Secretary of Revenue linked to Bonusgate -Taxpayers Millions spent for Partisan Political activity Millions for Defense Lawyers

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bobguzzardi's picture
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Pennsylvania Secretary of Revenue, as then State Representative and Democratic House leader, Steve Stetler, is linked to “Bonusgate”. http://www.postgazette.com/pg/09169/978326-455.stm#ixzz0J4qC00XY&D

I have blogged extensively on Bonusgate at the Conservative Reform Network blog http://crnblog.org. Search for "Bonusgate". This is a game changing investigation.

Unfortunately, it appears the Republican Attorney General, and Republican Candidate for Governor, Tom Corbett, is making the prosecution partisan and this undermines the rights of us all.

Search for "Perzel" and see the case that can be made against him.The State Republican Senate Caucus received hundreds of thousands of Bonusgate dollars for key insiders.

More than two Million dollars of The Forgotten Taxpayers' money has been spent by Rs and Ds for defense lawyers. The Senate Dem. Caucus seems free of Bonusgate taint.

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politeia's picture
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Bob - in regards to your blog and what you have written about yourself, how do you justify massive spending and the welfare/warfare state abroad while being so opposed to spending and the welfare state at home?

Me, I'm opposed to most forms of welfare and subsidies by the federal government, whether it be to corporations in the U.S. or countries abroad.

Far too often the U.S. takes care of foreigners abroad rather than taking care of what is needed at home. The U.S. bombs bridges overseas and then pays no-bid contractors to rebuild them while our bridges are falling down at home.

You ask me, if the federal government is going to spend money (and it certainly does spend money as if it is going out of style) it should do so at home before one penny goes abroad.

I'd say I tend to agree with your general philosophy at home, but not to the extent you take it. However, I also believe in that same policy abroad - and that would be the constitutional policy that the federal government in practice does not follow at home or abroad (and regardless of whether the Democrats or Republicans are in power).

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Brotherhood of Thieves

~ As we must account for every idle word, so must we account for every idle silence.

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bobguzzardi's picture
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Could you be more specific? I am not aware that this is my position. A strong national defense is not a welfare program. The common defense is a Constitutional responsibility of the central government. "from the shores of Tripoli...." it is an American tradition.

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politeia's picture
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Here is what you stated to me in an email dated 9/28/2008:

Lieberman is on board for the foreign policy and, frankly, I am very supportive of neocon position and consider myself a neocon. Commentary Magazine is one solid source of information. There is a real Jihadist threat. Sorry, Ron Paul and Libertarians are very wrong on this.

I can send the email back to you to confirm if you wish.

As I have stated on this forum before, I am a Traditional Republican.

This link describes What A Neocon Is, as you describe yourself.

Mind you, I'm not looking to get on your case. I understand that people will have different political views and I respect that fact.

I'm just curious how you square your views as a neocon with limited, fiscally conservative government. The two don't go hand-in-hand.

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Brotherhood of Thieves

~ As we must account for every idle word, so must we account for every idle silence.

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bobguzzardi's picture
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I think the email selection is accurate and remains close to what I think.

I don't agree that Constitutional Limited Government and strong National Defense are in fundamental conflict. Much of the collectivism we see seems to have been generated by Wilsonian national mobilization necessary to fight WWI. See Jonah Goldberg Liberal Fascism and numerous other analyses.

Thank you for your question, it is has stimulated my thinking and good to know someone is interested in this. Let me compose a separate blog, give me some time, and that may be better venue. In my view, we are facing great threats from hostile foreign enemies, including, most imminently, Iran's nuclear program. Nuclear Weapons controlled by religious, and very hostile, fanatical ideologues and theocrats is a threat not only to entire Middle East but to US, directly. This is off topic so let me end here and post later.

FYI I am active with Pat Toomey for Senate campaign and will post on that as well. www.toomeyforsenate.com The campaign will be centered on Constitutional Limited Government Economic Freedom Individual Autonomy and Individual Accountability. for more see www.clubforgrowth.org. Let me post separately on that as well.

Thanks, again, for you interest. I am encouraged and energized by your interest in ideas and ideals.

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politeia's picture
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I have my deeply held beliefs, and they involve having very little faith in our political system or either political party.

While I would prefer Toomey over Specter based just on Specter voting for the bailouts, establishment political candidates don't do much for me and there is a lot about Toomey I don't like.

The work I am involved in is about education and changing the way things are done while getting candidates elected who are not part of either party machine (though at this time they have to belong to one of the major parties to accomplish anything) - because there really is no difference between the two parties.

