Success comes to those individuals who seek the assistance of others because they realize that they are not always right and they do not have all the answers. On the other hand, “Know it all’s” are prone to failure.
THE MOSQUE IS TOO CLOSE
If a Muslim were uncommitted to the teachings of the Qur’an and the Hadith, and was committed to this nation, then surely the building of an Islamic Center would be no different than the building of a Church or Synagogue.
Reality check — we have seen the work of committed Muslims. No Muslim country permits Christians or Jews to construct Centers, Synagogues or Churches. Only Islam has a social-political framework that mandates forced submission to Allah and his prophet by any means possible. Islam should not be viewed as just another religion, and Allah should not be viewed as being the same God of the Jews and Christians.
The number of Muslims in America is growing (now 9 million), due to immigration (legal and illegal), high birth rate, and prison converts (view Muslim Demographics online to understand the problem). Defend the Constitution, follow the money, reclaim Dearborn, Michigan. Muslims need to become committed Americans, and we all need the Prince of Peace Jesus. 9/11 is their bold declaration of victory and intent to conquer. The mosque is too close — on purpose.
Pastor Donald Moore
We have a Conservative primary on September 14. Absentee ballots have already been sent. There is only one contest — the Governor’s race pitting Rick Lazio against Ralph Lorigo.
For those of you who support Carl Paladino, who is not on the Conservative primary ballot, let me share a conversation I had with him at the Republican reception on Thursday, August 26 at the Hillside. When I said “I might write in your name on my absentee ballot,” Paladino said “No – vote for Ralph Lorigo.” Paladino said Lorigo is an ally.
Most of you know Lazio as a “liberal” Republican. For those of you who don’t know Ralph Lorigo — he is a life long Conservative and has served as the Erie County Conservative Chairman since 1994. You can go to his web site at http://www.lorigoforgovernor.com/ where he states he is “not a stand in or straw man for anyone.” However, he also says that he likes and admires Paladino.
I think a primary vote for Lorigo gives us the best chance of getting the required 50,000 votes in the general election if Lazio loses the GOP primary. If you are in doubt, my best advice, as always, is vote for the Conservative.
Tony Tantillo, Chairman
New Paltz Conservative Party
ATTACKS SERVE NO ONE
On April 29, 2010, a letter written by me appeared in Woodstock Times. Perhaps in poor judgment I signed the letter using a pseudonym, Jim Charles. I did so to disassociate my personal comments from reflecting on the Ethics Board of which I was a member of at that time. My actions violated a rule of Woodstock Times which I was unaware of, and that’s no excuse, but in no way violated any civil law, criminal law or Town regulation. In any event, as a result of my using a pseudonym, I later choose to resign from the Ethics Board to isolate my personal comments from the Ethics Board.
In my life, nor within my letter of April 29, 2010, I have never called anyone a bigot. The exact quote of what I had written was “The persistence in the objection to the RUPCO development appears to be stemmed in bigotry, either economic or racial, which I find hard from being consistent with the good natured and caring people of Woodstock who I am fortunate to know.” For whatever reason, my comment has been claimed to me directed specifically at Robin Segal by her. That allegation is completely false.
About four months later, on August 19, 2010, I had again written a letter to Woodstock Times in praise and support of the good work of both Ulster Savings Bank and RUPCO for the many positive efforts both have made to better our community and to promote home ownership and affordable housing. The reason for my letter was in response to a letter from the prior week appearing in Woodstock Times whereby someone in opposition to RUPCO took exception to a grant made by Ulster Savings Bank to RUPCO in support of RUPCO’s ongoing work and dedication to housing preservation and enabling homeownership.
From here, I can only guess that Ms. Segal read the letter, noticed that I had sent it, and could see nothing to find negative about my comments about Ulster Savings Bank, RUPCO, or affordable housing. Her letter appearing in Woodstock Times on August 26, 2010, initially spoke of all of her excellence in her profession and to dispel any thoughts that she is a negative person based on her position on RUPCO and the litigation she has brought about against the Town, but then proceeded to result in what I consider a negative ad hominem attack against me and my profession.
Ms. Segal’s comments were false, and, in my opinion, defamatory, and libelous. I guess as a children’s book writer there may be some type of special fairy tale license she may believe she has and it causes me to wonder about everything else she writes. The false actions alleged by Ms. Segal include purporting my criminal action where she states “in his professional life, identifies ‘non-performing’ mortgages, meaning people whose properties are headed for foreclosure, and tips off banks and other potential ‘investors’ to these ‘opportunities.’” Under Federal law, no one is permitted to act in that fashion. I also know of no lender who needs to be tipped off about properties in their portfolio heading for foreclosure. The first public notice of a foreclosure is when a lender files a lis pendens in a Court of jurisdiction against the property owner in default. Prior to that time all communication about a foreclosure is of a confidential nature between lender and the borrower.
