Supervise this! Shop owner displays anti-Slutzky sign

Charlottesville Piano owner Tom Shaw put up his sign because he believes Albemarle County supervisor David Slutzky is "fiscally brain-dead."

The calendar may say March, but it may as well be November, as election season is well underway at one local business. The owner of a music shop has a bone or two to pick with Albemarle County Board of Supervisors Chair David Slutzky (D), and he has made his discontent known by erecting a sign declaring his shop a "David Slutzky Free Zone."

"The man is fiscally brain-dead," says Tom Shaw, owner of Charlottesville Piano, located at the corner of Rio Road and Berkmar Drive.

"Slutzky doesn't want to cut any County programs," explains Shaw. "When the economy is bad like this, I have to cut back. Why shouldn't the County cut back, too?"

Shaw, who identifies himself as a Republican but says he's voted for Democrats like Delegate David Toscano (D-Charlottesville) and Congressman Tom Perriello (D-Ivy), says that it isn't just Slutzky's stance on spending that provokes his ire–- but also Slutzky's position on property taxes, which Shaw calls "smoke and mirrors."

"Slutzky keeps saying, 'Your property taxes won't go up,'" says Shaw, "but that's only because assessments are going down at the same time he wants to raise the property tax rate from 71 cents per $100 of value to 74.5 cents per $100 of value. You think he's going to want to bring it back down when assessments go back up? It's dishonest."

But with five other supervisors, why target Slutzky? That's where Shaw's objections go beyond the political and into the personal.

"When he was thinking about running against [state delegate] Rob Bell, he said he was going to 'kick his ass,'" says Shaw. "You just don't say something like that about someone."

Shaw is referring to a comment Slutzky made at an October 31 meeting at which he panned Bell's opposition to a proposal to add a one-cent sales tax to fund a proposed regional transit authority. "We will pillory [Bell] in the press," Slutzky said, "and then we run against him and kick his ass out."

Shaw's sign has already received plenty attention from both politically conscious passers-by and simply curious customers.

"People ask about it all the time," says Shaw, "and I tell them what I'm telling you. I want to do everything I can to keep him from getting re-elected."

This year, Slutzky seeks his second term on the board. Shaw says he has no personal stake in seeing Slutzky ousted, and has no personal connection to Rodney Thomas, a Republican who has already declared his candidacy for Slutzky's Rio District seat on the Board of Supervisors.

"I've never met the man," says Shaw of Thomas, "but I hope he wins."

Contacted by a reporter, Slutzky declined to answer questions about Shaw's sign, nor to address Shaw's criticisms of his policies.

"I'll talk to you about many things," Slutzky told the Hook, "but I'm not going to talk about that."


I hear that Shaw is losing longtime customers over this. Good!

Lonnie the liberal, come on over to my farm and try to tell me what I can and can't do because I can always use some more fertilizer.

I'm going to do business with the man BECAUSE he shows courage in taking on politicians who make it harder for the rest of us. I can't vote against Mr. Slutzky because I don't live in his district, I'm in Crozet, but I will help his opponent thanks to Tom Shaw and The Hook raising this important issue. The supervisors work for us, not the other way around. I looked up some past articles about Slutzky online, and saw a video of him at an Earlysville meeting and supporting a tax raise and all but one of 45 attendees was against him and the tax raise. He is very arrogant to think he is right and the rest of us are wrong. He is a representative, not our Commander-in-Chief. He comes off as uncaring to the needs of those of us who struggle to make ends meet. He gives politicians a bad name.

"Interesting discussion" James? This is about freedom of speech without persecution from opposing sides. Shaw is being hammered in these comments by the very people who claim they want equality for all. It seems that "equality" to them is governed by whether you agree with them or not.

Here's the real secret James...Shaw is not in the minority, but the majority. Anyone who doesn't even have a sense of that is delirious. Now that's interesting!

Interesting discussion, but about a month ago, this was covered on The Schilling Show blog. Read the original story:

I've read these posts and am stunned at the number of people who complain about Shaw making this personal, yet have no trouble at all saying they will not do business with him. Sounds personal to me. They'd sooner pay for a product that is more expensive, less convenient to acquire and possibly get products of lesser quality than support him, or his business in any way.

