Friday, January 30, 2009


Concealed Weapon Laws are
Proven to Reduce Crime

While I am pleased that my Republicans Against Domestic Violence campaign succeeded in getting the issue back on the County Council agenda here in Montgomery County, I am disappointed that important changes in the law are not being considered.

I have quite a list, but one of those I'd like to talk about today is a new law that would give women the right to carry a concealed firearm.

This right, of course, is already theirs. It is guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution. Of course, as you know, that right has been infringed upon by liberal governments across this country.

But I'd like to speak to not only those of you who - like me - believe in our right to bear arms, but also to those of you who favor strict gun control.

I believe we can give women the right to carry a concealed weapon and have an increase in public safety, and a decrease in violent crime against women. Is this new protection needed?, you might ask.

The answer is, Yes!

A series of horrific, violent attacks and sexual assaults against women in the county and state just recently vindicate the need for just such a law.

This month, at The Cheesecake Factory in White Flint Mall, a woman was sexually assaulted in the ladies room by a restaurant employee.

Recently, a 34-year-old Laurel woman was shot twice in the face. She had a protective order against the man who shot her.

And just two weeks ago, another Laurel woman, 21, was abducted and raped by 3 men in a red SUV. She was abducted in Olde Towne Gaithersburg, which is known as a high-crime area. The men dropped her off in the 7200 block of Muncaster Road.

All of these crimes were monstrous. And, clearly, current law was insufficient to protect these 3 women.

Unlike our elected officials, I am not content to let the status quo continue. With violent crime on the increase, and sure to worsen as the economy does, women need to have the right to defend themselves.

A concealed firearm could have made a huge difference in many cases, including the three above.

Any law-abiding woman over the age of 18 should have the right to carry a concealed weapon. With the proper training and the right handgun, women who would like this option would now have a formidable line of defense against the vile villains and domestic abusers who would do them harm.

And since women are rarely the perpetrators of gun violence, this is one new law that gun control activists cannot justifiably oppose.

While I hope that Democrats in Annapolis will reverse their shameful course and pass new domestic violence laws this year, the ones on the drawing board are simply insufficient. The law to seize all firearms hardly guarantees that a domestic abuser would not obtain a firearm illegally.

Let's put forward a bolder, proactive agenda on domestic violence. One that empowers women, and prevents crime before it is committed. That has to be the goal in the future if we are going to make a difference.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

A Exclusive

The Washington Post has once again failed to disclose a financial conflict of interest in yesterday's editorial on "free" trade. While asking President Obama and the Congress to avoid adding new protections to our own American steel industry, Post editors conveniently left out an important fact:

Washington Post Company Director Warren Buffett owns 4% of POSCO, a massive South Korean steel maker.

Here's a quote from CNBC for you:

"The Oracle of Omaha, as Buffett is known, stands to make a tidy profit on his investment which he bought for $572 million. The stake was worth 1.23 trillion won ($1.31 billion) as of its Wednesday's closing share price."

And all at the expense of our own American steelworkers... isn't that patriotic?

As you now know, the Post continues to have a major disclosure problem. The Post continues to have major conflict of interest problems. (The editorial below the one on steel, on environmental issues, promotes positions that stand to benefit Post business associates such as General Electric among others).

Finally, just think about it: The Washington Post is favoring its own financial interest in South Korean steel, at the expense of American workers and what little is left of our heavy industry. That is shameful. Perhaps it's time President Obama takes action on trade issues, as he promised - he can start with his own newspaper, the pro-South Korean steel Washington Post.

Sunday, January 25, 2009


The water main break on Ridgefield has been stopped, but there is a deep crater in the middle of the road. Only a small tripod has been placed over it, with yellow tape. On Friday, there was a flashing light in front of this to warn approaching vehicles. By last evening, that lamp had been removed or stolen. This has made for a dangerous situation; approach with caution. I assume WSSC will be back Monday to complete the job.

