Bob Stroh
Bob Stroh
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Last night’s city council meeting was both dramatic and anticlimactic.

I owe Mayor Walker an apology for stating in last week’s editorial that it appeared she was packing-up, selling her house, and headed out of state. I was wrong in assuming she was leaving the state, or the county, or city, for that matter. She took it upon herself to speak as a private citizen at last night’s meeting and bitterly criticize my carelessness in not verifying. She said she had no plans to leave the city. Therefore my concerns about who might be appointed to her seat on the council in the event she decided to leave were irrelevant.

For jumping to the conclusion that she would change her present city residency after selling her house I apologize. I learned of the sale of her house on press day and failed to check my facts. Again, I apologize. I will be sure to verify my facts in the future.

* * *

I guess this mistake lit my old nemesis Bob Stroh’s fuse. We haven’t heard from Bob in a long time, but he has apparently used this absence to distil and compress his once notorious vitriol.

Prior to the opening of the meeting he ambushed me by sneaking up and pointing a camera in my face and taking several photos. By “in my face” I mean within three or four inches. I returned the favor, and he skulked away to his seat.

During the public comments time, Bob excoriated my reputation as he has done so many times before. Bob has always had difficulty distinguishing fact from fiction during his diatribes. When I make a mistake Bob sees it as a lie, a filthy lie.

But when Bob lies about me it’s no mistake. One whopper I can never forget was when he completely lost it, referring to “my favorite abortion center.” Making such a scurrilous remark about someone who professes to be pro-life makes it the more outrageous. But, Bob did apologize that time, a couple of weeks later, in one medium, after posting in two. Of course, I have to forgive him, as I do once again for last night’s irrational tantrum.

Press the Play button above to see Bob Stroh.

There is a live wire running through all of this emotion and name-calling. It began with the local political group I dubbed the Katzenjammers. This is a tightly knit, highly focused, well organized and financed group of like-minded friends and acquaintances who set out to “take back our town”. Commendable for awakening community interest in city government, it has proved to be a financial and civic disaster. It began in earnest when the north Fillmore Specific Plan, showing nearly 1,000 homes first appeared in a half-page rendering in the Gazette. This led them to Measures H and I which they won. Then it was an exhausting fight over our new water treatment plant, which they lost. It goes on and on, past our hoped-for Business Park, etc.

Highest on its list of objectives was replacing city officials and employees whom they found to disagree with their agenda. A Katzenjammer majority succeeded in taking over the city council. Thereafter, we began to lose the most talented and experienced city officials and employees and all of their historical knowledge. After eliminating virtually all opposition (city manager, city engineer, city finance director, city clerk, etc. and three council members, they brought in interim and temporary replacements, costing hundreds of thousands of dollars. They even criticized city legal counsel, after he reduced his fees by 20 percent to help in this fiscal emergency. They caused three fine planning commissioners to resign in protest. To this, Mayor Washburn said, “I don’t understand the animosity”. Councilman Brooks characterized the resignations as a political ploy. How clueless can they be?

They created a true mess, especially with the budget. They also created serious and expensive problems Vis ‘a vis state and federal laws and regulations, which must still be dealt with.

Without cause or reason even long-time professional firms dealing with city business were let go. A councilman dismisses a great Planning Commissioner arbitrarily, saying “time for new blood.” They bring in a new manager who every employee publically condemns as incompetent, and do nothing. They fought and criticized even the most beneficial programs (water plant) and financial arrangements (sales tax contract worth millions) without understanding what they were doing. Even today, recently, complaints are made about the tax contract which was lawful from the beginning (contrary to Bob Stroh’s opinion) by the court, and which will soon bring in $2Million. So, they hunger for that much needed money, but defame the city officials who created the contract. It was illegal, they said, it was even “immoral” they said, they’re now eagerly on the take.

The Katzenjammer issue is too long to relate here, but I am working at a detailed story to be published in the Gazette soon. A reasonable person will be shocked by the stubborn stupidity, malice, arrogance and incompetence of the Katzenjammers, and the hundreds of thousands of dollars their foolishness has cost the City of Fillmore.

I’m considering discontinuing all coverage of city council meetings if three good council members cannot be elected in November of 2012, or if a recall fails to materialize. These are the only two ways Fillmore can balance the council and replace our present city manager.

Consider this a preview of coming attractions.



Apparently all union employees working for the City of Fillmore called in sick today (Wednesday). No doubt this is to call attention to the fact that the city council majority has stubbornly refused to take any action at all to redress the serious, publically enumerated complaints about City Manager Yvonne Quiring’s failed management style. Two letters of no confidence have been read into record on two separate occasions by distinguished former Mayor Scott Lee. Councilman Brooks piped-in (last council meeting) “You reap what you sow.” Intelligent citizens ask “What are you talking about?” And the band plays on.

The virtual collapse of city revenues and budget, the disappearance of the city’s once vaunted 40 percent revenue surplus, widespread employee furloughs and layoffs, and hostility caused by council incompetence, has brought the city to a new low.

The grossly unprofessional, unlawful, and disrespectful treatment by the city council majority of the Fillmore Planning Commission caused Commissioner Mark Austin to resign following the last public meeting. Several more Commissioners are expected to follow suit. Mayor Gayle Washburn, Council members Jamey Brooks, Patti Walker, and Brian Sipes precipitated this expected mass resignation by acting to reject a decision of the Commission prior to any formal discussion or decision on the issue of a cellular tower along the railroad tracks. The council has treated, perhaps our most professional and competent Commission, with complete disrespect and disdain.

You picked a fine time to leave us Patti. It appears that Councilmember Patti Walker is packing-up, selling her house (see photo) and heading out of California. That’s like leaving the scene of a serious accident.

The big question now: What bozo will the reigning Katzenjammer regime appoint to fill the seat? Or, maybe we can find someone with common sense and an armadillo-like hide to enter the special election in November?

The rumors are truly frightening.

Think Recall!



One of the numerous facts which quickens my concern for the survival of our republic is simply the intellectual vacuum which abides within federal, state, and local authority. For various reasons, including a toxic blend of arrogance and ignorance, greed, an insatiable lust for power, and an absence of anything remotely resembling traditional Judeo-Christian character, these kings of the communal dunghill are killing our country.

