4-26-2003 Hot-dog vendors, bartenders and pretenders

Genius may have its limitations, but stupidity is not thus handicapped.--Elbert Hubbard

The mayor has been spotted in the Heights distributing his yard signs. Hereís his new motto: I promise, no more promises of progress. Now thatís something he could back up with action. Or more inaction.

Do policemen suffer from PMS? I couldnít believe what I was reading in the Leader this morning. Is it me? Our police chief previously notified all of us that the city has a long established ďred light districtĒ in the drowntown area and now he goes totally ballistic at the mere mention of hookers on our broken streets. He needs to make up his mind already.

Lighten up chiefie. This is what happens when you gamble away your future employment by steadfastly backing a ruthless tyrant. If a few of you myrmidons were anything more than trembling ďYes Men,Ē the sky might not be falling right now. Unfortunately, for the people that couldnít give a flying farg about open and honest government as long as their bi-weekly, taxpayer-supplied stipends arrived on time, the end is near. You backed the wrong horse. You were willing to sit idly by, while one man destroyed the city, brow beat and told lies about your fellow city employees and holds contempt for practically everyone he needs to deal with on a daily basis. Basically, you fu*ked up. You sold out the trusting residents of the city and now the residents of the city are rising up and demanding their remonstrance. Iím sorry. A remonstrance is a type of pickle found only on the South Island of New Zealand. New Zealand is a country. Itís far away. I didnít mean to confuse you.

The less than smart quotes as reported by the Leader:

"He's a bartender. He's not an expert on drugs and prostitution," George said of McCarthy, who owns McCarthy's Tavern on the Hill. "He wants to shoot his mouth off, but when the time comes, he shuts right up."

Very, very, very professional. I guess the strain of seeking a new job is beginning to manifest itself.

"As far as I know, Tony Thomas is only a hot-dog vendor," George said. "He gets $12,000 to go to two meetings a month. And he's telling me I don't do my job?"

I was under the impression that council meets four times a month. What the hell would he know about that? The top cop, the mayor doesnít even attend the meetings. Letís break this down. $12,000 a year. Thatís a thousand a month, unless youíre using the mayorís approach to math. Thatís $250 per meeting. Thatís a lot of money in the opinion of the thin-skinned chiefie. $250 a meeting. And then they have to deal with the phone ringing off the hook all year long and having their ear filled each and every time they venture out of the house. And they have that mayor attempting to blame them for all of his zany schemes and expensive foibles. And a police chief that denigrates them in public, because they dare to suggest that perhaps crime actually exists in Wilkes-Barre. I donít think $12,000 is excessive compensation for council members, I think $50,000 PLUS is excessive compensation for a police chief that follows the mandated company line: Crime? What crime? Thereís no crime in this city.

This one if my absolute fave:

"Just because a girl is walking down the street doesn't mean there's prostitution," George said. "Prostitution is an exchange of money for sex."

Just like his boss. He talks to us as if weíre a bunch of skinhead numbskulls raised by our sister/mother in a macadam-dominated trailer court somewhere near a septic wading pool. Did you guys catch that? Just because a girl is walking down the street doesn't mean there's prostitution. No sh*t Sherlock. Listen here Holmes, a criminal justice background is not a prerequisite to differentiate between the girls walking down the street and the girls with stretch marks around their mouths loitering on the streets. The dim-wits in charge of this city continue to mistakenly assume that the residents of this city are fellow dim-wits. Is it any wonder that the city is so screwed up? And all the while, the hookers scoff and laugh at our feeble and half-hearted attempts at moving them along.

You can dismiss this Leader story as election year grandstanding as the chiefie has attempted to do. The hot dog vendor sees the hookers. The bartender sees the hookers. More importantly, the residents see the hookers and the police chief insulted their intelligence today. May 20th will not only be a referendum on the competence of our equally troubled and troubling mayor, it will speak volumes about the perception that Wilkes-Barre has become a place where lawlessness is overlooked in some circumstances. Who should we blame for that?

How about an e-mail?

******Hey cous,,,,,,,,I find it interesting that once again our illustrious Chief of Police (Tom McGroarty aka Tony George) today rebuked two of our councilmen for their increasing fears about the crime situation in our City. This is also the same man who months ago denied pretty vehemently that there was no drug problem in town, the hookers that patrol the streets on a daily and nightly basis have been there in the "red light district forever" so it is ok and now posts a Virgil Argenta for council sign in his yard along with McG's sign. This man cracks me up...two bullies signs on the front lawn of the CHIEF OF POLICE. Virgil fails to tell everyone that he is on probation for a year in the City of Scranton for attacking a man in a bar. The Mayor bullies and lies about people to try to win another term. He has left himself open once again for another law suit in addition to the personal one from Mr. Torbik to be coming shortly.

