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June 21, 2010 - 11:41am

Campaign Trail

posted by C. M. Barons in Candidate, Chris Barons, C. M. Barons.

This weekend was particularly rewarding.  I had the opportunity to meet voters in three counties, folks attending the Stafford Fireman's Parade, a group of voters in the Town of Murray and attendees at the St. John Lutheran Church hosted Hamlin Strawberry Festival.  Not only did I walk away with a fulfilled sense of voter sentiment, I purchased a delicious bowl of shortcake while at the Strawberry Festival.

As much as the 139th is diverse in its four-county membership and the unique communities that comprise the district, voters seem to share the same sense of urgency.  The state is in dire need of responsible leadership.  The most discerning question that was often repeated, "Are you the incumbent?"

Incumbency may be a focus, and "Throw the bums out," has been a rallying cry for some time; I do not intend to invest my time exploiting that single itch.  The voters deserve a comprehensive action plan for righting state government.  I do not intend to rely on slogans, generalities and gladhanding to engage district voters.  My approach to the campaign is my approach to the business of state: ideas, study, dialogue, study, alliances, concensus.  I don't mean to oversimplify the legislative process.  I have a long history conducting negotiations, and I know the dynamics well.  Please anticipate a detailed look at my policies.

I hope everyone had time to celebrate Father's Day.  I did so vicariously.  The weather was spot-on!  See you along the campaign trail...

