Saturday, June 9, 2012

Pete's Story a Canary in the Coal Mine for the MSM

   Earlier today I "broke" the Pete's story...It's not a journalistic coup since I am there every day....But how the rest of the MSM deals with it will perhaps show why they struggle...
    This is something of interest to the demographic that reads papers and watches TV newscasts....They have read about the sale on the Internet and will wonder if its not in the MSM....In their head, they will say "why wait to find out things of interest in the community?"   The MSM will say, "that's not news, we're the gatekeepers.."
    UPDATE- In less than a day, the Pete's story has become the third most viewed in the history of this blog, with the help of a link from Newzjunky.

Ahead of Her Time ?

   Back in 2010, alternative candidate for Governor Kristin Davis was spurned for a platform that advocated gay marriage, legalized pot and more casinos.
    Now the guy who won the race has passed gay marriage, wants to decriminalize pot and is leading the charge for more casinos.

Kristin in 2010 With Post Political Czar Fred Dicker

    Kristin saw the irony this week in a tweet.
I ran for Governor on a platform of marijuana, gambling and gay marriage. Andrew Cuomo is now 3 for 3!!
    Yesterday's fringe is today's mainstream.

Eek! Subway rat attacks woman on A train near Columbus Circle

   They are not pit bulls, but a subway rat has caused a stir by cornering a rider and gnawing at her leg......

Subway Victim Ana Vargas

    And to think all the Mayor cares about is soda....

Eek! Subway rat attacks woman on A train near Columbus Circle -

WDT: Cat Thought to Still Be in Burned Building

   It would be nice if this lady could get her cat back after being victimized by the criminal who torched her home last month.
Watertown Daily Times | Cat with nine lives still living in burned High Street building?

HSBC Flight Leaving Some Customers Wondering What Happened

   For decades HSBC and before that Marine Midland was a big player in NNY banking.....Whomever the bank president was, they were a big deal...Now that HSBC is pulling out of upstate, many of the familiar faces have bailed out to other jobs and those left are patiently answering the queries of customers caught in a confusing dance of different banks acquiring different branches and some not knowing where their money is.
   First Niagara took branches in Evans Mills and Carthage while Community later this summer will take the other local offices.

Sorry Sir, You'll Have to Go to Evans Mills...Just Take Route 11....
   All the credit cards went to Niagara.  I still do some of my business at HSBC, but every day there is somebody in line trying to understand why they live in Watertown and have to go to Evans Mills to do banking.
    People fret over direct deposits and granted many of them are older customers not anxious for change.
     One fellow called me the other day as he was getting a new job and didn't know where to have the direct deposit routed. This morning I watched tellers patiently helping a senior whose direct deposit wasn't where it was suppose to be, as some payers assumed all customers went to Niagara, while in NNY only a few do.
     To their credit, the remaining staff is patiently trying to help people, and most transitions surely went well.  However HSBC's retreat to more profitable big market banking did leave many long time customers scratching their heads and worried.
     There's more confusion next month when the other branches are taken over by Community. There are a lot fewer people in these banks in recent months, surely because many decided to switch to the known rather than deal with the unknown.
First Niagara: HSBC acquisition had some bumps, but things are smoothing out |

BREAKING NEWS: Pete's To Change Hands...Local Chef to Take Helm in September

    After 42 years in the restaurant business, Pete's owner Tom Costanzo tells me he is handing the Breen Avenue eaterie over to local chef Geoff Puccia come September.
     Pete's is a staple for the political chattering class and a popular Italian restaurant dating back to 1932 when Tommy's dad, Pete, opened on Factory Street at the close of Prohibition. Monday pasta night is a local tradition.
     Mr. Puccia is a well known foodmeister and is currently running the kitchen at the nearby Italian American Club. He previously was chef at Ives Hill Country Club.
     Tom tells me all the details and paperwork are still to be signed but the agreement is a lease with option to buy.

