Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Guest Blog: Tag Team Debating

Tag Team Debating

Part of a series of articles on Political Events in Connecticut by Tim D. Enchanter
Watching the political debates, I noticed something that nobody seems to be talking about.  Then again, most people are concentrating on just the Presidential Debates between President Obama and Governor Romney.  Some people are talking about the Vice-Presidential Debate between Vice-President Biden and Congressman Ryan.
But just two hours before the Vice-Presidential Debate I also watched the Senatorial Debate between Congressman Chris Murphy and Linda McMahon.  This gave me a perspective on the Vice-Presidential Debate that continued to be validated in all the subsequent debates, Presidential, Senatorial, and Congressional.  It seemed like I was watching Tag Team Debates.
Maybe the involvement of McMahon, famous CEO of World Wrestling Entertainment (formerly known as the World Wrestling Federation), inspired this thought.  But it was the consistency of the other side which made me think this way.
It is one thing to have similar ideology, similar ideas, and similar solutions to similar problems.  That is expected of a political party.  But it is quite another matter to see the same personal attacks used against different opponents, no matter who they are, even when those attacks make no sense.
For example, Chris Murphy accusing Linda McMahon of being part of the fictitious “War On Women” is blatantly slanderous and incredibly stupid considering that Linda IS a woman.  Even when she points this out, Murphy continues the mantra like a brainwashed cult follower.  This quickly stops sounding like an argument and starts sounding like a script reading.
Watching Murphy versus McMahon seemed to me to be watching Obama versus Romney, except Romney wasn’t there and Obama looked like a pasty white college kid trying to act tough.  In fact, if you have ever gotten a call from a college kid paid to read from a phone script you would see the similarities immediately.  Trying to get one of these hapless drones to talk to you is an exercise in frustration.  If the answer isn’t written on the sheet in the designated order, your only hope of intelligent conversation is the phrase, “Let me get my manager.”CONTINUED:

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Thank you First Responders

The Insider staff would like to first thank you first responders, dispatchers, fire, ems, police & linemen!!!  Thank God for brave people who go above and beyond and do the hardest jobs around. Thank you to all who helped keep us safe, right down to the man at the hardware store who stayed late to sell plywood or the woman at the gas station who stayed open late so the last person could fill up.  Our hearts go out to the people who lost loved ones, and the family of the firefighter lost in Easton.

Voter Registration Deadline Extended

10/30/2012 - Voter Registration Deadline postponed till November 1st at 8:00PM
In response to the dangerous weather impacting the state from Hurricane Sandy, Governor Dannel P. Malloy on Sunday evening signed an executive order extending the in-person voter registration deadline in Connecticut to Thursday, November 1, at 8 p.m. for those who intend to vote in the upcoming election.  The deadline had originally been scheduled for Tuesday, October 30, at 8 p.m.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Raw: Amateur Video of Sandy Showing Up

Hurricane Safety Tips Checklist- Be Prepared

Hurricane Safety Tips Checklist – Be How to Prepare for the Annual Hurricane Season
1) Listen to the forecast. Pay attention to any warnings and determine whether to evacuate or ride out the storm.
2) If you choose not evacuate, find a safe shelter to stay in that is adequately outfitted with emergency supplies.
3) Ensure your family knows when to go to the shelter and how best to get there.
4) Install storm shutters on your home, or cover windows with plywood to keep them from breaking.
5) Purchase supplies such as non-perishable food, water, flashlights, a portable radio, batteries, and a first-aid kit.
6) Have rain gear and extra clothing stored in your shelter and easily accessible.
What to Do when a Hurricane Warning is Issued by the National Weather Service
1) Get a hold of family members to determine their whereabouts and enact your safety plan.
2) Gather animals in a safe place.
3) Fill your gas tank to ensure you can evacuate the area if necessary.
4) Follow the directions of local authorities and listen to local weather reports.
5) Don’t wait until the last minute to evacuate. If you wait, exit routes may be at a standstill or completely closed.
6) Move forward with securing your home, closing shutters and covering windows.
7) Ensure everything that can be blown around and cause harm is tied down securely.

Middletown High School Shelter Open!

From Councilwoman Kleckowksi:

Shelter will open at noon-Middletown High School on Newfield Street. This is a pet friendly shelter. Pets should be crated. If you need to go to the shelter be sure to bring all your medications and your own pillow and blanket (there are pillows and blankets if you forget). For more information call 211. Thank you to all volunteer members of Emergency Management. Be safe!!! We are in good hands..Emergency Operation Center is up and running. All Emergency Personnel are on stand-by ready to ensure our safety. Thank you to all who are working to keep us safe!!!

Powerful Storm Sandy- Updates

Live Hurriane Sandy Coverage- The Weather Chanel

Friday, October 26, 2012

Common Council to get Ipads

Councilman Robert Santangelo demonstrates what an ipad is and how the interwebs works.
Common Council members will be issued ipads to receive meeting minutes and agendas on. Cost per year is $20,000 for the program. Meetings will be streamed live on the internet. The Granicus software will cost $118,000 to implement and will include digital archiving. The Granicus system for the ipad is meant to save money, and  offset the cost of paper copies and the delivery of council materials by a police officer as per charter rules. No word if the ipads will have tracking software, keystroke loggers, or cameras to spy on council members in their homes, but tin-foil hat wearing is encouraged.

