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Second Letter to Candidate Josh Feldman

Dear Josh,

Congratulations, you did maintain your position on the ballot after our challenge. But you have traded away your credibility and integrity in the process.

I read the courtroom transcript of your March 17, 2017 testimony, and on page five you stated under oath that you consciously falsely signed two affidavits. Even though you have only been an active attorney for a grand total of 78 days, surely you know that affidavits are the bedrock of our legal system. A falsified affidavit undermines everything our legal system stands on and stands for. The person who falsifies an affidavit is obviously unqualified to fill a judicial role. You are unqualified, Josh. Your own court testimony impeached your own credibility.

Additionally, you have run for this magisterial seat on the representation of being “the only attorney” among the candidates. But you only became an active licensed attorney on March 2, 2017, the day before you filed your first set of ballot petitions. On page three of your court testimony, you admit that you do not actually practice law and have no court room experience, having become “inactive” just one month after bar admission and having been “retired” from 2010 until this March 2nd.

Your attorney information page on the Disciplinary Board of the Pennsylvania Supreme Court says “I do not maintain professional liability insurance because I do not have private clients and have no possible exposure to possible malpractice actions.”

So your biggest selling point is actually flim-flam, a faint technicality. What is the point of electing an attorney who has no experience actually being an attorney, and who right out of the gate violates the most important election laws to try to get ahead?

Josh, how on earth could your lawyer have allowed you to take the stand in your own defense at the ballot petition hearing?  Do you not realize the self-damning testimony you gave in court?

Perhaps no one should be surprised, as your incompetent goofball lawyer Adam Klein now has yet one more loss to his credit.  You have learned an expensive but important lesson: Just because a lawyer is smug and arrogant does not mean he is seriously up to the task of effectively representing you.

Josh, I pledged $250 toward the outcome not as some sort of silly bet or wager, but as a principled statement about my belief in personal accountability.  My philosophy of government requires me to do this: I had put my name out there as a plaintiff in a formal complaint about your ballot petitions, and you stayed on the ballot. In that process we learned that you have poor character, your word means nothing, and you have greatly over-represented your qualifications.

So, Josh, you do get the enclosed $250 check, but you will get no apology from me, because when you took the stand in court you admitted to filing false affidavits on your ballot petitions. You impeached your own credibility.  If you cannot be trusted to file basic honest paperwork, then what do the voters expect of you if you become a magistrate and sit in judgment of us?  Your petitions were flawed, Josh, and remain so, even though they technically contained enough signatures to keep you cross-filed and on the ballot.

This whole experience is sad to me. You have hurt yourself through your own over-reach, and then you were further injured by poor legal counsel. I like the fact that you are a fellow small business owner, and I wish that you had earnestly run for office on that good qualification alone. People could respect you for that.



Josh First

Harrisburg City, PA

May 12, 2017

Harrisburg’s Mayoral Race: Not Even One Lesser of Many Evils

Here in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, we are cursed with the single-party dominance that is the bane of nearly every other American city.

The lack of political competition means that voters and citizens are offered few choices, and a very narrow band of philosophical differences to choose from.

Like most other American cities, Harrisburg is dysfunctional, broke, mostly black, and run by the Democrat Party. American blacks vote overwhelmingly for Democrats and the corrupt special interest groups that hover about them, like the teacher’s unions.

Until American blacks start asking themselves why they keep voting for the failure and poverty that the Democrat Party has afflicted them with since the days of Southern slavery and Jim Crow, these cities will remain in their broken status.

Even state capital cities like Harrisburg. Our city’s school district is the worst in Pennsylvania, because it is dominated by the teacher’s unions. With bad schools, would-be taxpayers flee to school districts where they get something positive for their property taxes. And where their kids are more likely to get a decent education.

And to be fair, while you are more likely see better financial success in a conservative-run city, the fact is that cities dominated by a single party of any sort become playgrounds for careerists and corruption.

So here we are, with Eric Papenfuse as our current mayor.

Eric’s big claim to fame is that he graduated from Yale University. Seriously, I am not joking. Eric uses that assertion as if it is the beginning and dramatic ending of any policy discussion. It is as if he is stating “I am simply smarter than you, because I went to Yale, so discussion is over.”

Yale is like all the other Ivy league schools: Utterly worthless. Yale’s Politically Correct indoctrination has dumbed down students, not made them smarter. The liberal Borg mentality brooks no questioning, no competition.