  Yours Truly at Pete's With City Judge Palermo & Her Husband
      The customers and staff were aflutter upon learning of the news. One Council member said Mr. Puccia will bring a greater range of salad dressings. Others were worried their favorite seats will be lost as new customers and followers of Mr. Puccia flock to Pete's
      I think it's a great move, as Mr. Puccia is a quality guy and will build on a long tradition.
      The remaining question....will Ralphie Marzano still occupy the end seat at the bar ?

Doheny Sees Lines B, C and E as Key to Win

    Congressional hopeful Matt Doheny sees the union of three ballot lines (Republican, Conservative and Independence)  as the main reason he will reverse his narrow 2010 defeat to Rep. Bill Owens. Mr. Doheny also points to a GOP registration advantage in the newly drawn 21st CD.
    Mr. Doheny made his remarks last night to supporters. He also cited a "minor hurdle" he faces on June 26 with a GOP primary against Kellie Greene. He urged the faithful to make sure they vote that day. This is the first time in decades a primary has even been held so early.
     Last night's gathering at the Partridge Berry was attended by about 50 to 75 supporters, and was hosted by local Tea Party activists, Chuck and Lisa Ruggiero.
     Assemblyman Ken Blankenbush was there, as were a couple of county legislators.
     Next door in the bar, I ran into a rehearsal dinner party for Mike Perkins from FX Caprara.  Billy was there and several other friends. That's where I picked up the tid bits about Pete's.
Doheny hopes for second shot at Republican primary - YNN, Your News Now

How Many Mariners Does It Take to Pitch a No-Hitter ?

   Call it a team effort as it took six Seattle Mariner pitchers to combine for a no-hitter against the Dodgers after the team's starter left the game after six innings with a groin injury.  Who get's the hug at the end of the game ?
Los Angeles Dodgers vs. Seattle Mariners - Recap - June 08, 2012 - ESPN

Highway Naming Proposed for Fort Drum Connector

       The Interstate spur connecting I-81 and Fort Drum is nearing completion and already there is a move afoot to name I-781 after someone. 
        In this case, it's a well liked and respected retired general named Paul Cerjan, who died recently and was a part of the original planning of the new Fort Drum in the 1980s. Legislation has been introduced in Albany to do just that.
        If one is interested in naming infrastructure, there is always the late Rep. Bob McEwen, who was a tireless lobbyist for expansion on Drum before the 10th Mountain Division was thought of.
       Or there is always something more generic like Pine Camp Expressway in honor of what the sprawling post used to be called.
       Or there is the option of just leaving it as I-781, one of many spurs connecting this and that around America's cities. Most people will just call it the Fort Drum connector.
        It's always difficult and emotional to consider naming a public project and sometimes the passing of time lends a more dispassionate view.

Arena Contract and Field Trip to Highlihght Monday Meeting

       City Council on Monday will have a short business meeting prior to their work session. The main topic is expected to be the contract allowing the Privateers Hockey Team to play their 2012-2013 season at the Fairgrounds Arena.
        A draft agreement was circulated late this past week, but getting everyone together for a final draft will likely not happen til Monday.
        Lawmakers will also visit the Donegan developments adjacent to Stateway Plaza to look at this rapidly growing commericial sector. Concerns over access and the unifinished Western Boulevard are the subject of the talks.

Opportunity Lost for Horse Racing Afficionados

       The prospect of seeing a Triple Crown winner is a great draw and surely would have brough viewers to the Peacock Netowrk this afternoon....It's not to be as 'I'll Have Another' was scratched and won't be able to make history by winning the Derby, Preakness and Belmont Stakes.

      But, there is Hockey tonight, and that should bring NBC some viewers as the Kings try to finish off the Devils in game 5 of the Stanley Cup finals.

Friday, June 8, 2012

A Debate in Wanakena ?

      When the subject of a Doheny-Greene debate came up last week, I joked to myself that they would try to schedule it for Wanakena to keep it from being covered...
      Sure enough, the Ranger School invited both candidates (with no prompting from Team Doheny, they say) to participate in the world's most obscure debate...far from even the lazy NNY media.
      Come on guys, let's make it look at least a little legit....Can't those overpriced colleges in St. Lawrence County sponsor something John Friot can find his way to ?