Suzio Derails Democratic Accusations, Opposition Party Backpedals

Republished with permission from author/columnist Dan Lovallo, originally published on his website here:

Sen. Suzio     Connecticut Democrats have gone wild in the CT-13th District Senate race, doing anything possible to smear incumbent Sen. Len Suzio, R-Meriden.  The 13th District has been a Democrat stranglehold for years, until longtime Sen. Tom Gaffey ran afoul of the law, pleaded guilty to  misdemeanor charges and resigned from office two years ago.  That opened the door for Suzio, a fiscally-responsible conservative Republican, to win a special election.  Suzio’s victory, combined with his overall knowledge of finances and Connecticut’s slight-of-hand state budget, has left the Democrats sore ever since.
     Suzio A Budget Expert
Suzio has forgotten more about the state budget than most Democrats know.  Gov. Dannel P. Malloy’s budget chief, Benjamin Barnes, does everything possible to avoid Suzio’s questions at hearings on budget matters.  It was Suzio who predicted one month into Malloy’s first budget – which increased spending and imposed the largest tax hike in Connecticut history –  that it would be out of balance.  Suzio was correct and the administration used every trick in the book to balance the budget, as mandated by the state constitution.  It was Suzio, who led the charge against key components of the Democratic platform, such as increased taxes and fees and early prison release.  It was Suzio who successfully fought Democrats and the administration on using  taxpayers’ money to renovate Connecticut’s Communist Party headquarters.
Democrats Up To Tricks Again
     So it came as no surprise that Democrats were up to their old tricks again, calling a news conference on the steps of Meriden’s city hall Tuesday.  All the usual Democrat participants were there, Meriden Mayor Michael Rohde, Middletown Mayor Dan Drew, and of course, Suzio’s opponent in the election,  Dante Bartolomeo.  Except the Democrats did not plan on one attendee, Suzio himself.
Then the Democrats did, what they always do, when they lose on the issues, started throwing mud against the wall.  Suzio was accused of underhanded tactics.  He was involved in “push polls” and “dirty tricks.”  Before it was over, you would have thought it was Suzio who cost the Yankees a trip to the World Series.
However, when Suzio asked the Democrats to prove the charges, they couldn’t.  Then Suzio delivered what this pathetic trio on the steps of City Hall could not: proof.  “My financial report from the state Elections Commission shows that we haven’t paid for a poll to be conducted,” Suzio was quoted as saying in the Middletown Press.
     “It’s a manufactured scandal to distract from the outrageous taxes, this outrageous early release law, the outrageous, out-of-control spending that my opponent doesn’t want to talk about. That’s what this is about…I can win this campaign on the issues. I don’t need to resort to dirty tactics” he said.
The Democrats were left to wilt behind their own microphones.   Drew offered some lame comment, admitting Suzio was not a participant but that he didn’t denounce the practice.
Pathetic.  Just pathetic.
     Suzio won the day, because he challenged these three wind bags, who tried to divert attention from the fact the blueprint they support has left the state, essentially bankrupt.  My only regret is that
Sen. Suzio
     Suzio doesn’t live in my district, so I could vote for him.  Voters of the 13th District should reject these tactics and send Bartolomeo and her likes a clarion call by re-electing Sen. Suzio.

Guest Blog: Learn from History. Don't Repeat it

Guest Blog: History. Don't Repeat it. By Ken McClellan.

     I've heard that there's nothing new under the sun and that history repeats itself.  It amazes, and sometimes disturbs me that some of the things I see going on in our country happened before.  We need to know history.  We need to be informed of the past.  As Edmund Burke said:  "Those who don't know history are destined to repeat it."  Many people in many societies have tried many systems of government and many systems of economics.  We need to study which ones have worked, and which have not and why.  Repeating failed experiments is a waste of time and resources.  President Obama and Governor Malloy have not studied history or economics.  Both are pushing for larger government, more taxes.  Here is a statement of fact: No society, anywhere, anytime has ever taxed itself into prosperity.  It doesn't work.  Never has and never will.  President Obama and Governor Malloy may be highly intelligent people, but even they can't make it work.  Another statement of fact:  The larger the government, the less free the people and the less prosperous is the society.   
     Again, history shows time and again, as a society increases the size of it's government, ie employees, prosperity and freedoms decrease.  A larger government requires more resources, which removes those resources from the private sector, and doesn't produce a tangible return.  The more layers of administration you have, the less money goes to the end result.  As an example take disaster relief.  Tax money is distributed by the federal government to state governments. A staff is needed to decide how much to give to the state, if any.  Studies are needed to determine where resources are most needed, thus spending a significant percentage of the money earmarked for disaster relief.  Next the state gets an amount of money, studies where the resources are needed, divides it up, taking another chunk for administrative costs.  The state solicits bids for supplies, equipment and labor.  The bids are evaluated, a company is selected and the money is spent, again costing money in salaries.  Compare that to a volunteer charity, like the Salvation Army.  All funding goes directly to the disaster area, in the form of building supplies, food, blankets and water, along with volunteers to distribute it.  The result is near 100% of the money actually gets to the people who need it.  Private companies continually try to reduce the administrative overhead; charities are rated on their percentage of overhead.  Why should the government not operate under the same rules?  Historians, Liberals and Economists are all welcome to challenge this assertion.  
     Show me one example where the reverse is true, for either of my statements.  You can't.  Because big government and high taxes have never worked.  President Obama and Governor Malloy can't make it work, either.  Albert Einstein defined insanity as performing the same action repeatedly, expecting a different result.  I wonder sometimes, are the President, Governor and their supporters unaware or ignorant of history, or do they believe that they can create a different result with the same process?  Ignorant or insane?  I think either should disqualify someone from holding a position of responsibility.  I'll close with a final quote, from Marcus Tullius Cicero, Roman statesman, 106-43 BC:  "When a government becomes powerful it is destructive, extravagant and violent; it is an usurer which takes bread from innocent mouths and deprives honorable men of their substance, for votes with which to perpetuate itself". 