As a human, if you do not question, then you do not develop critical thinking skills. Simply being “right” on a long list of leftist talking points does not make a person smart. It makes them intellectually inferior, even disabled. I believe this is why so many liberals get crazy mad when they are debated – they simply lack the ability to logically, calmly debate.

I will always give credit where it is due, however, and even sweaty faced Papenfuse has some achievements under his belt.

By withholding expenditures, the city now has some money. And some departments are actually functioning for the first time in a long time, like trash pickup and public street sewers.

Eric’s main political ally, Alex Hartzler, has felt comfortable enough to continue to make risky, low-yield redevelopment investments in bombed out ghettos. This generates new home sales and a new tax base, a sense of security and community. The private market can work, if allowed to work.

Laugh at these small accomplishments if you will, Harrisburg was on a trajectory to become another Detroit.

And to be fair, being the Harrisburg mayor is probably an unwinnable job, regardless of party or of personal charisma. It just may be one of those roles that in the current environment cannot be done well by anyone. The constraints are tight, the flexibility is low, and the wildcard variables are numerous.

A fractious and unimpressive city council does not help, either.

So it makes sense to make no predictions or endorsements in this race.

Even with six or seven mayoral candidates to choose from, it doesn’t appear that we even have a lesser-of-two-evils to choose from. They are all disasters.

Papenfuse has his hands full with city council member Gloria Martin, who may win simply because of  identity politics. If she wins, we may go forward, we may go backwards.

It is doubtful anyone could tell the difference.


May 11, 2017 UPDATE: Jennie Jenkins has been recommended as a strong mayoral candidate by someone whom I and many other Harrisburg City voters look to for guidance and leadership.

May 14th UPDATE:  I learned Jennie Jenkins is a former city police officer. Great! Who was apparently fired or dismissed or who voluntarily left the police force because she was accused of stealing $350 from a police benevolent association fund. She’s suing various city leaders over this and says all charges were dropped. Patriot News reporters say almost all the charges were dropped, except one light misdemeanor that included no admission of guilt, repayment of whatever sum got misplaced, and ARD. Like I said above, the list of mayoral candidates is not super strong.

May 14th UPDATE: Mayoral candidate Anthony Harrell describes himself as a patriotic Iraq war veteran (thank you for your service, Anthony) who supports Second Amendment rights. His writeup in the recent print version of the Patriot News is the first I’ve heard of him. Definitely the kind of candidate Harrisburg needs. But no one knows he’s a candidate, except him.

May 14th UPDATE: After previously waging jihad against and attempting a political suicide attack on the Harrisburg Civil War Museum that caused city residents to shake our heads in mystified disbelief, Eric Papenfuse now says the place he wanted to bomb into rubble is actually “a valuable city resource.”  Uhhhhh, OK. Like we all know, the list of Harrisburg mayoral candidates is pretty weak. This is the best we’ve got….



Letter to Candidate Josh Feldman

Dear Josh Feldman,

It brought me no pleasure of any sort when I became the plaintiff in a court challenge against your Republican ballot petitions for the local Magistrate job here in Uptown Harrisburg several days ago.

The magistrate seat is currently held by Judge Barb Pianka, and she is seeking re-election. You are a declared candidate seeking to unseat Pianka, as you have a right to do as an American citizen. In fact, as an aside, I am glad you are running, in the sense that I think more people ought to run for all elected offices. Additionally, I am totally opposed to the current ballot petition process, because it artificially and unfairly favors incumbents and establishment political parties and their political machines, which works against individual citizens and against the collective interest of We The People, the citizenry.

America needs fewer career politicians, fewer elected officials who are simply owned by special interests who use government for their own personal/ private enrichment, and we need more solid citizens who view elected office as a temporary public service to their fellow citizens, not as a taxpayer-funded career.

So, in that broad, philosophical sense, I support your run for office.

And, I must accept and work with the specific ballot petition process as it is now, not as I wish it were (not).

Josh, you are challenging a judge whom I and many others in this area hold in good regard. Judge Pianka has not only done a good job, she has also not done the bad things that normally earn a sitting official a strong challenge. For example, no one has accused Judge Pianka of taking bribes, falling asleep in the court room, abusing people in her court room, malpractice, erratic behavior, or other typically disqualifying actions. Had she done any of that, you would probably have my emphatic support, or at least my tacit support, depending on other candidates in the race.