Culinary News Trumps Politics at Partridge Berry Soire

   Once again, I have to play reporter....and rightly so since TV 7 featured me as the Blast from the Past on the Evening News.
    Tonight I was at the Matt Doheny fundraiser at the Partridge Berry....A lovely crowd and while Matt said all sorts of neat stuff, I heard some major restaurant news that eclipses politics...In my new spirit of protecting national security, I will sit on the story.
     As for the fundraiser, Mr Doheny was upbeat and claimed he will beat both primary challenger Kellie Greene and Democrat Bill Owens.
     Among the glitterati at the soire was radio station owner Jim Leven and local attorney Lee Hector.

Eagles Plan To Move Nest

   Location, location, location....The local Eagles Club had a spot smack dab in the middle of a new medical development on Outer Washington Street....Therefore, they were able to trade their shopworn building for a brand new building in the City.
   We welcome the Eagles to their new nest on State Street.
Eagles Plan To Move Nest | WWNY TV 7 - News, Weather and Sports for | Local News

Bath Salts A Growing Problem

       While officials stage elaborate stings in convenience stores to bag that 60 year old clerk who lets a young adult buy an 18 pack, the pleasure seeking public....especially those too young to seeking gratification in new and disturbing ways.
      So called bath salts are the latest concoction to get you high and its catching on.
       When I was young, bath salts were for baths.
Bath Salts A Growing Problem, Experts Say | WWNY TV 7 - News, Weather and Sports for | Local News

Last Week a Nude...This Week a Menace....And They Are Room Mates !

   A 22 year old man whose room mate was arrested last week for walking naked on Gaffney Drive doubled down on his buddy by racing into the Olive Garden parking lot and smashing five cars.
      It was earlier reported the two men were one in the same. We regret the error, but the connection is still interesting.
    The idiot was said by police to be high on the new "synthetic" pot known as "spice".  The room mate....Robert Palmer....was a passenger in the vehicle when it crashed. Police Blotter

WDT: No More Casinos

       It would seem there is a saturation point with casinos, and the marketplace will determine that....Eventually it just won't make sense to build it in hopes they will come...
       It the meantime, states and regions will continue to cut deals on the basis it creates jobs and reduces budget shortfalls.
       The Times opines that gambling targets lower incomes....Well, much of it does and that is the point....It's not politically correct to tax the income of the lower classes, but their money is needed....
      Its easier to stigmatize them as sinners and sell 'em Lottery tickets and overpriced cigarettes.  Who could argue with charging sinners for their personal shortcomings ?
Watertown Daily Times | No to casino

New Book Claims Hillary Still in Hunt for White House If She Can Get Tanned, Toned and Rested

      Secretary of State Hillary Clinton can say she is looking forward to retirement, but speculation continues she will run for President in 2016, perhaps against one term incumbent Mitt Romney.
                                    Secretary Clinton in Istanbul This Week
      While Secretary Clinton gets high marks for her globe trotting on behalf of President Obama, there is the question of whether she has been on the stage too long and missed her best chance in 2008 when she lost the nomination to a freshman Senator. Mrs Clinton also will have to deal with the obsession with youth and being thin, particularly for women in politics.
Knives out for 'overweight' former First Lady Hillary Clinton as she mulls running for the White House | Mail Online


    Nine women, six of them from Oswego County, were honored this week as Women of Distinction. The awards come from Senator Patty Ritchie. Fulton resident and cancer survivor Jan Rebeor was named for top honors in the group.
     Women are doing well these days. In fact, the Senator is being opposed by a woman in her bid for reelection this year. 

