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WELCOME TO THIS EDITION OF:

THE VEGAS WATCHDOG
NEWS & REPORT

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The # 1 Vegas Watchdog and Las Vegas TOP DOG, Mayor Oscar Goodman, both agree and proclaim Las Vegas as "The Greatest City In The World" during a VH1 Music TV taping outside the Channel 8 CBS studios.

The Vegas Watchdog gives the Mayor a four wag rating out of a possible five wags. Bravo, Mr.Mayor! All of us working together can make a tremendous difference in preserving our beautiful Valley and all its adornments at their peak.

The Duties Of Each Official Vegas Watchdog Are:

AWARENESS:

Be aware of ALL that is happening around you by keeping your eyes and ears open and your nose to the ground to identify any suspicious person or actions that in your opinion may endanger any part or individual in the Las Vegas Valley in any way at all. Use sound judgment before sounding an alarm. Do not take matters into your own hands.

CONTACT THE PROPER PUBLIC SAFETY OFFICIALS WITH YOUR INFORMATION AND LET THEM DO THE EXCELLENT JOB THEY DO IN ELIMINATING PROBLEMS AND UNEASY SITUATIONS.

And, please stay out of their way once you have contacted them. Your job is to only be a Watchdog and warn the powers that be of possible danger. Don't growl or bite, just watch and warn. You would be very surprised what a major difference your participation in the Vegas Watchdog project will make in assisting public officials make this an even better place to live.

ENCOURAGEMENT:

An uplifting word or deed offered voluntarily to residents and visitors alike will cover a vast number of tense feelings that do linger in the hearts and minds of all Americans after the terrible events that happened in our country on September 11, 2001.

If ever in our nation's history have we needed to show concern and goodwill toward those in our city, state and country, NOW IS THE TIME.

Opening doors for folks, letting them get in front of you in traffic without getting angry, saying "thank you" or just responding respectfully at an appropriate optional opportunity, telling someone you know or don't know at all what a great job they are doing and that you appreciate their service to the community or just simply, "SMILING" at someone you meet on the street or in a store in a manner that let's them know you are a human being and you are glad to be in their presence.

An encouraged person will strive to reach higher goals peacefully and with a greater sense of joy. And it is almost impossible for an encouraged person not to "Pass It On" to others. What a fantastic environment of positive emotions and attitudes we would all be benefiting from if we only made "ENCOURAGEMENT" a priority with every person who crosses our path daily. Real Watchdogs encourage others.

UNITY OF PURPOSE:

Here lies the key to making it all work. All Vegas Watchdogs are looking out for the needs of others as it pertains to safety, protection and achievement of the best possible standard of life available in our community. Commitment to finding the right common denominator with each person will produce a closely knit feeling of unity of purpose with almost everyone.

The 1960's song said, "United we stand and divided we fall". So as Watchdogs, we must be keenly in tune with every effort we possibly can make to join together in heart and spirit with all those who live or visit our great valley.

Our purpose is to make everyone we can feel at ease and willing to act in harmony with the workings of our community. This will make it much easier for us Watchdogs to spot those who march to a different drum and do not desire to help us build a better Las Vegas, but whose objectives are totally the opposite.

Vegas Watchdogs must try and unite as many folks as possible in our never ending search to identify everyone and everything that would cause us not to accomplish our purpose to make Las Vegas a better place tomorrow than it is today.

But when you Watchdogs do spot that "party-pooper", your job is to ONLY CONTACT THE PROPER OFFICIALS IN PUBLIC SAFETY AND LET THEM TAKE IT FROM THERE.

AWARENESS, ENCOURAGEMENT and UNITY IN PURPOSE are the first priorities of ALL VEGAS WATCHDOGS in our effort to make sure that when someone on the other side of the globe hears the name of our city or just thinks of where one might go to have the most fun on earth he or she can only be drawn to plan his or her next vacation to THE ENTERTAINMENT CAPITAL OF THE WORLD....."Las Vegas, Nevada USA!"

Publisher's Mission Statement:
Beware all of you who dare to do any less than your best in making the Las Vegas Valley the greatest place on earth to live! The Vegas Watchdog is on full alert and will either growl, bark, bite or just wag his tail once he has observed, reviewed and accessed the actions of anyone who might make Las Vegas "less" safe, secure or protected.

Truly, "Las Vegas people depend on each other. We're one big family and everybody's your brother. Helping our neighbor is the lesson we teach. And here in Las Vegas, we practice what we preach." This is taken from the first part of The Vegas Watchdog's new song called, "Las Vegas People". You'll find the rest of the song on this site in the coming weeks. It is definitely one of the most unique places to live on our planet.