Suffice it to say, what I and others are looking to accomplish is not something that is going to happen overnight. If I see it start to take root at the end of my lifetime in 30 or 40 years I'll be satisfied.

=================

Brotherhood of Thieves

~ As we must account for every idle word, so must we account for every idle silence.

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bobguzzardi's picture
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Pat Toomey is, hardly, Establishment. As President of the Club for Growth, he challenged the Republican Establishment. There are quite a few articles on his relationship to Republican Establishment. The Pat Toomey campaign is a small beginning. The founding of our country was imperfect and I like to think we have progressed as a nation. Even if you make the Free Market argument, Free Market for Free People, that would be a help.

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Uh yeah, but really Toomey is not all that different from Sarah Palin, who challenged the corrupt Republican all-boys-club establishment in Alaska. They are both paleo-conservatives (though I think Toomey is far better on his feet than Palin), but the difference is that Toomey doesn't have a snowballs chance in south beach beating Specter (or Joe Sestak) in a general election in Pennsylvania, whereas Palin was able to muster support in blood-red Alaska.

I hated the fact that Specter only switched parties to save his political backside, but the fact remains that although Toomey probably would have cleaned Specter's clock in a GOP primary, he will not get anywhere near the support of the moderates (let alone any meaningful percentage of the Dems) to have a shot at beating Specter in a general election. Look at how badly another big Pennsylvania name (Bob Casey) crushed a hard core conservative (Santorum) in the Senate election in 2006.

Also, I agree with Politeia - except there is a TON about Toomey that I don't like (as opposed to just 'a lot').

I think that a more interesting Club for Growth race is in Florida ,where they are backing Marco Rubio to run against popular (and moderate) Republican Senator Charlie Crist in the gubernatorial GOP primary.

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bobguzzardi's picture
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Pat Toomey is not Rick Santorum or Sarah Palin or GW Bush. Rick Santorum was a Big Government Social Conservative closely tied to, like Arlen Specter, and heavily, financially supported by Philadelphia Unions who campaigned for him in Philadelphia, most particularly, John Dougherty's IBEW 98.

Given Pat Toomey's opposition to EFCA, sometimes called Card Check, another name for Union Intimidation.It is unlikely that Pat Toomey will get any money from Union Organizers,9 although Pat Toomey is popular with union workers in his former House district), Pat Toomey is not GW Bush and he is not Rick Santorum and he is not Sarah Palin. He is Reaganesque

Pat Toomey's bio is at www.toomeyforsenate.com

Not mentioned in bio is that he is a Harvard graduate, has extensive experience with financial markets (which Sen. Specter, unsuccessfully, tried to smear him with ) and ran a Sports Bar in Allentown, Lehigh Valley.

Pat Toomey's campaign with be centered on the Constitution, Limited Government, Rule of Law, Free Markets and Free Trade for Free People, Individual Autonomy and Individual Accountability.

From Club for Growth web site

Club for Growth is a national network of thousands of Americans, from all walks of life, who believe that prosperity and opportunity come through economic freedom. We work to promote public policies that promote economic growth primarily through legislative involvement, issue advocacy, research, training and educational activity.

The primary tactic of the separate Club for Growth PAC is to provide financial support from Club members to viable pro-growth candidates to Congress, particularly in Republican primaries.

Club for Growth Policy Goals:

* Making the Bush tax cuts permanent
* Death tax repeal
* Cutting and limiting government spending
* Social Security reform with personal retirement accounts
* Expanding free trade
* Legal reform to end abusive lawsuits
* Replacing the current tax code
* School choice
* Regulatory reform and deregulation

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sorry bob, but i agree with woozaleedoodle.

toomey and palin have a lot in common. they are darlings of the social conservative movement, but not nearly popular (or populist) enough to carry a major election. and yes, i dont consider running for governor in alaska a 'major election' on par with other states. its a neat accomplishment, but philly alone has several times alaska's population - only 686 thousand.

Legal reform to end abusive lawsuits

can you give some specifics on this? im a lawyer, and id like to know what toomey means by 'abusive lawsuits'.

Social Security reform with personal retirement accounts

do you really think that is going to fly with the electorate? it didnt work when the stock market was booming - why would it work now?

Regulatory reform and deregulation

im a free market freak, but this would be hugely unpopular in this current economic environment. you cant sell deregulation to a population that has been told that the lack of regulation caused wall street to collapse.

also, sorry, but how do you figure that card check is 'union intimidation'? also, seeing as how arlen specter (i think) also opposes card check, how is that an important or distinguishing issue for toomey?

