Burlington Derailed — The Continuing Story

31 December

More Drunks Needed

Case Business Lost to Grand Island Plant?


This could have been a great year for new jobs in Burlington. As in the 300 jobs Case wanted to bring to Burlington to build new grain tables. All the grants were in place to get the ball rolling for Burlington. I'm surprised the advertiser didn't jump all over this as they might have sold 5 or 10 more papers a day to make their circulation go up so they could increase advertising rates.

But as usual the hard drinking union didn't want anyone working more than 40 hours per week. The new jobs required everyone to work 6 days a week. This would be very bad for union people to work that many hours. It would take away from their drinking time and that is not good.

Just ask the ex-mayor. How many people in a sixty mile radius of Burlington would want to work 6 days a week????? At a high wage, not casino wages, but real wages.

The union probably doesn't know of anyone. Maybe there isn't enough drunks to fill that many jobs in the union.

So let's all stand tall with our union pin on our hat and wave good bye as the jobs pass by on their way to Grand Island, Nebraska. They must really be stupid in Grand Island to let Case bring those high paying jobs to their town.

If your union---Vote Poluticratic. We stand for Less Work and More pay.


P.S. Rod Blagojevich is praying that Mike Sweet help him justify his actions!!!

Lost jobs? What the hell is wrong with the local UAW? They all have enough money to play golf at Black Lake? Promised a ride in the UAW jet? Promised a ride in the drunk ex-mayor's golf cart out at Case? Or promised a ride home from the strip bar?

I hope this isn't true.


06:15:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Heland Hosing County Taxpayers On Needless Mileage

Also on Tuesday's KCPS Big Show 1150 AM Fred and 7 heard from Large Mouth Gas Bag Supervisor Jeff Heland. Heland was expounding on his super big role of excess spending.

Large Mouth said that he and soon-to-be supervisor Dan Cahill were headed to Oakville to meet with Oakville residents about their flood problems.

Former Burlington mayor John Sandell called in and asked Large Mouth. "What county is Oakville in? After Large Mouth said, "What?" Sandell repeated his question. Large Mouth said, "Louisa."

Sandell asked, "Are you charging us mileage?" Heland replied, "I sure am."

To which 7 asked, "Both ways?" Heland said, "Yes I am!"

Heland, "We've kinda adopted it (Oakville)."

So there you go. Large Mouth Ass Heland out acting like he's Angelina Jolie using free taxpayer money to spread his nonsense and stupidity. And Cahill crazy enough to get in the car with him and go on this junket.

And why are we paying mileage to Heland when he should be driving a county car? The ghost of Hoschek lives on.


06:12:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Hoschek Looking For a Job

On Tuesday's KCPS Big Show 1150 AM Fred and 7 interviewed outcast Tim Hoschek.
These are some of Hoschek's memorable radio moments.

When asked about his standout achievement, Hoschek replied, "Lots of things passed I didn't vote for." Some things passed without a vote like the ethanol plant giveaway.

Is a real job in Hoschek's future? "I think the supervisor's job is a real job." I guess that's why he didn't attend budget meetings for years on end.

Hoschek said, "I've been waiting for Obama's staff to call." What for? To park cars at the inauguration?

About his career in conservation, "I was in conservation for 6 years." And fired from job that along with losing his job for being the dumbest cement truck driver ever.

When pressed for his abilities, Hoschek said was well qualified for a job in "Administration...hopefully, maybe...maybe market your radio station." That idea fell on 40 days of prayer along with a short "I don't think so" from Fred. That probably, was Fred's most succinct, pragmatic business decision.

Hoschek said his door was open for a future political run. But "We have good representation in Des Moines with Cahoon and Courtney." On air giggling was heard in the background.

Asked about a city council job Hoschek brought up the fact his grandfather was mayor and making good money until the city changed its form of government while Grandpa Hoschek was in office. Maybe that change came when Grandpa's foot slipped off the clutch of the Dodge after too much eggnog.

One thing was extremely evident. Tim Hoschek needs a job and he is best qualified to wrangle carts at Big Lots.


06:10:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Where is Liberal Zealot Mike Sweet?


How come we haven't been inundated with Mike Sweet's idiotlogical liberal zealot ramblings on the Democrat's poster child Blagojevich? If there ever was a Democrat that needs understanding and explanation, it's the crook of the Lincoln State.

Cat got his tongue?


06:00:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Brower Drive Plowed - Lucas Street Still Lost?


I just thought the people of Burlington would like to know that since it was made public about the Recplex road and Brower drive I started to keep an eye on it.

I drive by there twice dailey. I have to be honest,I wish my road was giving one tenth as much attention as these two non-traveled roads.

When you drive by and they are pushed all the way to the curb you like to think that your road on the south side is going to be plowed. Then to get home and be deflated.

Why are these two streets so important over streets like in front of the high school?...Just a thought, thanks for letting me vent.

South Hill Resident

Brower Drive. Now there's a Shirley MacClaine moment of transcendental ineffectiveness rewarded with a street sign.


05:58:00 - SPIKE - No comments

County Handout


Well, its official those court house workers got a paid holiday because of
an ice storm while no one else in the county did. If you can't make it to
work or the dimwits close down the place of work you shouldn't get paid.

This is just another example of fiscal irresponsibility in my opinion. This
is just another case of people on the dole getting something for nothing.
Like county workers that get their insurance cost if they don't take the
insurance (city does the same thing). This is money that should be put back
into the county general account and not given away as though they had it
coming for refusing insurance.

Then we have the excess holidays they get, thirteen paid days off when most
private sector workers are lucky to get nine days off per year.

To me it's just plain sickening that state, city and county workers are
pampered far in excess of those paying their salaries through excessive

When will the free ride for government employees come to a halt, enough is


You know the old saying, "If there is a court house handout you will find Tim Hoschek there.


05:55:00 - SPIKE - No comments

SEIRPC Farhengoofen


I see the starlings have roosted downtown.


No relation to Wir fahren Volkswagen.

05:50:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Shid Auld Expense Accounts Bee Firgot


Was Spike at the party? A better bon voyage for local taxpayers is hard to imagine.

Hoschek put his mouth in the right place claiming a concern for how money was spent. His expense account betrayed his heart. Even if his heart had been in the right place, the wattage to Hoschek's CPU was insufficient to carry through.

A ten vote margin was all that pulled the plug.

Des Moines County can celebrate this New Year's Eve thanks to Spike. Derailed exposed the Hoschek problem. It is a safe bet that every one of the ten votes making the difference checked into Derailed for details.

At the end of 2010, let us pray we will not be troubled with Heland again.


Hoschek might have gotten those 11 votes he needed had he graveled the county road. Hoschek is too stupid to realize that more often than not, more than one person lives on a road.

One less idiot.


05:37:57 - SPIKE - No comments

School Vote for James Madison


The BCSD is one of the sickest organizations in the state for holding a vote
on the worst day in years to secure another new school which passed by a
meager three percent of the registered voters.

That vote should have been postponed until the weather was half-way decent;
so the voters could get and vote.

This entire town is a joke when only three percent of voters can swing a
major construction project for a school that will not make one child any
smarter than they would be with the old building. Teachers and parents make
students smart and not bricks and mortar.

We can have a half inch of snow and the dimwits cancel school; so why
couldn't they cancel the James Madison vote until a known better weather day
was predicted.

School administrators and school boards are ignorant if they think bricks
and mortar will make up for the failures of teachers and parents. As usual
we go for the tail rather than the head, where the problem of government
education exists. What normal progressive well governed town would build
all new schools at one shot when they have as many as Burlington? Well
guess what, Burlington a city of misfortunates and losers seems to think
this is smart thinking and the money tree will never run out.

Continuing to raise taxes to fund education has gotten completely out of
hand and now our future relatives will be forced to rebuild all the schools
again at the same time provided Burlington is still a viable city.
Burlington is a city on the decline; so why waste the money on schools that
will probably not be required within the next 20 years.


Monument builders. Nothing more. Not an ounce of business or common sense among the entire school board or administration.


03:09:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Welfare Will Make Everybody Rich


Now the retailers have their hands out. Will this ever end?

There are no shortage empty store fronts downtown. Get a P. O. Box, claim a Jefferson St. address and wait for the welfare checks to make your rich. Do we still need quiet crossings?

No doubt the little grant grubbing tax maggots at "Grow" Greater Burlington and City Hall are submitting their handiwork claiming quiet crossings in downtown Burlington are part of rebuilding America. Those crossings are much more important than a new Cascade Bridge.

01:15:00 - SPIKE - No comments

30 December

Don't Let The Door Hit Your Dumb Ass

Hoschek farewell is today


I think I'm gonna to mist up. Today is Hoschek's going away party. How can Heland ever spend all the money by himself?

Another one down, lots more to go.

No shame



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Nice Work if You Can Get It

"FEMA is the most ineffective, inefficient, unproductive, bloated political cow ever to hit America.

I would not want FEMA on my resume."


If you can list SEIRPC (Southeast Iowa Regional Planning Commission) on your resume, do you have a leg up for a job with FEMA? Has Hoschek filled out a job application with FEMA?


Hoschek can't spell FEMA. But he has a way about getting a job he isn't qualified for and doesn't deserve.

So he might be a fit.


02:52:40 - SPIKE - No comments

Robert Muir Co.


I thought I'd take a look and see if Mr. Palmquist was still at Robert Muir Co. and I couldn't find him anywhere on their web site.

I wonder if he was a casualty of the Manor failure?


Too bad the guilty haven't been held accountable here yet. Maybe when the principal payments kick in the taxpayers will catch on.


02:50:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Management by Golfing Around

"The day the unions hire professional managers will be the day the unions become a force to reckon with."


Bond markets are depressed. Are municipal bond salesmen yet distressed? This sounds like a job for an ex-city manager. Super Slagle to the rescue. The links at Black Lake are far fancier than Flint Hills.

Can Ell hitch a ride on the union's corporate jet fleet and play a round for old times sake, or will the Southeast Iowa Regional Airport be shut down? There maybe a shortage of patchcrete when warmer weather returns.

Do as the Advertiser advocates. Drive to Moline.


Crooked Manager Springsted bond salesman Bruce Slagle is qualified. Incompetent, self-aggrandizing and rotten to the core. He can screw union members just as easily as he did taxpayers.


02:49:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Burlington on a Grander Scale


Economic chaos and undesirable immigrants, sounds like Burlington. What is your prediction on Burlington disintegrating?

