GA is very, very saddened to hear of the sudden passing of local genius/political humorist, Dean Kemph.
My sincerest condolences to his family and those who knew him, loved him, respected him. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers.
In tribute to Dean below, GA will republish one of his brilliant, hilarious takes on Hoboken politics that Grafix Avenger originally published on April 27, 2010. It's called, " A word of political praise from Citizen Dean..." In my last Facebook exchange with Dean 11 days ago, I recited a line from his piece and wrote: "See, I remember that line 6 years later, that is how good it was."
The subject of Dean's wry observations was Hoboken411 political ghostwriter Lane Bajardi; specifically, Bajardi's appearances at Hoboken City Council and the Hoboken Board of Education to protest content on this blog.
Dean's commentary addressed how Bajardi carried around color copies of a political graphic* he had downloaded from Grafix Avenger to public meetings to pass out to Councilpersons and BoE Trustees. (In 2012, Bajardi and wife Kim Cardinal, would sue almost 2 dozen Hoboken Reform bloggers claiming to be "defamed" by their political free speech. They lost and were ordered to pay their victims' enormous legal fees).
*the illustration protested BoE candidates' call to let a federal stimulus grant expire instead of using it to buy laptops for students.Dean Kemph's 2010 essay responded to these two unhinged public performances:
Here is it is:
A word of political praise from Citizen Dean...
While my candid comments on the Hoboken political scene have been deservedly cast as generally critical, often questioning the judgments and motives of competing factions, I do feel compelled upon occasion to give credit where it’s due. So today I extend congratulations to Lane Bajardi, who recently garnered the coveted Disorderly Person distinction from local law enforcement authorities; thereby gaining official recognition for the title he has informally held for the past year. The events leading to this honor were generally inspired by his obsession with his latest raison d’excrement, the poop pics which he now carries on his person like a naval officer with the nuclear codes. Unfortunately, his efforts to display the offending graphics have not met with widespread enthusiasm; rumor has it that he has even been unable to convince Beth Mason to take a gander. His inability to impact the indignation index at the Council meeting only fueled his outhouse outrage, and he barely had his hand into his briefcase/surrogate toilet before he was unceremoniously dumped from the BOE meeting. Understandably, he has fared even less favorably setting up his overhead projector on the dinner party circuit.
While I applaud the courageous imperviousness to crap that Lane displayed during the mayoral run, I also caution Mr. Bajardi that others are not always similarly inclined. Regardless of the public’s sensibilities towards the subject graphic parody, it may be time to realize that his campaign has not demonstrated much citywide…er…movement. The townsfolk seem to be suggesting that the last thing they need is Lane Bajardi intentionally attempting to trigger the collective repulsion reflex; possibly feeling that he has done that enough inadvertently. With so much left to complain about, the town needs his undivided attention focused on general criticism before he tailspins forever into the bowels of this one issue. Despite this setback, I remain confident that Lane will be able to flush it from his system and come up smelling like a rose.
Nobody wrote sharper, funnier political satire than Dean Kemph.