Take last night’s council meeting for a colorful example. People of Fillmore, look at who you have voted to lead city government! They (excepting only Councilmembers Conaway and Walker) now preside over a broken system, which they themselves have broken.

By this time any rational, honest observer must recognize that the Katzenjammer disease has metastasized, killing-off virtually every talented, experienced long-term employee in sight. Remember all of those temporary, interim folks brought in to patch-up the pieces? First went our city manager, replaced with someone so managerially incapable that (after a single (and first) year at her previous job, had her contract bought out for more than $300,000. But, our own interim, provisional, rent-a-manager, and Patti Walker snookered Councilman Conaway out of the scheduled trip to interview her previous employers. This resulted in the hiring of our present manager, who apparently finds managing an insurmountable challenge.

We would do well to recall the managing talents of former City Manager Roy Payne, or Tom Ristau, who were always ready to answer questions and guide meetings.

Last night, with Conaway absent, Councilfolks Brooks, Sipes, and appointed Mayor Washburn (all members of the Katzenjammer coalition) under the sometimes drowsy prompting of our new city manager, managed to insult our Planning Commission members and reject the legal advice of our City Attorney, thus exposing the city to fresh litigation by formally requesting an appeal of a Planning Commission decision to approve a cellular tower on the property of Super Seal and Stripe, adjacent to the railroad tracks.

The City of Fillmore is undergoing a management disaster at this time. Our council majority is utterly incompetent, and should be voted out. Our city manager has managed to alienate ALL employees, as shown by two (2) letters of no confidence this past year. Our budget, roiled by alien hands, has only recently come together, with disasterous results. The thousands of dollars spent to redesign the budget were wasted.

Now we have Brooks, Sipes, and Washburn, insulting our Planning Commissioners by deciding to veto (in anticipation) a decision which the commission had not yet approved.

Commissioner Mark Austin was absolutely correct in observing (shortly before resigning from the Commission) “...I hope the City of Fillmore in this next election wakes up and sees what’s going on with city instead of sitting in the back and bitching about what’s going on in this community. They [should] step forward and remove some of these council members who are causing some of this. There’s a chance in November to do it, so wake up Fillmore!”

Most of the Katzenjammers were voted in by the skin of their teeth. I would ask those who voted for them, what have they done to keep all of those promises? Have they made things better, or worse?

How do we explain the hostile stupidity of Councilguy Jamey Brooks, when, pondering the many city employees losing their jobs, he stated “I feel bad for the reap what you sow...I think the town was mismanaged in the past...this started years ago.” This is the pipsqueak that roared. “Mismanaged in the past”! What the hell are you talking about? – Until you and your idiot friends arrived (led by failed former mayor Gary Creagle) Fillmore was a THRIVING, PROSPEROUS city, with a 40 percent SURPLUS! Thriving, until we caught the Katzenjammer disease.



As we look at larger and larger scales of government things only grow worse.

The State of California has spent itself into near oblivion, and wants even more of our money in taxes for more spending. If I had fewer commitments in this state I would have left long ago – and my children are fifth generation Californians.


Now, for the greatest governmental disaster of all, our federal government.

Incompetence at every level, driven by huge surges of socialistic, anti-Judeo-Christian tradition, resulting in anti-family, pro-abortion, acidic facilitation of same-sex “marriage”, confiscatory taxation, weakened defense, and a determined failure to defend our borders or provide practical “civil defense.” An openly gay military was facilitated by long-standing and deeply seditious leadership at the highest level, taking advantage of the fact that insubordination is not tolerated. Military whistleblowers are rare, and rarely survive. This outrage was promoted and approved only at the highest levels, against the objections of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and thousands of hotly expressed objections from active and retired flag officers and enlisted men of every service. This was a treacherous betrayal of unprecedented proportions which will never be accepted by the rank and file without massive disruption of unit cohesion.

Why do we continue to belong to that “parliament of weasels” called the United Nations, or that ridiculous paper tiger called NATO?

With the nuclear catastrophe in Japan, and floods and fires in America, is it too much to expect that the federal government would have secured our nuclear facilities against fires and floods such as are happening at Fort Calhoun, Nebraska, and Los Alamos? Is it really that difficult to clear a fire space around a threatened nuclear plant, or build a concrete barrier against flooding at another?

Have we become too stupid and naive as a nationality to survive in this world of unprecedented and lethal instability? The voters of the City of Fillmore, the State of California, and the nation of the United States of America will reveal the answer in November.



Pray for the residents of Minot, North Dakota. They are facing the greatest flood in that state’s history. MINOT FLOOD: Disastrous. Unstoppable. Historic. Unprecedented...

Well, another budget workshop concluded last night. The tedious work of cutting programs and jobs continues. Some of the cuts suggested by City Manager Quiring seemed unworthy of the time spent on them. For example, it was estimated that $1,300 would be saved by turning off the water to the city hall fountain. After a discussion which reminded everyone of the income derived from weddings and parties at the city park, it was unanimously decided to keep the water flowing.

Also on the chopping block was north Fillmore’s “Storefront” complex which is presided over by retired sheriff’s deputy Max Pina. All council members but Mayor Gayle Washburn wanted to avoid any cuts to this much-used city asset. Washburn asked for an hour-by-hour assessment of costs at mid-term. With the loss of one gang officer, any cuts of Storefront services would seem to be counter-productive.

I’m just learning of a broad survey of Orange County executive salaries; maybe it’s broader than a single county. Many, if not most, of the salaries were found to be “excessive” but not “abusive”. I believe the salary for our new city manager is excessive, especially since she requires an assistant (two assistants?) to do the job when very little is going on. I believe California Assemblymen make less than $100,000 per year. Our manager (in a city of only 14,000) makes a total of about $230,000. Remember all the emotional fuss Councilman Jamey Brooks made about excessive salaries? And who can forget his now infamous June 3, 2008 proclamation before council: "Last year at this time, the city manager had sharply criticized my motives for being up here so I just want to make my motives crystal clear tonight. I have not come for peace, I have come with a sword. I HAVE COME TO CREATE DIVISION, if it doesn't exist, but I think division already exists."

