Letters To The Editor

When, Judge..... When?

I recently read in the Plain Dealer, that Judge John O’Donnell had been seen “engaged in some light moshing” at the House of Blues. Now, "moshing" means to deliberately jostle with other dancers. It’s a highly energetic experience, and I truly hope he enjoyed himself! But, I got to wondering when he might put some of that energy to work on his court cases. Well, actually... one court case in particular.

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Volume 13, Issue 10, Posted 3:13 PM, 05.16.2017

Open Letter To Ohio Senator Sherrod Brown: Investigate Suspected Fraud In Lakewood Municipality

Thanks for your attention to our grievance about Lakewood’s $1.8 Million ordinances obligating us to the “cliff erosion protection” project. As you know, even the ODNR doesn’t recommend this at this time. Coastal seawalls and revetments etc, harm shores, lake water and won’t assure the prevention of cliff collapse. With these type of ordinances, President Trump’s $0 funding for Great Lake Protection, and Trump's denial of climate change, the multibillion dollar industry our lakes provide is greatly threatened.

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Volume 13, Issue 8, Posted 10:01 PM, 04.18.2017

End The Medical Marijuana Moratorium

At the previous city council meeting, Councilmember O’Malley addressed the potential of allowing state licensure for the sale of medical marijuana in the city of Lakewood. He and the Public Safety Committee expressed the concern that opening a dispensary in Lakewood in the middle of an opioid crisis would promote drug usage, rather than reduce it.

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Volume 13, Issue 6, Posted 8:14 PM, 03.21.2017

Dog Whistle Politics: Pit Bull Ban Is More Bark Than Bite

Since I started my campaign for Lakewood City Council this year, I have had the chance to speak with many current and former Lakewood residents. One of the major themes that keeps rising to the surface is Breed Specific Legislation [BSL]. This is the ordinance passed here in 2008 placing harsh limits on pit bull ownership within city limits. Some measures were taken to lower fines and waive registration fees, but this really isn’t enough.

I am 100% on the side of those who want this ordinance repealed entirely. Last week a friend of mine told me about how she ended up in Cleveland. She had lived in Lakewood for a few years, got a pit bull puppy, then became aware that Lakewood restricts pit bull ownership. She told her landlord, thinking that she would simply have to register her dog, pay a fee and that was it. Unfortunately, the next week she was served an eviction notice, citing the BSL ordinance.

I am 100% on the side of those who want this ordinance repealed entirely. Last week a friend of mine told me about how she ended up in Cleveland. She had lived in Lakewood for a few years, got a pit bull puppy, then became aware that Lakewood restricts pit bull ownership. She told her landlord, thinking that she would simply have to register her dog, pay a fee and that was it. Unfortunately, the next week she was served an eviction notice, citing the BSL ordinance.

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Volume 13, Issue 5, Posted 6:18 PM, 03.07.2017

Letter To The Editor: In Response To The "Electoral College" Article

The person that wrote about the electoral college saying that it was not democratic was absolutely correct.  A pure democracy WOULD mean the popular vote wins. Hate to tell you this but that is NOT what America is about. Technically America… stated by the founding fathers is a constitutional federal representative democracy. Um… I think you left out a few words. But that's just too complicated for you liberals so it was hacked away to justify and mean "democracy." Which is technically incorrect. The word “democracy” that America truly represents is a "representative democracy" or a "democratic republic."  This is what it means:

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Volume 13, Issue 4, Posted 6:40 PM, 02.21.2017

“Dearest Rob Portman You’ve Failed Us”

On February 7, 2017, a historical and hysterically heartbreaking Senate vote gave the OK to approve another unqualified billionaire, this time to be appointed as the U.S. education secretary. Betsy DeVos’ nomination was surrounded by much controversy due to her lack of experience with public schools, a terrible performance during her confirmation hearing, and a host of other disqualifications.

