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abstinence-centered education Christianity Family Breakdown Marriage Politics School Boards Sexual Abstinence Sexual Ethics

#171-Jack Hefestay on the Root Cause of Societal Decline

Jack Hefestay and Richard discuss the root cause of societal decline, the breakdown of the family. Richard presents a practical plan to tackle this issue.
Jack and Richard discuss the current dynamic of discussing God in the public square.

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Freedom of Speech Politics Presidential Politics

#149-Our Nation Is at an Inflection Point

Many events happened on February 16th, 2024, including the $400 million plus judgement against President Trump that show that this is an inflection point.  Find out about these events and where we are headed and what is needed.

Mentioned in the podcast:

https://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2024/02/14/shellenberger_missing_classified_binder_proving_obama_weaponized_five_eyes_allies_to_launch_trump-russia_allegations_could_have_been_reason_for_fbi_mar-a-lago_raid.html

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Environment Politics West Virginia Politics

#147-Stop the Prosecution of Commissioners Krouse and Jackson

Jefferson County WV Commissioners Krouse and Jackson are being prosecuted by County Prosecutor Matt Harvey because of their work stoppage in protest of the railroading of industrial solar farms in Jefferson County WV. Since Krouse and Jackson have already returned to work, Harvey should drop the petition to remove the Commissioners, unless he wants to join the likes of Fani Willis, Alvin Bragg and Jack Smith, prosecutors in President Trump’s cases.

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Ethical Business Politics Solar Development

Open Letter to Prosecutor Matt Harvey re Jackson & Krouse

December 13, 2023

Matt Harvey
Jefferson County Prosecuting Attorney
P.O. Box 729
Charles Town WV 25414

Dear Prosecutor Harvey,

This is an open letter to question and analyze why you are continuing with the petition to remove my local Commissioner, Tricia Jackson, as well as my Commissioner Jennifer Krouse.

Ostensibly, your action was to compel Jackson and Krouse to return to work.  Now that they have returned to work, why have you not dropped this petition?

Is it your job to determine who the rightfully elected representatives of Jefferson County residents are?  No, it is not.  That is the job of the voters.  I, as a voter, do not want Commissioner Jackson and Commissioner Krouse removed.  Also, you bring charges against Jackson and Krouse as if they have committed some crime, when in fact their actions were a protest against corrupt activities by a government official.  Would not the normal order of business be for a crime to have occurred, and then for a jury of peers to decide if that is indeed the case?  The Constitution provides for a clear separation of powers.  Voters should decide about matters regarding elected officials.  Yet, without any criminal activity occurring, you are seeking to remove my elected officials from office.  This is wrong.

It is also very ironic that the person who is the instigating cause for the protest action of Jackson and Krouse is actually the person who has huge conflicts of interest.  Even if they do not rise to the legal definition of a crime, which as we know, is open to interpretation, they still certainly are conflicts of interest.  These conflicts of interest affect the welfare and well-being of all citizens of Jefferson County.  Should not this be acknowledged and probed further to see if the financial interest of Stolipher in solar development is self-dealing that causes harm to the citizens of Jefferson County?

In your petition, you cover extensively how Jackson and Krouse are only thinking about their own agenda.  However, that is false.  They are thinking about the well-being of the whole county and its residents, not just a select few people.

One thing you do not mention at all in your petition, is the main reason that the entire situation came about to begin with.  That one thing is the railroading of industrial solar development in Jefferson County by Steve Stolipher and his cronies.  The main action that is behind this whole situation are Stolipher’s refusal to put discussion of the Solar Text Amendment on the County Commission Agenda.  No doubt, Stolipher, was not happy with the removal of the Solar Text Amendment by Jackson and Krouse’s votes on September 7, 2023.

One point that you should be investigated is the huge conflicts of interest that Stolipher undeniably has.  Whether some ethics committee panel decides that conflicts of interest rise to their interpretation of being legally acceptable, they are still conflicts of interest.  To give a current example, President Biden continues to say that he has no conflicts of interest regarding his decision making process.  Yet it is an incontrovertible fact that he has many conflicts of interest with regards to payments to his family from foreign entities in Ukraine, China and other locations.

Stolipher has multiple conflicts of interest regarding solar development.  First, as a real estate agent, he makes commissions off of the sale or leasing of properties.  Since solar farm leases are for up to 35 years, this will be a substantial amount.  For example, if the real estate agent negotiating the $15,600,000 35 year lease for the Wild Hill Solar project hypothetically received just a 3% commission, that would amount to $468,000.  

The current Comprehensive Plan specifies preserving the rural nature of Jefferson County, and does not support industrial scale solar farms on rural lands.  County Judge Deborah McLaughlin expressed this in striking down the April 21, 2021 Comprehensive Plan text amendment.  By lobbying during the 2022 Legislative Session for HB 4553, Stolipher is supporting state legislation that attempts to skirt local zoning regulations by allowing solar farms in any zoning district anywhere in the state as a matter of right.  This is in direct contradiction to his responsibility as a County Commissioner to represent the best interests of all of his constituents, not just a handful of large landowners and farmers. In other words, this lobbying is self-dealing.

In conclusion, I urge you to drop the petition attempting to remove County Commissioners Jackson and Krouse.  They have been looking out for the best interests of all of the citizens in Jefferson County.  If voters want to remove Jackson and Krouse they will decide that issue at the ballot box at their next reelection. 