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bobguzzardi's picture
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I think you may be misreading Sen. Specter on "Card Check". He co sponsored the bill in 2005 and 2007 and http://blog.aflcio.org/2009/04/07/specter-supported-employee-free-choice-before-he-was-against-it/ then opportunistically reversed himself in 2009 in face of Toomey Primary Challenge before changing parties. As you can read at this AFL-CIO site, his opportunistic maneuvering and manipulating are well known.

Union Organizers speak out on Card Check and Union Intimidation http://crnblog.org/?p=1805

Frankly, I don't think "lawsuit abuse" will be much of an issue and I have not really done much research on it. The Wall Street Journal has had a number of articles on class action excesses.

The other points seem to be "horse race" or "beauty contest" analysis. What do you think about the positions themselves regardless of whether they are winners with the electorate? The Toomey for Senate campaign seems to have a challenge to explain its positions centering on Constitutional Limited Government and Economic Freedom.

If the electorate rejects Free Market solution, then Pat Toomey will lose the election. My expectation is that as the government controls the instruments of finance through more and more detailed regulation and, through control of finance, controls the means of production itself, there may be an awakening. Let us see how the government-union takeover of GM and Chrysler plays out over next year.

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bobguzzardi's picture
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Toomey=Palin=Santorum=GWBush. All Republicans are the same and all "conservatives" are the same. Dumb and Mean. Case Closed.

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carla's picture
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I hate Sarah Palin. I hated Santorum. I distrust Toomey.

That is MY right as a voter. I do not want my rights as an American diminished. I have a right to my opinion on these folks just as much as you.

_____________________________________________________________
L'homme est né libre, et partout il est dans les fers/Man is born free, yet he is everywhere in chains.–Jean Jacques Rosseau. The Social Contract, 1762

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bobguzzardi's picture
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This is your web site. Where did I ever suggest that you did not have a right to an opinion. It is encouraging to see citizens engage in political process. There is too much apathy. May I disagree with you on Toomey?

What is your opinion of Sen. Specter and Rep. Sestak. There is considerable opinion that Rep. Sestak can defeat Sen. Specter in 2010 Democratic Primary.

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carla's picture
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It's not my website, I have a blog on the website. Arlen needs to retire is what I think. He's a Fake-o-crat
____________________________________________________________
L'homme est né libre, et partout il est dans les fers/Man is born free, yet he is everywhere in chains.–Jean Jacques Rosseau. The Social Contract, 1762

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He sure is! Problem is, I'm not that enamored with Sestak either. He's an upgrade over Curt Weldon, but that isn't saying a lot.

I really REALLY like my state representative (lawyer and Iraq war veteran) Bryan Lentz. I'd love it if Lentz took Sestak's spot in the U.S. House, which could be possible if Sestak officially runs for U.S. Senate.

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Here's the thing with Palin. Her main problem is that she is a certified idiot. She is just not very intelligent.

As stated above, she is a paleocon, and I don't see that as a bad thing. My friends used to call me a paleocon but I told them I preferred "traditional Republican".

Paleo is "old", thus old conservative, and I adhere to the old conservative views of Senator Robert Taft and Senator Barry Goldwater ("Mr. Republican" and "Mr. Conservative" respectively - and the ironic thing is old conservatives like Goldwater were pro-choice, for gay rights and against the use of religion in politics where we see the opposite today with the "new" conservatives - the neoconservatives or neocons.

As a matter of fact, Palin was pretty much against the GOP establishment before she became a national figure and was against the war in Iraq. However, once anointed a VP candidate by neocon kingpin McCain, she completely changed her tune like virtually all politicians. Santorum is the quintessential neocon and Bush adopted neocon principles in regards to foreign policy after 9/11 which lead to him adopting big government neocon principles at home and those were worst thing he could have done. 9/11 was the perfect opportunity for the neocons to roll out their nationalist, big government, interventionist, warmongering, welfare/warfare/police state agenda.

That's why I call Toomey an establishment politician. He is an opportunist who will change his tune when the winds change.

As for the term paleocon, I told my friends after a while I did not prefer it because while I am a paleocon in general principle, I have a problem with how paleocon politicians put on emphasis on their heritage in their public life. There is nothing wrong with being proud of your local or personal heritage, but I do not think it should be a part of politics. Thus, I tend to focus on the founding traditions of our country as opposed to the heritage part of being a paleocon and prefer instead to be called a traditional Republican.

=================

Brotherhood of Thieves

~ As we must account for every idle word, so must we account for every idle silence.