Jeane Dixon

02:48:09 - SPIKE - No comments

City Could Improve Finances


There are a couple of items the city could off load to the private sector
and relieve the taxpayer to a certain extent.

The first would be the RecPlex and the second would be the water park out at
Fun City. Both have been constant losers since their inception and have no
benefit to the taxpayer in anyway what's-so-ever.

The Burlington taxpayer has had enough bad luck financially and most of it
created by elected and hired city officials bent on destroying our livelihoods
through constantly perpetrating disastrous decisions that should be
restricted to the private sector and not the public sector.

Hugh egos and dreams of grandeur by local officials will lead to the total
collapse of Burlington financially, if it hasn't already. Lest we all
forget the disastrous railroad lawsuit as another example of poor government
along with the lives ruined out at the Manor, which now serves as a symbol
of local dimwit government and their stooges out of control and driven by

Happy New Year Burlington you voted these losers in; so now we all suffer.

Disgusted and Depressed

02:35:28 - SPIKE - No comments

Click Here and Go Away


Click Here to Take the Passenger Transportation Development Plan Survey

Click the link to access a survey for the Region 16 Passenger Transportation Development Plan. The purpose of this plan is to identify and implement coordination opportunities for regional passenger transportation. For more information, please contact Zach James at zjames@seirpc.com or 319-753-5107 Ext. 213.

I was checking the web concerning our regional bus service. I wanted to suggest there should be bus rides from Burlington to the Quad City Airport. Mt. Pleasant gets rides to Cedar Rapids, so why not our closest airport where jets provide service? I clicked to do the survey and got this: This survey is currently closed. Please contact the author of this survey for further assistance.

Are all the buses too busy ferrying Tapp and Hinkle's unskilled laborers to Columbus Jct.? Would buses linking to commercial air service not shut down for nearly a week after a routine storm be unreasonable?

I. C. Delay

Are they implying there is a plan? It sure doesn't seem to be working except the chapter on crime.


02:32:28 - SPIKE - No comments

29 December

Courtney Hides From Public View - Most Rats Do!


Apparently our Senator Courtney failed to show up at a meeting of the
Burlington Community School Board on Dec. 15th to discuss legislative issues
for the 2009 session. However, Reps. Tom Sands and Dennis Cohoon showed up
as scheduled.

Then on the 20th he failed to appear at the Burlington/West Burlington
Chamber of Commerce Eggs-N-Issues, although both Sands and Cohoon were again
present as scheduled. Isn't the chamber one of the organizations that
promotes the use of illegal immigrants in the Iowa workforce?

One of the participants who had driven by Courtney's home noticed his truck
there and the lights on at 6:55 AM. During the meeting Dennis Hinkle
informed said person that the senator would not be able to make it. Then at
8:22 a.m. this same person passed Sen. Courtney on Summer Street heading
toward the Armory.

I would venture to believe Sen. Courtney's agenda is ranked as follows;
Courtney first, democratic party second, lobbyist third, dim witted lawyer's
fourth, half-wit city politicians fifth and maybe the people, who are dumb
enough to vote for him, come in last on the agenda along with those that are
smart enough not to vote for him.


Didn't you know Senator Courtney is very busy. Busy tying his shoe laces.

Tying his shoe laces is always better than being confronted for answers. And
believe me, Courtney has no answers.


11:38:24 - SPIKE - No comments

The U. A. W. School of Real Estate Development

UAW Flies to Washington Hearings On Their Corporate Jet


Is this where our local political hacks learned about real estate development? When does the federal government bail us out?


I wonder how the rank and file UAW members feel about their leaders losing $23 million in union dues for their Black Lake Golf Club?

Or their UAW leadership running a stable of corporate jets that spend most of the winter weekends in Palm Springs getting their tans renewed?

The day the unions hire professional managers will be the day the unions become a force to reckon with. Until then, they will continue to be iterations of Courtney, Heland, Hoschek, the drunk ex-mayor, and Anderson. Little people, swaggering in little steps from curb to curb looking for scraps.


11:33:36 - SPIKE - No comments

Minorities Take Control


I've found out one thing over the past couple of years regarding our new
residents. They have no concept of what a "Handicapped" sign means and what
there purpose is.

Every time I go shopping here in the Burlington area I find that the recent
influx of minority persons have mistaken "Handicapped" signs as a reserved
parking spot for them. This morning at Walgreens there was a minority
parked in the very fist handicapped spot right next to the door blaring out
the rap music while his young female friend was in the store. There is
never a handicapped sticker or banner anywhere to be seen. They constantly
break the law at the expense of the handicapped person that must park
elsewhere. Just about every parking spot was open by he chose the
handicapped spot right next to the door.

It's the same when they spot one of their friends as they drive by; they
stop right in the ongoing traffic lane and chat while blocking all traffic.
Central Avenue going south from Division was notorious for this method of

I told the guy at the Walgreen's checkout counter about the guy parked in the
handicapped zone and he told me they even park right in front of the doors,
blocking others from entering the store.

There use to be an old saying "When in Rome do as the Romans do," while in
Burlington I guess the same saying is interpreted as, "Do as you wish."

I've also noticed the minorities like to swagger down the streets while
expecting traffic to go around them or stop. This habit has nothing to do
with the condition of the sidewalks or the weather it's just another
paradigm, in my opinion.

Maybe I'm being picky but "Handicapped" does not mean special parking for
minorities or anyone else undeserving of the privilege. In Burlington I've
seen many people parking in "Handicapped" parking places with no
repercussions at all.

I'm also of the opinion there are many that have the privilege that are not
deserving of having it but obtained it under false pretenses or are using a
truly handicapped persons credentials, automobile and/or parking sign that
hangs from the mirror.

My true feeling is that people that park illegally in "Handicapped" zones
are of the bottom feeder species and should, at a minimum be tarred and


11:24:44 - SPIKE - No comments

FEMA Robbery


To no one's surprise, FEMA itself is another broken down government albatross robbing the taxpayer to line its own pockets.

The Government Accountability Office found that in the wake of Katrina, "purchase cards" issued by Homeland Security that were supposed to pay for relief supplies instead were used to buy such items as 63-inch plasma TVs, 100 laptop computers (all of which mysteriously disappeared) and 20 boats for which the government paid double the retail price.

Once again the taxpayer has another source of government failure both on and off the job, by an organization that has failed in just about every aspect of its charter to the American people.

Of course like the Pentagon there was little to no efforts made to hold anyone accountable for stealing taxpayer money for personal gain.

Our Federal Government has become a den of thieves and liars mirroring the congress whose record of honesty and good faith would stretch the limits of any code of conduct by a tax funded organization.

Our own Senator Harkin is listed as the 27th wealthiest person in Congress, based on the minimum net worth reported on financial disclosure forms.

The American taxpayer can no longer trust its elected civil servants currently in office or the executives and other bottom feeders hired to run government.

Government has become the only thing the American people should fear as proven by the recent economic failure perpetrated by the congress itself. Congress has always been the creature of special interests, and can never be fixed. Until the average American recognizes that he or she has been duped, the decline caused by the corruption of the republic will not be arrested.)


FEMA is the most ineffective, inefficient, unproductive, bloated political cow ever to hit America.

I would not want FEMA on my resume.


11:23:14 - SPIKE - No comments

28 December

Arctic Ice At Point of No Return

Scientists have found the first unequivocal evidence that the Arctic region is warming at a faster rate than the rest of the world at least a decade before it was predicted to happen.

"The observed autumn warming that we've seen over the Arctic Ocean, not just this year but over the past five years or so, represents Arctic amplification, the notion that rises in surface air temperatures in response to increased atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations will be larger in the Arctic than elsewhere over the globe," Julienne Stroevefrom teh US National Snow and Ice Data Centre said. "The warming climate is leading to more open water in the Arctic Ocean. As these open water areas develop through spring and summer, they absorb most of the sun's energy, leading to ocean warming.

22:57:39 - SPIKE - No comments

26 December

Regional Planning Buses Paid For With Federal Dollars


Brian Tapp from Regional Planning says there is no Federal money involved in the Tyson meat shuttle. Who paid for those buses to begin with?

I'll tell you who. The taxpayers paid for those buses with Federal dollars.

Got Answers

Maybe Large Mouth Heland is on to something. Maybe.


03:30:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Last Hoschek Damage Done


I see that idiot Hoshack couldn't leave office without screwing us just one more time. We're gonna pay for his mistakes for a long time.


Think of this way. Maybe it's the last damage done. And that is a good thing.


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25 December

God Save You Poor Taxed Citizens

New lyrics for the tune God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen

God save you poor taxed citizens
The worst is yet to come
The drunks and fools that you let rule
Have made decisions dumb
A Manager not kept in place
Our town now thus disgraced
Oh tidings of insufficient funds
Misery comes
Oh tidings of insufficient funds

God save you poor taxed citizens
Your infrastructure old
A railroad lawsuit rich with gold
The lie in secret sold
"Without merit" said the judge
We must pay Power's toll
Oh nobody but the lawyers won
Bill items none
Oh nobody but the lawyers won

God save you poor taxed citizens
You have been truly screwed
A vacant lot called Manor Mall
Is coming payment due
State Senator responsible
His office did not lose
Oh why do we re-elect the dumb
Nothing right done
Oh why do we re-elect the dumb

God save you poor taxed citizens
The worst yet to be
Our children did not make this mess
And from it they do flee
The Chamber's answer "ride our bus"
An emigrant crime spree
For your safety you better buy a gun
The hoodlums still come
For your safety you better buy a gun

God save you poor taxed citizens
You've no one else to blame
You foist these leeches on yourself
"Keep Burlington the same"
Remain in blissful ignorance
The Advertiser's game
Oh tidings of taxes and decay
Worse every day
Oh tidings of taxes and decay

Slagle's Clause

Now, if we just had singer on staff.....


13:41:31 - SPIKE - No comments

Silent Night - Traditional in Burlington

Silent lot
Hold the bag lot
Blame as "blight"
Money's tight
Round yon for sale sign
Slagle and Ell
Courtney, Hinkle
Our taxes to swell
Reap what ignorance has wrought
Reap what ignorance has wrought

Traditional (In Burlington)

13:40:00 - SPIKE - No comments

The Power of Advertising or the Serendipity of Sloth


What took the Adviser so long reporting the lack of deicer at the Airport? Have there truly been no commercial flights since last Friday? Is business so bad, nobody cared?