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Jerry Seinfeld Not in Favor of Soda Ban, Prefers ‘Early Death’ -- Grub Street New York

   Comedian Jerry Seinfeld doesn't buy into Mayor Bloomberg's proposed ban on sugary sodas.....
    Jerry, whom I met at the Golden Lion in Watertown back in the 70s, says he enjoyed full sugar Coke as a child along with Orange Crush and Dr. Pepper....I drank a lot of Crush too....Remember Nehi Soda ?
     Jerry says sugary soda will contribute to early death and will thin the population, something he says he favors.
Jerry Seinfeld Not in Favor of Soda Ban, Prefers ‘Early Death’ -- Grub Street New York

WDT: Let the Fundraising Begin

   The fundraisers are starting in earnest...Let's see there is one for Doheny tomorrow night at the Partridge Berry....and a high dollar, big medical one on the 14th for Rep. Bill Owens at the Wellesley Island home of ambulance magnate Marty Yenawine. (Betcha Mance is at this one, as he is tight with all the hospital crowd from his days running SMC)
     Big medical has a lot at stake in all the debate of health care and they likely want to stay in tight with all sides. 
     A lot of the health care big wigs will probably keep a foot in both camps.
     As a rule I, people living on Pearl Street do not attend fundraisers held on islands. If they are held at Pete's, deal me in.
Watertown Daily Times | Owens fundraiser set on Wellesley Island

People You Don't Know at Your Door Again

   Time for petitions part II.   Due to a spate of lunacy by Albany political operatives have to hit the streets twice this year. Once for the federal office primary held June 26 and again right now for the state and local office primaries in September.
   Glad I gave that up for Lent and never reacquired the habit.

Another Manager Search

   Another upstate city is looking for a city manager. Oneonta has just gone to that form of government and is paying a consultant $15K plus expenses to help find one....That's even though the city has a personnel director. Ogdensburg is also doing a $15K search.
    Oneonta will find reinventing the wheel will likely yield many of the same applicants as Watertown had.
     The Watertown search, managed by John Krol, cost $10K. We would have told them who the better prospects are for much less....

Does NY Need to Find the Way to San Jose ?

    With libraries built and unopened and police officers laid off, voters in two California cities voted overwhelmingly to cut pension benefits for municipal employees.
     In San Diego, a defined contribution plan will be the order of the day and in San Jose, current retiree benefits will  be cut, but not without a court fight.
     It's not a party issue either. San Jose has a Democratic mayor who realizes when pension costs approach 30% of the city's operating budget something has to give.
     New York's pension reform bill passed this year takes a stab at containing costs but the unions blocked Governor Cuomo's plan for a 401k style plan across the entire workforce.
San Diego and San Jose Pass Pension Cuts -

NY Post: Rope Sales Surge as Ladies Read "Fifty Shades of Grey"

   Time to send John Moore over to Stratton's Hardware to see if the locals are buying rope. 
    The NY Post reports sale of soft rope is up as women read the summer pot boiler "Fifty Shades of Grey" with its suggestions about experimentation with bondage  (that means being tied up as an act of sexual submission, but John would be better explaining that.)
     Maybe that West Marine store on outer Arsenal would be a better place to shop for the ladies....Looks like the place you'd be buying a Father's Day gift and could just pick up some rope (they call it 'line').
      Of course, this may be one of those stories best left to big city media.

Sales of sex accessories and kinky rope skyrockets among NYC women who read “Fifty Shades of Grey” -

WDT: Sackets Worries About the Drunks

      Wow, I didn't think sleepy Sackets Harbor was having an issue with public intoxication.  Letters have been sent to the local gin mills, including the Legion and ritzy eateries like Tin Pan Galley, warning of the evils of too much of the 'devil's brew.'
        Any time I have been there, it's been a pretty staid environment.
Watertown Daily Times | Sackets Harbor issues letter to village bars and restaurants about public intoxication

WDT: Carthage Voters Say No...Make it Hell NO ! Borrowing Package

   In Carthage, school officials say the public could just give up a meal out here and there and that a proposed $34.5 million capital project was a good deal since 94% of it is paid for by the State of New York.
    Voters though otherwise and quashed the borrowing plan by a nearly four to one vote.
     People are catching on and are worried about things like debt. They follow the national debate and what's happening in Greece and extrapolate that to the local level, even though not all the circumstances are the same.
     Carthage residents also are not making school administrator salaries.
      However, the District and local media can team up to educate the great unwashed and the project will move ahead somehow.

