Friday, June 16, 2006

Illiteracy, Illiteracy, Nothing but Illiteracy

lee drury de cesare
15316 Gulf Boulevard 802
Madeira Beach, FL 33708

All correspondence including email sent to School Board members or School District staff are considered public records, per Florida Statute 119

This grammar-punctuation disaster adorns the first page of the district’s web site. It contains a subject-verb agreement error, three comma errors, and no end punctuation. The passive verb is wretched style.


The Board considers all correspondence, including email to Board members or School District staff, to be public records per Florida statute 119.

The problem with this public-records invocation is that the Board assures the public of access to data, yet its official spin doctor, Le Steve Grammar-Punctuation-Challenged Heggarty, engages in stalling, cover-up, flim-flam, and, in Governor Dean’s immortal words on Hardball, hide-the-salami tactics to keep the public from access to public records.

The public deserves better grammar/punctuation and less hog-wash from School Board public servants and administrative public parasites.

Lee drury de cesare
15316 Gulf Boulevard 802
Madeira Beach, FL 33708

See for more commentary on the School Board and the administration.

lee drury de cesare
15316 Gulf Boulevard 802
Madeira Beach, FL 33708

See for more commentary on the School Board and the administration. Gentlepeople of the Hillsborough County School Board:

One sees that Ms. Elia's web page biography still contains punctuation errors that would shame a remedial-English student. Doesn't the Board feel responsibility to have the overpaid, punctuation-illiterate superintendent purge the errors? I told the superintendent how to do so. I taught college English for twenty-eight years and am qualified to identify and correct punctuation errors. She presided over the real-estate scam that the Board overlooked.

La Elia apparently pouts and continues the affront to literacy on her Web page even after I published the corrections. This World Wide Web Hillsborough County illiteracy reflects on the Board and shall feature as a campaign issue when next you Board members face us voters. If you think it's in the interest of education to hire and pay a superintendent a quarter of a million dollars a year who can't punctuate and who can't manage the real-estate business in her bailiwick without ripping off the public before she got the superintendent job, then voters need to hear that explanation from you all on the stump.

The Board made the decision to choose the least qualified candidate for this important job of superintendent. The pay of a quarter of a million dollars of tax money that this punctuation-challenged worst-choice-real-estate-scam-colluding superintendent candidate gets demands at a minimum her being able to punctuate at the level that the diplomas of the graduating students purport to guarantee.

This embarrassing affliction added to La Elia's disastrous supervision of the real-estate-scam-ridden building department that constituted her putative recommendation for the job should make this Board ashamed of its round-heels' playing into the hands of the in-house power cabal of thugs determined to hang on to the the clout that control of the tax-supplied budget stash gives its members to inflate their own salaries; to act as patronage chiefs in doling out contracts; and to awarding jobs to buddies, paramours, and no-talent hangers-on without honoring the Board's promise and Title VII legal duty for equal-opportunity hiring.

I suggest hiring bias reflects poorly on the School Board minority members, Valdez and Ethridge. They should be resistant to discrimination. Instead, they have joined the Anglo potted plants in collusion with unfair, illegal hiring practices.

This superintendent cabal runs a racket that you Board members collude with by your not doing your homework and by your sitting on the Board like potted plants, not as engaged public servants who guard students', teachers', and the taxpaying community's interest in education.

You Board drones don't ask the administration tough questions; you simply go along with its agenda. You do not honor the promise to the public that you made in running for the Board that you will protect its interests. You are too lazy or too deficient in courage to do so. The public and the students deserve better.

Board stalwarts: What about ordering the superintendent to purge her web page of punctuation errors? Is web-page literacy too much to ask of a school superintendent when a taxpayer gave her the answers to the test? La Elia's illiteracy disgraces the Board and makes you on that putative governing body look like collusive patsies who don't give a fig for the high purpose of education. Those Web superintendent basic-punctuation errors mock any claim from the Board or administration about its commitment to literacy.

Board members: Keep in mind that you are La Elia's bosses; she is not your boss. Act your part. Recall Shakespeare's words: "There is a tide in the affairs of men [add "women"] which, taken at the flood/Leads on to greatness. Omitted, all the voyage of their lives is bound and shallows and in miseries."

