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Category Archives: Rensselaer County

Congressional Bickering Costs American Lives

Months of worthless investigations and testimony, a failed impeachment investigation and proceeding, headed by a bunch of idiots elected to public office by another bunch of idiots, all while in Wuhan, China, the next killer pandemic was brewing. At the same time the US Congress was playing their backstabbing, witchhunting antics, and giving away American taxpayer’s medical equipment and supplies, while ignoring the basics for the homeland, like healthcare, the elderly, the working poor, and Congress and state legislatures were legislating abortion and pay hikes for themselves, the highly-paid executives of America’s so-called non-profits — like the Captial District YMCA and Easton Mountain sex camp — were abusing veterans or promoting promiscuous sex, while collecting six-figure salaries, WHERE WERE YOU?!?!

A body wrapped in plastic is unloaded from a refrigerated truck and handled by medical workers wearing personal protective equipment due to COVID-19 concerns, Tuesday, March 31, 2020, at Brooklyn Hospital Center in the Brooklyn borough of New York. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)

Meanwhile, the Pentagon will Provide 100,000 Body Bags.

Now that you have learned what self-isolation, quarantine, social-distancing, empty supermarket shelves, people roaming the aisles and streets with face masks all means, maybe you’d like to re-evaluate your status as a “free American,” who is free to die as the result of government and elected official’s negligence and stupidity.

Look, people, this situation doesn’t happen in a single administration; it takes multiple administrations to create a problem like this! This has been brewing in Washington for at least three presidencies: Bush (remember 911!), Obama, and now Trump. It’s not Trump’s fault, either, but he’s the face we glue to the administration. The fault lies in the Senate and the House of Representatives, in Albany, and in Washington, DC. If you look at what’s been going on in Congress over the past two years, you might want to find a barf bag. It’s sickening, so sickening that Americans are now dying, and the Pentagon will be donating 100,000 body bags, while Nancy Pelosi and the gangsters in Washington D.C., are still pointing fingers and wagging their tongues.

Medical staff move bodies from the Wyckoff Heights Medical Center to a refrigerated truck on April 2, 2020 in Brooklyn, New York. – The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has asked the US Defense Department for 100,000 body bags as the toll mounts from the novel coronavirus, the Pentagon said on April 2. White House experts have said that US deaths from the disease — currently at more than 5,100 — are expected to climb to between 100,000 and 240,000, even with mitigation efforts in force. (Photo by Angela Weiss / AFP)

Is this the new Fear Factor? Is the US government trying to cause a panic? It has!

The New World Order has begun, people! You know now how you can be so infected with fear and anxiety by your government that you hoard toilet paper and paper towels; you race to Walmart and your local supermarket to empty the shelves. FEAR!!! AVOIDABLE FEAR!!!!

Businesses and government offices are CLOSED! Restaurants are CLOSED! You are told to stay home!!! See how easy it is to control you? Now we know.

Schools have been closed for weeks. Even God is put on hold! Churches are open but not for public worship! No wakes, funerals, etc. No closure for the bereaved! Thanks to poor or absent government! Incompetent elected officials! More finger-pointing and accusations while Americans are dying!!!

But the United States Goverenment has a solution for its incompetence: SPENDING! What’s Inside The Senate’s $2 Trillion Coronavirus Aid Package, an emergency aid spending package that is spending money we don’t have, but will have to back up in tax dollars. Great planning, right? Poor planning costs us a bundle when a pandemic hits us and then, in order to take our attention off the poor planning and incompetent government, the same incompetent government passes an irresponsible aid package to cover their tracks!  Are you going to continue swallowing this shit? Are you still going to sleep on your stomach waiting for the …. ? Read what the package contains at What’s Inside The Senate’s $2 Trillion Coronavirus Aid Package. But once again, big business gets the lion’s share of the so-called aid: $500 billion compared with $377 billion to small businesses and a stinking paltry $153 billion to public health. We can see where Congress’ loyalties are.

You all have dumped your hard-wire landlines and now are addicted to Facebook and Twitter, where you get all your information and news! How convenient for the Controllers.

People are getting fired or relieved of their commands in the military for speaking out about the government’s denials of support in the crisis. That’s censorship. That’s propaganda. That’s authoritarianism, totalitarianism, the first step towards Big Brother becoming the next fascist dictator!

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (Calif.) on Capitol Hill after a meeting with fellow Democrats. (Susan Walsh/AP) (Susan Walsh/AP)

You are all addicted to your electronic devices, your smartphones but what will you do when some military genius or government officials ORDER THE CELL PHONE TOWERS deenergized? What will you do when they suspend communications by microwave transmission? You’ll race around in circles like a cornered rat, that’s what!!! You’re trapped in the booby trap set by your American freedoms, your greed, and your ignorance. Stupid sheeple!!!

OK. So you won’t believe us. Denial is very effective, isn’t it? But perhaps you’ll believe a well-respected physician, the editor-in-chief of a respected source for the medical profession. Here’s his recent editorial that appeared in the online medical journal for physicians, Medscape:

Pathology & Lab Medicine
Perspective > Medscape > Eric Topol on Medscape

Topol: US Betrays Healthcare Workers in Coronavirus Disaster
Eric Topol, MD

March 30, 2020

Find the latest COVID-19 news and guidance in Medscape’s Coronavirus Resource Center.