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Volume 13, Issue 4, Posted 6:40 PM, 02.21.2017

Lakewood Taxpayers Fight Back Against Lakewood City Council’s $1.8 Million Illegal Ordinances Impact On Our Pocketbooks, The Environment and Our Economy

LAKEWOOD CITY COUNCIL FUNDS $1.8 MILLION PROJECT FOR CLIFF EROSION THAT WILL NOT PREVENT CLIFF COLLAPSE

In the summer of 2016, the City of Lakewood passed Ordinance (25-16) with a cost above $704,000 for the Meridian Condo’s shore cliff "erosion protection." It did this without owner votes and in spite of over 54 owners' signed objections.

These owners brought to City Council top international geotechnical shoreline expert, Dr. R. Young, who during open council, advised that a shoreline cliff project is not indicated at this time and its design will not prevent potential collapse of its cliff (video A, B). City Council ignored him, ignored the condo’s hired engineer (Lewin and Assoc. firm) as well as top experts' correspondence who concurred with Dr. Young (C).

In January 2017, the City of Lakewood passed another Ordinance. This, for over $1,100,000. Ordinance (57-16) for “shoreline/cliff protection” for the Winton Place condo which is next door to the Meridian (the cliff is shared by these adjoining condos).

LAKEWOOD CITY COUNCIL AND MERIDIAN CONDO BOARD ARE IN VIOLATION OF CITY, STATE AND FEDERAL LAWS

Owners who oppose the cliff project hired top Cleveland attorney, Majeed Makhlouf, ex-Law Director of Cuyahoga County, who put condo boards, ODNR (Ohio Department of Natural Resources) State officials  and City Council on legal notice that they were violating condo, municipal, state and federal laws and ignoring multiple experts' advice (D). Officials,  Boards and City Council ignored these.

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Volume 13, Issue 3, Posted 4:24 PM, 02.07.2017

Gun Control In Ohio (Opinion Letter)

As an advocate for domestic violence awareness and prevention, I want to acknowledge all of the dedicated, bipartisan legislative accomplishments that our Ohio Congressman and Senators have done and continue to do to help prevent gun violence in our communities. In 2016, Ohio enacted a law prohibiting violent career criminals from buying, possessing, or carrying a gun. Ohio also requires a firearm owner to report the loss or theft of any firearm in the person’s possession or under the person’s control.

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Volume 13, Issue 3, Posted 4:24 PM, 02.07.2017

Our "Bin" Memories

An open letter to all former employees and trainees of Nature's Bin/Cornucopia Inc.

As "The Bin" closed it's doors for good on November 12, 2016, may we take some time to recall old memories. In my heart, "it's see ya soon" from this Bin grad. For others …hearts are broken, as this is a funeral of an institution that provided work and friendship for so many. Please remember that when one door closes, another will open. New, exciting adventures await. Just like little kid's, "let's embrace this new era of uncertainty with wide-eyed eagerness, optimism, and willingness to venture into the unknown."

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Volume 12, Issue 25, Posted 7:29 PM, 12.06.2016

Letter To The Editor: The Electoral College

It has been said that people get the government they deserve. This may be true. Many Americans who are more interested in the performance of their sports teams than they are in their government. A democracy can't work unless citizens take part in it. They should take the time to learn about candidates' qualifications and evaluate issues. They should be concerned that all citizens should be able to vote and that everyone's vote should count. That is far from the case in the U.S. today. Even in presidential years voter turnout is abysmally low.

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Volume 12, Issue 24, Posted 4:35 PM, 11.22.2016

An Open Letter To The People Of Lakewood From Dennis Kucinich

Dear Friends,

I write to you as a dear friend whose community interests I looked after for many years.  There is simply no legitimate justification for closing Lakewood Hospital,  unless you believe the financial interest of Cleveland Clinic is superior to the public interest of the people of Lakewood in having a community hospital to call its own.

Though officials have moved ahead to make the hospital closing a done deal, the people have a right to undo the “done deal” by voting “No” on issue 64.  I urge you to do so, to stand up for Lakewood, stand up for community, stand up for 108 years of public ownership of the hospital and stand up for Lakewood’s future where young families and elderly families alike have close access to a life-saving community hospital they can call their own.

