While the Crooks in the Swamp are Exposed….

You gotta love the Haji, wrapping themselves up in the flag blaming immigrants for all their problems while they are being robbed blind by their own kind.

Some of other emails admitted into evidence revealed Manafort’s lobbying of Trump son-in-law Jared Kushner on behalf of Stephen Calk, the chairman of Federal Savings Bank. Prosecutors say Calk approved $16 million in loans for Manafort — despite several red flags — because Calk wanted a job in the Trump administration.

The emails showed that in the weeks after the 2016 election, Manafort urged Kushner to consider Calk for Secretary of the Army, a position Calk had put at the top of his list in an earlier email to Manafort. Calk also listed seven other senior domestic appointments and 18 ambassadorships — ranked in order of preference — that he would accept.

Even better we learn of these emails from the media here in the US via US prosecutors rather than the Russians. To some that is evidence of the deep state but people wearing tin foil hats have been with humanity since 1910, the year Aluminum foil was invented so that is expected.

The evidence of pervasive corruption has literally been slapping everyone that cared to notice across the face since day 1 of America’s experiment electing a carnival barker to the Presidency. Tom Marino never got the chance and Scott Pruitt may yet prove he is a piker against Wilbur Ross. And then there is Trump putting Goldman Sachs in charge of the US Treasury after railing against them during his campaign. The signs were everywhere folks and so called conservatives everywhere have proven themselves no better than Hillary Clinton democrats in standing by their man.

Even better since this is bat shit crazy 2018 we have people that were so cowardly in the 1960s as to crap their own pants to get the 4-F shilling for the coward that had bone spurs all while running down those that have served. I personally can’t wait for the new season of South Park.

Oh and then there is this:

Ex-Trump attorney Michael Cohen pleads guilty in hush-money scheme ~ AP

2018 is also the year without the dog days of summer. Continue reading “While the Crooks in the Swamp are Exposed….”

Why Hancock County Can’t Afford Nice Things….. (Updated)

Reader Submitted Photo of Front Gate of the Bay Waveland Yacht Club
Reader Submitted Photo of Front Gate of the Bay Waveland Yacht Club

It all started with a comment left by Sold Out on The Optics are Terrible:

The Yacht Club was paying over $19K a year in advalorem. She showed them how to go non profit and quit paying local taxes run the non profit thru her and just pay her.

That comment raised two distinct questions in our minds here at Slabbed. The first question is whether or not the Bay Waveland Yacht Club was paying property taxes. The second question would pertain to the local Chamber of Commerce being involved in getting tax exemptions for a social club. I’ll answer the second question first because we need to line through it for the purposes of the rest of this post as we found no evidence the Chamber was involved in the Yacht Club’s local property tax assessments. The Yacht club however, was given a tax abatement by Hancock County Tax Collector Jimmie Ladner and that is plenty interesting on its own.

On October 5, 2015 the Bay Waveland Yacht Club, Inc filed a status report with the Mississippi Secretary of State which indicated it changed its corporate charter:

The period of existence is perpetual Second: The purpose for which it is created are: Mission and Purpose: Associate as a
fraternal and benevolent organization for the common purpose, promotion and pleasure of doing good works related to boating, racing, athletics and related activities Donate use of its facilities, boats and personnel for the advancement of high school sailing, sailing instruction to the children of the community, providing boat storage and launching to the Department of Marine Resources and for search and rescue initiatives, sponsoring annual events open to the community in the celebration of national holidays, hosting civic club functions and fishing rodeos Encourage the owning and use of power and sailing boats for pleasure and a safe harbor for boaters in distress Host international, national and regional regattas in order to exhibit the resources of the Mississippi Gulf Coast to international, national and regional visitors Erect and maintain a building and marina facilities to be used for its good works, charitable endeavors and as a club house for its members Provide periodic donations of use of its facilities and property for the benefit of the community.