The year 2020 started with American physicians, nurses, and the whole healthcare workforce dispirited, in a deep state of burnout, with the worst rates of clinical depression and suicides that have been recorded. Indeed, this was not confined to the United States; a global epidemic of burnout had been diagnosed. But things were about to get considerably worse for the healthcare workforce.

In December 2019 an epidemic of pneumonia, with many fatalities, erupted in Wuhan, China. The pathogen was sequenced and determined to be a novel coronavirus on January 5, 2020, and was subsequently named SARS-CoV-2. The first patient in the United States with COVID-19, the disease caused by SARS-CoV-2, was diagnosed in Seattle on January 21, which was within 24 hours of the first patient diagnosed in South Korea, a key country for comparison (Figure, adapted from Our World in Data).

Figure 1. Testing for COVID-19 in the United States and South Korea

The First Phase: “Silent” US Spread

Unlike South Korea, which quickly started testing for COVID-19 using the World Health Organization (WHO) test, the United States refused the WHO test, opting to develop its own through the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). But the CDC test was ultimately found to be flawed and represents one of many government stumbles. Without an adequate test, there were nearly 50 days from the first patients in both countries before the United States started to ramp up testing. Why was this so critically important?

During this extended phase in the United States, there were countless numbers of patients presenting with pneumonia and respiratory tract symptoms to emergency rooms, urgent care centers, and doctors’ offices. Without the ability to make the diagnosis of COVID-19 or even suspect it, these patients unwittingly spread their infections to healthcare workers. Also, during this first phase of spread, there was likely — albeit still not yet validated — a high rate (approximately 30%) of asymptomatic carriers for COVID-19, which further amplified the chances for doctors and health professionals to be infected.

For the sake of comparison, during the month of February, South Korea performed more than 75,000 tests (versus just 352 in the United States) and adopted all of the WHO best practices, which includes massive testing, tracing every contact of a person infected and testing that person, quarantine of all known cases, and social distancing.

The United States did none of these. Instead, officials repeatedly made bad choices that put public health in jeopardy, along with the healthcare workers charged with caring for the public.

South Korea, meanwhile, got ahead of its outbreak and became a model in the world for how that was achieved. But it wasn’t just South Korea that reacted well. As Atul Gawande summarized, Singapore and Hong Kong also adopted all of the WHO practices, including providing protection for their healthcare workers. In both places, healthcare professionals were expected to wear surgical masks for all patient interactions. That practice turns out to foreshadow the second phase of failure in the United States.

The Second Phase: The War Without Ammo

Although Seattle is where the first cluster of cases occurred, it was the unchecked number of patients diagnosed in New York City in early March that led to the full realization of how ill-equipped the country is in terms of personal protective equipment (PPE), intensive care unit beds, and mechanical ventilators.

The dire, inexplicable lack of masks is well recapitulated by Farhad Manjoo in “How the World’s Richest Country Ran Out of a 75-Cent Face Mask”, and Megan Ranney, MD, MPH, and colleagues similarly describe the profound deficits in PPE and ventilators in a perspective published in the New England Journal of Medicine.

Together, a situation was set up for healthcare workers to not have masks — or to reuse them for days on end — and lack other protective gear. And this is about plain 75 cent masks, not the N95s that are better for blocking aerosol droplets.

But the required sharing of equipment is not just among doctors and nurses; it even extends to patients sharing a ventilator in some intensive care units. To put some numbers on ventilators, we will need several hundred thousand to a million but have fewer than 160,000 throughout the country.

It’s bad enough that the United States was totally unprepared for a pandemic and has such an unimaginable shortage of requisite resources. But the situation still gets worse. On a widespread basis, doctors and nurses are being gagged and muzzled by administrators for expressing their concerns, and penalized or even fired when they do speak out.

Meanwhile, the unconscionable lack of COVID-19 testing has continued in this second phase. And with that, systematic testing of the workforce has yet to start, despite being desperately needed.

The Third Phase: Healthcare Professionals Broadly Infected and Dying

Back in Wuhan, Li Wenliang, a 33-year-old ophthalmologist, was one, if not the first, doctor to alert people in China of the outbreak. He died on February 7, 2020. But he certainly wasn’t the youngest doctor to die in China. Xia Sisi, a 29-year-old gastroenterologist, also died after a 35-day hospitalization.

Yet on March 11, from the Oval Office, President Trump stated, “Young and healthy people can expect to recover fully and quickly.”

By late March more than 54 doctors in Italy had already died, and in the Lombardy region of northern Italy, one of the worst hit regions in the world, 20% of the healthcare workforce have become confirmed cases. Now, in the United States, as large numbers of healthcare professionals are getting diagnosed with COVID-19 in Boston, New York, and other hotspot cities, young doctors are writing their wills and making provisional funeral plans.

COVID-19 was not supposed to kill young people, but young nurses and doctors are dying in the United States. There are many theories as to why this is happening, perhaps the best one is the viral load — the mass of COVID-19 inoculum.

Because healthcare workers are exposed to the sickest patients — often without access to the proper protective equipment — the heavy viral load may be overwhelming even young clinicians’ ability to mount a sufficient immune response to counter the infection.