He also opined that Fillmore’s city manager should not make more than $85,000 per year. Jamey’s conservative passion seems to have melted away after he was elected. Where are his outbursts of protest about excessive salaries now, when our city manager is making more than California State Senators, State Assemblymen, U.S. Senators, and the Vice President of the United States? Do I really have to say that this is NUTS!?



I was going to write a column this week but was sidelined at the last minute, which is the time I usually write this column.

I was just going to comment on several Drudge postings, such as:

New Egypt? 7,000 civilians jailed since Mubarak fell...

Protesters burn American flag during Obama visit to Puerto Rico -- a U.S. territory...

China refuses to help US investigate counterfeit weapons parts...

Mexican narco gangster reveals the underworld...

US Army finally ditches beret...

Metal Thieves Stripping Critical Parts From Fire Sprinkler Systems...Gay judge's same-sex marriage ruling upheld...

And the Stuxnet virus.

But, doing it this way really saves time and space!

Next week I promise to really annoy somebody.

Be well.



It’s been a few weeks since I last scribbled some thoughts in this column. I guess it’s time for me to scratch around a little today.

City council received an “Organizational Review” from Bryce Consulting last night, for which (I believe) it paid something in the neighborhood of $30,000. Originally, this firm was asked to undertake a “classification and organizational” structure study. Had our present council majority not spent the last four years chasing away virtually all of the city’s most knowledgeable and talented employees, this study would not have been necessary, and the city would have saved $30,000.

It’s interesting to note that our new city manager is putting in for an assistant. Why is this necessary when so little is on the agenda? It seems like the Review’s recommendations load-up management while cutting-down staff. Hmm – beginning to sound like our school board.

If either former managers Roy Payne or Tom Ristau were still guiding city government, any staff reductions, necessitated by the severe city deficit, would have been handled smoothly and efficiently.

I was struck by the fact that a suggestion had to be made to have either a council member or our new city manager personally visit with individual staff members to evaluate job duties to determine what “adjustments” might be made. Both Payne and Ristau knew staff personally and the scope of their work.

These determinations were not completed before the report was released. In several cases (the deletion of Disaster Coordinator being one) any recommendation would be foolish without an understanding of the scope and efficiency of the position involved. In this case our Disaster Coordinator happens to be one of the hardest working and talented multi-tasking individuals on the city staff. His extraordinary range of technical responsibilities (and creative volunteer tasks) speak for themselves.

But, employee cuts must happen to redress our dangerous deficit. I just fail to understand how this report helps; an experienced city manager should know how to reorganize employees without the assistance of an expensive Organizational Review.

As usual, Councilman Jamey Brooks proved to be an annoying embarrassment as he snipped at Councilman Steve Conaway like a spoiled attack Yorkie. Little Caesar never seems to know how to behave himself. Following Conaway’s methodical questioning of City Manager Quiring on budget issues, Brooks quickly intervened with an unprovoked “If I can get a word in edgewise...” Or he appears incensed at the suggestion that the manager might walk through an investigation of individual employees’ job duties. She’s far too busy to do that, he complaind. Brooks needs to be collared with one of those funnel-like things used to prevent self-inflicted damage – in this case, further damage to his reputation.

Bad boy! No biscuit!

Nothing was reported concerning the status of former Fire Chief Pete Egedi or his threatened lawsuit against the city for reinstatement. Following a 3-year investigation for alleged criminal conduct, the Ventura County District Attorney dropped all charges.


The reality this week is that I am recovering from a bad cold. Will post another aggravating editorial next week. Until then, maintain your aggravation.


It may be another sign of aging, but I am dealing with a persistent and growing reluctance to engage city hall for what seems like unending and fruitless confrontation with our Katzenjammers.

But dealing with city hall doesn’t explain the depth of my lethargy. State, national, and world affairs team-up to pull me close to a state of quasi depression. I find myself in search of some good news, a little relief from screaming reality. Show me some good news, I dare you.

Am I being unreasonably negative? Let’s see.

The City of Fillmore is broke; its famous 40 percent surplus long gone. The Katzenjammers have succeeded in chasing-off most of the best and brightest employees. We have hired a manager whose one-year experience with her previous employer was so catastrophic that they paid more than $300,000 to buy-out her contract. Her performance here has been so bad that after her first year all city employees delivered two angry letters of no confidence. We have the worst city council in city history, yet the band plays on.

Our state is bankrupt. Of the recent revenue increase of $6 billion half is expected to be spent instead of paying-off part of the $12 billion debt. Taxes are strangling small business while the tax noose is expected to tighten. Our schools are mostly failures, turning out (of those who don’t drop out) ignorant, self-indulgent entitlement sponges. A huge percentage of Californians are out of work, approaching the level of the Great Depression, if accurately measured.

Our nation has been turned over to the most inexperienced, dangerous, socialistic spendthrift ideologue in presidential history. He has seeded government with the thickest cloud of equally dangerous, Constitution-hating, big government radicals in memory. Our military has been methodically degraded, humiliated, and demoralized by our Secretary of Defense and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff by mandating acceptance of openly homosexual service members, and their offensive, immoral behavior. Our president welcomes this insult despite the absolute moral and practical objections of 3,000 years of Judeo-Christian tradition, and the consistent prohibition of America’s entire history. If homosexuals compose about two percent of America’s population, it stands to reason they must never have exceeded one percent of our military population, if that. And that one percent has always been clandestine. Despite this, 99 percent of the normal rank and file are to be demoralized by the unimpeachable conduct and presence of one percent – without having had a legitimate vote in the matter. Who has done this, and why? Military cohesion, say our fifth column homophiles, sucks. God protect the moral integrity of our fighting men and military women; their lives depend upon it.

Our nation is fighting two wars, and contributing to others (Libya) while it is becoming clear that Muslim nations want no part of democracy (see Egypt, etc.) or Western ways. Some do, indeed. Most do not. What they want most of all is our money, until we have been bled and spent our way out – then China and Sharia will reap the benefits (Afghanistan is said to have trillions in mineral deposits). And, schizophrenic, back-stabbing Muslim “friends” like Pakistan will launch more Jihad during our absence. The only Arab “Spring” to be found will be found in a detonating mechanism beside the road.

I sincerely hope I’m wrong, but hope, as they say, is neither a strategy nor a goal.