Chris

JoAnne Rock
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How did you answer the question, "Are you the incumbent"? Did you respond with: A: No, I am running against Republican incumbent Steve Hawley. or B: No, but I have been endorsed by the incumbent Democratic majority. I could be wrong, but I think that the "throw the bums out" rallying cry refers to the incumbent Democratic majority. I'm beginning to understand how voter ignorance played a key role in Alvin Greene's win in South Carolina.
C. M. Barons
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Frankly, I wouldn't portray any of the voters I spoke with as ignorant. I didn't request IQ scores, and most who inquired of my office-holding status didn't care about party affiliation.
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While on the subject, you and Charlie Mallow seem to share a low estimation of local intelligence.
JoAnne Rock
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I wouldn't presume to portray any of the voters you spoke with as ignorant either. I fail to see the correlation between IQ and intelligence and being an informed voter. One doesn't need a high IQ to be an informed voter. I can't speak for Charlie Mallow, but I don't measure people by their IQ.
Bob Harker
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"My approach to the campaign is my approach to the business of state: ideas, study, dialogue, study, alliances, concensus." All nice and well, but as is the norm in Albany, "action" is not part of the plan.
Charlie Mallow
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C.M. it’s good to see that you have taken our advice and are no longer sequestered. I like the update you gave as well. It’s written in plain English and doesn’t speak down to the reader.
Charlie Mallow
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So, how do you intend on ”negotiating” when your leadership does all its talking behind a closed door with only three people in the room?
George Richardson
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CM, never do it in writing but take a page from the Karl Rove handbook and say: "Yes maam, can I kiss your grandbaby?" whenever anyone asks if you are the incumbent. If it happens to be a grandma with a grandbaby, you might get an extra vote.
George Richardson
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In Texas all you have to say is: "I'm for guns, God, minimum wage jobs, Nascar, the Red Communist Chinese, killing Coyotes (yuck yuck, it's an inside Texass joke) and hating Obama the Kenyan. I hope y'all (I'm a neo-Texan, I have to say that) but for you'se guys I'll say you'se guys, don't go that route unless you have to, but if you have to, I say do it. Appealing to the lowest common denominator is a no fail proposition when it comes to democracy and the voters almost anywhere in the United States. Yee haw!
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He will not be doing any "negotiating", at least not with Republicans. Mr. Silver does the negotiating, and CM knows it. CM's campaign manager even told us what happens to Democrats that step out of line, with a Buffalo area Assemblyman as an example. And with CM, not even being a registered Democrat he will not be treated any different. CM will toe the line, or be ignored. CM sounds good, but I wish he'd admit how little influence he would really have until a state constitutional convention is held and the Assembly is reformed.
George Richardson
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I got a little off topic there, sorry.
Howard B. Owens
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John, I imagine he would have about as much influence as any Republican in the Assembly.
John Roach
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Howard, That's my point.
Howard B. Owens
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The way you phrase it, John, it sounds more like an attack, "I wish he'd admit..." are loaded words. Shouldn't every Republican admit that? Why single out CM to state the obvious? It just seems like a neutral issue.
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John, maybe your desire for a different state government will come to fruition come January. In Andrew Cuomo's New NY Agenda the first thing listed on the Five Step Program for a New NY -- "1. CLEAN UP ALBANY -- We must restore honor and integrity to government with tough new ethics standards, expanded disclosure requirements, independent investigations to root out and punish corruption, and an overhaul of campaign finance laws. We must remove legislative redistricting from partisan elected politicians and place it in the hands of an independent commission that works only for the people. And we must hold a constitutional convention - A People's Convention - to rewrite the Constitution and make these changes immediately because we cannot wait any longer for the state legislature to act." You can download the entire book and read it cover to cover here http://www.andrewcuomo.com/issues_and_agenda
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Howard, No Republican has any influence with Mr. Silver, and Hawley has said that before. They are shut out. My point is, so are most Democrats. CM has not admitted that and I think he should. I just don't buy his "elect me and I'll fix everything". Lorie, I have no doubt at all that Andrew Cuomo will win. The question is will he keep his word? We have to wait and see.
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Posted by John Roach on June 21, 2010 - 4:44pm Howard, No Republican has any influence with Mr. Silver, and Hawley has said that before. They are shut out. My point is, so are most Democrats. CM has not admitted that and I think he should. I just don't buy his "elect me and I'll fix everything". John, Please reference the quote, "elect me and I'll fix everything".
Howard B. Owens
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I'm with Bea, John, where has C.M. even so much as implied that?
John Roach
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Howard, That use of the " was my way of trying to sum up my impression that CM is saying that by electing him, his study, dialog, negotiating, alliance, etc, will fix everything. That just sounds like what we always hear and read. Not being a journalism major, I probably misused the ".
Charlie Mallow
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I am not going to let a good turn go unrewarded. Even though CM's repost was a bit vindictive and he was looking to put negative words in my mouth, I'm feeling better about him as a candidate. He at least responded and that is a good thing.