Marcus Tullius Cicero, Roman Statesman, 106-43 BC
Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice; moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue.
The more laws, the less justice.
The budget should be balanced. Public debt should be reduced. The arrogance of officialdom should be tempered, and assistance to foreign lands should be curtailed, lest Rome become bankrupt.
The budget should be balanced, the treasury should be refilled, public debt should be reduced, the arrogance of officialdom should betempered and controlled, and the assistance to foreign lands shouldbe curtailed lest Rome become bankrupt.
The national budget must be balanced. The public debt must be reduced; the arrogance of the authorities must be moderated and controlled. Payments to foreign governments must be reduced. If the nation doesn't want to go bankrupt, people must again learn to work, instead of living on public assistance.
To be ignorant of what happened before you were born is to be ever a child. For what is man's lifetime unless the memory of past events is woven with those of earlier times?
If you pursue good with labor, the labor passes away but the good remains; if you pursue evil with pleasure, the pleasure passes away and the evil remains.

Thomas Paine: “Moderation in temper is always a virtue; but moderation in principle is always a vice”

These are important lessons for the people of today. 

Some great thinkers, statesmen and writers have commented on democracy and morality, and I've gathered a few of my favorites here.  I tried to arrange them along with 2 Amendments to the Constitution.  They seem, amendments and quotations, to support each other very nicely.

Ken McClellan, of Middletown
*Editors note: McClellan is chairman of the Middletown Republican Town Committee

Brace Yourselves for Storm Sandy!

To all the readers out there the staff at the Insider would like to say please brace yourselves & your families for Storm Sandy! Hopefully the big wigs at Connecticut Light and Power have a plan in place this time and have learned from last year's storms better clean up methods. Please keep all the linemen and emergency first responders in your thoughts and prayers over the weekend to stay safe! 
Reports from City Hall say Middletown High School is on stand by to be opened as a shelter if need be. Stay safe!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Video Part II Westfield Residents Candidate Forum: Suzio & Bartolomeo, Kleckowski & Lesser

Video Courtesty of Palin Smith.  Planning and Zoning Commissioner Dan Russo (D) gets rather nasty with Suzio about and the gas tax at the 20 second mark, but Suzio stands strong. Bartolomeo, along side Rep. Matt Lesser (D),  who was also present at the Reduced Gas event that Russo refers to does damage control. When challenged by an audience member about her presence at the event she so condemns, Bartolomeo attacks her constituents.

In the second video, Deborah Kleckowski talks gas taxes, small business owner taxes, and healthcare. She wishes to cut taxes and also reform education. Lesser attempts to hug every issue. Kleckowski reiterates the fact that she personally helped a number of families with special needs get justice and better education for their children during the events that lead to the ending of the contract with Superintendent Michael Frechette.

In the second part of the discussion, Kleckowski talks about the misconduct of the board of regents at Middlesex Community College and consolidation of services to cut costs to tax payers.

Insider Staff would like to thank the Westfield Residents Association and Jennifer Mahr who did a great job (moderator) for hosting this event. Thank you to Palin Smith for providing video.

For more videos from the event see Palin Smith's youtube channel at :

Guest Blog: All Politics are Local except when they are Not

All Politics are Local except when they are Not
Part of a series of articles on Political Events in Connecticut by Tim D. Enchanter

For many months, I have been walking the streets of my neighborhood as part of a health regimen. Once in a while, one or two of my neighbors will stop by and compliment me on both my resolve and the obvious weight loss. During one of these little talks, I received a little insight which inspired this series of articles.
During another chance meeting, Karen and Rick Patrick gave me permission to use their names and one of their business cards. They run a landscaping company named Garden Keeper. As a believer in Free Market Capitalism and in gratitude for the inspiration, I will give them a little free advertising here by giving you their website:
     The inspiration came when we were discussing the Connecticut race for United States Senate and how Linda McMahon seems to be leading in the 2nd Congressional District. Rick asked me a question which got my mental gears running: “Wouldn't  it be interesting if Mitt Romney won this state on Linda McMahon’s coattails?”
     For those of you not familiar with political terminology, this refers to a candidate at the top of the ticket helping candidates further down the ticket. Imagine a formal gathering where the men are wearing tuxedos. The men’s coats are split in the back. Cartoons often draw analogies between tuxedos and penguins because of the similarity in appearance.
     Now imagine a political cartoon where an important man is entering an important event. His coattails are so long that they drag on the ground behind him. Sitting on those coattails are a couple of less important men who are riding into this event on the coattails of the more important man. Everyone is so happy to see the more important man that the lesser men benefit from his popularity and gain entrance as an afterthought.
Now look at the 2008 Presidential Election. The idea of voting for the First Black President gave Barack      Obama the kind of coattails the Democrats have been dreaming of for decades. People who normally would not vote came to vote for history. Because these people were not familiar with other races, they would just vote for all the other candidates on the same line of the same political party. That is what politicians refer to as coattails. People show up to vote for one candidate and vote for the entire political party. Those who cannot get people to come and vote for them hope to ride into office on someone else’s coattails.
     Those of us running that year as Republicans knew we were all running against Obama. Some of us hoped Sarah Palin would give us the coattails of the First Woman Republican Vice President. Eventually, it seemed that the National Race provided competing coattails that dragged so far along the ground as to affect every race down to the State General Assembly.
      To me, this became evident in Connecticut’s 13th State Senate District, involving the towns and cities of Cheshire, Meriden, Middlefield, Middletown, and Rockfall. Two seats in the General Assembly, the 100th and 103rd Districts, demonstrated this effect as two popular State Representatives lost to challengers benefitting from Obama’s coattails. Ray Kalinowski and Al Adinolfi lost their seats to challengers Matt Lesser and Elizabeth Esty.
     The temporary effect of these coattails became evident when Adinolfi won back his Assembly seat in 2010. The voters in the 103rd District remembered the Representative who always cares about their welfare and the vacuum left by Obama’s absent coattails dragged Esty down in defeat.
     Esty is now the Democrat running for the 5th Congressional District, hoping that Obama’s Presidential coattails will help her enter the House of Representatives. Lesser, on the other hand, was able to solidify his power. He did this so well that I feel he deserves his own article. Read my opinions here and form your own:

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Letter to the Editor: Pessina: "I disagree with Teachers' Union Endorsement"

An Educational Advocate:

Over the past two years, Councilwoman Kleckowski has worked tirelessly assisting special needs families in working with local officials and those at DCF after the wake of the unfortunately named "scream room" controversy that occurred at Farm Hill School.  She worked with individual families who sought her help in establishing better standards of care for special needs students after the dismantling of the previous district wide Special Education program that had been held at Spencer School.
              Deb has continued to display her advocacy stemming from her being a member of the DECA Advisory Board for 20 years, a state DECA Judge for 6 years, an annual speaker for the Middletown High Community Service program for over 10 years and a supporter for Ryan Woods Autism Foundation.   She participated in the resolution the 466 labor-breach of contract by the previous BOE Administration.
As a Councilmember, she supported sick day donation for ill City employees and a professional advocate for educational opportunities and access for all students for over 20 years.   She is also a member of the newly created Career-Technical Education Advisory Board.   What is amazing, is as a mother of two young children, is that her advocacy is all volunteer time to better her community.  She does this in addition to her position as an Adjunct Professor at Middlesex Community College.
             Despite all the hard work I have mentioned that Councilwoman Deborah Kleckowski has put into Middletown education- the teacher's union Middletown Federation of Teachers Local 1381 has chosen to endorse Matt Lesser.
                Although Representative Matt Lesser is on the State Legislature's Education Committee, he could have done and/or could be doing so much more for the students of Middletown.  He supported the passing of a law that any incidences of restraint used in special education services have to be reported to the state after the fact; notwithstanding the issue that the current programs are failing our most vulnerable students- something that Candidate Kleckowski has already been actively trying to fix in Middletown.   
One wonders could the support from the Teachers Union he received be based upon his support for legislation regarding tenure that the teacher's union campaigned for?  If so, why didn’t they also support Deb for her tireless efforts she advocated for here in our city of Middletown?
                The statement given by Middletown Federation of Teachers Steve McKeever could also have been more complimentary to Deb, as she has proven her dedication to our Teachers and Educational system here in Middletown as Matt has done with his work on the Education Committee at the state level.   From my point of view and I am sure other Educational Advocates (Parents & Teachers), THEY BOTH are committed to improving education in our city and state in ways that make sense for all stakeholders!
                This endorsement sends a political negative message for a person who works so hard for education in our community which Deb does not deserve.   Also, when using the terminology ‘stakeholders’ it is our children, and youth who are the final stakeholders of our educational system too.  ,
 Councilwoman Deb Kleckowski will continue and always has been an Educational Advocate; in her eyes our children and youth of our city are the ones that matter most to her.    
 I don’t agree with the Teacher’s Union’s endorsement;  I ask that the voters of our city to show their appreciation for all of Deb’s efforts when they go to the polls by voting for Candidate Kleckowski.  
Please remember, when you cast your vote don’t send the wrong message to our children and youth by basing it purely on politics.  For if you do, the message is simple: “that hard work does not matter- it’s who can give you a hand up, not necessarily work or the greater good of all."

Councilman Phil Pessina
Minority Leader of the Common Council

Guest Blog: The Real Story of the Gas Rollback Event Meriden

The Real Story of the Gas Rollback Event Meriden :
Part of a series of articles on Political Events in Connecticut by Tim D. Enchanter
Thursday, October 18th, 2012 from 4-6pm at Danby’s Gulf Station in Meriden, CT

I was part of the Gas Rollback Event sponsored by Americans For Prosperity.  They had me directing traffic because they had run out of places in the line for the low gas price.  Here’s the TRUTH from an Eyewitness as to what transpired:
The event was a special lowering of the price of gas to the price it was under President Bush … $1.84/gallon … any other price you have seen is either a mistake or misprint.  AFP paid the difference between the regular price and the $1.84 for 15 gallons per car.  This was available to the first 150 cars in line and the event started at 4pm and was scheduled to end at 6pm.  For The Record, it took until 7:30pm to get the last car through at only 15 gallons per car, so 150 cars was actually generous because it took 3½ hours instead of just 2.
However, people had started showing up early and the line was filled at 11am.  When I showed up at 3pm, the CT Director, JR Romano, told me he had gotten there at 1pm to find more cars than they could handle and gave me the sad task of turning people away.
The sign I was holding read “Sorry, Last Car, Back To High Obama Prices” and I held it because that was my job.  I wish it had just read “Sorry, Last Car, Line Full” because there were many people who were obviously living in their cars, some with children, and I felt that spiking the point was insensitive.  Unfortunately, they were unprepared for this huge turnout and we could only work with what we had.
What was truly insensitive and downright dishonest was the Democrat reaction.  A couple obnoxious college kids showed waving Obama-Biden lawn signs and saying, “It’s all a scam!”  One car I turned away had some guy who kept claiming that he was an Obama supporter and should be allowed to get some “Obama Gas” because he saw the lawn signs.
These signs were not allowed but some people felt that it was better to show up in violation of policy and make false accusations than to ask permission and not show up at all.  When Democrats campaign, truth is the first casualty, rules follow soon thereafter.  One young man who was the classic I-know-better-than-you college liberal brought a sign listing “Len Suzio’s Ethics Violations” and claimed that Len Suzio was buying votes with gas.
This was a blatant lie told by Democrats like Suzio’s challenger, Dante Bartolomeo, in an attempt to make as many false charges as possible in order to disqualify her opponent.  We have seen this before and it seems to be the Democrat Standard Operating Procedure.  They used this against John McCain, Sarah Palin, and everyone they don’t like.
The tactic is simple: File so many ethics charges against your opponent that the public thinks they are corrupt even when they are not.  The ethics charges being dismissed never get reported and the name of the target is never exonerated, but nothing can stand in the way of getting a loyal Democrat elected … not even actual ethics.
For The Record, Len Suzio and Wayne Winsley each showed up, along with Dante Bartolomeo, to an event to promote what they feel is important.  Wayne Winsley discussed Federal Policy while Len Suzio discussed State Policy.  Each discussed the solutions they saw to the high gas prices that hurt the people of Connecticut.  Len’s focus was on the Connecticut Gas Tax and trying to lower it.  He was there to raise awareness and encourage people to call their legislators. Continued

