Letters to the Editor Monday, October 10 – From readers in Schenectady, Niskayuna


City must justify proposed fee hikes

A fee by any other name is a tax. What matters to Schenectady homeowners is how much will it cost this year to stay in their home.
Once again, as it was just two short years ago, Mayor Gary McCarthy is proposing a hike in the waste collection fee along with smaller increases in water and sewer fees.
While the general tax line remains flat, these proposed increases that come when inflation is running rampant will make it more difficult for some, especially seniors like myself to make ends meet.
The waste fund two years ago was flush to the tune of over $3.2 million, and while the council halved the 22% fee hike it still did not appear to be justified.
Now the mayor is acting like a television pitch man selling life insurance, breaking down the cost to $1 a week or $52 a year.
I will again charge the City Council to ask for the numbers over the last five years, including pickup and disposal tonnage, and cost per ton per year.
Also ask for the amount we are charging the village of Scotia to do their waste collection.
Why does it appear the waste fee hikes always fall on the backs of 1-, 2- and 3-family homes and not commercials and contracted collections?
The employee raises are very well deserved, but this coming year’s increase appears to cover much more than that.
The key word here is justification, please ask for it.
Vince Riggi

To save democracy, vote Republican

Walter Cronkite once said: “I think being a liberal, in the true sense, is being nondoctrinaire… non-committed to a cause — but examining each case on its merits.”
Today’s liberals (Democrats) no longer bother to create even the illusion of the distinguished journalist’s definition. The list of “acceptables” allowed into their small and tightly controlled [tent] shrinks with each passing week.
First, conservatives, Republicans, MAGAs, people with conventional religious values simply need not apply.
You won’t be heard above the donkeys’ shrill and churlish schoolgirl whining.
Then, the great unwashed are thrown into the basket of deplorables and whisked out of “The Vineyard” (courtesy of NIMBY).
Democrat are no longer the party that stood up for free speech, the freedom to think, to debate, to dialogue; no longer the party of Dr. Martin Luther King who said, “Once you throw the first rock … steal a TV, you’re no longer a protestor. You are a criminal.” They now disavow and disparage these cornerstones of democracy at every turn. The party that once decried violence, now applauds it (BLM and pro-abortion advocates).
If you want a return to freedom of thought, freedom of expression, respect for the rule of law, if you rightfully fear for the future of our republican democracy, you must feel duty bound to vote Republican in the midterm elections.
Anything less than Republican control of both Houses of Congress, statehouses, and city halls will ensure continued violence on our city streets, sheer folly in our schools and economic collapse.
Frank J. Ciervo


Categories: Letters to the Editor, Opinion, Schenectady, Your Niskayuna



Questions for Mr. Ciervo:

You consider the Democratic party unfair because it doesn’t welcome MAGA supporters. Do you think Trump’s Republican party welcomes progressives? Should people not join the political party that they think shares their ideology and views on important issues?

Is it “nicer” to call your political opponents “shrill and churlish schoolgirl(s)” rather than deplorable? Have you ever listed to the names Trump and his supporters use in reference to their political “enemies?

Are you aware that it was Governor DeSantis who flew the Salvadoran refugees you refer to, by making false promises to them, to Martha’s Vineyard? Did you know that the citizens of Martha’s Vineyard welcomed the refugees, fed and sheltered them, and helped them reach the places they actually wanted to go?

Could you give me any examples of Democrats supporting violence? Have you ever heard of January 6? Did you know that Trump has promised to pardon all those convicted of crimes on January 6 if he becomes president again? Can you explain why many Republicans initially condemned the 1/6 insurrection as a false flag operation that involved antifa?


I forgot to ask if Mr. Ciervo believes the Republicans in Congress who now claim the 1/6 insurrectionists were tourists or, for the most part, exercising their constitutional right to assemble peacefully to petition the government? Have you listened to any of the January 6 committee reports? If you haven’t, tune in this Thursday and get back to us.

geri krawitz

the republicans welcome law abiding people of all colors religions and persuassions. they do not want 4 million illegals but 4 million legals they do not want a goverment that is stupid as is this administration. they want a goverment that protects all citizens from crime corruption and inflation. why does no one in the democratic party ever talk about the money the big guy and family made from ukraine russia and china lets discuss


It is your idea, begin the discussion; I will not begin a discussion that I see as based on erroneous statements and false, vapid accusations.