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Volume 12, Issue 22, Posted 5:52 PM, 10.25.2016

An Open letter to LEAF: Please Vote Against Issue 64

There is no more respected voice in Lakewood on issues of sustainability, health and local resilience than Lakewood Earth and Food Community (LEAF). The deal that closed Lakewood Hospital impacts all of these issues, in predominantly negative ways. I would like to ask LEAF’s members to consider joining opponents of this deal, which voters will confront in November as Issue 64.

Closing our hospital leaves Lakewood without many important health services. Worse, it leaves Lakewood without the control over local interests that our publicly owned hospital protected. As experience has demonstrated—in East Cleveland, in Sagamore Hills, and in Lakewood—a private multinational will pay lip-service to what’s best for communities even while transferring away resources that people depend on.

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Volume 12, Issue 22, Posted 8:11 AM, 10.28.2016

Former Councilperson Urges A Vote Against 64

I was on Lakewood Council in 1996 when we worked with the Mayor and Law Director to craft a document assuring that Lakewood residents had continuing access to quality health care services. At that time, Lakewood Hospital became part of “Cleveland Clinic West” which included Lutheran and Fairview hospitals. The Clinic was expected to operate Lakewood Hospital, enabling our hospital to continue to thrive in the rapidly changing health care market. Protections for Lakewood Hospital and flexibility for the Clinic were included.

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Volume 12, Issue 22, Posted 5:52 PM, 10.25.2016

Lakewood’s Audacious Activists

Last month, retired editorial director, Brent Larkin of The Plain Dealer published an opinion calling Lakewood voters who supported a charter and mayoral change last November “unlovable losers” in their defeat and perseverance to right a terrible wrong. That wrong being the deliberate sabotage and closing of Lakewood Hospital by execution of a “decanting” plan to transfer patients and services; charging of exorbitant administrative fees to burden the bottom line; and through secret negotiations to privatize millions in public assets without competition or fair compensation. The perseverance of these so called “losers,” resulted in the collection of thousands of signatures that has placed a referendum on this election’s ballot to challenge the deal struck and confirmed by City Council in December 2015. This issue will appear at the very end of the ballot as 64.

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Volume 12, Issue 22, Posted 5:52 PM, 10.25.2016

Improving On A Wrong

The beautiful homes were torn down over 50 years ago. All the sidewalks and trees were removed. The neighborhood was torn in half.

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Volume 12, Issue 22, Posted 5:52 PM, 10.25.2016

Keep Lakewood On A Roll By Voting FOR Issue 64

To the Editor:
 
Lakewood is on a roll due in large part to the wisdom of her residents. The schools are strong, which contributes to making the housing market one of the hottest in the region. We have lovely parks and a wonderful arts community. The vision of responsible city leaders, together with the hard work of residents, has made that happen.
 

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Volume 12, Issue 22, Posted 5:52 PM, 10.25.2016

Life Is Different: Why I'm Voting AGAINST 64

I was born in Lakewood. I grew up in Lakewood. As an adult, I stayed in Lakewood. My address has always been at the same house in Lakewood. I do business in Lakewood. I invest in Lakewood. I put my life into being a Lakewoodite. I stayed for many reasons. I'm still here for many reasons. I live in a different City now. I haven't moved, but I live in a different City now. Life is different.

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Volume 12, Issue 22, Posted 5:52 PM, 10.25.2016

Democracy In Action At Lakewood Dems Meeting by Chitra Walker

“NO ENDORSEMENT”!! Exactly one half of the unusually large crowd at the Thursday, September 29th, 2016 meeting of the Lakewood Democratic Club breathed a sigh of relief; the other half was mostly silent, but most likely grimaced in frustration! “No endorsement” was the result of the vote taken at this meeting of the Club on Issue 64, the referendum on the ballot in November to either “save Lakewood hospital”, or move forward into the 21st century with a state-of-the-art Family Health Care Center based on the healthcare needs of the demographics of Lakewood and its immediate surrounding area! Yes, each side had exactly half the votes cast For and Against and a number of members had also cast votes to Abstain. An incredible phenomenon that many in the room who had expected the Club to endorse the view of the “Savers” (an epithet by which they have come to be known over this rancorous and divisive year in Lakewood) did not think would happen.