Mark Janofsky
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Mr. Barons: "The most discerning question that was often repeated, "Are you the incumbent?"" Anyone who asked you if you are the incumbent, is ignorant! How often was the question asked?
Howard B. Owens
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John, I think you're putting a lot of red on the herring. Candidate A can say that he's put a lot of work into his platform, study, thought, discussion and research, etc., and still not even come close to saying, "I'm going to fix everything." It doesn't follow logically that somebody says, "I have some good ideas," to mean, "I'm going to fix everything." I'm not defending C.M., only reacting to the idea that in my view you're trying to portray him in a way that doesn't fit the evidence. It's the same sort of argument I've had with Barons about some of his characterizations of Hawley. It's very easy to argue against the person you imagine somebody to be. Much harder to argue against the real person.
Mark Potwora
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I would just like to know what qualifications CM has..Has he had any leadership roles..Has he managed any business..What is his schooling and back ground..I would just like to hear more about him..Why should he be elected..He seems to have come out of nowhere ..What other political offices has he held...How long does he plan to serve..The big question is why does he think he can make a difference..He does seem to have the passion...Just wondering if he has the skin thick enough for this..Glad to see he is not letting the other Chris do all the talking for him..
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Howard, You may be right and to be up front and to make it clear, if I hadn’t already, I do not support CM. CM made fun of Hawley’s weight. I don’t like people who make fun of other physical appearance. If Hawley wears an ugly tie or shirt, fine, let him take the hit and I might help. But making fun of somebody being heavy is over the line for a person wanting to represent us in Albany. Mr. Barons prides himself in his use of language, so it was no error that he did it. True, he apologized after being called on it, but it tells me a bit about his character that he did it at all. The use of Hypocrite Hawley name calling. Again, that tells me a bit about Barons. There are enough name callers in Albany already. We don't need any more. Policy wise, I cannot support anyone who supports taxing soft drinks, which he does. To me, that’s just the food police trying to control what I eat or drink. Again, personal opinion. And, while military service is no criteria for elected office and military service is not an indicator that a person will make a good legislator, it is a positive for me. And Steve Hawley was an Army Lieutenant. Just a personal thing with me.
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I didn't take John's quoted text as a verbatim quote. I assumed he was using a "scare quote", a common literary device used to indicate irony or sarcasm. Had he said it in person, he probably would have used Steve Martin's famous "air quotes" to indicate his skepticism. If he's guilty of anything, it's using double inverted commas instead of single to frame the scare quote; but that's just a minor technicality. He can always go back and edit.
JoAnne Rock
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Oops! Double post.
Howard B. Owens
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John, that's all detailed criticism, which is far more useful broadsides, from either side. And you know I never liked the "Hypocrite Hawley," which I've always found simplistic and not reality based.
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Mark, I asked about qualifications as well and my questions went unanswered. Those questions are not going to go away. How do you run for state wide office without business or even political experience? State office holders are sharks, you need some proven skills to survive. John, the early negativity turned me off to CM "I am News" Barons as well PS. The quotes are used correctly.
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I posted the state health dept. phone number on this site immediately after my own call objecting to the tax.
C. M. Barons
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My resume- 25+ years public school support technician: *Service/maintain security and communication systems *Planning & Scheduling of support allocation *Inventory/maintain audio-visual equipment *Budget preparation *Supervision *Development of District Technology Plan *Staff development, Student Instruction *Committee service *13 years, president of Support Staff Association, contract negotiation, personnel issues and mediation Education- High School diploma, Byron-Bergen CSD, 1972 Regents diploma: Science AA Humanities/Social Science, Genesee Community College, 1974 BA Communication Arts, SUNY at New Paltz, 1976 Certificate- Electronics 1983 Employment History- Technical Assistant, Am. Red Cross, Oct. 2005 - present Audio Visual Technician, Elba Central School 1977 – 1978, 1979 – June 2005 Technical Assistant, Genesee Comm College, 1978 - 1979 Dock Foreman, Comstock Foods, June - August 1975 Quality Control Lab, Gerber Products, Oct. 1973 - August 1974 Summer Youth Employment Counselor, Genesee Co. Job Development Agency, June - August 1998, 1999 & 2000 Telecom Installer/Contractor, Verizon Specialty Division, July - Aug. 2005 Sports Editor, The Daily News, Oct. - April 1976 Business Experience- Owner, Genesee Audio, 1979 - 2005 Political & Civic Experience- Current Candidate for 139th Assembly Member Genesee Community College Association Member G-W BOCES Media Council Drafted SUNY Asian Studies Proposal and member of presentation delegation to Vice Chancellor Student Housing Liaison for GCC Genesee County Primary Campaign, Jerry Brown for President Twice Candidate for Bergen Village trustee Candidate for Byron Bergen CS Board of Ed Member: Southern Poverty Law Center, Common Cause Letters- Author, In the Midst Of, NAWP, 2005 Ancient Egypt: Gateway Culture, G-E magazine, 2000 Co-Founder/Editor, FRST, web-based first amendment rights group, 2000 - 2005 Regular editorial/letters/opinion contributor to local newspapers, blogs