Was this kept quiet so those expecting to meet a plane would go away mad and drive like hell to Moline? The Quad City Airport to the rescue, as well as spending a few dollars with the Advertiser too.

Given the Advertiser's inadequate initiative, I think it was not on their Air Traffic Control Atari software. If it does not pop up in search engine, it ain't news.


We wonder why there is a shortage of deicer material at the airport. The shortage was wide spread knowledge back in July.

Why are we stuck?


13:38:03 - SPIKE - No comments

A Christmas Carol Starring Bruce Slagle - A Tale Of Crooked Deals



I have a solution for the city to raise money for stupid projects they continue to support. You know "FAMILY" beer parks and uprooting elderly people out of their homes cause it's good for Burlington. They are good leaders, just ask 'em sometime after a council meeting down at the Sombreo. Oh and make sure the cops don't stop anyone leaving the Som after a council meeting. The stats on crime might go up and we don't want to bite the hand that feeds us.

Anyway, The city needs to have a play at the auditoriam. The Manor Mall Christmas Carol. The cast might include Robert Muir or Bruce Slagle as Christmas past, Doug Worden as Christmas present, hmmmmmmmmmm let's see we have heard there are at least a dozen or so who want to be Christmas future. Maybe a tobacco outlet or a mirror store? Smoke and mirrors where have we heard this before.

This could be another way to gain revenue from the sheep of Burlington for the great projects created by the city council. Sell em a ticket for the play and we don't have the cast set in stone yet. OK, we will deal with it later and everything will be OK.

Sound familiar.


An epic chronicle of local disasters.


04:22:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Publisher Steve Delaney 's Christmas Present for Burlington

Publisher Steve Delaney sets community values with his continued support of the Moline Airport. Even so far as to have his pop-up ad right in the article about the Burlington Airport.

02:34:00 - SPIKE - No comments

24 December

Heland Wants Answers - Tell Tapp & Hinkle to Look In The Mirror


Brian Tapp from Regional Planning wants to dispel rumors of his involvement in the crime wave scandal he brought to Burlington.

Tell them to look in the mirror. That will dispel the rumors on how it started.


They only use one-way mirrors.


12:20:00 - SPIKE - No comments

12:20:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Good Investments?


I agree with what Appalled had to say on the manor and the waterpark, but one thing bothers me. I don't believe the city council or the city manager could get into this by themselves. I believe they had a lot of help from Randy Wingard. Is he a democrat? Because he's the one that led Slagle around by his nose to get us some of these good deals that we have.

Look for great deals in the future from Mr. Wingard, Doug Worden and the" I don't understand city council."

Mad as Hell

12:15:33 - SPIKE - No comments

No Time For the Guv


Sweet is still wound up about Nixon. If Nixon had been a Democrat, Sweet would still be advocating sainthood for the martyred Milhous. The man knows who butters his bread.


12:15:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Iowa Population


I wonder how many illegal immigrants were counted in the latest census news that pushed Iowa past the three million population barrier. There are over 125,000 people of Mexican origin in Iowa and I wonder just how many of them are legal. What I hear is that Iowa has only 24,000 illegal Mexicans in the state taking jobs away from its citizens and lowering the wages of skilled labor. Hard to believe out of over 125,000 only 24,000 are illegal, must be fuzzy math as taught in our colleges here in Iowa. We have the college grads either working for the state at excessive wages or leaving and being replaced by those that attain a mandatory sixth grade education in Mexico, what a deal.

Vilsack promoted bringing illegal aliens to Iowa back when he was governor, saying Iowa needed the workers even though there weren’t enough jobs for legal Americans in Iowa.

The more I look at state government I see a mirror image of our local government here in Burlington along with the agenda of the Chamber of Commerce an organization that promotes illegal workers for Iowa and the country.


12:09:10 - SPIKE - No comments

23 December

New Illinois 2009 License Plate

Available now and just in time for Christmas

06:11:54 - SPIKE - No comments

When Will Mike Sweet Weigh In On Blagojevich


LJK is right. When is the Democratic Demogogue Mike Sweet going to take Blagojevich down? If this was George Bush, Sweet would have stroked out about now, pounding us with 3-4 columns a week of his rants and lunatic ravings about how the Republicans are the root of all evil.

In fact, where was Mike Sweet when Blagojevich started using the Illinois state airplane to fly back and forth from Chicago to Springfield everyday because his wife didn't want to live in Springfield?

If their ever was a crooked politician, it is Rod Blagojevich, a crooked Democrat. The criminal product of an extremely corrupt Democratic machine.

What I've noticed over the years is how the Democrats love to lie, cheat and steal while telling us what is good good for us. Just like the Democratic poster children Mike Sweet and Steve Delaney.

Equal Time

06:06:57 - SPIKE - No comments

Burlington Resident Right - Council Squanders With No Remorse


Burlington Resident forgot that all the council members are Democrats and when their lips move it’s a sure sign they're lying. The council is probably nowhere near settling the Manor deal; so we can probably lump in the old Dresser Rand building for a total of $6,000,000 council generated debt and then add on the Water Park and we have a total of $7.8 million of council generated debt created for the taxpayer.

Money squandered by a group of losers that will take years to recoup. I didn’t add in the Wreck Plex’s yearly losses but it’s a constant drain on the taxpayer and has been since it opened its doors.

We could then add on the railroad fiasco and the total is enough to make a taxpayer sick to his or her stomach. How could a group of elected officials make so many mistakes over and over again and never bat an eye or apologize to the taxpayer? What kind of a public servant would have the nerve to even be seen in public after what they’ve done to the citizens of Burlington?

Whatever happened to the tar and feather brigade? People that have no shame would probably walk around town forever regardless of the tar and feathers.

Hell, Slagle is still in town. Proving there is no shame or remorse by these losers for the taxpayer dollars they’ve squandered over the past ten years.


It's a genuine love fest at city hall. All slobbering over each other. It makes my skin crawl.

And when you have a genuine bunch of losers all patting each other on the back why wouldn't they pat Crooked Manager now Springsted Bond Salesman Consultant Bruce Slagle on the ass? Slagle is the poster boy of dumb ass business sense and stupid moves. He's the idol of incompetence.

Burlington is the only place in the world where people idolize alcoholic, incompetent, crooked, egotistical, sub-standard performance by its leaders.

Must be a Democratic County.


05:54:02 - SPIKE - No comments

22 December

Manor Property Update Overdue


Has anybody heard what is the situation with the Manor development? Last winter at a council meeting, Bill Ell said that there were a dozen or so interested developers and it would only be a few months setback because Muir pulled out.

The council should give a continuous update to let the public know what is going on. I assume nothing is happening. We are on the hook for $5 million dollars and you would think the Hawkeye would stay on this. This council probably doesn't want to talk about it.

I remember when council members said the Muir deal was solid and a done deal. Maybe they need to break it up into smaller parcels. The "Big" payments are due soon! This could be sitting empty for a long, long time.

I don't see good reason for a company to go into the old Dresser Rand building downtown either. Companies are going to more efficient and newer buildings. This old building is not efficient. Some said it could be a warehouse. This building does not have good accessibility to get trucks in and out. A warehouse needs good truck accessibility. It was never good there, but it is worse since Agency closed and the new bridge was built.

I'm glad Dresser Rand stayed here in Burlington, but we took a big old inefficient building off their hands. That isn't the local tax payers responsibility.

Burlington Resident

Lost Keys Ell's few months have turned into Mini-Me Worden's "few years." The only thing going on are the lies and deceit.

That's if we're lucky. Odds are that field will be 5 or more years before anyone wants to jump into the Burlington abyss of economic development fostered by losers.


03:15:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Obscuring Your View


""We only have to look into Illinois to see what's wrong with government when you're not very open and transparent," Sands said of the recently indicted Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich.

To aid in transparency, Sands said he will re-introduce a bill to allow citizens to track government spending and see how their lawmakers voted online."

You need not look quite so far to east. Illegal secret meetings, destroyed public records, squandered public monies, etc. aided and abetted by a compliant press are albeit only a mile closer to Des Moines. Burlington is proof enough.

What would happen to Rep. Sands bill if it made to the Iowa Senate? Would the Senate Majority Whip amend the hell out of it to suit himself and his cronies? Would the final bill finger citizens who online dare to criticize the Iowa Senate Majority Whip? It would be nothing new.

Until people wake up and stop re-electing the likes of Senator Courtney, nothing will change.

I wonder if Mike Sweet is going to unleash his powerful quill to blast the Illinois Governor? Or is Blagojevich one of his sacred cows? Maybe he's one of the unnamed conspirators.


03:13:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Another Iowa Rip-off


Iowa is again set to rip off the taxpayer because of the high salaries of government employees along with their grossly enriched benefits. An auto registration that would have cost $35 will go up to $112 after the first of the year. Massive increases in fees are nothing new to Iowans, a state that pioneered bureaucratic failure. Iowa government keeps its private sector working class in near poverty, and brags that most of its government employees are college graduates and deserve to be paid as though they lived in California or New York. Both of those states are now on the verge of reducing pay and benefits for their employees because of the same problems Iowa has created over the years.

Iowa needs to cut the pay and benefits for its government workers who are known to the rest of the country as the “Iowa Privileged Class”. We live in one of the lowest paying states in the country while our state government employees are grossly overpaid relative to the private sector.

The state should start cutting wages and benefit packages for its employees and then maybe the tax dollars would go further towards making ends meet.

Also, the DNR wants to raise everything relative to the great outdoors 34% which will make it cheaper for Iowans to hunt deer in Wisconsin rather than Iowa. The so called reason is because hunting and fishing has dropped in Iowa and the increase in licenses and fees will fix it all up. The cost is already too high and the DNR hasn’t a clue that raising licenses and fee cost will only drive off more hunters. The DNR has no concept of economics and what will happen when they raise the license and fees to hunt and fish. It would seems to me that the DNR should dump 34% of their bureaucrats, a more than justified method of reducing cost and increasing cash flow.

Iowa is just a nightmare of bureaucrats in a constant feeding frenzy.


03:10:00 - SPIKE - No comments

No Future Erasing the Past


"Steve Frevert, director of Downtown Partners Inc. and a member of the county's historical society, said the bridge built in the 1800s is historically significant and should be saved, if possible."

