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Greensburg Laurels & Lances

| Thursday, May 23, 2013, 8:55 p.m.

Lance: To wet-noodle justice. John W. Bennish of Hempfield pleaded guilty to breaking into the apartments of two coeds, allegedly stalking them, in a case described by a prosecutor as one “where the hairs on the back of the neck stand up.” But as a punishment, and supposedly a deterrent to like-minded individuals, Westmoreland Judge Debra Pezze sentenced Mr. Bennish to, in effect, five days in jail, plus nine months' house arrest and two years' probation. Why not just take him behind the courthouse and lash him with a wet noodle for all this sentence is worth?

On the “Watch List”: “Monessen Rising.” Even if by some miracle Monessen raises $8.5 million to match a portion of $30.5 million in public funding, which officials say is needed to convert the city into a modern-day artists colony, it's still a fool's bargain. Never mind who's going to buy this grossly subsidized housing and put down roots in Monessen. All this might make for good reality TV — as suggested by some plan proponents — but it's an absurd and unacceptable reality for Pennsylvania's taxpayers.

An observation: The Westmoreland County Democratic Party's inexorable march toward irrelevance continued Tuesday. These pathetic politicos had the best candidate for judge in Bill McCabe in the primary, facing two Republicans. But Dem Chairman Dante Bertani's gang couldn't get Mr. McCabe nominated to the Dem ballot in the fall. Incumbent Democrat row officers should start worrying about November.

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