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Farrell Keough

September 8, 2015
Stay out of my business
Farrell Keough


With Fall almost upon us, the smells from Session in Annapolis are welling up from their depths. To take a quote from a President Franklin Delano Roosevelt speech, ‘the only thing we have to fear, is politicians in session.’


August 11, 2015
Just How Business Friendly Will Frederick Be?
Farrell Keough

It’s a new day in Frederick County (and now the City of Frederick) as our new government seems to be moving toward a ‘business friendly’ environment! This move is so replete with ironies that it is difficult to take it seriously.

August 13, 2013
A Little Advice
Farrell Keough

As a registered Unaffiliated, it is reassuring to see the Maryland Republican Party beginning the process of reaching out. In a recent email, Chairman Diana Waterman indicated the MD GOP is establishing a committee to “investigate allowing Unaffiliated voters to cast ballots in the Republican Primary along with Republicans – not Democrats.

May 14, 2013
Disarming The Obama Administration
Farrell Keough

A number of emails have been received (and forwarded – please check before you do this) that claim President Barack Obama has signed over 900 Executive Orders with additional emails claiming one of these orders institutes Martial Law.

April 30, 2013
“It’s going to be a bumpy ride…”
Farrell Keough

I resign!

March 19, 2013
Sea Change or Hurricane?
Farrell Keough

We are once again seeing politicians, statesmen/women, and various wonks telling the Republican Party and other conservatives how to act and run their campaigns – yes, it is CPAC time!

March 5, 2013
The Continuing Erosion of Freedoms and Liberties
Farrell Keough

We, as a nation have bought into the proposition that when real or faux problem arises, new legislation must be written in an effort to find a solution. The problem: many times additional laws/regulations only harm law-abiding citizens, and often the new legislative actions are reactions to fix poor legislation.

February 19, 2013
A Conservative’s Epiphany
Farrell Keough

Having reached an epiphany, it is time to set the record straight – the liberal/progressive ideologies work, and they are superior to the tired old methods of the past.

February 5, 2013
Sneaky Ways to Control The Environment
Farrell Keough

“The most productive days of most legislative sessions are the last three or four,” [Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley (D)] told reporters… in Annapolis. Productive is most certainly in the eye of the beholder, but one must remember the impact of bureaucrats once new laws have been enacted.

January 22, 2013
Judge Stands With Farmer in Manure Suit
Farrell Keough

In a Baltimore Sun Letter to The Editor, it was established that “the University of Maryland Carey School of Law Environmental Law Clinic offered pro bono, (without compensation for the public good) legal services for the Waterkeepers Alliance” in 2012.

January 8, 2013
A Solution to “The Problem”
Farrell Keough

In a rare moment of unintelligibility, the wife (She Who Must Be Obeyed) agreed to go out on New Year Eve to a club a friend of ours manages. It was a most engaging evening – we saw old friends and met many new ones.

December 18, 2012
Emotionless Discussion A Necessity
Farrell Keough

In the wake of the horrific tragedy last Friday, new gun control measures will be undertaken by Congress and likely on a state level as well. Much like the Patriot Act of 2011, emotionally-based legislation will be thrown about in the vain attempt to regulate evil.

December 4, 2012
Over The Cliff and Into The Woods
Farrell Keough

We’ve recently been discussing the issues surrounding how to handle our government shortfalls. Some of this includes what is often referred to as “austerity” measures. Truth be told, that is far too simplistic a definition, but one that plays well in the press and with many of our elected officials.

November 20, 2012
Charter Forcing Necessary Decisions
Farrell Keough

We’ve got an upcoming decision to make in Frederick County due to the passage of the new charter – who will be our first county executive? This person will represent the ideology and vision of Frederick County and hopefully influence the direction of our government for years to come.

November 6, 2012
…and here’s another country heard from…
Farrell Keough

Today is our opportunity to make our voices heard – in Maryland, that is truly meaningful! <insert sarcastic comment here >

October 23, 2012
Political Polarization: That Is The Question
Farrell Keough


As noted by Harry Nilsson, oh, so many years ago, “a point in every direction is the same as no point at all.” In other words, when someone espouses a general viewpoint that covers all possible positions, it is often the case they are saying little to nothing.

September 25, 2012
A Different Choice
Farrell Keough

It has always been the case that “dog catcher” is one of the most coveted elected positions in government. Individuals will quit their jobs, mortgage their homes, and spend each and every day going door-to-door to be selected to oversee such a prestigious position of service.

September 11, 2012
Wise Decision, Outlook Excellent
Farrell Keough

Our county commissioners recently appropriated $100,000 for Wells Fargo based on a deal the State of Maryland worked out to hand the bank $1 million to keep them in Maryland. This was based on an agreement made seven years ago under a previous Board of County Commissioners.

July 17, 2012
Welfare Reform Down The Drain
Farrell Keough

Whether President Barack Obama wins or loses in this year’s election, we can expect more "policy directive" changes to our existing laws. Late last week, yet another of these occurrences took place with respect to the Welfare Reform of 1996 under President William J. Clinton.

July 3, 2012
The Better of Two Worlds
Farrell Keough

The recent tax rebate of $100 from our Board of County Commissioners has created a tremendous stir. Some have argued that the county should keep this money and decide on which non-profit(s) to fund.  Others have suggested the cost to mail out these refund checks is excessive.

June 19, 2012
Aspire to Greatness or Denigrate That Goal?
Farrell Keough

We are immersed in what so many label “the silly season” of politics. While glib, this truly does not capture the essence of the bifurcation of our party system seen today. Truth be told, we are in the realm of Political Absolutism – no gradations – only this view or that and nary the twain shall meet.

June 5, 2012
What’s the real purpose?
Farrell Keough

As the septic bill passed in Annapolis, it seems to be a done deal – yet people are still writing letters to the editor and discussing the repercussions. Might it be that, like the computer (IT) tax bill, this could be rescinded due to its negative effects? While doubtful, let’s consider some aspects about this bill.