Friday, January 23, 2009

THAT DID IT Once Again
Generates Not Just Words, But

13 hours after my previous post on the water main break appeared online (and 72 hours after the main broke, causing dangerous, icy road conditions), a WSSC crew arrived on the scene to finally stop the leak. I hope to have an update on the repairs and street conditions after I pass by there later today. It appeared that the actual break was further up the hill, while the water was bursting out at the intersection below. I would suggest you still approach the intersection with caution, as I don't know if the mess is cleaned up yet, and it is currently below freezing.

Thursday, January 22, 2009


Monopoly Utility Lets Broken Bethesda
Water Main Run for 2 Days and Counting

A Exclusive!!!

And they say they're going to charge us an additional $20 a month? Monopoly water utility WSSC has apparently taken its phones off the hook, as residents are unable to report a water main break at the intersection of Ridgefield Road and Kirkwood in Bethesda.

Avoid this intersection! I have been on the scene myself yesterday and Tuesday. By today, the entire area around the intersection has a heavy coating of ice and black ice on it. Dodging cars and using my flashlight, I located two little fountains shooting up. They are only a few inches in height - one at the curb by the 4th Presbyterian Church, and the other in the middle of the road.

These appeared today, and the road has begun to crack and buckle in places. Certainly, nearby residents called this in on Tuesday. I tried to call myself last night...

The WSSC "emergency" number put me on hold for 22 minutes. They never answered.

I hung up and tried again. The same thing happened again.

Ladies and gentlemen, it appears that the WSSC has taken its phones off the hook.

Someone could be killed if a car goes out of control on that ice. Not to mention that nearby homes could be flooded if this water main break continues to be ignored by the WSSC.

It's outrageous.

I'll check it out again today, and report back. But this is what happens when our county government fails to exercise leadership in its oversight of the WSSC, and what happens when we have no competition or accountability in our utilities.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009


Shameful Attempt Continues;
Washington Post Blacks Out Coverage
(So Far) of January 15 Public Hearing

10 degrees was an appropriate temperature for a public hearing where Montgomery County councilmembers Phil Andrews and Duchy Trachtenberg continued their cold approach to compensation for our county police officers.

As regular readers remember, county officials began this bizarre quest to deny disabled officers retirement benefits a few months back. The public was growing more outraged by the minute about the fiscal disaster our county executive and council had mismanaged their way into. Desperate for a sideshow to divert attention, Ike Leggett and some of the councilmembers invented a "scandal," suggesting that a majority of retiring police officers were defrauding taxpayers by improperly receiving disability benefits.

Other than two high profile cases being investigated at the federal level - and neither of those has yet reached the legal threshold to win a fraud case - not a single shred of evidence has been presented by Mr. Leggett, Mr. Andrews, or Ms. Trachtenberg.

Yet at last Thursday night's hearing, Andrews and Trachtenberg not only weren't apologizing for this shameless smear against Montgomery's finest, but were continuing to make disparaging remarks.

When I arrived at the council building, all nearby street parking was filled with county police cruisers. This impressive display was matched by the crowded hallway and hearing room filled with officers, many in uniform.

Those of us testifying in support of our county police were limited to just 3 minutes. Then councilmembers not only babbled on and on themselves, but also chose to only call upon the speakers who supported their attempt to deny disability benefits to retiring disabled officers.

Councilmember Valerie Ervin tried to suggest I did not know that the executive negotiates with the unions, not the council. I knew that, and did not suggest otherwise in my speech - but of course, as a citizen I am not allowed to rebut the endless jabbering of our councilmembers. In fact, my speech was correct - the executive reaches the agreement, BUT, the council MUST approve the agreement by appropriating the funds. So it is Ms. Ervin who needs a civics lesson, not me.

In short, the council "signed" these labor agreements and is trying to get out of this and other union deals for political reasons.

The attempt to deny benefits to disabled police officers is a new low in Montgomery County politics. It is shameful. It is outrageous.

Yet this attack on our officers, who risk their lives each day to protect the citizens of Montgomery County, was not condemned by the remaining councilmembers. Many appear to be hedging their bets. Marc Elrich is on both sides of the issue at once; hardly the hallmark of strong leadership. Other councilmembers had little or nothing to say.

As I said in my speech, after our elected officials are done lashing out at schoolchildren, senior citizens, volunteer firefighters, Upcounty residents, and disabled cops, I shudder to think who else is on their list of scapegoats? Girl Scouts? Puppies?