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Volume 12, Issue 21, Posted 4:56 PM, 10.11.2016

Repeal The Steal - Vote AGAINST 64

February 5, 2016: You receive notice that you must vacate your home; no one else is allowed to occupy the dwelling that used to be your home.

November 9, 2016: You receive notice that you must bulldoze your home; you are responsible for all costs.

VOTE AGAINST 64.

In December 2015, when Mayor Michael P. Summers and City Council voted for a Master Agreement that shuttered Lakewood Hospital, they placed the City of Lakewood - your home - into this exact position.

In August 2007, Fred M. DeGrandis (then President and CEO of Cleveland Clinic Regional Hospitals) wrote that by 1985, Lakewood Hospital was the last city-owned hospital in the state of Ohio. Therefore, if you live in the city of Lakewood, you are ‘part-owner’ of Lakewood Hospital.

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Volume 12, Issue 21, Posted 4:56 PM, 10.11.2016

Open Letter To Lakewood Residents

Lakewood Friends and Family,

There are many in Lakewood concerned about not having a full-service hospital in the city. There are others upset about the loss of Lakewood's largest employer and the millions in lost tax revenue. However, this didn’t move me to get involved. However, when I saw what was really happening behind the scenes… I quickly became an activist for this cause.

When it came to closing the Lakewood Hospital, the Cleveland Clinic saw an opportunity to save money and increase profits. For them, there are simply too many Medicare and Medicaid recipients in and near Lakewood. Too many senior citizens and single mothers. Too many people working two or even three jobs to make ends meet without any healthcare benefits. Too many under-insured young people, just starting out on their own (and I was one of them.) The Cleveland Clinic views these groups as liabilities. They'd much rather move the capacities of Lakewood Hospital to Fairview and Avon, where they are likely to increase Clinic profit margins.

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Volume 12, Issue 20, Posted 5:03 PM, 09.27.2016

Issue 64 Is Not Progress

On the November 8th General Election ballot, Lakewood voters will have their first and only opportunity for a direct vote on the deal that closed Lakewood Hospital. It will appear as Issue 64 with options for or AGAINST Ordinance #49-15.

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Volume 12, Issue 20, Posted 5:03 PM, 09.27.2016

For 64 And For Lakewood's Future

Like many of you, I believe in the values of fighting for Lakewood, of fairness in regards to the proper use of taxpayer assets and providing residents with the services necessary for a healthy and active city. This is why I fought to ensure that the Cleveland Clinic provide Lakewood with 21st Century health care in the form of a state of the art Family Health Center and fully accredited 24/7 Emergency Room to serve residents long into the future.

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Volume 12, Issue 20, Posted 5:03 PM, 09.27.2016

Second Ambulance Cost $700!

The Cleveland Clinic is now promoting the current emergency room at Lakewood Hospital with advertisements mailed to Lakewood residents. People are being wrongly told that, “Our board-certified emergency medicine physicians skillfully treat everything from cuts and fractures to cardiac arrest and stroke.”

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Volume 12, Issue 19, Posted 5:46 PM, 09.13.2016

Yes, Build Lakewood Helped Save Healthcare For Our City

I was cleaning my garage when a neighbor stopped for a visit. She saw my Build Lakewood yard sign and asked, “what’s the group about?” After sharing my response, her reply was: “Wow! You guys saved healthcare for Lakewood.”

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Volume 12, Issue 19, Posted 5:46 PM, 09.13.2016

Keep Lakewood Moving Forward

Lakewood Hospital has now been closed as an inpatient facility since the end of January. Employees have been successfully relocated. Business in Lakewood is thriving. Our housing market is experiencing a boom. People want to live here. The doom and gloom predicted by the Save Lakewood Hospital group is simply not coming to fruition.