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Chris, you're up early! You should be getting some sleep. I just noticed this thread and can't pass up the opportunity to respond to some of the posts. With regard to C.M.'s "qualifications" to run for office...I appreciate that he posted his resume and a summary of his experience, but without having done that, he already possesses the single qualification required to run for office. He's a CITIZEN. AND, he's putting his 'money' where his mouth is and I for one very much appreciate that he's willing to do that. For those who have criticized him for his use of language, why is it a bad thing for someone to have an obvious command of same? For those who have observed that he will have no influence with Sheldon Silver and the "leadership", why do you assume that once the election is over that Mr. Silver and the "leadership" will have been re-elected? I am pleased to observe that, more and more, the citizens of this state have had enough of the status quo and increasingly are espousing the idea that the incumbents have to go. Call me naive, but I would not necessarily agree that Mr. Silver or any number of other incumbents will still be members of the legislature following the November election. And that would indeed be a good thing. It is most certainly time for a change in New York state and I happen to believe that the voters can't wait to get into the voting booth to make that change happen. C.M., good luck in your quest.
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David, the qualifications are to support someones vote. Your right, just about anyone can run for office and they do. This is were we sperate the warm bodies from the achievers. I like to see private sector job experience and for a state post, executive level experience. Being elected to a prior smaller post would also be something I would like to see. In my opinion, there are lots of words above but, none is a qualification for a vote for state office. Steve Hawley is far more qualified and he will get my vote again.
Dave Meyer
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Charlie, I'm actually shocked by what I hear you saying. With all due respect, what qualifications did you have when you ran for City Council? My recollection is that you were elected with a groundswell of citizen support...a member of a 'minority' party (at least in these parts). And yet, you were elected president of the City Council and did a fantastic job while a member there, displaying tremendous leadership, and when the job was done, you walked away. Why do you assume that if Chris Barons is elected the result would be any different from your experience. I gather from reading your posts in this forum, that you learned a lot from your experience while a council member and I appreciate that you've "been there" in the halls of the legislature. I would think that you of all people would be supportive of a citizen who is willing to put his ass on the line to try to change the status quo. Your raising the issue of whether Steve Hawley is more qualified than Chris Barons to be a state office holder has me baffled. Why is Hawley more qualified? Because his dad was a member of the assembly? Because he's the current office holder? Because he owns a business? I just don't see it. You should know as well as anyone does that our government was designed to be run by CITIZENS who aspire to elected office for the public good, not by politicians who view it as their source of employment. In my view, that's what Chris Barons is doing and I'm thankful to have that choice. I guess we're going to cancel each other out, because Chris has my vote for the reasons stated above.
Charlie Mallow
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David, CM is more than qualified for a town board position and I see nothing wrong with him building on that experience for the future. Why would anyone believe he is ready now? He is going to have to deal with people who will eat his lunch in Albany. Your vote would send someone who is unprepared.
John Roach
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Dave, You left out that Hawley was also involved in Town of Batavia government and was a Genesee County Legislator. One thing good abut both Hawley and Barons is that they have real jobs. Hawley's advantage (to me) is that he runs a business, employs people, and understands the red tape involved in doing business in New York State.
Dave Olsen
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Good job, David Meyer. Personally, I have not decided if I'll vote for C.M. or not. But, we need new ideas and fresh faces. His lack of political background, to me is a good thing. I am keeping an open mind.
Dave Meyer
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Charlie and John, You know one thing that amuses me greatly? I voted for BOTH of you when you ran for office. Why? Because you weren't incumbents. Because the ideas you each expressed during your campaign resonated with me. Charlie, I'm glad you were elected (as I've stated many times before here). The City of Batavia is better of for your having held office. I frankly thought that YOU might be in Chris Barons' shoes right now, but I guess you were burnt after your experience. John, I wish you had been elected because I think the ideas you ran on are still issues in the city. All of that having been said, I see Chris Barons as a breath of fresh air whose "lack of experience" is a good thing. One assumption that everyone seems to be making is that there won't be HUGE change in the state legislature. I've said it before and it bears repeating. The voters are pissed off this year with good reason and I frankly don't believe that the current members of the legislature have ANY IDEA what's in store for them in November. Hopefully, there will be MANY changes in the incumbency, including the aforementioned Mr. Silver. If you assume that will happen then you can assume that there will be many new members who will have heard the voice of the voters and realize that if they don't work together to fix this state and the way things are done that their tenure will be short.
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Not to take sides in the election, but to defend democracy. In due respect, Charlie, the idea that a candidate needs to have done this or that to qualify for office is obnoxious. The only qualification for office is a willingness to serve. Period. If a ditch digger comes along and can convince me he'd be a good rep, I'd vote for him.
Charlie Mallow