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Video Part I of Westfield Residents Candidates Forum

Videos Courtesy of Palin Smith, Videographer. Above videos 1 & 2 feature Wayne Winsley and incumbent Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro, part 3 features Dante Bartolomeo and incumbent state senator Len Suzio. Smith will be updating readers with the rest of the candidate forum in segments as they are uploaded. Please check back for updates! Thanks Palin!

Palin's video's can be seen here:

Mudslinging Drew Condemns Suzio, Ignores Presence of Lesser & Bartolomeo

Mayor Drew and Mayor Rohde sling mud campaigning on the taxpayer's dime during work hours.
     Today Democratic Meriden Mayor Michael Rohde, Middletown Mayor Dan Drew, and Candidate & Town Councilwoman for Meriden Dante Bartolomeo held a joint press conference  to denounce state Sen. Len Suzio's campaign for re-election to the 13th District state senate seat as "dirty."
Rohde went on record at the press conference to accuse the Suzio campaign of using push polls as a campaign technique, but admitted he had no proof to tie the calls to the Suzio campaign. Suzio stated the calls did not come from his campaign and he does not condone such calls. Rohde asked Suzio to in some way make it stop, however had no suggestions as to where the calls originated from. Mayor Drew joined in in the false accusations.
It seems Drew has taken to slinging mud  along side candidates even when he himself is not up for election, all at the expense of tax payers who pay his salary. Why Drew has so much time on his hands to campaign for others during the work day, when he should be devoting it to his job, is unclear. While speaking to residents last night at the Westfield Residents Association's candidate forum, Drew ,who was asked to explain upcoming referendum items only, managed to name drop & thank Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro (D) 3x during his explanation of the Mattabasset Sewer district referendum.

At 1:30 pm today Drew and Governor Malloy will campaign with DeLauro during an appearance at a re-dedication ceremony for the Arrigoni Bridge in Portland. This was not announced until this morning, and only state Democrats were invited.

     Bartolomeo issued a campaign press release stating the conference was a joint effort (text copied below).  At the press conference today, Drew made no mention of the fact that Lesser was caught on video at the $1.84 a gallon gas rally held by American's for Prosperity last week. The State Democratic Committee chair filed a complaint against Suzio for alleged vote buying with the State Elections Enforcement Commission. Suzio's challenger for the 13th District Dante Bartolomeo gave a video interview to the New Haven Register at the gas event as well, yet was not named in the complaint.
Suzio Launches inaccurate Push Poll in Effort to Deceive Voters 

WHO:     Middletown Mayor Dan Drew

   Meriden Mayor Michael Rohde

   Dante´ Bartolomeo, City Councilor and State Senate Candidate  

WHAT:    State Senator Len Suzio has stooped to dirty tricks as he attempts to hold onto his Senate seat. The Mayors of Meriden and Middletown will condemn Senator Suzio's tactics, which most recently include resorting to misleading push polling in an attempt to deceive the voters of the 13th Senate District.

WHERE:   Steps of Meriden City Hall

      142 East Main Street, Meriden, CT 06450

 WHEN:    Tuesday, October 23rd; 11:30 A.M.
Jared D. Savas
Campaign Director
Dante for State Senate
(339) 237-0635
Paid for by "Danté For State Senate"    Kieren M. Moore, Treasurer      Approved by Danté Bartolomeo

Charity News: Amazing Grace Food Challenge Thursday,Thanksgiving Collection Update

The public is invited 5 to 7 p.m. Thursday at the Fox Parish Center of St. Francis of Assisi Church, 10 Elm St., to join in on a celebration and kick-off for the 2012 Amazing Grace Food Pantry challenge according to Ron Krom, executive director of St. Vincent de Paul Middletown, the agency that oversees the food pantry on Stack Street. Soups will be made and donations of food and money to stock that pantry are being taken.
The food pantry has seen a dramatic increase in clientele with the recent recession.
photo from Middletowneye 11/2011 link here
Every year during the Thanksgiving Seasons the Middletown Kiwanis organizes a Thanksgiving basket drivewhere with The Salvation Army, where they collected baskets that contain enough food for a meal for a needy family of four complete with 10lb turkey. In the past Kiwanis has pledged over 50 baskets it collects from area organizations.
Middletown Republican Town Committee will be pledging a basket (or more) and are collecting donations and items at the next town Committee meeting, member are encouraged to bring contributions then.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Larry Eckhardt 'The Flagman'

Please take a look at this beautiful video that shows how Americans honor those that have fallen.

