Sound-off 8/19

August 18, 2013 

The St. Clair County Fair was very disappointing. We drove 40 miles for it. We always looked forward to getting the great pork steaks from Pig-In-A-Poke and taking home their good pulled pork. They are gone and the only choice was carnival food. And the Expo Hall was nothing more than a rerun of the camper show, home show, craft show and even a little flea market. No big name entertainment. This is not the county fair of years past. A promoter from Millstadt or Mascoutah needs to step up and take this fair out of Belleville.

Confused, all right

BND Aug. 9, "Egyptians confused about ambiguous American message." Well, join the crowd. I'd say most Americans are also confused about messages coming out of Washington, D.C., these days.

Costs to consolidation

Another editorial proclaiming consolidation is the answer to all the ills of education. Also another editorial devoid of facts. Consolidation will not save anyone any money, especially taxpayers. Everyone should think about the district they currently live in. Chances are it has debt. Each person will have to judge if that debt is warranted. But do you really want to add the debt of all the districts surrounding you to the debt your district already has to pay off?

No money, no visit?

The people in St. Clair County Jail cannot afford video visiting. They don't have money. If they did, they wouldn't be in jail. No money ,no visit? Is that fair?

Laughs in Belleville

The BND political sign dispute editorial is like a re-run of "I Love Lucy." The local machine dug the heel of its boot into the neck of its political opponents a long time ago and has maintained its stranglehold in Belleville, St. Clair County, the state and Washington for far longer than that. This is just another hilarious episode. And a new season of the show is delivered every year thanks to the voters, I suppose. If you like this, that's great. If you don't, well, too bad. Remember that boot and the voters who put it there, season after hilarious season.

Obama is fair game

In the movie "Where the Buffalo Roam," Bill Murray plays the demented journalist Hunter S. Thompson. Thompson had a mannequin with a Richard Nixon mask and trained his Doberman to attack the mannequin at the uttering of the word "Nixon." In the movie "Point Break" the late actor Patrick Swayze wore a Ronald Reagan mask during bank robberies. In the show "Game of Thrones" the producer used a likeness of George W. Bush's severed head on a spike. The outrage over a rodeo clown wearing a mask of President Obama represents the hypocrisy that is the left.

Start cutting clerks

The clerks in Caseyville who seem annoyed that you bothered them when you go to the Village Hall make $21 an hour? We, the taxpayers, need a complete audit of the finances of Caseyville and to make some cuts such as a 25 percent or more reduction in staff as well as a 25 percent wage cut and a five-year wage freeze. Taxpayers have had enough. Someone educate the taxpayers on what can be done.

Complaints fade away

I have a wife and kids who love me. I have good friends. I have a loyal pet. I have a good job. I have a home, a car, clothes to wear, food to eat, and a few dollars in my pocket. Wait, I forgot the problem that I was going to sound off about.

Where's Clerk Cook?

How about the BND looking into Belleville City Clerk Dallas Cook's attendance record -- or should I say lack of record. He is never at City Hall. Days go by without him calling or reporting in. He lets FOIA requests sit for days on his desk, along with mail. He wants to give a job to a campaign buddy. I am sure that BND will do nothing with this comment but maybe the paper can show that it is not one-sided. Let's see.

BND going to the dogs

I am amazed that your paper would run a story in the BND Magazine about Four Muddy Paws in St. Louis and Edwardsville when there is a store like that right here in our own town! The magazine was all about dogs but not one word about Dog Day Afternoon in Belleville, which is just like the featured shop. I guess the BND does not believe in keeping it local and supporting small businesses in its own town. What a shame.

Who's in charge?

Who is responsible for the failing school districts in St. Louis and other parts of the country? Not the students or the parents. Get rid of those administrators and teachers responsible for the failing districts. Parents should be at those failing school district offices every day demanding answers. And busing to another school is not the answer.

Not the Catholic way

In response to the followers or groupies of the Rev. Roger Karban, I feel it is time that they remove the veil over their eyes and perceive him as he truly is. Karban writes about the Scriptures with his own slant, his own interpretation. The priestly duties he performs are his own interpretation, not those of the Catholic Church. I believe that Bishop Edward Braxton's decision to drop his column from the Messenger was justified and long overdue.