Burlington has no shortage of decay. Crumbling buildings, worn out infrastructure, etc. are what we are becoming known for. Corruption beyond rigor mortise describes local leadership. Grow Greater Burlington advocates accelerating our decay by the bus load.

It takes wealth to fund preservation. Preservation does not create wealth. It is a luxury of the wealthy. Wealth has been fleeing Burlington for decades.

As long as the game plan is to import unskilled labor for crap jobs that so far have not proven exportable, nothing will change. Short sighted, provincial princes and merchants unwilling to face the future guarantee gravity will keep pulling past glories to ground.


03:04:49 - SPIKE - No comments



I see the kids are putting the paper together. I refuse to buy the fish wrap.

And I'm beginning to regret reading it online.


Like the ad, too. Real community player.


03:04:00 - SPIKE - No comments



If Garry Thomas' stepson gets a deal from the DA by turning on his co-defendant this stinks all the way to city hall. Maybe if Mr.Thomas has 40 more days of prayer it will go away altogether.

Mr. Collins attorney says in the questioning of his client, he is not the sharpest individual. Mr. Hicks was the one found with the pellet gun inside his pants pocket. But beings Mr. Collins isn't the sharpest individual who has been charged with two counts of robbery lets just send him away.

And we can get Mr. Hicks a job working for the city. Who says having friends or parents on the city council doesn't pay.

No Justice
02:58:17 - SPIKE - No comments

Mrs Harkin Conoco Board Member


With Mrs. Harkin on the board of Conoco there is no need for the great polutictic senator Harkin to worry about $4.00 gas for the people of Iowa. I'm surprised Mr Sweet of the Advertizer has not made any comments about her being on the board of Conoco in his Kindergarden report card he puts in the advertizer. Politicians and their wives on high paying boards of directors. Is a pattern unfolding here? Or are we seeing the tip of the ice berg?

02:55:25 - SPIKE - No comments



What's the deal with your reporting? You shopping? Or the news you get doesn't agree?
Don't be like the advertizer and print what you want. It makes you look worse then them.
I like your web site, but you only print what you want. Are you worse than the advertizer?


You haven't been around here long enough to complain when we take a day or two off.


01:10:00 - SPIKE - No comments

19 December

The Muir Christmas Story - Unhappy Anniversary


"It is always a tragedy when people lose their homes or small businesses to eminent domain abuse. Property rights are indeed the foundation of all our rights—no matter how young or old, rich or poor we may be. Let the example of Burlington, Iowa be proof that no one's home is safe from the government's wrecking ball until eminent domain for private gain is a thing of the past."

The Ghost of former Crooked City Manager now Springsted Bond Consultant Bruce Slagle.

Have any plans been made to commemorate the approaching one year anniversary of Robert Muir making a wise business decision after our leaders unwise decision?


The only anniversary party will be Slagle and Lost Keys Ell drinking at the Sombrero like the fish they are.


15:35:50 - SPIKE - No comments

Cessfords Cut Back


The new owners eliminated 16-17 positions mostly managers and supervisors, including the plant manager yesterday.They also have eliminated portable asphalt plants going forward.

This comes a week after the company Christmas party where the plant manager said he expected good things next year.

So much for the Christmas spirit.


I guess it couldn't wait until January 1. Gotta get that closing cost write-off.


11:54:39 - SPIKE - No comments

18 December

How They Get Away With It For So Long


"The biggest problem you have now and reason for what is happening is
that the people in power have money and ability to silence the media
so it will never be reported and as long as you have that going on,
you will never stop it," Cooley said."

It has come out that that Illinois Governor and wannabe Union
Official, Rod Blagojevich, got his start as a bookie. As a dutiful
street taxpayer, if the price is right Rod made certain the mob got
their fair share.

The media knew. They said nothing. Where have we not read about
something similar in Burlington?


08:28:20 - SPIKE - No comments

17 December

Mum Advice


My parents always told me to stand back when waiting to board a train.
The noise and exposed moving parts of those old steam locomotives
helped scare some sense into a youngster. Even with a less
intimidating locomotive, whatever happened to common sense?

I see the lady who lost a foot to Amtrak is saying nothing. It makes
me wonder if some lawyer chased the ambulance. This could get

The City of Burlington owns the depot. BSNF reportedly, consider the
, owns the platform. Amtrak owned the train. Common sense is not
worth two cents in a court of law anymore. Who is to "blame?"

If this ends up in the legal system, who would end up defending our
City? Nobody would blame them for refusing, but I would put my money
in with BNSF. They have a proven track record.

In the interest of justice being served, could you recommend a local
lawyer with railroad experience for the plaintiff?


One that could win or the scourge of over-billing and crooked doing?


03:17:33 - SPIKE - No comments

Democrats Need To Go Figure


The Democrats reportedly pay about $5.6 million per year (with taxpayer "Free Money") the bill for Nancy Pelosi's jet for her to ride home to California.

Yet she wants to tell us how bad the Big 3 are for going to Washington in their jets.

Tell me who is getting taken for a ride?


We all are.


03:16:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Mr. Sandell


Mr. Sandell is right, that it’s the council that should be held responsible but here in Burlington the council has no decision making skills; so they just went along with whatever Mr. Slagle threw before them. This form of decision making left the citizens without any representation and thus everything that could go wrong did go wrong.

I remember even the council seemed surprised that Mr. Slagle was letting city employees off on Fridays and it only became known because someone went down to city hall on a Friday and no one was around. Now why wouldn’t the council know employees were being excused from work on Fridays, and of course they were paid. Mr. Slagle ran the town as he saw fit and led the sheepish city council into thoughtless, costly and disastrous decisions. For ten years Slagle ran the town and the council did nothing but pay homage to him for making all their decisions which we now know were all failures.

Over the past decade Burlington voters have never voted for the person best for the job because they still think they owe devotion to past Case employees. You’d think by now they’d have learned a lesson about voting but the trend seems to continue every time there’s a vote.

The school board has the same arrogance as the council which doesn’t help; so here in Burlington we just have losers in important political and hired positions and until the voters wise up nothing with change and it’ll be business as usual in this fading town.


03:15:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Grow Greater Morning Sun?


Is it true that Jason Hutcheson, Dennis Hinkle's hand picked replacement for Executive Director of Grow Greater Burlington lives in Morning Sun?

How can that be?




03:14:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Get a Job


Hoschek's 2008 Committee Assignments

Mid-America Port Commission - Commissioner
National Association of Counties (NACO/Transportation)
Des Moines County Emergency Management Commission
Department of Corrections - 8th Judicial District - Vice-Chairman
ISAC/County Case Management Services Board of Directors - Vice President
Des Moines County Case Management Advisory Board
South Iowa Crime Commission
South Iowa Area Juvenile Detention Agency
Regional Workforce Investment Board/Chief Elected Officials Board -
Region 16 - Chairman
Des Moines County Joint Safety Committee
Caring CommUnity Des Moines/Louisa County Empowerment Board
Emergency Food & Shelter Board of Des Moines County
Home Caring Services Board of Directors
Great River Gateway Committee
Southeast Iowa Regional Planning Commission - Alternate
Grow Greater Burlington, Inc./Chamber of Commerce - Alternate
Des Moines County Solid Waste Commission - Second Alternate"

Unemployment looms for the above resume holder. Just look at all those
qualifications. Will he be forced to ride the low wage express to
Columbus Junction, or will Grow Greater Burlington find something
paying better?

With 18 mouths to feed, what difference one more. If the municipal
bond market goes to hell and an infamous local bond salesman is shown
to the door, make it an even score. There is no problem meeting
payroll, just tell local government you have found people too good to

Grow Greater Burlington; a private/public partnership bringing
together the worst of both worlds.


Did you notice that all of these committees require driving someplace? I'll bet Hoschek ran out of mileage money in July.

Hoschek already knows all of this "experience" doesn't mean squat in the real world.


03:12:36 - SPIKE - No comments

Profitable Information Delivery in a Depressed, Crime Ridden Market


"The East Valley Tribune, a daily in suburban Phoenix owned by Freedom
Communications Inc., is reducing the number of publication days of its
print edition while posting news on its Web site daily. The Daily
Tribune in Royal Oak, a Detroit suburb, recently cut its print edition
to four days a week from six

Detroit has long been economically depressed and known for high crime.
Burlington was just economically depressed, but Grow Greater
Burlington is importing crime. Burlington is thus mirroring more and
more Detroit.

Detroit has a head start and begs comparison in other areas. Detroit
area newspapers are declining and desperate. This has involved
partnerships between publications and a realization that it is digital
delivery, or death.

Do you think a joint weekly print and daily digital offering by the
Des Moines County News and the Shopppers Spree maybe possible? It
would be a merger of the best our community has to offer in terms of
news and advertising information.

If Grow Greater Burlington keeps importing more "needed workers" who
find it difficult to translate writing into reading, is there any


03:08:21 - SPIKE - No comments

16 December

In Burlington, We Ignore Our Own


Grow Greater Burlington and the Southeast Regional Planning Commission are not serving those they claim to. They ignore their own.

Look at the statistics they like to to tout. The great majority already here have a high school diploma. By and large, we are literate in English and can comprehend elemental Mathematics. Our education system has sent many to obtain higher degrees

Rather than reap what our resources have sown, we witness departure. Under employment and low wages broadcast our hybrid seeds to the wind. Those remaining who are challenged to count change from a dollar are in charge of our tax dollars.

Examine their solutions to the problem. To be specific, look at what they are passing off as "growth."

A packing plant 50 miles away has jobs. These jobs require minimal mental skills. Now that illegal and English unable "undocumented immigrants" immigration enforcement is chasing away, offer up Burlington as the place for their domestic replacements of arguably lower moral standards to stay. Use our tax dollars to subsidize their daily ride to unskilled, low paying jobs.

Like the Pentagon's Harvard Business School Napoleons running the Vietnam War, count the bodies. The Grow Greater Burlington Bunch will claim those numbers spell victory. Ignore numbers that refute your strategy.

If you want to quote statistics, count the crime. Look at what is being done to local education systems. Quote quality out of one side of your mouth and destroy it in blind pursuit of a cynical trick to up 2010 census numbers.

We are being destroyed by the enemy within. If you want it to stop, demand that your tax dollars stop being given to those responsible.

Whizzed on by Whiz Kids

I only take great umbrage on calling Tapp and Hinkle "Whiz Kids." They are incompetent jackasses. The only whiz these two are capable of is found after a day of golf.