That is interesting that it donates its facilities for sailing instruction. The summer program cost $450/child so I am not sure what is exactly being donated to the public but boy that new mission statement sure sounds good. Jimmie Ladner indicated to Slabbed that after the club changed its by laws he gave it the property tax exemption under authority section 27-31-1(d) of the Mississippi Code, which does allow for certain nonprofits to gain a property tax exemption. The problem is the Bay Waveland Yacht Club, per its own 990 forms filed with IRS, is a 501(c)(7) social club. Worse, the 990 forms indicated that no changes were made to its governing documents so there is a fundamental contradiction between the story BWYC is telling the local tax collector and the one it is telling the IRS. Continue reading “Why Hancock County Can’t Afford Nice Things….. (Updated)”

Other Voices | Tom Callaghan: Hit Him in the Base

Posted on August 14, 2018
You want to beat Trump? Hit him in the base.

But in a nice way. Sort of like how Reagan beat Carter and Kennedy beat Nixon and Obama beat Romney. Cheerful, with a bit of self deprecating humor, not angry. More mensch not momzer. (Harry Truman was a mensch, Rick Santorum a momzer).

What we need, right now, is for someone to go out into Trump Country and take it to him. Go to where he goes. Speak before he gets there and after he leaves. Stalk him. Rebut him. Correct him. Kid with him. Make it fun. Turn it into a debate. Bring a band. Make it a show. Follow the advice of my old friend Sheldon Adelson (who I haven’t met) “do something different and success will follow you like a shadow.”

By the way, I like Sheldon Adelson and Steve Bannon and Nancy Pelosi and Bernie Sanders and Barack Obama. I don’t like sappy suck ups like Ted Cruz and Tom Cotton and John Bolton and Mike Pompeo. Oh, yeah, and I like Pat Buchanan and I don’t like Rachel Maddow and I like Babara Boxer and I can’t abide Joey (Jo-Jo) Lieberman and I think Steve Kornacki is great and a damn sight better than many of the MSNBC hosts that have their own shows and he doesn’t. I also like Malcolm Nance, Bob Costa and Ian Bremmer . I’m even starting to like Jennifer Rubin, but that took a while, a really long while. But, I digress…

We need a happy warrior. A fearless warrior. Doesn’t have to be a Democrat or a politician. It has to be someone known and respected. Could be retired military, business, academia or it could be a politician. The key qualification is that the person has to view Trump’s continued presence as President of the United States as an ongoing insult that has to be checked in the short term by, at a minimum, flipping control of the House of Representatives. Continue Reading…..

Bless Their Poor Hearts, Which Suddenly Now Thirst for Knowledge

It would help if Mayor Dane would whip the other City Council persons in line so they could keep a consistent story:

This comes after Mayor Maxwell revealed last week the city is facing a $14 million budget deficit, and that the city and state are reviewing spending from 2012-2017. The city has already turned over financial records to the State Auditor.

“The misconception out there in the social media world is that we should have known this coming in,” the mayor said.

Maxwell took office in July. The budget had to be adopted by October. He said the city passed a budget based on the current numbers.

Bless their hearts this is what Councilman Scott Tipton told Karen Nelson:

It was a common practice in years past to move money from the utility fund into the general fund to balance the budget, Councilman Scott Tipton said Wednesday.

The only reason it wasn’t done in the last two years is that, “there was no money left in there to do it,” Tipton said.

So who are we to believe, Mayor Dane who claims not to have a clue but who had the September 30, 2016 audit which showed the general fund was broke waiting for him when he assumed office in July, 2017. Mayor Dane actually submitted the audit which showed the general fund was broke to the Office of the State Auditor in October, 2017. Or should we believe the City Councilman that just admitted raiding the Utility fund for years until it ran out of money. The financial mismanagement here crosses into the realm of malfeasance IMHO folks because Mayor Dane and Councilman Tipton were clearly mining money from the lemonade spring area of Big Rock Candy mountain. Continue reading “Bless Their Poor Hearts, Which Suddenly Now Thirst for Knowledge”

“The Optics are Terrible”

And worse, Bay St Louis City Councilmen conducting the public’s business in secret being defensive upon hearing (well deserved) criticism for holding closed door meetings with no public notice with vendors discussing a large contract (or a quorum of the Council being wined and dined by developer Jim MacPhaille at a meeting discussing one of his proposed real estate developments).

Bay Council bickers over utility audit contract ~ Stacey Cato

When Knoblock questioned DeSalvo on who initiated the meeting with Delta Water, things got a bit heated.

“I’m not going to get into this political argument with you Mr. Knoblock,” DeSalvo said. “They met at my office.”