God bless our troops, and keep them strong, physically and morally. The Lord rebuke and defeat those intent on defiling the cohesion they must depend upon for victory.

We are a nation which has lost its way. I guess that’s what I find most depressing.


The strategy launched by President Bush to capture or kill the terrorist Osama bin Laden has finally proved successful. After being hidden and protected by our Pakistani “friends” for at least 5 years, a stones-throw away from Pakistan’s “West Point”, he was introduced to US SEALS and summarily terminated with maximum prejudice. It’s not true, however, that Osama’s last words were “Oh crap!”

It’s amazing to witness the extraordinary confusion being so quickly spun out of this triumphant mission. The bottom line here is that Democrats, including the president, the vice president and his minions, are incapable of dealing with military and security matters. They are also utterly incapable of initiating successful missions like this, or maximizing the beneficial results.

Obama takes credit for this brilliantly successful event even though he opposed all of President Bush’s tactics which finally led to this result. Waterboarding was denounced as an evil form of torture, though it provided the information which led to the killing of bin Laden, and though our Navy SEALS each undergo waterboarding as a part of their training. Everything Bush used to further the search for bin Laden was condemned by Democrats, especially candidate Obama; but success has proven those tactics were the correct way to proceed, and Bush has been given no official recognition to date.

Today, the White House announced that photos of the body of bin Laden will not be published. I predict they will eventually be leaked (WikiLeaks?) to the public. We have a right to see this evidence. Dainty Democrats argue that these photos will offend the sensitivities of hundreds of millions of evil Muslim believers (those for whom bin Laden was a hero, and now martyr). The “good” Muslim believers (those allegedly opposed to terrorism and bin Laden’s work) are silent, as usual. They are certainly not cheering in the streets of Cairo, or in Indonesia, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nigeria, Iran, Turkey, Sudan, Iraq, Afghanistan, Malaysia, Saudi Arabia, Syria, or 40 other Muslim countries (despite what some governments may say).

Muslim “sensitivities”? Really? These are the people who videotaped the beheading of Daniel Pearl and untold numbers of others, who desecrated the bodies of American workers and hung them on a bridge, who stoned to death a 14-year-old girl, after she was raped by her cousin, for daring to report the crime! I could go on for weeks about radical Jihadist “sensitivities”. More immediately relevant, recall what the expressions must have been on the faces of those forced to jump to their deaths from the twin towers on 9/11, Osama’s terrorist “masterpiece”. All, innocent human beings with families and friends. All God’s children.

Jihadists are demons doing the Devil’s murderous work. Like the Devil, they will be damned. The photos of bin Laden’s corps should be shown to the world to remind Jihadists that, however long the battle must continue, the civilized world will never falter in the fight; Jihadists will fail as bin Laden has failed. They can run and hide, in the mountains or under the bed, but they will always be found and destroyed. Dhimmitude and Sharia law will always be repugnant to free societies.

Free people throughout the world should salute President Bush today for his successful strategy and relentless pursuit of these killers. I join with President Bush in commending our outstanding military and intelligence services that are responsible for the ignominious death of Osama bin Laden, demonic butcher of the innocent.
Here is a statement from former President Bush concerning this recent victory: “Earlier this evening, President Obama called to inform me that American forces killed Osama bin Laden, the leader of the al qaeda network that attacked America on September 11, 2001. I congratulated him and the men and women of our military and intelligence communities who devoted their lives to this mission. They have our everlasting gratitude. This momentous achievement marks a victory for America, for people who seek peace around the world, and for all those who lost loved ones on September 11, 2001. The fight against terror goes on, but tonight America has sent an unmistakable message: No matter how long it takes, justice will be done.”


First, an announcement.
Two weeks ago the Gazette reported that the swimming pool had to be drained in order to repair a serious leak. The technicians charged with taking care of the pool reported that about 10,000 gallons a day had been leaking from the new pool for up to one year. We were later told that this figure was greatly exaggerated. We have yet to learn how much water was actually lost during that time, but we did learn that the leak was caused by a piece of rebar which had accidentally been driven through a pipe under the pool during construction.

* * *

I’m truly disgusted with the budget performance of our school board and administration.

Some solutions have been proffered by Superintendent Sweeney, and Finance Director Bush, all involving job cuts. Why not have our top-heavy, pay-heavy, administration share the pain by cutting-back on those juicy salaries? Why should teachers, principals, and classified employees bear the entire brunt of severe budget cuts?

Teacher’s aids, librarians, and many other once-essential school employees are now a distant memory. Making up the difference now are many hard-working, multi-tasking (and unappreciated) individuals. Kimberly Rivers has incorporated an idea for balancing the budget without eliminating more essential jobs into her “School Matters” blog located here


Our new multi-million-dollar swimming pool lies empty. Plagued with serious problems from its inglorious opening day, it has now been revealed that our pool has been leaking about 10,000 gallons per day for approximately a year. No wonder keeping the chemical balance has been such a challenge. What would your water bill be if you were using 10,000 gallons per day?

The next question occurring to inquiring minds should be, where did all that water go? What kind of inevitable damage has this heavy release done? How much has been spent to correct pool problems since opening day?

Many more questions need to be answered about our pool, which has been operating deeply in the red since its first month of operation, which, in turn, has necessitated its closure for several months.

I believe the story of our beautiful new “aquatic complex” will prove to be the greatest scandal in Fillmore’s scandal rich history.

From the beginning, it appeared we may have built the wrong pool. This seems likely because it is not properly designed for swimming lesions. I thought something was wrong the day I witnessed instructors attempting to teach 52 children how to swim with floating devices, crowded into about 10 feet at the shallow end. The children’s water park area also had to be torn-up to correct design mistakes. For a brand new swimming complex, the list of serious, persistent, and expensive problems is long.

Our city manager needs to reveal the names of those in charge. We need to know, with specificity, what is wrong and who is responsible.

Remember all those promises of “taking back our city” and providing truly open government? Now is a good time to see if those Katzenjammers were serious.


Frankly, I’m tired today, and will just expand a few of the issues so well expressed by Robert Spencer adjacent to this column.

