Saturday, April 22, 2006

Part 2 of a crap trap

My response: Alright then. I guess I've worked tirelessly for
PACleanSweep since July because I want to sustain the status quo?
Apples and Oranges. But really, Apple Seeds to Apple Pie.

You want to get a free ride with what you did in the past? What you did in the past has nothing to do with what you are doing today. You can't rest on your laurels.
many people have raised the notion that Diamond's candidacy is controversial.
I don't buy that notion, for the reasons I mentioned. That is the crap trap. Because a lot of folks don't vote -- that does not mean that the best thing to do is not vote.

To me, (a repeat), the fact that Diamond is a candidate boils down to a decision of the individual, Diamond himself. I can't tell him what to do. You can't tell him what to do. If you want to say otherwise, you stand for less personal freedom. Diamond's decision to be a candidate or not should have nothing to do with you as his master. Diamond, nor anyone else, should NOT be a slave to anyone else.

The "controversial elements" of the Diamond effort should be (and could be) the CAMPAIGN, not being a candidate. There is no controversy to run or not to run. But I hope there is a lot of controversial aspects on what he says, how he says it, what messages people hear, and how this all unfolds with voters, media, supporters and other candidates. That is the "sustained conversations of the campaign" -- and that will rub people all different ways. That's the message and that's the essence of the interactions among politics. That's where the controversial elements MUST reside.

The BISHOP of the Pittsburgh Diocese could choose to run for PA Governor -- and that won't be a 'controversial decision.' He would be permitted to run for public office if he so chooses. If the Bishop shows up to a political TV debate and brings altar boys and the tall red Bishop's hat -- well, then comes a "controversial" moment.

Thanks for the spelling tips, BTW. I was in the middle of a lot of Earth Day fun and didn't touch up the typos until now.

Everyone has a right to be concerned. Everyone has a right to vote with their feet and leave organizations. Fine. But, you fail when you make a concern about the future into a threat. This goes to the core RIGHT -- the DIAMOND decision wasn't theirs to MAKE. To stay or leave is up to them.

I'm glad Diamond chooses to run his campaign with a 'my way or highway' approach. He should. It is his right, again. You are foolish to project otherwise onto him.

The board can be delicate now (OMG) -- after it shattered its good will. They (and posts like yours) screwed up and lost valued time and relationships. They over-reacted and injected more poison into the landscape than we'll ever be able to measure, today and for years to come.
Our opponents can now make the case that Diamond used PACleanSweep to promote himself have a valid point. Handling the matter DELICATELY was the RESPONSIBILITY of the Board of Directors.
Opponents always can make some valid points. You can't play only defense and win. You get points, they get points -- the winner is the one with the most points. The goal isn't to NEVER give the opponent a valid point. In football, you don't PUNT on first down. In hockey, you don't put all your players out there in the crease as GOALKEEPERS.

So, if Diamond did this Clean Sweep efforts to promote himself -- is that like the Governor going around the state to promote himself by giving away money (WAMS) on 4-foot cardboard checks? Of course there are valid points to be made on all sides. I'd say Diamond's self promotion is about 1,000 less than the acts of Rendell who spends money from the Commonwealth's taxpayers.

Likewise, if the Bishop runs for Governor, are people going to say he served the church as a way to promote himself too? Ask what's the real score?

The counter to my claim of "do-little board" being "I don't know cause I wasn't there" -- so I'm ignorant just proves me right again. Committed activists are not invisible. And, even if I have a blind spot, your counter should be more than a time card with 1,000 hours logged. And, you go back to the outset in that you want a free pass for past efforts for putting a turd into the well just now. This is today.

The next chapter isn't about a re-hash of the past chapter. You worked, fine. That's water over the dam. That's gone now. What is "fresh" is your repeat of a "crook" sling.