I going to go out on a limb here, but as much as I had violated Woodstock Times “The Feedback rules” a few months ago when I used a pseudonym (Rule No. 2), I would think Ms. Segal violated Rule Nos. 4 & 5 relating to malicious untrue writing and Ad Hominem attacks.
For the record, I have an unblemished career of over 40 years in real estate and banking. My company provides asset management services and consultation to banks in the New York Metro and national market. For over 40 years, I have been a licensed real estate broker. In addition, I am a real estate portfolio property manager, and a certified appraiser. I also do work as a foreclosure consultant and assist home owners faced with foreclosure and provide counseling in matters relating to credit, short sales agreements, loan modifications and certiorari proceedings. A good portion of this work is pro bono. Anyone who wants more information about what my company does can feel free to contact me at anytime.
Perhaps that may have been a better path than wasting time by negatively attacking me with lies. That serves no one and of that, I’m positive!
WATCH FOR ROADSIDE ANIMALS
We are close to Autumn, so squirrels and others are out and about searching for sufficient storable food to get them through the winter. As their habitat shrinks — because of us over-populous and land-greedy humans, our fellow mammals have to range farther and wider to find enough food. This means that they have to cross more of our horribly dangerous roads.
Even a kind-hearted and cautious driver cannot always avoid killing one of the road-crossing animals. Sometimes, the animal misjudges the speed of a car or just panics. If an animal blunders out in front of you at the last moment, you can be forgiven for the ensuing death. There are, however, many tragedies that need not occur, if only we would be more vigilant and caring.
Try to notice more when you are driving, particularly at the edges of winding roads that have vegetation on the sides. Simply glance periodically at the shoulder of the roads as you drive, and if you notice movement, slow down a bit, the better to be able to stop if someone steps out imprudently.
I am not asking you to kill your own family or another driver in a screeching halt. Simply pay more attention to the roadsides around you.
Have some empathy. Put yourself in the animals’ place, as they search desperately to find food and avoid death at the same time. Imagine yourself in that position, in that constant danger of being run over.
On a stretch of Wittenberg Road recently, where the posted limit is 35, I passed six sad corpses. Considering that even though I was driving at the limit, several reckless lawbreakers passed me over the double-yellow line — no wonder so many died.
Every animal has a family, just as you do. Some of the tragedies we see by the side of the road have left children behind, perhaps to starve because they did not make it home. We should consider the lives of every living being to be as precious as our own, and learn to drive cautiously for everyone’s sake.
And could we please see less tail-gating out there? That is such an avoidable menace! If we all kept sufficient space between our cars, particularly when traveling faster than 25 mph, there would be less deaths of people and other animals.
SMALL NOT FOR PROFITS IN DANGER OF LOSING STATUS
Spread the word: the deadline has been extended to October 15 for nonprofits to file their 990s. Please join the State Association network of the National Council of Nonprofits, the IRS, and others to spread the word — to small nonprofits in particular — that they need to file with the IRS annually. Most urgently, many small nonprofits will lose their tax-exempt status if they have not filed in the past three years and fail to file by October 15 of this year. The IRS has announced a one-time relief program for nonprofits required to file the 990-N or 990-EZ that missed their deadline earlier this year.
This and further information from the National Council of NonProfits at:
The one-time relief program will not help organizations required to file the Form 990 or Form 990-PF. Their tax-exempt status will be automatically revoked if they fail to file for three consecutive years.
Guidance from Guidestar.org explains what you need to know about revocation of tax-exempt status.
There’s an Electronic Filing Tool: Organizations with gross revenue under $100,000 may file their IRS Form 990-EZ electronically at no charge through the Urban Institute’s eFile program.
I downloaded a list available from the IRS of all New York Not for Profits who have not yet filed and there are a number of small organizations whose names begin with Woodstock so please check and file to comply and avoid having to go through the whole application process again.
WHAT’S REALLY HAPPENING
I was really disappointed by your front page piece in last week’s edition (Let the Circle be Unbroken). The police department and the kids in town are not “adversarial groups.” Judging from the article, the only complaints aired at the meeting seemed like plain old insults. One officer, slurred for not smiling enough, was told “when you got the job they removed the hormone that produces emotion!” How disrespectful. This is news? One hopes that your use of the word “kops,” i.e.: Keystone Kops, was an unintended gaffe. Perhaps Woodstock Times could produce a legitimately newsworthy article by placing a reporter in the middle of town two weekends in a row to document the insanity. Or perhaps an editorial urging the Woodstock Town Board to encourage increased patrolling in problem areas. Your article did little more than to enable problem behavior while ignoring our real challenges. In the past 72 hours alone, I have witnessed from my porch vandalism, fighting, three cases of public urination during the day and a drunken kid collapsed in my bushes. He was covered in vomit. This is not an “us versus them,” cops versus teens scenario.