Spencer is one of the most articulate experts on militant (and non-militant) Islam today. A very courageous man, he is the author of several fine books on the subject of the Koran, Muslim jihad, and Islamic history. I strongly recommend Spencer’s books, especially The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades). The front cover of this book highlights 5 blurbs: “Islam teaches that Muslims must wage war to impose Islamic law on non-Muslim states; American Muslim groups are engaged in a huge cover-up of Islamic doctrine and history; Today’s jihad terrorists have the same motives and goals as the Muslims who fought the Crusaders; The Crusades were defensive conflicts [a delayed response to centuries of Muslim aggression]; and, Muslim persecution of Christians has continued for 13 centuries-and still goes on.” These are historical facts. Nothing but bloody disaster will be accomplished by ignoring these facts, or by politically correct naiveté. To quote Spencer again “What is known today as the ‘Islamic world’ was created by a series of brutal conquests of non-Muslim lands”. We cannot believe all of the talk about peaceful Islam because the few peaceful parts of the Koran are abrogated by (Koran 2:106) because they were written before those demanding war on non-believers. “...the violent verses of the ninth sura, including the Verse of the Sword (9:5) abrogate the peaceful verses, because they were revealed later in Muhammad’s prophetic career: In fact, most Muslim authorities agree that the ninth sura was the very last section of the Koran to be revealed.”

I also believe that the Koran can be shown to be the antithesis of the Christian Bible, starting with the denial of Christ’s divinity, a faith proudly proclaiming its love of death, instead of the Christian ideal of love, forgiveness, and freedom.

Islam believes that the Koran is the pure, literal, perfect, and final word of God, and as such, can never be “interpreted” differently than that which has been received historically. The Hadith (stories of Muhammad’s life) is also believed to be the perfect, eternal word of Allah, and therefore can never be changed.

Islam provides a license to kill anyone perceived guilty of heretical thoughts, words, or deeds, and it is done throughout the world, every day. Muslim believers can, with Koranic authority, take essentially any act against any non-believer which, in their minds, will promote or defend Islam. This is a license to not only to kill, but to deceive as well. That most Western Muslim believers do not take such devious or violent action against non-believers is not to say that they cannot justify doing so in the future. Think of the many murders inflicted by Muslim believers who were in positions of trust. Those Muslim believers who deny any of the Koran’s violent parts are themselves considered heretics by hundreds of millions of Islamic fundamentalists. Actually, it is heretical to be anything less than a Muslim fundamentalist – fundamentalism is the worldwide norm, not the exception, though, as Spencer says, Islam is not monolithic. It is deadly heresy (according to the Koran) to refuse to believe the plain, “perfect” language of the Koran. Examples of this satanic, religiously-driven murder are abundant (see recent story of a couple and 3 children (including infant) murdered in their sleep by a throat-cutting Palestinian – later celebrated in Gaza).
While the recent Koran burning by that fool “reverend” Terry Jones may be morally unconscionable, it pales in comparison with the Muslim murders of many innocent non-Muslim U.N. workers in Pakistan and Afghanistan. Americans should not, however, limit legitimate means of Constitutional free speech. We should make it clear that Christians condemn jihadist murder because we do not believe in the faith that promotes it. Also, that our Bible is the written word of God, not, as some uninformed Muslim advocate recently proclaimed, only a book written by man, which can be burned with less disrespect.

Mr. Spencer is director of Jihad Watch and author of The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades), The Truth About Muhammad, Stealth Jihad and The Complete Infidel's Guide to the Koran (all from Regnery-a HUMAN EVENTS sister company).


I’m running slower than usual today. So, just a few pieces of information and a couple of suggestions to assist anyone beginning disaster preparations.

Living in an active earthquake zone as all Californians do there are a couple of very basic issues we need to acknowledge. The first is drinking water and water for washing. All authorities agree we need at least one gallon of water per person, per day. We should assume, even if not probable, that we could be completely cut-off from city water. Many of our city water mains are very old and fragile. Many would fail in a strong quake.

Virtually every home and public building has two sources of drinkable water – the tank behind every toilet, and the water in our water heaters. But, it’s a lot easier to open a bottle of water. So, store a sufficient quantity of drinking water and replenish when necessary. We can live a long time without food, only a few days without water.

Official sources recommend 72 hours of food and water. If you plan to live only 72 hours after a major disaster (act of God or man-made) then this advice will suffice. If your plans are more ambitious, prepare for a longer period of time.

Read the history of Katrina, not the official reports, but the history as written by those who suffered through that catastrophe. This will inform you that if you are well prepared those who didn’t prepare will accuse you of “hoarding.” It never fails. And, they will, sooner or later, desire to share your preps whether you like it or not. So, it’s a good idea to facilitate a defense of your food and water. Reliable neighbors can help here. You Christians out there know that you have a duty to share with others, as long as your own family is not endangered; remember the nursery story of The Little Red Hen? How about the story of the Grasshopper and the Ant? (This lesson goes back thousands of years. Human nature doesn’t change. It’s also the issue of how many people should be let into the lifeboat. Get to know those neighbors with whom you can safely rely upon for mutual assistance. Have a plan for survival, other than relying of the incompetence of government. Let your trusted friends and relatives know about the plan.

A quick list of additional things you should have: Medications; first aid articles; at least one good flashlight; food you don’t have to cook; blankets or sleeping bags; a wrench to shut off the gas line; baby food, etc.; and the list can go on for pages. Have plans to stay in place (most likely) and for moving from the area if necessary. Have a “bug-out bag” ready.

Every emergency agency in America, public and private, has urged us to prepare for catastrophic disasters expected to occur in the near future. Fillmore learned about destruction after the Northridge quake. Less warned against is terrorism. If the country is attacked by weapons of mass destruction (biological, chemical, nuclear, dirty bomb) etc., it is a certainty that all freeways, highways, and roadways, will be clogged with traffic of every sort. Los Angeles, a very likely target of Islamic Jihadist attack, will disgorge millions of its residents. Knowing how single vehicle accidents disrupt our freeways every day, think of the mayhem which will result from the detonation of a weapon of mass destruction anywhere in Los Angeles County. Add to this the methodical mayhem expected from street and motorcycle gang predators, and the widespread panic of people desperately trying to evacuate the effected area.

Be well, and prepare for the worst. More thoughts on disaster preps later.


