Sunday, December 12, 2010


It should be of little comfort to Stark Countians that one of the members of the Stark County delegation to the Ohio General Assembly is a leading example of hypocrisy in government and then, in a sort of ironic way, serves as "the pot calling the kettle black."

But that is the Stark County Political Report's take on state Senator Kirk Schuring (Republican - the 29th) and his apparent co-conspirator Plain Township trustee Scott Haws are up to in the setting up of a counter meeting (at the Plain Community Branch of the Stark County District Library) to a meeting proposed originally by the Plain Township trustees to find out what, if any, threat that a natural gas extracting process called hydraulic fracking will do to the Stark County freshwater supply, if allowed to move forward by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR).

Schuring, working with Scott Haws (a fellow Republican, and a Plain Township trustee himself) apparently has been working with Schuring (who will soon be state Representative Schuring [the 51st] - he and Scott Oelslager having traded places from the House to the Senate and back again in a move by both to defeat voter intent to have term limits), to undermine the original information meeting on fracking.

Why would Haws want to generate the "unraveling" of the credibility of the original meeting set up for this coming Tuesday, December 14th at Plain township hall (5:30 p.m.)?

The SCPR believes the reason is because Haws is every bit as predetermined as he (through Senator Schuring) accuses fellow trustee Louis Giavasis of being.  Moreover, the SCPR thinks that Schuring shares Haws; viewpoint.

Haws' viewpoint?  

Although he has worked hard in serving within the Democrat-controlled (Giavasis and Leno) control township hall as being some kind of non-partisan. the SCPR, for one, is not buying in.  The Report has seen very little to indicate that Haws is anything but a dutiful Republican officeholder.  Generally, whatever the national, state and local Republicans hold near and dear, so goes Scott Haws.

In a sort of weird way, Giavasis is deserving of being played "the political fool" because he is attempting the same with Haws, but in a much less skillful political way.

There is no doubt about it.  Haws and Schuring are correct.  Giavasis appears to the SCPR to have already determined that hydraulic fracking is a danger to the safety of the freshwater supply.  

However, the point of this blog is that Haws and Schuring are also predetermined on the other side of the issue, and are trying to wrestle the high moral ground away from Giavasis in disparaging the objectivity of the Giavasis initiative.

Haws sucked Giavasis into attributing objective-esque qualities to Haws' work in setting up the original meeting.  The Report thinks that Giavasis was being nice in order to finesse Haws into letting critics of the natural gas drilling industry use the township hall forum as a venting exercise.  But Giavasis has badly miscalculated on Haws, and hence Haws was working backdoor with Schuring to sabotage the Plain Township Hall meeting.

Even though this whole exercise is at the township level (supposedly "non-partisan"), folks there are some thoroughgoing Byzantine politics going on here.   

And there are national political ramifications.  As national politics relates to fracking, it was a really big deal but generally unnoticed when the Bush-Cheney administration exempted  hydraulic fracturing (by pushing legislation through Congress)  from the Safe Drinking Water Act and to the Clean Air Act, the Superfund Law, the Clean Water Act, which is separate from the Safe Drinking Water Act.

Schuring, when he ran for congress against John Boccieri in 2006, was about pro-drilling (oil and natural gas) as one can get.  One has to remember the times.  Gasoline prices were spiking up to $4.00 and $4.00 plus a gallon.  Schuring's political operatives sent some locals (including Stark County auditor-elect Alan Harold and Minerva school board member Jan Kishman) to a Boccieri campaign event at the Sunoco station on West Tuscarawas near downtown to bash Boccieri for his measured approach to drilling in ANWAR (Alaska) and off-shore (pre-BP-Horizon).

So for Schuring and his fellow Haws to paint Giavasis as he really is, but to set themselves off as not having a bias, is a perfectly clear case of political hypocrisy and irony.

Will they get away with it?

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