The student in class who got an "F" today can't go to the teacher and say, "I want an A on this paper because I got an A last month." Today's trash talk (without clear reasoning, IMHO) should NOT be ignored because of last month's good deeds. Deal with the time line of past, present and future. Otherwise, you're fooling yourself and your experiences and expectations are going to be at odds with many various forces.

This is a big state. You don't need to get along with everyone. There are saints and sinners -- and plenty of folks in the middle. Life is short. You can't please everyone. Fine....

Here is my take home advice: Live in the present. If we all lived in the present, we'd all be better off.

I hope you had a good day stuffing envelopes and picking up trash being that it is Earth Day and lots of folks were doing lots of things out and about today.


Anonymous said...

Part 3:

This email was posted to another list.

My reply will follow.

This is about a little more than "right or wrong." This is about an
organization founded on principles. Those principles were violated.

We're opposing the whole legislature because no one spoke up. No one
did "the right thing."

What do you think we've been doing for a month? Trying to "settle it
quietly." Again and again and again. Russ wants no part of it. For a
month he rebuffed all attempts to negotiate. He backpedaled out of
his latest "offer."

Since he refused to meet us half way (or 10% of the way or 1% of the
way) we ultimately had to either ALLOW Russ to violate the law or
speak up.

For a month this organization has been paralyzed because of Russ'
unilateral and illegal actions. Our ability to coordinate with
candidates and volunteers has been hamstrung. We aren't legally
allowed to raise or spend money.

This is a terrible last resort. I tried to stop it and tried deal
directly with Russ. As you know I'm certainly not against Russ and
have volunteered for him in the past.

But there's no reasoning with him. It's Russ' way or the highway.
This movement will go on without him and we will be stronger and
more principled without him.


Mark Rauterkus said...

If, "This is about a little more than "right or wrong." -- THEN -- it is a HOLY war. Then it is a PERSONALITY WAR.

Frankly, if it is MORE than about RIGHT and WRONG -- then I'm not interested. THAT is CRAP TRAP # whatever. Thanks for being so brazen right from the first line of the post to signal just how out of touch you really are.

Mark Rauterkus said...

The organization's principles were NOT violated. The organization's efforts were, IMHO, advanced.

The aim was to throw the bumbs out. Rendell is one of the bumbs, if not the biggest one. And, Swann, with his comfy ties to the chief pay jacker, and with his ties to the majority party in the house and senate (the Rs), is a tight friend of the bumbs and has not distanced himself from their ways or influence.

And, if there is a problem with some proceedure -- what is not talked about -- this has been fixed with the exit of Russ Diamond from the roles at PA Clean Sweep. So, it is OVER. Done. Don't dwell.

Mark Rauterkus said...

This again makes no sense:

"Trying to "settle it
quietly." Again and again and again. Russ wants no part of it. For a
month he rebuffed all attempts to negotiate. He backpedaled out of
his latest "offer."

Russ says nothing -- and that is as quiet as one can get. Nothing from nothing means nothing -- or quiet.

To backpedal out of the organization is a silent exit. That's what you wanted. That's what you got. So, you don't cry the blues today. Unless, of course, you want a holy war.

Frankly, I'd not backpedal -- I'd RUN AWAY AS FAST AND FAR as possible. You are righter than right and self-imploded.

Mark Rauterkus said...

This "law breaker" or "law protector" claim is crap too. You are not the Attorney General. You don't have a case. You don't have a law breaker. You didn't file a court case.

I've said before, a candidate isn't a candidate in the eyes of the judge in PA Courts, IMNSHO, until he has put in his papers to get onto the ballot. That is the benchmark you'll need to consider before you hang your hat on law breaker status. And, that won't happen until August 1.

To put a case against RUSS in a criminal way (you can't) -- or in a civil way -- you gotta file. You shouldn't file. You should let it go. And, you should think about what it means to casting that first stone -- or in your case, that next stone.

Speak up all you want -- but don't call a guy a criminal. And now that you've spoken up -- you've lost all credit.

Mark Rauterkus said...