WATCH OUT FOR YOUR ATMs

As an unhappy customer a short while back I wrote the following letter to SAVE-ON DRUGS, a division of ALBERTSONS in Boise, Idaho. Keep your eye on how employees treat you and how they value your use of your ATM cards while giving out wrong information about banking procedures.

The time was about mid-afternoon:

Dear Corporate Offices:

I purchased two $1.00 pkg. of cookies and two $.88 Pepsis at your Save On in Vegas at W. Sahara and Valley View.

The cashier was a heavy set middle aged female with glasses and short hair. Her attitude was aggressive and huffy as she rang it up. As I went to swipe my ATM card, she bit my head off telling me that I'd have to use a credit card. I had the MasterCard symbol on my ATM and she said with gruffness to "just swipe it".

I said I did not want to do it if the money was not going to come out immediately like with the ATM card. She grabbed my card and swiped it through assuring me that it would come out just like the ATM. Then she mumbled something about the wires were down and I couldn't use the ATM now.

But I did not wish to use the credit card and she had already swiped it. To not cause a scene I put in the pin and stupidly believed her as I hit "enter". I asked again if it would come out IMMEDIATELY and not next week sometime as the credit card processed. She again assured me "Yes, it would". I should have just walked away if I did not like it and not have been intimidated by her angry attitude.

If she had told me before she rang up the items that I could not use the ATM card, I would have preferred to just come back later. Now, my bank of 6 years ALWAYS takes out the monies immediately and that keeps my balance current.

BUT NOW, it is not as your employee told me at all. There is not even a record in my online account showing there has been any transaction. And I should mention that she took it out of my hand from her side of the counter and swiped it TWICE. Does that mean I will be charged twice? I only signed one piece of paper.

I am not a happy camper at this point and want to know if this type of employee is setting your new standards for customer service? If so, adios.
http://vegaswatchdog.com

PLEASE TAKE THE WATCHDOG'S ADVICE AND KEEP YOU EYES AND YOUR MIND ON WHAT HAPPENS TO THAT ATM CARD WHEN SHOPPING IN STORES LIKE THE ONE IN MY LETTER WRITTEN ABOVE

IT'S YOUR $ MONEY $!!!

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LAS VEGAS MAYOR HOT OVER GLOWING CONGRESSIONAL REPORT ABOUT YUCCA MOUNTAIN!!


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DOES THIS DOG BITE?!?
ONLY THE BAD GUYS!

GRRRR---I'm Telling Who's Naughty or Nice!!!

Whether you are a business, organization or just an everyday citizen of the Vegas Valley, THE VEGAS WATCHDOG will be barking up your tree to let the world know the quality of your contributions to the people who live, visit and work in THE ENTERTAINMENT CAPITAL OF THE WORLD!

If you feel you have personally been ripped off or just feel like some one has not received the appreciation deserved for their excellent work in the Vegas Valley, then please email THE VEGAS WATCHDOG at:

Email: realwinner@vegaswatchdog.com

and give me all the details to check out.

Email: signup@vegaswatchdog.com

Then you will receive the weekly email highlights free of charge that will allow you to choose which featured stories might be of most interest to you. Don't forget to email THE DOG if you are hot on the trail of some critter who stepped on an innocent bystander.

This Valley is a great place to live and work and it is about time that somebody---GRRRRRR----started putting the bite on those who are abusing Vegas locals and visitors. And it is even more important to be sure the little guy is acknowledged for everyday accomplishments that make all of our lives just a little bit nicer. THE DOG IS WAITING TO HEAR FROM YOU!!!

And now here is this week's column

STRAIGHT FROM THE DOGHOUSE:

JUST CHEWING ON A FEW BONES: by V.W.D.

WHOOPS! The Dog has spotted some folks here in the Valley that have just plain dropped the ball and are not very good examples of the Best of Vegas.

HERE IS AN OPEN LETTER I WROTE TO THE D.O.T AND SEVERAL OTHER MEDIA GROUPS
Be sure and let me know your experience with the CAT people

DAILY TERROR ON THE CAT BUS:
(or)
PLEASE LET THE PUBLIC KNOW WHAT IS REALLY GOING ON Before everyone starts crying over a strike!

+++++++++++
Hi,

My wife and I live in Las Vegas and have chosen at times in the past few years to use the local bus system rather than our own vehicle. As you know the CAT system is partial funded in part by Federal funds and displays warning signs on each bus about any abuse to a bus driver being a federal felony.