Maybe you can catch this hearing on Channel 6 when it is replayed.

Don't miss the end - kudos to Gino Renne for saying what others might have liked to all evening. Lashing out at the offending councilmembers. And punching the microphone button off with panache, standing up, putting his coat on, and leaving while exchanging words with Andrews.

Like the rest of us there to support our county police, you had to be passionate about this issue to come out on a brutally cold night like this.

What I found most despicable of all, was the suggestions dropped all evening by Andrews and Trachtenberg. Such as the claim which gave the impression that there is a sizeable number of convicted felons on our police force. Or Trachtenberg's suggestion that officers would not respond to emergencies if this immoral legislation is passed by the council. Such outright false statements are outrageous, out of bounds, and truly disgusting; both councilmembers owe our police officers an immediate apology (at least).

I have no clue how our elected officials can launch such a crusade against the men and women of our police department.

But I and many, many others know one thing for sure: we won't let this happen, and this legislation must and will be defeated. As I always say regarding compensation for our police officers and firefighters: as Dan Marino said in the old glove commercials, you need to "take care of the hands that take care of you."

Friday, January 16, 2009


I will report on the County Council hearing last night (regarding the county's shameless attempt to make it more difficult for disabled police officers to receive disability compensation).

Also, a domestic violence story in Laurel that is directly related to the law that will come before the General Assembly this session.

Thursday, January 15, 2009


Transit Officials Warn Disabled:
"Stay Home!!"

The outrages continue as the inauguration approaches. Now Metro officials are saying disabled Americans should not try to attend the events. They are making no special arrangements to accomodate the disabled, in direct violation of the Americans With Disabilities Act. Even worse, MetroAccess service for the disabled will be canceled in areas closed for the ceremonies, according to The Washington Post. It's outrageous. I had expected President-elect Barack Obama to intercede on behalf of the disabled, but there has been no such announcement yet.

Sunday, January 11, 2009


My favorite story from the Neutron plant disaster: According to a document I've examined, a Neutron executive was making a business trip to another nuclear facility. When he entered the facility, his suit set off all of the alarms! The equipment detected radioactive material on his suit. That's when you know your plant has problems!

Friday, January 09, 2009


Former Cobalt-60 Site May Be
Making Residents Sick


WJLA 7 has reported a suspicious incidence of rare cancers diagnosed in several Poolesville residents who live on the same street. This is again a case of previous concerns I have raised gaining new credibility with new developments.

There is one major part that I was not aware of, and no one else I've spoken to in the last 48 hours is either: a defunct Dickerson nuclear facility that was quietly the site of an environmental catastrophe.

I've talked - and posted on the internet - for ten years about the power plant at Dickerson, and we've also learned of a sewage site and a toxic waste dump on PEPCO property adjacent to the Potomac river. A nearby resident has apparently been silenced in his effort to get that site cleaned up, and we've heard nothing since in the press.

But this Neutron Products, Inc. site is news to me and every other average citizen of Montgomery County. Apparently, a dramatic legal battle played out quietly between residents, the Maryland Department of the Environment, and Neutron Products, Inc. My understanding is that, while the state was successful in closing down the facility, the site and contamination which spread to homes and railroad and industrial sites in nearby Poolesville were never cleaned up.

This latest cancer development is frightening but not surprising. While documents show that the plant has shut down, this material (Cobalt-60) has not been contained and is spreading.

Furthermore, exclusive to, I have obtained a document which shows that Neutron Products, Inc. has recently filed with the state of Maryland for a permit to build a water treatment plant at the (supposedly shuttered) site! Watch out Deer Park and Vitamin Water - that sounds like some real healthy water!

Finally, you as residents of the county should know - and have not been informed by our all-Democrat county executive and council - that Cobalt-60 plants are known terrorist targets for the al-Qaeda organization. Therefore, by permitting this toxic site to remain, the county and state Democrat governments have put all of us at risk. The site could be targeted by terrorists, and the Cobalt-60 material is also sought after as small amounts are highly toxic.

