Monday, November 9, 2015

Ten Reasons to Leave NEPA

The subject of how bad NEPA is has been addressed by the Weekender, but we thought we'd come up with some new content. Our critiques will be a little more comprehensive since we don't rely on advertisers whose profits come from the region.

To start with, six of the top 10 worst places to live in Pennsylvania are in Northeastern Pennsylvania.They are in bold.
  1. New Castle
  2. Nanticoke
  3. Johnstown
  4. Wilkes-Barre
  5. Shenandoah
  6. Corry
  7. Hazleton
  8. Dickson City
  9. Tamaqua
  10. Chester
Let's look at specifics as to why NEPA towns ranked so high.

10. Crime
Usually the most crime ridden areas in the United States are places where large numbers of poor blacks live. For example, the top 5 in 2013 were East St. Louis, IL; Camden, NJ; Gary, IN; Chester, PA; and Saginaw, MI which are 97%, 48%, 85%, 75%, 46% black, respectively.  Even though Wilkes-Barre is only 11% black, its crime rate was still incredibly high, leading it to be 18th most dangerous city in the entire country in 2013. The setting for much of the crime is Sherman Hills, a series of run-down section eight apartments allegedly run by neglectful orthodox Jews from New York. Murder is largely relegated to the warring factions of gangs who infest these projects and nearby localities of the city, but should you be an over-active critic of crime, you may find yourself dead like Donald Bachman or Michael Onley. In Scranton the situation is a little better, but you may want to hesitate in participating in Uber in certain areas.

9. Beggars
Wilkes-Barre may not have the charms of many big cities, but it has big city levels of beggars. Walk through Public Square in Wilkes-Barre and you'll be asked for money. At times it seems like the homeless capital of the world, with various vagabonds laying about on benches. Bathrooms in the vicinity are tightly monitored, and the Barnes and Noble's bathrooms are often closed because bums wipe themselves down in them.

Normally pan handlers ask for a dollar or a quarter, but if someone claims to have suffered an auto accident and urgently needs a large sum of money for their car, try asking them to call the police for help. If they immediately dismiss the idea and become tight lipped, then you've got a scam artist in your midst.

8. Prevailing Misery
According to a study in 2014, Northeast Pennsylvania was rated #1 out of 177 metro areas in unhappiness. Few people below retirement age live in the region because they want to. Usually some health problem or family issue keeps them around.

7. Drinking
It used to be said that "there's a church and a bar on every block" in Northeast PA. Drinking culture dates back to coal mining days when men soothed their aching bodies with various spirits. These corner bars are becoming less common however and have been replaced by cliche ones that blast music to make conversation difficult and drinking easier. According to one survey, the area checked in at 4 out of 105 metro areas for alcohol and cigarette consumption. Alternative environments like vaping lounges and coffee shops are few and far between but do exist. However, the crowd in such places is usually composed of aloof cliques of college students.

6. Nepotism
If you end up working for a family-owned business in NEPA, you'll end up doing all the work while the better paid family members order you around. It's a quasi feudal system as good-paying positions are doled out to family members in a system of patronage. These people are often incompetent and seldom held liable for their actions. Just to get a job you have to be the friend of someone, but unless you're related to people you'll be stuck at the bottom.

5. A High Boy-Girl Ratio
According to the 2010 census, the ratio of men to women among 25-29 somethings in Luzerne County is the same as it is in China, 93 girls to 100 boys. The situation in China has been recognized as a crisis by major news outlets, but Luzerne County's remains unrecognized.

But women aren't just scarce numerically. Qualitatively speaking, secondary sexual characteristics seem more often like an inarticulate afterthought than well articulated feature.

4. Brain Drain 
Good things start out in NEPA but seldom remain. Poor students do well in climbing the achievement ladder in NEPA. But they don't stay. Only 27% of area college students plan to seek employment in the region following graduation. The result of this is that the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton/Hazleton area ranks in the bottom quintile in educational attainment, specifically, 124 out of 150 regions in the country. Interactions with remaining inhabitants will confirm these results.