A couple of weeks ago I learned that certain people sharply disagreed with the conclusions of a recent editorial. Learning of displeasure of this sort was about as surprising as a weatherman learning of a passing cloud. What was surprising, however, was that the people in question lacked the intestinal fortitude to express that disagreement to my face. There was no honor in this girlish ambush. Christians have a duty to forgive, but not to forget. You may forgive the barracks thief, but only a fool would trust him after he is caught. Any other dissenters out there should know that I will never avoid stating my opinion on a controversial issue in order to avoid condemnation.

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I had intended to put up some information and suggestions on the subject of emergency preparations this week. This is something I’ve been interested in for years. Among my very few and abiding concerns is being placed in a deadly or dangerous situation without being prepared, that is a state of helplessness. This can sometimes happen when we really have no choice. More often than not we don’t have to be helpless, with a little common sense preparation. Maybe next week I will enumerate those basic preps. An abundance of emergency preparation literature is widely available, including the Red Cross, Homeland Security, etc. Just always remember that drinking water should come first.

The Japanese people were promised, during construction of their nuclear power plants, that in the event of a disaster water would be provided to everyone in need, within 3 days. As the 3-day timeline passed recently, 2 million citizens were still without water. They had relied upon government promises. Government promises are fiction.

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Be alarmed about how our Secretary of Defense has sabotaged our military recently. See: “Military training material on gays kissing behavior” here: . God, family, country – in that order only.


I was saddened to learn of the death this week of Manuel “Vic” Victoria Jr. He was among the first persons I met when I arrived in Fillmore 22 years ago. He had his shoe shop in the Masonic Lodge building next to the Gazette, at the corner of Central and Sespe Avenues. The Northridge quake which destroyed that landmark building devastated his business which he later moved to his residence. Vic lost a great many treasured artifacts and things he had collected over the years when his shop was destroyed.

Vic was a very congenial and interesting man. He was also a true “mountain man”, someone who knew the terrain of Ventura County like very few others. For decades he led hikes into the back country. I was fortunate to participate in an overnight hike up Pine Creek many years ago. His knowledge of nature and its creatures was acquired during a lifetime of exploring the wilderness. I vividly recall his strength as a hiker. It was hard to keep up with the unrelenting pace he set. Vic was also a skilled mason who built the home he lived in for decades.

Vic introduced many city folks to the wonder of the outdoors.

Rest in peace Vic. You will remain a rich part of Fillmore history.


Publishing a small weekly community newspaper is like no other work. It is a strange sort of undertaking. More than 25 years in this business has impressed that fact deep into my psyche. If you’re a person in need of many friends you would be unhappy in this job. If you are thin-skinned, with an aversion to religious and political controversy, this work would quickly wear you down, especially in a small town environment. You are uniquely on your own.

You learn a lot about humanity in this job, and humility as well when you absorb the social atmosphere peculiar to the town. You learn that very few residents really contribute to community success in a meaningful, dependable way. Most just attach themselves, and go along for the ride until the carrier dies out. You learn that the town is a true microcosm of the nation, with all its good and bad, weakness and strength. You grow to deeply respect the opportunity to freely state your opinion, sometimes in the face of withering dissent, as nowhere else in the world.

Among the hard lessons I’ve learned is, what appears to be deep is often shallow, and some things, at first appearing to be bad, have merit. Trust is rare, achieved only with time and trial. Over the years I’ve learned that energetic amicability is often untrustworthy, a sort of friendly usury for political, social, or professional profit. Maybe this is a universal truth. “All that glitters is not gold.”

If it’s true that the quality of your work can be assessed by the greatness of your enemies, with the Katzenjammers in mind I feel like an abject failure. However, with the inclusion of a false friend or two, I feel like a winner, because a treacherous “friend” is the supreme enemy. These are the obsequious, glad-handing Pharisees that poison society. The residue of such an experience is pure contempt, on both sides, and a sense of relief that one didn’t get to know the other person well. But, they can enhance the feeling of professional success if added to the enemies list, after wiping away the disgust. This is another factor driving me to comment on controversial public affairs.

This business can provide a broad understanding of small societies. I think, having published weekly newspapers in three states and five counties, I would someday like to put my findings into a book. Maybe, someday. The big question is: should I identify the players? I recall the immortal words of mankind’s greatest genius: “The evil that men do lives after them; the good is oft interred with their bones.” Maybe that should not be so.


Glen Beck has become the most important news commentator in the country during this past year. Bill O’Reilly remains number one in his news business, but only because he usually softens his comments by giving any benefit of the doubt to liberals, even when little doubt exists. Beck, on the other hand, doesn’t mince his words. His message is pure and direct. He also has the courage (unique in the business) to speak the truth regardless of the hammering he takes in the rest of the media. I admire him for that – though I can’t stand his radio program. Half of his radio time is spent on ads, and most of the rest frequently spent on childish, repetitious goofing-off with (it sounds like) a half-dozen clowns who laugh sarcastically at everything, continuously. It sounds like a frat party. In the morning, when I’m getting ready to go to work, I don’t have time for all this verbal grab-ass. No wonder he was recently dropped from New York’s biggest station. His radio presentation is utterly irritating. However, he’s still the only one telling it like it is on TV.

Beck’s website “The Blaze” is a valuable news source. It always has something important that no other media site has posted. The remaining media is almost all bought and paid for liberal (and anti-FOX News) bias.

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Thanks in large part to Beck’s TV show and website, the hugely uninformed American public is finally learning about the murderous Islamic threat in our midst. His show is projecting America’s future by revealing government corruption and its weakening effect on our national defense. At the center of America’s vulnerability is a profoundly ignorant and inexperienced presidency which is accompanied by a swarm of political hacks, crooks, and amateurs. Few people understand, or want to understand, our most dangerous enemy today – Islam, as it is understood and practiced by most of 1.3 billion believers. It is a faith of hate; hate of the Jew, hate of the Christian, and hate of all “unbelievers”. Another recent manifestation of this bloody hatred which characterizes most of Islam is the murder (Wednesday) of the only Christian member of Pakistan’s federal Cabinet, Shahbaz Bhatti, a 42-year-old Roman Catholic. See

America, indeed all of western civilization, has no true Islamic friends; we have only friends of temporary commercial convenience. Turkey is no longer a friend, if it ever was, and Saudi Arabia, while a commercial partner for decades, has persistently sought to undermine Christian America by providing billions to create a surreptitious Islamic infrastructure in our midst.