May 22, 2012
Dogs v. Economic Security
Farrell Keough

Between the sensational talk of eating a dog versus abusing a dog, we might hear a reasonable argument about how to handle our national economic woes. With this in mind, let’s arm ourselves with quick review of two currently discussed perspectives.

April 24, 2012
Energy Subsidies: Not What They Seem
Farrell Keough

It has recently been in vogue to claim our fossil fuel producers are rolling in profits due to government subsidies. While our nation faces serious fuel cost increases, the solutions don’t lie in proposals to increase costs.

April 10, 2012
Society’s Issues Driving Us and the Election
Farrell Keough

While discussing politics with a friend, the issue of social conservatism came up. Generally, when people hear that topic, they think about sex and the current issues of government enforcing religious organizations to pay for birth control and abortifacients.

March 27, 2012
The Road to Revival
Farrell Keough

As I have said in the past, ‘we needed Jimmy Carter to get Ronald Reagan.’ President Carter’s Administration handled our economy, foreign relationships, energy, and the myriad other aspects so poorly that the entire nation was ready for a person of real vision and integrity to take over the reins.

March 13, 2012
Citizens Say Maryland Declining
Farrell Keough

The new Citizen Opinion survey on the State of the Government from We The People of Maryland is devastating. The results from the almost 2,500 responses show a powerful trend indicating the O’Malley Administration is moving in the wrong direction.

February 28, 2012
What or why does it matter?
Farrell Keough

Innovation is the lifeblood of business. If a company is not flexible enough to keep up with the times, it will wither and die on the vine. Kodak is a prime example of a company which allowed changes in technology to push it out of the market.

February 14, 2012
Two Out of Three IS Bad
Farrell Keough

Three candidates of interest are running for the Maryland 6th District: Congressman Roscoe Bartlett, State Del. Kathy Afzali, and State Sen. David Brinkley. Two of these candidates are running on platforms describing themselves as Constitutional Conservatives, while the third is actually running on his own record.

January 31, 2012
A Viable Alternative
Farrell Keough

Chris Van Hollen has been our Eighth District Congressional Representative since 2002. During his time in Congress, Mr. Van Hollen has consistently voted with the Democratic Party machine almost 99% of the time.

January 17, 2012
The Argument for Slots
Farrell Keough

In our current environment, we are seeing new taxes under all sorts of rubrics. For instance, we have paid dearly over the years for our roads and highway systems – yet, today, we are facing newly designated tax schemes like Toll Roads.

January 3, 2012
The Value of Anonymity
Farrell Keough

In a recent Hagerstown Herald-Mail news report, “Del. Neil C. Parrott, R-Washington, wants petitions for referendum in Maryland to be granted the same secrecy as an individual person’s vote.”

December 20, 2011
Problem? Here’s the solution(s)….
Farrell Keough

As noted in the many writings of Thomas Jefferson, these United States are composed of “little republics” – those communities which create the backbone and strength of the nation as a whole.

November 22, 2011
“Torment For Our Own Good”
Farrell Keough

“That’s not fair!” “Because we know the parents won’t do it, so we must integrate these programs into the school system.” “If we cut back on that program, children and seniors will likely go without food.”

November 8, 2011
Change for The Better?
Farrell Keough

It is a commonly held proposition that if you want less of a thing, tax it. While this often works in practice, there are historic instances when taxation was necessary to cover extraordinary costs.

October 25, 2011
Death Defying Regulations, Higher Taxes
Farrell Keough

Recent events make clear what is going on in Maryland and how our state is trying to cover up their policies which are detrimental to business.  The bribing of Bechtel to remain in Maryland is just one example of how these principals will play out.

October 11, 2011
Whining and Complaining All Over Again
Farrell Keough

Many a scholarly discourse has been promulgated about the various Occupy Protests taking place around the nation. Most either walk lightly around the activities taking place or compare the protestors to groups like the Tea Party or the protests of the 60s. Balderdash!

September 27, 2011
Vetting The GOP Candidates
Farrell Keough

As noted by radio talk show host Mark Levin, there are not just two candidates running for the Republican presidential nomination – Saturday’s victory by Herman Cain in the Florida Straw Poll verified that point!

September 6, 2011
Politics Driving Backdown on Environment
Farrell Keough

Might this current administration have seen the light? A “Gallup survey from March showed that Americans prioritize economic development over environmental protection at a rate of 54 percent to 36 percent – the widest margin since Gallup first asked the question in 1984.”

August 26, 2011
Invasive State Control of Growth – Part 4
Farrell Keough

In reviewing Gov Martin O’Malley’s PlanMaryland proposal, we have but one remaining area to cover. We have seen six others areas and how this proposal might affect Marylanders:

August 25, 2011
Invasive State Control of Growth – Part 3
Farrell Keough

In our continuing conversation about of the governor’s PlanMaryland proposal to restrict land use, we now move forward to analyze two areas directly affecting every Marylander.

August 24, 2011
Invasive State Control of Growth – Part 2
Farrell Keough

Yesterday we began a conversation on the O’Malley Administration’s proposal entitled PlanMaryland. We covered two areas: Unmanaged Development and Smart Growth as driving factors to promote and justify this plan. We saw that the crisis portrayed about growth is not quantifiable by the actual data and the public is not embracing the concepts of Smart Growth.

August 23, 2011
Invasive State Control of Growth – Part 1
Farrell Keough

For the next few days, we will review a new proposal from the O’Malley’s Administration entitled PlanMaryland. This plan has far-reaching consequences and should be thoroughly reviewed before any type of implementation.

August 9, 2011
Forward … for The Taxpayers
Farrell Keough

Some of you may know that I am on the board of We The People of Maryland. This is a non-partisan 501(c)(4) corporation with a focus on education and a mission to promote the economic engine of Maryland.