That doctors and clinicians are succumbing to the virus is beyond a tragedy, as many of these dedicated individuals are dying unnecessarily, as a result of the no-testing and no-PPE fiascoes.

Yet a far greater toll in numbers is the temporary loss of clinicians to infections and sickness. This is the other poorly recognized exponential growth curve: As each doctor, nurse, respiratory therapist, paramedic, and patient-care person takes care of tens to hundreds of patients at any given time, the loss of even one of these individuals has a dramatic ripple effect on the shortage of professionals trained to care for affected patients, no less the non-COVID-19 usual patient mix. No number of accelerated medical school graduations (which are being announced) can compensate for these losses, not just by numbers but also by experience.

The handling of the COVID-19 pandemic in the United States will go down as the worst public health disaster in the history of the country. The loss of lives will make 9/11 and so many other catastrophes appear much smaller in their scale of devastation. Perhaps what we in the medical community will remember most is how our country betrayed us at the moment when our efforts were needed most.

Eric J. Topol, MD, the editor-in-chief of Medscape, is one of the top 10 most cited researchers in medicine and frequently writes about technology in healthcare, including in his latest book, Deep Medicine: How Artificial Intelligence Can Make Healthcare Human Again.

Follow Medscape on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube

Medscape © 2020 WebMD, LLC

Any views expressed above are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect the views of WebMD or Medscape.

Cite this: Eric J. Topol. Topol: US Betrays Healthcare Workers in Coronavirus Disaster – Medscape – Mar 30, 2020.

We’ve kept the links in Dr Topol’s article so you can follow the facts.

Question: Why is it that the death toll in the United States now exceeds that in China, where the whole thing started? Why is it that South Korea, Hong Kong, Japan, were able to keep things under control but the United States cannot? Good ol’ American snobbery, poor planning, greed, and stupidity.

Instead of acting like a herd of cattle with mad cow disease (remember that one?), perhaps you should just sit down, meditate for a minute, collect your thoughts, clear your mind, and consider where the real problem lies, and how you’re going to face tomorrow, when this all clears up.

Think about how different you will be and how different the world will be for you post-COVID-19; sort of like the conditioning you received post-911? Is this another way of training you, conditioning you like Pavlov did with his dogs? Is that what you have become, a pack of trainable dogs? Now that’s something to be proud of, isn’t it?

Think about all of this next time you pledge allegiance to a flag; think about what you’re saying. Or have you forgotten completely how to THINK?

Think of it this way: What if you were the next one to fill a body bag. How would your survivors or your Senator explain your death to your terrified children? Think about that, won’t you?

So, enjoy your stockpile of toilet paper and paper towels. They’ll go well with that case of ketchup you’re hoarding. And wait for the next wave of fear and anxiety while you huddle in some dark corner, denying what’s going on around you.

Local Residents at Shop’n Save buying up toilet paper! How typical!

 
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Posted by on April 4, 2020 in * Sick Community, 1984, 19th Congressional District, 19th Congressional District, 20th Congressional District, 20th Congressional District, 46th District, 46th Senate District, Abuse of Public Office, Albany, Albany County District Attorney, Albany County Executive, Albany County Executive, Albany County Legislature, Antonio Delgado, Bethlehem Y, Bethlehem YMCA, BULLSHIT, Burning the Constitution, C. David Brown, Capital District, Capital District YMCA, Capital Region Independent Media, Carver Construction, Catskill-Hudson Newspapers, CDYMCA, Civil Rights, Coeymans, Columbia-Greene Media, Constitution, Consumer Protection, Corrupt Legislature, Daily Mail, Democrats, District Attorney, Elected Official, Elections and Voting, FaceBook, Facebook, Freedom, Freedom of Speech, Funeral, Funeral Home, George A. Amedore, George Amedore, George Langdon, Government, Governor Andrew Cuomo, Greene County, Greene County District Attorney, Greene County Legislature, Greene County News, Greene County YMCA, Gyms, Health and Fitness, Healthcare, Hearst Corporation, Hudson Valley, Johnson Newspaper Group, Kate Lisa, Kristin Gillibrand, Law Enforcement, Liberty Weeping, New Baltimore, New Baltimore Democrats, New York, New York State, New York State Constitution, New York State Department of Health, News Channel 10, News Channel 13, News Channel 6, News Herald, Nineteen Eighty Four, Non-Profit, Non-profit, Non-profit scam, NYS Assembly, NYS Senate, NYSDOH, Ravena, Ravena Coeymans Selkirk Central School District, Ravena News Herald, RegisterStar, Rensselaer County, Republican Party, Schenectady, Schenectady County, Senate District 46, Tax Exempt, The Daily Mail, Times Union, Town of Bethlehem, Town of Coeymans, Town of New Baltimore, Unamerican Activity, United States Government, US Senate, Washington County District Attorney, YMCA, Young Men's Christian Association, Young Mens Christian Association

 

Some Food for Thought: Make the Change!

Attention All Independence Party Members
Caution: All Other Parties

Since the disgusting performance of the major political parties, the Republican and the Democratic, and the thuggery and bullying that went on during the so-called campaigns, which were nothing less than a neonazi display of mindlessness, we’ve been taking a serious look at the political party options in our Central New York region, and have come up with a real opportunity for voters who have had enough of being castrated and deprived of their voices in local and regional politics.