Board members: Use the power that the voters gave you, or, if you lack the courage of your office, step down for candidates who will use it for the community's benefit.

lee drury de cesare

Birthday greetings to Steve Hegarty, who draws $91,000 tax dollars a year to evade citizens' government-in-the-sunshine requests from the people who pay his unearned salary, LE STEVE preferring to work as the spin shill of a corrupt administrartion bent on ripping off the taxpayers and bloating its salaries despite Superintendent Elia's inability to punctuate a simple sentence and Lover Boy Hamilton's inability to distinguishe between "you're" and "your."

Happy Birthday, sychophantic, spin-doctor Steve Heggarty:
Your Escutcheon

My Escutcheon

Steve, it's your 22nd birthday! I couldn't let the day go by without sending you birthday greetings. Imagine my surprise when I found out you are a Gemini like I am. I knew we were soul mates the first screaming session we had.

Now to seal the soul-mate pact, consider this a birthday request --the fifth--to identify those three anonymous administrators you cited in your job application that you kept in contact with, sensing such sychophancy would secure you a job in the future for which you were unqualified and a salary which you do not deserve since you can't punctuate. School employees should be able to punctuate.

I await your explanation that the Sunshine Law says you owe me, a citizen requesting public information, for your refusal to send me a fulsome essay on why I can't have these data. Your curt "no" hurts my feelings and is not sporting.

Happy birthday and may you have many more but not on the public tax tab in the job-hiring-buddy-system of the School Board.

lee drury de cesare, Gemini but honest

Ms. Gentry:
Please get the files of the finalists in the superintendent hiring; the files in the public-relations hiring (Heggarty's), Dr. Otero's employment file; and Dr. Hamilton's employment file ready for my repeated review.
Let me know when they are ready for me to examine.

And tell Le Hegarty that I await his explanation that the Sunshine law says he owes this citizen for why he will not reveal to me the names of the administrators whom he cultivated in his application for his position.

Tell him to ask for an opinion from Attorney General Crist on his obligation in this request.

I am sure Le Heggarty wants to behave in a manner coincident with the Sunshine law.

lee drury de cesare

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Darling Luke, La Gaceta's new terminally cute Cutie Pie, etc.,

You get no slack on quotation marks. And cut the charm riposte. I come from White Oak, Georgia, where the filling-station gallants hone their charm spiels whilst in perpetual residence in our small-town garage-culture graduate school of seduction. Listening to these insinuating louts inoculates us belles for life from the magnetic spiels of less gifted practitioners, of which consider yourself one.

Any more displays such as you have perpetrated, and you sleep with the Tampa Bay fishes or, worse, get perpetual reporter duty as scribe to the Hillsborough County Commission's colloquies--a fate worse than Satre's Huit Clos hell.

You get to use quotation marks sarcastically one time per column and then knock it off. Why? Because I said so. Your mother taught you the no-appeal-to-a-higher-court finality of that command. Heed it. So don't try to work your way up to the sympathy of those sexist twits Scalia, Thomas, and the last two patriarchal anti-choice ding-dongs that Bush inserted on the bench.

Subsequent use of quotation marks except for one grace time per column suggests you lack the cajones (sp?) to spit out what you mean. Not following this advice from your GFG (Grammar Fairy Godmother) invites major repercussions. Caveat emptor: Her wand is a Obi Wan Kenobi zap apparatus.

And cut out the logorrhea. That gets a GFG wand zap henceforth.

I will not tolerate my Roslin buddy Andrea's getting buried in the back-pages truss ads of La Gaceta after my First-La-Gaceta-First-Amendment Martyr glorious exit. You can't prance on the page next to Patrick's--prime real estate for the in-house columnist star, formerly glamorous moi. When the local illiterati finish Patrick's lucubration, their eyes swing right to the star columnist essay. That's my old slot. My readers used to complain that they had trouble with some of my words, to which I responded, "Look them up, goddamit, and become a polymorph." See: I too can be charming when need be.

When did I tell you that you could hole up next to His Hiney, Patrick, and push back Andrea to truss-ad-land? I did not. So you do not nail down that slot. Fugedaboutit.

Every time Patrick buried me in the back-pages limbo to replace me with, for God's sake, "Pachero's Dreams," I squawked. So work out some kind of gallant understanding with Andrea, or meet me in the La Gaceta parking lot for probono fisticuffs.

And don't go easy on me because I am a girl, lack upper body strength, and am, besides, a sweet little old lady and granny of ten, seven of which are strapping boys who will clean your legal clock if you touch a snow-white hair on their sainted granny's head.