Uptown Harrisburg is an oasis, and Midtown Harrisburg is becoming an oasis through continued investment and re-development. By oasis I mean these places are locations with bona fide residential taxpayers, businesses, relatively low crime, and a good quality of life, as opposed to a greater proportion of the city proper. Judge Barb Pianka is to a fair degree responsible for this status, because of her measured judicial approach in this district. So losing Judge Pianka could lead to a loss of stability and quality of life in these areas. Too many of us have homes and investments here to justify risking a change with a new, unproven magistrate.

Thus, I support Judge Pianka and will continue to support her until she develops a fatal flaw or faces a superior candidate. Neither of those conditions are in play now.

I am a Republican plaintiff complaining about your Republican (cross-filed) ballot petitions because as I have come to understand, those petitions are deeply flawed. I signed as a plaintiff with that understanding. If, in the course of the unfolding legal proceeding, your petitions are determined to be not faulty and are acceptable, then I will do the two following things: First, I will issue you a public apology. Though I am acting as plaintiff in good faith, I believe in taking responsibility for my mistakes. Second, I will contribute $250.00 toward your legal fees incurred while defending your petitions.

After all of this is settled one way or another, Josh, I hope that you will become more active in the city’s political and cultural landscape. Hopefully this first foray of yours is not your last. State representative Patty Kim has become far too comfortable, too partisan, too passive, and remains unproductive; we would all do well to see a change in that seat. Or perhaps city council would be a place to try out your political interests.

Thank you for taking the time to read this letter, and good luck in all things but your pursuit of unseating Judge Pianka.


Josh First



Judge Barb Pianka: Savior of my Universe

If all politics are local, then there is nothing more important to the voters than the person dispensing the most justice in their neighborhood and immediate community.

Here in Pennsylvania, and in most of the country, district magistrates handle dog law violations, jay-walking, etc. The “little stuff” that can either clog up a justice system, or in the alternative, be ignored, thereby clogging up society with evil malcontents wreaking havoc on peaceable citizens.

Here in Uptown Harrisburg, we have an oasis. In our cozy oasis there is a historic neighborhood with beautiful stone homes, some big, some small, Italian Lake Park, wide streets, lots of mature trees, and friendly people who work for a living. Back yard gardens, manicured flower beds, big trees. It really is a small universe, in which so many of us toil for the benefit of the larger community. After all, it is this kind of neighborhood that is home to real, live, breathing taxpayers. In a school district like Harrisburg City, run by the state, home values are typically depressed as people with money flee so their taxes are not stolen and misused. So Uptown is rare, and worth shielding and protecting.

But what happens if we see a district magistrate elected who believes up is down? Who believes in politicizing basic judicial decisions? Who believes in using the seat as a bully pulpit for bigger issues. It has happened before, and when it happens, equal justice suffers. Then, those who can afford to flee, flee.

And this is why Judge Barbara Pianka is so important to Uptown Harrisburg, and why she must be re-elected. Presently she is in a primary race against two or three other candidates.

Barb Pianka is a level-headed, steady, non-political professional, and a known commodity here in Uptown. Barb has taken a firm hand with the appropriate people when it is called for, and she has relented and been lenient when she sees an opportunity for the perpetrator’s personal growth.

Dispensing justice the right way, as Barb does, keeps our community safe, and Uptown specifically.  Barb has done a great job, she has never been accused of malfeasance, and she should win her primary election race.

Citizens here cannot afford a change, and we cannot afford the two alternatives seeking to unseat Pianka. Let’s be honest about these two young men: One of them is a total newcomer to Harrisburg, which makes him seem like a political opportunist in this race. Where has he been the past ten years? He has no ties or roots here, and he has no measurable commitment to our community.

The second candidate is someone who runs a dog care business in Midtown. While I admire almost anyone who runs a business, this young man has had very little professional experience, and he appears to me to embrace radical politics. The last thing we need or deserve here is radical politics, where the dispensation of justice is racialized, warped, and filtered through a world view where everyone “black” is a victim, and everyone “white” is an oppressor.

Barb Pianka is a steady hand at the bench. Let’s re-elect her this Spring and protect our little universe here in Uptown Harrisburg.


End of Summer, Beginning of Cool Fall Begs Question: How Do People Live in Hot Climates Year-Round?

Temperate environments offer everyone something: Hot, cold, cool, warm, damp, dry, etc., at any given time of the year. It is true that at some points on the calendar, the heat or cold there may be intense. But those moments are but a temporary blip. A week or two this way or that way. Better weather always awaits, not too far around the corner. In temperate climates, Spring and Fall are typically the most enjoyable times of the year to be outside, with moderate temperatures lulling us to sleep under blankets at night, and refreshing us with gentle warmth during the day.

