Rep Steve Vaillancourt



Saturday
Jun092012

Filing And Failing To Serve Is Fraud!

Considering the long history of absenteeism from Manchester Representatives, a practice which in effect disenfranchises voters, one would have thought that the Union Leader, as part of its Friday editorial urging citizens to seek public office during this filing period, would have stressed that if you file, you really ought to plan to serve if elected.

That should go without saying, but in recent years, people have been coerced into filing by their party simply to fill spots on the ballot or have filed simply to get the glory of being elected but with no real intent to serve.

It's sad, but it's ever so true.  I intend to prove it here.

Don't get me wrong.,  Everyone has lives outside the State House, and no one should be expected to record perfect attendance, perhaps not even 90 percent or not even 80 percent...so let's quantify one's intentions.  You should discover how much effort will be involved in serving and if you, for any reason--even the most noble--caluclate that you cannot be on hand for House sessions and committee hearings at least 75 percent of the time, you should not file to run.  I would consider that a minimal number, but many Reps show up closer to zero than to 75 percent of the time. 

By the way, the 75 percent landmark would disqualify Will Infantine, who as Manchester Ward 6 Reprsentative, served as chairman of the city delegation until the redistricting scandal.  He's been on hand just more than 60 percnet of the time this year, and he was Labor Committee Vice Chair.  Imagine someone in a leadership position not showing up!  Infantine was supposedly considering run for State Senate.  Go figure,  but don't expect to hear of his absentee rate from the Union Leader.  He is after all one of the paper's Golden Boys.  Apparently the paper has no qualms about endorsing those with a No Show history.

You just can't make this stuff up.

Let's keep an eye on what Infantine does this coming week.

However, clearly people are already filing who have a no-show history and most likely will be no shows again if elected.

Caveat voters!

Take the Katsiantonis brothers from Manchester.  In 2007-08, George from the West side had an attendance record in the 20 percent range yet actually got re-elected in 2008, then proceeded to not show up again, and he probably would have been re-elected again in 2010 but for the Republican sweep.

His brother Tom, from my own ward 8, has missed nearly 80 percent of House roll calls this years.  For whatever reason, he's failed to show up for nearly four out of five votes, but he had no problem showing up down at city hall on Thursday to file so he can not show up again!

Disgraceful!

Then there's the case of Jean Jeudy, perhaps shades of Dan Healy.

Perhaps you remember old Dan--well, I guess he wasn't always old, but he sure was when I knew him.  He's the Manchester Rep, a very conservative Democrat and a fine gentleman, whose picture is placed right outside Reps Hall because he served 50 years.  However, maybe you've heard this story...his final term was my first term, 1996-97.  During filing period, he apparently managed to get free from a New Jersey nursing home and somehow found his way down to file at Manchester City Hall (the details will not be revealed here).  Of course he got elected easily, and he only showed up two or three times in the next two years (I actually recall him giving one very short speech on the House floor--nobody understood much of what he said).  He had served honorably and well for decades, but he should not have filed to run that final time.

Earlier this year, the director at the Manchester public TV station asked me if I could come in earlier on Mondays to tape my show.  Sure, I said, but why.  He explained that  Rep. Jean Jeudy had been taping earlier (in French as I recall) but he was extremely ill and could no longer do his show.

Now, I've never really liked Rep. Jeudy, not since the time he sponsored that Tawana Brawley fraudster The Reverend Al Sharpton in a Manchester appearance.  However, as I saw Rep. Jeudy's seat vacant week in and week out at the State House, I actually began to feel sorry for him.  I kept asking whether he is still alive.

Apparently he is because although he hasn't been able to show up in Concord, guess what?

You're way ahead of me.

The same day the House was voting on CACR12 and every vote mattered, Rep. Jeudy was not in Concord, but he was well enough to make it down to City Hall to file for re-election.

There was not a word of this in the Union Leader which in the past has had to call Reps to task for their no-show proclivities.  Disbarred lawyer Michael Farley, for example, won from my ward and he actually ran again in 2010, only to lose the third spot to fellow no show Katsiantonis.