3. Bad Job Selection
Let's look at the top ten occupation categories in NEPA:

Rank/ Job / Salary
1 Retail Salespersons $21,630
2 Cashiers $18,530
3 Combined Food Preparation and Fast Food $17,990
4 Office Clerks, General $26,480
5 Waiters and Waitresses $18,060
6 Heavy and Tractor-Trailer Truck Drivers $37,540
7 Secretaries and Administrative Assistants $29,780
8 Registered Nurses $64,380
9 Stock Clerks $20,200
10 Freight, Stock, and Material Movers $28,780

Only one of these categories requires a college degree.

Furthermore, the average salary in NEPA is $30,890, which is lower than the Pennsylvania state average of $35,640.

2. Apathy
The last three people who asked to meet up with this author live at least two hours away. Two of them aren't from the region and the third attends graduate school in the mid west. The only person in their 20s who asks to hang out was born outside NEPA. In contrast, there's a fellow who lives in Ashley, PA, born and raised there, who this author has been trying to meet for the past three years who is always too tired to meet up. Another friend relates that he tried to start a band but had trouble holding band practice because other members couldn't get transportation. The band dissolved.

The ambitious, outgoing, lively young people move to urban hubs or developing areas around them, and those who remain are hostile, cliquish, and live in a semi-comatose manner. They don't have conversations, they don't have hobbies, they don't have sex. Vegetating in front of television is their preferred pastime. When they do go out, it's in cliques, and they seldom interact with strangers. The females adopt pets as a outlet for their motherly energies until their wombs go barren, and if they do have a boyfriend, they avoid all contact with other men. Sexual restraint among the women seems stronger than in tribal Saudi Arabia.

1. Predatory Corruption
Prison is frequently retirement home for NEPA elected officials, viz Ray Musto, Bob Mellow, Greg Skrepenak, possibly Bob Cordaro and his cohort AJ Munchak, and judges Mark Ciavarella and Michael Conahan. While prison may be an eventuality for many, the actions of the former two Conanhan and Civarella, are particularly disturbing. The two sentenced children who misbehaved in school to a private for-profit prison in return for kickbacks. The scheme was dubbed the Kids for Cash, and made national news. It's one thing if a rep like Paul Kanjorski skims off tax payer funds to direct money to a phony family owned business, but it's quite another if someone steals your child. The children of poor people were the most victimized by Kids for Cash, but that didn't stop the NEPA elite at Wyoming Seminary from attempting to name their athletic field after real estate mogul Robert Mericle, owner of the for profit prison, who allegedly issued the kickbacks to the judges. That describes the hostile mentality many of the NEPA elite have for the poor and middle class. This too dates back to the coal mining days, when the descendants of 18th century immigrants from Connecticut known as the Connecticut Yankees lorded over the poor Catholic coal miners, making them indebted to the company store, and paying them as little as possible.

Mark Robbins exposed another such predatory scandal known as Cars for Cash. Leo Glodzik, a heavily tattooed truck operator working for Wilkes-Barre City, charged exorbitant impounding fees to the people whose cars he towed during much of Tom Leighton's administration. Glodzik was connected with city attorney Bill Vinsko. The $600 a night impounding fees Glodzik charged prevented poor people from getting their cars back and amounted to de facto theft. He was stealing from the poor to give to the rich. Wilkes-Barre police looked the other way along with the majority of city council members. Mayor-elect Tony George was the only one to speak out against it. After failing to persuade the other Wilkes-Barre City officials, activist and Glodzik victim Mark Robbins petitioned County District Attorney Stefanie Salavantis to do something about it, but she had someone on her staff who was related to then Wilkes-Barre city police chief Gerald Dessoye, so she declined. Not until the feds planted $1,000 in a car that Glodzik stole did a full investigation take place. No local authorities ever investigated Glodzik. His accuser Mark Robbins is one of few rich people who seek justice for the poor and unconnected.

Sunday, January 25, 2015

A Parkade of Horrors in Wilkes-Barre

Urine trouble if you set foot in this Wilkes-Barre parkade's stairwell You may notice pools of a substance other than H2O of which the entire stairwell reeks. At the top floor are discarded beer cans from many bums seeking a warm refuge from a Wilkes-Barre January as they magically transform an intoxicating substance into a disgusting one.

Should you walk on other stairways, you may have to dodge pools of vomit, flattened pizza slices, and mysterious dark clumps of things that are disfigured beyond recognition.

And be careful when walking to the nearby Movies 14 Cinema since an extremely slick oily substance seems to have been dumped all over the stairs leading there.