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Volume 12, Issue 19, Posted 5:46 PM, 09.13.2016

Parents' Take On Wagar Park Redesign

As a resident who lives near Wagar Park and goes there regularly with my young children, I was thrilled to learn that the city was planning on redesigning this space. I attended the second “re-envisioning” meeting for Wagar Park, where the three new park design concepts were unveiled to the public for the first time, and was disappointed that the two groups which seem to use the park the most (families of small children and middle school children) where not in attendance, most likely due to the time of day that the meeting was held (dinner/ bed time).  In response to this deficit of input, I hosted my own informal meeting on August 23rd to ask other parents what they would like to see in the new Wagar Park and their opinions of the three concepts put forth by the city. These were my findings. 

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Volume 12, Issue 18, Posted 4:10 PM, 08.30.2016

Lakewood Insiders Rebrand As “Lakewood Voters For Progress” Ahead Of Hospital Referendum

Lakewood insiders who orchestrated the closure of Lakewood Hospital, boldly handing over its $150M in assets to politicians and private corporatists for pennies on the dollar, have resurfaced as “Lakewood Voters for Progress” ahead of the November 8 referendum. Formerly known as the discredited dark money group “Build Lakewood,” this new group is comprised of many of the same City of Lakewood politicians and Lakewood Hospital Association trustees that opponents say acted in violation of their fiduciary responsibilities to the hospital and its citizen-owners.

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Volume 12, Issue 18, Posted 10:27 PM, 08.16.2016

Donald Trump's Campaign

The discussion of Donald Trump should begin with the large irony surrounding his campaign thus far in that he is the exact embodiment of the idea of the corrupt insider politician that he claims to be running against. He says whatever he needs to say, masking it as if he is speaking his mind. He ignores large segments of the country in favor of his own self-interests and those who align tangentially with his own self-interests. He is at his very core, a dishonest individual, which we have seen repeatedly in his business dealings and his short time in political life.

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Volume 12, Issue 17, Posted 10:25 PM, 08.16.2016

Let's Move Forward, Not Look Back

The drama concerning the future of Lakewood Hospital continues even though it should have been resolved with the election results last November. Voters re-elected Mayor Mike Summers, an opponent of the proposed referendum, and defeated Issue 64 which would have forced a vote of the people before any decisions could be made regarding the hospital.

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Volume 12, Issue 16, Posted 6:37 PM, 08.02.2016

By Your Deeds Ye Shall Be Known...

He had to leave in order to come back and win. He had to go out there to Miami with the scrutiny and the hate in his rearview mirror and pretend he didn’t hear the volume of it all. He watched them burn his jersey and yank down his posters. He heard the former pros wreck his name and speak poorly about abandoning his hometown. He made the mistake of answering freely, when asked about how many championships he might stockpile there in the city where he “took his talents,” by joking with his ring-less digits 1, 2, 3 maybe more….. ha ha ha.

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Volume 12, Issue 15, Posted 4:38 PM, 07.19.2016

Welcome Republican Convention!!!

I've been thinking lately about how Cleveland will be hosting the Republican National Convention for four days starting July 18 and that we Clevelanders should really roll out the welcome mat to make them feel more at home!

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Volume 12, Issue 15, Posted 4:38 PM, 07.19.2016

The Remains Of Independence Day

As a veil of smoke from the annual July 4 fireworks show mingled with the mist and expanded outward from Lakewood Park the night of Monday, July 4, some of those leaving the display cast a pall on tree lawns, sidewalks, and streets as they vamoosed from the show.

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Volume 12, Issue 15, Posted 4:38 PM, 07.19.2016

Can Council's Courage Continue???

Kudos to Lakewood City Council for voting 7-0 to outlaw discrimination in private employment and public accommodation based on one's sexual orientation or gender identity/expression. This legislation benefits every member of our community both socially and economically and makes Lakewood a better place for all the residents.