Rest in peace, Saint Shahbaz Bhatti. Your sacrifice was not in vain. “The blood of the martyrs is the seed of the Church.” (Quintus Septimius Florens Tertullianus: “Tertullian”; 160-220 a.d.).


The entire world seems to be disintegrating these days. It’s no wonder a majority of Christian churches believe the end times, or at least the tribulation is upon us. How is the terrestrial cookie crumbling? Let me count some ways.

In the City of Fillmore our new city manager pilgrim is making progress, in the wrong direction. Tuesday’s council agenda was slim, and expected to remain so because our city manager (who orders business) doesn’t do much. Among her few guiding suggestions, however, is hiring an assistant. With such low expectations it will not surprise me to see many more short agendas at many more short council meetings. But wait - Brian Sipes attended a county animal control agency meeting a few weeks ago, and informed us that a new cat house was being built, with a big screen TV – because “cats like big screen TV.”


Elsewhere, the cat is out of the bag.

Thanks to Obama’s blundering inexperience and Muslim bias, Egypt is lost to the west. Obama’s inexperienced, ignorant, arrogant, and inept political appointees in the state department, intelligence services, defense department, and homeland security, continue to believe the Muslim Brotherhood is a small, mostly innocuous secular political organization. They are learning, too late, that it is, instead, the foundation of the present Middle Eastern insurrection and the center of bloody hatred of Israel and America, and the entirety of Western civilization. Within weeks expect the entire Muslim Middle East to be in chaos, which in turn will spread chaos around the world, political, religious, economic, and military. Muslim countries around the world are lying in wait for the Christian West. Iran can’t wait to unleash the dogs of war (to bring on the “twelfth Imam”). As during the Crusades, weakness and indecisiveness in the western world is precipitating this disaster. We need another Lepanto.

I feel sorry for the many excellent men and women working in our military and security services. They do a fine if thankless job; it is the upper echelon of duplicitous incompetents in civil and military government that has dissipated our strength, integrity, and effectiveness.


The entire staff at the Fillmore Gazette wishes to extend its sympathies and condolences to Conway Spitler upon learning of the death of his beloved spouse, Tillie.

Tillie’s warmth and generosity was a frequent gift to the staff in past years. She will be fondly remembered. Married for 65 years; what a wonderful example.

Rest in peace, Tillie.


Any thinking American today must be concerned, to the point of being alarmed, by the state of our nation. The older I get the more my sense of alarm manifests itself as profound disgust. Frankly, when I continue to witness the precipitous decline of my country, brought on by its stubborn desire to renounce our once cherished Judeo-Christian heritage, I sense more than imminent danger, I see disaster.

I cannot help comparing the state of this nation today to what it was in my youth. It is fair to say that virtually everything has changed. Certainly that common fundamental American concern for ethical behavior and the primacy of Judeo-Christian standards in our daily lives is hugely diminished. It’s difficult to see what the “Christian” community believes today, even harder to understand what we believe in common.

Few remember that as late as the 1930s virtually all Christian churches condemned contraception. Certainly, up to the 1973 Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision, virtually all Christian and non-Christian Americans recognized the evil of aborting a child waiting to be born. Even more certainly no one would tolerate aborting a child in the last trimester. But today, the American president urges that even children born healthy following an unsuccessful abortion should be killed outright or by deliberate neglect.

America has embraced a fatal culture of death which has infected every branch of its society. Nowhere is this more clearly evident than in the revolting statistic showing that we have aborted more than 50 million preborn infants since 1973. Despite false statistics published by murder factories such as Planned Parenthood, 90 percent of these abortions were undertaken for reasons of social convenience.

As we Americans age, senior citizens should be concerned with those who feel entitled to decide who should live and who should die. Soviet communism and Nazi socialism did not hesitate to identify and condemn the “useless eaters” to an early death. We are headed in the same direction.

I also see a perfect storm of stupidity and naïveté in the actions of our government, our financial institutions, and in the ignorance of our electorate.

Our president is fundamentally ignorant of the responsibilities of his high office. It’s not his fault; he was voted into office because he was an articulate African American, not because he had any knowledge national defense, finance, the economy, or international relations. He’s just a slick-talking “community organizer”, an ideologue with a notable affinity for political radicals and radical Islam, who espoused socialism many years ago. Sadly, for the rest of us, our president brought with him into office a cloud of like-minded socialists, communists, former terrorists, scofflaws, and crooks. We can hardly blame the president; it was the millions of ignorant, stupid, blatantly racist members of our electorate who put him into office. There is no other explanation for the 98 and 70 percent voter margins of the last presidential election.

This tragic election outcome could not have occurred at a worse time. Our Community organizer-in-chief must deal with the many imminent life-and-death issues facing America, which will take more than the best talents of the best community organizer.

How can our community organizer deal with the world-wide Islamic jihadist revolutions, which seek to destroy America and all of western civilization? Look how he has bungled the recent Egyptian revolution. What can he be expected to do about the other Islamic nations (Pakistan, Iran, Syria, even Myanmar) having or seeking to produce atomic weapons? And, those criminal nations producing and marketing weapons of mass destruction, like North Korea, China and Russia?

Even Uncle Ugo in Venezuela wants his nuclear weapons.

Then, there is the problem of America going bankrupt and having the dollar dismissed as the world’s currency standard. And of course something close to 20 percent of Americans are out of work.

Our borders remain open and we are inundated with millions of illegal immigrants. Mexico has become essentially a failed state where even the army cannot control the $50 billion dollar drug business and where Americans are now routinely murdered by the cartels on American soil.

What’s a community organizer to do?

I wish it were possible to return to the 1950s, before everything began to fall apart in the 1960s. As much as I hate to admit it, at the present time, America for all her wondrous history is disintegrating. Amidst all of these issues, and two wars, our top military leaders have decided to permit openly homosexual persons into the ranks. How things have changed! I can’t imagine the guys I soldiered with at Ft. Bragg holding hands in ranks, or giving the First Sergeant a little peck on the cheek. I can readily understand confusion, disorder, even bloodshed, however, when this disgusting plan is implemented. Can anyone in their right mind imagine combat troops tolerating openly homosexual men in the ranks? How about SEALS?