City 411:New Superintendent Contract in Plain English, Grievances, Settlements, & Dumbed Down Hiring Requirements

    The Middletown Insider has become aware of rumors afloat that there will soon be a special council meeting called to vote on the appointment of a new city attorney.  The city attorney position has been vacant for several years now since the retirement of Trina Solecki.   Deputy City Attorney Tim Lynch was appointed Acting City Attorney under Mayor Giuliano's administration.  When Mayor Drew took office, he decided to advertise for the position which the Personnel Office did.  There were applicants who were certified as qualified by the Personnel Department including the current Acting City Attorney.  At the June Common Council meeting, the job description for the city attorney position was changed in that the required number of years of experience was reduced from 7 to 5 years on the premise of widening the recruitment pool with no change in salary. 
    This was passed by a vote of 7 to 4 (Serra, Klattenberg, Bartolotta, Daley, Santangelo, Kasper and Berch in favor; Faulkner, Pessina, Bibisi and Salafia dissenting and Kleckowski absent).  The new job description reads:  Jurist doctorate with five years of municipal law related experience with an emphasis on employment law, labor relations experience.  It would be now assumed that the recommended candidate is going have a very solid 5 years of experience in that area.   It should be noted that the acting city attorney has indicated that he will be retiring from city service and had withdrawn his name from consideration.  Please note that there is also residency requirement attached to this position.
    At the time the job re-posted, the qualifications were still the more stringent, seven years' experience in municipal law, labor relations version. The Council, over the objections of the Republicans, led by Councilwoman Linda Salafia (if you recall, it was she who asked whether Dan Drew had someone specific in mind, as there appeared to be no other reason why anyone would lower the bar when there were three candidates who already met the higher standard) reduced the seven-year requirement (which had been inserted two years earlier at the insistence of Councilman Loffredo) to five years. Because this was done AFTER the posting was published, the posting had to be extended.
      Also, rumors are out there about the Council being asked to approve a job description for a second deputy city attorney.  This is coming from the recommendation of the Mayor's Bipartisan Task Force on Efficiency in Government, April 2012.  However, this we believe will require an appropriation as only one Deputy Attorney was budgeted.  After the interview for the City Attorney position, that Attorney Phrances Leverton Szewczyk was the choice along with the Michigan candidate and another attorney "from Middletown" (what that means is unclear, as it does not appear that it is currently a resident, but is someone who is "moving in.” The Insider reported before that Szewczyk does not appear to meet even the lowered qualifications, however, is a member of the Democratic town committee.Reader here. Readers should not that Councilman Tom Serra made on the record comments regarding  appointed Chief Patrick McMahon as not being a Middletown resident even though he bought a house here and was in town 5 nights a week- Serra objected and said on record  that McMahon wasn’t a true Middletown resident because he “didn’t worship here.” So kind how is someone from Michigan going to fit the precedent of strict enforcement of residency Serra set forth in the past?
   This report has not been officially presented to the Council, vetted by the Council or accepted by the Council; however, the Council is being (or as rumored d going to be) presented with accepting one of its recommendations that being the hiring of a second deputy city attorney.  This in effect would increase the legal staff in the office from one currently to three.  According to the report issued, the Task Force consisted of three members of the common council and 6 other members of the public plus Attorney Ryan Barry and Joseph Samolis as staff for the Task Force. 
     From the second paragraph of the final report: " Mayor Drew also asked the Task Force to make specific recommendations for consolidations and efficiencies within city government to the Finance and Government Operations Commission of the Common Council, and to make specific recommendations regarding the structure and hierarchical organization of city government."  It would seem that this was not an unbiased study of the mechanisms/ structure of the government operations.  The report indicated how much was spent on outside legal services during the past three years however, it was just a number inserted in the report without detail or explanation or history or comparison to current outside expenses or part expenses.  Oh, and no report or receipts from China... 

      There is a special council meeting scheduled for Tuesday at 7 to appropriate funds and approve a settlement agreement between the City and Local 466.  This settlement agreement will basically draw a line from which the city, the BOE and the union start fresh.  We could spend hours and hours debating the history behind the need for this settlement agreement and probably never come to a consensus on the cause.  We've a new administration now at the BOE with a new Superintendent of Schools so we hope that the atmosphere of intimidation and retaliation has ended and it seems as if it has.  However, this agreement comes with a dollar cost attached which is not insignificant, but again we will probably never be able to all completely agree as to responsibility.  Many hours were put into coming to this agreement and much discussion, it was not easy but a settlement agreement has been worked out that both sides seem to be able to work with.  Thankfully the despicable work environment that some of the men and women of 466 had to endure is over, they should be applauded for coming forward and being whistle blowers and doing what is right!
     The story broke today with headlines the Mayor Drew settled 30+ grievances and that according to him "the slate is clean." However,this is highly misleading. Basically, the City has chosen to pay out to the Union for the BOE administrations mistakes and infractions that the State Labor Board declared the BOE administration under Dr. Frechette did in fact commit. As readers should recall, Frechette refused to pay workers who were part of emergency operations at the storm shelter during last summer’s hurricane, and  communicate at all with former Mayor Giuliano when he called for an investigation into the missing $1 million dollars from the BOE budget. Read past explanations of the confusing paradigm here

Other grievances and lawsuits against the BOE still exist and have not been resolved; Drew's statement  that they all have is false. 

 Part of the deal is also that Councilwoman Hope Kasper's son in law illegal hire- Josh Berger, former real estate agent, gets to keep the job as Business Adminstrator at the BOE that was created for and given to him by a hiring committee that Kasper was on. 