July 26, 2011
A Path to Financial Stability
Farrell Keough

Our nation faces serious deficit-debt negotiations – something we are seeing on the state and local levels as well. The outrage, (feigned or real) in the recent Board of County of Commissioners is evidence of events yet to come. It is likely our national leaders will not come together before August 2nd to determine a remedy.

July 12, 2011
Mr. Public, if you please…
Farrell Keough

In these mid-summer months, one would think things would slow down and backyard barbeques would be the only game in town.

June 28, 2011
Privatization: Another View
Farrell Keough

Once Hennypenny realized “the sky was falling,” she immediately went forward to tell the King. Having met up with Cocky-locky, Ducky-daddles, Goosey-poosey, and Turkey-lurkey – they all decided to hurry together to inform the King of the dire circumstances. Problem was, as wise and helpful as these avian creatures were, Foxy-woxy had other plans!

June 14, 2011
No Winners in This Battle
Farrell Keough

Recent events have been used to portray the county commissioners as not caring about seniors or small towns. Why should the truth get in the way of a good story?

May 31, 2011
Inspection Privatization: Good Idea or Bad?
Farrell Keough

When a company increases a cost, they must weigh the benefits as they will lose customers if the costs become too high. When a government raises a cost, we the taxpayer suffer the penalty with few options, (short of moving) available to us – we cannot walk down the street to another government office competing for our business.

May 17, 2011
Class Size Fallacy – Good Teacher Certainty
Farrell Keough

A new mitigation proposal for the Frederick County Adequate Public Facility Ordinance has been proposed. While some in the public are adamantly opposed to this proposition, it does offer something we have not had before – a mechanism to pay for school renovations and remodeling.

May 3, 2011
Challenging Flawed Legislation
Farrell Keough

Let’s cut to the chase – the bill passed last month by our General Assembly, Public Institutions of Higher Education – Tuition Rates – Exemptions (SB 167/HB 460), not only contravenes federal law, but it harms all citizens in the State of Maryland – both personally and financially.

April 19, 2011
Unintended Consequences Abound – Again
Farrell Keough

The current Ethics Commission Advisory Opinion – commonly known as the decision affecting the actions of Frederick County Commissioner Kirby Delauter – is not only the worst of “behind closed doors” bureaucratic actions, but negatively affects every resident of Frederick County!

April 5, 2011
On Responsibility
Farrell Keough

With less than a week left in the General assembly’s 2011 session, many people believe sine die will be the end of this year’s legislation. Not so. Lest we forget, there was a census last year and now we face the repercussions of that counting.

March 22, 2011
Clouding Legislative Transparency
Farrell Keough

It is likely the bill on septic systems before the Maryland General Assembly will be remanded to Summer study, but that is by no means the end of this draconian proposal. Truth be told, this is not really about septic systems per se; it is much more about promoting the ideology of Smart Growth.

March 8, 2011
Just Who Is A Stakeholder Here?
Farrell Keough

So, what is going on in Annapolis these days? Most people know the budget is in desperate straits. Some people are even aware there were votes on Gay Marriage recently.

February 22, 2011
Getting What You Voted For
Farrell Keough

So, many remarkable occurrences are taking place throughout the nation, state, and locally. While our 24/7 news would have us believe many of these events are happening with a rapidity never seen before – in truth, our federal legislators are but “sound and fury, signifying nothing.”

February 8, 2011
Addressing School Needs vs. Development
Farrell Keough

A great treat exists for you people this week – please avail yourselves of the opportunity! At The Buzz, (Green Valley Center in Monrovia) you will be able to enjoy the Farrell Keough sam’ich!

January 25, 2011
The Two Faces of Alex Mooney
Farrell Keough

Our local ex-Senator Alex Mooney is at it again! He is injecting himself where he does not belong and is playing his same dirty politics, (to his benefit) after being in office as chairman of the state GOP for only one month!

January 11, 2011
Diagram of The Road Less Traveled
Farrell Keough

Where do we go next? That really is the issue with both the TEA Party and the seeming shift in the Republican Party.

January 4, 2011
What would you change?
Farrell Keough

It is a New Year and time for new ideas to move forward. In that vein, I contacted a number of people throughout the community and gave them one question: "If you could 'magically' change one thing at the local level of our government, what would it be?"

December 31, 2010
Enough with the Resolutions…
Farrell Keough

While thinking about the New Year, I did a search on the “The Top 10 Resolutions List” using Google. Since I am so limited in my own ability to generate new and interesting thoughts, I figured I should go with my strengths and use someone else’s work. So, here goes, the Top Ten with my comments…

December 28, 2010
The New Political Highway
Farrell Keough

Had a most interesting Christmas dinner with friends – we talked about business and the potential changes coming in the future. Our friend has a rather amazing product and it should make for great profit as well as adding real value to our local and national infrastructure.

December 14, 2010
The Devil’s in the Details
Farrell Keough

When we were last together, we noted that a change in the economy may drive our political choices – good, bad, or indifferent. When we are ‘fat and happy,’ we often do not keep track of what is going on with our politicians, government agencies, or new legislation.

November 30, 2010
The Government’s Shell Game
Farrell Keough

With the upcoming economic boost – I speak, of course, about the annual slog to buy, buy, buy things – it may be a an interesting time to reflect on how this may portent future events.

November 16, 2010
The Tides of Change
Farrell Keough

Had a nice break after the elections, hope all of my 12, (including family) readers missed me! It is back to the grind and the work to keep this Republic on the right course.

October 19, 2010
Screaming Into The Wind
Farrell Keough

Oh, the joy of ‘negative campaigning’ is upon us! We are all getting slick colored letters telling us how terrible this or that candidate is or how harmful this or that slate will affect our county. And, since we are sheep, we know these negative mailings are absolutely correct! Phish posh!

