Will S-1500 force Sen. Singleton to resign from his job?

New Jersey Democrats are in the process of making a pig’s breakfast of efforts to reform the use of “dark money” to influence elections, as well as the operations and processes of government.  Legislation proposed by Senator Troy Singleton (D-07) seeks to require “disclosure by independent expenditure committees; raises certain campaign contribution limits; repeals ban on certain intraparty fund transfers.”  The Bill is S-1500.

We strongly support full disclosure and are great fans of groups like Common Cause and RepresentUS, which campaign for transparency and honest government.  That said, along with open government comes the need to enforce laws against those vigilantes who use the data from such to harass and harm those who chose to financially support a political candidate or committee. 

The United States Supreme Court has ruled that making a political contribution to a candidate of your choice is a form of free speech – protected by the First Amendment in the Bill of Rights.  Disclosure should not be a means by which thugs can target the homes, families, and employment of individuals who exercise that right.  From the NAACP seeking to protect its donors from southern KKK groups to Christian groups seeking the same protection from wealthy LGBT activists, disclosure will soon lose its popular support if it becomes a means to vengeance or violence. 

Particularly as some Democrats are seeking to recruit and politicize the actual criminal class (including violent criminals), S-1500 should include tough sanctions to protect the free expression of political choice.  And this is just as important for Democrat Party primaries as it is for General Elections, if you get our drift… so don’t cut your own nuts off just to spite someone else.

S-1500 amends existing law to increase campaign contribution limits, but neglects to address the glaring deficiencies in the rules enforced by the New Jersey Election Law Enforcement Commission (NJELEC).  Take this portion of the bill as a for instance:

“No individual, other than an individual who is a candidate, no corporation of any kind organized and incorporated under the laws of this State or any other state or any country other than the United States, no labor organization of any kind which exists or is constituted for the purpose, in whole or in part, of collective bargaining, or of dealing with employers concerning the grievances, terms or conditions of employment, or of other mutual aid or protection in connection with employment, or any group shall: (1) pay or make any contribution of money or other thing of value to a candidate who has established only a candidate committee, his campaign treasurer, deputy campaign treasurer or candidate committee which in the aggregate exceeds [$2,600] $3,000 per election… No candidate who has established only a candidate committee, his campaign treasurer, deputy campaign treasurer or candidate committee shall knowingly accept from an individual, other than an individual who is a candidate, a corporation of any kind organized and incorporated under the laws of this State or any other state or any country other than the United States, a labor organization of any kind which exists or is constituted for the purpose, in whole or in part, of collective bargaining, or of dealing with employers concerning the grievances, terms or conditions of employment, or of other mutual aid or protection in connection with employment, or any group any contribution of money or other thing of value which in the aggregate exceeds [$2,600] $3,000 per election…”

Why is it a bigger deal for a labor union to contribute $3,001 to a candidate or incumbent, but no big deal to throw a six-figure job, benefits, and a pension at him?  Because that’s what is being done.

Let’s look at the case of Senator Troy Singleton as an example.  On his personal financial disclosure statement covering 2017 (the latest available), the Senator lists that he was paid in excess of $50,000 by the Northeast Regional Council of Carpenters.  This was the largest portion of his income.  His personal financial disclosure statements (2011-2016) all list the same source of income.  

And it’s not like Singleton was a union carpenter who worked his way up through the ranks and was rewarded by his brothers and sisters.  Singleton was a political operative a lieutenant in the regime of south Jersey political boss George Norcross.  Singleton worked for Norcross captain Joe Roberts, a Camden County Assemblyman who was made Speaker of that chamber.  His hiring was a straight political act.

So let’s get serious.  If you want to take out the corruption, dry up the money, stop ignoring the elephant in the room. 

But hey, if you are looking to put out press releases that congratulates yourself on some bullshit tweak that will go the same way as all the other bullshit tweaks… well, this is the kind of legislation that will accomplish that.  Just like old Joe Roberts’ “Clean Elections” b.s. of more than a decade ago.  Yep, old Joe was so committed to the people of New Jersey, that the moment he retired he got out of the crap hole he helped to create and moved to a low tax Red State.  Joe Roberts might be a hypocrite, but he was no fool.

The Democrat Party vendor blog, InsiderNJ, recently reported that Senate President Steve Sweeney (D-03) was in support of S-1500.  This is curious, given his own sources of income.  In an ethics case from 2013, documents from the United States Labor Department were entered into the record, stating the following:

“As Senate President, Steve Sweeney is paid $49,000 per year, plus an “allowance equal to 1/3 his compensation” ($16,333) for a total of $65,333.

