Stimulus Package Means New City Cops

The Manassas Police Department stands to gain four new officers under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.

According to a White House press release from the Office of the Vice President, the department could receive $766,912 to pay the officers’ salaries and benefits for three years if the city agrees to keep the officers on for a fourth year.

Police Chief John J. Skinner applied for the grant in April with the approval of the city council.

“The city manager informed the city council when I applied for this grant and we made it clear that there was a commitment to retain the officers beyond the first three years of the grant,” Skinner said.

Skinner will soon ask the city council for permission to accept the grant. Manassas Mayor Harry J. “Hal” Parrish said accepting federal money requires careful thinking.

“Anytime you receive grant funding and there’s strings attached, you obviously have to discuss and consider the strings,” Parrish said.

Manassas News and Messenger

Kudos for Chief Skinner for knowing the money was out there and going after it.  Hopefully the City of Manassas Council will approve this plan without further ado.   The county has increased violent crime and this phenomena is bound to spill over into the City. 

The City was pleasantly surprised.  They were hoping for half.  Nothing ventured, nothing gained.  Hopefully, those strings that are attached won’t be too objectional to the City council members.  More cops on the street means less crime.  Less crime in the City means less crime in the county. 

Corey Turns Up His Nose at Money

I try to find nice things to say about Corey, I honestly do. He just makes it such a difficult job. This latest affair with the mic is no exception. It seems that the county is slated to receive $122 million dollars from ARRA. (America Recovery and Reinvestment Act). Considering our real estate woes that have produced extreme revenue difficulties, I would think most Prince Williamites would be jumping for joy. Not Corey.

According the News and Messenger, Corey is stepping on his lower lip because we get this money.

Prince William County has been allotted an estimated $122 million of federal stimulus funds, and more could be on the way, but chairman of the board Corey Stewart said taxpayers ought to think twice before extending any thanks to the government.

“It strikes me, taxpayers have a right to be angry here. It’s the young people [who are] ultimately going to have to pay this back,” he said, at a recent Board of Supervisors update on the disbursement of dollars from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, a $787 billion federal package that was signed into law Feb. 17.

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“Birthers” must be mashugana, as my Bubbie would say!!!!!

Birthers refers to those people who apparently believe President Obama is not rightfully our sitting President, for those of you who don’t know what mashugana means, it’s Yiddish for crazy.  How many time does the state of Hawaii have to verify President Obama’s birth certificate.  Will the third time be the charm? The congressmen in this very aggressive interview with Chris Mathews looks VERY uncomfortable to me, like he has been set up to do something he may not totally believe in, just my perspective though.

When George Bush won the presidency in 2000, by the final ruling of the Supreme Court, I accepted that he was my President and THAT was certainly a conflicted election!  That is how this country works, its truly a miracle that we have such peaceful elections. Now it’s time for the other side to start governing and accept that they lost. 

I love how Chris Mathews refuses to let Rep. Campbell off the hook and insist he answer the question whether HE believes President Obama is a U.S. citizen. By the end of the interview, the congressmen capitulates and finally answers that he believes President Obama is indeed a citizen of the United States. 

Jackson Miller & BVBL/Letiecq

To acknowledge that Jackson has received a coveted endorsement from the Virginia Education Association and to ignore this train wreck over on BVBL would be wrong. Letiecq’s recent discussion thread on, entitled – “Jeanette Rishell’s Bizarre Choice Of Used Condom Girl” is simply disgusting. And as a Republican, I find Letiecq’s behavior abhorrent. In my opinion, Letiecq’s behavior extends beyond simple petulance and clearly traverses the proverbial line that should not be crossed. And, while, I acknowledge that Jackson Miller has no control over Letiecq, he does have control over his own message. The only way you stop this kind of electioneering is for Miller to speak out in opposition. A footnote disclaimer on the bvbl website that Letiecq is not ‘part of the Miller campaign’ is not sufficiently acceptable. Granted, taking a stand takes moral fortitude because Miller could conceivably alienate some people. But Miller should ask himself, is it the right thing to do? In my opinion, Jackson Miller should take the opportunity to make a public statement so that it is known that he does not condone these tactics. John McCain denounced the Swift Boat attacks on John Kerry. And, I believe it is called for in this instance.

Jackson Miller Receives an A+ from VEA

Congratulations to Delegate Jackson Miller for landing the endorsement of the Virginia Education Association on July 24, 2009. It is a big one! The vetting for this endorsement is not easy and Delegate Miller is to be commended for his ability to think of Virginia’s children rather than partisan politics.

Delegate Miller attempted to give School Boards the authority to use their funds to provide housing assistance grants in an effort to make housing more affordable for teachers. Other pro-education bills he attempted to pass were HB 2139 which would have allowed school boards to hire retired cops as security officers on a full time basis.

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N&M: Manassas City Graffiti Removal

Letter to the Editor published July 25, 2009 in the News & Messenger from Cindy Brookshire.