“Who was there?” Knoblock asked.

“Myself and them,” DeSalvo said.

“Was the council president notified?” Knoblock asked.

“I notified everybody that they were coming at the (previous) meeting,” DeSalvo said.

“I’m just saying that if you’re going to negotiate contracts, that’s a council procedure,” Knoblock said.

Worse is the City Attorney that would advise a City Council to not bid large contracts just because the law says you don’t have to bid them. It would be nice if public officials would treat the public’s money with the same respect they treat their own. Continue reading ““The Optics are Terrible””

About Pascagoula Being Broke and The Copious Amount of BS Being Bandied About by Mayor Maxwell

Folks, I thought Mayor Dane and his band of Trumpies had all the answers. Maybe he should have been paying attention to the City’s checkbook instead of grandstanding for headlines in the press last December because the topic of the City being broke should have been publicly discussed way before now:

Independent audit reveals City of Pascagoula faces $14 million deficit ~` Tyler Carter

The story is instructive in the respect that Carter recounted the events Joe Friday style but as you’ll learn reading this post, when the City Attorney is involved in ‘splaining the annual audit, there is going to be a certain level of dishonesty bandied about because it taketh not a lawyer to explain numbers, though lawyers can certainly spin them. Here is an example of some of the bigger whoppers told a few days back:

The auditor and council agrees that this was not an issue from the previous council, but an issue spanning multiple past administrations.

Per the audit reports on file at the Office of the State Auditor there was $4.5 million dollars cash in the General Fund at September 30, 2015 and the General Fund was owed $5.3 million by other City Funds. By September 30, 2016 the City’s General Fund had no cash and was owed a whopping $14.2 million by other City Funds. The General Fund also owed other funds $8.861 million in money it had taken from them in the City pooled bank account.

Anyone with half a brain, including those who purport to be the City’s leaders that balance their own checkbooks could recognize the red flags. The audit report, dated June 29, 2017 was certainly a rude gift to the new City Council and Mayor but the City’s bleak financial picture was certainly no secret. According to the date stamp by the Office of the State Auditor the 2016 annual audit was received by them on October 3, 2017, which means the audit was submitted over 3 months late. I did a cursory search of the Mississippi Press’ on line story archive and do not see a story about the presentation of the 2016 audit to the City Council but I did find a few nuggets: Continue reading “About Pascagoula Being Broke and The Copious Amount of BS Being Bandied About by Mayor Maxwell”

Other Voices | Tom Callaghan: Foreign Relations in the Age of Trump

Posted on July 26, 2018
One of my mother’s favorite expressions, invariably addressed to me, was “make yourself useful as well as ornamental.” Another helpful bromide, this one of uncertain provenance, is “tell your own story or someone else will tell it for you.” Practical advice for individuals, businesses and governments.

How does this relate to Trump as an actor on the world stage with foreign countries? You know I’m going to get to Israel and Jews, right? Of course. It’s what I do.

If you’re interested in how public policy is made in the United States and how the conventional wisdom becomes the conventional wisdom, the American Jewish Community is not the only game in town but it is, by far, the most effective game in town. They tell their story (and sometimes your story) constantly. They make themselves not only useful but essential.

At a bare minimum we can say that, in terms of foreign relations advocacy, Israel and the American Jewish community are playing three dimensional speed chess while the rest of the world is still reading the instructions for slow motion special ed tic-tac-toe.

Don’t laugh…it’s true.

Ignorance is not bliss. Ignorance is costly and deadly.

In the field of foreign affairs, let’s look at who has found favor in the Age of Trump and who hasn’t.

ISRAEL. Nobody has received better treatment from the Trump Administration than Israel. Trump never talks about a two state solution or criticizes Israel for additional or expanded settlements in the Occupied Territories …which always impressed me as two parties agreeing to share a pizza while the stronger party eats most of it. The US Embassy has been moved to Jerusalem and Trump gives carte blanche on Israel’s execution, from a safe distance, of demonstrators at the wall separating Israel from Gaza. Unlike our NATO allies, Israel has never fought and died with us and they are regularly the largest annual recipient of US AID, receiving $250 billion, inflation adjusted, since their founding which makes them the largest recipient of US Aid ever.

EUROPE. From Trump, Europe and Canada get the shaft. Continue Reading……