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Response to Councilor Chateauneuf Redux

2016/04/04 in Absurd, Alex Morse, Chateauneuf, HPD, Lawsuit, Lies, Masslive, pronography

 I APOLOGIZE THAT THE SAGA CONTINUES, BUT SOMEONE ELSE WANTED THIS.

THIS IS NOT A FLYING PENIS

Yeah, for me this was well over in November 2015.  By then I had pretty much made my point and brought attention to Councilor Chateauneuf’s misdeeds using social media – to a very limited audience.  Then came the two show of cause hearings and the no contact / no harass 258E order – Councilor Chateauneuf was trying to call my actions “harassment” which were actually constitutionally protected free and political speech.  I defeated her in court.  So, again, on January 14th, I’m done.  I win three times.  You lose three times.  I consider this issue to be over with.

But oh, no, it cannot be over! Councilor Chateauneuf needs to hold a press conference because she has not had enough attention.  Then another one because she did not like the response from the first one.  The story languished in the media for a week and people were now made aware that she took someone to court for absolutely no reason and that she uses the police as her personal gestapo.  Largely the response was “what the fuck is her malfunction?”.  Certainly not the best idea on her part to make this public, but it saved me the effort as I was then planning on coming forward after the last court date to detail in a blog post her attempt to suppress free and political speech.  When all was laid bare by Councilor Chateauneuf herself  it was obvious that she was overreacting and abusing her power.  Additionally, her public performance was absolutely absurd.  When you were not laughing you probably had some amount of pity for her because it was obvious that she was flailing and totally not prepared for public service or criticism that might come with it. –  I have asked the question before:  Why is she even there?

So now comes the Chamber of Commerce breakfast event.  This event traditionally has it’s share of roasting.  Mayor Alex Morse makes a joke about not making a joke about her because she’d sue him if he actually did make one:

“Councilor Chatenauf isn’t here this morning. I was going to make a joke about her but I didn’t want to get sued for harassment. God forbid someone say something negative about an elected official on social media.”

Accurate, timely, funny and she 100% deserves it.  Well, Councilor Chateauneuf goes on Facebook to tell everyone that the Mayor is unkind and should not be joking about SERIOUS BUSINESS because someone using a drone took a photo of her naked in her own bathroom – a story that she tried to pin on me in court and a story that has been spread throughout the community in order do defame me.

Surreal

It is shared with reporter Mike Plaisance to follow up, which is reasonable after all; this is a serious offense that she is suggesting and if anyone is flying a drone around taking clandestine nude photos that is something that the public should be made aware.  The problem is that the story is not at all true.  So, again Masslive published a story and here was my response.

My response to Councilor Jennifer Chateauneuf’s false claims of clandestine drone photography.

If you are going to attempt to frame someone by fabricating a story about a clandestine photo taken by drone of a person naked in their shower it is most certainly a good idea to submit as evidence an actual photo of that person naked in their shower and not a photo of some random person found on the internet. I guess we all should not be surprised here; and if you have been paying attention you will know that this is what I have been trying to tell you all along – these people are not the brightest bulbs on the Holiday Tree. While we do not know who sent the photo to her or if she has manufactured this absurd plot herself; I was, albeit briefly, believing that there was an actual drone photo of her, naked, out there in the wild. So, while this creation lacks the technical skills needed to convince HPD – nor should it convince anyone – I will say that Councilor Jennifer Chateauneuf might be deserving an Academy Award for her public performance.

When I first heard about the “drone photo” I was very concerned. Is someone out there invading privacy and committing what amounts to sex crimes via drone photography here in Holyoke? If this were true, then yeah, I would be 100% sympathetic to Councilor Jennifer Chateauneuf – or anyone, for that matter – because this would indeed be a serious violation. She tried to pin it on me twice in court – mind you, we find out now that this was weeks after the police told her the photo was not of her; that the photo was not of the inside her own bathroom; that the photo was not by drone; that the photo in question was not even a photo but instead a screen-print from an amateur porn website. When she mentioned it in the no contact order hearing and in the show of cause hearing she told the judge and the magistrate that she had received photos of herself naked; in her bathroom; and possibly taken by drone. She testified to this story to bolster her harassment case against me. Testimony that would have had criminal implications beyond harassment – a charge that could possibly result in making me a registered sex offender. However, nothing was submitted as evidence. Why? We now know that this is because the official police report would indicate that her story was not true!

It should be noted that in the police report that she claims that she had “no problems with anyone until recent times with that individual”. This is not at all true. Not only did I receive support from many in my efforts to expose her misdeeds, there were also others that gave negative reviews of her business over her politics and one individual that threatened on Twitter to picket her business – on public property, the sidewalk – this individual was also visited by HPD multiple times and received a No Trespass Order from her.

Additionally, Councilor Jennifer Chateauneuf in her multiple press conferences and in her social media post criticizing the Mayor she continues to use the word “harassment”. This is another one of her lies. This was tested in court three times and there were no charges of harassment resulting from “hot dog memes” or my criticism of Councilor Jennifer Chateauneuf, an elected person that represents me:

The definition of “harassment” in c. 258E was crafted by the Legislature to “exclude constitutionally protected speech,” and to limit the categories of constitutionally unprotected speech that may qualify as “harassment” to two: “fighting words” and “true threats.” To qualify as “fighting words” the words “must be a direct personal insult addressed to a person, and they must be inherently likely to provoke violence.” As for “true threats,” these include “direct threats of imminent physical harm,” as well as “words or actions that — taking into account the context in which they arise — cause the victim to fear such [imminent physical] harm now or in the future.”

