Thursday, May 22, 2014

The LuLac Edition #2662, May 22nd, 2014


Were there problems at certain VA facilities? Yes. Did they need to happen? Certainly not. But before you start putting this on the current administration, consider this list of Senators who voted no to aid veterans. Yet these guys thump their chest about the military and the debt they paid. But that debt doesn’t extend to follow through after the fact of service. John Boehner can turn on the water works all he wants but these are the names that have said no. Cry over that John!


Our friend Steve Urbanski sent us this invite. Thought I’d pass it along with his blessing.
Urbanski Farms Clambake 14 is this Sunday at Urbanski Farms, Mountain Top, PA. Gates open at 11AM. The weather looks good 72 degrees and only a 10% chance of rain. Come join us for the fun. Deena Urbanski Memorial Raft Race. Little Wapwallopen Duck Derby, Softball, Volleyball, Clams and lots of food, Live Entertainment, and the Spam Barbecue.


Just an observation on the race for Congress in the 17th District. Matt Cartwright is of course the incumbent and faced no opposition in his primary. The Republican party had three candidates. I had the pleasure of meeting two of them. Matt Dietz and Matt Connolly. Both were two young dynamic men who might have had a puncher’s chance at the first term Democrat.
Connolly already had outside national funding lined up. Dietz most likely could have received comparable aid. But what the GOP did here was have a primary. They love their primaries!
When my friends Jimmy O’Meara, Susan Zakowski and Tiffany Cloud ran their “Issues and Eggs” forum in Dupont, I did not get a chance to ask this question of both Mr. Dietz and Mr. Connolly,
It was “Mr. (insert name here,) Connolly or Dietz, he seems like a fine fellow. Young, energetic, well spoken, why are you running against him, isn’t this the type of guy you could support?”
In Tuesday’s primary Connolly got about 6969 votes and change. Dietz got about 4130 for a total of 11,399 combined.
The third candidate, Schuylkill County Coroner David Moylan who we never saw here in Lulac land and who did not even have the interest to fill out a questionnaire from the League of Women voters got 9209 votes.
So if one candidate had run against the Schuylkill County candidate, they might have won. A spirited debate between the liberal Cartwright and a Conservative like Connolly or Dietz was denied.
Two things here, competition is good but when you a minority party in a district, why can’t you pick one candidate? Connolly and Dietz were here. Connolly especially was busting his ass, engaging people. Why would anyone in this District bother to vote for someone in the Fall who never showed up?
Congressman Cartwright……take your seat. The GOP just handed you a pass.


Congressman Matt Cartwright. (Photo LuLac archives).
Statement by Congressman Matt Cartwright on Gay Marriage Ban Ruling in Pennsylvania
Washington, D.C. –Congressman Matt Cartwright issued the following statement today after U.S. District Judge John E. Jones III ruled Pennsylvania’s ban on gay marriage unconstitutional:
“I have known Judge Jones for many years and was privileged to practice as a lawyer in his courtroom. I applaud Judge Jones’s decision finding Pennsylvania’s discriminatory ban on gay marriage unconstitutional and appropriately tossed aside. With today’s historic ruling, Pennsylvania joins a growing number of other states in recognizing that everyone should be treated equally under the law.


 State Attorney General Kathleen Kane. (Photo: LuLac archives)
State Attorney General Kathleen Kane on the Gay Marriage Ruling: This is an historic day. More importantly, today brings justice to Pennsylvanians who have suffered from unequal protection under the law because of their sexual orientation. When state-sponsored inequality exists, citizens are deprived of the full protections that the Constitution guarantees. Our Commonwealth progressed today and so have the hopes and dreams of many who suffer from inequality.
Today, in Pennsylvania, the Constitution prevailed. Inequality in any form is unacceptable and it has never stood the test of time. I have remained steadfast in my decision not to defend Pennsylvania’s Defense of Marriage Act because I made a legal determination as to the unconstitutionality of this law. I am pleased that a learned legal mind such as Judge Jones ruled similarly."


Governor Tom Corbett. (Photo:
Oakie Doakie!!!



This week on Community Forum we will discuss the D-Day exhibit now open at the Everhart Museum in Scranton. Mike Remish hosts Sunday at 6 am on 94.3 The Talker, 6:30 am on NEPA's Sports Radio-The Game 1340/1400am and 100.7 fm, and at 7:30 am on 105 The River



There's a lot of FREE activities scheduled through the Spring and Summer at Libraries throughout Lackawanna County and ECTV Live hosts David DeCosmo and Rusty Fender will review the list with Library Director Mary Garm on the May 26th series of programs. ECTV Live is aired on Comcast Cable Ch19 throughout the week. The program is presented each day during the Noon and Midnight hours with some additional showings on selected days at 6pm.


Tune in to Sue Henry's "Special Edition" this week as Sue recaps the week's news. Special Edition is heard Saturdays and Sunday on these Entercom stations, WILK FM Saturday at 2pm Sunday at 6 am on Froggy 101 Sunday at 7 am on The Sports Hub 102.3 Sunday at 7 am on K R Z 98.5 Sunday at noon on WILK FM 103.1.