In fact if you're going to see a horror movie, it would be cheaper and perhaps more horrifying to simply walk in this parkade on a wet and rainy night where odors permeate the moist air and things from the dingy ground stick to your shoe. You could get more of a thrill while at the same time refrain from enriching liberal Hollywood.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

WVW Teacher should not be Charged with a Felony

A 31 year old school teacher from Wyoming Valley West High School had sex with a 18 year old student. She should not be charged a felony because it's not as it would be if she were a man.

Gender equality is ideology. Gender difference is biology. No ordinary woman who is 31 years old can overpower an ordinary young man, aged 17 or 18. Therefore the sex was consensual, barring any blackmail. Moreover, the nature of the sex did not involve a dominant adult pursuing a submissive minor as would be the case with an adult man pursuing a female minor. Moreover, a young woman is more sensitive to bonding from sex than a young man, and it's physiologically more of a commitment for a young woman than for a young man.

Equivocating the relationship of an adult woman and male minor with an adult man and female minor is biologically incorrect.

While ideology is a noble effort to escape biology, we shouldn't totally dismiss biological considerations such as gender differences in our efforts to escape nature.

A misdemeanor would suffice as a legal punishment.

Friday, December 20, 2013

A Cacaphonous Judeo-Christmas

Christmas Songs written by Jews in the 20th century don't mix with Ancient Christian Christmas Carols.

One cold winter's day in the prime of Advent there funneled into the Osterhout Library an unknown women's group. Once settled, they proceeded to sing a wide array of Christmas carols in a large community room. A library is maybe the least tactful place to sing carols, but a contentious person would make an exception for the ladies because one so rarely hears live voices singing carols these days.

If there was a problem with the carols, it was how the ladies alternated back and forth between spiritual old songs and the somewhat cynical popular Christmas songs from the first half of the 20th century. The "sound" of songs like "A Holly Jolly Christmas" differs vastly from songs like "O Come, O Come Emmanuel." For this reason the ladies' performance was incongruous and kind of maddening to the aesthetically sensitive listener.

Christmas has changed over the past century. What made the holiday fun in pre-20th century days was the festive spirit. Song like Deck the Halls, We Wish You a Merry Christmas, Here We Come A-Caroling, and Jingle Bells embody this spirit of merriment. But a far greater proportion of pre-20th century Christmas songs were religious hymns that conveyed spiritual sincerity. The most popular of these hymnal songs are:

O Come, O Come Emmanuel
Silent Night
Joy to the Word 
The First Noel
O Come All Ye Faithful
O Holy Night
Hark the Herald
We Three Kings
Away in a Manger
It Came Upon a Midnight Clear

The "sound" of these songs differs greatly from the pop Christmas songs of the 20th century, many of which were written by Jews who appreciated Christmas but who couldn't and wouldn't grasp any meaning in the holiday that went deeper than gooey nostalgia found in Irving Berlin's "White Christmas". Jews of 20th century yore appreciated Christmas, just not in the same way pre-20th century Christians did.

The setting for much modern Christmas music is department stores. It would be awkward to hear religious hymns while trying on clothes or buying toys for junior. It may be outright sacrilegious to do so.

Television commercials also play a big role in defining what a modern Christmas is, and these would obviously favor the Santa theme because they are selling stuff that Santa will bring.

The radio is the main source of most people's knowledge of Christmas music, and it follows the commercial trend. Aside from frequently playing the top ten worst Christmas songs, they play songs like these top ten as reported by ASCAP.

1. Winter Wonderland
2. The Christmas Song (Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire)
3. Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas
4. Sleigh Ride
5. Santa Claus Is Coming To Town
6. Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!
7. White Christmas
8. Jingle Bell Rock
9. Rudolph The Red Nosed Reindeer
10. Little Drummer Boy

Usually 1/3 to 1/2 of the top 25 songs in any given year are written and/or composed by Jews. The only two religious songs that creep in are the lamentable "Little Drummer Boy" and "Do You Hear What I Hear?". If any song epitomizes the aesthetic monstrosity of a Judeo-Christmas, it is the latter, which was written by couple consisting of a Jewish woman and Christian man. There is a theatrical coldness to it and a strained sincerity, as if it is something done merely for something doing it. It is a compromise that erases the best qualities from everyone.

