Pattye Benson

Community Matters

A Couple of Political Points of Interest . . .

I found a couple of interesting political notes in the last couple of days . . .

On the Republican side: Phoenixville Councilman Ken Buckwalter (R) who is running in the Pennsylvania State House 157 primary race, has received an endorsement from longtime friend Ed Shanaughy. You may not know Ed personally but I bet that you know his restaurant – Our Deli in Paoli (with the large steer out front). Ed served as president of Paoli Fire Company for 35 years, recently stepping down (John Beatty is now president) to become the fire company’s Chairman of the Board. As a Director of Paoli Business and Professional Association, Ed serves with me on the Board as Director Emeritus.

Both Ken and Ed are local small business owners and have known each other for 30 years; in fact Ken attributes some of his early success with Buckwalter Framing to Ed’s support. Ken Buckwalter stated in his press release,

To have his [Ed Shanaughy] endorsement is gratifying. I had stated at the candidate interviews in early February that I live in one major end of the district and have done business for many years in the other. I am well-known throughout, and my public service is largely without controversy.”

On the Democrat side: I found this next political tidbit an interesting sidebar on the local Pennsylvania Senate primary race, Senator Arlen Specter (D) vs. Congressman Joe Sestak (D). Yesterday in a press release, Specter claimed that Sestak does not pay all his campaign staffers a living wage, or even the minimum wage, unless they are a member of his family. Specter’s report shows Sestak employees receiving what appears to be far less than the minimum wage. The response from Sestak’s camp is that those are all part-time employees who split their time; people who work 10 percent of their time for the campaign.

In a second press release today, Specter called for Sestak to clarify the reports, or turn himself into the authorities for violating minimum wage law requirements. Sestak’s email response to Specter’s latest pronouncement,

“It’s a shame with the enormous challenges facing our country that Senator Specter is spending his time working on this, rather than focusing on getting our economy in shape or reforming our healthcare system. This kind of petty diversion and focus on personal attacks is why so many people hate Washington-style politics.”

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  1. Where is Warren Kampf? Ken Buckwalter seems to have a real campaign and acts like he gives a damn about getting elected. Does Kampf even have a website? I would have thought that since he lost the party endorsement, he would be more out there — what’s the deal? Does he think that his ‘name’ is going to bring people out to vote for him in May?

    Personally, I can’t wait for Paul Drucker to get in to the mix. Paul’s probably just sitting it out to the primary to see which one he will be running aginst. Why waste valuable resources — I’m hoping that it is Drucker v Buckwalter.

    1. We understand you don’t like Warren. Seems like you guys had a back yard rumble when you were 8 and it has carried forth. I have had enough and it diminishes credibility.

      Drucker is a tireless worker for the community. Not always right though. I for one hope that Warren and the board right the ship and get on with the business of running the Township. That’s what we all want right? So remove your foot from their collective throats, keep vigilant and give it a rest. We will all have our say in the voting booth, as we just did.

      Don’t Democrats belong to country clubs too?

      1. It is dfficult to read your replies. Typically, you get your “inning “in with claptrap, then get to your thoughts. You, Mr. Petersen are a bully. So yes, I will tune you out. Your MO is born of arrogance, not self assuredness. You are just an insecure rude dude. But you think you are so damn perfect!

        See ya!

  2. I think it’s pretty obvious that the majority of the contributors to this website have a beef with Warran Kampf. So can we move on? Here is an article about Shaughnessy endorsing Buckwalter — and some people step up to talk about Kampf again. Whatever your view of him, he is well educated and has served tirelessly for the BOS for a long time. In looking at his resume, i would assume that where he fails is that he gets and clearly often follows very bad advice. So why don’t we let him start a campaign — and vote for your choice. Let’s not use this blog to turn every issue into a Kampf bashing…it’s really tiresome. I realize that sounds like I’m trying to dictate, but I’d rather hear things ABOUT candidates to help me consider them — I’m an independent so cannot vote in primaries, but would like to hear about other candidates and why you support them. I have pretty much figured out that on this blog anyway, no one supports Kampf.

