there IS a way this year to actually make great strides in getting rid of Adams/ McDowell/
Blevins/ Marshall/ Cook/ Venables/ DeLuca/ Henry/….and the rest of some of those developmentally delayed slugs. Here’s how you do it.

Those same people mentioned above are still goiing to win
re-election…but, you can diminish their power by electing an outside the box Governor—Jack Markel. As you all know, the “System” calls for Carney to win. It’s that thing called the “System”….it’s that thing called “IT’S YOUR TURN” so you get to be Governor. That system sucks…and we all know it.
The democratic Legislators love the system so much that all but 5 democratic Legislative politicians have thrown in with John “yes, it’s my turn” Carney.

We the people spend all out time outraged at the “System” but we never do anything to change it…well you can NOW. We are pretty much agreed that the worst legislators in the “System” are those mentioned above….they are going to be in office again; BUT WE CAN REDUCE THEIR POWER TO SCREW US, BY GIVING THEM A GOVERNOR WHO IS NOT “ONE OF THEM”; NOT OWNED BY THEM….JACK MARKEL.

This means that The big ass committee…oopps…I mean The Big Head Committee would not be running the show.
Jack Markel will make sure that the “party faithful” who did not back him, will not get to run things, as they do now. The Adams and McDowell gang literally dominate the governors whom they put in office….BUT SINCE THEY WON’T PUT MARKEL IN OFFICE…HE WON’T OWE THEM SQUAT.

Remember, the vast majority of legislators love the present systeM, which most of us clear-thinkers hate. That’s why all those legislative Carney lovers will keep the system, which they thrive on.

Pete Schwartzkopf and four other legislators stepped out of the system box…and stood up for a changer and a reformer…
JACK MARKEL.

Carney is probably a nice guy, but he does not support open government. He is against the Inspector General position, in favor of eminent domain, and against so many other things that would change the “system” from what it is, to what it should be.
JACK MARKEL SEEMS TO BE THE RIGHT GUY TO DO THE RIGHT THING. Let’s make it “OUR TURN”. You can make it “his turn” with your vote….think about it.