Have a nice day, my son. And review my to advise me how I can phrase some insult to the school administration to goad those dummies who have captured the school-taxes treasury for their vile uses into suing me for slandering their non-existent virtue. I pine to spend the rest of my life in the pokey as a First Amendment martyr, from which I shall give benedictions through the bars to First-Amendment pilgrims, I pausing betimes from needlepointing another wedding rug for my granddaughters to tell my ACLU vassal to fetch me another cup of chamomile tea.

Your benevolent when she's not malignant GFG,


----- Original Message -----
Angie Manteiga
Lee De Cesare
Sent: Friday, June 16, 2006 10:02 AM
Subject: FW: A Rebellion To Free Quotation Marks
See how charming this guy is?

From: Luke [] Sent: Thursday, June 15, 2006 8:17 PMTo:; 'Angie Manteiga';;;;;;;;;;; 'Paul Guzzo'Subject: A Rebellion To Free Quotation Marks

My Dearest “Fairy Godmother,”

Please accept this Post Script to my earlier plea of nolo contendere to the charges of being grammatically “impressionistic.” I must tender a follow-up to my earlier mea culpa, specifically as to the following excerpt of your respectful and warm critique, to which I endeavor to submit a “change of plea”:

“Since I have pledged to become the grammar-punctuation fairy godmother of the press, we must talk quotation marks. They have limited use. You went as berserk with them in your first column almost as badly as does superintendent Dr. Clayton The Quotation Kid Wilcox of Pinellas County. This second column is not as bad as was the first, but quotation marks still clog it.

“Reread the small section on quotation marks in your grammar primer. You will see that your overuse of them to flag words in a special sense far exceeds the leeway of that quotation-marks resource. I suspect your resorting to quotation marks means you intuit that there exists a better word than the one you gussy up with quotation marks but that you are too hubristic, incurious, or lazy to take the time to discover the right word for the occasion. As Twain said, ‘The difference between the right word and the almost right word is the difference between lightning and the lightning bug.’”

After much soul searching, research, and not without hesitation, fear, horror, terror, fright, trepidation, consternation, anxiety, dread and apprehension, not to mention anatomically reflecting a certain “tightness” in areas I dare not mention, I urge you (ever so cautiously) to reconsider your castigation over “quotation marks.” Most of the “learned treatises” to which you refer fail to embrace the robust satisfaction one feels, and communicative value one effects, by using quotation marks to manifest a mild sarcasm otherwise left void in the vapid vacuum of grammatical constraints. I do not desire to vex or vent to such a venerable visionary as yourself, but the use of quotation marks (excluding the physical two finger gesture of “scratching the air” during conversation, unacceptable at any time) is a vehicle to vanquish the vassalage of the verbal vise. It is a practice neither vain nor vague, never vulgar nor villainous, but conveys and vocabulates a valuable vibration unachievable through any other punctuation. You da best, Chica, but cut me some slackage on the quotizzle, capizzle?

Love, Luke

Wednesday, June 14, 2006


Trysting Teachers Caught In Act

Ms. Linda Kipley, ill-equipped honcho of the Professional Standards Torture Chamber:

One infers you sped to Coleman Middle School to review government submissions' detailing the event of classroom fornication viewed by curious students through a peephole.

Fornication was a lapse in professional standards to be sure. So you would be on the case in a millesecond with your constant sniffing of the wind to discover even miniscule slip-ups teachers may stumble into. You don't ever see any administrative sins against professional standards--even those right under your nose, one notes; but you seek out or manufacture breaches' requiring punishment for teachers.

Look what you did with feeble rationale to torture teachers. You eked from the fugitive dimensions for misconduct the instance of teacher Shawree Miller's taking children to see a university with parental permission. You treated Miller's taking the children on an educational trip as a violation of district professional standards' deserving your whole range of Abu Gharib torture tactics for the hapless Miller. You colluded with a Captain-Queeg principal who wouldn't have teacher Pat Barton's classroom cleaned until parents complained, and then you participated in cooking up charges against Barton with Principal Queeg in some kind of Freudian retaliation scheme. Your own conduct is not merely unprofessional. It is vile. It is inhumane. Principal Queeg awaits diagnosis.

There exists no administrative detailed statement that defines and illustrates instances of professional- standards violation. You make them up as your inflamed imagination dictates or as Ms. Elia fancies the chance to flex her new administrative muscle to scarify a media specialist like Bart Birdsall to accomodate County Library head Joe Stines's grudge against Birdsall for his sending Stines critical emails from Birdsall's home computer. Even the Board attorney told you that was Birdsall's First-Amendment right, but you went through the charade of trying to scare him to death anyway.