    1. The board is rudderless without Judy. I think Michelle will eventually take that spot as she gains experience. She is a smart cookie but as a junior (new member) maybe feels she needs to bide her time. I would like to see her speak up more. She was right on the SDGC issue and has experience on the Planning Commission.

      Drucker is a good rep. I have been ridiculed for saying in the past I have never voted for a Democrat and probably never will. I was very close to voting for Drucker, except that I don’t understand why he is a Democrat. His good works and smart politics does not jive, in my opinion with Democratic philosophies. Disconnect.

      That being said, I often wonder why anyone would want to serve on the board. Some work more than others for the board and the community. I think warren does work hard, and often has been the voice of reason. He started slowly as the Chairman, but learned the ropes well as far as running the meetings. Agree, he needs less defence and more offense.

  3. Apolitical Observer comments: “…where he [Kampf]fails is that he gets and clearly often follows bad advice”.

    Exactly. It’s about acting on bad advice. There’s probably no shortage of this shortcoming in Harrisburg, and yet given a choice, most people would agree that the better choice in May and In November will be someone with a track record of good judgment.

    Mr. Kampf is clearly an intelligent, well-educated man with the kind of credentials that impress voters. But can he make tough calls on behalf of the 157th, or will he be unduly influenced by others with different agendas?

    It is worth your while to find out.

    1. PS.. intelligent folks make mistakes, (maybe not you though) and “old man”? Your mama really never taught you manners. I can imagine the TTDemocrats going NUTS if a Republican big mouth said what you said.. pattye benson would start 10 more blogs! I rest my case, counselor. Now, really, SEE YA!

      1. Chet,
        I believe that John Petersen is actually a REP not a DEM.

        Just so everyone is clear — Community Matters is my blog, and I do not take direction from anyone or from any political party. I decide what to write about based on what is of interest to me or on subjects that I believe are important to our community.

        I support good government, not party politics. If I have concerns about our elected officials, it is not based on their party affiliation, my problems/concerns are based on the specific issues. To me it makes no difference what their party affiliation is . . . only that there is ‘good government’ in Tredyffrin.

        In most cases I do not know the people who decide to leave their comments . . . don’t know whether they are REP or DEM and frankly, I don’t care. To me, engaging the community in conversation on important issues is what is the most important.

        1. Pattye:

          I’m not sure the REPs or the DEMs are anxious to claim John Petersen as one of their own ;)!

          Credit to you for providing a forum for discussion of local issues. You clearly put a lot of time into maintaining the site and your writing, which is excellent. Of course, there are issues that are more important to you than others (Wegmans?) and you have biases which influence your positions – and you let others present their viewpoints. But, until Mike or Chet or Christine or Sara… have a blog, we are more than happy to follow your lead.


      2. John
        You had your own blog for a very long time — and I stopped reading it because you clearly struggle with excessive anger. I have to say I agree with Chet here — you bully people. Not posting anonymously actually makes you a more theatening person — because your reputation precedes you so there is VOLUME to your rants.
        You clearly put a lot of thought into what you say and do — but righteous indignation wears most people out. Even your final statement to Chet to “get a clue” is pretty emblematic of your rants. This site is not about debating — it’s about discussing and sharing opinions. I’m guilty myself of trying to correct people — but you don’t correct them — you trash them. You can give all the reasons you want about SDGC for having an issue with WK, but the reality is that you don’t like him — he is employed, with yale and emory degrees. That doesn’t make him better than anyone, but seems to have firmly placed a chip on your shoulder.
        Enough Petersen therapy for today — just don’t want this blog to turn into the continual rant that your old blog did. I enjoy your pictures on your blog — think you are incredibly clever in your choices. But in this case, I’d trade your thousand words for a single picture…
        What was your background with TT? I keep hearing you referred to as a “former supervisor” — were you appointed and then didn’t run or did run and lost? Is there bitterness relating to that too?
        Pattye — I apologize that this doesn’t really add to the discussion — but I don’t want to see people say Cya and disappear when I believe they contribute. I’m just asking John to tone it down.