geri krawitz

sir: every letter you reply to has the same faulty knowledge. first you never have any real evidence of when things were said and by whom. second you never acknowledge the deplorable actions by the dems. it does not bother you that inflation is highest in forty years that crime is up 30 to 50% everywhere. that so many americans live in poverty but we have let in 4 million more to be taken care of by middle income working american taxes. what are the dems running on repealing crimes for marijuana okay but first take care of our dwindling economy shortages crime and excessive monies made by the president and members of congress what is kamala or anyone in power doing about the border

William Marincic

Yes, sir, we welcome democrats and progressives into the Republican party, you should know this as 10s of thousands are leaving your party for the GOP. Even the Presidential candidate that all of the liberal news people were gushing about is leaving the democrat party. Everything with you people is Trump and January 6, once we take over in January the truth will come out about both along with the crooked DOJ, FBI, and the Biden family. Hang on, it’s going to get rough.

Mr. Ciervo, I believe you completely missed what Mr. Cronkite had to say. Your included sermon fails to show you understood a word of it.
Walter Cronkite, 1973:

“I think being a liberal, in the true sense, is being nondoctrinaire, nondogmatic, non-committed to a cause – but examining each case on its merits. Being left of center is another thing; it’s a political position. I think most newspapermen by definition have to be liberal; if they’re not liberal, by my definition of it, then they can hardly be good newspapermen. If they’re preordained dogmatists for a cause, then they can’t be very good journalists; that is, if they carry it into their journalism.”

christophe Stalka

Jan 6th will and it’s ongoing bad comedy of lies and deceit remains my defining moment for the upcoming Election.inflation high gas prices the rise of a tyrant in Russia the US will overcome these challenges just as we did Jan 6th.some here are disappointed in our achievements I say wake up and be thankful for what you have stumble out of that fog

Mr. Ciervo I find your letter very flawed with incomplete references. All people are welcome to join the Democrat Party. They are the Party of inclusion and diversity. If you look at the Republican Party makeup it’s 90 % Non Hispanic White. Why would anyone want a MAGA in the Democratic party? They don’t stand for the Democrat Values. They stand for Republicans values (whatever they are) and would be there for disruptions. No one is being drowned out. Their 1st amendment right is still intact. as shown here in this forum, As Mr. Santos said you let out any reference to Jan, 6th ….something no one should ignore.

It’s very clear Mr. Ciervo has no clue as to what’s going on. The party of hate, violence and white supremacy is the republicans

Steven Flynn

Mr. Cuervo most certainly has a clue what’s going on, it’s his world and he’s living in it. Kudos to that. I’ve noticed the same cast of characters disagree with pretty much anything a conservative writes on here. Their minds are made up and there is no other way than the one they describe. The ultimate solution is to get out and vote for what you believe in and not be dissuaded by a few people who you’ve never met in your life. This column will always be a ping pong match that goes on for infinity. So what is the “real truth”? The real truth is to stick to your principles and feel proud to be an American. Let the name calling and snide references fall on deaf ears and do what u feel is right for you.


Sticking to the truth when the truth has been clearly established is at least as important as “stick(ing) to your principles”.. For example, Trump has said that he declassified the documents that he had taken to Mar-a-Lago illegally. He has also claimed that they were planted by the FBI. The two explanations are conflicting and no evidence has been presented to support either. He stands by his claim that the 2020 election was stolen though his attorney-general and many judges he appointed have said this is not so. He is supported by Qanon members, some with seats in Congress, who are clearly detached from reality. Principles should be based on clear truth as well as ideology.

Steven Flynn

…..and you have extreme liberals in congress who are openly anti-semite. We can play this back and forth game all day, its a dead end street.

It’s been clearly established one political party accepted the assistance of a foreign government, our primary adversary, in their campaign for the Presidency. It’s also been clearly established that armed thousands, at the behest of the losing President, attacked our Capitol in the midst of certifying our elections in an attempt to short circuit that process and assassinate the Vice President for doing so. It’s also plainly obvious that, for whatever reason, that losing President continues to foment insurrection against our government.
Your turn…


It is not a game. Our future is at stake. I condemn racism and antisemitism and realize that they appear on the extreme right and left of the political spectrum. However, I suggest you read “American Psychosis” by David Corn to find out how often antisemitism and racism have poisoned the modern American Republican party. From Goldwater through Reagan, and the Bush presidents the party has quietly and openly used extremists, bigots, and fear mongers to gain power. Under Trump, the extremists, bigots, authoritarians and seriously deranged have taken control and are using the party to achieve total control over the United States, with the goal of turning it into a fascist Christian dictatorship. Of course, genuine Christians, those who take the eight beatitudes seriously, for example, will not be fooled by this abuse of their religion.