The Answer: the Independence Party.

We are making this statement based on our investigations of the Greene County New York Independence Party; we have serious reservations about the leadership of some of the surrounding counties, particularly Albany County, but Schoharie, Ulster, Columbia counties need some prodding to support each other. That’s a problem with their leadership (their committee chairs and executive committees) not with their membership. Independence party members, that is, the real people who register Independence Party are the salt of the earth. Real people, working hard to better their communities, and sick of the lies and stuffed shirts the major parties offer at each election.

True, there are some genuine people in the New York State Legislature, and one name pops up right away, Assemblyman Chris Teague, a Republican supported by the Independence Party, who is a genuine people  person. We’d like to hear from readers if there are any others like him. Just for kicks and giggles.

The Independence Party in Greene County, NY, has almost 2000 registered voters countywide, and that doesn’t count the non-Independence supporters from the other parties and those supporters not affiliated with any political party! The Greene County Independence Party has voter power big-time as well as being attractive to those Americans who want to put the “I” back in INDEPENDENCE, and leave those others who live in dependence on the failures of the Republican and Democratic Parties and those parties riding on their coattails, like the Conservatives and other useless fluff on the political scene.

Greene County’s Independence Party family is an active and outgoing group, who reach out to those neighbors looking for truth and integrity in politics, community organizations, everyone without exception or discrimination or snooty arrogance. The Greene County Independence Party is there to help rebuild our communities!

Some of the other counties in New York (like Albany, for example, who sold the Town of Coeymans down the river, backed a maverick sneak for Greene County Sheriff, among other scurrilous backroom political freak show acts), Greene County is up front, open, welcoming, honest. Anyone who knows Smalbany knows that if that were not true, we’d be singing another tune. Trust us!


IMPORTANT NOTE

Greene County Independence Party

There are those out there, mostly the puppets of the major parties, who have nothing good to say about anything if it’s not going their way. And there are those out there who are sucking us dry when it comes to our rights and liberties, even our guaranteed right of freedom of expression (free speech).

We mention this because in our extensive research we have found some absolutely ridiculous claims being made in the media regarding the Independence Party’s name, because it contains the word “Independence,” which they want to change! They claim that Independence in the party’s name “confuses people” and causes them to register thinking that they are registering as voters independent of any political party, that is, as non-party affiliated voters.

Anyone with half of a brain would discard such rubbish not only as idiotic but also offensive to the voters registering. Such a statement would mean that voters are ignorant, can’t read, or are totally stupid. It’s a half-hearted, desperate attempt to try to further confuse the people. We could use the same stupid reasoning when talking about the “Republican” or the “Democratic” parties, but we’re far too genuine to play their idiotic games. After all, just about every foundation document in our nation’s history contains the words “republic” or “independence,” less frequently “democracy” or “democratic.” They are part of the American political vocabulary and carry huge meaning and significance. But does that fact come up as confusing people?

When you register to vote please understand that when you register as an Independent you are registering as a member of the Independence Party; if you want to be completely “independent” of any political party, that is, if you don’t want to be associated with any party, you need to register NOP or no party affiliation. There is a difference and we want you to know about that fact.

The Editor


Everyone wants Independence votes!!!

In Greene County, the Independence Party includes almost 2000 registered voters in 12 communities. That’s a lot of votes and is the reason why candidates running for office at all levels run to the Independence Party to get the Independence voters to support them. This is extremely important for candidates who are concerned that their own party, the Republicans or the Democrats, won’t carry them through the election, or refuse to provide needed support, and they won’t have the votes to get elected. Everyone wants Independence votes!!!

Independence Party Members Working to Get their Own Independence Candidates on the Ballot

Enough is enough, people. Independence Party members in Greene County, at least, have to get together and stop giving the farm away! Why are Independence Party members wasting their time handing their votes to failing parties’ candidates? Why aren’t Independence Party members working to get their own Independence candidates on the ballot, and finally clean up local and regional politics for a starter?

They’re waking up and saying, “Hey! We have great numbers, a great vision, a great group of people working for the community. We can do it!”

The answer is likely that the Independence Party members simply don’t know the power they have! it’s the best-kept secret out there in politico-land. Why? Because, unlike Greene County Independents, the leadership in the surrounding counties see a good thing for themselves when they can play power-broker games with the major parties and their candidates. Most of the other counties and the State Committee are out of touch with everyone and everything but themselves. Greene County Independents are some of the first to wake up and smell the tires burning. They’re waking up and saying, “Hey! We have great numbers, a great vision, a great group of people working for the community. We can do it!”

Smalbany and many others agree, although some of those “others” are running scared and trying their best to kill any so-called “third party” from exposing the major parties’ failures. One such villain is Mario Cuomo, you know, the monkey-faced, angry, enraged governor of New York state who lets his only supporters out of the jails to endanger the lives of the rest of us. Cuomo is out with a vengeance to do a hatchet job on the third parties. He and his party handlers are running scared. They see the writing on the wall!

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, a Democrat, remarks in a speech: “We’re not going to make America great again. It was never that great,” and his audience gasps (August 15, 2018).That’s the kind of leadership our major parties provide!