Steve Sweeney is also an official with the Iron Workers union.  As a general organizer paid through the International Association of Bridge, Structural, Ornamental and Reinforcing Iron Workers Union, AFL-CIO, Sweeney received a base salary of $165,264 in 2012.  In addition to his base salary, Sweeney also received compensation in the form of allowances and disbursements for expenses. His total compensation through the International in 2012 was $206,092.

In addition, Sweeney received allowances of $21,351 as President of Iron Workers District Council of Philadelphia and Vicinity. In 2012, Sweeney's total compensation through the Iron Workers was $227,443.

The Department of Labor requires public disclosure by labor unions of how union dues are spent.  These disclosures list union employees, their salaries and allowances.  The disclosure also includes the allocation of time by union officers and employees estimating the amount of time spent on various activities such as organizing or administration.  One of the purposes of this disclosure is to show how much the union has spent on its core activities: collective bargaining, contract administration, and grievance adjustment.  Non-members working in a union environment are obligated to pay dues, but only to support these core activities.

According to disclosure filings by the International, Sweeney spends a considerable amount of his time as a union official on activities described as ‘Political Activities and Lobbying.’ (LM-2, Schedule 12, Disbursements to Employees, Line I, Schedule 16)

What political activities did he engage in and on behalf of which candidates and causes? The explanation offered as part of the disclosure describes political activity as ‘to influence the selection, nomination, election, or appointment of anyone to a Federal, state, or local executive, legislative or judicial public office, or office in a political organization, or the election of Presidential or Vice Presidential electors, and support for or opposition to ballot referenda.’ (Instructions for Form LM-2 Labor Organization Annual Report, page 27)

Lobbying is described as ‘associated with dealing with the executive and legislative branches of the Federal, state, and local governments and with independent agencies and staffs to advance the passage or defeat of existing or potential laws or the promulgation or any other action with respect to rules or regulations (including litigation expenses).’ 

Senator Sweeney is not registered as a lobbyist with the United States Senate or House of Representatives.  He is not a registered lobbyist in Pennsylvania.  The union that pays Sweeney's salary does not use outside lobbyists.  Instead, it uses an employee as its primary lobbyist – registered with both the House and Senate.  It is interesting to note that the primary lobbyist in Washington allocates only 50% of his time to political activity and lobbying.

New Jersey state law does not appear to allow legislators to simultaneously serve as lobbyists. 

Questions concerning Senator Sweeney's political activity and lobbying for the Iron Workers union become a more serious matter when the amount of time allocated to these activities is noted.  Calculating the value of that allocation as a portion of Sweeney's compensation adds further emphasis. 

Sweeney spent 30% of his union effort in 2012 on political activity and lobbying.  In 2011 and 2010, the amount was 38%.  In 2009, the amount was 34%.  There is no indication of the actual amount of time Sweeney devoted to these activities, only the proportion of the whole.

Placing dollar amounts on Sweeney's activity helps put matters into an easily understandable form.  In 2012, Sweeney's gross pay was $165,264, and his total compensation was $227,443.  In simple terms, Sweeney was paid $49,579 of his gross, or $68,233 of his total compensation, to engage in political activity and lobbying for the union.  In 2011, Sweeney was paid $62,141 of his total compensation for political activity and lobbying.  In 2010, $58,377, and in 2009, $56,669.”

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In Senator Sweeney’s defense, it must be said that he started his career as a blue collar man.  Sweeney was an actual ironworker, served his apprenticeship and earned his way.  He wasn’t a fake like Troy Singleton.

As for the ethics complaint.  It was brought before the New Jersey State Legislature’s Joint Committee on Ethical Standards, that august body where ethics goes to die.  They duly heard the complaint, killed a few chickens, and closely examined the entrails… before the Norcross lieutenant who chaired the committee delivered a lecture to the complainant about daring to bring such affronts before them.  Don’t you know man, this is New Jersey!

And it’s not just these guys.  Most of the Democrats in the New Jersey Legislature are in hock to some machine, serving some master, living off pay checks courtesy of some regime.  Do they recuse themselves when presented with a conflict of self-interest?  Of course not!  That’s why they are there.  People like Senator Nick Sacco (with three public jobs and collecting a public pension) and Teresa Ruiz (two public jobs, with a third for her spouse) routinely vote on legislation that directly benefits the political machines that pay them.  That’s why they are there.