Sincerely,

Richard Urban
Shannondale
Harpers Ferry, WV

Categories
Environment Politics West Virginia Politics

#146-Solar Farms Cause Esthetic & Environmental Damage to Jefferson County WV

Industrial scale solar farms are not in alignment with Jefferson County WV’s Comprehensive Plan. Furthermore, they are causing environmental damage and ruining fertile farmland. The idea that the under construction Blake solar project and proposed solar farms are providing vital income for struggling farmers is complete BS.

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Civil Liberties Politics

#144-Are We a Police State?

The FBI is breaking down the doors of pro-life protestors and those who were at or in the US Capitol on January 6th. Police State, Dinesh D’Sousa’s latest film is a must see. Watch to get a better insight into the Police State and to take a clear stand for goodness.

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Environment Ethical Business Politics West Virginia Politics

#143-Conflicts of Interest Corrupt Our Government

Local government officials, including Jefferson County West Virginia County Commission Chair Steve Stolipher, have conflicts of interest regarding the promotion of Solar Farms. These conflicts of interest are harmful to local citizens.
More broadly, self enrichment by government officials is a serious problem.
Transparency must be demanded, and government officials must realize that they are the servants of their constituents.

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Environment Politics

Kudos to Krouse and Jackson for repealing the solar farm ordinance

This Independent Voice column appeared in the Spirit Of Jefferson on September 20, 2023

The Blake Solar Project, adjacent to St. James the Greater Catholic Church and the new Kings Crossing sub- division, is under construction. This 516-acre project fundamentally changes the rural, pastoral atmosphere of the area. Solar farms are an industrial use of property and should be required to be located in areas zoned for either light or heavy industry, such as the Bardane industrial park area. Just because someone owns a property does not mean that they can use it for an industrial type of use.

Another major concern is the environmental impact of solar farms. Formerly fertile farmland is stripped bare to install solar panels. Without proper ground cover, runoff becomes a major concern, with sedimentation of the nearby Shenandoah River, for example, becoming a possibility.

In Louisa County, Virginia, the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality has fined provider Dominion Power $50,700 for erosion and runoff problems on an 1,100-acre project. In central and southwest Virginia, Energix was fined $97,651 for various violations including erosion problems.

According to Roanoke.com, “At the Appomattox facility, inspectors found that ‘many areas around the site, particularly under the solar arrays, were denuded and stabilization had not been applied,’ the consent order states. Run- off had created gullies and maintenance was needed on silt fences, check dams and other erosion control devices at the Leatherwood operation in Henry County, which in 2021 became Appalachian Power’s first utility-scale solar farm.”

In Essex County, Virginia, a consent order for $9,100 in fines was proposed for the 200-acre Coronal Power solar facility, which also experienced severe erosion and runoff problems.

Also consider that it is cloudy, on average, about 55 percent of the time here in the Eastern Panhandle. Solar panels produce only about 10 percent to 30 percent of their full capacity on cloudy days. This makes West Virginia a questionable location for utility-scale solar projects. For example, in Nevada, there are, on average, 73 per- cent more sunny days than in West Virginia.

Then there is the issue of disposing of the solar panels when their lifecycle ends in 25 to 35 years. The panels may contain arsenic, cadmium, lead and selenium that should not be disposed of at local dumps.

In an Op-Ed in the Aug. 9 issue of The Spirit of Jefferson, Richard Zigler, one of the property owners of the proposed Wild Hill Solar Project argues that, “Commercial solar facilities are passive in their effects on the communities in which they are installed.” Ziegler also claims that “environmental issues are not an issue.” Based on the above observations, this statement is flat out false.

Another factor is that food production is an important necessity for the continuation of society. Eliminating more and more productive farmland or forest land is a bad policy for long-term sustenance of society. Although some farmland will be developed into subdivisions, it is on nowhere near the scale of the proposed or already under construction solar farms.

According to Rexa Kameli and Sun Shen of the Virginia Coastal Policy Center at the College of William & Mary Law School, authors of the report “Developing Solar Energy in Rural Virginia: An Analysis of Legal, Environ- mental and Policy Issues” (2022),

“To avoid disturbing prime forested and agricultural lands, solar developers and localities should consider siting new solar projects on degraded lands or ‘brownfields,’ such as former industrial sites, landfills or mined areas, provided appropriate environmental controls are in place to mitigate adverse effects. Additionally, distributed solar is another option that could be explored more in Virginia to ease the pressure to develop large solar facilities in rural communities.”

The Jefferson County Commission should work to stop the construction of the proposed solar projects that have not yet begun construction, as well as any future utility-scale solar projects that are not located in industrially zoned areas. We should learn from the costly mistakes of other rural counties.

Categories
Civil Liberties Medical Freedom Politics Vaccine Choice

#128-Huge Win For Parental Rights-Court Mandates Religious Vaccination Exemptions in Mississippi

ICAN wins a huge victory for parents and children in Mississippi and soon, the five other states that mandate vaccinations for school attendance.

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Christianity Marriage Politics Rev. Sun Myung Moon Sexual Abstinence Sexual Ethics Unificationism

#124-Richard Urban-Solving Today’s Problems with a God-centered and Abstinence-Centered Worldview

    God must come first for any solution to the world’s problems to happen.  Furthermore, Richard discusses how the Unification Principle, revealed by Rev. Sun Myung Moon, presents a Biblical worldview with additional insight and understanding.  
    A core understanding is that The Human Fall involved a premature sexual relationship.  This understanding helps us to understand the world’s problems, and specifically the rampant sexual confusion and corruption.

The Strengthening Families and Communities Forum is part of the Peaceful Families; Peaceful World workshop, sponsored by Visionroot.

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