Here are some numbers from the Greene County Independence Party. Note that Greene County is a small county in terms of population, and is historically Republican (old Republican, that is). So, when you get numbers like these in the major population centers in Greene County, it means something big is happening:

Registered Independence Party Members in Greene County NY (Source Greene BoE)

When you think about it, in most local elections a candidate is elected by 1 vote! Just think of all the recent elections where the major parties, the Republicans and the Democrats, couldn’t even come up with a candidate to run against the incumbent or the other party’s candidate, and then think that if the Independence Party ran a candidate, a real person, a people’s candidate, how different things would be.

Only Voters Change Things, Not the Politicians

The major parties are always preaching change but they never come up with any. Only the faces change; the circus goes on, business-as-usual. The fact is, only voters change things, not just registered voters but registered voters who truly want to make a difference, who truly want change, and who realize that they have the power right now right in their hands to make those changes. One of the first changes is to change your party affiliation from Republican or Democrat to Independence Party. Send the bastards a message!

Be Proud: Be Independence!

Fact is: The only thing you give up is your vote in the primaries which is not really a choice at all, because the party is telling you who you have to choose from. In the elections, you don’t have to vote for any major party candidate; you don’t have to vote for your party’s choice. You can vote for anyone you like! Use your head, not some label forced on you. Be yourself, appear at town and village meetings, be a good citizen and an even better neighbor, and be Independent. You’ll shine in the crowd, and you’ll be happier with yourself.

Acknowledgements: Special thanks to the late Mr George Acker, Sr., previous Chairman of the Greene County NY Independence Party (GCNYIP). Mr Acker was a devoted and committed man to the best interests of the Greene County Independence Party, his community, and his neighbors throughout Greene County. He will be greatly missed, Thanks also to Ms Irene Beede, Administrative Assistant, GCNYIP, and Ms Elisa Jarvis of the Greene County Board of Elections (GCBOE) for their much appreciated assistance and inputs making this report possible.

 
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Posted by on January 10, 2020 in 19th Congressional District, 19th Congressional District, 2019 Elections, 20th Congressional District, 20th Congressional District, 46th District, 46th Senate District, Absentee Ballot, Albany County Board of Elections, Albany County Elections, Albany County Independence Party, Ashland, Cairo, Capital District, Captain Weasel Whacker, Catskill, Coeymanazis, Coeymans Elections, Coeymans Town Board, Columbia County Independence Party, Conservative Party, County Legislator, Cpt Weasel Whacker, Deceit, Democratic Caucus, Democratic Party Committee, Diana Benoit, Durham, Elected Official, Elections 2019, Elections and Voting, Facebook, Freehold, Friends of Coeymans, Fundraiser, Fundraising, George Acker, George Acker, George Amedore, Government, Governor Mario Cuomo, Greene County, Greene County Board of Elections, Greene County Board of Elections, Greene County Elections, Greene County Independence Party, Greene County Legislature, Greene County Weasels, Greene Weasel Whackers, Greeneville, Greenville, Halcott Center, Hudson Valley, Hunter, Independence Party, Independence Party, Jewett, Joe Stanzione, Joseph Stanzione, Lexington, Lies, New Baltimore, New Baltimore Democrats, New Baltimore Elections, New Baltimore Elections, New Baltimore Republican Club, New York, New York State, New York State Board of Elections, New York State Election Law, New York State Election Law, Office of the Governor, Paul Caputo, Prattsville, Ravena Coeymans Selkirk, Rensselaer, Rensselaer County, Republican Party Committee, Schenectady County, Schoharie County Independence Party, Town of Cairo, Ulster County Independence Party, Uncontested Election, Unopposed Candidate, Voting Irregularities, Weasel Whackers, Windham

 

A Response to Lorin Marra. re: Office of the Albany County Coroners

We published an article “Politics, Power, Patronage and Conflicts of Interest: The Albany County Coroners Office” on September 13, 2017, about the office of the Albany County Coroners, and how the office is obsolete, tainted, and chock full of local funeral directors. The politics of the coroners’ office is as corrupt as it can get, and is a product of the nepotism and favoritism that has plagued Albany politics from within the mayor’s office to the police department to the office of the county coroner.


In the preparation phase of the article, we did extensive research both on the history of the office of coroner in general, including scholarly articles discussing the office of the coroner, and published professional journal articles comparing and critiquing the office of the coroner and the office of medical director. In addition to our research of public information and education material and the scholarly and professional journals, we also filed demands for the production of documents and information with Albany, Schenectady, Rensselaer and Green Counties for information on their respective coroners or medical examiners.

Seal of the County of Albany, NY

Overall, personal contacts with the Albany County Office of the Coroner were very open and informative. The demands served on the counties of Schenectady (medical examiner), Rensselaer (medical examiner), and Greene (coroners) under the NYS Freedom of Information Law were less than open and honest. Rensselaer is in violation of the law by not having responded at all; Schenectady and Greene county, while responding, were evasive and off base. Why all the defensiveness? They’re not so defensive when asking for funding but then, in our culture of death denial, who really keeps tabs on them anyway? WE DO!