     Last week the Insider published the Superintendent's contract ( here) Dr. Patricia Charles .
The legalese is not always easy to understand; so we have broken it down below and done the yearly percentage increases:

For 2012/13 Charles will receive:   Base Salary $187,000 + $15,000 to her retirement fund, $3,000 bonus for having a doctorate degree + $6,500 for mileage = $211,500.00 for the year
For 2013/14 Charles will receive:  Base Salary a minimum of $191,675 + $19,168 to her retirement fund,  + $3,000 for having a doctorate degree + ,$6,500 for mileage = $220,343 for the year
For  2014/15 Charles will receive: Base salary a minimum of $196,467 + $19,648 to her retirement fund, $3,000 for having a doctorate degree and $6,500 for mileage = $225,615 for the year.

The base salary for the last two years is tied into the  district’s highest  principals' salary.  The principals’ contract is up as of 6/30/2013, so school principal's will be negotiating a new contract; basically if they get a raise, Charles will probably get a raise too; to keep the spacing the same.  It appears Charles makes $50,000 more than the top high school principals, and because the contribution to the retirement fund for her is 10% of salary that would also go up.
     Superintendent Frechette also got a payment to a retirement fund in addition to his salary plus money for being a phd, and the mileage stipend. Charles is getting credit for the previous time that she worked for the BOE towards her retirement for medical insurance, plus the BOE are giving her back, reinstating, previously accumulated sicktime that she lost when she left her principal’s position.
Other superintendent contracts and salaries from Ct are available online, and it is a positive note that Charles chose to release the terms of her contract to the public. Superintendents in Ct are typically paid in the six figure range; Frechette's highest salary was approximately $154,000.

Common Council will also decide on upcoming Deputy Police chief position soon. Read background information &  one reader's concerns here:

Winsley: DeLauro Shows her True Colors During Debate

Press Release from Wayne Winsley for Congress:
DeLauro Shows Her True Colors During Debate
NAUGATUCK, CONN – October21: Wayne Winsley, committed candidate to represent all of the citizens of CT’s 3rd Congressional District, today released the following statement.

During the debate televised on Face the State, incumbent DeLauro says “My opponent doesn’t understand how congress works”. When asked why she voted to recognize two tablespoons  of tomato paste as equal to a serving of fruits or vegetables for our school children even though she knows the concept is ridiculous and absurd.

On Nov. 22nd 2011 Incumbent DeLauro is quoted in the New Haven Independent as saying,
“Considering pizza a vegetable and considering it paired with a side of French fries a healthy meal for children is absurd.”

Not only did DeLauro vote for the measure, she admits during the debate that she was actually the Chair of the committee that brought it to the floor. Her excuse was that the bill also contained money for food stamps and WIC. Apparently, the logic is that the parents getting the food stamps and WIC should vote for the incumbent and ignore the fact that she totally threw their children under the bus.

While I haven’t been in congress for half my life, I understand enough to know that unlike incumbent DeLauro, I will have the courage and  integrity to stand up and do the right thing for ALL of the people, not just the ones I think will  vote  for me.  Continued:

2 Meet & Greets and 1 Flash Mob Tonight In Middletown

2 Meet and Greets tonight in Middletown:
In addition to the candidate forum at the Westfield meeting house at 7:30 pm, link here:
There is a flash mob from 5-6 on Washington Street, adjacent to Home Depot. in support of Wayne Winsley
 there is also a meet and greet for new superintendent Dr. Patricia Charles at Snow Elementary tonight at 6:30 pm.

Guest Blog: Suzio Opening Night & Election Wrap Up

Suzio Headquarters Openining Night &; Election Wrap Up
Opinions expressed are those of the author, not necessarily the editors of the Insider
Part 4 of a short series of articles on Political Events in Connecticut by Tim D. Enchanter

Thursday, October 4rd, 2012 from 7-9pm near Zorba’s in Gianni’s Plaza, Meriden, CT
When I went to Len Suzio’s campaign headquarters to do some phone banking for him, it was at the invitation of Robin Goss, a local patriot who is a lady in every classy sense of the word.  It turned out to be the grand opening of the headquarters and we encouraged people coming for the party to help us out with the phones while waiting for the festivities to start.
Full Disclosure: I was the Republican Candidate for the 13th State Senate District in 2008 and became a sincere supporter of Len Suzio for that seat in 2010.  This was because I got to know Len and became convinced that he would do the job better than I would have.  In fact, I am glad that I lost in 2008 because the people deserve the best representation available.
It warmed my heart to talk to a handful of people on the phone that actually remembered me fondly from 2008 and were happy with their current State Senator.  One even said I had been “a breath of fresh air” who had prepared the way for a wonderful change.  While I fought the lumps in my throat and dried tears of joy, I went on to speak to people who were not aware of state or local politics but happy to hear from the campaign.  Of the 65 calls I made, I spoke to a dozen people.  Ten were interested, six of them being new voters who would support Len Suzio.
When the party started, I became re-acquainted with people I knew and met new rising stars.  Len Suzio shared his headquarters with others running for other offices and encouraged people to help out their campaigns as well as his.  He gave special attention to the following:
Meriden State Representative Candidates:
Arlene Dunlop running in the 82nd District
Pablo Soto running in the 83rd District
Dave Swedock running in the 84th District
Middletown State Representative Candidates:
Callie Grippo running in the 33rd District
Deborah Kleckowski, Middletown Councilwoman running in the 100th District
Since the Middletown Insider has some excellent articles on State Senator Len Suzio and the two State Representative Candidates from Middletown, I shall post links to those articles at the end of my article so that you, the reader can read these insights.
For now, I will detail what I know about State Senator Len Suzio and why I feel it is important that he be re-elected so that he can continue to serve the residents not only of the 13th State Senate District but also the entire State of Connecticut.
He has been the State Senator for Cheshire, Meriden, Middlefield, Middletown, and Rockfall for two years and has proven my previously stated feelings correct.  He has been actively available for all the residents of those towns and has demonstrated that he cares about their concerns regardless of their politics.Continued:

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Wayne Winsley for Congress: A Debate and An Endorsement

This video is Part One of the debate held on October 21, 2012 on the Face the State program:

DeLauro voted for a bill that described two tablespoons of tomato sauce as a serving of vegetables for school children!