Woodstock has the most even handed, well balanced police department in Ulster County. I applaud John Amoroso and our other officers for participating in your forum and for doing their best to preserve some semblance of a quality of life for my neighbors and me. I just wish that your paper would offer greater coverage of what’s really happening in the village.
SCARECROW TRILOGY PART 2
Jesus stares at the ceiling.
Its been a long week, but soon the doors will open
And there, in the frozen distance, in a tiny garden, hangs another Christ
But who is he, where did he come from?
And who did he piss off to get hung like that?
I thought I had it bad, Jesus thinks, at least I have inside work for the winter.
Why did they do this to my brother?
Did he make the same mistakes I did?
Did he speak of love right out loud?
And what’s with the clothes? Did they crucify him on casual Friday?
Soon the doors will open
THE WHALE’S TAIL
America’s fascination with the new and the shiny is seen by some as a profound cultural disease. It might quell our mania if the Mississippi could, even for a day, be the Yangtze; if the brown Hudson could be the timeless Ganges; if the Esopus Creek could be a not yet traveled tiny tributary in the dark green Amazon. We’re such compulsive doers. Both old age and innocence seem...primeval. ‘Work is company’, they say in Newfoundland — but it wasn’t compulsive, time-table work. Slow as a whale’s tail. They — the inshore-fishermen — liked the deep, uncanny, sweet, internal music that comes from peace of mind and solitude.
VOICE FEST SAYS THANKS
It is said that a place where two waterways meet is sacred ground — and here, between the foothills of Mount Tremper and the Mighty Esopus, we created something unique and magical, and the trees and mountains and creatures in the woods and rocks and water and the people who live here came together, and were united by this great primal vibration we call voice, and united in song.
We are overjoyed with our first annual “The Phoenicia Festival of the Voice.” We want to thank all of your readers who attended, and invite all to attend our Festival next August.
We had extraordinary artists give magnificent performances under gorgeous skies (for two of the three days) — and all to great acclaim. Our area’s arts offerings are truly excellent and diverse and the collaborative marketing effort by all of us all over the County is an attraction for many who do not live here.
And, we thank the many volunteers, of all ages, both in the several months leading up to the festival, and during the weekend, who unselfishly gave of their time, their enthusiasm and their knowledge, to help us orchestrate this phenomenal event.
We thank you all profoundly.
Maria Todaro, Kerry Henderson, Louis Otey, Founders
SUPPORT FOR JOE
A new candidate in the running for Library Board Trustee is Joe Nicholson. I want to add a voice of support for him, who I know to be a stand up guy, one of the few left who “gets it” when this town seems to be adrift. As someone who is personally acquainted with Joe, I am able to tell you he, at the very least, is very vocal in his opinions and driven by a strong will in a positive direction. He seems particularly fearless in his dealings around town and goes about discussing each issue with an intelligent and thoughtful air. He has had past experience as a partner in a law firm and is no stranger to political jargon or bullying, and knows how to effectively deal with both, from what I have seen.
THANKS TO VILLAGE SHOP OWNERS
Kids, cops, town board folk who
have gathered on the Green
on Saturday nights.
Best of all, shop owners too
have stayed open
for the likes of me and you.
Music abounds; next up this Saturday night.
Come out in the dark, it won’t be a fright!
Concerts for Kids are helping to nourish and enhance
the good things that Village Life has to offer.
Please join in the fun and, while there, visit the many shops
that are open to add more light to the night.
I HAVE A NIGHTMARE
Glenn Beck is my nightmare. As I watched him stand in the place where Martin Luther King stood years ago, and declare our nation a Christian Nation, I thought, “here we go again” — having to defend the First Amendment: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”
Now, to be clear, I accept Christianity as a religion, just as I accept Judaism, Buddhism, Hinduism, Muslim, Native American, (the one that should get first priority if we were to be a “Religious Nation”), and all other religions. I thought that getting into the various types of Christianity (38,000 sects) would be hard, but then, it became easy when I discovered that Beck was a Mormon. I had to conclude that the Christian Nation he referred to was Mormon, so I looked into some of the Mormon beliefs.
Did you know that Mormons believe that God created multiple worlds and each world has its own God? That Mormons believe that we are only subject to our God and if we obtain the highest level of heaven we can become gods ourselves? (Hmm. I wouldn’t mind being God of a Universe. That would be a trip.)
Also, Mormon marriages are considered eternal. If a husband and wife are sealed together in the temple, they can be together on into the celestial kingdom. The church does have a process for annulment and sees divorce as an “unfortunately” necessary evil. I can buy that — unless of course, you married and divorced a multi-millionaire, in which case it would be a “fortunately” necessary evil — but I digress.