October 5, 2010
Considering Your Governor Choice
Farrell Keough

When we were last together, we discussed some musings on the attempts to bring the various candidates under the Republican rubric together in unity. We noted a mechanism which could be used to make a clear statement to those in our party who do not follow a course of decency and integrity – the under-vote. Low and behold, this precise mechanism was used in this last primary.

September 21, 2010
Tough Decisions Still Ahead
Farrell Keough

It is kumbaya time! The primaries are over and we all are supposed to come together to support those who have won! That is how it has always worked and by-gum, we’d better get on board!

September 9, 2010
Political Musings
Farrell Keough

With the primary right around the corner, the nastiness of various people vying for election has shown itself to be very active. A number of emails, fliers, radio spots, and direct mailings have shown just how far some people will go in an attempt to elevate themselves by denigrating others.

August 24, 2010
Purist v. Pragmatist – A Choice
Farrell Keough

Politics is the art of influence, wise compromise, and understanding how to use these two to accomplish one’s end. When we consider the leaders we have esteemed over the centuries, the traits which propelled them always involved the tension between influencing the opposition and wise compromise.

August 13, 2010
In our school system, who works for whom?
Farrell Keough

In my previous column, the “informational briefing for candidates” running for the Board of County Commissioners was discussed. While this program has its own issues, it pales in comparison to that run by the Frederick County Board of Education!

August 10, 2010
Intimidation in the Wrong Place
Farrell Keough

There comes a time when our politicians simply become too comfortable in their positions. Rather than focus on their constituents, they move forward with actions to their real or perceived benefit.

July 27, 2010
Two for the Road
Farrell Keough

This column may come as a shock to some, as it will be about Those People!  In fact, it will not only be about Those People, but will actually promote a couple of Those People!

July 13, 2010
Admonitions for Candidates
Farrell Keough

The term “smoke-filled room” is generally attributed to the election of Warren G. Harding, our 29th President of the United States. President Harding was generally considered one of our worst Presidents due to the many instances of graft within his administration.

June 29, 2010
Watch Carefully and Learn
Farrell Keough

We are coming to the 11th hour for people to register and run for office in this year’s elections. Once everyone’s name is out there, the smears and rumors will start. All it takes is an innuendo that so-and-so was involved in this-or-that to make the public question their integrity or standing in the community.

June 15, 2010
Preparing for The Smell Test
Farrell Keough

If tomorrow were Election Day, who would you vote to represent you? Most of us have our jobs, careers, or businesses to run and have not given the various candidates much thought.

June 1, 2010
To Unseat Senator Mikulski
Farrell Keough

“Side-effects include delayed backache.” Honestly, what the heck is that? Personally, I would love to be able to delay my bouts with backaches. But, I digress…

May 27, 2010
Abrogating One’s Due Diligence
Farrell Keough

Back at the beginning of this month I wrote a column on the BP oil platform explosion in the Gulf of Mexico. On April 30, 2010, the initial action taken by the Obama Administration was sending lawyers to New Orleans (Reuters) eight days after the explosion.

May 18, 2010
Political Spin and Quelling Discussion
Farrell Keough

It seems that every time we come into a political season, or when an important piece of legislation is presented, the hue and cry of civil discussion arises. Someone will say exactly what is on their mind and others will chime in that the words used are too harsh. Pollucka!

May 4, 2010
Send in The Lawyers
Farrell Keough

According to Reuters, “Attorney General Eric Holder said on Friday he was dispatching a team of lawyers to New Orleans to monitor the oil spill and that the Obama Administration would vigorously enforce environmental laws.”

April 27, 2010
Usurping Our Rights
Farrell Keough

Our nation was founded on a number of philosophic precedences that were unique to this nation – one of the most important being the right to property, (whether physical property, intellectual, or the payment of our labors) which equates to liberty. In short, unlike other nations, the rewards of our labor are ours to keep and do with what we please.

April 20, 2010
So, what do we do?
Farrell Keough

Well sine die has passed and once again, our one party rule in Annapolis has won the day! In short, little of value got passed, but somehow more funding for programs and organizations damaging to Maryland slipped through.

April 6, 2010
A Dynamic Transformation
Farrell Keough

We have seen a tremendous sea change in the Board of County Commissioners of late. Much of this is due to the newly appointed Commissioner Blaine Young.

March 31, 2010
The History of Health Insurance – Part 2
Farrell Keough

Yesterday we reviewed both the government and private market responses to the nation’s insurance needs. Now we shall see if the actions of the past are a precursor to the present and future happenings with our new healthcare law.

March 30, 2010
The History of Health Insurance – Part 1
Farrell Keough

Many articles and commentaries are floating around about the newly passed healthcare law. It is worth our time to review how we got to this point and what the pitfalls were in the creation of insurance programs in the United States.

March 23, 2010
A Sad Truth – A Day of Mourning
Farrell Keough

Sunday’s vote on healthcare, not only screwed up our capitalist system, but it also wreaked havoc on my intended topic for a column!

March 11, 2010
To Arm or Disarm – Part 3
Farrell Keough

Yesterday we discussed the Respondent’s (the lawyer supporting the Chicago position) current 2nd Amendment case before the Supreme Court of the United States – McDonald v. City of Chicago.

March 10, 2010
To Arm or Disarm – Part 2
Farrell Keough

Yesterday we discussed some of the background of the current 2nd Amendment case before the Supreme Court of the United States – McDonald v. City of Chicago.

March 9, 2010
To Arm or Disarm…
Farrell Keough

There is a new argument before the Supreme Court of the United States – McDonald v. City of Chicago. The arguments hinge on keeping the status quo versus integrating an “innovative” approach which could have far reaching effects on both state and national laws.

March 2, 2010
A Proper Budgetary Alternative
Farrell Keough

A friend of mine has a home on the corner of a busy road. Because of this, he is able to sell a myriad of things in his front yard – from cars to lawn mowers to any number of items.

February 23, 2010
Exceptions Legislation and Charles Jenkins
Farrell Keough

Two bills which are currently active in our Maryland General Assembly need your support. One will be heard today. Take some time to send your representatives an email!