Want to hear some great parodies on the news? Tune in to WILK Radio at 6:40 and 8:40 AM on Mondays. As Ralph Cramden used to say, “It’s a laugh riot!”


WYLN TV's Tiffany Cloud's program "The Storm" will feature shows all day Memorial Day outlining Veteran's stories. The shows start at 10:30am and continues until 6pm on WYLN TV 35.  


Tune in Wednesdays on WILK Radio for Karel on the Street. Hear some of the funniest and heartwarming comments on the issues of the day on Webster and Nancy with Karel Zubris.

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As a young music fan, I had a working knowledge of Duke Ellington. Having grown up in the 60s, I regularly watched Ed Sullivan and other variety shows. Despite the problems with discrimination in the U.S. at that time, the Duke always had a seat at the entertainment table. When I went to college at King’s and started working t the radio station WRKC FM, I got an appreciation for Ellington doing an afternoon jazz show. I regularly got letters from the inmates at Chase prison and was exposed to their thoughts on the masters of jazz. Forty years ago this week Duke Ellington passed away. 

As a 20 year old I was stunned that each TV network at 11:30PM ran a half hour tribute to Ellington. The last time they did that was when Lyndon Johnson had died in 1973. People of my parent’s age, all white were sad and nostalgic at the same time. Murmurs of phrases like “That was real music” abounded all around me. Ellington was born in Washington, D.C. but made his mark at the Cotton Club in New York. In the 30s the Ellington band became famous worldwide by touring Europe. 

Jazz history, even music history was made in 1941 when Ellington collaborated with Billy Strayhorn. The duo worked on the most popular, brilliant and iconic jazz tunes of all time. In the 50s, the Ellington band had a renaissance at the Newport Jazz Festival in Rhode Island. Ellington became a staple in movies, most record labels, late night TV talk show and Variety hours.
The Duke was said to have elevated Jazz to an art form. What it did was put his brand of music into the mainstream so that most thinking people could enjoy it. He was eloquent and had that touch of class.

One of the big regrets of my life is that I never saw Ellington. My friend, “Duke” from Dallas actually got his nickname for his devotion to the man. Mrs. LuLac and her mother saw him perform in the late 60s at a fair in Berks County. The closest I got was to see his grandson at the Kirby.

It has been reported that his last words were, "Music is how I live, why I live and how I will be remembered At his funeral, attended by over 12,000 people at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine, Ella Fitzgerald summed up the occasion, "It's a very sad day. A genius has passed [ Indeed.

In Pennsylvania, Governor Milton Shapp, and his Lt. Governor bask in the renomination for a second term in Harrisburg, the GOP will be putting up Drew Lewis and State Representative Ken Lee…in the 120th District in Kingston, Democrat Kevin Nelson will square off against incumbent Frank O’Connell….and forty years ago this week the number on song in LuLac land and America was Midnight at the Oasis by Maria Muldaur.


At 8:56 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Shocker! John Boehner today cried about the VA and the treatment of Vets! John did not serve by the way.
Look up the key Republicans from John to Mitch to Mitt and with the exception of John McCain none served.
I am of the same age group and I served. Volunteered as a matter of fact.
These guys are carrying on for show. They have again and again demonstrated that they couldnt care less for active duty soldiers or Vets!

At 10:22 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Veterans Affairs: Historical Budget Authority, FY1940-FY2012
Congressional Research Service


"Budget authority—the amount of money a federal department or agency can spend or obligate to
spend by law—for veterans’ benefits and services has increased significantly since FY1940. In FY1940, the budget authority for veterans’ benefits and services was $561.1 million, and in FY2012 the budget authority was $125.3 billion, or
more than 200 times the FY1940 budget authority. In constant 2011 dollars (i.e., inflation-adjusted), the FY2012 budget authority is 14 times
the FY1940 budget authority. The increases over time have reflected the impact of
increases in the number of veterans as the result of wars and other conflicts, the aging of the veteran population, and changes in benefits and services provided for veterans. This report
provides information on the historical budget authority of the Department of Veterans Affairs
(formerly the Veterans Administration) for FY1940 through FY2012. Budget authority is presented in both current dollars and constant 2011 dollars."

8:46 and Yonk neglect any thoughtful in-depth consideration falling back on typical auto-reponse they so fervently blame others for.

As illustrated above the funding has been provided to the VA. What the hell are they doing with it?

Our president appears overwhelmed by the task at hand and almost paralyzed by his responsibility, appearing to "buy time".

If you want to see what ObamaCare will look like in ten years take a look at the VA.

Give me a voucher and let me go to any doctor or any hospital. I'll seek out better service and hope the VA hospital is part of it - at some point.

I would never be so arrogant as as to think a person cannot make an informed decision because they did not "serve". Seems like the current "general" is doing a pi$$ poor job running the VA. They need a CEO who can lead the VA.