City can’t pay for graffiti removal

This is in response to the Sunday July 19 editorial, “You Want It Cleaned? You Pay For It”

Look, the City of Manassas can’t pay to have graffiti removed from private property. The money just isn’t there. But at the same time, as a matter of public safety, it needs to be removed promptly
because it is a welcome mat for criminal activity. Either the property owner needs to remove it or local government needs to remove it and charge the owner. Either way, you pay.

That said, I’m all for some compassionate community volunteers coming forward in the City of Manassas to form a group like the county’s Graffiti Spotters — volunteers who clean up graffiti for those who can’t afford to pay. The Prince William Clean Community Council can show you how to model the program. I’ll gladly help out if someone will lead the way.

If you want to learn more about why graffiti needs to be reported and removed promptly, come to the next meeting of Weems Neighborhood Watch. Detective Wayne Bombara, a member of the Northern
Virginia Gang Task Force, will give a presentation on gangs and graffiti on Thursday, July 30 from 7 to 9 p.m. at the Manassas City Police Department, 9518 Fairview Avenue in Manassas.

Now is also a great time to join a Neighborhood Watch or start one. In Prince William County, a huge National Night Out Against Crime event will be held on Saturday, August 1 from 1:30 to 5:30 p.m. at
Connaughton Community Plaza behind the McCoart Center. In the City of Manassas, the Georgetown South Community Council, along with their Neighborhood Watch, is holding their National Night Out
Against Crime event on Tuesday, August 4 from 6 to 9 p.m. at 9444 Taney Road with free food and games.


Gates-Gate: A Teachable Moment?

Has President Barack Obama caught Biden-disease? Does he have foot in mouth syndrome?

Wednesday night, during a press conference on health care reform, the president fielded one last question where he was asked about the arrest of his friend, Harvard Professor Henry Gates, Jr. President Obama told reporters that he didn’t know all the facts. But he said, “the Cambridge police acted stupidly in arresting somebody when there was already proof that they were in their own home.”

Those words brought about great public debate, especially after the country focused on what actually had happened during this altercation. According to CNN:

Crowley wrote in the Cambridge police report that Gates refused to step outside to speak with him, and when Crowley told Gates that he was investigating a possible break-in, Gates opened the front door and exclaimed, “Why, because I’m a black man in America?”

The report said Gates initially refused to show the officer identification, but eventually produced a Harvard identification card, prompting Crowley to radio for Harvard University Police.

“While I was led to believe that Gates was lawfully in the residence, I was quite surprised and confused with the behavior he exhibited toward me,” Crowley said, according to the report.

Gates was arrested for “loud and tumultuous behavior in a public space” and was released from police custody after spending four hours at the police station.

Officer Jim Crowley also said references were made about his mother. He has refused to apololgize. He says he followed protocol and that he is not a racist. Crowley enters the fray with some very impressive credentials, especially in the field of racial profiling. He has taught a course on the subject for several years.

Here is President Obama’s response:

Did he go far enough? Did President Obama equivocate? Should he apololgize? Was this incident reflective of more serious problems?

Is Our Housing Hope Stirring?

A friend emailed me an interesting article from the Washingon Post yesterday entitled “Improving Housing Market Stirs Hope.” She said:

I think it’s the first time I’ve heard a real estate agent actually connecting the resolution with our foreclosure rate – at least in print.

I know we have batted this issue around on the blog before and that the Smutster has speculated that PWC is a real real estate forerunner, but is this a different note from MSM?

According to the Washington Post:

Residential sales in Prince William County are up, and home prices are stabilizing — positive changes, county officials said, for a locality once dubbed the epicenter of the region’s foreclosure crisis.

“We’re cautiously optimistic,” said Christopher E. Martino, county finance director, who spoke to county supervisors Tuesday. “The rate of foreclosure activity has decreased substantially, activity has picked up and our inventory is declining.”

Through May, county officials had recorded 1,514 foreclosures, down from 2,319 recorded for the same period last year. Martino said the county had about 6,500 foreclosures last year.

Real estate experts said several factors were to blame for the rise in foreclosures last year, including unscrupulous lending practices and the county’s anti-illegal immigration policies, which drove away some Hispanics.

Martino said the county was also growing faster and had more affordable housing, which created momentum before the housing market collapsed nationwide.

The market turnaround “is obviously good news,” said Corey A. Stewart (R-At Large), chairman of the Board of County Supervisors. “A couple of us said Prince William would be the first in and the first out. Now there is . . . finite data that we are coming out of the housing recession.”

Many of us have questioned why Prince William County was hit so much sooner and so much harder compared to other nearby jurisdictions by foreclosures. We held top superlative honors for a fairly long time in Virginia.

What do our contributors think? How does it help us if houses sell for 1/3 of what they were worth 2 years ago? Does that run our property values down even more? Did the Immigration Resolution help bring us quicker and harder to many of the ugly aspects of the housing crisis? Some of our politicians and blogger seemed to want it both ways in the past. They wanted to claim responsibility for cleaning up PWC with the Immigration Resolution and at the same time blame the immigrant community, specifically ‘illegals’ for our foreclosure problems. Which is it? What say you?