You wrote: "Our ability to coordinate with candidates and volunteers has been hamstrung."

No joke. YOU HUNG YOURSELVES. YOU SELF-IMPLODED. Trust has been lost, forever, by you and yours. You're sunk and now just worried about counting the bodies on the ship at the bottom of the ocean.

Your abilities are to be questioned. You can't coordinate by putting poison out elsewhere and expect to be the new pipper.

Mark Rauterkus said...

"We aren't legally
allowed to raise or spend money."

Here is where you lost me again. IF YOU WANT to, go out and raise money -- do it. Fork. Go a new route. Make a new PAC (political action committee). Be the PA Clean WACKERS. Be the PA CLEANEST SWEEPERS, but that might be toooo close for comfort. Be the PA SUPER Sweepers, if you feel that would be good to hitch on SWANN's bandwagon.

To set up a new PAC, PA SUPER SWEEPERS, takes a about 4 sheets of paper and a trip over to PayPal.

Then you could raise money. Don't sing the blues -- fix it. Then move on. The name "move on" has already been taken -- but this is what you need to do, MOVE ON.

Don't bend over and meet someone 50-percent or 99-percent of the way -- just do you own thing 100% of the way.

YOU SHOULD form a new group, PA SUPER SWEEPERS. Do it in 4 hours and live in the present.

All the money you raise could be leveraged for a lot of good.

Mark Rauterkus said...

If you know it is terrible -- don't go there. "This is a terrible last resort."

If you tried to stop it -- you failed. Just go your own way. You can't stop another person. You can't push yourself on others and expect to have people cheering for that.

"I tried to stop it and tried deal
directly with Russ. As you know I'm certainly not against Russ and
have volunteered for him in the past."

What is in the past is in the past. That doesn't give you a free ride today. Take your knowledge, relationships and insights and re-up on a new organizational effort for the weeks and months to come.

Mark Rauterkus said...

"But there's no reasoning with him. It's Russ' way or the highway.
This movement will go on without him and we will be stronger and
more principled without him."

There is no reason to reason with you as you are unreasonable and you wanted a quiet solution.

The movement can't go on if you look in your rear view mirror, time and time again.

If you want to be stronger -- you go for it. Prove it. Do it. The hot air I see now just feels like bad breath.

Go brush your teeth, be "super clean" and sparkle right into the primary and general election. Let us know when and where you have a victory party.

Mark Rauterkus said...

I posted this to a public group:


A person might have posted something that started with:

... This is about a little more than "right or wrong." ....


If it is more than "right or wrong" -- then it is perhaps a 'holy war.'

Nuff typed here. I'm still putting my insights on my blog so everyone can see them there.

In my post -- I've given an EXIT idea... My $.02 suggestion, begin "PA SUPER Sweep."

Open a PAC bank account, get a Pay Pal direct deposit. You could be collecting money by lunch on Monday.

+ Looking in the rear view mirror is stupid.

+ Waiting around for a month to collect money is stupid.

+ To move around the deck chairs on the sunk ship is stupid -- while you are at the bottom of the ocean already.

+ To compromise, 1% or even 99% or 50% -- on your dreams for an organization seems stupid too. If this is, as you said, 'more than right and wrong' -- then you should chart a new course.

1. FORK,
2. Re-form,
3. show results.

A real reformer wouldn't be so stupid as to sink his own ship and stay there. Even a stupid scorched earth policy would necessitate that the ones that burn the village move along after setting fires.

In the high-tech world, it is okay to FORK a project if you have different goals, different objectives, different understandings. Even if you don't call it a 'fork' -- then do a MOLT. That is okay in nature. Shed the old skin -- and move along. Or, do the hermit crab dance and leave one shell behind and scramble to another.

But the sillyness here has been to dance between two shells -- in no-man's land.

I'm done with this holy war. The reasoning here is over-cooked, spent, self-destructed.