The people ignored

Every one of those spineless aldermen and their leader Mayor Mark "Forked tongue" Eckert ought to be run out of Belleville. They knew all along that they were not going to drop that so-called temporary tax and they couldn't care less if the meeting was packed with upset taxpayers. They decided to pass the extension anyway. Do they realize that the taxpayers they chose to ignore were the ones who voted them in? Well, just wait. They will be voted out.

Critical of Kern

When is somebody going to drop kick St. Clair County Board Chairman Mark Kern for all his stupidity and arrogance? Who does he think he is to move experienced people around from one committee to a lesser committee just because he doesn't agree with their opinions or questions? The County Board members who stand up for their rights to speak deserve all of our respect. I urge them to keep up the good work.

Oust disruptive force

Alderman Pat Baeske of Fairview Heights should resign. She is the most negative influence the city has ever had.

Is racing done?

Recently many visitors and patrons of businesses in Belleville received some terrible news. Belle-Clair Speedway will only host two more events this year and negotiations for an equitable 2014 contract between promoter and the owners of Belle-Clair Fairgrounds Park have ceased. Unless a new contract is agreed upon or new promoter steps forward, it appears a long tradition of racing on Friday nights in Belleville will come to an end. It is unfortunate for the many businesses who depend on the income generated by the influx of fans and competitors each Friday and for the city, which will not benefit from the tax revenue generated. I encourage all interested and concerned people to contact the owners of Belle-Clair Fairgrounds Park and ask that they reconsider reopen negotiations.

Show us the jobs

In response to "Clean energy creates jobs": I'm tired of these clean air activists claiming coal and anything doing with oil is the cause of dirty air. Now we hear it again from Frank Schawaller, who must have the Obama administration's playbook saying clean energy with create jobs. Well, Mr. Schawaller, quit guessing and show us how many jobs clean energy will bring the people in Illinois; we don't care how many jobs clean energy will create in another state.

Missing Illinois?

I agree with letter writer Gary Like, we do need to flush our political toilet, but I get the impression from his letter to the editor that he misses living in a crime-ridden and politically corrupt state. And if I'm right, he will be back living in Illinois in the next three years. Gary, if you decide to move back, let me know. I want to buy your home so I can move out of Illinois.

Ground his idea

I've been in the ground and air freight business for 28 years. If there were a true need for the type of aircraft a company at Mid-America Airport wants to build, Fred Smith of FedEx would be sponsoring, investing and locking orders up with these folks. The cost to ship freight regionally via air is extremely expensive to get something delivered a few hours faster. Expedited ground carriers are filling the gap for true high priority and custody sensitive freight transportation. A good portion of FedEx Express' regional overnight air freight travels by truck. Then there are the folks like Forward Air who provide economical scheduled terminal-to-terminal freight services. Unless there is a player from a major transportation company (FedEx, UPS, etc.) or other potential customer who will be willing to pay for this aircraft, the taxpayers should insist that their money is not wasted on what is, in my opinion, a boondoggle.

Legal nightmare

What can be done when the legal system fails a young child? The child in question is being mentally abused by her father's live-in girlfriend. Anything the child tells her loved ones is considered hearsay. Meanwhile, this little girl has been dragged through the legal system for almost a year. She is terrified to stay overnight at her father's but the court is forcing her to. If her mother refuses visitation, he gets the police involved. Does anybody have any ideas on how to resolve this mess before a child is completely ruined? This case started out in St. Clair County and is now pending in Madison County.

Democracy in action

Though the date, time and location are not yet set for the special meeting to fill the vacant Belleville Township trustee position, many aspects of this process should offer encouragement to the electors. The chance to elect rather than to accept an appointment places control in the hands of the voters, which can only benefit the community as a whole. It seems that an important component of this procedure is to nominate a moderator. I recommend St. Clair County Clerk Thomas Holbrook for this task. I would also insist that there be a pair of election judges, one Democrat and one Republican, to assist Holbrook. The voter registration verification process should be done at the meeting and all votes counted and results confirmed before the close of the meeting. I encourage everyone to participate in this important endeavor.

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