You people, yes, you people, should be praising Shaw for taking a position like this so publicly. My guess is, he stands to lose more for taking this position than any of you idealistic liberals who really do whine about anything and everything. You're all sheep. You elected this idiot to office. Shaw is simply trying to right your wrong. Wake Up!!!

It is a pretty sad state that here is genteel Albemarle county you can't express an opinion about how OUR politicians spend OUR money without threats/promises of boycotting a LOCAL business. A business which by the way supplies JOBS here and pays TAXES. SHame on you. I give Tom Shaw credit for believing in something worth fighting for.

I recant everything I wrote. I am a dumbass. D'oh!

Will, those two things frequently go hand-in-hand, though I'd be willing to give him the benefit of the doubt on this one. He's a Bell supporter though, and that's bad enough... (BTW, I think Slutzky's statement was dumb too, and I can't stand Bell.)

I'm just so heartily sick of the pro-development right-wingers on the BOS. By pro-development, I mean pro BAD development. There's a distinction to be made between smart and stupid development, but Republicans like Ken Boyd and his supporters are too boneheaded to understand that. They're too busy making sure that friends like Wendell Wood, Hunter Craig, and Charlie Hurt pave over as much of the county as possible, as quickly as possible, while ensuring that their wealthy estate-dwelling pals get to keep their pretty green grass and views.

Though I doubt that it will occur, I would like to see a concerted effort from the folks at Albemarle Truth in Taxation and the Farmers Association to launch a campaign to oust Slutzky, Thomas and Mallek since these supervisors consistently vote against the rights of the individual landowner though are happy to accept proffers from large developers that actually are the ones destroying the pastorial views in the county not to mention that they are all pro tax and spend. Set up a web site where donations can be made to make this happen please.

Reality Check must not have read the article past the word "Republican" since Mr. Shaw states that he voted for two (liberal) Democrats; David Toscano and Tom Perriello.

I didn't read anywhere, where Mr. Shaw was against land-rights - just that he was against higher taxes.

I'm glad that Tom Shaw put that sign up because I now know not to patronize his business. If I can help it, I won't put another penny into the pocket of any county-destroying land-rights freak show Republicans. I'm sure that Shaw probably thinks that someone like Ken Boyd is just super-duper.

That said, I think Slutzky blows. For crying out loud, he appointed a freakin' developer to the planning commission to fill environmentalist Jon Cannon's seat! Can you set the bar any lower? Additionally, Slutzky's continued refusal to look into alternatives to the wasteful water plan seems mighty odd.

I say we HONK HONK when we drive by, to show our support. Go Tom GO!

Slutzky has certainly hurt those who have supported his campaigns, in behaving inappropriately.
Hard to feel sorry for him.

It's interesting how many people state they will never shop at Charlottesville Piano anymore because they support Slutzky and higher taxes, yet I wonder how many actually were/are patrons of the store. It's easy to make claims when you hide behind made-up online identities.

I also find it ironic that those in support of David Slutzky and higher taxes are apparently against Freedom of Expression by "punishing" a local businessman AND taxpayer for his views on lowering taxes.

By not supporting a Mr. Shaw's business, you will reduce future funds in the county coffers that can pay for so many social services you hold so dear.

-Will Lyster

Well Mike, What you're saying is so true with regard to too many politicians, including Slutzky. But remember the old saying, "You reap what you sow? Slutzky has certainly made his own bed. Seems his protective whiners would notice?
Maybe Slutzky's campaign manager should buy him some duct tape. May come in handy, and also give the public a rest. His yammering is just too much!

Mr. Shaw has done the right thing by fighting back. The assessment on his building were raised at a time of declining real estate values, and thus his County Property Taxes went up. Does that seem fair to anyone on this blog? Businesses are hurting right now and have fewer revenues from which to pay increased taxes. Those of you who call Mr. Shaw's fighting back "whining" probably didn't have to pay the Business Professional and Occupational Liscence tax tis year, but you should know that the County gets this money in advance based on projected sales (not profits), which means businesses have to pay the county 2 sets of taxes, in this case both of those taxes increased. We ought to give Tom Shaw a medal for taking on the wrong-headed Board of Sups and having the courage to post a public sign that takes on the Chairman responsible.