Run Bulls, Run! How about that Nasdaq!

Happy Weekend. Let’s look at something positive. The Nas has been on a roll! 12 straight days in the black. Earnings reports from tech stocks have been excellent for the most part. Apple, eBay, Qualcomm, and Intuitive Surgical (ISRG) all tipped in well above predicted. They beat the street. Yesterday ISRG pounded every other stock by going up over $45 per share. One anti regular had to keep smacking himself to make sure it was all real.

The Nasdaq hasn’t been on such a roll for a long time. Is this a good sign of economic recovery? Doesn’t the stock market always herald how investors feel things will be 6 months from now? Not all that glitters is gold however. The winning streak might have a temporary setback today as investors do some profit taking.

Additionally, Microsoft, one of the giants of the Nasdaq, had a very bad quarterly report yesterday. Earnings were down and were reflective of a global economy in crisis. It will be interesting to see what happens today. Will we keep our earnings and will profit taking be a blip on the radar, or is the overall stock run that we have been experiencing since March going to come to a screeching halt? Will the Microsoft report be a spoiler because of its influence in the tech world? Asian markets are looking good today. The Dow and the S & P are all sporting that upward green arrow! Run Bulls Run!

Readers, contributors, what stocks have you been watching? Has everyone jumped back into the market or are you thinking about sticking a toe in? Who has some great stocks, mutual funds or ETFs to report that maybe have flown under the radar? Share! Inquiring greedy minds want to know.

287(g) Changes to Memorandum of Agreements(MOA’s)

Last week the Department of Homeland Security announced policy changes to the 287(g) program that addresses the concerns that many people have with the 287(g) program, namely that it could be used as a means to target non-criminal individuals as a means to initiate immigration removal proceedings. These changes reflect the intent of the policy which was to remove serious criminals.

Hopefully, the changes will also mandate a better accounting of how many people are actually deported. Currently there is no mechanism to determine those numbers which makes the assertions by the Chairman that the County has ‘deported’ 1500 individuals absurd. Rather, 1500 individuals have been reprimanded to ICE, transferred to Fairfax County, processed and then the majority of them have been released and are back home by dinnertime.

More information can be found here –

ICE Fact Sheet
DHS Press Release, July 10, 2009
Policy or Politics? DHS Changes and Expands 287(g) Program

9500 Liberty Film trailer

9500 Liberty film trailer

Sharing an e-mail from Eric Byler —

Dear Friends,

Annabel Park and I have a documentary coming out this fall.  9500 Liberty explores the social, political, and economic fallout from one of America’s fiercest battles over immigration policy at the local level.  We feel that our film will help illuminate what is really at stake in the upcoming national debate over immigration policy.

Watch our trailer:

Please share our new website:

Please join our Facebook group at:

And/or please follow us on Twitter:

Eric Byler & Annabel Park

They Must Be Everywhere!

A friend of mine sent a brief email tonight stating: ” You’ve got to see this video from Delaware.”

Congressman Mike Castle (R-DE) was attempting to have what appears to be a town meeting. You just have to see it for yourself.

Does this seem like a bad flashback to anyone else? What I find the saddest about ignorance like this is that President Obama’s grandfather served under Patton during World War II. How dare that shrieking woman be that disrespectful to Ralph Dunham’s service to our country!

I can honestly say I have never heard the Pledge of Allegiance used to drown out a speaker. I guess there is a first for everything. I suppose these good Americans never heard or understood the idea that while you might not like the man, you respect the office?

By the way, who is PeeBo and what does that mean?

More First Amendment Challenges?

Our contributors had some rather surprising reactions to the thread posted about a month ago on Sarkozy’s pronouncement about the burka not belonging in France.  A similar argument might be moving across the big pond.  This is one of those articles I will just post.  You be the judge. 

Washington Post 7/19/09

Oregon’s Fashion Police

Should your child’s teacher wear a turban, a hijab, a kippah or other “religious dress’? The state of Oregon doesn’t think so. The Oregon Workplace Religious Freedom Act, now awaiting the governor’s signature, requires all employers to let workers wear religious items with one exception: “No teacher in any public school shall wear any religious dress while engaged in the performance of duties as a teacher.”

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The Eagle Has Landed–One small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.

Forty years ago today we heard those words that we will never forget:

“The Eagle has landed” and  “One small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.” Those now-famous words by Neil Armstrong will always be remembered as what’s good about the 60’s and what was good about America.

To accomplish such a feat was thought to be almost impossible. America gained world-wide respect. Millions around the world watched our accomplishments. Today, space travel is much more global. In those days it was a race between 2 nations: USA and USSR. Regardless, to most of us back then, the journey seemed impossible, unbelievable; we stared in disbelief as we heard those words when two Americans walked on the surface of the moon. It left us filled with pride but also feeling numb.

Here are the highlights of the Apollo 11 Mission. In it you will see and hear the famous words as well as see Walter Cronkite’s reaction to the lunar landing. He was like a school boy.


There are 3 videos. The first shows the highlights of the Apollo 11 Mission.


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