Watertown Daily Times | Carthage CSD capital project voted down

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Mom cited for strapping gas can in baby’s car seat, leaving toddler unprotected - NY Daily News

    Anyone who has had to fill a gas can and get it home can appreciate the precautions this mom took.....Maybe should have left the child at home.

                  The Fire Chief would have approved....but the cops didn't care for it...

Mom cited for strapping gas can in baby’s car seat, leaving toddler unprotected - NY Daily News

A Drive Offers Time to Ponder My Questions

    I had to make a shopping trip today so I had time in the car to ponder just what questions I will ask the two GOP Congressional candidates when they are on the HOTLINE this month.
     I feel an obligation to be probing and a little prickly as there are no MSM long form interviews on TV or radio during the campaign.
     Now, I don't want to play "gotcha" or be insulting, but I am a believer that Congress is high office and a candidate cannot expect a free pass you would give a novice candidate for town council.
      These folks need to have their views challenged and the measure of their quality is how they deal with tough questions.
      Surely their handlers can anticipate the obvious and will have appropriate canned answers.
       But for the record, I agree to no "ground rules" and do not submit questions to anyone.
       Back in my younger days as a reporter, some pols thought I was kind of a dick. Maybe I should try to relive my youth. 
      By the way, when did you stop beating your puppy ?

Off to Rodman...Political Artifacts Given a New Home

Had a great sign purging from my garage last week, tossing out signs for Council races, Sheriffs, state races and a bunch from my race last year.  It's nice to be able to pull the car in the garage easily. I did keep a jumbo Doheny sign for this year and a couple Davis signs as souvenirs.

Media Vacancies

      Local media has a couple of openings. One is the reporter slot at YNN's Watertown bureau. The departure of Amanda Kelley has not been filled although Time Warner is said to be looking for someone willing to share the bureau with Brian Dwyer.
      Last night was also the last day for Newzjunky scribe Tim Scee who is headed for life in an undisclosed location working for Senator Patty Ritchie.
      Scee had provided traditional media with the kind of direct competition needed to stay sharp and his presence will be missed. Hopefully the ranks of the media will be filled soon.
      Will there ever be a return of Kevin Schenk ?

Wizards Introduce Players, Sponsors at Elks Lodge

   The Watertown Wizards collegiate baseball team kicks off their season tonight at the Fairgrounds, providing entertainment for fans and an anchor for summer activities at the facility.
    The team was introduced at a reception last night at the Elks Club. Sponsors and host families were there was yours truly and Parks Superintendent Erin Gardner, representing the City.
     Good luck to the team and may they enjoy their summer in the North Country
Wizards Introduce Players, Sponsors at Elks Lodge

WDT: Movers, Shakers Tour Masonic Temple

       The vacant Masonic Temple got a look-see from some business and community leaders yesterday, but here are still many questions about one man's hope to renovate the crumbling but imposing structure wedged between the WDT and the Historical Society.
      With several other high profile older buildings in the queue for attention, the Temple is a heavy lift, but those with a desire to do something now will have to demonstrate viability (aka money) to move the project along.
Watertown Daily Times | Community, business leaders tour vacant Masonic Temple

Wisconsin recall: Scott Walker wins

     Republican Governor Scott Walker won the recall race, keeping him in office with a percentage higher than the one he got when elected in 2010. Nonetheless Wisconsin voters remain bitterly divided after the past two years and the GOP wins in the Badger State are open to all sorts of interpretation.
    It appears to affirm the notion that even in a left leaning state, enough is enough for many voters when it comes to the public employee unions.
    While the left and its mouthpiece at NBC say the election is the result of GOP money, there is no disputing voters were engaged and Big Labor was unable to oust the Governor, his Lieutenant Governor and a handful of Senators.
     Not a good night for the takers...but good news for the makers.
Wisconsin recall: Scott Walker wins - Alexander Burns -

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Rev. Jeff Smith Lauds Council

    I considered a win by getting the word "kerfuffle" in a Channel 7 newscast.
Church Leader: City Made Right Decison | WWNY TV 7 - News, Weather and Sports for | Local News

Senior Village Renaming

   Having grown up in the era of Funky Town.....Let's call it Senior Town.
Senior Village Renaming

