A little bit of this and that


I am so sick of the people who downgrade and disrespect my president, Joe Biden. I am shocked that I occasionally hear negativity from friends I trust, from Democrat friends that I love, and yet they have no problem badmouthing Joe. I don’t get it.

It started immediately, even before the debates, where, by the way, Joe held his own and deported himself admirably, enough that he beat Trump by seven million votes. The election was rigged, you say? The people who make the Dominion voting machines are currently suing Fox News for reporting this, suing for over a billion dollars, to the point that – if they win – it is said, could change the way the news is currently delivered.

The Trump propaganda machine began pushing the notion that Biden lived in his mom’s basement (huh?), they labeled him “Sleepy Joe”. They said he was too old and couldn’t govern because of it. I still hear this propaganda repeated even though Biden has done just the opposite. If you watched his press conference in Ukraine, you saw a cogent, intelligent, fiery president. He stood up for a sovereign nation under attack and challenged Putin to back off and promised to follow up on prominent war crimes. I did not see a “Sleepy Joe.”

Give the guy a break. He was elected president by a vast majority of voters. Stand up for him when he does something right, and guess what, if it is discovered on Hunter’s laptop (or anywhere else, for that matter) that Joe did something illegal, I’ll join you RussoTrumplicans and say, “Put him in jail.” (By the way, what happened to Trump’s campaign promise to put Hillary in jail? I mean he was the most powerful man in the world for four years? And couldn’t put some tiny, poor woman who was a criminal in jail?)

Last September, local news outlets reported that a company based in Newtown (Cincinnati Eastside) was found to be dumping hazardous waste material that leached into the Little Miami River. The owner of Evans Landscaping, Doug Evans, was given 60 days to start cleaning up the dump site. A settlement of $550,000 was levied. Mr. Evans had just been released from Federal Prison after serving only six months of an 18-month stint after being convicted of minority contracting fraud. He is a convicted felon. And yet it seems that a combination of the Highland County Land Bank, the Ohio Department of Development and the city of Hillsboro, Ohio saw fit to hire Mr. Evans and his company to clean up a very large barn on S.R. 73 at the end of Pea Ridge Road.

The property belongs to the city. Evans Landscaping was to “abate” the existence of asbestos at the site and complete the demolition of the barn. It was reported that Evans tendered the lowest bid of $60,000 to do the job. When it was noticed that the Evans bid was so much lower than the other two bidders — $148,000 from Fillmore Construction and $142,000 from CMJ Contractors — representatives of the land bank wondered if Doug Evans knew that asbestos removal and disposal was part of the project. One of the land bank reps said she would clarify with Evans just in case that might have slipped their purview. So we haven’t heard any more on that and the job is done, so I guess we can all assume that the convicted felon and owner of a company already hand-slapped for illegal dumping must have assured our local authorities that they would do the right thing. I guess Doug Evans learned his lesson? Is anyone going to follow up on this?

I saw an update today on the Larry Householder trial in Columbus. Householder is accused of accepting $60 million from First Energy Solutions to help them get a billion dollars of Ohio taxpayer money and as a result we got Ohio House Bill 6. It’s a complicated issue, but suffice it to say this fiasco is described as Ohio’s largest corruption scandal. Householder’s number one aide, Jeff Longstreth, who has already been convicted of racketeering, testified in court that Householder had a larger-than-life personality and demanded total loyalty. Lobbyist Neil Clark, who admitted to facilitating much of these transactions, decided his involvement was too much to bear and killed himself last February.

The gang called itself “Team Householder” and according to FBI investigator Blane Wetzel, the plan was not only self-enrichment but maybe, moreso, the pursuit of power. It is a given fact that the Republican Party controls much of the state of Ohio. Householder was the Speaker of the House at the time and, according to Wetzel, he planned to maintain his control for years to come with the $60 million he set out to accomplish his goal. One of the members of his group was former state Rep. Shane Wilkin. Wilkin was the author of the infamous House Bill #6. Wilkin’s campaign received $13,000 from First Energy and another $10,000 donation from Householder. He received a rebuke for this and was told to donate that amount to some charity. Will there be further repercussions? Who knows.

Agent Wetzel admitted in court that he had turned over to the jury a list of House candidates that were backed by Householder, but had not interviewed any of them yet. Yet.

I ran against Mr. Wilkin for the office of state senator. I got trounced. The Republican Machine made mincemeat out of me. It was certainly an education. While campaigning, I mentioned to a friend, a Republican, that he should vote for me. He said, no, he would vote the Republican line as he always did. When I protested and asked if didn’t he want to vote for an honest man, he looked me in the eye and coldly said, “If you get elected, you’ll be just like the rest of them.” Meaning I would fall into corruption and self-enrichment. It was like being hit with a bucket of cold water. I’d known this man since grade school, and I think he knew I was an honest person, that I would rather die than take dirty money. But for him, it was a given fact.

Politicians are dirty and they do dirty things. Follow the Householder trial and see for yourself how dirty things can be.

Garry Boone is a Hillsboro resident.

No posts to display