Also in ward eight, a few terms back, Democrats were afraid that I would get written in on both sides of the ballot so Chairman Raymond Buckley assured (lied to might be a more apt terminology) Maureen Nagle that if she filed and happened to get elected, she wouldn't really have to spend much time serving.  Guess what?   After filing (after all, it's hard to say no to Raybo), she twice tried to get off the ballot.  However, the Secretary of State's office informed her that only death, leaving the ward, or a newly acquired illness would allow her to step aside.  She met none of those qualifications, so her name remained on the ballot; and she was elected.  Of course, she failed to show up most of the time, thus disenfranchising Ward 8 voters, setting the precedent for Farley and Katsiantonis.

Then there's the famous case of Democrat Judy Courchesne in Manchester, Ward 11.  She won, never once showed up in two years (except to get her license plates), ran again (Peter Burling even came down to campaign for her), won again, and never showed up again until her absences were noted in the media--no, not the Union Leader (I believe it was the Lawrence paper)--and she finally resigned in disgrace.

Those all happen to be Democrat disenfranchisers, but it's not limited to one party.

This term in Manchester, Tom Beattie from the West Side has almost never been there.  Word is that he works (or at least was working) for WalMart down in Arkansas.  Once in a great while, I've seen him in the hall; and my first reaction is, "Who is HE?"

Another Republican, Norma Greer Champagne, accomplished the virtually impossilbe in November, 2010.  She won in highly Democratic Ward 5 (Dan Healy's old ward).  Her attendance was spotty at best in 2011 and downright awful this year (she spent the winter in Florida).  She won a seat which Rick Olson, a blogger on this site, would most likely have otherwise won, and he would have served well.

When I saw Rep. Champagne in the hall Wednesday, I thought, "Great!  Republican leadership has coerced her to be here soas to put another vote in the CACR12 column."  I was wrong--she voted against the amendment.  Congratulations Norma, if you have any idea of spending next winter in Florida (or anywhere else warm), do us a favor.  Do not file to run (not that she'd win anyway--don't expect any Republicans to win in Ward 5 come November).

I know Manchester best, so I've covered only Manchester here, but we have about eight percent of the population, so you can imagine there are probably ten or 12 times as many no show stories from other parts of the state.

Attendance has been so bad this session that Speaker O'Brien has been forced a half dozen times or so to lock Reps into the hall, summoning police to force us to stay lest we fall below a two-thirds quorum. 

It's true.  Would I lie?  Of course not.

When I first ran in 1994 (and first won in 1996), I promsed to take however much time was required to get the job done, in other words to be there all the time.  In 16 years, I have in fact missed one session day.  I'll never forget the day; Benson was governor; I was so sick that I literally fell back into my bed as I tried to get out the door.

I kid you not.

Yet we have shameful people like the Katsiantonis brothers who run with no intention of showing up to get the job done.  Apparently the Greek government provides a free trip to Athens once a year for any elected official with a Greek heritage.  No wonder Greece is going bankrupt!

Don't laugh.  It's deadly serious when voters here are disenfranchised.  Thumbs down to the Union Leader (and other media) for not stressing, during this filing period, the need to serve if a candidate is in fact elected.

Friday
Jun082012

RUMOR MILL--O'Brien Wants New Ed Funding Amendment

Not being a Republican insider, I have no way of verifying this rumor, but it's out there that House Speaker Bill O'Brien is planning to bring yet another Constitutional Amendment forward either when the House meets again on veto day or at some other time soon.

I've received an email from a reliable source to this effect.  In fact, my source reveals that the Concord Montior is about ready to run with the story.  That wouldn't be a surprise; the Monitor is great at scoops.

However, I guess I would be slightly surprised if O'B tries such a maneuver.  After all, even if an eleventh hour pass were completed in the House, the Senate would have to go along in order to get anything on the November ballot.

Still...knowing the games the Speaker played with calling for a vote on the right to work override, anything is possible with this egomaniac wielding the gavel.

Another rumor is that O'Brien will forego running for one of the two seats in Mt. Vernon/New Boston, and will file for the floterial which will include those two towns and rather Republican towns of Hollis and Milford.  In fact, it's been said that O'Brien insisted that Hillsborough County be screwed up in redistrciting just to provide him with such an advantage.

Wir werden sehen.

At the very least consdier, this a good chance to see how accurate my rumor mill is.

It turned out to be on the money with former Governor Steve Merrill's rumormongering that Mrs. DJ was pregnant.  I've heard the marriage has already taken place?