But if most modern Christmas songs are aesthetically lamentable, then capitalism is proving that one doesn't need good aesthetics to survive. To make it in a capitalist society, you don't need to have good taste. You just need to find a way to use the market to make money. Rather than sincere flourishings of spirituality to coat a rough agricultural life or festive crescendos to end a hard year's work, we use less sincere pop jingles to accompany our less austere jobs.

There's no reason to consult spiritual beauty or festive energy when the goal is always another item in Santa's bag or to experience some picturesque snowfall. Because appetites are more frequently satisfied in a more productive capitalist society, the occasion for satisfying them means less, and holiday sincerity overall suffers.

Moreover, for most people, surviving in a capitalist involves many compromises. Putting up with incompetent superiors, doing demeaning jobs, and using one physical motion as in factory work or one mental exercise as in paperwork, repeatedly, till it's time to go home involves compromising one's will toward others. Compromise breeds cynicism, thus making more sincere music seem alien.

Seeking a deeper meaning in life vis a vis the hymnal songs does not get you anywhere in a capitalist economy. Neither does yuletide merriment which is symbolized with leftover pagan symbols such as evergreen trees, holly, ivy, mistletoe, etc.

The meaning of the 20th century songs the ladies sang is very different from the pre-20th century Christian/pagan carols they inter-spliced them with. This is not to say 20th century songs about Santa, Christmas nostalgia, and wintery weather are bad. Moreover, in no way is it artificial that we would have less sincere capitalist music in a less sincere capitalist culture. But for those looking for something more than what such a less sincere society can generate, they do not suffice. Mixing them together with religious songs and old pagan songs denudes them all of their essence. So it'd be nice if the ladies could finish the 20th century songs apart from the older carols.


Besides the hymnal songs we listed above, there are some lesser known songs we'd like to share for those looking to explore the landscape of Christmas songs out there:

God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen
What Child is This? (set to the tune Greensleeves)
Good King Wenceslaus
Carol of the Bells (based on an old pagan song Shchedryk.)

From France:
Sing We Now of Christmas
Bring a Torch Jeannette Isabella
Now is Born the Divine Christ Child
The March of the Kings (tune found in Bizet's opera "Carmen", and allegedly comes from crusader days.)

From England:
Ding Dong Merrily on High
Coventry Carol
The Boar's Head (about a pagan symbol)
The Holly and the Ivy

From Germany:
How Great Our Joy

From Appalachia, USA:
I Wonder as I Wander

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Message to Readers of this Blog

Dear readers,

There aren't very many of you out there. The few views we receive do not justify the amount of time we spend writing articles. We started off writing disjointed rants to get things off our proverbial chest, but now we wish to produce more original, informed and professional pieces, and thus we will need a better platform.

In the past seven months we've become a lot more serious about politics. We've begun to ask questions that one isn't supposed to ask. We've reached conclusions that would outrage our former fellow travelers.

We no longer wish to promote increasing individual liberty. There are more pressing issues. Even if a liberty candidate like Ron Paul were to win, he would not address the most troubling problems on the horizon which people have blinded themselves to with belief in egalitarianism.

Within certain confines liberty philosophy makes sense, and within these confines the practice of it makes for peaceable high-functioning societies.

But the world will change for the worse, liberty or not. Politics must no longer be about elections but rather preserving populations on a small scale.

The reality is that we face dilemma between turning into Haiti and staving this slide off by moving toward a Brave New World Society.

The only way to prevent the world from sinking into an abyss of Haitian proportions is to move closer to an ideal hierarchical society with hierarchies based on physical reality that determine reproductive quotas.

In light of this it seems incidents of  local corruption or incremental abridgements of liberty --the usual subjects of discussion on this blog -- are but insignificant quibbles in the grand scheme of history. Although such topics are pressing at the moment, they will not matter centuries into the future.

What shapes the horizon is what we've been ignoring all these years.

Monday, June 3, 2013

Navy Runs Facebook ad with Muslim Chaplain

Even though US foreign policy consists primarily of killing and oppressing Muslims, the US Navy has featured a man in Islamic head dress as the ideal Navy chaplain.

Maybe the Navy thought it could influence more Muslims to join on the margin with such an ad rather than Christians. 