February 9, 2010
What a hometown….
Farrell Keough

Why is it that when it is cold out, people want a nice cool drink after working outside – but when it is hot out, they don’t want a warm drink after working outside?

January 26, 2010
The Cart Before The Horse…
Farrell Keough

Our delegation to Annapolis has recently voted to endorse a pilot program for a Pay-As-You-Throw (PAYT) trash mitigation system. Will this program help mitigate the tremendous amount of trash we send to the landfill and potentially save our citizens money? Let’s explore some of the possibilities.

January 12, 2010
To Abide By The Constitution or….
Farrell Keough

This is actually the second column and submission by Delegate Don Dwyer of Anne Arundel County on this topic. The initial column spoke to the need for Mayor Sheila Dixon to be removed from office based upon a clear reading of the Maryland Constitution.

December 29, 2009
A Man of Integrity – or Not…
Farrell Keough

While this should be a time of writing about family traditions or various ideas for the New Year, another pressing issue has arisen that requires our immediate attention. Del. Rick Weldon, (3B) has announced he will not complete his term, hence a replacement must be chosen by the Frederick and Washington County Republican Central Committees.

December 16, 2009
Getting There The Hard Way – Part 2
Farrell Keough

Yesterday in this space we discussed some of the political and consensus aspects to long-term transportation planning. We will now pursue some of the myths that surround transportation and determine some of the factors necessary to develop solutions to these problems.

December 15, 2009
Getting There The Hard Way – Part 1
Farrell Keough

My time as chairman of the National Region Transportation Planning Board Citizens Advisory Committee is coming to an end – thank heaven they do not give out business cards, as this would be about the size of a bumper sticker – must be a government thing.

December 1, 2009
For Better or Worse?
Farrell Keough

We’ve all seen and heard the current brouhaha’s within the Board of Education, but have we been able to follow the alternatives presented to this group for better educational choice and potential savings?

November 24, 2009
The Pain of Taking a Break
Farrell Keough

I have been on hiatus. I would say sabbatical, but that involves payment during the absence and considering the vast sums we are paid here at, how could one possibly expect our esteemed editor to pay us when we are away?

October 20, 2009
Another Governmental Boondoggle
Farrell Keough

As predicted one year ago, the Office of Sustainability is working toward growth even in these most dire of times.

October 6, 2009
Remembering The Forgotten
Farrell Keough

I recently got back from Iowa. I would have invited you, but they were full.

September 22, 2009
Beware The Quiet on Carbon Dioxide
Farrell Keough

Might the EPA being covering up information pertaining to Global Warming? How could that possibly be true – this is a cabinet level agency whose sole interest is protecting American citizens by ensuring the environment receives the attention it deserves.

September 8, 2009
Exposing the Real Agenda…
Farrell Keough

Now is the summer of our discontent – made glorious winter by this sun of the Statis. Shakespeare may not have been pleased, but my literary license is paid in full and allows for such word play.

August 11, 2009
Cause, Effect, and Solution
Farrell Keough

We have seen this scenario played out before – in fact, the Holy Bible speaks to third generations not embracing the religion of their parents. In short, it is the values, traditions, and work ethic of our parents and grandparents being pushed aside for a more progressive vision.

July 28, 2009
The Eyes of the Beholder
Farrell Keough

What an interesting week of racism. First we had a non-hearing on the confirmation of a proposed Supreme Court justice. And most recently we had the President of the United States defending a Harvard scholar for incendiary statements toward a policeman. It seems we have finally reached a point where racism is acceptable in some circles, as long as it is the ‘right’ kind of racism.

July 21, 2009
Who brought the canards to this party?
Farrell Keough

Many of us have known people who married the person involved in the break up of their marriage. We have also seen this situation in which one or the other in this new marriage cheats again. It is a difficult situation, but one with which a person has to wonder, why would you trust someone who has a known history of cheating or breaking vows?

July 14, 2009
Looking at The Future
Farrell Keough

Been watching a local election with great interest recently. Noticed one very poignant aspect – there are two basic types of candidates: Fixers and Visionaries. It will be interesting to see who the voters decide on.

July 2, 2009
Non-Answers and Squirrelly Financing
Farrell Keough

The Frederick County Board of Education had a televised meeting on June 10, 2009. During that meeting, many things were discussed including re-districting and the budget. It is the latter for which we will focus our discussion today.

June 16, 2009
Simple Answer, Complex Solutions
Farrell Keough

Much discussion has been taking place surrounding the subject of Smart Growth. New plans for zoning, building, growth, and government regulations.

June 2, 2009
A Common Sense Approach to Moderates
Farrell Keough

On a recent radio talk show, I was referred to as a moderate. While the comment was meant as a compliment, being a staunch conservative, I took umbrage toward the implication. This led to a conversation about the meaning of moderate and something that seemed timely for an article.

May 21, 2009
The Cradle of True Leadership
Farrell Keough

I enjoy a number of talk radio shows from our local ones to Rush Limbaugh and Mark Levin. Of course, these national shows have a strong leaning towards conservatism. I am okay with that.

May 5, 2009
'...and awaaaaaay we go!"
Farrell Keough

"I guess there is nothing that will get your mind off everything like golf will. I have never been depressed enough to take up the game, but they say you can get so sore at yourself that you forget to hate your enemies." - Will Rogers

April 21, 2009
A Call to Arms…
Farrell Keough

I had the privilege of attending the Frederick County Tea Party. While neither man will accept the credit, great thanks goes out to Blaine Young and Bob Miller of WFMD radio, 930 A.M. That attendance on such an awful day to be outside was remarkable!

April 7, 2009
The Saga Continues…
Farrell Keough

A sad situation is unfolding in our local Republican Party. I very much cherish and respect our party, and it is due to that regard that I feel it is important to let you know the situation. You can make up your mind as to how you believe this should play out.

