Thursday, October 18, 2012

The LuLac Edition #2233, October 18th, 2012

The late Al Smith 


Back in the late 80s I was consumed with working in a social organization into a state powerhouse. A person I knbwew at the time said I was an ass for doing it because in ten years no one would even know what I was trying to do. The late Jim Ward desperately wanted to start his own radio station and did. He passed away in 1994 and today only a handful of people remember his name. Tonight President Obama and Mitt Romney meet at the annual Al Smith dinner in New York. It is a political event that is a staple in Presidential politics. Yet today on the radio I heard Smith being referred to as Alfred E Nueman and no one had a clue who he was. A refresher course for those who think that out of sight even though he ran for President 84 years ago) is out of mind. Al Smith was an American statesman who was elected the 42nd Governor of New York three times and was the Democratic U.S. presidential candidate in 1928. He was the foremost urban leader of the efficiency-oriented Progressive Movement and was noted for achieving a wide range of reforms as governor in the 1920s. He was the first Roman Catholic nominee for President. In 1918 Smith, after narrowly winning the governorship, appointed a commission to recommend steps New York state government could take to become more responsive to the needs of everyday citizens. He also took the politically risky step of defending socialist assemblymen who had been denied their right to sit by the Assembly's new speaker. Although he lost the 1920 election, Smith returned to the governor's mansion in 1922, 1924, and 1926. As governor, Smith fought for the passage of several important progressive reforms, including the creation of government subsidized housing, hours limitations for women and child workers, and an expansion in the state's financing of public education. Al Smith is best remembered for his failed presidential campaign of 1928. Smith sought to focus his campaign for the presidency on issues but he remained unable to overcome questions about his Catholicism (he was unpopular among certain segments, including Southern Baptists and German Lutherans, who believed the Catholic Church and the Pope would dictate his policies) and concerns that he was "too much of a New Yorker." Smith's Republican opponent, Herbert Hoover, won in a landslide with 444 electoral votes to Smith's 87.
116th District Representative Tarah Toohil. 


116th District State Representative Tarah Toohil had a video posted this week on You Tube. The video shows Toohil at a party with marijuana in sight, a bong and another woman who Toohil was kissing. The video was a very short event that was just a few pictures. Word about it came on Facebook the other night with a vague posting that a Republican in Luzerne County was going to embarrassed. The only people who should be embarrassed by this are the people who posted it. Attacking Toohil for “not having values”, the ad was a low blow and will only do more to enhance her chances. Toohil is in a tight race with Sugar loaf politico Ransom Young who is running with the blessing of former Representative Todd Eachus’ staff. Young disavowed knowledge of the video and said he had nothing to do with it. 
The Luzerne County Democratic party in an unprecedented move came out against the video, "The unearthing of formerly private photographs of Tarah Toohil is dirty, nasty politics at its worst. These pictures from her past are not at all relevant to the issues facing Pennsylvanians and the residents of Luzerne County, nor are they in any relevant to, nor reflective of, Rep. Toohil's job performance today. Whoever peddled these photographs to the media ought to be ashamed of themselves. The Democratic Party wholeheartedly supports Ransom Young in the race for State Representative, and we do not believe that this non-issue should be a factor in the minds of voters of the 116th District when they go to the polls on November 6th. We condemn the use of 'below the belt' campaigning on either side of the aisle, and we wish Representative Toohil the best."  
Toohil gave a good response saying it is an instructive life lesson for young people. Toohil owned up to her past mistakes and advised young people to be more selective in their choices. Toohil said that she is not that woman anymore and hopes that her past behavior (which honestly is pretty tame) can be a life lesson for others. Toohil should have also said that in the age of social media these days, anything is fair game. And to be fair, I don’t think Tarah Toohil at that age even had a clue that she would one day upset the House Majority Leader of the Pennstlvaia State House of Representatives! 
The question I have is this. Where did the photos come from? Who had copies of them? And did they think this would sink her bid for re-election? If one wanted to run a tough campaign against Toohil they would do a comparison between her constituent service and every other Representative in the county. The knock on her has been that her local staff is unavailable, inexperienced and unresponsive to her constituents. As much as I like to see women kissing, a video on how she runs her local office would be more interesting and damning to her candidacy.