Lonnie, you seem to focus on one issue which makes me think you are the one with their head in the sand. expansion of gov't should be based on need not want. your bud slut seems to want and approve alot at eveyones expense. how about some accountablity?

its a dog eat dog world out there and politics is no diffferent.

You know,Shaw made a choice. He is one smart cookie and he knows he WILL NOT lose faithful satisfied customers. He is a specialist in this area,So he is not worried about losing his shirt, as some of you "far out there people hope." As for me, I am so very tired of listening to Slutzky's mouth, I want "anyone" else to win! We have a so called green majority on the BOS now and look around at the ugly sprawl they have approved in our historic county. Thomas can do no harm because the damage is already been accomplished by many of the so called green members including Sally, Dennis, and David, and with help from the backward policy makers inside the county offices. Give me a break.

Tax&Sepnd, you've got absolutely no idea what you're talking about. Slutzky is one of the few board members that has consistently tried to protect farmland the rural area so that we don't end up like Fairfax.

As for WINA, I rarely listen to it, and I'm not a fan of hate speach wherever it comes from. After all, It was hate speach like that on talk radio that inspired one guy in Knoxville to walk into a church and starting shooting people during a children's performance. Nonetheless, I stand by my comments as a liberal that I'm glad Schilling got his show back, even though I've been the target of his venom and hate speach before. If he wasn't there then we'd have Savage or some other guy, and I hate corporate radio that seeks to make us "anywhere America". Schilling may be a right wing nut case, but he's our right wing nut case. I do, however, wish that he'd consider that words really do have consequences, and he can choose to represent conservative viewpoints by addressing conservative issues without lowering the level of civic discourse.

As for Slutzky's record, I'm sure he can defend that by himself. I would say though that if you want us to lose the rest of the farmland in Albemarle County, or the county to look like Fairfax, then Rodney Thomas is your guy.

FDR: No one is saying he shouldn't be able to put a sign up in front of his business (or I'm not anyway), just that it might not be the smartest business decision. There's a big difference between Joe Private Citizen putting a bumper sticker on his car and a business owner who depends on public goodwill for his livelihood: If I ran a business, I would have put an anti-Bush sticker on my car, I would NOT have put a sign saying the same thing in front of my business.

But if Mr. Shaw wants to alienate some of his customers, he's free to do so.

This is simply free political expression. I doubt Cecil or others wrote complaints about the anti-Bush bumper stickers on some cars.

Slutsky's arrogance is his biggest downfall. Sometimes a person should not act like he is God's gift to mankind. I can understand where the PianoMan's discontent originates from. Slutsky does not respond to e-mails, finds it too easy to allow government to grow and spend unchecked and seems to find solutions in higher taxes or new taxes.

His push for a mass transit tax at my expense, when I and most county folk will NEVER use a bus (slow, time consuming, inconvenient) shows he is for urban issues rather than rural. This is Albemarle county NOT Fairfax. If he wants to live in a place like Fairfax he should return to where he came. I am for mass transit BUT only where it makes sense not as a pet project. If I want to commute by bus I'll live in a city where they make sense.

Sometimes "creative solutions" make an impact. Mr. Shaw is making "waves and gains". Thanks again

Slutsky is also supporting going forward with a $200 million dollar new dam and pipeline no matter what the cost and without exploring dredging and other less costly alternatives.

Is that a tax increase ?

Mr Crutchfield doesn't seem to think much of the present Board of Supervisors these days. Maybe it times to find a more responsible bunch

"OK Mom. This settles it once and for all. I will never again take piano lessons. To do so would be supporting a business owner that encourages anamosity in our community."

I so could have talked my way out of that month of piano lessons if this had only happened a couple of decades earlier. Screwed by Slutzky again!

All the SUPs have failed us in this economic downturn.

Why haven't they cut the budget to prevent a property tax increase?
Could it be because this is an election year and there are a lot of county employees and their families that appreciate the SUPs for all they done for them in not cutting the budget.

And for those that say taxes are not increasing (cough cough)
Yes they are. it is an increase, even when you pay the same dollar amount when your property value decreases.