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Volume 12, Issue 14, Posted 4:11 PM, 07.06.2016

City Council Vote On Meridian Revetment Ordinance

Fifty-two Meridian owners object to ordinances 25 and 26/16 for the following reasons:

The revetment project is doomed to fail according to the recommendations of both geotechnical experts who studied the cliff. To avoid cliff collapse and erosion, they recommend only to place drainage and monitors above. However, the ordinance calls only for a revetment at the base, something both experts did not feel is recommended for at least 25 to 50 years.

Ex Cuyahoga co. Law director, attorney Majeed akhlouf, hired by concerned owners listed overwhelming legal precedent that makes this project illegal. For example, he states: "Approving this ordinance and its funding by council will be the usurpation of property and thus is illegal because it fails to have 100% owner's approval. The ordinance constitutes abuse of power and misapplication of the municipal funds without just compensation through the eminent domain process as determined by the US's Fifth Amendment and Article 1 of the Ohio constitution. Should city council approve this ordinance without 100% owner's approval, Lakewood council must pay for this job. (see US constitution Loretto V Teleprompter 458 US 419 (1982)"

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Volume 12, Issue 14, Posted 4:11 PM, 07.06.2016

Malley's, Then And Now

My first memory of visiting Malley's Ice Cream parlor was when I was 4 years old, I am now 73. I fell in love with the glory that was friendly decor and service and most of all the creamy, sweet ice crem covered in the glistening thing that was chocolate fudge...warm and melty all over. Over the years my parents, grandparents and now my kids and grandkids are treated regularly to this experience when they come to town as recently as last week. Other out-of-town guests have tasted Lakewood in the parlor while hearing me expound on the virtues and history of the quality of the establishment.

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Volume 12, Issue 14, Posted 4:11 PM, 07.06.2016

A General Look At A Specific Scene

We, as Americans, love beginnings, we love the sure-footed reach of what might become of our hope, hopes-- the general desire and the specific desire. We want our candidates to speak of some honesty of intention, some intention that will lead to fulfillment. You, dear candidate, must say you will achieve some prospect, some beginning toward the most good. But, we are not too particular about the course to such a goal. I say this in the general not the specific, many of us are proud to call ourselves wonks, policy hounds on a scent, combers of things. And, this is not to say the many that reach for broad goals are not specific or understanding-- it’s a general outlook of, “Say The Dream.”

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Volume 12, Issue 11, Posted 4:51 PM, 05.24.2016

Burying The Hospital Alive

In December 2015, Lakewood City Council rushed the vote to close Lakewood Hospital. They called extra council meetings to pass this "emergency" measure because the seven members of City Council believed that the $50 million Lakewood Hospital Foundation was about to go bankrupt.

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Volume 12, Issue 10, Posted 3:33 PM, 05.10.2016

Americans Are Suckers

Like most Americans, I just finished handing 15% of my income over to various government entities which included three different municipalities because I work outside of Lakewood. A socialist (Democrats) would tell you that you are receiving numerous services for that money. Really? Well, if you don't have any children or send your children to private school you are essentially paying someone else's tuition. You may not have needed to dial 911 this year but it could be argued that you still benefited from the coverage.

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Volume 12, Issue 8, Posted 3:33 PM, 05.10.2016

Vote For Someone With Vision

There are many who object to Bernie Sanders plans for America. They say that his proposals are too grandiose, too expensive and will lead this country into crippling debt. They will turn us into a socialist nation, with our citizens overly reliant on big government.

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Volume 12, Issue 7, Posted 4:44 PM, 03.29.2016

Save Lives, Save Jobs, Save Lakewood, Save Lakewood Hospital

Lakewood residents deserve a fulltime acute care hospital! Lakewood is the most densely populated city between New York City and Chicago. 52,000 residents live here. Senior citizens have been encouraged to move here to senior apartments near our hospital. They are less likely to have a car to take them for medical attention.

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Volume 12, Issue 5, Posted 11:28 AM, 03.01.2016

Second Chance Opportunity

I spoke to hundreds of people in their homes, in  parking lots and on the streets of Lakewood in 9 degree weather to gather signatures on the petition. Why? Because we promised we would have a referendum to repeal Ordinance 49-15 that council passed that gave all the assets of Lakewood Hospital to the Cleveland Clinic for pennies on the dollar. With our current city council puppets, a referendum is the only way for the citizens to influence what will happen to their asset, Lakewood Hospital.