The person who posted the You Tube video gave his reasons. This comes from "Keystone Politics". “While I am the creator of this video, I am not the owner of these photographs. I do not know Ms. Toohil personally, I am not in the media, nor am I affiliated with either campaign or political party. ……no one should fault her for experimenting with marijuana in her youth. The issue is not what she has done in the past, but what she does now. As a legislator, she opposes decriminalization of small amounts of marijuana, and the legalization of marijuana for medical purposes. “These photos depict a public official who promotes policies not informed BY her life experience, but in spite of it. “There are millions of young Tarah Toohils out there right now in America, who like to party and experiment with drugs, just as she did. They’re smart, promising kids with bright futures who may one day become attorneys and State Representatives, just as she did. But unlike Tarah Toohil, some of them will suffer legal consequences for their youthful indiscretions. Because of this, they will have a stain on their record that will prevent them from ever achieving the level of success Rep. Toohil has. ..this video was not made on behalf of any campaign or political party, it was made on behalf of the millions of non-violent drug offenders in this country who currently occupy our prisons, it was made on behalf of all those who have had their lives destroyed for casual marijuana use, and it was made on behalf of those currently fighting a losing battle with drug addiction who find themselves in handcuffs instead of in treatment. “I do not hope for an end to Ms. Toohil’s political career, but for her to reassess her stance on these issues. Based on her “official statement” regarding this video, she hasn’t. Neither of us intend for young people to see this video and take away from it that “drugs are cool”. That’s totally beside the point, and frankly, young people are a lot smarter than that. “I know this video has caused Rep. Toohil much grief and I am prepared to remove it from this website on the condition that she publicly and DIRECTLY answer the following questions: 
1. Do you believe you should have suffered legal consequences for your past illegal acts?
2. If the answer is yes, where do you think you would be today
3. Do you believe others should suffer legal consequences for doing the same things you did?  




The Luzerne County Young Republicans will be holding its 2nd Annual “Youth in Politics” event on Sunday, October 21, 2012 from 5pm – 8pm at the Appletree Terrace at Newberry Estates. We are honored to have District Attorney Stefanie Salavantis as our Special Guest Speaker. She will be presented with the award of “Young Republican of the Year”. State Representative Tarah Toohil, last year’s winner of the award, will make the presentation. Additionally, we will present our first annual P.J. Stebbins Award. P.J. Stebbins was one of the founding members of the Luzerne County Young Republicans. He passed away earlier this year and the Young Republicans plan to honor him, on a yearly basis, by presenting an award in his name to a young person who has shown dedication, not only in the political arena, but also in his or her community. This year’s award will be presented to Aaron Kaufer, and will be presented by P.J.’s wife, Suzie Stebbins. Tickets are $50 per person and can be purchased at the door. Delicious food will be provided as well as an open bar. 


The American Nurses Association, in conjunction with the Pennsylvania State Nurses Association, which represents more than 211,000 nurses in the Commonwealth, endorsed United States Representative Lou Barletta for a second term in Congress. “Congressman Barletta has been a champion for nurses throughout the state of Pennsylvania within the 11th Congressional District,” stated PA State Nurses Association (PSNA) CEO Betsy M. Snook, MEd, BSN, RN. “As a member of the House Nursing Caucus, he has shown a willingness to work with ANA and PSNA to build long-term relationships with his constituent nurses. Congressman Barletta recognizes the important role nurses play in today’s changing health care environment and we are proud to stand behind ANA-PAC’s endorsement.” Rep. Barletta added, “I am deeply honored by the endorsement of the American Nurses Association and the Pennsylvania State Nurses Association. Nurses play a vitally important role in our nation’s health care system and are deserving of our respect and gratitude. I look forward to continuing to advocate for issues of importance to nurses throughout the district.” 


My good friend Mike Moran from WYLN TV and King’s College did a political rant the other day. But unlike other pop offs, this made sense. Here’s what he wrote about the debate and people’s reactions to it: Here it is, my one and only political rant for this election year. It isn’t even really political. Many of you watched the second presidential debate last night and felt compelled to comment here on Facebook. There are many who are impassioned by their candidate or party’s beliefs, and to this I say “Bravo”. However, when your views become the only views I am allowed to hold, I have a problem. This, after all, is the United States of America, the greatest nation on the planet. We are guaranteed the right to say and feel any way we like. Why then, do some constantly demean those who don’t agree with them? I understand disagreeing with another person’s philosophy, but when it boils down to smartass quips and making nasty comments to someone for their beliefs, that goes beyond politics… and being human. Some posters even made rude comments about the debate moderator, Candy Crowley’s weight. What does this have to do with political views? Is being rude and insensitive necessary? Are you standing on such weak beliefs that you need to distract us? You are probably the same people who organized the Anti-Bullying Rally at your child’s school last week! I’ve learned the hard way and tried very hard to instill in my children that integrity is not a word, it’s the way you live your life. As far as who I’m voting for… the voting booth in my ward is very private, and I plan to vote my conscience and for the best candidate to improve my life for the next few years. Stay informed, stay passionate but live with integrity. 


