Before commenting on what transpired during the April 23rd board meeting, these two video clips should give you a painful reminder of what we all had to endure . . .
There are two particular moments that really stuck out in my mind:
#1) Lindner disses Kadri
Wow, talk about kicking a guy when he's down. Paul Kadri has not had much to smile about during his stint here in Neshaminy, and he's made it clear his future will be in another school district. Despite this, Kadri continues to work diligently to make our school district a better place. Apparently that's not enough for Howard Lindner.
Lindner launched into a verbal attack on Kadri, which was pretty gutless considering that he knew Kadri would never respond to him during a public meeting. Ironically it may have been Kadri who was one person in this district who tried to help out Lindner's family member by splitting that temporary administrative assignment to begin with. It's possible that by creating two jobs out of one, administration opened an opportunity which may not have been available to Lindner's family member otherwise.
Another thought - what if the shoe was on the other foot? What if Lindner's family member was the one shut out of an opportunity because of a handshake deal? Would he be so quick to condemn the concept of a split position then?
#2) Lindner's Posse
Lindner's "community" consisted of two groups:
Political Hacks - It was a Who's Who of the Middletown Republican Committee on hand to support Lindner, including:
* The MRC chairperson
* Several MRC committee people
* A former MRC auditor
* Two failed MRC school board candidates
* An unsuccessful MRC township supervisor candidate
With one gentleman using the occasion to launch his future campaign, and another being proclaimed a "future school board member," Lindner has made it very clear he is still a powerful influence within the MRC. For voters in Levittown and Langhorne, this means a vote for an MRC school board candidate is a vote for Howard Lindner. Would-be MRC candidates should strongly consider registering as Independents.
Intimidators - When a dozen or so Teamsters, who have never attended a school board meeting before, show up to be loud and intimidating in support of Lindner, you can only assume they were there to be a show of power. We've seen these kinds of tactics before, and undoubtedly we'll see them again. During the prior school board meeting, one of Lindner's minions pressured a PTO mom to keep her comments to herself by using a scornful, threatening tone. It was serious enough that the woman filed a complaint with the district, claiming that she would call the police if she was subjected to such treatment by this person in the future.
Mr. Lindner's behavior overshadowed what could have been a very positive meeting. At the outset of the session, a joint statement was made by a group of PTO parents and senior citizens calling on the board to resolve their differences and continue to work on the issues confronting Neshaminy. Lindner's performance minimized the efforts of the group as he took center stage, but it did serve a very useful purpose - it showed the entire community what he is all about. But unlike in previous years, these PTO parents are organized and committed to getting Neshaminy back on track, and they won't tolerate misinformation, temper tantrums, and intimidation tactics. No more running the school district from the cheap seats.
That is what gives me hope and confidence that things will get better.
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