March 24, 2009
When a Tax Cut Isn’t
Farrell Keough

What is truth in politics? Is it something black and white; or are there varying degrees of gradation? Obviously it is the latter. Hence the need to research and understand what is stated versus what the realities behind the action are.

March 10, 2009
Misinformation and Playing Politics
Farrell Keough

Some interesting events have occurred over the last few weeks that are seemingly disparate, but in fact, have many commonalities. The main connection is the discussion of the Waste To Energy (WTE) plant.

February 24, 2009
Random Thoughts
Farrell Keough

Last time we were together, we discussed the plan by the Frederick County Board of Education to continue on its path to build their Taj Mahal in downtown Frederick. Since that time, I have received a copy of a soil analysis on the property. The levels of arsenic and mercury were well beyond acceptable health standards.

February 10, 2009
From Awful to Worst
Farrell Keough

The Board of Education is moving full force to ensure their new Taj Mahal is going to be built. They have used many mechanisms to side-step the tough questions and portray things in a good light. In short, we have not been given the full and accurate truth.

January 27, 2009
Raise Your Voices…
Farrell Keough

A new president and a new session for the Maryland Legislature – what more could a columnist ask for? Uh… substance?

January 13, 2009
Missed Opportunities? Perhaps!
Farrell Keough

If you wake up tomorrow and go out to warm up your car before leaving for work – you could be facing a $60 fine and one point on your driving record. This is yet another sign of not actually thinking through an idea, and what unintended consequences are.

December 30, 2008
Terminology and Political Correctness
Farrell Keough

This is the time of year when resolutions are made and broken.  I shall attempt to follow in that hallowed tradition. “Eat and drink whatever you want.” The beauty of this resolution is that soon you will not be able to afford it, hence you will diet and sober up whether you want to or not.

December 16, 2008
More Regulations, Less Result
Farrell Keough

When we were last together, we discussed the iconic imagery subtext replete within the film It’s a Wonderful Life. The pleonasm of this previous discussion was self-serving and self-evident, yet constructive in its perspicacious appraisal.

December 9, 2008
Who Thought This Up?
Farrell Keough

Why is it that It’s a Wonderful Life seems to continuously play from Thanksgiving until Christmas Day? Is this some evil plot by Big TV to drive us crazy during this season? Or is it some other ghastly plot of excess?

December 2, 2008
Change! It’s Everywhere! It’s Everywhere!
Farrell Keough

As a new year is dawning, many issues and perspectives are drawing near in our political arena. We have a “change” coming on our national front – but we must remember that our state representatives will be meeting in the near future and may be offering us “change” as well.

November 18, 2008
A Once-A-Year Happening
Farrell Keough


“[A]m I my brother’s keeper?” This was the statement Cain gave to God when questioned about the location of Abel, whom Cain murdered. It has become part of our cultural colloquialisms – generally applied when asking about our responsibility to help others.

November 4, 2008
Local Issues ARE Important, Too
Farrell Keough

What an interesting time slot to post a column. Today we engage in one of our most auspicious rights – the ability to vote for our representatives. Good luck!

October 21, 2008
Walking The Economic Line
Farrell Keough

Times are tight and even the government is recognizing the need to cut back – or at least, appear as if they are making budget cuts.

September 23, 2008
Demand Answers, Expect None
Farrell Keough

When Congress, the president, and the Federal Reserve come together to make a huge new plan with very little dissent or public discussion, it is time to worry. That is what occurred last weekend.


September 9, 2008
Scaling The Abyss
Farrell Keough

Many have heard or read about the new math system being instituted by the Frederick County Board of Education. This program, TERC (now called Pearson Math Investigations) has a poor foundation and virtually no books or parent involvement. In short, the child taught under this program will fall well behind within a few short years.


August 26, 2008
Community Action: Good and Bad
Farrell Keough

It used to be that a handshake or a person’s word was their bond. While some may argue that this is just simply our memories of a past gone by, many still know people who, when they tell you they will do something, it gets done! In short, people of integrity.


August 12, 2008
Perception Often Worse Than Truth
Farrell Keough

Perceptions are a tricky thing. There are times in life when a person can feel so strongly about a situation they are willing to suffer the consequences of people believing they are either wrong or have some nefarious intent.


July 29, 2008
To Implement Justice – or Not
Farrell Keough

A recent conversation on the radio piqued my interest. A regular Tentacle columnist and our 3-B delegate to the General Assembly, Rick Weldon, talked about the decision facing Gov. Martin O’Malley on the death penalty.


July 15, 2008
A Beautiful Friendship?
Farrell Keough

So many interesting events have taken place since my last entry here that it was difficult to decide what to write about. But, a Herculean accomplishment is taking place within this county, and it needs to touted.


July 3, 2008
Recycling’s Flip Side – Part 3
Farrell Keough

Recycling is not the simple toss-it-in- the-blue-in-and-save-the-planet activity that we generally believed. While it has value, we have seen that it is not the panacea generally ascribed. Today we will consider a few of the existing situations which strip away the benefits attributed to recycling.


July 2, 2008
Recyclying’s Flip Side – Part 2
Farrell Keough

In yesterday’s column we reviewed some basic information on recycling. We determined that while tossing our plastics in the blue recycling bin may make us feel as if we are saving the planet, it may be we are using substantial resources to produce products we buy back which are no longer recyclable.


July 1, 2008
Recycling’s Flip Side – Part 1
Farrell Keough

Is recycling a misnomer? In other words, do we actually recycle our waste and containers; or do we just transport them to someone else and feel good about our actions?


May 20, 2008
One Problem, No Single Answer
Farrell Keough

When we were last together, we discussed a presentation given to the Farm Bureau on nutrient problems in the Chesapeake Bay. Since that time, a number of rebuttals have been made with respect to the comments. Here is a brief commentary on some of those points.