Stay tuned for more exclusive details, but I had to get this up ASAP as The Washington Post and other outlets are ignoring this environmental catastrophe and new reports of illness.

Sunday, January 04, 2009


We were shocked when Capital Properties allowed the production crew of National Treasure 2 to set up a tent city at the Westwood Shopping Center parking lot. We were surprised again when the Obama campaign was allowed to use the lot as a staging area last November 4.

So let me use my vast psychic powers to predict the future: How much do you want to bet that some use will be found by Capital Properties (who will be paid of course) for our shopping center lot on January 20? Such as bus, truck, RV parking? Tent city? Another use we haven't even thought of? And whatever use is made, expect that once again the neighborhoods won't be informed.

Stay tuned. But don't be surprised.

Saturday, January 03, 2009


County Police Forward New Immigration
Policy to Leggett for Approval

Montgomery County Police Chief Thomas Manger has forwarded a new immigration policy to County Executive Ike Leggett for approval. But there's been no public response from Mr. Leggett yet. The clock is ticking, and the public's safety hangs in the balance with each passing minute. A decision must be made.

The problem for Mr. Leggett is that the public is demanding this new policy - which would allow an examination of immigration status when an arrest is made for violent crimes - but Leggett's strongest allies oppose it.

I am sure many of those people and organizations started out with good intentions. But the situation is changing rapidly and dramatically.

Now, after the deaths of an innocent boy and senior citizen, county residents appear to be shifting towards a stronger illegal immigration position. This is putting Leggett and his fellow Democrats in a weak position, as they are now out of sync with many of their own voters.
The new police policy is a step in the right direction. One interesting outcome of the controversial policy in Prince William County was that the county police found it advantageous in breaking up human trafficking rings. So these types of policies can also assist in cracking down on international forced prostitution rings, and other violence against women that is a horrific problem here and around the world. It's also important that domestic violence victims know that they can report their abusers to the police without fear of deportation.
And there is quite a bit of overreaction by those on the left, in regards to the new policy. In practice, it would never affect most immigrants; only those arrested in relation to violent crimes. Therefore, I believe it will have a broad spectrum of support.

Will Mr. Leggett respond to the public, and thereby betray his closest allies among liberal Latino groups? Or will he cave to political pressure, and face the consequences in the 2010 election?

This is going to be one of the most interesting Montgomery County moments of 2009.

Friday, January 02, 2009



We're not a white or black America. We're not a red or blue America. We're not a rich or poor America... But apparently, we are an able-bodied and disabled America; and Barack Obama's inaugural committee has made clear that this is one difference we cannot unite on.

In a stunningly offensive announcement, the committee warned disabled Americans to avoid attending the January 20 inauguration. Should disabled citizens try to join in the festivities, the committee advised that it would be very unpleasant for them. Bad weather, rough terrain, long distances between transportation and the site, etc. But no special accomodations, either.

Ladies and gentlemen, this a blatant violation of the Americans With Disabilities Act. Under the ADA, the inauguration must accomodate - by all means necessary - any disabled person who wishes (dares?) to attend.

We may disagree on the issues, but there are certainly many disabled liberals and Democrats who voted for - and may have even worked for - Mr. Obama. There are others who want to witness the historic inauguration of our first black president. First many elderly civil rights veterans were advised it would be too difficult to attend. Now they have compounded the outrage with the most insensitive, bigoted insult to disabled Americans I have heard in some time.

It's outrageous.

But I haven't heard one peep from the liberal, bleeding-heart media. Only here, on are you hearing the real story, or any critical questioning of the committee's actions.

Once again, as a Republican who has advocated on behalf of disability access since I was in college, I find my Democrat counterparts to be shockingly hypocritical and ignorant of that very issue.

We may have elected a black president, but it appears that we still haven't enlightened ourselves into the 21st century when it comes to disability access. The ADA was one of President George H.W. Bush's greatest accomplishments. Yet, I find myself filing complaints years later as governments and major corporations fail to comply with this mandatory set of regulations.

Is it too late for Mr. Obama (or George W. Bush) to step in and enforce the ADA by January 20? Let's hope their - and the media's - silence on this issue ends soon.