You're only way out, unless you want to live in an endless storm of pity, (pity for you, pity on you) -- is to FORK and make PA SUPER SWEEP and do it in the next minutes, not days. This is the only way to ever gain back any respect. Choose to live in the present and future and dodge the pity that would otherwise shadow you at ever turn hence forth.

Politics isn't about the past. Politics is about the future. Play that game with the big players.


Mark Rauterkus
412 298 3432 = cell

Anonymous said...


Thanks for your views. Your suggestions are noted.

"Forking" was considered in the calm before the storm. I know
several board members were on the verge of resigning months ago -- I
was one of them -- to carry the reform banner in other ways.

There were coordinators who were in the same boat. They were going
to throw in the towel or form splinter groups in their own area.
They were telling US that they had bad feelings about Russ'
perceived opportunism, and if he ran for office they would leave

We knew this, and we knew Russ was running for governor. We knew it
was important for PACleanSweep to have strong leadership and handle
Russ' candidacy appropriately. That can't be done from the
sidelines. That can't be done by resigning.

Russ is great at exaggerating and spinning the board's level of
involvement. If he had you believing the board consisted of "waste-
aways" then he was intentionally misleading and deceiving you.
Ironically, Russ claims his actions were a response to a lack of
planning by the board. So he demanded unconditional resignations
without outlining HIS vision for the future.

Serving as a director charges a person with fiduciary and management
responsibilities. One doesn't exercise that responsibility by
resigning. One only forfeits it.

This isn't about Russ' candidacy. It's about what Russ was willing
to do to get what he wanted. It's about Russ' disregard for the
rules of this organization. It's about ensuring that PACleanSweep
remains non-partisan and objective. The board members who refused to
resign did so because they did not have trust Russ Diamond
completely. They couldn't read his mind and could not be certain
that he would make the right decisions. They chose not to forfeit
their rights and responsibilities in guiding PACleanSweep, and Russ'
actions in the days and weeks since have shown everyone that they
were right NOT to give him complete control.

So, it's about right and wrong. It's about principle. And it's about
more. Your suggestion that we "walk away" may have been a solution 3
months ago, but it's not viable today.

At this point the integrity of the organization is in question.
Since those who resigned and lack legal authority refuse to obey
Pennsylvania law or even compromise, it appears that only the courts
can set things right and restore dignity to this movement.

Mark Rauterkus said...


"At this point the integrity of the organization is in question."

Darn tootin'.

The integrity of the organization is in question -- and it won't ever
come back. It is sunk.

If you didn't fork 3 months ago, and you didn't fork 3 days ago ---
you should have. If you don't fork NOW -- when you gotta -- then it is
clear to me what's up.

If you don't fork now, then the aim was to destory the organization
and destroy any and all integrity. To not fork is to stay the course
of victory of a lost cause -- sunk -- without integrity.

Russ is gone from PA Clean Sweep. You all need to go from the depths
of the ocean floor too.

Stay sunk and get pity. Or, make a dash and get a fresh start and
opportunity for progress. Your move. Duty for the future calls.

"Since those who resigned and lack legal authority refuse to obey
> Pennsylvania law or even compromise, it appears that only the courts
> can set things right and restore dignity to this movement."

The courts won't set things right. The courts won't restore dignity to
the movement. Solutions from the courts always either suck a lot or
suck a little. If you want a good solution -- then you fork, walk
away, move on.

If you want to suck a lot or suck a little -- keep going to the courts.

If you think that the courts can set things right and restore dignity,
you ARE hoplessly lost.

I beg to differ on the notion of 'management' from a board. And, as to
fiduciary responsibility, it takes a lot of responsibility to resign
an organization -- as in terminate it. You need to FORFEIT the PAST.
Chart a course with a new org for the future. You can't stay where you
are and do any good any longer.

Start a new campaign on Monday. Call it PA Super Sweep.

BTW: Domains are available, if you check,, .org, .net

I'd use that blogspot thing you already got as a HEADSTONE. Nuff said.

Good night.