Your ultimate scare tactic is the threat of firing. This is the threat that cows people into silence even when your mistreatment of them becomes outrageous. You told Barton that she was not to tell anyone about what was going on in your little torture chamber for teachers. Have you never thought that even teachers have free-speech rights?

All it would take to close you down, ma'am, is for half dozen teachers to get fed up and march into a Board meeting and report their disgrutlement with your behavior, abetted by the adminstration to keep people quiet. The elected Board could not afford to ignore them. The public loves teachers. It does not love administrators. It does not love School Boards.

With your eternal vigilance, why did you let slip past your manic scrutiny in birddogging of the Coleman incident a school document containing the following solecisms that appeared on The Smoking Gun on the World Wide Web?

“…Ms. Bowen stated that prior to Ms. Sepulveda [sic] calling…”

There should be an apostrophe after “Sepulveda” for possessive before the gerund.

“…that Ms. Sepulveda also seemed stressed out, [sic] because…”

There should be no comma after “out”: the trailing adverbial clause is restrictive.

“Upon inquiry, he stated that there was nothing going on between he [sic] and Ms. Sepulveda.”

Egads! This "between he and Ms. Sepulveda" sounds like Dogpatch. The “he” should be “him”: pronoun object of the preposition should be objective case.

A home economics degree is not adequate preparation for your job. It's adequate preparation to make flapjacks, but it is not adequate preparation for the skills a professional-standards director needs. We see this lack on the World Wide Web this morning as yet another illustration why you should not be the head of Professional Standards with a bloated $120,000 salary. You don’t know basic grammar and punctuation and let such howlers as the above find their way into The Smoking Gun to disgrace the school administration of Hillsborough County.

The School Board shares the disgrace as well. It should because it allows--with no advertising of the position in accordance with the Board's "equal-opportunity" spin--you, an incompetent, home-ec candidate, to appropriate a job that needs sophisticated literacy skills and psychological skills as a minimum. The Board rubberstamped your professional-standards job without competition. It approved the administration buddy-hiring system. So the Board is complicit.

You lack the education and judgment for the head job in Professional Standards. Many candidates would have had in abundance skills requiredc not to let an illiterate document mar the HIllsborough County school district's image on the Web had the Board insisted that the job be advertised coincident with the Board's Title VII equal-opportunity promise.

Resign from a job which you got with no advertising in defiance of Title VII. Resign because you don't have the literacy level to spot whopping grammar-punctuation errors in school-generated reports that pop up on The Smoking Gun and in other venues that confirm the illiteracy of the school administrative staff. Resign also because you torture teachers for bagatelles but let Dr. Lover Boy Hamilton get away with posting illiterate, vulgar emails on the school email system.

But before you exit, find out if some of those curious Coleman students could transfer for physical ed credit to do peeping duty in the ROSSAC building, the locus of the famed Casting-Room-Couch according to rampant gossip. We voters want some of those alert youngsters to peer into ROSSAC windows, especially the paper-covered-windows.

Give the youngsters credit in PE for this valuable service that exceeds the skills of the administrative terrified enablers who people the nooks and crannies of ROSSAC and never peep into door-access little windows.

lee drury de cesare


Editor, Le Bastone, Smoking Gun:

One sees you have the major posting on Coleman Middle School teacher sex on your web site today. I lived in the area. In fact, my four children and one of my granddaughters attended Coleman.

Primitive sexism continues apace with Smoking Gun's posting a picture of the female and beautiful Spanish teacher but not the male. In contrast, the coach lurks without his mug shot plastered on the web: faceless in double-standard shadows. His participation, however peripheral, in sports gives the fellow an extra layer of macho-gladiator-guy protection from you reverent, pencil-pushing, computer-pecking New York City peckerheads.

Hovering in the penumbra of this sexist omission are ancient slanders about female sexual insatiability that feed prejudices of women as Jezebels, Occasions to Sin, Floozies, Temptresses, Hussies, etc. These scapegoating insults have metastasized in male imaginations since Yahweh and the primal patriarchal brotherhood framed Eve in the Garden of Eden and exonerated feckless Adam. Men have been projecting their sexual guilt onto women ever since.

Male sexual anxiety is everywhere. Until I complained, there remained on the books in Tampa an ordinance that made it a crime for a man to walk on the public streets "with a known prostitute." No ordinance existed for the men who cause prostitution to be a growth industry. That's because the prostitutes made them do it, and the enforcement of the ordinance would have emptied the streets of male traffic.