David Goodman, a spokesperson for Represent New Jersey, recently had this to say about political reform in New Jersey:  “Partisan Gerrymandering serves to strengthen the forces and effectiveness of dark money.  What it really amounts to is rigging elections—politicians prioritizing big donors to get elected, and then redrawing their districts to stay in office. They are picking their voters, instead of the other way around.”

He noted that just a month ago, Represent New Jersey alongside coalition partners, like the League of Women Voters of New Jersey, organized the fight against the partisan gerrymandering bills with action alerts, countless calls to legislators, impromptu hallway lobbying and in-person advocacy at the Statehouse in Trenton.  Facing massive grassroots pressure, the Senate President and Assembly Speaker pulled the amendment.  RepresentUs members showed that this movement is ready to fight against corruption by those in power—regardless of party affiliation.

Goodman says he is excited that the state Senate is holding hearings on S-1500, on January 17th.   He should temper that excitement with realism and know that they are playing him and RepresentUS.  And that’s okay, so long as he knows, and then uses that knowledge to turn it around… and play them.

Blame Trenton Democrats for making Cory Booker discuss his sexuality

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Writer Matt Katz recently tweeted: “Cory Booker confirms his heterosexuality (which he has to do, because opponents have stirred rumors about this from the beginning) & says he sees a pathway to becoming the first unmarried president since 1884.”

Well lucky Cory Booker… at least he is alive to confirm his sexuality.  That’s not the case with James Buchanan, the 15th President of the United States, and someone whose sexuality has been the center of endless speculation – in an attempt to codify same and to teach children that he was America’s “first gay president.”

See, the LGBT movement has become a kind of religion… well, not kind of, it is a religion.  This new religion has adopted, as one of its core beliefs, something not unlike the Mormon Church’s “baptism for the dead” – also known as vicarious baptism or proxy baptism.  In the new LGBT faith, living people speak on behalf of those who are dead and ask on their behalf to become “gay” so that they may be added, posthumously, to the fold. 

Once added to the LGBT “sainthood” their life “stories” are then taught to children in the didactic manner, much as children in religious schools are taught about the lives of saints or martyrs or prophets.  In New Jersey, with yesterday’s passage of S-1569, the Legislature has made this an unfunded mandate – with the scrapping of old textbooks and their replacement with new “religious” tracts that focus on the lives of said “saints”. 

Strange how things go.  That we are back to this again.  It is like the ring-around-the-rosy in Poussin’s “Dance to the Music of Time”.  There is no such thing as progress… we just get stupid again, profligate, dissolute. 

But the religion bit is for real.  No less than Atlantic magazine and New York magazine have today unveiled stories that paint Cory Booker as the candidate of a “new” religion.  Atlantic calls it the “theory of love”, while New York magazine plumps for “candidate of the Christian Left”.  No kidding.  So it’s here.  Welcome to the new paradigm.  The religion of the Trenton Democrats is no longer Roman Catholic or Jewish or Protestant… but that of the golden ass, the most holy orgasm, and the sacrament of abortion.  These are not matters of policy… but of faith.  Not open to debate.

Writing in the Star-Ledger yesterday, reporter Jonathan Salant (pronounced Slant) noted that when Booker first ran for the Senate and was asked about his sexual orientation, Booker answered, “What does it matter?” 

We could not agree more.

But that was back in those quaint times of long ago… 2013.  Today, in today’s politics, religion matters – and nothing matters more than how you reach orgasm and with whom.  Piss on policy… today’s religious leaders in politics, corporate America, and academia want to know how you get down.  Just read S-1569.  It is the most important thing about you.

Poor Cory Booker.  He wants to run for President, so he has to declare a side.  And in the America of today – the America fostered by legislation like that passed yesterday in Trenton – it is a conundrum as great as that faced by any Irish politician in the midst of The Troubles.  What are you?  Who are you?  It’s all that matters.

The illusion of LGBT’s power to help Republicans…

Yes, we know it’s about the parties.  Who wouldn’t want to be invited?  The music is cool, the drinks well poured, the energy is just… better.  But none of this is about politics.

Once again we must, sadly, point out that Republicans do not benefit by currying favor with Garden State Equality and the state’s LGBT political bosses.  To have GSE high priest Chris Fuscarino’s benediction means nothing in a General Election and even less in a Republican primary.