Remember that taxes rarely ever go down. (actually this is never)
So, you be sure to thank the SUPs for the new tax rate, while you're writing those large checks.
That's what the "memo" section is for.

Why are they only now thinking about a reserved fund?
Hindsight is at work here people.

What were they thinking when they wanted to raise property taxes even more to fund a reserved fund?
For God sakes, it's only pennies. Everyone can afford that! (Well, I've given my two cents worth)

Why wasn't a reserved fund started years ago, when they had money to burn.
Because, there wasn't any money left over after burning it.

I'm not sure who can afford higher taxes.
Well actually, county employees can. Because, they get a break on taxes and still have their jobs and didn't take a pay cut and they are happy with the SUPs for raising taxes.

God help us this November.

Good for WINA. You have allowed us to view the real Slutzky. Funny how these people are sayin WINA is no good.
Notice what radio station they come running to to TAPE campaign spots? WINA :-))))))))))))))))

Is the public walking away from the "Schilling part"?We don't think so.The funny part,Davy Slutzky seems afraid to engage with Schilling.As a local politician this doesn't make any sense. It appears he is ducking his head.
Good for Thomas in going on the show.A great move.

yes plop many people are taking a walk, i mean walking away from WINA. including many, many long-time listeners who are tired of the slime that they hear all day on that once-proud but now-sorry excuse for a radio station. what happened???? now it's just empty diatribes, a steady diet of dumbed-down trash-talk radio.

It appears the Slutzky crew is thrashing wildly tonight.

Go ahead and rally.
The truth!!!!WINA heard from too many people who LOVE Schilling. He is HERE, so get over it. Take a walk if you don't like it. :-))))))))
Dick Moutjoy is a hero to us all. Be respectful and leave him out of this particular discussion.

No one has any use for WINA anymore except scum on the extreme right-wing fringe

Poor Dick Mountjoy must be rolling in his grave

Look what the crazies have done to his beloved station!!!!!!

The bottom line, RT is making him sweat.Schilling thankfully first clued us in.Slutzky did a stupid trick in trying to trash Bell.Slutzky buries his head.BYE BYE

Hooray, hysterical much? Who's threatening Cville Piano's right to stick this placard out in front of his business? No one. Who's criticizing his *decision* to do so? Lots of folks--cuz that's our freedom of speech. Democracy can be confusing and complicated, I know...

Me, I'm glad the businessman did this--just one more helpful bit of information for me to use when I decide where to spend my money.

I'm glad the hook ran this story, as I saw the sign last weekend and devoted all of five seconds to wondering, "Who the fu*k is this Slutzky cat and why should I care?"

Now that I know, I care even less, but I will defend to the death a businessman's right to express opposition to his elected officials. If that isn't democracy, then it's time to tar & feather all the politically correct fascists who don't see the fun in all this even when it whacks them upside their soft heads.

To hell with all these whiny pu$$ies, carping about hurting someone's feelings.

Elected officials are fair game. And they should know that before running for office.

Long hours and difficult decisions? Aw, cry me a river. Most politicans crave power and glory to fuel their egos. And most of them have no feelings to hurt.


As for wee Robbie Schilling, the simple solution for those that don't wanna listen is to change the dial, get Sirius or, better still, turn off the radio and learn to read.

As for WINA, the local audience has spoken and WINA has truly listened. Thank you for providing us with the truth and the very brilliant Rob Schilling. By the way, is Slutzky willing to engage Schilling on the show? If not, WHY? Seems to me, not going on the show would make many wonder what Slutzky is afraid to speak of???Maybe he is afraid he can't handle the questions from the public.

I'll take Plop's word that it doesn't matter, but the next time I need my piano tuned or moved, I won't call Charlottesville Piano.

Elected officials are fair game, but if the point is to raise public awareness, Mr. Shaw might get more respect by running for office himself instead of making a public display of whining.

If freedom of speech means the freedom to show your ass in public and alienate your potential customers, Mr. Shaw should go right ahead.