Fireman John Certainly Put Out a Fire

    Late last January when a divided City Council voted to change city managers, there was a bit of an open wound on the third floor. Bad press, recriminations and suddenly a need to embark on a recruitment effort nobody was looking forward to.
    To the north, Ogdensburg had been grabbing headlines with its protracted demise of City Manager Art Sciorra, but suddenly Watertown was doing the same, albeit under different circumstances.
     With weeks till vacancy, there had to be a pulling together. Some one or some how to rally forces divided. My choice was John Krol to head a recruitment effort and this week we paid Mr. Krol the final installment of his contract with the inking of a contract with manager in waiting Sharon Addison.
      Krol was above reproach and well connected to the profession of municipal administration.  When hired February 14th, he quickly talked to council members, crafted a job description and hit the street. An April 20 submission deadline yielded 37 applicants and by May 21, Council informed Ms. Addison she was there choice. A public announcement came four days later after a contract was negotiated.
      To their credit, Council members knew they had to make it work once we got started and their was no acrimony or nonsense along the way. Mr. Krol analyzed the submissions, prepared matrixes, and helped as Council winnowed the field...First to 17, then to seven who did phone interviews.
      After background checking, four were chosen for personal interviews on May 18-19 and out of that one was chosen.
      Last night, I sent a note to the comptroller to pay the remainder of Krol's contract as the terms have been met.
     Meanwhile, to the north, the Maple City has just hired a recruiter at 50% more money and surely some of our applicants might be appropriately considered by the 'burg.
      In any event, there were skeptics who felt the process and Council could not be pulled together so quickly.
       Thanks to Mr. Krol for answering the call. This was the first time he had done such an effort and gets an A+.  Ironically, I had called him way back in 1995 when a manager searched here had faltered and he put me in touch with some people who were very helpful.
       I promise I won't call again.

Andy: OK To Show It...Just Don't Light It Huh ?

      Governor Cuomo has joined the dance about what to do with a nearly century old taboo.  The Governor wants to amend the law to decriminalize possession of small amounts of marijuana, but if you smoke it, it's still a crime.
      Well, why else would you possess it ?
       The change is a sop to minority lawmakers concerned that "stop and frisk" police tactics have targeted their community.
        The war on drugs is hard to figure out some times, as the rules of engagement change.
Cuomo goes public on pot - Times Union

Monday, June 4, 2012

Hockey a Go As Council Approves Tentative Agreement

     City Council informally agreed to host the Privateers hockey team at the Fairgrounds Arena this winter and will formally approve a franchise agreement for the team next week.
     Lawmakers questioned team owner Nicole Kirnan and Parks Superintendent Erin Gardner about the logistics of fitting a pro team into the schedule of existing activities at the facility.
      In the end, there was agreement it was worth a try and I think if successful the team could be a plus for the City but also spur additional use and investment in the Arena.
      Let's get behind the effort.
                                        NO MORE GREEN CLOCKS  
       Council also concurred with a legal opinion that the current contract for maintenance of the Town Clock doesn't allow colored faces for different holidays.
    A kerfuffle had erupted over the issue and Council wisely decided to depart that briar patch.
     Lawmakers also decided to sell a Mohawk Street parcel, once home to Rose Ward, at auction this summer. Other resolutions were approved including one for a new rest room for Marble Street Park.

Kellie Greene Amps Up The Charm in Run Up to Primary

    After weeks of flying beneath the radar and cultivating an aloofness with media, GOP Congressional candidate Kellie Greene has launched a charm offensive by challenging her opponent to debate and agreeing to be interviewed on America's Favorite Noontime Talk Show.
    Ms. Greene called the HOTLINE today to announce her acceptance of my invitation to appear. She will be on June 21, a day after presumed Republican frontrunner Matt Doheny appears.  Both candidates compete in a June 26 primary for the right to oppose Rep. Bill Owens.
     Ms. Greene was ebullient in her call, even suggesting her previous avoiding of the show was merely her desire to "keep a man waiting."
     Since I am particularly susceptible to even the most insincere flattery, I was taken back by her sudden kindness.
      We look forward to both interviews which will be the area's most definitive long form discourse with the candidates.
Kellie Greene challenges Matt Doheny to debate in NY-21