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Saw this portion on Barry Goldwater's Wikipedia entry:

Some of Goldwater's statements in the 1990s aggravated many social conservatives. He endorsed Democrat Karan English in an Arizona congressional race, urged Republicans to lay off Bill Clinton over the Whitewater scandal, and criticized the military's ban on homosexuals: "Everyone knows that gays have served honorably in the military since at least the time of Julius Caesar." He also said, "You don't have to be straight to be in the military; you just have to be able to shoot straight." A few years before his death he went so far as to address the right wing, "Do not associate my name with anything you do. You are extremists, and you've hurt the Republican party much more than the Democrats have."

I like Goldwater Republicans, but I'm curious who in the current Senate/House would fall into that category. From what little I know about Chuck Hagel, he seemed to fit that mold, but I don't know. Ron Paul is pretty libertarian - does that count?

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politeia's picture
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Ron Paul is the only member of Congress I would align with Goldwater - which tells you how far Republicans have strayed from their roots when you can only find one person in Washington who truly adheres to the original principles of the party. Goldwater's son and former House Rep. Barry Jr. endorsed Paul in is recent presidential bid.

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Brotherhood of Thieves

~ As we must account for every idle word, so must we account for every idle silence.

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i think constitution lawyer bruce fein also worked on the ron paul campaign. he is brilliant.

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Mind you, I don't believe in everything Taft or Goldwater said or did, and there are a few things I don't totally agree with Fein on in the two parts to this YouTube, but my agreement is on the general principle.

For instance, I don't agree with Fein that all our troops need to be behind our own borders, but having 700 military bases in 130 countries around the world is completely out of control and an enormous waste of taxpayer dollars.

I also think his reference to Nagasaki and Hiroshima was a little flippant. The use of nukes should be a last resort. The point should be that the U.S. will annihilate the military forces of any nation that attacks us. We don't need to use nukes to do that with a strong national defense.

=================

Brotherhood of Thieves

~ As we must account for every idle word, so must we account for every idle silence.

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Good video, Politeia!

I saw Fein and Vincent Bugliosi on C-Span commenting to a Congressional committee about the abuses of executive power and impeachment during the Bush administration. They were so much better than their opponents on the panel.

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BONUSGATE was the issue that I had hoped to discuss. In my opinion, BONUSGATE is the largest political corruption case in Penna. history involving more money and more people than any other corruption scheme in Penna. history as well as poisoning the electoral process itself, the keystone of representative government.

Unfortunately, it is largely under reported in Southeast Penna. Mainstream Media and I appreciate this blog as a venue provided by Carla Zambelli and Doug Muth to present BONUSGATE. There is a lot more at my blog http://crnblog.org As Tom Corbett ramps up his gubernatorial campaign, I expect we will see more headlines. Even more indictments,guilty pleas, and some inside revelations on the way Harrisburg works, not a pretty sight. Some even speculate that Republican Corbett will indict Republicans. We can hope.

My plan is to post more on Pat Toomey on a separate blog. It appears that Pat Toomey will have clear path to Republican Senate Primary 2010 and his challenge will be November 2010. It, also, appears that AG Tom Corbett is the likely Republican gubernatorial candidate having won statewide, the only Republican to do so, in a very bad year for Republicans.

The really interesting contests will be, in my opinion, be Sestak v. Specter and the Democrats Gubernatorial contests. Dan Onorato and Jack Wagner are formidable as will Southeast Penna Tom Knox.

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Dude, relax. Often these threads go into slightly different topics. It is no big deal.

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Thanks for reading and taking the time to respond. Few do and I appreciate it the engagement. Agreement would be better, though. Smiling

I wanted to refocus on BONUSGATE. I remember in 2005 when a Supreme Court Justice was not retained and another received fewest retention votes since retention elections were instituted in 1969 (I think) and the southeast was completely unaware of the electoral tsunami which set stage for 2006 upheaval when many incumbent House members either retired or resigned. BONUSGATE can have that effect. Of course, as we have noticed in recent budget, the players have changed and, in small and nondramatic ways ( or is it my hope influencing my imagination) positive changes in Open Records and Budget debate.

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Woozaleedoodle's picture
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As a free market freak (love ChickenSandwich's term for that), you shouldn't necessarily WANT agreement. I love competing views and positions, and I get downright scared when everyone chants in unison. It is creepy!

One of the cool things about this blog is that superstrong personalities, like Carla and Politeia and Chips and ChickenSandwich, and RadnorLawyer, can come on here and share their views which occasionally differ greatly.

This type of 'engagement' is one of the things that makes this blog great (and hats off to Doug Muth for making this all possible!).

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The Free Market is antidote to Group Think. James Surowiecki makes the point in "Wisdom of Crowds" http://www.amazon.com/Wisdom-Crowds-James-Surowiecki/dp/0385721706/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1245874945&sr=1-1

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