My guess, Shaw is not at all worried for losing business. He is great at what he does and he won't care if Slutzky and a few of Slutzky's friends decide not to buy a piano.
As for Slutzky, he deserves what he is getting. His comment with regard to Mr. Bell was in such poor taste. Slutzky should have thought of his family before he said what he did. Has Slutzky apologized to Bell and members of the public? If not, he should do so. Mr. Slutzky has set a poor example as a politician.
I predict Thomas will win. People are fed up with "THE ATTITUDE".
As for Shilling, keep it coming! Shilling keeps people like Slutzky in check, and as a result, members of the public are appreciative.
Finally, Thank you Mr. Shaw. You are are making a positive contribution here.

Is his business doing so well that he can afford to alienate such a large volume of potential customers? I know I will never go in that place now.

Lonnie, this is what happens when stations like WINA allow bottom-feeders like Rob Shilling to peddle their filth and slime on the airwaves; political discourse takes on a nasty and personal and bitter tone and ignorance carries the day. WINA used to be a respectable station but now it's just about tearing people down and fomenting intolerance and lies.

Being a public servant is a thankless job involving many hours, and many personl sacrifices. I heard that his family saw this sign and were pretty upset about it. It's one thing to attack someone's policy, but another thing to attack the person. I know with the tone of national politics it can be easy to forget that. Nonetheless, I've been in Mr. Shaw's shop before, but I probably won't go there again.

I think he basically owes Slutzky and his family an appology. Otherwise, he should run for a public office himself or join a public committee and learn just how difficult it really is to be a public servant.

His sign doesn't even make sense. With the circle and strike-through, it reads "No David Slutzky. Free Zone."

Its good to know there is a David Slutsky free zone. We need to establish a conservation easement program to set aside large tracts of land, or in fact the entire county as David Slutsky free zones. Having David Slutsky on your premisis should require a special use permit.

Hey HaHa:
Only a bleeding heart liberal would comment on things he knows nothing about. Shaw losing longtime customers over this? Don't bet on it!

Well HaHa, We recently made a large purchase from Tom. So, HA HA!

I assume that most people in favor of boycotting Charlottesville Piano Co. because the owner freely expresses his opinion are liberals or otherwise anti-business.

Remember, if you put Charlottesville Piano Co. out of business, you may not find another place locally to buy your piano wire for corporate execs. Another misstep in fully thinking your plans through!,2933,510837,00.html

If you elect Rodney Thomas then you will get higher taxes than you have now. The vast amount of money spend in this county is on infrastucture to support new development and on land use taxation ( mostly for people who aren't actually farmers). On the planning commission, Thomas never met a development he didn't like. His notion of planning, is none at all. Existing residents will be forced to pay for all the infrastructure improvements for new residential development in the rural area. No planning means more higher costs, and that will mean higher taxes.

So fine, rail against Slutzky, and fight for more development. Ironically even if you succeed it'll just mean more Democrats will move down from NOVA to live in the homes you build on former farmland. Ask Wyant how well that worked out for him.

Tree Hugging-- I agree with all you've said. But I'd add, that's the definition of painful, if I ever heard it: having to vote for Slutzky because Rodney Thomas is so awful.

Albemarle County is incredibly far behind on conservation, smart growth, wise infrastructure, etc etc. Instead of realizing that everyone needs to work together to ensure a good future for ALL, the process is continually subverted by wealthy developers and land rights advocates with dollar signs in their eyes. That's all the land is to them-- a means to an end. There's no civilized concept of stewardship or responsibility to their fellow citizens. This knuckle-dragging attitude of "well, ah gots mine" is going to result in a county that's completely paved over for the lower and middle classes, with large green pockets of estates and protected viewsheds for the wealthy.

There's no concept of mutual responsibility and "we" in the county-- until someone tries to raise their taxes that is. Until then, it's every man for himself.

Reality Check, it might not be a choice between Thomas and Slutzky. That could probably the biggest irony of all, that Shaw may be protesting the wrong candidate...

Shaw's not losing business, not because of this nor the downturn in the economy, he's actually doing better this year than last. I called him and he said his business is up this year over last year and business is still good. Those of you who blog crap ought to check your facts before you post errant information. Same for checking out Rodney Thomas' stance on raising taxes. I suggest anyone who thinks Thomas will raise taxes ought to call him and ask him directly.