At 10:48 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yonki, wonderful tribute to Duke Ellington as only you could do. Politics yes, pop culture and nail it every time.

At 11:11 PM, Anonymous Tiffany Cloud said...

One clarification--I did not organize the Issues and Eggs event...I was merely asked to host/moderate it. Event was organized by Jim O'Meara. My days of organizing political events are long OVER.
On a separate note, as the wife of a three tour veteran who waited TWO YEARS for medical retirement from the military (was part of VA backlog) despite being hit six times in combat and having two purple hearts, I know all too well what a MESS that organization is from an administrative standpoint. The VA and military medical records are not electronically linked which is a large part of the problem--paperwork going back in forth. Hello, let's call the Pony Express. There is little-to-no transparency as to medical retirement status for our veterans waiting VA disability ratings (thought this admin was supposed to be "the most transparent ever"...last I checked Obama in office 5+ years now so the blame GWB for this game is over). It's practically IMPOSSIBLE to be fired from a federal job such as a position at the VA (another problem--no consequences for bad performance), bonuses are handed out like they are going out of style (big govt folks love to hand out bonuses despite performance measures). Anyway--I applaud anyone who works at the VA who truly cares about our veterans, however, so much of it has become big govt bureaucratic mess...good insight as to what Obamacare might be like...a big old administrative mess.
Tiffany Cloud

At 11:18 PM, Blogger David Yonki said...

One clarification--I did not organize the Issues and Eggs event...I was merely asked to host/moderate it. Event was organized by Jim O'Meara. My days of organizing political events are long OVER.

At 11:23 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The VA and the screwing of the Veterans goes back long before the current administration. Consider the treatment of the Bonus Marchers,
Vets, by the administration in 1932 and Gen Complete Wack Job MacArthur,
who given his way would have had us in WWIII back in Korea fighting those 500,000 screaming Chinese who according to him didnt exist! We go on about Support the Vets and its always been bullshit! Agent Orange killed plants but didnt harm the troops was held onto thru the Reagan Administration. They are all guilty. Hell, fact is they didnt honor paychecks or pensions promised in the Revolutionary War. That too was clearly Barrack Obama's fault. Meanwhile wave the Flag all weekend. Its patriotic!!!

At 11:33 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

8:56 is for the most part right on.
However "the Cryer" from Ohio did enlist in the Navy but was quickly discharged due to a bad back. I bet he shed not a tear over that in 1968. Too bad, maybe they would have made a man of him. Still King of the Deferments remains Dick "Toughie" Cheney!Good thing considering his reputation with a gun.

At 5:33 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Love the Corbett comment which I know id yours. Before this election over Corbet will be just as liberal as you Yonki!!

At 7:29 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nice to hear congress is hard at work. The House passed a bill yesterday to hold those accountable for the disaster the VA has become. 33 Congressman voted against the bill and sent it to the Senate. They didn't pass it with one saying he has to read it before he does anything with is 3 pages...passed hundreds of pages of the ACA and said we have to pass it so we can see what is in it. Then 50 Senators send a letter to the NFL to get the redskins to change their name. They are officially a joke and all deserve to be voted out. Our veterans deserve better than that and you all should be ashamed of yourselves. They fought to protect the freedoms we all enjoy and you can't pass a 3 page bill to give them what they deserve. I think Marcus Lutrell, author of Lone Survivor and former Navy Seal,was right when he said all members of congress should be forced to get their care from the VA and we will see how fast that is corrected.

At 10:46 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

David, I just wanted to tell you how much I appreciate the tribute to Duke Ellinton. You are 60, I heard you say it on the radio the other day, and I am glad that even at the age f 20 you recognized the genius of the Duke.

At 12:16 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The the best health care idea I've heard. Getting the VA situation squared away would be a top priority and unlimited money would be available for immediate corrective action. ASAP, Now! We must work together on this one as brothers, they'd preach! Great plan and they could say they were doin' it for the Vets which not too many of our middle age leaders are as mentioned recently. For God's sake, honor the commitment you parsimonious pinheaded, peakerwoods! Treat these people with the respect they deserve and were promised and then some! Show some character at long last.

At 6:56 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Glad to see you mention Strayhorn,
a real talent as a co writer and an arranger. People dont realize somebody arranges all those parts for each musician and blends all the sounds together to achieve something they alone once heard in their head.
Those bands paid for arrangements and many were priceless. Thats where Quincy Jones and so many others trained. Hes the last of an era. I like Dorsey, Tommy or Tom and Jim. The Count, the Duke and Glenn Miller all were terrific. I saw a Dorsey Brothers Band a few years back and they looked like they needed new clothes, but sounded great.


At 9:41 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

One hit wonder Maria Muldour. A dour Carly Simon wannabee.

At 11:24 PM, Blogger David Yonki said...

Glad to see you mention Strayhorn,
a real talent as a co writer and an arranger. People dont realize somebody arranges all those parts for each musician and blends all the sounds together to achieve something they alone once heard in their head.


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