Has it?         

Friday
Jun082012

The Week In Polls--June 8--538 Gives Obama 71 Percent Chance Of Winning NH

            Fivethirtyeight.com has become my absolute favorite web site for political developments, especially polling data.  It's a must see on a regular basis (almost daily, in fact).  I've actually registered, under my real name, and post comments there occasionally.  About Wisconsin, I wondered, as a result of Juan Williams comment on Fox News, how many people were voting for Walker but would have voted against him had it been a regular rather than a recall election.  I've seen no polling data on that question.  Have you?

            Now more than ever, political junkies should check out Nate Silver’s analysis on the site because he’s beginning a more in depth look at individual states and national trends this week.

            It will be updated frequently.

            Even as right wing zealots like Sean Hannity appear ready to wet themselves, so giddy over the Wisconsin results are they, 538 has Obama winning 289.5-248.5 electoral votes at the starting gate.  Don’t ask about the metrics that go into this; you either have faith in Silver or you don’t; I do.  In fact, he stresses that this could get closer and notes how several individual state polls tend to favor Obama even as Romney makes progress (albeit still trails by two to three points) in national polls.

            Guru Silver has Obama winning New Hampshire by five points, about half the margin he did four years ago, 52.4-47.6 percent.  The great thing about 538 is that it also gives chances of winning.  Right now, Obama is given a 71 percent chance of winning New Hampshire (29 for Romney).

            These numbers are based on most recent polls, so expect them to change as new polling data arrives.

            Not surprisingly, Silver has Ohio as the closest state.  He has Obama winning 49.3-49.0, but only a 52 percent chance of winning the state.

            Colorado appears to be the next closest with Obama projected to win only 49.8-48.9 (a 55-46 chance).

            Virginia is also close, 50.8-47.9 for Obama (but a 63-38 chance).

            So too is Nevada where Obama leads 50.8-47.9 (66-34 chance of winning it).

            It’s great stuff at 538.  He has Romney rather safely ahead in Florida, Missouri (no surprise to me but apparently it will be to PPP), North Carolina, Arizona, and of course, Indiana.

            He’s got Obama ahead but not all that much in Michigan and Pennsylvania, and—this is a surprise at how close it is—Oregon.

            Even with Republican Scott Walker’s seven point win in the Wisconsin recall, Nate Silver expect Obama to win there 52.7-46.0 (a rather high 82-18 chance of winning, not that Hannity will tell his listeners that).  I would concur with Silver’s contention that if Romney pulls out, Wisconsin, it will be icing on a very well baked cake.  In other words, he’ll have won big in other places; he’ll win going away—not likely to happen.

            The latest nationwide polls also would tend to douse Hannity and Republican enthusiasm this week.  Fox has it tied 43-43.  Gallup has Obama up one, 46-45; Rasmussen has Obama up two, 47-45; and Monmouth/Survey USA has Obama up one, 47-46, not exactly the type of numbers the GOP would like to see in the wake of Wisconsin.

            Fox News also has Obama’s job approval at plus four (49-45) while Rasmussen has it at minus three (48-51) and Gallup at minus one (46-47).

            By the way, as alluded to hear, PPP was left with egg on its face in Wisconsin polling, but it wasn’t the worst polling outfit.  American Research Group has analyzed the polling results.  With Walker winning by seven, Marquette nailed it perfectly.  Angus-Reid (I believe that’s a firm out of Canada), with a six point margin, was second best.   PPP had Democrats doing four points better than the final result, but Lake (although Democratic pollster) actually had a 49-49 tie.

            The moral once again is that you really can’t trust pollsters too closely aligned with one party or the other—certainly with PPP.

            For example, PPP last week had incumbent Missouri Senator Clair McCaskill one point ahead of Steelman.  Rasmussen today has Steelman up double digits, 51-39.  Even if McCaskill is closer than that, PPP is most likely way off, and as I’ve said all along, Democrats can count on losing that seat. 

            However, Rasmussen has Democrat Tim Kaine leading George Allen by two (46-44) in the hotly contested Virginia race; my projection that Allen would win is somewhat shaken, but "wir warden sehen".

            On the silly side, Rasmussen has American approving of the Queen (that would be LizII) 69-15 with 17 expressing no opinion (put me in the 17 percent category—who cares?).