Here’s my point. If Beck, Limbaugh and Gingrich want to tear our country apart with religious wars inside our country, I’m willing to give up my political stance to keep our nation from another civil war. So here’s my offer. I am going to suggest that we break the “party” barrier, and come together against a possible takeover of our fundamental rights as a Democratic Republic nation — built on the foundation of the Constitution.
I will consider voting for either and any party candidate that does not stand for dividing our country by race, religion and corporate loyalty; any candidate that does not accept money from corporations that say that the Obama tax cuts are going to hurt people that are struggling. Repealing the tax cuts for the wealthy, are not going to affect only the wealthy. So if anyone running sticks to their policy, provided that they have a policy, I will consider voting for them, no matter which party. Right now most of the Republican candidates do not look acceptable, but if they break from the propaganda, and show me some facts, I’m open.
Let’s remember: United we Stand, divided we fall. Let’s come together and give some thought to the bought and paid for propaganda. It may mean resorting to some reading, and sharing facts with friends and family, but what the heck, the price of losing is just too deep. It’s getting serious folks. Time to remember that Democracy is not a spectator sport.
WOODSTOCK’S LIBRARY BUDGET
For those who did not have an opportunity to review the Library’s budget, here are 10 line items taken directly from the Library’s website entitled: “Proposed 2011 Budget with details” — 1-Total Budget = $531,489.28; 2-Salary and Benefits =$341,918.78 (63.3% of Total Budget, Number of employees is not detailed in budget); 3-“Connectivity” (Internet) = $4,468.00 (technology not detailed); 4-“Professional Fees”= $12,750 (specifics not detailed); 5-“Contingency” = $8,500 (your guess is as good as mine);6- Contracts w/other Lib = $8,600; 7-Telephone = $2,500 (Carrier and plan Not detailed);
8-“Other Equipment” (74.430b) = $7,500 (No specifics detailed); 9 “Compensated Absences” = $17,000 (Part of Benefits); 10- Medical Insurance = “$55,000 (Part of Benefits).
NOT THE LAST WORD
Regardless of the outcome of the Library Board election, I extend my heartfelt thanks to the many folks who stepped up to support me with words of encouragement and counsel. Among the many lessons learned in the last few weeks: Until you try it, campaigning remains a mysterious exercise for most people — and generally compels the question “Why?” To answer that, I would hardly do better than to quote Alf Evers, one of the many great Woodstockers whose time came and went before I could meet him, but whose generosity of spirit and wise presence can be found throughout our community: “The opening of the...library...reflected a conviction that the people of a democracy must be able to read and must have access to information...” With this in mind I will continue be engaged, whether on the Library Board otherwise.
TAKE THE “HELP” SIGN DOWN! In my feedback letter of a few weeks ago, I noted how important it is for Woodstock to undertake a new marketing campaign to promote the town and its merchants. So it is no wonder why my heart sank when I saw the single word “HELP” on the large sign now greeting everyone who enters Woodstock. Local residents are aware of the plight of the Woodstock Playhouse and realize the sign is a plea for funds to help the theater. But to visitors, the very individuals we need to attract to ensure economic growth, the sign may be misconstrued as reflecting the entire town’s cry for help. And if that is the message they perceive, in their minds it becomes the reality.
The theater must take the “HELP” sign down. Replace it with a positive message of greetings. We need to embrace guests to our town and provide them with a positive experience which begins at our very doorstep. They must become our ambassadors of good will, enticing other visitors to come and feel the Woodstock Spirit.
THE TRUE SPIRIT
The true community spirit displayed on Volunteers Day was delightful. Colunteers from every agency in Woodstock came together to either help out and/or serve each other and celebrate the resourceful community spirit that prevails in Woodstock. It was a vibrant tribute to all of the members of the agencies represented, to show gratitude for their unfailing willingness to be part of what makes the town so great. They say ‘yes’ and that is what matters. The ‘guest of honor’ buttons were a lovely touch and made all feel so welcome and special. Blessings on all of you.
Linda Schwab-Edmundson, St. John’s Food Pantry
RESPECT FOR NICHOLSON
I fully support Joe Nicholson and his ideas and perspectives as being very good for Woodstock. His recent letters in Woodstock Times and his political positions taken and expressed before the town board have been vital and energizing. His knowledge of intellectual properties law gives him a special view of creative art and its struggle, something we, as artists, may find useful and inspiring. Thus, Joe Nicholson, as a positive force and a fine human being, has my respect, and, I hope, a position on the library board or on the town board, or as an advisor the world of the creative arts, and that Woodstock realizes this man has a lot to share and wants to give his talents to sincerely benefit the town of Woodstock.