May 7, 2008
Improving The Chesapeake – Part 2
Farrell Keough

Yesterday we explored the health of the Chesapeake Bay. We noted various terms like Point Source and how Atmospheric Deposition can break down into those constituents which are to blame for the algae blooms and low oxygen levels within the Bay.

May 6, 2008
Improving The Chesapeake – Part 1
Farrell Keough

We are facing yet another crisis. The Chesapeake Bay has algae blooms and low dissolved oxygen levels. After years of studies, programs, and billions of dollars, it seems we cannot prevent this body of water from being listed on the impaired waters list of the Clean Water Act.

April 22, 2008
Keeping the Basket Full
Farrell Keough

I have the great privilege of enjoying a variety of friends. It is likely that my ability to keep and keep up with these people is more a tribute to my wife, (She Who Must Be Obeyed), than to my sterling personality.

April 17, 2008
Flies in The Ointment…
Farrell Keough

Zero Waste or Zero Landfill is a somewhat new catchphrase gaining use in our lexicon. Let’s be clear, there is no such thing as Zero Waste. Sooner or later, virtually every product we use becomes waste. To believe any different is to fool yourself.

April 8, 2008
How to Avoid Getting Run Over…
Farrell Keough

Sometimes you are the bug and sometimes you are the windshield. It seems that recently we taxpaying residents of Maryland have been the bug. Of course, this covers a multitude of sins.

March 25, 2008
You Can’t Get There from Here
Farrell Keough

Recent articles on the Transportation Planning Board for the National Capital Region studies indicate that solutions to our road congestion are still very much in limbo. Ideas like Private Toll Roads, (HOT Lanes and such) may not offer the solutions people were hoping to see.


March 18, 2008
Taking Up The Banner …
Farrell Keough

My computer has been trashed; I allowed someone else to use it and a program was downloaded that hacked my system. For me, this is a painful process as I use my computer regularly to communicate with folks, look up information, post my viewpoints on issues, etc. But, it also gave me an opportunity to view some of the issues of illegal immigration in a new light.

February 26, 2008
A Crack in The Door
Farrell Keough
Over the next few articles, we are going to explore the issues and possible solutions to illegal immigration. During this process, we will ensure correctness of documentation as well as making certain we are not allowing a sense of racism to infect our perspectives.

February 12, 2008
Our Most Important Election Isn’t for President
Farrell Keough
On February 5, your plucky columnist put together a forum at the Urbana Volunteer Fire & Rescue Station for the Board of Education candidates seeking to gain a nomination today for a seek on that body. An impressive array of candidates showed up and spent three hours taking on questions and listening to others.

January 29, 2008
A Labor of Love…
Farrell Keough
Breaking News: Group able to accomplish acquiring and building football field for local children without government help.

January 23, 2008
A Funny Thing Happened on The Way…..
Farrell Keough
A funny thing happened to the Resource Conservation Zoning areas the other day – they got a reprieve from potential damage by the Board of County Commissioners. But, only a reprieve. These zoned areas and the rules surrounding them are still on the altar of political distortion.

January 15, 2008
What’s Behind This Moratorium?
Farrell Keough
To moratorium or not to moratorium; that is not necessarily the question. Whether ‘tis nobler in the mind to suffer the traffic jams and loss of beautiful landscape, or take action against our development issues and end them…

December 24, 2007
Family Traditions – Old and New
Farrell Keough
Think back to those exhilarating days just prior to the big event; the chill in the air; the anticipatory extra step in your gait; the constant talk among your friends as to what you might find on that oh-so-special day.

December 20, 2007
Why Be a Republican? – Part 3
Farrell Keough
When the pin is pulled, Mr. Grenade is not your friend. [U.S. Marine Corps]

December 19, 2007
Why Be a Republican? – Part 2
Farrell Keough
Aim towards the Enemy. [Instructions printed on U.S. Rocket Launcher]

December 18, 2007
Why Be a Republican? – Part 1
Farrell Keough
What is the similarity between an air traffic controller and a pilot? If a pilot screws up, the pilot dies; if the air traffic controller screws up…, the pilot dies. [Anonymous]

December 4, 2007
Editor's Note:
Farrell Keough
(Editor's Note: Farrell Keough's column, which would normally appear in this space today, is delayed by a fractious nuisance called illness. It will appear later this week.)

November 20, 2007
Turkey and a Bitter Pill
Farrell Keough
With Thanksgiving quickly approaching, it is a time of reflection for us all. Family, friends, health, rights, and many other freedoms we enjoy and should be thankful to have in this most incredible of nations. Only because we were fortunate enough to have God’s blessing and be born in this country do we have the bounty of these privileges and the freedoms that accompany them.

November 6, 2007
“I’m mad as Hell….”
Farrell Keough
Of late, I have gotten responses to my columns that fall into two camps; some have told me they were a nice, condensed view of facts surrounding issues and others have said I need to lighten up and write to a lower level of education. While I appreciate receiving input, (good or bad) it is this latter perspective I would like to tackle.

October 30, 2007
An Inescapable Conclusion
Farrell Keough
We have come a surprising distance on our road towards "Enlightenment." If you will remember, we began our discussion recognizing the truths of our honorable Montgomery County Executive, Democrat Isiah "Ike" Leggett informing us on how our enlightened leadership has made Maryland a sanctuary for illegal intruders.

October 23, 2007
The Power of The Courts
Farrell Keough
During our last time together, we discussed how "Enlightened Maryland" has become. We give away our taxes, our services, and even our children's education to illegal intruders in deference to a more enlightened way of life.

October 16, 2007
A Blight on Enlightenment
Farrell Keough
As many of you are aware, we are in the midst of a rigorous paper tiger fight over how to deal with a huge influx of illegal intruders. Some have the audacity to believe we should view this circumstance as a problem. Nothing could be further from the truth.

October 2, 2007
Opposing Views, Good Policy
Farrell Keough
A funny thing happened on the way to the Editorial Store. I got replies to my inquiries and did not have to make a purchase. No really, there is an Editorial Store! But they are expensive and have terrible business hours.

