April 2013

Farewell Folks

By Loudoun Insider

Hey, it’s your ole pal LI.  I’ve been dealing with some huge life changes and have just totally lost my interest in the bullshit known as politics.  All these years of effort on my part and others, and we still have a local government run like a fiefdom of the in crowd.  And too few people give a shit.  I really wasted a good chunk of my life on this stuff and will leave it to others to carry on.  If only say one percent of the population really took an interest and got involved we could really have some positive change, but nah, everyone is too busy with themselves here (and I guess just about everywhere else) to care about politics.  Just leave it to the Good Ole Boy and Girl Network and their PR people in what is called the “press”.

I’ll be leaving Loudoun County soon for good.  I’ll be back here and there on business and to visit the few good friends I made.  But holy crap is it amazing how many “friends” disappear when you can no longer help them out politically.  In retrospect, moving to Loudoun County and getting involved in politics was the biggest mistake of my life.  Live and learn as they say.  Enjoy the Black Brigade, Metro, and Fetch.  Oh yeah and taxes to pay for all the special favors.  Good grief.

You regular readers should always know that I never did any of this for any kind of personal gain or fame.  It was a quixotic quest to be a beacon of truth amongst bullshit.  How some of the GOBGN folks sleep at night I’ll never understand.  But we’ll all be judged in the end by a power greater than even the LCRC.

Good luck, Loudouners, I hope some of you stay involved and make a difference.

Write for TC!

By Liberal Anthropologist

The reason things have been slow lately is that all the writers on TC have no chance of being able to make up for the greatness of LI while he is on a well-deserved break.  We are open to having new writers join the ranks.  If you are a regular commenter here and would like to start making your own posts, please feel free to reach out to Vince who’s address is below.  It doesn’t matter what your political point of view is as long as you are thoughtful.

Progressives – Do You Want us to Take You Seriously?

By Liberal Anthropologist

If progressives want to be taken seriously then they need to start self regulating the nonsense that goes on in their ranks. Kirsten Powers who writes for the Daily Beast is a good example of a serious progressive who is willing to not simply defend the indefensible and will call out fellow progressives. She did this recently with regards to the coverage of Dr. Gosnell.

Will the serious progressives stand up to liberal orthodoxy and stand against foolish school policies that are simply sissyfying and destroying the childhoods of our kids? A great example of this can be found here where a school district in Maryland is considering banning hugs amongst other insane policies.

I asked my kids some questions today and was horrified to learn that dodge ball was banned from school at their schools in Loudoun County. Huh? How does that happen? What are we doing to our children when we apply these foolish rules?

I am not completely sure that what my kids reported was accurate. I would be interested in hearing from others about what foolish rules that are enforced in the Loudoun County school system. And I hope the progressives on here will join us in chastising this school district in Maryland and encouraging the end of foolish rules in our local schools.  Dodgeball in school is a right.  Next thing you know they will be banning football in high schools and stopping all dances.

When The Mad Men Conquered Loudoun

By Joe Budzinski

Loudoun Hounds Monorail
Some Loudoun residents almost got a surprising Christmas gift last year when, in barely two months’ time, a new 10,000-seat stadium had been announced, publicized, and treated as a done deal to be plopped down in their back yards with nary a single public hearing or vote by county supervisors.

That momentum hit a speed bump during the holidays when a planning commission raised multiple concerns over the fast-tracked project but, come tomorrow night, it might well be Christmas in April for stadium backers.

The Board of Supervisors is scheduled to vote on a comprehensive plan amendment allowing the new stadium within the “mixed use” One Loudoun development on the south side of the intersection of Route 7 and Loudoun County Parkway (the meeting is scheduled from 4:00-9:00 pm).

Whatever one might think of the project, it shows how quickly our elected leaders can act.

As of September 14, 2012, the stadium was still discussed publicly as part of Kincora for the Board of Supervisors’ 2013 legislative agenda.

On October 1, however, the Hounds were suddenly “Moving to One Loudoun.”

The Board chairman said “We’ve got to get the paperwork through as soon as possible…” and a representative of One Loudoun said “If you want to come early and have dinner, you’re going to be able to do that. If you want to stay late after the game, there is going to be other restaurants and entertainment within walking distance.”

In sales, it is known as the “assumptive close”: Before the mark customer has decided to buy, you regale him with tales of how much more secure he already feels with that undercoating protecting his vehicle, how much easier he can sleep now during the trips to Florida and Maine, knowing he is now safe from salt damage.

Done well, it is pretty effective. But for the customer who sees through the scam, it is incredibly irritating. Those tasked with selling the ballpark employed the tactic assiduously.

By November, the stadium at One Loudoun even had a new tenant, as “home” to a soccer franchise.

A listening ear and an outstretched hand

Those with actual homes within shouting distance of the proposed facility were beset by innumerable public statements and prominent signage trumpeting the ballpark’s imminent arrival. Perhaps as much as the prospect of the stadium surprise materializing out of thin air, the sheer presumptuousness of those heralding its arrival evoked pushback from local residents at meetings with officials and on the Web.

Residents concerned about games and concerts adding to an already unbearable traffic snarl, about noise and light pollution, about diminished aesthetics and possible harassment of the nearby blue heron rookery were not given any solid reasons to doubt these things coming to pass, but instead were told simply the ballpark – you know, the one that is coming whether you like it or not – will be wonderful for all concerned.

They offered “a listening ear – and an outstretched hand.” Whatever the hell that means.

Cynics unswayed by the magical ballpark sales pitch might have been confirmed in their skepticism when One Loudoun’s ownership team took a “hey, while we’re at it” approach to the petition for plan amendment to allow a stadium, and added some additional requests to the wish list, which seemed to add a whiter shade of pale to the mixed-use already approved, evoking a vision less Reston Town Center and more Loehman’s Plaza.

Even the Board chairman said, “I feel a little bit taken advantage of.”

Fetch Loudoun Hounds

While it seems quite likely the board will approve the stadium – if not all the rest of One Loudoun’s requested amendments – at Wednesday’s vote, it also seems certain that at least one vestige of this years-long stadium sales campaign will raise eyebrows for a bit longer.

In the grand scheme of things, what is the mascot for the nonexistent team; nay, for the entire populace of a nonexistent “HoundsNation”?

Mascots are as mockable as mimes and creepy as clowns, so it was hardly an auspicious decision by Hounds’ management to launch “Fetch” to front the project.

But to bob along for several years festooning kids with Hounds chotchkies and t-shirts at made-up “fun days” and other events with the banners, moon bounces, hot dogs and portly baseball retirees for a team that does not even exist, not even on paper – because a franchise called the “Hounds” has yet to be awarded by the “Atlantic Baseball League” (sic) – well, that’s a pretty mock-worthy enterprise right there, and creepy, even before the teamless guy in a dog costume.

He was an odd, sad marketing decision, and one cannot help but predict that whatever the stadium’s final role in the community, Fetch will be no more than a lingering memory, having ambled off into the sunset, his work here done.