The dozens of incidents that have happened to us and many others who ride these buses are much too numerous to list here. In the past I have called the local bus administration office to state my grievances in hope of resolution, but the best I am offered is that my call will be written on a post card form and forwarded to the person in charge of that part of the bus system operations. It is 100% "pass the buck" 2002.

There are abuses against handicapped residents, buses that just skip a time pickup listed on the printed schedules they sell and some drivers who pull up to stops and let passengers out and shut the doors on people who have been waiting to board for over an hour. Then the bus will just take off leaving the disappointed passengers who are trying to get to work or to go home after a long day at work.

All of this type of action has been hard to swallow up until now. But today, May 9, at 10:15 AM, as my wife and I had just been seated on a transfer to our destination where my wife had an important appointment scheduled at 10:30 AM just a mile ahead on the bus route. Immediately behind us was an Afro-American seated with a large radio and not in anyway bothering anyone. Then a white guy stood up and yelled that the Afro-American turn off his radio cause he was not going to put up with that ( multiple racial slurs ) and turn it off or he was going to .....blah blah blah blah blah.

We tried to ignore it but the interaction became loud and as they stood up to square off. Then two or three others got into it with them with the violent volume of pushing and shoving reaching a dangerous level. The back of the black guy was only 6 inches from me as I was trying to protect my wife just waiting for the push and shove to make contact with us.

With all of the yelling and cursing and threatening at peak levels, the bus driver continued to stay seated for two, three even up to four minutes. With the posted federal law on any type of abuse to a bus driver, we could not understand why there was no driver to at least call them down.

Finally, the female driver who was over 55 and not the timid type came to the scene of the problem. She first told the white guy to get off the bus. He said the other guy was at fault for playing his radio ( which we never heard as we were sitting right in front of him ). So the driver told the black guy to get off the bus. They both fired off loud, abusive language at her and she said she would just get off the bus herself and have a smoke. So then the two guys and about five or six others started going at it stronger. I braced for the necessity of having to defend my wife as we were blocked in the seats due to all the action in the aisle.

The white guy yelled for the bus driver to call the supervisor. Big deal! Call some guy 20 miles away on the bus phone when we were only seconds away from total war? She came back on the bus and called the supervisor ( NOT the police who could have straightened it all out in short order ). When we saw this was all she was going to do, we squeezed out of the bus along with everyone else. I asked the driver why she didn't call the cops. She answered that this kind of thing happened "everyday that she drives the bus for $6.50 @ hour". So obviously the bus company policy is to avoid calling the cops and to put ALL PAYING PASSENGERS in a life or death situation.

We all got off the bus and another bus on that route came up and we were told to get on the new bus. OKAY!

We all loaded up and guess who else piled on? The same two idiots that were causing the problem before. They pushed their way right on and started it all again in the doorway. Call the supervisor? Why not call the cops since they had abused the driver and that is a posted federal regulation punishable by jail and cash payment? So the war began again in front of our eyes with a new middle aged blond lady with glasses standing in the aisle telling the white guy he was not going to get by her. This was a real push and shove with the lady about one second away from having her face redone when two big guys stepped in front of her and told the white guy, "NO WAY are you going to push and punch on a lady". So the idiot pushed by to get to the middle of the bus right next to us once again.

Everyone then rushed for the front exit while the man kept ranting and raving and we were motioned to return to the first bus again. We loaded up and here comes the idiots toward our bus. And we had to pay for this circus?

Somehow, someone got the white guy's attention to come back to the second bus while the black guy just walked across the street with his radio. The bus doors shut and we were off to a new bus stop where tons of angry riders were waiting. But this time, the original driver passed out a handful of complaint forms to a half dozen guys who were in the midst of it all from the start. So we all sat there and waited until it all started moving again.

We got off a few blocks down the way and felt very lucky to have survived a terrible incident like this. But remember the driver told me that THIS happens EVERY DAY. And no cops are called. Only supervisors who must write it all down on a post card and forward it to the "pass the buck" file.

A while back I was told by the bus lady in the main office that if I had problem I could come to a monthly meeting of the board downtown and if there was time left at the end of the meeting, the board might allow a few comments to be made by those in attendance. Does this sound like abuse to the public with no recourse to you?

Last summer when it was 120 degrees in mid afternoon, my wife and I were waiting for a bus scheduled to come in only 15 minutes taking us to a business engagement on the Las Vegas Strip. We were waiting with about 25 other folks including an older black lady with crutches and she had to be at least 80. The bus did not show up in 15 minutes. The driver just decided to miss that hour's stop. It came over one hour later with now about 50 people standing in the boiling weather. The old black lady looked like she was on her last leg as she stepped up slowly on the bus to put in her money for the ride. She very softly asked the driver what had happened. The driver chewed her out unmercifully and told her to shut up and get in a seat if she wanted to ride.