It sure as hell isn't anything constructive.


07:13:39 - SPIKE - No comments

Let's get a few things straight


Let's get a few things straight.

The City Manager did not put the City into extreme debt -- the City Council did.

The City Manager did not make the final decision about the Manor Mall -- the City Council did.

The City Manager did not keep us in the Water Park agreement -- the City Council did.

Upcoming generations' prospects in Burlington rest at least partially with that same City Council.

If the voters don't like what is happening with city government then they should encourage and promote candidates who will do the job the voters want done. We have a representative form of government. Hire good representatives and don't settle for voter apathy. Participate in your own future and that of your children.

Representing the citizens is a difficult job. Representing citizens who only complain about things is more difficult. Representing citizens who do not participate in encouraging smart solutions is impossible.

John Sandell

Your points are ultimately true.

But city manager Mini-Me Doug Worden knows where all the bodies are buried. He was taught well by our departed Crooked Bond Salesman Springsted Consultant Bruce Slagle said, "I only have to control 3 of them."

They key is to unload these losers and strike a slate.


07:06:42 - SPIKE - No comments

Looking for a Job


Looking for a Job had it right and the only outcome from the Tyson deal is Burlington has all the problems associated with it. The slum landlords in Burlington are probably happy to rent out their dilapidated houses and apartments at above average rents, if you call that a positive.

I also heard through the grape vine that there’s a limit to the number minorities that can be reported to the public for misdeeds at the high school. I don’t know if it’s true but it wouldn’t surprise me in the least that the school system is covering up problems they have with the students at the high school. Our school board is a mirror image of the city council when it comes to honesty and sunshine.


07:00:39 - SPIKE - No comments

Streets Dept. Priorities? - They Have None!


I was taking my wife to work downtown Monday morning, and I noticed a City of Burlington snow plow clearing off the empty lot just north of the port... I'm not one to usually complain, but they haven't even touched my subdivision, and they are clearing an empty lot???

So I decided to call the Streets Dept. and nicely ask if I could get a plow in my area to at least spread some salt/sand mix. The receptionist politely put me back to the supervisor whom the mention every time in the paper these days, and I got his "voice mail". I left my name and number, and what I wanted done, and I have yet to see a plow or hear back from him.

I pay PREMIUM taxes in a good subdivision, and they are clearing an empty lot first. I wonder, what is the city's liability if an accident occurs and there hasn't been any attempt made to do anything in my area? And yet, the empty lot gets cleared.

I guess I should just shut up and let it go, but I bet they cleared a path in front of Slagle's house...right to the empty lot on Roosevelt so he can sit and watch it rot.


I'll bet they were plowing on the West end of Lucas Street, too.


06:59:21 - SPIKE - No comments

A Reason to Visit Burlington and Leave


We were thinking of traveling over the holidays. Thanks to Burlington's Chamber of Incompetents, we are not. The family is coming back to Burlington.

This is not because of anything wonderful about Burlington. It is because we are afraid to leave for fear we will return to find our house has been robbed, or burned to the ground. This is what we are supposed to tolerate as "economic development?"

We are tired of being taxed to hell and back to finance the Chamber and its assorted tentacles. We are tired of our taxes being used to turn what was simply a depressed area into a living hell. Our kids got college degrees and got out. They were smart. We don't need this crap.

Our children live not that far from each other, but not close to here. We plan to spend our remaining time close to our children and grandchildren. That used to be possible in Burlington, but not any longer.


06:57:13 - SPIKE - No comments

The Big Oil Big Iowa Liberal Connection

Liberal Elitism At Its Best


You gotta wonder how some crooks get away with it. Then, you look at election results in Des Moines County and realized there is nothing to it.


What was Harkin's wife doing on a Conoco corporate jet? Conoco paid for a Senator's wife to attend a meeting that had nothing to do with their core business?

What's going on here?


06:55:56 - SPIKE - No comments

Ball Park Lights


Maybe we can light up the new doggie park. We are building most of it anyway.
The little league was going to get the job done with volunteers.
I guess the dog park will get it done also with the city worker that the council will volunteer.

Ready to end it all and move far far away.

06:52:58 - SPIKE - No comments

15 December

Burlington Status Report


I don't usually agree with Paul Roxlau, but in Tuesday's paper he hit the nail right on the head. The Manor Project has probably now run over $6 million dollars with the interest we are paying and the taxes from the properties we are not getting.

John Mercer seems to get a little huffed up when anyone asks him about anything to do with the Manor Project.

Bruce Slagle, in the ten years he was city manager, had put the city in so much debt, I doubt if our grandkids will be able to pay it off.

Doug Worden decided to stay with Randy Winegard another year in the water park; which, is a losing proposition. Next year, Randy Winegard will come back and tell us that we are in a recession, that is why there is no profits.

The future for Burlington does not look very good for upcoming generations. The job situation in Burlington is at a stand still, and Dennis Hinkle should be replaced with someone that can bring jobs to Burlington, not Columbus Junction.

I wonder if Doug Worden bought the seat of city manager from Bill Ell? Just a thought. What happened to the "good old days" when we just had a mayor?


Looking for a job

Brain Tapp from Regional Planning will bus you to Columbus Junction to work in the slaughterhouse. Then you can come home to find your house burglarized or burnt down.

How much better can it get? Hell. I'd move here for that deal.


02:46:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Crime Stats


Well, it really appears the Burlington police leadership is here for the purpose of protecting our current and past officials from being accountable for their drunken driving affairs and other illegal activities.

Unless the police reports are tainted we can surly find out about the crime statistics from the year end FBI reports.

Chicago and Illinois itself have nothing on the way business is carried out here in Burlington, Iowa. We have the same "if their lips are moving, they're lying" public officials as our neighbors across the river. There’s so much dishonesty in Burlington’s elected officials that our local government just reeks of misdeeds and cover-ups; so why wouldn’t they lie about the crime wave, after all it was the public officials themselves that opened the city doors to the criminal element under the guise of Burlington needed the workers.

It wasn’t Burlington that needed the workers because there aren’t any employment opportunities in Burlington. It was for Columbus Junction that Burlington opened the doors to our city for all the wrong reasons, with the exception of greed. Our hats off to Muscatine, a city that understood the repercussions of bringing in workers for Tyson and turned down the deal that Burlington saw as opportunity; so we in Burlington are, as usual stuck with another mess created by SEIRPC, Chamber of Commerce and local officials. Burlington officials wouldn’t know opportunity if it were given to them.

If they continue to cover up the simple, “What happened to the Manor lights question”, what other facts, figures and real information are they hiding from the public?

The question on most people’s minds is when is Burlington going to go belly-up and when should they leave for greener pastures? Sooner is much more likely than later, in my opinion.

How could so few people make so many poor and disastrous decisions time and time again? Our officials have over a period of time ruined our city by failing to live up to the standards of honest government. One only has to look in the vicinities of Fourth, Third and Front Streets to find the multiple epicenters of our crime wave.


Where are the Manor ballpark lights? If we have them and don't need them, why keep them? Sell them to someone that needs them.


02:35:00 - SPIKE - No comments

They Already Have Golf Club Covers


Have you done your gift shopping for that special group of friends at City Hall and Grow Greater Burlington. What do you buy those who know everything? For only 30.00EUR, you may let them share the wisdom of the grand master of centralized economic development.

You better act fast. With no direct air service from the shipping location, nor to Burlington, have that credit card handy and order today. Unlike a buyer for the Manor Mall, December 25th will be here soon.

Merry Kimas

01:44:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Toot, Toot, Burlington, Good-bye


Pressure is building for passenger rail service to the north. Do you re-route through three statistical metropolitan areas between Chicago and Omaha, or keep running the Cannonball to Hootervilles? Public, not private, enterprise has been running passenger trains since 1971.

The track is already in place. It needs updating. The politicians, and they are more numerous to the north, are talking about putting up the money. This will not happen next week, but fog inside the gold dome over the Northwest horizon maybe condensing.

Nostalgia ain't gonna cut it. Toot, toot, Burlington, don't cry.


01:42:00 - SPIKE - No comments

14 December

A Good Place To Start


Time and time again Burlington's Police Chief has stated there isn't a rise in crime in Burlington. He's so out of touch with reality he still believes there's no problem after a night of 4 arson cases.

Mr. Big Shot Murray wants to play Big Man in this "let's have a public forum but let's limit the public input to 10 minutes" crime reduction plan. It would seem to me if he really wants to make things better the common sense place to start is to tell the clueless Police Chief "you need to change your attitude or we'll have your badge."

It has to work better than 40 days of prayer did.

Smart Enough To Leave

06:56:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Burlington Crime Rate Blows Steady


So the Police Chief claims that the crime rate in Burlington is “steady?”

I think not. Take one look at the almost daily occurrence of thefts of vehicles and almost weekly occurrence of bold-faced hold-ups at stores and residential properties. Can the chief say with a straight face that this is “steady” rate of occurrence from 4 or 5 years ago?

Give me a break. We have a big problem with what Tyson and the city dumped onto our collective laps as a community, and it will be some time before it will be corrected. By that time, many of the law-abiding, productive citizens will have left this area (me included) for a new city to call home where your car and property are safe, schools actually teach, and have roads that can driven on without worrying about breaking a rim or a strut.


What a joke.


06:54:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Crime Is Steady


Why does the police chief keep saying crime is steady. I saw all his reports .
I for one believe the crime is getting much more violent.
Low or no employment brings crime .
Crime brings drugs and thugs.
We have laws, lets use them to the full extent of the law.

One suggestion would be to hire more judges and county attorneys to handle the legal end. It will be cheaper and safer to pay them than put people in harm's way.

If people and business see we mean what we say they may come to Burlington. If not at least we may be safer in the long run.
All I saw at the crime forum was everyone thought we have a major problem except the police chief.


06:52:00 - SPIKE - No comments

13 December

Hang 'Em High


"Councilman Garry Thomas said the city's demographics have changed in recent years. He said an influx of newcomers from places like Chicago have created new challenges for law enforcement."

Speaking of creating challenges for law enforcement, were Hinkle and Tapp present?


Hinkle and Tapp were home hiding in the basement with shades drawn, peeking out from under the bed.