September 25, 2007
Both Sides Now
Farrell Keough
Global Warming, Global Cooling, Climate Change, et al are the headlines of the crisis de jour. Most people do not involve themselves in this debate as it seems too complicated and all the scientists agree, so it must be true.

September 4, 2007
The Path to Change
Farrell Keough
The paradox of white blindness and an inability to acknowledge minorities as people is one of the real life problems set forth in the book White Guilt - How Blacks & Whites Together Destroyed the Promise of the Civil Rights Era by Shelby Steele.

August 14, 2007
Sound Character Building
Farrell Keough
Those halcyon days of summer are quickly coming to an end. The lazy days of little responsibility, long evenings of late sunsets, and friends available at all times of the day. Yep, just around the corner is another year when school books and dirty looks will abound.

August 7, 2007
Dealing With Illegal Immigration - Part Two
Farrell Keough
In yesterday's column a discussion of the effects and various legal perspectives on illegal immigrants was presented. Although this looming crisis seems at times insurmountable, we must remember that we live in a nation with a ".government of the people, by the people, for the people." [Abraham Lincoln, The Gettysburg Address November 19, 1863]. To that end, we have some legal remedy and fortunately a sheriff with the strength of character to adopt this redress.

August 6, 2007
Dealing With Illegal Immigration - Part One
Farrell Keough
Recent conversations on illegal immigration, and mechanisms to address this looming crisis, have spawned a number of statements and editorials of late. People are pushing various agendas from taking pity upon those who came into our nation illegally to provide for their family, to rounding up everyone in a fashion similar to the Japanese internment camps of WWII.

July 31, 2007
Supporting The Arts
Farrell Keough
They say the measure of a society is the support of its arts. While that is a rather narrow definition, it does hold some significant insight. Art is both a reflection of what is, but can also touch upon what could be.

July 17, 2007
The Growing Chasm
Farrell Keough
Our "smart growth" Board of County Commissioners is at it again. Rather than a thorough and thoughtful approach, the heavy hand of government approach is once again the chosen tool of enforcement.

July 3, 2007
Back to the Future
Farrell Keough
The call to return to the "theories" of the 1960's and 70's is being heard loud and clear. Blame and victimization are making a comeback.

June 19, 2007
To Pay and To Protect.
Farrell Keough
Much ado about nothing. Well, sort of. The change in the Frederick County Sheriff Office with respect to off-duty officers hit the fan last weekend. I guess it was a slow news day or someone wanted to stir up trouble.

June 5, 2007
Remembering Fathers
Farrell Keough
"If the new American father feels bewildered and even defeated, let him take comfort from the fact that whatever he does in any fathering situation has a 50 percent chance of being right." - Bill Cosby

May 22, 2007
Send More Cash or Trim The Fat?
Farrell Keough
In April, I wrote an article on the state's budget and slots, (Robbing Peter to Pay Paul). I recently referenced that article on a forum where the discussion of slots came up. I was rightly asked, "Well smarty-pants, we know what you don't like. What would you suggest to fill this $1.5 billion dollar shortfall?"

May 8, 2007
"The Play's The Thing"
Farrell Keough
"These darts and arrows will pierce my outer shell, but will not disparage the contents within." Developcus from Shakeyspeare's Urbania, Act 17, Scene 11.

April 25, 2007
Like Lemmings to the Sea – Part 2
Farrell Keough
In yesterday’s engrossing piece of journalism (oh right – boring), I pointed out the misuse of science and the willingness of the media to promote an agenda. I have also discussed correlative science and the need to recognize it is a projection of risk and not an absolute proof of cause and effect.

April 24, 2007
Like Lemmings to the Sea
Farrell Keough
“In this hard hitting piece of journalism, Farrell Keough, winner of the Mercurial Award for Writing, takes on both Big Government and Big Tobacco! You think Jack is something on “24? Just wait until Farrell hits the streets.” XYZ News Service International

April 10, 2007
Robbing Peter to Pay Paul
Farrell Keough
The state can quit anytime it wants. It just never seems to want to quit. So far this year Maryland will be tapping into the "rainy day" fund and the only option for the future is raising taxes.

March 27, 2007
Make the Check Payable to...
Farrell Keough
Who pays for newbies? Well, they pay for themselves., uh, right? It depends upon who you ask. Most new residents to the Frederick area are rich, self-absorbed, transplants from Montgomery County... right? Well, some may be.

March 13, 2007
This Crow Tastes Terrible
Farrell Keough
Well, I did it. And it wasn't pleasant. Now, I have a plethora of excuses: I had surgery on both knees and was on medication, we are having remodeling done on our house, and it has been a mess to work and live in, my parents never showed me any affection. Okay, that last one isn't true.

February 27, 2007
"Wealthy" Citizens Raided Again
Farrell Keough
As said by Satchel Paige, "Sometimes you need to sit and think, and sometimes you need to just sit." Not sure which of these I was doing the day I heard about this, but I realized that I, (like you) have far and away too much money. I also recognized that I, (like you) have no earthly idea as to how to spend that incredible extra income correctly!

February 13, 2007
The Devil In The Details
Farrell Keough
I am in Florida - it is probably raining, but I can only hope the cold streak is still holding there in Frederick. I mean, what good is it to pay for a trip to a warmer place, then come home to find you cannot lord it over your friends, family, and loved ones? Sheesh!

January 30, 2007
Charter Me A Government
Farrell Keough
I was sitting around with some old friends, drinking a couple of beers and discussing politics – something we are wont to do on occasion. After discussing the big issues we wondered what Hillary’s “conversation” in Iowa would be? I mean, she does seem to know cattle futures, but what about corn and John Deere?

January 16, 2007
To Better Serve
Farrell Keough
It seems one of our members of the Board of County Commissioners "needs" a special computer to allow him to represent his constituency more effectively.

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