I think it is time for both papers to go up to Mr. Georges house and take a picture of the front yard and question him as to why he is endorsing a man for Council who is on probation for beating a man,,,this is very recent by the way,,,,must be Tony and Toms way to do business these days..........what a joke........have a great day******

You heard it here first. The mayor is courting another defamation lawsuit. He has this recurring habit of lying to the public when he constantly refers to the ďabusersĒ of the cityís health care benefits that are employed by the Wilkes-Barre Fire Department. He seems to think that if he repeats that lie long enough the public will believe it. All that he has managed to do is add another wrinkle, another sad chapter to his abject failure as a leader of anything.

Itís funny, during his reelection posturing, he has failed to mention the massive amounts of back pay owed to the members of the fire department or the education benefits owed to the veterans employed by the fire department that he has personally blocked for no apparent or logical reason. He calls himself a veteran (weekend warrior), but he denies the folks the benefits they earned while proudly serving in our armed forces. Sorry Tommy, but a massive weekend mobilization from Pennsylvania to Pennsylvania does not qualify one as being a veteran. In your case, a veteran of what?

As far as the police chiefís political endorsements goes, it really is troubling. If weíre ever going to turn the corner and have Wilkes-Barre rejoin the lists of great places to live, are Virgil and McTommy going to make that happen? I think we all know the answer to that question and I think chiefie knows the answer too. He may have some signs on his lawn, but not one of them will ever amount to living in a clean, neat and safe city. The umbilical cord is a tough thing to cut. I guess.

More fun and games. The Voice reported that the call center could cost the taxpayers $930,000 this year alone. Now why did the Voice have to go and rehash that? Mayor Tom already explained that nightmare. He said ďI did the best I could at the time.Ē Get over it! Now reelect me. He also pointed out that city council members were present at the ribbon cutting of that ill-fated mission, i.e., Mayor somehow good/Council somehow bad. Call Center? I only hearing about successful curbside programs and sections of ďsmoothĒ streets. Oh, and the pork he supposedly secured (for what?) has now grown from $51 million to $78 million in two short weeks. Did somebody say call center? Whatís that? The latest round of piles of garbage on our sidewalks is all we need to notice. Is this the only city that encourages piles of clutter as a sign of progress?

Scott, Peace, Gage Andrew and the new addition, Taylor Kate visited Wilkes-Barre today. Gage calls her ďTaylor baby.Ē Two days from now, sheíll be a month old. Amazing. She is beautiful and the Gagemeister is well behaved while in close proximity to her teeny self.

YES, I bought the boy a nifty new toy.

Da Boy!


The streets of Wilkes-Barre are not very hospitable to bicycles. I sh*t-canned my ten speed racer and acquired the now rapidly aging Huffy fifteen years ago. The constant bouncing and pounding has taken itís toll on the best $159.99 I ever spent. The aging Huffy is beginning to creak a bit while banging over the pot holes, which suggests that the welds are starting to give just a tad. I once had the misfortune of riding with a person when an important weld on his bike gave way. What happened to him was akin to sitting on top of crumbling Lincoln Logs at 25 miles per hour and on a severe downward pitch. Needless to say, it was a traumatic experience for him. It wasnít a very pleasant thing to observe either.

Today, a Wilkes-Barre copper dude dropped off two bikes at the humble adobe. I definitely have a near stiffy over one of them. Iím going to set the alarm clock and start working on it in the morning. Itís needs some tweaking, some lubing and some truing. It needs some Brillo and some tender loving care that only a bicycling enthusiast could provide. It has lots of potential and promises to be up to the pounding that this city can provide to a bike right quick. Iíll take it for a test drive tomorrow and Iím sure itíll be a pleasurable ride, but I canít help but to be saddened by the fact that the aging Huffy and I may just part ways within hours. That bike has been with me for fifteen years and has taken me through thick and thin for so long that it almost seems as if itís an extension of my body. Itís only ever toppled to the pavement twice. Once because of a car that had no brake lights and once because a little old lady stepped off the curb and directly into my handle bars. On both occasions I reacted very badly.

If things go the way that I expect them to go tomorrow, the aging Huffy will become a dust collector down in the basement, because I could never bare to throw it on one of the mayorís clutter piles. The Huffy was with me when my kids were little league toads, the Huffy was my companion when my mom was still alive and the Huffy was my main source of exercise when I couldnít even imagine one day being 44 years old, grossly overweight and totally out of shape. Thanks to that Huffy, Iím 44 years old and Iím still s were little league toads, the Huffy was my companion when my mom was still alive and the Huffy was my main source of exercise when I couldnít even imagine one day being 44 years old, grossly overweight and totally out of shape. Thanks to that Huffy, Iím 44 years old and Iím still lean and mean. I would surely prefer to have someone adopt it and put it to good use than to see it rot in the basement. Does anyone want an aging Huffy? Iíll never be able to throw it away. Iím loyal to a fault and the same can be said of that bike.

Itís time for some serious tunage. Gage experienced his second Easter, but the first when he could play in all the Reindeer games.

Bunny was here

1st egg hunt

Big bro' with Sis'

Iíve got this 80ís itch tonight. Itís been bugging me all day. No! No fu*king Culture Club for Christís sake! Iím thinking more along the lines of Duran Duran and some very early Ultravox. And Ruts the Crack!

Mayor Leighton

Chief Dessoye