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Volume 12, Issue 4, Posted 1:37 PM, 02.16.2016

Field Of Dreams

So what comes next?  A few years from now, the former site of the Lakewood Hospital will be ready for redevelopment. Now is the perfect time for bold visionary leadership from our elected officials.  We are presented with a unique once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for the City of Lakewood to plan, develop and implement a major and enduring civic achievement on the more than five acres that will be shovel-ready for redevelopment in a few short years.

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Volume 12, Issue 4, Posted 1:37 PM, 02.16.2016

Record-Breaking String Of Hot Years Is Almost Certainly A Result Of Climate Change

Dear Editor,
 
In an expert study released this week, scientists found that the last two decades of record-breaking hot temperatures are almost certainly the result of man-made climate change.
 
Earlier this month, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and NASA announced that 2015 was the hottest year on record,underscoring the need for urgent climate action. Ohio has good reason to be concerned about this alarming trend: driven by carbon and methane pollution, climate change is fueling costly and deadly extreme weather events, including droughts, heat waves, hurricanes, and record winter storms. Luckily, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has finalized the Clean Power Plan, which sets the first ever federal limits on carbon pollution from power plants.
 
The heat is on and there's no time to wait. I urge Govener Kasich to serve Ohio's best interest by implementing the Clean Power Plan and reducing the pollution that drives climate change while creating new clean energy jobs. The future of our children and the planet depends on it.
 
Brittany Chanley
 
 

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Volume 12, Issue 3, Posted 2:29 PM, 02.02.2016

Soccer Is Broken In Lakewood: My Open Letter Of Resignation

My name is Ted Nagel, and I am the current Vice President of the Lakewood Soccer Association (LSA). Effective immediately, I tender my resignation to the Board of LSA. There are a number of reasons why I am doing this, and also, why I am doing it publicly. I will explain my reasoning below and end with a challenge to the people who are currently in positions of trust related to soccer in Lakewood.

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Volume 12, Issue 2, Posted 5:45 PM, 01.19.2016

Officials Fail City, Future In Citizens’ Hands

On Monday, December 21, 2015, Lakewood City Council rubber-stamped a secretly negotiated 11th-hour plan to surrender Lakewood Hospital to Cleveland Clinic. The Clinic intends, with this authority, to complete its illicit decanting of what has always been a community-owned hospital, and to lock up healthcare in Lakewood for Clinic-owned hospitals elsewhere. Facing an ongoing lawsuit and possible investigations of their maladministration, the Clinic and its apologists apparently hope to thwart justice with a fait accompli.

The people of Lakewood do not have to let this happen. Council has embraced a false narrative of "the Clinic or nothing," blatantly ignoring the active overtures of a fully qualified alternative. Lakewood owes it to future generations, as well as the most vulnerable populations now and tomorrow, to employ every legal means to block the handover of our hospital and negotiate an alternative to the Cleveland Clinic’s dishonesty and theft.

Please don’t begin the coming year by giving up on your community. If council has lost the will to fight for Lakewood’s interests, honest working citizens have not.

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Volume 12, Issue 2, Posted 6:23 PM, 01.05.2016

A Nation's Bugle Sounds

Listen, you can clearly hear the sound of the conical shaped, shiny, brass bugle playing in a distance. 

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Volume 12, Issue 1, Posted 6:19 PM, 01.05.2016

A Lesson In Modern Democracy

Even though the vote of city council on the issue to abandon Lakewood Hospital was a foregone conclusion, the auditorium at City Hall was packed with proponents on both sides. All were given time to speak.

Members of the Committee to Save Lakewood Hospital (dressed mainly in red) rendered the most passionate opinions. Council chairperson Madigan constantly referred to them as "red shirts" and admonished them to be respectful. Since when is passionate discourse delivered with a voice of moral outrage disallowed? Where would this nation be without the likes of Thomas Paine?