            On the more serious side, Rasmussen finds approval of public employee unions—and this was taken since the Wisconsin vote—at 49-46 positive.

            Gallup weighs in with what could only be termed “Oh Really?” numbers.  Romney leads Obama big among Mormons, 84-13, but Obama leads among Jews 64-29.

            All together now…”Oh, really!”

            If you plan to follow this blog on a regular basis, you need to know the translation is “we will see” for “wir warden sehen”.  It’s one of my favorite German phrases, even more than “Siel Heil”.

Friday
Jun082012

"Liberty Express" To Feature CACR12 Debate

            Having procured a copy of the entire debate on CACR 12, I’ll be using highlights in a special hour-long edition of “The Liberty Express” next week.  Taped Monday, the show airs on Manchestertv23 Monday at 10 p.m., Thursday at 9 p.m., and Sunday at 6 a.m. and again at noon—our Tuesday airing has been removed since the state went to all religious programming that night (for some reason, “The Liberty Express” is not deemed terribly religious).

            That and all prior episodes of the show are or will be available at vimeo.com/channels/libertyx.

            In fact, I’ve got the entire next month’s worth of shows all planned out.  The first half hour is usually devoted to liberty issues from around the world, the country, and the state with the second half hour set aside for travelogue footage.

            This week, I started talking about Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s efforts to ban 32 ounce sodas, and by the time I looked up, ten minutes had passed.  I never order sodas that large, but the matter has come to epitomize the worst in big brother or nanny state government in my Libertarian eyes, so I got a bit carried away.

            Yes, the seven Manchester redistricting serpents make another appearance—they’ll never go away.

            With all the rain and dreary conditions at the time of taking, I decided to go to the bright sunshiny streets of Montreal on Canada Day, July 1, 2001, for the second half hour.  It was during the Jazz Festival when I taped the entire B-52s concert on the Fourth.  There was also a great Arts Festival in La Village.  And as I wondered to the Bell Center to film the many Canadian championship plaques and their retired jerseys, I took great pleasure in filming a championship Bruins jersey in a store window.

            Thus, the "On The Road" segment is fun rather than educational this week.

            Be forewarned, I will not be running many pro side speeches in my hour-long report on CACR12 (you can be sure, not a word of Rep. David Hess’s unending tissue of half truths will make the cut).  I’ll tend to focus on the anti-speeches—hey it is my show after all.  You want to bloviate on the pro side, get your own show—Reps. Manuse, Hoell, myself, and Rep Cohn’s (is that spelling correct?) fantastic final words (just to be fair, I’ll throw in the uninspired words from Majority Leader Peter Principle as well…after all they might well have caused CACR12 to go down to defeat).

            As always, “The Liberty Express” is not for everyone…only those who place a premium on liberty.

            To commemorate the June 20, 1941 German invasion of the Soviet Union, the show taped that week will feature a full half hour of footage I recorded at a museum display in Berlin in 1991.  It was the fiftieth anniversary of the event, and a special display had been set up in the building which actually served as a Gestapo prison during the war (very near where the wall ran, at Gropius Bau).  With me offering commentary (and translations—perhaps even accurate ones) was my Irish friend and Berlinophile Jim.

            It’s a memorable half hour.

            For those overly sensitive, be forewarned.  The words “Sieg Heil” may well appear.

            The final week of the month of June will also be somewhat special.  For the second half hour, I will forego travel and read extensive sections (with appropriate graphics of course) from Dale Carpenter’s sensational new book “Flagrant Conduct:  The Story of Lawrence v. Texas, How a Bedroom Arrest Decriminalized Gay Americans”.

            It’s in honor of the 6-3 Supreme Court decision which was issued June 28, 2003, and seems appropriate now that a gay marriage case may well be headed to the court.  In fact, in his minority opinion in the Lawrence case, Justice Scalia stated that the decision could well lead to gay marriage being accepted.

            He was right!

            I hope to be off to Canada the week of July 1-4, so “The Liberty Express” will serve up a rerun:  a half hour of readings from great speeches in American history (parts of the Declaration of Independence, Ronald Reagan’s “Tear Down This Well” speech, the Gettysburg address, and JFK’s “Ich bin ein Berliner” speech which I re-enacted at the same spot JFK delivered it--Rathaus Schoneberg in West Berlin).  The second half hour will be the best of the B52s concert. 