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David, I appreciate your support when I was in office. As for me running agian, my days in elected office are over. I did learn a lot during my time and the most important is that politics has very little need for people with good intentions. There are too many people looking to get something personal from public office and too little regard for the truth. I understand your position and I do not want to talk you out of your support for CM. The root of my problem with CM was the past personal negativity that he as shown toward Steve combined with his prior refusal to be open in his communication. When I was in office, I always went out of my way to explain where I stood on city issues and I have little respect for those who are not willing to take the heat of public questioning. It seems that CM has turned the corner in the last couple days and is responding to questions. I respect that, it shows character.
Charlie Mallow
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Howard, I can have any qualification I chose for my vote. That is my American right. Anyone can run, my vote has qualifications and so does yours.
Howard B. Owens
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Charlie, there's a difference between, "this is my personal criteria on who to vote for," vs. saying somebody isn't qualified to run because of "XYZ." One is personal choice, the other is trying to de-legitimatize a candidacy. Your personal choice I respect, but I'll argue against trying to de-legitimatize any candidate based purely on personal preference.
Charlie Mallow
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Howard, a vote is a personal thing and this is a site filled with personal opinions. All of my opinions are personal.
Howard B. Owens
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Charlie, you wrote, "David, CM is more than qualified for a town board position and I see nothing wrong with him building on that experience for the future. Why would anyone believe he is ready now? He is going to have to deal with people who will eat his lunch in Albany. Your vote would send someone who is unprepared. " That isn't stating some personal criteria. That's telling other people how to vote on a qualification that you're more then welcome to apply to your own voting choice, but is BAD for democracy to hold out as some sort of standard we should all abide by, which is how you phrased it. You didn't say, "this is how I'm making MY choice." You phrased it to explicitly state that that's how we should all vote. I just totally object to the idea that a candidate should have some grand resume. You're welcome to make that your choice, but I will continue to argue against the idea that such criteria is some sort of standard that we should all judge a candidate on.
Charlie Mallow
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Howard, politics is personal. A politician is asking for a job and everyone has the personal right to have qualifications for their vote. People’s personal opinions are what drive elections and campaigns. If my personal opinion matters to another person they will take it into consideration when they form their own opinion. That’s why we have political debate. There are no laws based around the qualifications to receive someone’s vote in an election. Choice is based on the personal qualifications of the voter, whatever they may be. People’s opinions are sometimes based on what they have learned or gathered from other people’s opinions. What are you trying to debate??? The idea that other people’s personal opinions shouldn’t determine who wins elections? You better ban Fox News, MSNBC and all the Sunday talk shows then.
bud prevost
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One reason C.M. intrigued me in announcing his candidacy is he's a normal guy. He's a citizen who is walking instead of talking, and I respect that. I don't believe our forefathers ever envisioned "career politicians". I think the idea was doctors, farmers, bankers, really anyone, could choose to serve their community by holding public office for a couple of years, then return to private life. So the lack of political experience doesn't mean anything negative to me at all. I also look forward to Andrew Cuomo following through on some of his initiatives, with a Constitution Convention and government consolidation the primary focus. While I am not a dem, I am open to seeing what positive effect Cuomo will have on our state. Mr. Barons, thanks for the return to commenting. I absolutely believe this will help you, not hinder you. And I am amazed (though I shouldn't be) that folks don't know who represents them in Albany. We need to stop being lethargic sheeple and really try to send the best we can to the senate and assembly.
John Roach
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Howard, The idea of a resume for office, especially higher office, has become the norm. Andrew Cuomo has used his resume as the main reason to vote for him. Without his resume, his only qualification other than being willing to run, is that his father was governor. A resume is not necessary, but it doesn't hurt either.
Howard B. Owens
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John, I'm not saying it doesn't hurt. Certainly, if you have a resume you're going to run on it. I'm just saying it's not a qualification for office, and I object to trying to make it a qualification. I remember two years ago, one of the candidates for State Senate (a Democrat from Erie, I believe) made a big deal of it on his Web site: He was the only candidate in the primary with a college degree. I've no problem with a candidate saying, "I've got a degree from such-and-such" ... but to knock the other guy for a lack of degree is both arrogant and irrelevant.
Charlie Mallow
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Howard, you are saying very clearly you do not believe someone has the right to discuss a person’s qualifications for a high paying government job? There is much made about a person’s military service as well. Are you saying that a person doesn’t have the right to put their military service on display during a campaign or use that as an argument against his opponent? Howard you seem to be talking about political correctness gone wild. What are our other choices? Flip coins or should we just vote party line...
Howard B. Owens
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Charlie, you can discuss anything you want. I'm rejecting the notion that there is a litmus test imposed by you or anybody else. Why is that so hard to understand?
Charlie Mallow
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Howard, I have litmus tests for people that want my vote. Why would that be wrong? John expects military service, why doesn’t he have that right? Many who post here have the litmus test of wanting a new comer, no matter whom. Why do they not have that right and why can’t they talk about that requirement?

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