10:42:06 - SPIKE - No comments

West Burlington


It appears that West Burlington is hurting for cash and a good way to get some would be to inspect all the rentals in town for a healthy fee. West Burlington needs to rid itself of its dictatorship form of government. West Burlington citizens are as slug-tolerant as Burlington’s for putting up with lousy government.


10:39:26 - SPIKE - No comments

Dying With a Whimper


The old media is literally shrinking. It is drying up. With their last gasp, an obituary nobody will read on paper.


10:37:45 - SPIKE - No comments

Opposite Ends of a Circle


"Prosecutors alleged Blagojevich sought appointment as secretary of Health and Human Services or wanted an ambassadorship in the new Obama administration, or to be placed in a lucrative union-affiliated job in exchange for appointing Valerie Jarrett, a close friend and adviser to the president-elect to the Senate seat."

I'm tired of all these people claiming Des Moines County is just like Cook County. Examine the facts.

In Cook County, crooked politicans aspire to be union leaders. In Des Moines County, it is the exact opposite.

J. Hoffa (In absentia)

Jimmy, we heard you were living in Hoschek's cabin. Is that true?


10:36:36 - SPIKE - No comments

11 December

West Burlington Out Of Control


Why would West Burlington want to add rental laws and inspections to the city books when they can't seem to enforce the smoking laws at Otis Campbells? Talk about ridiculous.

We stopped eating at Aunt Bea's and so have a bunch of our friends. We couldn't break the law like that and not be punished. Why should they get to?

And we aren't going back either after their fight is over.

Fed Up with Little Hitler Trousil

02:09:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Not to Run So a Crook May Not Cut and Run


""We thought we'd never have the opportunity to install the bug or place the telephone tap and we made an urgent request for the Tribune not to publish that story," Fitzgerald said. "That is a very rare thing for us to do and it's an even rarer thing for a newspaper to grant."

Not that it will ever happen here, but if the Iowa Attorney General's Office were investigating any of our local elected, would you honor a similar request? Do you foresee anything like this being an issue for the Advertiser?


Complicity. Publisher Steve Delaney will never grant the request; self incrimination.

The real difference is the Tribune didn't want to be part of the Chicago Machine. Publisher Steve Delaney wants to be part of the local gang of political crooks.


02:04:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Top Ten Worst Insurance Companies


Here's the list of the worst insurance companies in America provided by The American Association of Justice. Listed in order starting with the worst:

1. Allstate
2. Unum
3. AIG
4. State Farm
5. Conseco
6. WellPoint
7. Farmers
8. United Health
9. Torchmark
10. Liberty Mutual

Here's a sample of what they had to say about State Farm: As the biggest property casualty insurance company in America, State Farm has become notorious for it's deny and delay tactics. In many cases, the company has gone to extreme lengths to avoid paying claims, including forging signatures on earthquake waivers after the deadly Northridge earthquake, and altering engineering reports regarding damage after Hurricane Katrina.

Your readers can go to: Ten Worst Insurance Companies in America to read more.


AIG? Isn't that one of the Wall Street Bailouts? Why would they ever need a bailout if they aren't paying claims? We can't


01:55:00 - SPIKE - No comments

10 December

Better a Vacant Lot Than a Bridge


"I don't hear any public outcry about it being closed," Mayor Bill Ell said. "I'm not sure what we should do at this time. With all the stuff we have coming down the road, it scares me to borrow for this."

Did you hear any public outcry to chase Manor residents out of their homes and turn their property into a $5 million plus vacant lot? We did what only the chosen few wanted.

Yes, Mr. Mayor, we have a lot of stuff coming down the road. Our leaders have been too busy chasing pie in the sky. Examine the without merit legal settlements and commercial real estate development for dummies. These projects were more important than tending to basic infrastructure like sewers and bridges. They have drained the bank.

Bankrupt leadership has Burlington facing bankruptcy to accomplish those responsibilities for which government was formed. It is not only City leaders. State Senator Courtney and the local single party political system have been in on this as well.

"City Manager Doug Worden said the city's tax levy could increase 35 or 40 cents if general obligation bonds are issued to pay for the estimated $4 million price tag to replace the bridge on South Main Street."

That's right. Just raise taxes. Never keep growing an interest earning capital projects fund and keep your fingers out of it for anything else. Any fool can see how old this town's infrastructure is. A 112 year old bridge needing replacement is not the result of a meteor strike.

Spend all that you've got and more than you've got. Kiss babies and tell their parents about that wrecked plex you built. When those babies grow up, they will make a decision about their future. Paying ungodly taxes for stopped up sewers, crumbling streets, etc. while working two minimum wage jobs makes that choice easy.

As long as we keep electing and re-electing idiots, things will never turn around.


Gas Bag Lost Keys Bill Ell is getting to look more like Gas Bag Heland's Father everyday. Lost Keys doesn't know what to do. What a shock. He never did!

Where was Lost Keys when the Manor residents were being evicted? He had his nose stuck up Crookedest City Manager - Springsted Consultant Bruce Slagle 's ass. We'll be years paying off Slagle's disastrous land deal.

Cascade Bridge doesn't affect Lost Keys. He goes to the bar, not Crapo Park. And he doesn't drive over Cascade Bridge to get to the bar. To have to listen to his drivel is far beyond my patience level.

Mini-Me Worden doesn't have any tangible skill set. He could learn from the spend crazy school board and at least use the excuse, "The cost of construction will rise so dramatically in this recession that we have to tax all you dummies now."

We have nothing but losers running in and out of city hall. And most of the monument builders on the school board, too.


07:30:48 - SPIKE - No comments

The System That Produced a President-Elect


What the hell took them so long in Illinois? It would have been nice to know about these folks six months ago. Selling Obama's vacant Senate seat is simply the latest stunt.

No mention of the Obama land deal yet.

Joliet prison is becoming Illinois' Old Governor's Home. Before this is over, is there a chance of arrests being made in Washington as well?

When will anybody look into our local Cook County wannabes?

Paul Powell


The sap from this tree has just started to hit the windshield. I believe we more than casually mentioned Rezko's name and the Obama connection. Nobody listened.

Mancow said this morning the tentacles are gripping Dirty Dick Durbin, Jesse Jackson Jr. and Obama.

Yesterday, we bought paper shredder futures. All these crooks and a whole lot more have burned up thousands of shredders in the last 24 hours. It's the new Christmas gift for your favorite Democratic politician.


07:00:31 - SPIKE - No comments

The Matter of Criminal Character


"Told by two other advisers he has to "suck it up" for two years, the FBI says it heard Blagojevich complain he has to give this "BLEEPER [the president-elect] his senator. BLEEP him. For nothing? BLEEP him."

An interesting comment from a fellow Illinois Democrat on the character of the president-elect. Would you care to venture the going rate on a bribe to widen US 34 from Monmouth to Burlington? Would it be less than the asking rate for a U. S. Senator?

Stuck in Traffic

We can't afford it.

06:45:00 - SPIKE - No comments

09 December

Bull Horn Economics


When the Advertiser goes broke, will Jesse Jackson come to Burlington. Will Jesse pull out his bull horn on South Main and cry "shame?" Will Jesse please take some of his old friends home with him when he gets on the train.


I'd rather he took Brian Tapp and Dennis Hinkle with him.


03:05:39 - SPIKE - No comments

Space Video


I got this link to a nice video collection of NASA photos. Your readers might like to watch it. There ar some great shots at the end of the space station and shuttle.


03:01:58 - SPIKE - No comments

Mid - Channel


You know, as I was reading this article, I didn't stop to think that it was not quoted correctly as to where the accident happened. I was more worried about my friends, and the loss of someone close to them! Shame on you all for being worried about such a trivial thing like that when this was a horrible accident, that resulted in the loss of a life.


One thing used to be sacrosanct at any newspaper, the obituaries. Many times the only record of a person's life is their obituary. When their passing is sudden and abrupt, all the more reason for the facts to be right in an accompanying story.

Somewhere down the road, an unknown relative or friend may want to know about this. Our so-called newspaper has the obligation to get these blatant details correct.

This is a new world. There are eyes out there everywhere, watching and correcting. Facts do matter.

We're sorry for your friends' loss.


02:58:52 - SPIKE - No comments

Bail Out The Biased?


Everybody is running around with their hand out. Banks, insurance companies, auto makers, who is next?

The auto makers will get help. The U. A. W. helps keep politicians in power who believe one person working can support two who retired at age 50. If not, we will all pay the tab.

When does the bail out come for the old main stream media? By their own admission, 90% of the newsroom is liberal. They pulled out all the stops to make Obama President. Why should the liberal press get any less than than the unions?

Will the federal government bail out the Advertiser? If not, will Heland raise our taxes to help his friends should they need?


01:31:00 - SPIKE - No comments

08 December

Lance Buys Archway Cookies

According to reliable sources, business is booming at Lance Private Brands/Vista Bakery. Lance Corporation bought Archway Cookies in Ohio but not the headquarters in Michigan. The deal was announced on December 1 and announced to its employees on December 3.

Unfortunately, we were a little late reporting the story. But since the Ad Vertiser's business guy was reporting on a farm forum held November 20 while we have had family hour stories of his life, I guess we are still ahead of the curve.


09:50:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Republican Embarrassment Kim Lehman Censured

The Iowa Republican censored Lehman Saturday at their state central committee meeting. Republican embarrassment Kim Lehman was censured for her role in jamming right to life issues down everyone’s throat using her political position to do it.

Unfortunately, they couldn’t send her ass packing back to the front porch.

Attendees say they saw no local party members in Des Moines. The local enforcers of Christian beliefs must have had the Saturday Fight Night Cage to clean out.

No wonder these local Democratic losers hold office.


09:45:00 - SPIKE - No comments

The Miracle of the Market


"McClatchy, the nation's third-largest newspaper chain, has approached potential buyers for The Herald, said these people. But they said they knew of no serious offers for the paper, reflecting the evaporation of major investors' interest in buying newspapers."

When the stock market crashed in 1929, traders waving arm loads of what had been blue chips could find no buyers. The party was over. It was time for a reality check.

Do you think there is a real chance of the Advertiser as it now exists going away?


One of these days the Sunday paper will look like Monday's; paper thin and news thin.


09:31:43 - SPIKE - No comments

Burlington Is On The Leading Edge


I read the post from the Denver Post, "....possibly leaving some cities with no daily newspaper."" Hell, that's been true in Burlington for some time. We have a daily advertiser pretending it is still a daily newspaper.