WDT:Greene, Doheny to debate

       The Doheny campaign quickly accepted the debate challenge. Obviously a tactical decision already reached.
        Usually front runners do the rope-a-dope with unknown and underfunded challengers.  Oh, my schedule is pretty full....or can we make that debate happen in Wanakena on a Friday night ?
        If Greene wins the primary, Doheny is still on the ballot on the Indy and Conservative lines. While he wouldn't compete, it would be tough for Ms. Greene to prevail on just the B line.
       If Doheny wins, he would certainly like Greene uniting the right flank, so look for him to play nice in the debate.   He could really reach out and invite her to his June 30th wedding.

Watertown Daily Times | Greene, Doheny to debate

Forty Pound Tabby Discovered in NY !

    Mayor Bloomberg may be on to something....This obesity thing is creeping into the Animal Kingdom as well.
     A forty pound cat has showed up at a suburban shelter, abandoned by its deceased owner.

Garfield the cat weights 40lbs | Mail Online

Monied Class Continues to Fret Over Their Shoreline

   I know some people spend a lot of time debating water levels on the St. Lawrence and Great Lakes as if government agencies are the new God and control the natural order of things.
     It seems the media attention is directly proportional to media ownership of waterfront property.
     Quit carping about water levels and be thankful you have waterfront property. Most people don't.
      People without summer homes think the International Joint Commission is one toke over the line.
Water levels plan for Lake Ontario, St. Lawrence River sparks debate | Democrat and Chronicle |

New Duty-Free Limit Takes Effect for Canadian Shoppers

   The duty free limit has gone up, but I think the motivator for Canadians shopping in the US is not what they can take back across the border tax free. It's the exchange rate and the notion that the grass is greener on the other side of the fence.
   Viva the weak US dollar.
New Duty-Free Limit Takes Effect for Canadian Shoppers | WWNY TV 7 - News, Weather and Sports for | Local News

NPR Reporter Does Interview and Purchases Shirt

    After I was interviewed for this NPR piece on the new city manager, the reporter purchased a Fort Pearl t-shirt, becoming the second member of the local news media to make this shrewd and stylish fashion buy.
     The "Mayor's Bar" shirts are still popular and are available in a range of colors and sizes.
     The reporter declined the opportunity to have a photo of her wearing the shot posted on this blog. Guess that would have crossed a line.
     NCPR News - Watertown welcomes new city manager

Green Candidate Lacking Green

        Green Party Congressional candidate Donald Hassig  has no income and lives off modest savings. For him the $174,000 Congressional salary is untold wealth.
        Either of the two men likely to represent the 21st District come January is already well off and is probably fond of telling us they don't need the money and are in the race for other reasons.
       Matt Doheny is the most wealthy and Rep. Bill Owens is about what you would expect in wealth from a law career at Plattsburgh's most prestigious law firm.

Will Voters Trust a Candidate Who Isn't Rich ?
       Kellie Green hasn't made her disclosure public as her treasurer is on vacation.
       Representing the district properly is hard work, so I have no problem with a candidate who says he or she will work hard to earn the pay. Money is and should be a motivator.
      Candidates who say they don't need the money or aren't in it for the money are forgetting why all of us get out of bed in the morning and go to work or run our business.
Congressional candidates disclose income : - Glens Falls, Saratoga, Lake George NY area news

Sunday, June 3, 2012

War in the White House: attorney general Eric Holder and top Obama adviser David Axelrod 'had to be separated' - Telegraph

   Fly on the wall moment in the Obama Whitehouse.
   AG Holder and political operative Axelrod nearly come to blows and Valerie Jarrett separates them....
War in the White House: attorney general Eric Holder and top Obama adviser David Axelrod 'had to be separated' - Telegraph