The votes and explanations of council were unanimous. Each one defended their decision with the same hand-wringing excuse that they were constrained by restrictions in the city charter. Not one stepped outside the box or came up with a creative solution. There were no heroics from that group--just mediocre renderings and toadying to big money.

Like so many aspects of American life, healthcare has fallen prey to profit. It was a sad night for the City of Lakewood and a foreshadowing of the dismal outcomes we face at the hands of those who are now in charge of our future.

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Volume 12, Issue 1, Posted 6:19 PM, 01.05.2016

Medical Experts Warn That Climate Change Is A Public Health Threat

An international alliance of doctors, nurses, and other health professionals urged world governments to respond to the public health threats posed by climate change with a strong global agreement. This alliance released declarations of a global medical consensus on climate change signed by 1,700 health organizations, 8,200 hospitals and health facilities, and 13 million health professionals at the UN climate conference in Paris earlier this month.

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Volume 12, Issue 1, Posted 6:19 PM, 01.05.2016

The Bitter Fruit

For those of you who so gladly embraced the Republican notion of "regime change" in the Middle East, specifically Iraq...you got your wish...though perhaps not nearly the kind of change you and they so foolishly expected. The sad events in Paris are a direct result of that totally misguided thinking. The funny part is...now the Republicans will say they have even more reason for their clannish distrust and hatred of Muslims. And I am sure their solutions to this tragedy will be equally as hateful and destructive...one or another form of bloody "an eye for an eye" multiplied a hundredfold. This kind of thinking is being caught up and carried away in a vicious cycle of violence. And what it has proven is nothing more than a self-fulfilling prophecy.    

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Volume 11, Issue 24, Posted 3:38 PM, 11.24.2015

Everyone Must Pay Their Fair Share

The Clifton Club is a For-Profit corporation located at 17884 Lake Road, on 1.42 acres, and includes a 10,992 square foot building. When I found out how little the Clifton Club was valued at, according to Cuyahoga County records ($775,000), I asked the county to do an on-site appraisal of the Clifton Club. The appraisal took 4 months to finish, as the Clifton Club insisted on having their attorneys and manager there when the appraisal was conducted.

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Volume 11, Issue 24, Posted 3:38 PM, 11.24.2015

Election Analysis: Council And Hospital

Last week's election results sent mixed signals on Lakewood Hospital's future.

Many advocates for the hospital were disappointed at the defeat of mayoral challenger Mike Skindell, who argued passionately for saving Lakewood Hospital. The narrow rejection of Issue 64, which would have provided an automatic referendum on any action by City Council to close the hospital, also appears to be a setback.

Yet Issue 64 was not, itself, a referendum on closing Lakewood Hospital. What's more, its defeat serves as a reminder that Lakewood's electorate is home to more than one viewpoint. In studying the results of last Tuesday's vote, it's worth examining the point of view of Issue 64's opponents. One of the most prominent publications to oppose Issue 64 warned that it "could doom Lakewood Hospital," which certainly casts doubt on whether its defeat represented a mandate to close that same hospital.

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Volume 11, Issue 23, Posted 4:01 PM, 11.10.2015

UpTown Madison

Am I the only one who can see the beautiful vintage buildings, the fine businesses  and homes that line Lakewood's Up Town Madison Avenue? Mostly original, others tastefully repurposed. It's too bad that some have been forgotten, neglected and are now taken for granted.  

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Volume 11, Issue 23, Posted 4:01 PM, 11.10.2015

Senator Skindell Thanks Lakewood Community

I want to take this opportunity to thank the greater Lakewood community for considering me for the office of mayor. Our campaign was brought forth by a grassroots call to bring openness, honesty and accountability in government and to instill a fair process in determining the future of Lakewood Hospital. I want to sincerely thank all those supporters who cast a vote, put up a yard sign, volunteered or contributed our campaign. I am deeply grateful for your confidence.

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Volume 11, Issue 23, Posted 4:01 PM, 11.10.2015