At least the weekly publications are honest. The Des Moines County News is a newspaper. The Shoppers Spree makes no pretense about being anything but an advertiser. The dishonest have a way of going away. Sometimes, it takes a nudge from Spike and Falcon.

Senator King, the drunk ex-mayor, Slagle etc. are no more. If the Advertiser joins them, it will not be missed.


09:29:03 - SPIKE - No comments

Advertiser Mid-Channel


"Iowa State Patrol officials said the accident happened at Eighth Street and DMC 99, approximately 1/2 mile east of U.S. 34."

Wouldn't 1/2 mile east of where Highway 99 goes under US 34 be about the middle of the Mississippi River?


Swimmin' with the fish. How would these people understand directions? This guy is their crime writer. Writers write fiction. Reporters report news. Most of what they write is fiction. So no harm.


09:27:33 - SPIKE - No comments

06 December

School Awards


I see where U.S. News and World Report came out with their Best High School 2009 list and the only Des Moines County government school to make the list was West Burlington who got a bronze award. No mention of any Burlington government schools.

Good job West Burlington!

Burlington Resident

02:11:45 - SPIKE - No comments

Empty Your Coin Jar and Own a Newspaper


- from the Denver Post

"Next year could be worse. In a report this week, corporate-ratings agency Fitch predicted that some newspapers and newspaper groups are likely to default on their debt in 2009 — possibly leaving some cities with no daily newspaper."

Daily newspapers are being dumped by their owners. People are going to new technology. When will the Advertiser be offered on E-Bay? Will it sell there for less than a complete collection of Cabbage Patch dolls?


02:09:59 - SPIKE - No comments

05 December

What's Next for Republicans?

Republicans Call for Lunatic Committeewoman's Resignation


Republican committees and officials from Linn, Johnson, Muscatine, Wapello, Jefferson, Washington, Cedar, Henry, Jones and Louisa Counties have joined together over the past several weeks to call for the resignation of the state Republican National Committeewoman, Kim Lehman.

Kim Lehman is nothing but a self-serving troublemaker. She used her position as head of the Iowa Right to Life Committee to further their agenda in the Republican Party.

Why weren't the Des Moines County Cult Republicans in on the call for her ouster?


They were too busy rolling around on the floor fighting at their own fund raiser after singing Koombaja and Michael Row The Boat Ashore.

The religious zealots that have a strangle hold on the Republican Party need a cannon shot out the side door of politics. People like Kim Lehman are no good. They serve no value. Especially in politics.

If they want do something, go to church.


Lehman's Cannon Shot

07:58:03 - SPIKE - No comments

Republican Fight Club


Smart Republicans want Lehman removed from her position. Why can't our local Republicans see the light?


Like a roped dog, you won’t see any action by the Des Moines County Republicans. Unless, of course, you go to their meetings when they fight and physically assault one another.

Large Mouth Heland must be jigglin', chuckling like Jingles the Clown, a bowl full of jelly.


07:50:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Dresser Rand


Didn’t Burlington purchase the old Dresser Rand building downtown for $1,000,000?


Oh, yeah. It was the loss leader to get the deal done. It would have been better to give them a $1 million dollars than be saddled with that albatross. Clean up will cost more than a $1 million.


07:33:51 - SPIKE - No comments

Chicago Billboard


It wouldn’t surprise me one bit that local entities have billboards on the south side of Chicago advertising how great life is in Burlington; so grab the kids and come on over; we’ll even providing housing and bus service to get you back and forth to work for $1.00 a day.

Of course the work is in another county and Burlington is the sucker city that accepted the Tyson plan while Muscatine understood the end results and declined the wonderful offer.

The big winner in the whole deal is Tyson and the overall loser is, as suspected “BURLINGTON,” a city with no intelligent persons sitting on the city council and a cluster of greedy “DO-GOODER” organizations known for their constant failures year in and year out that apparently exist for the purpose of supporting high wages for their management with a no value added return to the taxpayer.


Don't forget word-of-mouth. It is always better than Ad Vertising.


07:28:52 - SPIKE - No comments

Compounding Disaster


The City of Cedar Rapids wants to raise the sales tax. No need for the consent of the taxed as required by the Code of Iowa. We got flooded. Force Majeure!

Damn, that City Council is a hell of lot smarter than ours. Burlington's taxaholics are so mundane. No matter.

We got flooded too. Monkeys see. Monkeys do?


07:26:52 - SPIKE - No comments

Rocky Mountain News for Sale

The paper, founded in 1859, is Colorado’s oldest, as well as the state’s oldest continuously operated business. Since 2000, the Rocky has won four Pulitzer Prizes for journalistic excellence.

Scripps said that financial conditions had worsened in Denver to the point where it was not receiving enough money to cover its editorial costs.

07:15:00 - SPIKE - No comments

04 December

Wall Street Whores

When these assholes in Congress make the Big 3 grovel at there feet after kissing the asses of Wall Street, it makes me want to puke. Dodd’s face looked like a Hershey Kiss. Wall Street wealth across all categories was made on the breadth and resiliency of the automakers.

Maybe they need a new business plan. But there isn’t any Congressman or Senator’s ass in Washington that should be kissed to get a bridge loan.

Every Congressman lost that right when they became Wall Street’s whore.


13:13:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Punish the Guilty and Enforce the Law


"Councilman Garry Thomas, who attended both meetings, said the next week's forum is not meant to be a venue solely to air grievances. Rather, he said, the meeting is about finding solutions."

In seeking a solution, start by punishing the guilty:

Fire Hinkle.

Fire Tapp.

Clean house at "Grow" Greater Burlington.

After the guilty are gone, help the victims:

Stop encouraging those with no job skills to keep coming here. Burlington is not the Garden Eden. Check Burlington's census figures for recent decades if in doubt.

Give those offered false hope another bus ride back from whence they came.

Recent arrivals are not the sole cause of the problem. A lax attitude toward law enforcement has helped make Burlington resemble the aftermath of an overdose of laxative. Enforce the law. Just enforcing the law alone is the answer.

All must be equal under the law. That includes office holders and their administrators.


Why is Thomas so outspoken? I thought Little Lord Fauntleroy aka Vice Admiral Murray was doing the decidin' 'bout who could speak and who couldn't. Didn't Garry get the agenda?

When the first whine is muttered, the meeting should end because everone hates whiners. They want solutions.


13:11:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Another One Rode the Bus?


A woman from Chicago comes to Burlington looking for a job. Finding none, surprise, surprise, she turns to crime. Did Grow Greater Burlington, aided and abetted by the Southeast Iowa Regional Planning Commission, entice her to Burlington?

Taxpayers local and Iowa wide must now pay to see this woman stays here at least 90 days. What a brilliant way to bring more people to Burlington and guarantee they stay.

Give Hinkle and his henchmen credit, they read rule #6 of that magazine article on drawing retailing to your town, "Stop thinking so much about sales tax dollars," says retail developer James Kaplan. "And think about ways and reasons to get people into town."

All those people our taxes are enticing to Burlington may yet lead to an occupied Manor Mall. Studying the market so generated, the Manor Mall could host pawn shops, bail bondsmen and no money down used car lots.

Local leadership around here impressed my kids to move elsewhere for a future. If this keeps up, I may well follow them.


13:10:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Today Des Moines - When Burlington?


I hear artillery over the horizon. How long until the allies arrive? Are small town dailies in Argentina hiring? Gotta pack.

Lord Ha Ha

Lord Ha Ha Publisher Steve Delaney is probably working on his Ha Ha speech. But keep in mind, the Ad Vertiser pays cartoon wages so it repels real action.


13:08:49 - SPIKE - No comments

Government Money for Dresser-Rand


Does the $50,000 that Dresser-Rand received from the State/County for whatever purpose have anything to do with the fact Jeff Heland's wife works for the company? This smells of corruption and political graft.

How did Heland vote on this or who's donut did he give up to get this money? Of course Heland is such an honest business that no one would question an insurance salesman of doing wrong.

Graft No-More

Large Mouth Heland had no influence on the Dresser Rand deal. Neither did any other local gas bag politician. This was done by the Governor and Dresser Rand. The local fluff was along for the ride and to keep their mouths shut.

And it sure as hell wasn't that Thief of the County, Springsted, Inc. 's bond counselor Bruce Slagle.


12:57:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Everyday a Holiday


"The Perry County Commission voted 4 to 1 to observe the second Monday in November as "The Barack Obama Day." County offices will close and its roughly 40 workers will get a paid holiday."

The State of Iowa is going broke. The last session of the legislature increased spending roughly 20%. Loath to accept responsibility, look for legislative leaders to dump more back on the cities and counties. Just remember Iowa Highway 99.

Des Moines County is not exactly a fat piggy bank. The City of Burlington has a Manor Mall to make good on and a few other failures as well. How will local government employees get a pay raise?

If not a pay raise, how about another day off with pay? Senator Courtney's birthday sounds like a good enough excuse.

Tired of Paying for It

12:52:00 - SPIKE - No comments

03 December

Wanna Buy a Vacant Lot?


Looking over the ten points on how to attract retailers I would venture to say the Burlington dimwits missed on all ten of them. Greed was the only reason for their display of ignorance and the, “stop thinking so much about sales tax dollars,” hit the nail on the head.

I find it appalling that Slagle is still living in Burlington and hob-knobbing around with current officials as though nothing was wrong. It just goes to show that these people have neither conscience nor shame for the lives they uprooted when they threw them out of their homes.

Then to add insult to injury they throw a big bash for the loser Slagle as though he were a winner or something to that affect. He ripped off this town like no other before him, unless you throw in the guy that ran the airport into the ground. He was another person the council raved about and kept giving raises. What is it that makes Burlington voters elect brain dead public servants, people that have done more to destroy Burlington in ten years than anyone over the past 160 years?

Another question is why does Burlington voters continue to elect “no-hopers” to every public office available? Just what is the mentality of the Burlington voter that makes them incapable of making sound judgment in the voting booth? Is it the union mentality here in Burlington that tells them who or what party to vote for rather than for the best qualified person for the job? If that’s the case there isn’t much hope for Burlington to overcome this “dimwit” voting cycle.

Even having separate laws for those in public service doesn’t seem to bother the Burlington voter, laws that ticket the average citizen for drunk driving and let the office holder go his merry way. Just who makes these poor decisions to let law breakers go for major infractions, is it the city manager or the police chief? One of them or both should be fired for breaking the public trust; we don’t need liars and cheats in our positions of public trust, as is now the case.