We received an interesting comment from Lorin Marra, who is somehow associated with the Marra Funeral Home and with Paul Marra, the “owner/operator” of Mara Funeral home in Cohoes and an Albany County Coroner. When we received Lorin’s comment we were a bit taken by its defensiveness and it only later occurred to us that it’s an election year and Paul Marra is running for re-election as an Albany County Coroner. Having made that connection, it was not surprising that a Marra family member would come out and defend Paul Marra, the candidate.

But wasn’t it a bit cowardly, a clear lack of integrity for someone running for public office not to personally respond in a comment and have his daughter respond for him. Maybe Paul left his cojones in the autopsy room, at one of the allegedly “1000” autopsies he claims to have attended (but no one in official circles knows about). Did anyone see that pig flying by just now? Wanna buy a bridge?

According to Lorin Marra, pigs really do have wings!

.It should be noted that Ms Lorin Marra doesn’t comment on any of the many facts and figures given in the “Politics, Power, Patronage and Conflicts of Interest” article but hones in only on the name “Marra,” which is mentioned in only the most neutral of terms: strictly factually. But, as we state in our response, “Where there’s smoke (or “defensiveness”) there’s gotta be fire.” What do you think?

Marra’s Campaign Sign
flanking those of opponents Simmons and Lockridge.

For those of you who have read our article “Politics, Power, Patronage and Conflicts of Interest: The Albany County Coroners Office,” you’ll certainly have to ask yourself Why? is Lorin Marra so upset. Have we touched a nerve? The fact is, Paul Marra is barely mentioned in the article, and not negatively in any sense of the word. Maybe one of our readers can help us out with this one. We’re republishing Lorin Marra’s confused comment together with our responses. [In the following text “Ed.”: is a note inserted by the Editor]


In reply to Lorin Marra:

We have approved your rant only to illustrate the fact that where a commenter becomes as defensive as you have, there must be something going on that needs further attention. As the saying goes: Where there’s smoke, there’s fire.

We’d like to make it quite clear from the outset that the article is not about Paul Marra nor about the Marra Funeral Home operation; the article is about the office of the coroner both in Albany County and in general. Mr Marra is mentioned, along with others, in the article because he has voluntarily stepped forward and has received the approval and support of the Albany county Democrats and their political machine to have been elected to be an Albany County Coroner. Mr Marra, his office, his associations, and his keepers, therefore, have made Mr Marra a public figure and that visibility is open to comment. Mr Marra, his interests, his associations, his performance and all other aspects of Mr Marra are subject to comment because of his status as a public figure. Period.

Lorin Marra writes:

This article is completely false…

We Responded:

That having been said, we can respond to your diatribe by saying that the information we provided in the article came either from official sources and based on what those sources, that is, the Office of the Albany County Coroner, provided in response to our demand for documents and information under the NY Public Officers Law. If any of our information were incorrect, it is because it was provided by the custodians of that information as public officers and public employees. So let’s put that part of your comment to rest and redirect your misdirected hissy fit to the proper target: the County of Albany.

You are terribly clouded in your perspective of reality if you represent, as you in fact write in your comment, which, as written is a bit unclear, “[M]ost coroners are in fact funeral directors nor [sic] for a political agenda but…” (the rest of that sentence does not contribute to a better understanding of your rather strained thought process). We do not propose in any way that funeral directors are funeral directors for a political agenda. Where you pulled that one out of is beyond us but if you take the time to actually read the article with your eyes open, you’ll actually see what we’ve written. To deny, particularly in Albany County, that the office of the County Coroner is politically tainted is tantamount to claiming that a 3-dollar bank note is legal currency in the US. How naïve? can you possibly be or How devious? might be a better question.

Lorin Marra writes:

…a coroner does not get paid enough by the state [Ed.: Paul L Marra is an Albany County official but is civil service, and gets his check from NY state. Currently he gets $$20,836 a year.] to actually make a living off of just being a coroner. Most coroners are in fact funeral directors not for a political agenda but because they have the knowledge and experience dealing with the deceased. Marra funeral home is in fact OWNED by Paul Marra.

We Responded:

We don’t give a whit whether Paul Marra “OWNS” (your caps!) Marra Funeral Home. But that confirmation by you certainly bolsters our statements about conflicts of interest.

Lorin Marra writes:

Coroners are NOT allowed to use their position to gain business in their personal funeral homes [Ed.: “Not allowed…” is true; what you seem to glance over is that they DO abuse their positions! It’s a human weakness.] Do you realize how many calls a coroner must go on during their respective shift? If they actually claimed all those funerals [Ed.: They don’t have to claim “all” the funerals, just some.] they would be a multi-millionaire which is not the case for any coroners [Ed.: But may be true for some funeral directors.]. The funeral home business tends to be a hereditary business, most people do not wake up in the morning and decide HEY I’M GOING TO WORK WITH DEAD PEOPLE FOR THE REST OF MY LIFE, they [Who do?] tend to go into the business because a previous family member has and so on.

We Responded:

We agree, though, that ethically “Coroners are NOT [again your caps!] allowed to use their position to gain business in their personal funeral homes.” What we don’t quite get is your point. Whether they are “allowed” has no practical or real effect on whether they do misuse their positions. One point you seem to have missed [again!] is that they can garner political and professional capital even if they don’s use their own “personal” funeral home. Think about that for a minute and if you don’t get it, please let us know and we’ll walk you through it.