Mrs. LuLac called it. Two years ago she said that the venerable Newsweek Magazine was losing steam. Te content was getting skimpy and the stories were getting less wonkish. We stopped getting it last year as well as giving it as gifts for Christmas. Tina Brown took over the magazine and tried to save it with controversial topics and tribute issues like the one on the Beatles and the special edition when “Madmen” returned. The switch will make Newsweek the most widely read magazine yet that has given up on the print media, a signpost of how traditional print news outlets are being battered by an exodus of readers and advertisers to the Web. Since 2005, Newsweek's circulation has dropped by about half to 1.5 million and advertising pages plunged more than 80%, while the magazine's annual losses had lately reached roughly $40 million. In 1961 the magazine was bought by the Washington Post. The last print issue will appear in December. I was in high school when the two venerable coffee table magazines Look and Life went by the wayside. This news is not as impactful as that but it’s close. Look for Newsweek to gain an online presence similar to Huffington Post and Politico.





The Library at the University of Scranton is celebrating it's 20th anniversary and spokesman Charles Kratz will join ECTV Live hosts Tom Munley and David DeCosmo during the week of October 22nd to discuss it's history and the numerous events the library hosts that are open to the general public free of charge! As always, ECTV Live can be seen on Comcast Ch 19 each day at Noon and Midnight with additional showings on selected weekdays at 6pm. 


This Week on Sunday Magazine Brian Hughes speaks with business consultant Alexandra Levitt about the gap between job seeker skills, and the skills prospective employers are looking for. Magic 93’s Frankie in the Morning speaks with Father Jim Paisley about the new “Sweet Charity” CD, with proceeds going to  St. Joseph’s Center in Scranton. And an encore of Brian’s interview with chiropractor Joe Leonardi about the link between childhood obesity and bullying. Sunday Magazine, Sunday mornings at 5am on Great Country 93.7, 5:30am on 97BHT, 6am on 97.9X, 6:25am on Magic 93 and 7am on True Oldies 590, WARM


Penn State football is on WILK this week but Shadoe Steele and Saturday Night Live at the oldies return next week.
Our 1967 logo. 


Tens of thousands of Vietnam War protesters march in Washington, D.C.. Allen Ginsberg symbolically chants to 'levitate' The Pentagon.......An Egyptian surface-to-surface missile sinks the Israeli destroyer Eilat, killing 47 Israeli sailors. Israel retaliates by shelling Egyptian refineries along the Suez Canal......An abortion bill passes in the British Parliament...........In Philadelphia, incumbent Democratic Mayor James Tate calls his Republican opponent Arlen Specter the serving his first term an opportunist grand stander who will ruin the efficiency if Philadelphia if Luzerne County there are a number of hotly contested school board races among recently merged school districts. Politically this consolidation forced the parties to carve out tickets of people who come from at least one town in each section of the particular district. The board races are particularly problematic for districts that have a near even registration...and 45 years ago the number 1 song in LuLac land and America was the Doors “People Are Strange”, their follow up to “Light My Fire”.


At 10:36 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow!!! Another fully packed LuLac. Good thoughts on the Toohil story. And unlike the Professor, I love '67!!!

At 11:25 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Dave, I agree with you on two counts. I don't think that there is not a man alive who doesn't want to see two women kissing. That stated, the video was a smear job. It was a lot of nothing. And the poster's reason why is lame. Toohill was elected and had big shoes to fill. Eachus might have been a jarhead but at least his office ran smoothly. If Ransom Young wins, it will be because people want a grown up in that office. And it will have nothing to do with that video.
On Al Smith, I was appalled when I heard on TV and radio people who are getting paid money to not know who this great man was. Are they so freaking lazy that they couldn't do what my slacker grandson does, GOOGLE it?
And Newsweek, what a video. Brought back memories of the mid 60s when I was sweating the draft.
As always, good Thursday posting.

At 8:33 AM, Anonymous Pope George Ringo said...

It comes as no surprise that Americans have no idea who Al Smith is/was. Most have no sense of history.....which is exactly why they are dumb enough to put a man in the White House (in all probabliity) whose cure to the middle class woes is the give the rich more money. Really folks??? Well, say goodbye to your mortgage deductions, medicare, social security etc. etc. But say hello the Mitt!!!
My heart bleeds for you all....
Bless YOU>

At 12:29 PM, Anonymous JUNCTION said...