What I find interesting is that Slutsky has backed away from a tax rate increase. Could it be that he is expecting $$$ from the feds to pay for some of the excesses of this county? Why waste political mileage when the fed is going to be giving $$$ away for our stimulation? Do you think he wouldn't be talking a 90 cent rate if money wasn't coming down the pipe?

Just because our tax rate appears low doesn't mean our taxes are low!

It is politically incorrect to say Slutzky. The modern nomenclature is to say Callgirlsky.

Waldo's right, of course. FYI, anyone following the link to his blog and leaving a comment while at work should know that if you post a comment that he deems offensive, he is liable to react in this way:

Waldo Jaquith Mar 11th, 2009 at 7:18 am
"Future comments from you will be deleted and your employer will be notified, since you’re using their internet connection for your comments."

Something to keep in mind before reading his blog or


"(liberal) Democrats; David Toscano and Tom Perriello."

Perriello is no lib. sure, maybe compared to that extremist and ignorant hate-monger Virgil, but he is a blue dog centrist.

and ironic that you would then include a link to that unhinged, booger eating, lying, foppish harpy Glenn Beck. way to back up the comment with substance! citing an "entertainer" who is a clown at his best and spews hate at his worst. ROFL

Tom Shaw stands up for his customers in this fight too, as piano customers are taxpayers too. Raising their taxes in a recssion is onerous, and this is not the time. Taxes can be raised for rainy day funds when the sun shines, but not now. It's also good business. If a consumer pays more in taxes, they have less to spend on goods and services. Look folks, our unemployment rates locally are up 25% or more (from a low 3% to 4 or 5% or more), but what doesn't show up on the economic reports locally is the diminished incomes from folks making a majority of their income on tips (waitrons etc) and commissions (real estate, automobiles, home furnishings; retail and wholesale). Commissionable incomes have been off up to 50% or more! The salesman who made (and spent locally) $75,000 may only make $30,000 this year. That's a lot of money mising from the local economy. Missing also are declines in income from private teachers (music, art, karate, yoga, etc,.) construction folks from laborers to management to entrepreneurs, and other private contractors. Auto mechanics are having a particularly hard time. Tom Shaw is sticking up for them!

County Farmer, unless you farm houses for a living, you might check out the statistics on farm land loss, in this county over the past 8 years due to "land rights" advocates. Farmers that fight reasonable rural protection strategies are achieving nothing but eliminating farmland (and farmers) in this county. If you hate farming so much that you want to pave over all the farmland, then don't call yourself a farmer be honest and call yourself a developer and/or speculator.

As for taxes, I challenge Tax&Spend to find a single county in Virginia with the same population that pays less taxes than we do. Besides, the sign doesn't say, "No more taxes", and as I seem to recall Ken Boyd also voted for the current tax rate.

I also find it ironic that those in support of David Slutzky and higher taxes are apparently against Freedom of Expression by ââ?¬Å?punishing” a local businessman AND taxpayer for his views on lowering taxes.

Will, I feel a bit rude explaining to you something that you surely know, but here goes. Freedom of expression is the right to express oneself without restriction by government, not the right to express oneself without any ramifications whatsoever. I'm free to loudly and repeatedly accuse the president of being a pedophile, and everybody else is free to call me a moron, boycott my businesses (not that I have any), or ignore me, each as they see fit. Nobody has suggested that this fellow's sign shouldn't be permitted, simply that it's not a wise business move, and that they will choose to shop elsewhere, as is their right.

Wow! Not even knowing the context in which it relates, I'm seriously disappointed in Waldo. That is if he actually said it.

Waldo, what would cause you threaten someone's job for expressing their right to speak freely?

Waldo....that's pretty shocking. I was a pretty loyal follower of your site. Could you provide an explanation of the above?

The poster in question was an offensive troll. It wasn't a case of difference of opinion, but rather someone using their employer's computer network to say really outrageous personal stuff with intention to piss people off.

You can agree or disagree with that, but its Waldo's blog. I believe in free speech, but if this clown had shown up at my house spouting that nonsense, I would have booted him. The blog is like Waldo's front porch. All viewpoints are welcome to stop by and discuss the issues of the day. But if your only reason to be there is to make nasty personal comments, then you'd best get off the porch.