Our military leaders, especially our Commander in Chief, have betrayed our fighting men and women, and the historical moral compass has been smashed. I would refuse to serve in such a military. I would strongly persuade any children of mine not to serve in such a military. It would be dishonorable.

This bastardly plan by military leaders of questionable character has already placed women in combat roles (soon to include submarine duty). It will be impossible to avoid drafting women in time of future wars.

America has lost its way; it is losing its soul. Only the strongest, most determined conservative majority in congress, and a new president with strong Judeo-Christian credentials, can save this nation at this late date.


Just a brief note on Tuesday’s city council meeting.

It’s hard to believe that our council majority (Patti, Gayle, Jamey, and Brian) can be so blatantly disingenuous, especially while being taped for TV. I just had to leave when these folks began to discuss the Grad Night Live location issue. It was like listening to maliciously mischievous children.

In short, this issue was created by a woman who had no standing to complain about what was then a fenced-in storage area by the bike path reserved for Grad Night Live.

The city has never owned the small property in question. The two businesses that did own the space had both permitted Grad Night to use it. There was ample room for a fire truck to access the packinghouse property in time of emergency. As a matter of fact, the closest fire hydrant to the packinghouse is located on the packinghouse property, across the tracks. The city ordered Grad Night to remove the existing containers, which was done at a financial loss. The city is now pretending to graciously replace those containers and permit Grad Night to remain in the same location. What a farce!

Instead of ignoring the complainant’s threats (and cheap race card remarks) and telling her to get out because she had no standing to complain, the council began to cower and respond. This response has taken-up hundreds of city hours, including three or four council agendas, gotten everyone angry to the point of threatening lawsuits, and engaging our city legal counsel. What has been the result? We are now back at square one, i.e. Grad Night retains the use of the property. What a waste!

To make matters worse, I had to listen to council-jammers Gayle, Brian, and Jamey prattle about how much the council has done to help Grad Night, and other non-profit organizations. Let’s get this straight you Katzenjammers. You are not the solution – you are the problem. You tried to cater to that trouble making woman who didn’t have enough common sense to know she had no standing to complain about the non-existing problem.
These three amigos (Brooks, Washburn, and Sipes) lied by denying the fact that they had promised Grad Night to replace the two containers they forced Grad Night to remove. This promise is (thankfully) caught on tape and will be posted to Here we have liars backing-up liars.

Be thinking about a recall.


Another example of devious dealings with the new council majority and its incompetent new manager, Yvonne Quiring, relates to the baseball backstop that will not be constructed for this year’s activity at our new Two Rivers Park.

Only one backstop was funded by the council majority. Quiring insisted that the state might come for the Redevelopment Agency (RDA) money, and we, therefore, couldn't afford to build the second backstop and other amenities.

The truth of the matter is that (now) former Director of Public Works, Bert Rapp, had carefully explained to the manager and council, just before resigning, that other money was available to complete this work. There is no legitimate reason for failing to fund both baseball park backstops.

There is also no reason for Jamey Brooks and Brian Sipes to push the council to replace Diane McCall on the Planning Commission. Since Diane has been a standout member of that commission for several years, this had to relate somehow to a personal issue (?). These two council members are the most inexperienced of the four Katzenjammers. The newly acquired feeling of power must have overcome these two pipsqueaks. In this case the Katzenjammers just continue with their program of sweeping away all opposition and eliminating the experienced old guard.

Again, $30,000 for a recall election is peanuts compared to the economic and personnel damage the Katzenjammers are causing the city.

Be thinking about a recall – it’s the right thing to do.


A postscript: The extension hiring of Linda Pappas Diaz was buried in the Warrant List at Tuesday’s meeting. No discussion, no open government.


Fillmore’s now former Director of Public Works (City Engineer) Bert Rapp, was covered with honors during what was his final council meeting, Tuesday evening. Rapp resigned his position last month after nearly 20 stellar years on the job. Though Bert remains silent about reasons for his departure, it is widely understood that dealing with the council majority (Patti Walker, Gayle Washburn, Jamey Brooks, and now Brian Sipes) has been frustratingly counter-productive. Added to the continuous disrespect received from these four know-nothing, micro-managing political wanabes was the last straw, a new, obviously incompetent, city manager who has caused unprecedented disruption among the entire city staff. Two letters of no confidence in the new city manager, from city employees, have recently been read aloud to the council. Measures, if any, being taken to resolve this unprecedented situation are being kept secret from the public. In her single year at her previous city manager job, our new manager Yvonne Quiring met the same fate – no confidence, and was relieved of her job.

Long time employees like Bert and City Planner Kevin McSweeney, were denied employment contracts by the council majority. Threats to job retention was the reason given for these contract requests. The council majority deemed an employee work review necessary – though no one was competent to do the review. As the council majority had done previously with former City Manager Roy Payne (another outstanding 20-year employee) hostile and disrespectful statements and a lack of cooperation and support led to Bert’s resignation. The council majority left no doubt that they intended to replace all top employees who had served previous councils. They apparently intended to do this by making working conditions intolerable. Thanks to the organized effort of people like failed former mayor and non-resident Gary Creagle, frenetic blogger Bob Stroh, and other members of the Katzenjammer Klub, the work environment did become intolerable, hostile, and outside job offers became too inviting to resist.

The new council majority has replaced almost all of our most talented and experienced employees, those with the longest tenure, in order to find the money for less experienced, less costly employees and to provide sufficient salary money for an assistant city manager.

Bert received an unprecedented number of awards upon resignation, including rare recognition from the California State Assembly on behalf of our new Assemblyman Jeff Gorell, presented by former Fillmore Mayor Ernie Villegas.
I fear our new Katzenjammer majority on the council is not finished with its purging of the best of our city government employees. They have run city government off the rails and into the swamp. Watch closely as more and more vitally important city issues go unresolved or swept under the carpet. Watch as more government functions go into the dark room of executive sessions.

Thanks, Bert, for 20 years of superb, imaginative, and effective city engineering.

I’m wondering if a $30,000 recall is really too expensive to rid city government of this utterly incompetent, and financially irresponsible new council majority.

Fillmore has sown the wind. The whirlwind is just around the corner.