The margins around Summer and Winter always promise something better, and are full of natural hope. When Winter ends, the world here begins to grow. Life! Anew!

When someone cheerfully says “Yes, we are moving to Florida,” I wonder what the hell they are thinking. Not even the Seminole Indians truly appreciated or enjoyed the brutal heat and humidity there. Until they were driven into the Everglades at first, and then off the land entirely by Europeans, the Seminoles daily used the coastal waters to cool off during the Summer heat.  Natural air conditioning worked for a semi-nomadic, highly mobile society like theirs. Today? Good God y’all, the place is a sweat factory from May through October, and only livable during the winter months. It is 100% artificial living.

Yes, I understand, many Americans are now so delicately sensitive to cold that they must be surrounded by expensive artificial air conditioning nine months of the year in order to remove themselves from three months of cold up north.

What is lost there is a natural, innate resilience our forefathers enjoyed. An ability to put up with brief extremes and discomforts. One must naturally wonder what sort of character traits are bred into or out of a people so devoid of natural discomforts that they shoehorn themselves into an unnatural environment.

That said, I am right now listening to a political rally going on at the otherwise sedate and beautifully historic Dixon University Center two blocks away from here.  Tired old saws through a bullhorn like “What do we want? Justice. Now” are disturbing Harrisburg’s one remaining nice neighborhood. Delicate little snowflake people there are demanding some special treatment or other which they have neither earned nor deserve.  Apparently the artificial environment created for them by taxpayers and hard working Americans is insufficiently comfortable, and they want MORE, NOW! [, Mom]

Please go to Florida, fake protest people. We deal in real here. It’s a temperate zone, dontcha know?

And boy, does Hurricane Matthew now entering south Florida add a whole new meaning to “hot area.”

Power can corrupt, but some people worship power before they ever get it

“Power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely,” goes one famous observation.

Here in Pennsylvania we’ve had one long going example of power-mad officials using their office to attack symbols of their political opponents, and we’ve had one recent example of a nudnik mayor whose goal in life was to finally acquire power, and who then flubbed it publicly.

Long-term: Pennsylvania Attorney General Kathleen Kane dropped a bomb of false accusations and police with guns on Brian Bolus, his wife, his little boy. Bolus had the temerity to be cited by then governor Tom Corbett as a classic example of bootstrap capitalism, an all American kid who did well.

Corbett- Republican, Kane, Democrat. So Kane uses the power of her office to attack Corbett by proxy.

Years later, the AG has nothing, zero, to prosecute Bolus. Brian’s personal effects and titles to his paid-for home and vehicles are not in his possession, and the home video surveillance footage of the day the Gestapo visited his house is somehow missing.

Now why would criminal investigators “lose” the security video footage of their violent, over-the-top raid on a peaceful family? Could it be damning? Ummmm, you know it.

The Bolus attack is an obvious abuse of power by an AG drunk on influence and deep corruption, as if hiring her own sister into a sensitive public service job wasn’t bad enough.

Another reason for Kane to begone. And give back the Bolus family their personal things before ya hit the road, lady.

Short-term: Harrisburg cops terrorize, bully, threaten, harass, intimidate and falsely accused a 75-year-old Marine named Robert Ford on Memorial Day.

Ford’s crime? Wearing his fifty-year-old US Government issue Marine Corps uniform in public, where he had earlier performed Taps at a Memorial Day event. In other words, no crime.

Public outrage against the two Harrisburg keystone kops has grown ever since, with the story hitting media and blogs coast to coast. Officers Moody and O’Connor will not apologize for their unprofessional behavior, but making things worse…neither will Mayor Eric Papenfuse.

Papenfuse has excused the police officers and said they did nothing wrong.

This, from a man who hung around and lauded former anti-police terrorists. This from a man purveying his Yale undergrad degree as proof of his superiority. Apparently Yale doesn’t teach Morality 101, or Papenfuse was just so smart, too smart to take such a course.

So here we have an inexperienced used bookstore owner who used to accuse the police of being criminals, now wallowing in his newfound power, high on power, unable to break out of its grip and just do the right thing.

Yep, power corrupts. Let’s hope our citizenry corrects it.

Eric Papenfuse, you owe Robert Ford an apology

The following story is found at http://www.pennlive.com/midstate/index.ssf/2015/06/harrisburg_artsfest_veteran_st.html#incart_m-rpt-2.