Again, we agree with you that many funeral homes may be what we properly call “family funeral homes,” or funeral homes that stay in a single family’s hands for a couple of generations. That is changing and, if you read our articles with the intent to understand what is actually written rather than what the voices in your head are telling you to see, you will find that we are ardent champions of the family-owned, local funeral home as opposed to the multi-state factory funeral service corporations. But you likely would have missed that point. [Ed.: You may want to see our articles: “Birds of a Feather? Lying down with dogs? The Politics of Funeral Corporations….” and “Bring Out Your Dead! A Monty Python Prophesy“.]

Lorin Marra writes:

The fact that coroners can’t make a living off of just being a coroner (less than $30,000 a year) should prove that this article was a waste of time.

We Responded:

You have failed to disguise your arrogance, though, when you state that “coroners can’t make a living off of just being a coroner” [Oh! Your grammar is painful!] No, I wouldn’t think that they’d be able to do anything by just “being a coronoer,” I’d expect they’d have to actually do something besides just being an anything. But the City of Albany and the County of Albany have literally dozens of “employees” and “appointees” who make good money by just “being” a something and not necessarily doing anything. Besides, many people, perhaps not in your privileged group, have to make a living and even support a family on “less than $30,000 a year”. Get a grip, Lorin, and join the real world. (Your Mercedes is showing!).

Lorin Marra writes:

Also, Paul Marra has been a coroner for 29 years and has been a board cerified medi legal death investigator for over 15 tears. He has take n charge of over 5000 death investigations and attended well over 1000 autopsies. He also has trained for over 600 hours with the State association of County Coroners. [Ed.: Lorin Marra seems to keep better records and statistics than the County of Albany. Wonder where she got her figures?]

We Responded:

Has Paul Marra actually seen what’s behind this door?

The fact that “Paul Marra has been a coroner for 29 years and has been a board-certified medi [sic] legal death investicator for over 15 years” again supports everything we have written in the article you appear to be disputing. While we are struggling to identify what a “board[-]certified medi legal [Ed.: The word Lorin is struggling to get right twice (!) is “medicolegal.” Is she really a Siena graduate?] death investigator” might be, we would like to ask the glaring question that emerges from your statement: If he has been a coroner for 29 years but certified to investigate deaths for only 15 of those 29 years, how many mistakes did he make in the 14 years when he was not “certified?” The fact that he has been a coroner for 29 years, elected every 4 years, simply proves that too little scrutiny goes into the office of coroner and further supports the fact that in Albany County, once you’re in you’re in for life.

You state that Paul Marra has “trained for over 600 with the State [A]ssociation of County Coroners.” We’re not in the least impressed by that statement. Here’s an example: In one summer, a contributor of ours trained in a major hospital for over 500 hours to earn just one unit of Clinical Pastoral Education credit towards his qualifications. I repeat, that was 500 hours in one summer for one credit! We assume that you’re referring to 600 hours for Mr Marra’s training over a number of years. That’s not impressive in the least, especially when you consider the years of training that a real medicolegal death investigator must do to qualify and then the continuing education required just to keep the pathologist’s licence! Please, don’t talk to us about Mr Marra’s paltry training record!

Lorin Marra writes:

Please do your research next time.

We Responded:

The article, dear Lorin, clearly states the facts as provided by official sources, in particular the Albany County Coroner’s Office, and information from public access sources and published articles. Our facts are true, complete and correct, which is more than we can say about your subjective and clearly biased remarks about your relative, Paul Marra.

Furthermore, the professional and scientific literature abounds with one single conspicuous observation: The office of the coroner is obsolete and, since its very beginning in the 12th century, has been political and corrupt. Nothing has changed since then. Furthermore, until very recently, with the deployment of the Electronic Death Registry system in New York State, recordkeeping documenting coroners’ activities and cases was deplorable.

Lorin Marra writes:

Also legislation has just passed that requires coroners to have more training.

We Responded:

The only legislation that we are interested in is legislation to eliminate the office of the coroner and replace it with a competitive system that would employ specially trained medicolegal personnel for death investigations. Those professional death investigators may be assisted by a subordinate assistant with appropriate training. The current coroner system is inadequate, unqualified, ignorant, and obsolete. If that’s not enough reason to eliminate it, please add to that list the fact that it is politically tainted and corrupt.

Lorin Marra writes:

Please do your research next time.

We Responded:

We did extensive research for the article and stand by our facts as written and represented. We do suggest, however, that you be tested for dyslexia as soon as possible by a qualified professional. Your reading comprehension or your cognitive processing appears to be severely impaired.


Coroner’s Office Just as Dead

If you’ve made it this far, you deserve a bit of humor and entertainment. Here’s one of our favorite scenes from Monty Python’s In Search of the Holy Grail. Enjoy!

Obviously, Ms Marra was not interested in the facts and figures we very conscientiously researched and published in our article; instead, she was more interested in demonstrating her inability to read the English language. If her dyslexia is shared by Paul Marra, Albany County Coroner, it’s no wonder that their records and available information is so scanty and incomplete. The fact that Ms Marra came up with figures that the Albany County Coroner’s Office couldn’t produce does shed some light on the fact that either Ms Marra’s figures are phoney or the Albany County Coroner’s Office doesn’t want to share some embarrassing information with the public, or the information is simply unavailable because of the Albany County coroners’ poor record keeping practices. Maybe the answer is “all of the above.”