Cover-ups are the norm here in Burlington and were it not for Spike and Falcon most of us would never know what misdeeds are going on in this city because the local paper is controlled and told what and what not to print.

Still Disgusted

09:30:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Hospitality Suites, Ho!


"Some 4,000 public-sector people are now members of ICSC, and they are one of the fastest-growing segments of the association. About 1,200 of them will be in Las Vegas May 20 to 23."

I checked out the link to Governing Magazine on attracting retailers. It says nothing about bring your golf clubs. Do you think it would do any good to send any of our City leaders to such a convention of retail developers?


No reason to send any of the local losers, they already know everything and tell us every day that they do.


09:28:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Will It Be About Jobs?


A railroad repair facility is closing in Glenville, NY. Does Glenville have any 150 year-old real estate documents lying around? Should they sue?

Could you suggest an attorney for the plaintiff with experience in such a case? If so, is a contingency arrangement a better way to pay?


Any real attorney would have a conscience and realize the merits of such a lawsuit. And the Glenville, NY city council has the balls to fire a loser lawyer like Scott Power should one get a breath of stupidity and make a pitch to sue.


09:21:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Happy Days are Here Again

Obama Buys Bling Ring


Brother, can you spare a rhinestone. What depression?


09:20:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Dreaming of a Red Ink Christmas


"U.S. newspaper advertising revenue collapsed by nearly $2 billion, or 18 percent, in the third quarter, according to the Newspaper Association of America, an industry group. Even online ad revenue made a small U-turn for the second quarter in a row."

Dear Santa Spike:

Grandpa tells me when he was young, Burlington had a real newspaper. Mommy won't let me look at the Advertiser. She says learning to write like correctly is more important than being egotistical because I think I know how to write.

Daddy helps me on the computer. It's fun to find news on Daddy's computer. Daddy says he finds out what is really going in Burlington by reading you, but you can't do it all. Daddy and Grandpa tell me that someday Burlington may have real news on the computer just like a real newspaper used to.

They tell me it will not happen this Christmas. Santa Spike, do you think it will happen by next Christmas?

Cindy Lou Who

We may offer free advertising to see how it works out. Kinda of a Christmas gift to Publisher Steve Delaney's bottom line.


09:20:00 - SPIKE - No comments

02 December

Highway 61 - The Road to Better Retailing


Fed Up has a point about shopping in the Quad-Cities. When will US 61 be four lanes from the Muscatine/Louisa County line to Burlington?


Even the local Ad Vertiser Publisher Steve Delaney and the late Bill Mertens have a penchant for shopping out of town, taking that local ad revenue along with the Quad City Airport ad revenue and spending it locally. Just not in local Burlington.


Will this ever end?

03:24:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Wanna Buy a Vacant Lot?


Governing Magazine ran an article on attracting retailers less than a year before Burlington's Manor Mall fell apart. The article includes ten rules of romancing retailers into your community.

How many of these rules were violated on the Manor Mall project?


Every damn one of them. We have amateurs and misfits shaping our future. Slagle and his band of thieves seemed to have really missed #3.


from Governing Magazine -

"Going shopping for retailers? Here are 10 things to know:

1. Get your hands on the same detailed consumer data the retailers are using. Fill holes in that data with on-the-ground intelligence. If your community wants a hardware store, find out the number of home renovations and building permits that have been issued. “It’s important to know what metrics these folks are using,” says Alyssa Stewart Lee, head of the Urban Markets Initiative at the Brookings Institution. “What your ground truth says about a place can inform their decision matrix.”

2. Time is money. Chains face tremendous pressure to expand locations quickly. They’ll skip your town if the permitting process is too long and complicated. “Stores have to open to keep their stock prices rising,” says retail consultant Robert Gibbs. “A development director for a chain is told to open five stores in a region by a certain date, and if they don’t open he gets fired.”

3. Be realistic. Retailers simply won’t go where they can’t find a critical mass of customers. It doesn’t matter how much a few vocal people in the community may want them. “At the end of the day for retailers, locations are data-driven decisions,” says Joseph Fackel, vice president of the Buxton Co. “If the data doesn’t line up, they don’t do the deal.”

4. Make a retail master plan. Know what types of businesses your community can support (see No. 1), and have viable development sites ready to go. “Cities should have a written policy saying they want to be competitive and gain market share,” says Gibbs. “And they have to have a public parking strategy.”

5. Don’t fight the chains. Instead, work with locally-owned stores to help them survive. If mom-and-pop can’t afford high rents in a newly revitalized area, help them relocate to another part of town. Or, offer low-interest loans to help successful local retailers expand into chains themselves. Don’t forget: Starbucks was once just a small Seattle coffee shop and Wal-Mart a single store in Rogers, Arkansas.

6. Mix uses. Retail often follows other functions and activities. So the best retail strategy sometimes has nothing to do with retail. It has to do with housing, entertainment and culture. “Stop thinking so much about sales tax dollars,” says retail developer James Kaplan. “And think about ways and reasons to get people into town.”

7. Invest in the public realm. Retailers may be leaving shopping malls for more urban settings, but they still want a predictably clean environment where their customers feel safe. Lighting is especially important: 70 percent of all sales occur after 5:30 p.m. “Cities need to have high design standards for signage, lighting and building design and be willing to enforce those standards,” says Gibbs.

8. Consider incentives. Retailers won’t go where their customers aren’t — see No. 3. But many chains are risk-averse and are unwilling to locate in unproven markets without a little help. Plus, anchor stores are accustomed to cutting deals on rent at shopping malls. “Bigger-format retailers come with an expectation of lower rents,” says Paul Levy, president of the Center City business improvement district in Philadelphia. “In most cities, they’ve been able to get their way. That’s the reality of the marketplace.”

9. Be patient. Although retailers are often looking for fast returns, many also plan for expansion several years out. Retail recruitment efforts may not pay immediate dividends, but relationships formed now may pay off five years from now.

10. Keep up with the times. Retail trends come and go like women’s fashions. But you can’t hide a dead Marshall Fields or Tower Records in the back of the closet. Enclosed malls are out. Lifestyle centers are in. What retail concept will be hot next?"

03:23:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Matching the Prototype


The model railroaders using Burlington as a prototype strive for realism. Their efforts are worth making it over to their open house events, especially if you can take the kids.

Railroad crossings in downtown Burlington are being removed and those remaining are to be made quiet. Do you think the model railroad club will need to revamp the downtown section of their lay out to reflect the resulting business renaissance?


03:21:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Trump in a Slump


There is no comb-over for thinning revenues in the casino business. The great Donald Trump is suffering a reversal at the casino wheel of fortune. Trump's gambling properties are unable to make their interest payment.

Trump should seek refinancing from City Bank of Burlington. If all you show is a minuscule single quarter profit when your annual contract renewal comes due, you have nothing to worry about.


Only a matter of time for it to catch up locally.


03:10:00 - SPIKE - No comments

01 December

Endeavour Lands in California

With commander Chris Ferguson and pilot Eric Boe at the controls, space shuttle Endeavour descended to a smooth landing at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif. The STS-126 crew members concluded their successful mission to the International Space Station when the shuttle touched down at 4:25 p.m. EST.

Endeavour arrived at the station Nov. 16, delivering equipment that will help allow the station to double its crew size to six. In addition, the STS-126 astronauts delivered Expedition 18 Flight Engineer Sandra Magnus, who replaced Greg Chamitoff, now a mission specialist who returned to Earth aboard Endeavour.

STS-126 is the 124th shuttle mission and 27th shuttle flight to visit the space station.

NASA Image

08:06:06 - SPIKE - No comments

Buy Local Attitude – You Owe Me


I try to spend my money locally. But I am sick and tired of the prevalent attitude that I owe these local retailers my business. I don’t “owe” these people anything!

If you local clowns want any more of my business get your act together. What little money I have spent just as easily in Davenport over the weekend and I didn’t have to kiss somebody’s butt to do business with them.

Fed Up

08:00:31 - SPIKE - No comments

Taxed to Death


I sure was disappointed to find out that the average amount spent on Friday by shoppers was $378. Really? Someone else was spreading my wealth on Friday?

What am I thinking? I have no money. All my money is going to pay my taxes.

Taxed to Death

07:54:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Burlington's Obsession With Greed


No shoppers were killed or injured at Manor Mall on Friday. Burlington's obsession with greed has so far generated only fiscal and career casualties.


07:45:07 - SPIKE - No comments

The Literary Booby Prize to the Advertiser


I saw the link to Iowa City's literary fame at Derailed 11-22. The link referred to a news article dated 11-21. The same story appears in the Advertiser's Thanksgiving fluff 11-27.

Anything negative about the Advertiser's political favorites takes weeks to appear in the Advertiser and only after you, or Falcon, make it known. If literate people worked at the Advertiser, do you think they would find things out any faster?


07:43:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Criminal Cover Ups


It would appear that the rash of criminal cover-ups in Burlington in recent years involves the Burlington Police Department, Burlington School System and the City Council. Of course, the Hawk Eye is right in there filtering the news to please its controllers.

One privileged name was left out of the school fight, one mayor resigned because of an un-enforced drunk driving charge that would have sent him to prison and now, rumors have it that a previous city manager was let go by the police on a drunken driving incident.

This type of behavior points to government out of control and it reeks of corruption from the top down. Our city council can’t even find lights taken down from the Manor failure. This just smells of corruption by elected officials all of which must be liars because they do know and don’t want the public to know what degree of illegality went on regarding these lights.

The BPD is no better than the people they let go on serious charges to re-threaten the public again with their irresponsible and illegal behavior.

A city is no better than the people elected, appointed and trusted to represent the public; so I guess this means Burlington rates an “F” when it comes to public trust and an “A” for dishonesty and favoritism.

Where’s the Hawk Eye while all this crime goes unreported? Well, the local rag turns a blind eye when it comes to crimes committed by elected officials and local department heads. It only reports the little people crime while it lets the ruling party off completely. The Hawk Eye is a loser publication that’s drawing their third breath from being propped up by a few organizations buying large ad space and emulates the Pravda of old.

Until the voters wake up in Burlington and Des Moines County by voting in good honest people, something that’s been missing for years nothing will change and it will be deception as usual by local politicians and appointees.


07:42:17 - SPIKE - No comments