This lady was not hostile, but hurt. She sat half way back and mumbled a few words about contacting the mayor and bus officials. She did not yell or threaten the driver. You would have had to listen with good ears to have heard her words since the seats were all full and the aisles packed with standing riders.

But the bus driver screamed at her from the front that if she did not shut up then she would be put off the bus right there.

So the crippled old lady tried to weather it out another mile to her stop but it was sad to see that all she wanted was for the driver to say that there was some problem in getting the bus running on time. The driver was blessed the same people on our May 9, 2002 nightmare was not there to stand with the old lady.

We really would appreciate it if you could email us the name and email address of the person on the federal level who could take some type of action to stop this kind of abuse with our bus system. Unless the local company wishes to give up all of any type of federal funding for its operations, then they would have to at least listen to a federal input.

Please do not waste time by asking the bus people if they are having a problem. I guarantee you they will just forward your complaint on a post card to another desk or call a supervisor from a troubled bus full of passengers.

Where should the Tyson fight be held? In Vegas, of course. On one of our three ring Citizen's Transit buses in the center aisle. If Tyson gets out of hand, the driver will call a supervisor.

Thank you for your help in assisting all of those in Las Vegas who depend on bus transportation to get some relief from customer abuse.

Sincerely,
Bill Cooksey
vegaswatchdog.com

+++++++++++++++++++

A certain grocery chain from California seems to have some real sour checkers who are nasty to customers by spitting out responses to simple questions that should be answered with a smile and a friendly explanation. It's not exactly a good time in the USA to become quite so over confident with the jobless rate increasing by the thousands daily in our Valley. And what does it say about the grocery chain's training and the checker's union directing their members to be nice to the customers? I am quite aware that most people in grocery lines are not the nicest, but someone at the vet's office has to give the rabies shots. And if that is your job, then get with the program and take your St. John's Wort tablets. You'll find them on aisle # 6.

There is an excellent used bookstore out at Valley View and Sahara in the shopping center. The owners have outdone themselves and The Dog recommends you go take a gander. It is the only store of its kind at that address.

Congratulations to the City of Las Vegas for having a cracker jack bunch of professionals in their business license division. Everyone is kind, cooperative and willing to work out any and all situations with grace and ease. It is a pleasure to deal with a governmental agency that gets the job done with a smile. We especially take note of the expertise of Jim Ricketts and his staff down on fourth street. They make the process totally painless and almost fun.

Okay! Dogs don't generally like CATS, but this ole dog has found a few drivers purring on those CAT buses that cruise around town. Needless to say, the system could be tightened up in scheduling, but out of ten trips in September, The Dog scored seven real winners. The second Saturday after the NY attack I was really touched to see that one of the drivers just waved people on by the coin slot for a free ride all the way from Maryland to Rainbow. With all the patriotic spirit brewing already, this driver gave the wide range of riders a common denominator to all count their blessings at one time.

Bingo!!! Another Vegas Watchdog that I know very well asked me to inform the world that there is a rip off operation down near the Stratosphere that calls themselves an in bound phone room. They advertise a lot for people to come and fill out applications for jobs. You remember jobs? They are getting thin now days. But these folks, my friend tells me, are just stepping over the line with ten page questionaires about a person's history and the job they are offering is definitely one big hassle after another. But with so many little pups hungry at home, what is a parent to do but try and work somewhere? Just be aware that this Rip Off Agency is daily bending and discouraging dozens of folks who are really trying to keep on their feet. This other Watchdog told us that one Afro-American lady was totally discriminated against as she was told that she would have to go home and change clothes before being interviewed for a job where 200 people sit arm to arm in a small room with a phone and a screen. This lady was nicely attired in new expensive jeans, a lovely top and excellent footwear. But the receptionist insisted that no one would be interviewed in jeans. Yet the lady in jeans pointed out that two folks with cut-offs and stylish baggy pants below the "well you know"....had just been taken in to be interviewed only minutes before. That is not right and should be dealt with by authorities. Don't you think? Several folks in the lobby stood up and tore in half their applications and walked out. Where are the marchers when you need them? Have Jesse Jackson contact The Dog and I will give him the address. He would also have a bone to pick with them.

Enough for now. I have to retire to the house. It is time for my bowl to be filled up and my tummy is starting to growl. See you next time on the corner. Just bark twice and wag your tail. The Dog will be looking out for you!

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