Becket pushes the envelop and even says in Waiting for Godot that men are "born astride the grave." This extreme male fear of female sexuality's engulfing power over men explains coaches' superstition behind their injunction that football players can't have sex the night before the big game.

That's a lovely tapestry of misogyny you've manufactured from your sexual ambivalence and insecurities, fellows, especially so since this despised half of the human race includes your mother, your sisters, and even your dear old Aunt Bea, the avatar of the best apple pie on the planet and the fluffiest biscuits.

The unspoken assumption of your posting a picture of the woman but not the man in the present instance continues the venerable and despicable libel that the woman made the guy do it.

So The Smoking Gun and its "'cool,' frat-boy editorial staff perpetuate this moss-grown canard by mounting a Web color picture of the woman while the man finds photographic refuge in the treehouse of male blame-the-girls-for-illicit-sex-they're-all-hookers-at-bottom racket that has gone on since the beginning of time.

Shame on you gutless sexist twits in the Smoking Gun Male Sweat Lodge on 3rd Avenue in reputedly sexually sophisticated NYC for scapegoating women the same way men scapegoat them in this outback in which I live. May cow dung be rained on your prematurely balding heads and may you become Cialis- dependent before your 30th birthdays. And may the sexually lethal Aunt Bea--that lascivious old Jezebel-- have made you your last fluffy biscuit.

Viagra and Cialis--the perpetual-erectile-dysfunction nostrums--have become women's Thank-you-Jesus-and-Pfizer-for-making-the-chickens-come-home-to-roost by TV-ad-outing of the sexual angst that pulls the rugs from under insecure misogynists such as you feeble macho specimens at The Smoking Gun. Na, na, na, my buckoes. The greedy drug companies have blown your baby-baby-don-t-get-hooked-on-me cover, and all us women--including even the silliest girls-- know it.

It remains only for us post-erectile-dysfunction-culture Valkyries to do the mopping-up operations, of which pray consider as one this email from a member of The Sisterhood. This is one of the jobs of which equality of the sexes requires completion. We women are always the clean-up half of the human race--the half that washes the dishes, cleans the toilets, and slops the hogs but, thank you, Goddess Girls of the empyrean, doesn't depend on Viagra for sexual animation.

That you boys deficient in male chivalry are are also deficient in commas comes as no surprise. I see women do graphics for The Smoking Gun, but none exists elsewhere in The Smoking Gun Sweat Lodge to fix the punctuation.

See your mess-ups below. Such illiteracy on the World Wide Web ranks worse in my book than classroom pedagogic sex’s providing peeping opportunities for Coleman teenagers at their curious time of life about this fascinating subject for them. My only regret is that there are no such peeping teenagers on the prowl in the administrative ROSSAC redoubt in downtown Tampa. Persistent gossip makes me infer the youngsters would find ample opportunities to observe casting-room-couch primal scenes and other titillating scenarios in the administrative breastwork of lies and cover-ups.

Needless to say, your mug shots should get prompt posting on your site for this sin against womankind, not to mention the punctuation errors.

See me in my office after class, all of you Smoking Gun acne-ridden poseurs. Bring your grammar and your ethics primers and a penitent demeanor.

lee drury de cesare (Ms)15316 Gulf Boulevard 802Madeira Beach, FL 33708
The Smoking Gun brings you exclusive documents--cool, confidential, quirky--that can't be found elsewhere on the Web. Using material obtained from government and law enforcement sources, via Freedom of Information requests, and from court files nationwide, we guarantee everything here is 100% authentic.

The commas are both redundant, Smoking-Gun scholars manqué. Your commas cut off restrictive adverbial prepositional phrases.

The site was founded in April 1997. In December 2000, The Smoking Gun was acquired by Court TV, a basic cable network with more than 80 million subscribers.

The passive verbs reveal that The Smoking Gun provides tree-house locker room retreat to a bunch of insecure frat-boy wussies who as we speak are reading up on the pharmacopoeia of Viagra juvenile-strength performance enhancers. Eve and her progeny have insisted that the boys lay hold of these aides for the sexual comfort of womankind.

Is there any reason besides ignorance that the Smoking Gun swashbucklers manqué don't italicize TV shows?


Editor: William Bastone

Managing Editor: Andrew Goldberg

Reporter: Joseph Jesselli

Design: Barbara Glauber & Beverly Joel / Heavy Meta

Technical assistance: Mike Essl

Los Angeles correspondent: Samuel Bretzfield

Development Director: Daniel Green


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