'Family Feud' host Richard Dawson dead at 79

   One of the icons of our generation who is said to have kissed 20,000 women has died. Family Feud host Richard Dawson died of cancer. The wisecracking British entertainer said kissing women was good luck...for him or them I don't know.
    Wilt Chamberlain also claimed a figure of 20,000, but that was a little more intimate.
'Family Feud' host Richard Dawson dead at 79 -

Newzjunky Scribe to Work for Senator Ritchie

   A third media luminary has been hired by Senator Patty Ritchie, meaning the freshman lawmaker could open her own newsroom.
   Newzjunky's Tim Scee will start at the Senator's Watertown office on Wednesday according to a source. He will be handling constituent issues.
   Mr. Scee was the front line reporter for Newzjunky, covering local government and doing feature stories. His work augmented Newzjunky's core product of linked stories, press releases and official documents.
    Channel 7's Sarah Compo recently went to work for Senator Ritchie and former Ogdensburg Journal Editor Jim Reagen also works there.
     The lure of the womb of public employment is strong for those in local media.
Tim Scee did a good job of reporting and made the market more competitive.

WDT: Council Will Consider Hockey Deal

      A four-fifths vote will be needed to approve a franchise agreement with the Privateers hockey team for use of the Fairgrounds Arena as their home for the 2012-13 season.
     The outline of a deal negotiated by City Manager John Krol and team owner Nicole Kirnan was circulated to Council members over the weekend for their review. If acceptable, it will be drawn up in contract form for a formal vote.
      In essence, the team will pay prevailing rates for ice team and have the franchise for beer and banners. The City retains all rights to sell food, which should allow for continued improvements to the city owned concession stand that has been doing well with the calendar of events now being held.
      Sharing use of the limited locker rooms was an issue that has been worked out with little capital cost.
       While the team has its critics dating to its time in Alexandria Bay, there is also a desire to have pro hockey as a spectator event locally. While there are risks and challenges, I think trying it for a season to see how it goes is within our means and in the public interest.

Watertown Daily Times | City Council to discuss contract for Privateers’ move

Thruway Toll Hikes Rapped....But Do We Need a Toll Road When All Others Are Free ?

   Why do we still have a Thruway Authority or tolls on the highway which is now only one of many superhighways in the State ?
    A proposed toll hike gets protests from lawmakers who years ago created political cover by setting up the non-elected Authority to run the highway.

     The Thruway Authority has long been a place to get people state jobs, including all the toll collectors sitting in booths round the clock.
      Get rid of this agency and the tolls. You can drive from Watertown to Binghamton on a four lane, well maintained superhighway for free, but the same trip from Rochester to Albany costs.
      Of course, the electeds would have to cover the costs through taxes and wouldn't have a straw man agency to blame. Who wants to see that happen ?


Sex Selection Aborting Raised as Issue in NNY Race

      Republicans and their media friends at FOX are carrying on about the practice of aborting children based on what sex baby the mother wants to have. In a ginned up vote on a law to ban the practice, lawmakers were forced to say yes or no on a bill that would never become law, but would force Democrats into casting a vote that makes them look like they support this "barbaric practice."
        All of this comes after an anti abortion group taped interviews with Planned Parenthood counselors in which patients were told the reason for their abortion was their own.
       The bill was designed to create a wedge issue, something common is DC. The Party of Lincoln should be talking about deficits, taxes and anti business regulations, not abortion and the sanctity of what they view as marriage.
        As for UNYTEA ? Sounds like they are press release wing when statements are needed but candidates don't want direct involvement.
UNYTEA attacks Owens on vote on abortion issue » Local News » Press-Republican

Brittnee Rebounds

              Yesterday, Brittnee posted she had been fired. Last night she was musing on Facebook she wanted the pain to end...And tonight I noticed she was posing with a trannie at a local nightclub. The big smile on her face was a sign the angst of Friday gave way to a back to normal Saturday.
               Life is a roller coaster for some...I didn't post the picture of the trannie as a concession to community sensitivities. Some people just don't want to see such things on a Sunday morning.
               For the more unrestrained and ebullient among us, social media is a bizarre rendition of life in real time, sometimes with more detail than needed and certainly more than we had a generation ago.