But it would seem more reasonable to quit bombing Muslims abroad and deport every single one back to their home nations. It's nothing personal against individual Muslim people, as we've never had a bad experience with one, but consider the following thought experiment. Suppose you set out to create a nation from scratch. Would you throw together members of historically rivalrous religions? or have just one religion? Harmony would demand there be one. 

Christianity is the best religion and happens to be the majority religion in America, so Why purposefully dilute its pervasiveness by increasing adherents of alien religions via immigration? Often what spurs Islamic immigration is political instability in Islamic homelands which US military and/or CIA intervention frequently creates. That's the game: bomb and attack Muslims in their lands so more will come here and disrupt our cultural harmony. It's not an intentional effort but rather the effect of the usual elitist war hawks running roughshod over the world--even to the point of ruining Christendom. 

Decency requires that Christians strive for their children to grow up in a majority Christian America rather than one composed increasingly of Islamic and other oppositional groups. It should be noted that there are 2.7 million Muslims in the US today, which constitutes less than 1% of the total population, but they have high birthrates and are winning many converts, especially among the blacks. Moreover, over 100,000 immigrate to the US every year. It is only a matter of time until they constitute a significant minority.

To reject Islamic immigration on the basis of Muslims being more likely to become terrorists is stupid because about 0.001% of them do. However, 100% of Muslims are Muslims, and that ought to be reason enough for exclusion. Of course, the Muslims push for more Islamic immigration to America so they can be less of a minority, so why shouldn't Christians push back so they can retain their majority? Islamic nations are not dying to take in non-Muslim immigrants, especially not those from the third world.

When Muslims come to America, they become whimpering minorities, but in their own nations, they often assault you or worse if you even accidentally offend their sensibilities. In Islamic Republics, they don't look at Christians with a sense of infinite altruism like the naive liberal Christians look at them when they immigrate to historically Christian nations. You would never see Muslims in Iran, Libya, or Egypt promoting non-Islamic chaplains in their military.  

Deporting all Muslims would foster harmony among the people of the USA and retain their precious shared Christian past. This should be coupled with putting an end to drone strikes in Muslim lands and cutting all foreign aid to Israel--two policies which Muslims would readily support. It's nothing against Muslims personally but rather an attempt to preserve national identity for centuries to come.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

A Lickable Guy: Wilkes-Barre Policeman Makes National News
[Photo from FOX News]
May 9, 2013 -AP
A northeastern Pennsylvania city official says a blog photo showing a woman poised to lick the badge of a moonlighting officer outside a bar probably isn't a crime, but may violate department regulation.
Wilkes-Barre spokesman Drew McLaughlin says the police chief is investigating that photo and two others showing a provocatively dressed woman posing on the hood and the trunk of a police car.
The spokesman says no officers are pictured in the police cruiser photos, but that the photo of the woman poised to lick the officer's badge could violate regulations if the officer were actively participating in having the photo made.
Wilkes-Barre officers are allowed to moonlight to provide security at bars through a program run by the police union.
Based on evidence in the photo, police believe the badge licking occurred more than a year ago.

Commentary: All's fair in love and Wilkes-Barre
Several incidences in the Banana Republic of Wilkes-Barre involving the city's finest have preceded the revealing of this pic.
First, they have a creepy relationship with the city's contracted tow truck operator, Leo Glodzik of LAG Towing, and have reputedly harassed innocent people on his behalf. Wilkes-Barre police officers have received cars on loan from him in spite of being in a position to increase his earnings by having more cars towed--a direct conflict of interest. When reporters waited outside city hall to get some answers, the cops actually tried to issue them citations for trespassing.

Additionally, Wilkes-Barre city police refuse to enforce a provision of the contract with Glodzik which reportedly mandates that he submit logs of all his tows to police so they can ensure he is charging industry standard. Several years passed without Glodzik ever submitting any records, while he routinely charged double and triple the standard price for a tow.
Second, police Chief Jerry Dessoye is alleged to have frequented a crack house on McLean Street and to have refused to shut it down.
In short, many of the city's police are thugs. Most probably aren't, but if there were any good men in the department, there would have been some whistle-blowers. Perhaps the crime spilling into the city from New Jersey, New York, and Philly has caused a war-like atmosphere among the cops where morality takes a backseat to survival. If this is true, then the incompetent mayor has only made the city more attractive to criminals by building Coal Street Park near the locus of many violent crimes in the city. Oh well. All's fair in love and the new Wilkes-Barre.