Monthly Archives: December 2012

The old one–two developer punch

Loudoun Republican Supervisor (but I repeat myself) Shawn Williams (R-Broad Run) certainly has no shortage of chutzpah when it comes to carrying water for the commercial developers who bankrolled his election campaign.

This week he sent out another one of his “newsletters” bemoaning the terrible fact that “Loudoun’s residential-commercial imbalance has led to one of the highest property taxes south of the Mason-Dixon Line.”

Let us parse this statement. Continue reading

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So much easier to govern without those annoying citizens getting in the way

Our very efficient all-Republican Loudoun Board of Supervisors has found that it gets so much done, it doesn’t need to have so many meetings, above all so many of those boring and annoying sessions where they have to listen to the citizens (who, unlike the commercial developers who gave them $500,000 in campaign contributions, don’t even buy them drinks at Tuskie’s or spring for junkets to Germany).

After canceling its scheduled meeting for December 18, the Board also announced (see full text below) it will be holding meetings next year on a much reduced schedule — and avoiding altogether that awkward business of first having to listen to citizens in a public comment session, then vote on a possibly unpopular matter right afterwards. Now the Board plans to shoot first and ask questions later: it will hold business meetings where votes are taken only twice a month, on the first and third Wednesdays of each month at 4 p.m., and have public input beginning at 6 p.m. Continue reading

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Why bother with facts

Earlier this year, with virtually no effort to study the problem or get the facts, the Loudoun Board of Supervisors abolished the county’s Drug Court, which provided alternative sentencing and treatment for nonviolent drug offenders.

It was a move sadly typical of the all-Republican Board that swept into office last January — its willy-nilly spending priorities have been driven by throwing huge amounts of money at politically favored pet projects, then scrambling to find cuts somewhere else in programs that don’t have a powerful constituency among the Loudoun Republican apparatchiks who put them in office. (The Board claimed the drug court was not “cost effective” at $280,000 a year — but did not even bother to compare that to the cost of imprisoning each offender sent to jail instead — which is $25,000 per year in Virginia.)

Today’s New York Times has an interesting article on the subject which notes that conservative scholars and politicians on a national level have realized it is simply madness to lock up nonviolent drug offenders; Continue reading

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There’s always another $187,000 for the Lyme loonies

Still looking for ways to throw hundreds of thousands of your tax dollars down the drain to appease the pseudo-scientific local GOP claque that believes Lyme disease is an “epidemic” (it is not) and a “chronic” ailment (it is not) requiring “special” treatment by practitioners whom the medical establishment regards as dangerous quacks (they are), your all-Republican Board of Supervisors was at it again last week, tossing around the idea of spending $187,000 to hire a full-time county employee for two years to direct the pseudo-scientific and useless spraying of dangerous and useless pesticides on county parks. Hooray!

The one scientifically knowledgeable person in this whole ludicrous and insane business has been the county’s public health officer, Dr. Goodfriend, who noted in his comments to the Board last week that spraying parks is rather pointless in trying to reduce the transmission of Lyme disease since “most people get it on their own property.” This comment was met by absolute, goofy silence from our elected officials who already voted earlier this year to spend $50,000 a year hosing down the parks with chemical pesticides.

(Supervisor Ken “Ken” Reid, after all, showing his keen understanding of entomology, pledged during the election last year to “spearhead” a campaign to “wipe out” ticks in Loudoun County.) Continue reading

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Ken issues yet another clarification

Loudoun Supervisor Ken “Ken” Reid (R-Leesburg) has issued another clarification to explain whose fault it was that he labeled as “terrorists” the people who object to having religious displays of two officially selected state-sponsored religions (guess which two!) on the Loudoun Courthouse grounds.

First “Ken” of course blamed the media (for accurately quoting him making an outrageous statement intended by him in the first place to get himself on television, his major pastime).

Then, when he got on television, he issued one of the standard politician’s “if I possibly offended anyone . . .”  non-apology apologies, explaining that he did not think anyone would possibly think that by calling someone a “terrorist” he “meant to disparage anyone.”

Now he explains it’s all the Democrats’ fault for trying to exploit the issue and refusing to accept his “apology”; as he lucidly elaborated in an e-mail to the media (or what’s left of it around here):

 “It’s regrettable … the Loudoun County Democratic Committee are unwilling to accept my apology for the use of the word in the Washington Times article and are choosing to use this incident to make political hay.”

This of course opens a great realm of possibilities for reasonable political dialogue. We can all start saying, “Ken Reid is a devil worshiping bunny murdering pervert,” and then insist that he not say anything about it so long as we “apologize” afterwards. Continue reading