Brovo to Mike Moran and his words on Political Rant. I especially like the fact you used one word that I think we have totally forgotten the meaning of. INTEGRITY. I think we should all look it up in Mr. WEBSTERS book. We should all be thankful that our for fathers new the meaning. Again, Mike BROVO.

At 5:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am not coming out on one side or the other in the upcoming election,
but would somebody please set up an information office for Republicans ( unless they just dont care to deal with facts)on womens bodies specifically the reproductive system. Akins and now Walsh should be fact checked before they speak. These two have demonstrated that they know nothing about what they are talking about and are both an embarrasment to their party and intelligent people on both sides of the aisle and the issue.

Dr Gantry

At 5:26 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Green Pork.

The list of faltering or bankrupt green-energy companies:

Evergreen Solar ($25 million)*
SpectraWatt ($500,000)*
Solyndra ($535 million)*
Beacon Power ($43 million)*
Nevada Geothermal ($98.5 million)
SunPower ($1.2 billion)
First Solar ($1.46 billion)
Babcock and Brown ($178 million)
EnerDel’s subsidiary Ener1 ($118.5 million)*
Amonix ($5.9 million)
Fisker Automotive ($529 million)
Abound Solar ($400 million)*
A123 Systems ($279 million)*
Willard and Kelsey Solar Group ($6 million)*
Johnson Controls ($299 million)
Schneider Electric ($86 million)
Brightsource ($1.6 billion)
ECOtality ($126.2 million)
Raser Technologies ($33 million)*
Energy Conversion Devices ($13.3 million)*
Mountain Plaza, Inc. ($2 million)*
Olsen’s Crop Service and Olsen’s Mills Acquisition Company ($10 million)*
Range Fuels ($80 million)*
Thompson River Power ($6.5 million)*
Stirling Energy Systems ($7 million)*
Azure Dynamics ($5.4 million)*
GreenVolts ($500,000)
Vestas ($50 million)
LG Chem’s subsidiary Compact Power ($151 million)
Nordic Windpower ($16 million)*
Navistar ($39 million)
Satcon ($3 million)*
Konarka Technologies Inc. ($20 million)*
Mascoma Corp. ($100 million)

*Denotes companies that have filed for bankruptcy.

Imagine the impact in NEPA if this money were put into Clean Coal?

An industrial nation NEEDS CHEAP ENERGY.

How many readers are driving Chevy Volts or Toyota Priii?

At 6:13 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm not Tarah Toohil, but here's my two cents.

1. Do you believe you should have suffered legal consequences for your past illegal acts?

No, she shouldn't have. Marijuana use is common and innocuous and is still somehow and unbelievably illegal. It's not a drug, it's a plant, and more dangerous than alcohol or tobacco. No one was hurt by her toking up, so no one should care.

2. If the answer is yes, where do you think you would be today

The answer isn't yes. Marijuana use isn't immoral. Illegal, yes, but for the dumbest of reasons, so I frankly don't care if she broke that law or not. It's a dumb law, up there with DOMA and personhood amendments.

3. Do you believe others should suffer legal consequences for doing the same things you did?

No. No one should be in trouble for smoking marijuana, for any reason. It's not unhealthy, it has some medical benefits to it, and it's also rather enjoyable. It's something people have done for centuries and continue to do to this day, including the three past Presidents of the United States. I occasionally smoke, and the next time I do, I will toast a toke to Tarah Toohil.

The larger question is if she was a man that got stoned and kissed another man, would the public be as sympathetic? There's a larger double standard that we need to be concerned about. How this society looks at both marijuana and sexuality need to be reevaluated. Neither one disqualify anyone from holding public office.

At 6:13 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

That should be less dangerous than alcohol or tobacco, not more.

At 9:13 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't get the big deal on Toohil. She was a democrat before she ran, so the whole conservative value thing doesn't even apply. She isn't a hypocrite because being a pot smoking rug (edited) r is right in line with liberal ideology

At 9:13 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yonk, sentiment seems to be with Touhill for being outed in that video. Unlike some, I think the person who posted it gave a great explanation. I also believe that the old story of Do as I say and not what i do plays a major part in all of this. She broke the law and was not caught so she paid no consequence. Today, she holds the legislative opinion that there should not be an approved medical use and she believes that a minor user should be prosecuted. I'm sorry but that to me is a typical "look down your nose" attitude and I've had enough ofit in my long life time. Her opinions should be made public viz her actions. It was OK for her but not for the next college student. To hell with Tarah Toohil, she did the crime and now her better than thou attitude is causing her to own up to what she did. I don't have a problem with her hacritical attitude being made public.


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