Two incumbent Republican congressman came to an understanding with GSE that meant keeping social conservatives at arm’s length.  In return for dissing their base, their Democrat opponents lost Fuscarino’s blessing – but won (or appear to have won) their elections anyway. 

As with the case of Bob “I am a different kind of Republican” Hugin, wrapping oneself in a rainbow flag meant not a jot on the profit side – but very much depressed the base on the debit side.  Conversely, the one unabashedly social conservative Republican in the congressional delegation – the one specifically targeted for defeat by Garden State Equality – won re-election without much difficulty.  It appears he will now be New Jersey’s only Republican member of Congress. 

We suspect this is why the ever watchful David Wildstein placed GSE’s Chris Fuscarino in the losers column on Friday, over at NewJerseyGlobe.com.  Wildstein noted that the portly Fuscarino “missed the boat” by failing to endorse the Democrat challengers to the two GOP incumbents and instead “making his top target the only Republican congressman who won.”

Sigh… When will Republicans learn that the only sure way to earn the support of people who vote like LGBT is their top priority is by executing a change of registration form and running in the Democrat primary.  It’s all about the shoes, and red is just so out of fashion. 

Do voters prefer to be lied to? Is it the fault of PC and LGBT speech codes?

Ever wonder why candidates are so afraid to tell it to you straight?  Maybe it’s because they’re afraid of the extreme reactions that being honest produces?  So in an effort to avoid those extreme reactions – and to prevent being branded an “extremist” themselves – politicians resort to bullshit.  And voters – especially the snowflake variety – suck up the bullshit and condemn anything that even smells like the truth. 

That would explain the two years of non-stop ANTIFA inspired rants by candidates like Obama bureaucrat Mikie Sherrill, Obama bureaucrat Tom Malinowski, and Obama bureaucrat Andy Kim… and it would explain why those Democrats are now looking for a way to move their followers and activists to the center. 

Well, he’s at it again…

Did you enjoy that?  What?  Too much? 

Yeah, it certainly is shock therapy.  But then, you needed it, didn’t you?

About Jonathan Pie (from Wikipedia)… Jonathan Pie is a fictitious British news reporter, created and played by British actor and comedian Tom Walker.  Pie appears in a series of video clips where he rants about the state of politics in the United Kingdom, and the United States presented as if he is a real reporter speaking his personal opinions to camera before or after filming a regular news segment.

The first spoof news report featuring Pie, released just after the election of Jeremy Corbyn as leader of the Labour Party, was responding to mainstream media reports that gave particular weight to Corbyn's past relationship with Diane Abbott. Walker was soon approached by several media companies, including RT UK, the Russian government-funded television channel, which offered him complete creative control. He worked with RT for several months, before leaving in July 2016, just prior to his appearance at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in August.

The character received international coverage after the 2016 US election, when his report on Donald Trump's victory went viral, becoming a YouTube trending video. PJ Media did not recognise Jonathan Pie as a fictitious character, presenting him instead as a real-life, professional "British lefty reporter".

Are all Hollywood “makers of our culture” rapists and molesters?

Liberal Hollywood runs on money.  The “art” of imagining what will hook both investors and consumers.  Hollywood is what makes our culture – has made our culture – for nearly a century.  This November we celebrate the 100th anniversary of the end of the what was built on hard work and “manifest destiny” and the beginning of the culture of modern make-believe. 

It is no surprise that Hollywood is liberal.  That the “entertainment” industry and its media sidekicks are the Democrat Party’s most consistent donors. 

From that perfectly “sincere” smile to his well-manicured toenails, Senator Cory Booker is a media darling.  Hollywood sees nothing wrong in the importation of women (“for a friend”) or in exchanging luxuries for “help” (“for a friend”)… and so Hollywood sees nothing wrong with Senator Bob Menendez.

And Hollywood just adores that weasel class of ex-bureaucrats with Hollywood manufactured “back stories” who now menace New Jersey’s voters… Andy “winner of the hot cross bun, with bar” Kim, Tommy (him pretty) Malinowski, and Mikie Sherrill.  BTW, “Mikie” is Hollywood for “Rebecca Michelle”.  Aside from the ubiquitous “AKAs” employed by the criminal class, apparently the two careers for which a change of name is accepted practice are Hollywood and politics. 

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Among the latest Hollywood icons felled by the #MeToo movement is one of its prominent feminist leaders (who is alleged to have seduced a teenaged boy).  No, it wasn’t her student and she isn’t a member of the NEA. 