      3. john, im having a hard time keeping track of you delusions…
        you seem to be saying that kampf knows what he is doing, that everything he does is politically calculated on his part.

        but then you say that he is being controlled by paul olson:

        “He allows an old man in Paul Olson to pull his strings. Kampf is as mailable as aluminum foil.”

        but earlier, on your blog, you said that the ‘puppet master’ was actually CT:

        “And right there was the old man puppet master himself – C.T. Alexander”

        so which is it?

  4. What about 10+ hours a month year round in an elected and low-paying job for 6 years does not entitle any of them to be credited with tirelessly working? I mean Judy, I mean OLK — because unless you have sat in the seat (and not at home watching it on TV), and gone to the neighborhood meetings and responded to phone calls in your home when the street is plowed – and on and on — then I don’t think we should ignore the effort. I believe Kampf has two very young kids who would certainly enjoy his company on the nights when he is at meetings….so I will again say if you want to bash WK, find a reason, not just an attitude. I think the entire SDGC was a debacle — my point above was that this was about Shaughnessy endoring Buckwalter, and yet we still found a way to bash kampt…isn’t the endorsement news enough?

    1. To Apolitical observer –

      First off I think you drastically underestimate the time commitments made by the TT BOS. I bet they all wish that being a Supervisor was a ten hour per month job. Despite the big time commitment taking the position is something that they still chose to work toward. I am fairly certain that they, and their families, knew what the time commitment was going to be long before they even started their campaigns.

      Nonetheless it is appreciated when someone volunteers for the benefit of the community, and we are very lucky that we have MANY in this community who spend hundreds of hours of their own time every year to make our township the best it can be for everyone.

      Trouble here is that you have someone who is in a position of considerable power, influence, and responsibility who doesn’t respect the system, the process, or the people he was elected to serve. No one gets a free pass, automatic thanks, or congratulations merely because they spent X number of hours per month.

      I guess this was a long way of saying that simply putting in the time, any amount, does not equal a TIRELESS effort in my mind. At a minimum the time spent should be part of an EFFECTIVE and HONEST effort also. This is where Kampf has failed miserably on the TT BOS.

  5. I’ll ask the obvious here — if he was not effective and honest, WHY was he so easily re-elected? Seems to me that the people who aren’t effective are the voters. I think he’s just the new whipping boy in our ever declining economy that seems to induce bashing and bitterness wherever we go.

    1. Township Reader –

      If it is an obvious question why ask it? But anyway, i will respond. First off, you obviously aren’t paying much attention or putting much thought into your comments…

      Warren was not easily re-elected. He and Bob’s margin of victory in 2007 wasn’t as nearly big as you seem to think. In fact it wasn’t nearly as big as it should have been. The two incumbents were challenged well by two D’s who were first time candidates. In fact, both D candidates captured quite a few Republican voters in that race. Far from decisive.

      You can think what you want regarding the motivation of the opinions and criticisms toward Warren. I don’t think you know what you are talking about. Who has blamed Warren for our economic woes? What would the benefit be? You are really grasping.

  6. Malvern –
    I’ll say ouch since your tone was clearly meant to attack me…but perhaps you are the one who is reading superficially. I didn’t suggest anyone blamed Warren for our economy — I suggested that the angst of living in this economy has turned too many people bitter and anonymous blogs are the place where it’s easy to vent without accountability.
    Kampf has served six years and after his “meager” reelection he was Chair of the Supervisors…how can a victory not be as big as it should have been?
    So before any other phrase gets parsed — I know that supervisors work way more than 10 hours a month…I consider the reelection decisive…and I find people with axes to grind look for any opportunity to expand their vitriol I am front and center in criticizing LORK for their st. Davids vote — but perhaps I’m just overly tired of any opportunity to blame WK for any ills. Somehwere earlier JP has said we can no longer trust Kickline and donohue for “endorsing” kampf…. and then I called him a “tireless worker” as a member of the BOS…. Challenging my characterization by saying 10 hours doesn’t cover it hardly qualifies as debate….

    I want to ask questions and to hear about opinions…no more heated exchanges where we debate the accuracy/reality/effort of the poster. Pattye wrote today about civility…I don’t think this much testosterone without attribution can possibly be civil.

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