I would respect ones comments if they were based on factual complete information. I would also respect a person’s opinion if he/she simply said “I like Trump no matter what he says or does”…All these wasted words are unnecessary if that was simply stated. At this point 7 years down the road even Jesus Christ calling down to them wouldn’t change their minds about Trump

Steven Flynn

Yes yes, one party is evil and the other is pure and moral. If you believe that I have a bridge to sell you. We’ll see what the American people have to say in approx 30 days. If the Dems keep control, then we’ll know that the American people have bought into what Biden is selling. If they don’t, then we’ll know that the American people sees what I see, and it’ll be a stop to Biden’s policies. Personally, I think it’ll come down to the economy more than any other issue. The Dems got a boost when the Court decided to overturn Roe, it’s made the swing state races extremely close. It just might come down to the TV doctor and the hoody guy. Yikes.

Personally I, and I firmly believe millions of Americans, think it’ll come down to which party wants to continue as a country run under democratic principles. Because one party has shown they don’t much care about that. And I also firmly believe there’s a strong number of Republicans and independents who remember the days of sanity and either will cross lines in rejection of your leader, or just stay home.

Audits conducted in Arizona after the 2020 elections showed conclusively that roughly 50,000 registered Republican voters voted the Republican Party line, but did not vote for a President.

The Republicans can throw all manner of strawmen and red herrings up with all manner of drama and distraction, all invented and planted by Donald Trump, but the Trump Republicans have shown their true colors, and it runs profoundly opposed to this country’s values. And I don’t think anything else matters right now.

Ignatious P. Reilly

Chuck as you seem to be in the know, what exactly ARE this countries values? I have been trying to figure it out and I am not afraid to say I don’t know. So, enlighten me, if it’s not too much trouble.

Ignatious P. Reilly

What’s it reveal Chuck? That you have All Life’s Answers but won’t share? How typically liberal of you. As for you Guy, I am surprised you could spell Confederacy, I know you certainly haven’t read the book, and Anthony I am surprised that you jump on the bandwagon with nothing of value, normally, although I oppose your views out of hand, you have something intelligent to say. Again I ask you liberal “thinkers” what are the values? Your valuable knowledge, once revealed, might sway some peoples views.


Freedom of religion (and from religion) and separation of Church and State came to mind immediately when I read your request to Chuck.

Ignatious P. Reilly

OK, I agree with that, Anthony. I guess I don’t AKWAYS oppose your views.


I don’t recall any comment claiming the Democratic party is “pure and moral.” I do know that Republicans are quick to criticize Democrats for name-calling even though the insults, accusations, and claims of conspiracy come, for the most part, from Republicans. Republicans have made a home for the likes of Joe McCarthy, Robert Welch (founder of the John Birch Society), David Duke, Marjorie Taylor Greene, Laura Boebert, Michael Flynn, Mike Lindell, members of Qanon, Donald Trump and on and on and on…

Ignatious P. Reilly

This again, I agree completely. However, the Democrats are every bit as bad, if not worse, in other ways. For instance. The racial problems we have in this country are partially if not completely due to the democratic party insinuating to the black community that they are not capable to survive without the help of mommy government. This absolute falsehood is repeatedly pounded into the heads of blacks, complete with ‘you aren’t smart enough (also completely untrue) so here’s 10 points’ etc. etc. etc., and has been since forever by the democratic party. The democratic party is responsible for this country being overrun with illegal aliens, a good portion of whom are violent criminals. The democratic party is responsible for the massive propogation of the left wing bias of the media. The democratic party is responsible for your ridiculously high taxes and outrageous fees, ridiculous gun laws, inflation, I could go on and on but what’s the point, you already know this. The country is so over the cliff, maybe the answer is two USAs. USAD and USAR. I do not see a point the two can ever come together, and people should not have to live in a “free” country where they are pitted against each other by a vile media and even more vile system of government.

William Marincic

The truth like “take the vaccine and save granny”? Phiser came out yesterday in the UK and said that the vaccine was not tested for stopping the spread, how many people took the vaccine and went and killed granny? The lies of this administration have killed how many, the lies of your God Faucci killed how many people?

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