Then there are the two LGBT activists who drugged and raped another man.  Prior to this they were famous for having been “married” by no less than far-Left U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.  According to the New York media, the rape was “violent”.  One of those names came up as a contributor to our old pal Andy Kim, a candidate for Congress in South Jersey.  You need to check it out Andy and make sure it’s not the guy accused of rape.  See buddy, we’re giving you a heads-up (that’s the kind of sob’s we are). 

We kid with Andy about him winning the “hot cross bun, with bar” because he got a civilian award from a famous general.  No, it wasn’t as important an award as the one the general’s mistress got… or as big a deal as the one the general gave to his other gal pal.  But hey, that shit probably wasn’t worth it anyway, so we’re just happy you got your handshake and photograph.  It’s all cool.

As the list of fat donors to the Democrat Party and its candidates felled by the #MeToo movement has rotted and eaten through the Democrats’ hegemony in Hollywood, their sidekicks in the media have largely looked the other way.  The Star-Ledger’s Tom Moran has, once again yesterday, used his newspaper’s editorial pages as an in-kind contribution to Democrats on the ballot this year. 

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“Impeach, condemn, then execute” seems to be Tom Moran’s and the Star-Ledger’s message – for both the President and congressional Republicans – but that’s not how it used to be.  We remember finding stuff like this in the Ledger…

Kenneth Starr, meat-ax in hand, is entering the critical and, let's hope, final stages of his rugged surgery to transform Bill Clinton's image from cut-up to criminal. He must also change the country's mind-set from so-what shrugs to gasps of begone. It may take some doing.”

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Most members of Congress from New Jersey would like to hear more facts and less speculation in judging the allegations facing President Clinton, but U.S. Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.) said he's heard enough. Lautenberg, the state's senior Democrat, said he was satisfied with Clinton's denials… ‘I believe him,’ he said.”

Ah, now that was journalism.  Not what you get today…

“Dramatic, split-screen findings of criminality by President Trump's ex-lawyer and his former campaign chair this week… Both will probably go to prison, and testimony also implicates Trump in a serious crime… two women who said they had affairs with Trump… it's a felony, a final insult from a man who rose to power on a promise to drain the swamp, but instead gave it over to even bigger gang of grifters, including himself.”

“Robert Mueller, whose job it is to sort through all this stink, is pursuing his own investigation of potential collusion by the Trump administration in Russia's hacking of our 2016 election… But if the president committed election fraud, it rises to the level of ‘high crimes and misdemeanors,’ and is therefore an impeachable offense.”

“Once again, the focus turns to our own squirming GOP representatives, and we hear crickets. None would say on Wednesday what they will do to ensure that Congress investigates this; not even two newcomers running for office… Not only have they done absolutely nothing to curb Trump's swampy behavior, as he brazenly profits off his public office and invites serious conflicts of interest; all five -- including three seeking re-election -- helped to cover up any crimes…”

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Wow… Trump is a criminal, all Republicans are criminals… even the ones not yet in office!

This is certainly a change in tune for a newspaper that defended Hillary Clinton’s monetization of the Office of the Secretary of State, or that never asked how Bill Clinton, who entered national office a rather economically challenged man, left office decidedly well-off and who has gone on to amass a fortune worth more than $100 million.  Grifters?  Conflicts of interest?  Crickets, Mr. Moran… crickets?

In fairness to Tom Moran, this editorial came out after a particularly eventful lunch (one with which his very white gut couldn’t cope) leading to a three hour long stream of consciousness, during which his screed was composed.  In future, remember this, and don’t fault the man.  Fault his bowels.

To close on an up-note, the Star-Ledger suggested we look to the leadership of the great and the good… that godfather of a family of saints – priests even – the incorruptible Pascrells.  So what did godfather, Congressman Bill Pascrell, have to tell us about President Trump?  That his family was part of the swamp?  Too close to bad people?  Conflicted?  A crook?  “I’m the face of Democrat Party reform,” says the godfather.  Indeed.  A monograph is long overdue, charting that family’s financial progress, as godfather made his way up the greasy pole of political advancement.  The face of sweetness and light.  Indeed.

We appreciated him more when he was a little less full of shit, considering the fate of President Clinton…

“Democrat Bill Pascrell Jr. said Clinton's admissions were ‘painful to all of us,’ and added he hoped ‘we can soon put this behind us.’  But he said he could not second guess what Starr would eventually report to Congress. ‘I'll keep an open mind if I'm called to make a decision in my official capacity.’”

Yes, “an open mind” – good idea.  You do that.  Keep an open mind.