             By the way, Channel 2 ran a B's concert last Saturday night, taped in their home town of Athens, Ga,  and the camera switches every second or two were not to my liking; of course, in my filming I had only one camera; it wasn't perfect but I actually liked the version of "Planet Clair" from Montreal  better than the one on Channel 2.  I managed to follow Kate Pierson around the stage as she did that haunting intro.  Also, in my filming of "Rock Lobster" a beech ball hit Fred Schneider at just the perfect moment while in Athens, Ga, no contact was made!  Of course, Channel 2 had interviews with the four Bs--I never realized their southern accents were so prounounded, even all these years after leaving Athens for other planets.

            The second week in July will most likely feature what I film the week before.  I’m planning a segment on where Ethan Allen was capture in Montreal and sent off to a horrid British prison boat, and I’m planning to read Jackie Robinson’s biography “I Never Had It Made” and film at the location he played minor league ball for the Montreal Royals.

            Liberty knows no geographic bounds.  Its only tether is the psychological bounds those of a fascist tendency would foist upon us (in German, “Der Mauer Im Kopf”, loosely translated as the wall inside one’s head).

            Long Live Lady Liberty!

            Long Live The Liberty Express!

Erich Schlegel/Dallas Morning News/Corbis

John Lawrence, left, and Tyron Garner recite the Pledge of Allegiance at a Houston rally after the Supreme Court's 2003 (June 28) decision in Lawrence v. Texas that the Texas sodomy law was unconstitutional.

Coming to "The Liberty Express" the last week in June, a look at the case that set gay American free, from the book "Flagrant Conduct" by Dale Carpenter.  Also coming soon to this blog, a review of the five-star book which should be a must read for all those intested in liberty!

Friday
Jun082012

GOP Leader Silva Will Support "Anyone But Romney"

Yes indeed, words have meaning, and in this age of instant media, they tend to linger forever!

Some times, the readers of this blog are just so darn wonderful that it makes all the effort worthwhile.  Here's a response I received to my story about Grade A Bufoon Majority "Leader" Silva yesterday.  I hadn't recalled this, but it's further proof that Rep. Silva apparently never considers the ramifications of what he says before he speaks, not a bad trait for a back bench blogger like me, but certaintly not the trait one would expect in a "leader".  It's more proof (as uf any is needed) that the Peter Principle should have kicked in years ago with this clown. 

So, we have the Majority Leader and the Deputy Speaker (as I recall) jumping on the Perry ship when it seemed like it was about to set sail, but when it ran aground on Gilligan's Island, the two had failed to bail.  Meanwhile, back on the coast the Speaker stuck with the Eft to the bitter end.  And yet, Peter the Unprincipled Silva has the audacity to attack free staters and Libertarians.  Last time I checked, Ron Paul kicked Perry's and The Eft's you know what in NH...making Free Staters and Libertarians far more main stream Republican than the Speaker, his Deputy, and the Unpricipled One.  Here'e the message from "Silence Dogood" (real names are always preferred, but psedonyms are accepted...what ta heck happened to Ernie Gore, by the way?) 

I said all along that while I was among Ron Paul's greatest supporters (I learned there were many like me), I thought we'd end up with Romney and could support him.  I would never have supported either The Eft or The Sanitarium One, and trust me, I would have stuck to it.  Some of us live by our word and by principles, apparently not the Unprincipled One (Peter Principle Silva was such a logical nickname I barely can take credit for it...His Vileness on the other hand was divinely inspired!)

Vielen Dank and here's the posting.

 

Let's not forget ol' Pistol Pete said he'd support "anyone but Romney" for President. I guess that Romney sticker on his car (with Majority WHIP plates as of last week, lest anyone forget how he wound up as Deputy Majority Leader....it wasn't because of the awesome job he was doing as Whip) is just a practical joke from his pals at the Nashua City Committee. Do us a favor and stick to making grilled cheese sandwiches on cable access, Pete. BTW, "Peter Principle" is probably the greatest political nickname since Slick Willy. Pete on Romney: http://en.terra.com/latin-in-america/news/rick_perry_tweets_here_we_come_south_carolina/hof17497
June 7, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSilence Dogood
  edit remove