And, a glowing and powerful endorsement of Wayne winsley from Peter Wolfgang, President, FIC Action and Executive Director, Family Institute of Connecticut:

Letter to the Editor: Kleckowski will Advocate for All

Deborah Kleckowski, Councilwoman & candidate for  100th photo credit : middletowneye 9/9/2010
To the Editor:
I urge all voters in the 100th District to elect Councilwoman Deborah Kleckowski (R) as your next State Representative in the 100th District.
     Ms. Kleckowski is a mother of young children and a long-time Middletown resident. She attended school here in Middletown and  has been a tireless and committed advocate for all of its citizens on the Middletown Common Council.
      There is no doubt in my mind that once elected, Ms. Kleckowski will work just as hard for all of us in Hartford on the state level. She is a proponent of suspending the Prisoner Early Release Program, has made public safety a cornerstone of her campaign and will work to decrease our state gas tax.
      Her opponent, Matt Lesser, has an abysmal voting record. He always votes the party line, no matter how bad that is for our state. We need change. Vote for Deborah Kleckowski.
Colin Smith, Middletown

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Debate: Winsley vs. DeLauro- 11 A.M. Sunday Oct 21, 2012 on WFSB channel 3

Wayne Winsley (3rd Congressional District candidate) and Rep. Rosa DeLauro (22 yr incumbent) to debate on Sunday, October 21st at 11 a.m. on WFSB's "Face the State."

Wayne Winsley-Listen on the Radio- MIddletown and Durham Sept 29, 2012

Middletown City Councilwoman, Deborah Kleckowski, a candidate for state rep in Connecticut's 100th district, introduced Wayne Winsley to residents in her district on a walking tour Saturday morning, Sept. 29, 2012.

Afterwards, Winsley, the Republican congressional candidate in the 3rd district, visited the Durham Fair in the afternoon.

Guest Blog: The Lesser Man

The Lesser Man
Part 3 of a short series of articles on Political Events in Connecticut by Tim D. Enchanter
Opinions expressed are those of the author, not necessarily the editors of the Insider

graphic by Insider staff as commentary
In the 100th State Assembly District, from what I have observed, it seems that Matt Lesser has declared war on all Republicans, deciding that representation should mean representing those who elect you rather than all those in the district.

This could be interpreted as laziness because it is easier to represent a smaller section of the population who share your viewpoints.
It could also be interpreted as Chicago-style politics used to establish personal power rather than serving the people.
The Middletown Insider has some interesting articles which indicate to me that they are dealing with the second interpretation:
Mayor Drew Appoints Crony as City Attorney
Your Daily Spin from the Middletown Mess: Liar Liar Pants on Fire
Vote Kleckowski, Lesser Supported Largest Tax Increase in Ct History
South Fire's Endorsement of Lesser 'Shameful'

     Some Middletown residents may wonder how they elected someone to represent their interests who now runs the town and dictates their interests. Somewhere in the world of journalism there might actually be some integrity left and an investigative reporter could actually conduct an investigation instead of just regurgitating talking points. This is why I have a list on my blog titled, “Whom Do You Trust?” For now, I can only speak to what I observed and allow the full analysis to be done by those who know more.
      Shortly before Election Day 2008, I learned a little about Matt Lesser and where he came from. I was told that the Democrat political machine chose a young man to appeal to the college students of Middletown and sent him to Arkansas for training as a Community Organizer. Upon his return, he used his new talents to convince the students at Wesleyan University to unite behind him and take over the town because they are the future, the future belongs to them, and their time has come.
     I was told how he promoted the idea of students registering to vote in the town where their college is located claiming their school residence as their primary residence. My first reaction was to ask if anyone is checking to find out if these students were also voting in their home towns via absentee ballot.
     When I raised these concerns to the FBI office in New Haven, I was told that there would have to be an investigation after Election Day but only if someone filed a complaint and could prove voter fraud. To prove it you would have to check the list of ballots cast by Absentee Ballot in one state and have someone witnessing the same voter voting in another state.

Exposing Rosa DeLauro: Elect Wayne Winsley

Rosa "The Red" DeLauro must be exposed and deposed! Wayne Winsley is the person who can beat her. This exposé of DeLauro can be read in full at Rosa DeLauro Exposed:

Only 5 years ago, Rosa DeLauro was worth a “mere” $5 Million—thanks to Washington cronyism. Today Americans struggle to recover from the worst recession since the Great Depression: lost jobs, foreclosed homes, retirement savings depleted. BUT NOT DELAURO—today HER net wealth has GROWN to an obscene $17+ MILLION! “Professional Politician” indeed! DeLauro pre-recession and DeLauro post-recession! Read on here...

Photo Credit: Rosa DeLauro Exposed

Friday, October 19, 2012

Len Suzio Interview: How CT Gas Tax Affects Gas Prices

The issues of high gas prices and future state gas tax hikes played out on East Main Street in Meriden on October 18 when State Senator Len Suzio (R-13) and his challenger, Meriden City Councilwoman, Dante Bartolomeo (D), both attended a GAS ROLLBACK event hosted by Americans For Prosperity, a national conservative political action committe.

h/t Palinsmith Video

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