The other day, a Harrisburg Police officer aggressively harassed an old Marine dressed in his uniform, accusing him of stolen valor.  That is where people wear military uniforms and medals they are not entitled to wear.  They do it to make themselves appear better, cooler, tougher.  Turns out, the old Marine, Robert Ford, was in fact honorably discharged from the US Marines a long time ago, and the uniform he proudly wore was given to him by the US Government.  He had just finished performing “Taps” at a Memorial Day ceremony and decided to walk over to ArtsFest along Front Street and the Susquehanna River.

American citizens cannot be expected to put up with this kind of over-reach and abuse of power.  It is official malfeasance, which is actionable. Harrisburg City has real crime problems.  This is Bad Government, Exhibit A. My God, what is happening here?

Questions about this videotaped and photographed event abound:

a) Will Detective (!) John O’Connor offer an apology to Ford?

b) Will Detective (!) O’Connor be demoted or terminated for his wildly unprofessional, threatening, bullying behavior of a free citizen?

c) Will Mayor Papenfuse have anything to say? Will he do anything?

d) Will Harrisburg police Captain Deric Moody also apologize, or be demoted? Moody’s behavior is almost worse than O’Connor’s, because he compounded the initial antagonistic behavior and then tried to cover it up.

Folks, Harrisburg is in trouble, deep trouble, and unless elected officials are quick to get these kinds of situations under control, a festering culture develops.  Recently I discovered that yet another city agency is once again making bad decisions in a vacuum.

Mayor Papenfuse, an apology from your police officers is Job #1.  Other elected officials should chime in, too.


Please brake for turtles

Beginning around the I-81 overpass over Front Street in Harrisburg, and ending about half a mile south, turtles are now trying to reach loamy dirt to lay their eggs.

Oddly, sadly, many dead and dying turtles litter the roadside, hit by cars, either by accident or on purpose.

It’s difficult to plumb the depths of someone’s thinking when they deliberately drive off the roadway and onto the roadside, to crush a tiny helpless little animal like this.

Please brake for turtles. They can’t, won’t, and haven’t done anything to us humans. They deserve to live, too.

Why I am Suing Mayor Papenfuse

The following op-ed was published at www.pennlive.com, which is the new digital version of the former Patriot News newspaper. What I submitted  was edited a bit by the staff there, and they mis-spelled attorney Josh Prince’s name, among other mistakes or omissions. If you are interested in seeing the difference of thinking between liberals and conservatives, you are encouraged to read the comments section following the letter.  The conservatives keep on repeating the same basic, accurate facts, the same simple logic, and the liberals keep talking about their feelings, going off-topic, mocking and commenting on physical appearance.  This is one of those moments where taxpayers can get a glimpse of the failure of America’s educational system, where critical thinking has been thrown overboard in favor of teaching students to be politically correct on issues, like government overreach on gun ownership.


Harrisburg City makes legal mistake after legal mistake

I am a plaintiff in a lawsuit against Mayor Eric Papenfuse and Harrisburg City, over his unwillingness to comply with longstanding state law and remove anti-gun ordinances from the city laws.

Papenfuse is a 1960s-1970s-style liberal, for whom ignoring the law, subverting the law, abandoning the law, undermining the law all represent some vague “Yeah, man!” hippie stand against laws he personally believes are wrong.

The problem with this approach is that once elected to office, a mayor cannot pick and choose which laws to follow or ignore.  The rule of law requires that all laws be upheld equally, or changed through the political process.

Being an elected leader means that you accept the legal and law-making process.  But then again, Papenfuse is an adoring fan of Obama, who also believes that he is a Government of One, able to do whatever he wants, rule by fiat, contrary to democratic norms.

Under Papenfuse’s hippie-fist-in-the-air don’t-have-a-care approach, Harrisburg City is making huge legal mistakes right and left in this lawsuit.

Two days ago, our attorney, Josh Prince, scored a default judgment against the city for $21,000 plus additional costs.  The city lawyers failed to file the correct paper work, failed to correctly fill out the paper work they did file, and missed key deadlines, and so the city failed on many counts to respond in court to legal documents presented to them.

While Papenfuse struts and preens to prove some undemocratic point, the city taxpayers are on the hook for ever increasing amounts of legal fees and judgments.  Eric fails, and the taxpayers here pay for his arrogant attitude.

If this is not failed government, then nothing is.