The fact is, our information is good as 24 karat gold. All of it comes from reliable sources. The fact that Albany County has poor record keeping practices and the County doesn’t consider it important enough to update their software is a problem voters might want to address. The fact that Schenectady County (medical examiner’s office) and Greene County (coroners) dragged their feet for months and only produced a fistful of information or no information at all, or just excuses made by the county attorney, is at the very least a black eye for those counties. The Rensselaer county attorney should be brought up on charges for refusing to provide any information on the Rensselaer County Medical Examiner’s office. If that’s democracy at work and freedom of information…

Make Your Vote Count!
Big Choice! They’re All Dems!!!
Be Informed!

Demand Accountability

P.s. If you’re interested in the current candidates for coroner this time around, don’t be surprised that they’re all Democrats, you can go to the Vote411 site. Click here.

Here’s some additional information on medicolegal death investigators. According to the ABMDI, The American Board of Medicolegal Death Investigators, FAQs page, the medicolegal death investigator doesn’t need any special training or education.

  1. What is a Medicolegal Death Investigator?
    The role of the medicolegal death investigator is to investigate any death that falls under the jurisdiction of the medical examiner or coroner, including all suspicious, violent, unexplained and unexpected deaths. The medicolegal death investigator is responsible for the dead person, whereas the local law enforcement jurisdiction is responsible for the scene. The medicolegal death investigator performs scene investigations emphasizing information developed from the decedent and determines the extent to which further investigation is necessary. Medicolegal death investigators should have a combination of education and skills encompassing areas of medicine and law.
  2. Who can become a Medicolegal Death Investigator?
    There are no formal requirements to become a medicolegal death investigator. Each coroner and medical examiner office has different hiring practices. A medicolegal death investigator must be knowledgeable of local, state and federal laws. In addition, a medicolegal death investigator must be the most medically knowledgeable person at the scene of the crime to determine if further investigation is necessary.
  3. Do I have to have a degree?
    There are no formal educational requirements specifically for medicolegal death investigation. Any degree program dealing with Forensic Science, Natural science, Anthropology, Nursing, or any other medically related field would be useful. There are several established training courses available throughout the country that teach the basic information needed in order to perform a thorough, competent medicolegal death investigation.
  4. How much money will I make as a Medicolegal Death Investigator?
    An investigator’s salary will be determined by the jurisdiction and amount of experience the medicolegal death investigator has. Salaries and benefits vary throughout the United States.

[Source ABMDI FAQ page, http://www.abmdi.org/faq, last accessed on October 9, 2017]

Bottom Line: There are no special education requirements or degree requirements to be a so-called “medicolegal death investigator.” But the fact that “a medicolegal death investigator must be the most medically knowledgeable person at the scene of the crime” is very disturbing because most funeral directors have only a two-year degree in mortuary science, and that degree has very little to do with any “medical knowledge.” Furthermore, a degree in mortuary science or, more accurately, in funeral home operations, is not generally considered a medically related field.

Now doesn’t that information make you feel more comfortable about who is making decisions about a human being’s death at a possible crime scene?

 

Hello. County Coroner? We’ve got a body here.
[Ha, ha, ha!]

 
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Posted by on October 8, 2017 in Abuse of Public Office, Albany, Albany County Coroner, Albany County Coroners Office, Albany County District Attorney, Albany County Executive, Albany County Supervisor, Albany Mayor, Arthur Fitch, Babcock Funeral Home, Benjamin Sturges, Bill Loetterle, Bob Freeman, Bring out your dead, Bureau of Funeral Directing, Capital District, Charles Smoot, Conflict of Interest, County & Municipal Employees, County Legislator, Dan McCoy, Daniel McCoy, Death, Death Awareness, Death care, Death Certificate, Death Education, Death Investigation, Deathcare, Democrap, Democrats, Dick Touchette, Dignity Memorial, Elected Official, Elections and Voting, F.O.I.L., Favoritism, Francis Simmons, Frank Commisso, Frank Simmons, Freedom of Information Law, Funeral, Funeral Home, Greene County, Greene County Attorney, Greene County Coroner, Greene County District Attorney, Greene County Sheriff, Hudson Valley, Human Service, Hypocrisy, Investigation, Jack Flynn, James Cavanaugh, Joe Stanzione, Joseph Stanzione, Kristin Gillibrand, Lorin Marra, Magin & Keegan Funeral Home, Marra Funeral Home, McLoughlin & Mason Funeral Home, Monitoring, Nepotism, New York State Funeral Directors Association, Newcomer Funeral Home, Newcomer Funeral Services Group, Newcomer Funerals and Cremations, Nicholas J. Facci, Nick Facci, Nick Facci Facebook, NYSDOH, NYSFDA, Office of the Professions, Paul Marra, Professional Ethics, Public Office, Rahmar Lockeridge, Ren Newcomer, Rennselaer County Attorney, Rensselaer County, Rensselaer County Medical Examiner, Richard Touchette, Rick Touchette, Robert J. Freeman, Schenectady County, Schenectady County Medical Examiner, Service Corporation International, Shame On You, Transparency, William Loetterle