Attempting to suppress free speech. Using the police as an armed enforcement wing of her campaign. Using her position to call press conferences in order to attack an individual that challenged her and the Mayor for not providing support of her false claims. Now we learn of her continued spreading of this absurd tale despite the police report officially debunking it. Councilor Jennifer Chateauneuf’s behavior is unbecoming of an elected official. She should immediately resign and issue a public apology to me and to the City of Holyoke.

====================================================

If this story is proof of anything besides Chateauneuf’s gross ignorance, incredibly thin skin and her abuse of power it is that we need to start teaching civics in schools again.  If not that then we should have some sort of orientation for new public officials about how to respond to criticism from the public when it happens and what the bill of rights means in terms of political speech. Chateauneuf’s behavior proves that it’s possible for people to be elected without really understanding what they’re getting themselves in for.  It is a bit of a surprise sine it only takes a glance at the internet to see what people can and will say about national figures. And while there’s obviously a difference between being a city councilor in a small mill city and being, say, Hillary Clinton, there are material similarities here.  Or we could go the opposite way – forget the Constitution – instead limit speech and limit protest.  We could be headed that way, as this nation forever creeps closer towards fascism with every election.

My response to Councilor Chateauneuf

2016/02/02 in Absurd, Chateauneuf, City Council, Civil Rights, Classism, Holyoke, Lawsuit, Masslive, Mike Plaisance, pronography

UPDATE: POST NOW INCLUDES THE INCRIMINATING PHOTOS / VIDEOS BELOW MY RESPONSE

One of the offensive images.

Sent to Mike Plaisance on 02/01/2016 in response to the story he was drafting which can now be found posted here.

============================================================================

This is all ridiculous, but I do want to thank Councilor Chateauneuf for creating such spectacularly absurd political theater here. Very well done; and I do hope that it may it come back to bite you next election cycle. This all reminds me of another councilor who- when upset with a PhotoShop I created portraying her as “The Joker”- (as you surely have seen many times over with elected officials at all levels) went on a public tirade and abused assets like email lists to smear me for poking fun at her. Well, that only ended up with an at-large councilor that normally won in the top five of eight seats falling off the map that next election. And this really is what this is all about here – not just Councilor Chateauneuf. I heard it once from Councilor Chateauneuf in the courtroom, and again in a conversation with Lt. James Albert, “you harass people” and “he has gone after several councilors”, etc. Yes, I lampoon, poke fun at and have exposed crimes and misdeeds of several local politicians – and this has contributed to at least three of them losing election. This was all via a long tradition of free and political speech in this country – making fun of politicians is as American as apple pie, racism and police brutality. And these pols all should have lost because they were clearly not suited for the post. Public criticism is a concern for people like Councilor Chateauneuf; and it is her lack of understanding of the Bill of Rights and civics that shall be her undoing.

Some may wonder why I went after Councilor Chateauneuf and Nick’s Nest. Well, there are several reasons. First, the long history of Holyoke electing unqualified political hacks that get elected on name recognition only or for their connection to certain cliques in the city. There are several on the City Council at this moment. I heard a number of people say that she won because she “saved Nick’s Nest”. No, she bought an established successful business and did not fundamentally change what was was already a formula that worked. This does not really take any sort of savvy, certainly does not amount to a “saving” and not qualification one for office. Second, she does nothing on council. Often when she does speak she frames it in her experience at Nick’s Nest as if that place is a barometer for all things Holyoke – it is not. In that, she opposed the meals tax – an order that I supported –and similar such revenue programs have been successfully implemented in neighboring cities and towns and will provide our city with much needed tax revenue. Third, she supported an anti-panhandling ordinance in Holyoke. This is another attempt of hers to quell free speech. Any lawmaker that is paying attention should know that anti-panhandling ordinances have been shut down in at least three other Massachusetts cities after costly ACLU lawsuits. Not only that, she suggested that if we could not create an ordinance that we should find a way to shame them. The council, which is mostly white, already does not represent the 48% Latino population – now here we have classist comments like hers while near one third of the population lives below the poverty line. This is not acceptable. Lastly, Nick’s Nest is gross and the describing a restaurant on the website and in commercials as “good for kids”, a restaurant that does not sell a single healthy item on its menu, is indeed false advertising.

As far as her claims of sexual harassment: Councilor Chateauneuf has brought me to court three times. Twice for show of cause hearings and once for a no-contact / no-harass order. She lost in all three. The Honorable Maureen Walsh said it best: “I can think of a lot of things that I could say to describe Mr. Bickford’s work here, but one of them is not harassment.” Not harassment and clearly not sexual harassment. In the show of cause hearings the magistrate compared my creating of memes to those that have flooded review websites like Yelp and Trip Advisor over the political positions made by private businesses. We have all seen this, a wedding cake baker refuses to service gay marriages or a business claims to not serve Muslims and they get thousands of negative reviews in response. Also, I am not alone in targeting Nick’s Nest: there were others that gave Nick’s Nest one star reviews due to her politics. In forums and on Twitter one Holyoke citizen stated that they were going to picket her restaurant (on public property, the sidewalk across the street) over her classist comments – and in Councilor Chateauneuf‘s scorn she sent him a preemptive no-trespass order. Also, Councilor Chateauneuf said it herself, “a hot dog that looked like a penis”. Yes, hot dogs are made with lips and buttholes, do indeed look phallic and jokes are often made about “wieners”. Pointing that out is not “sexual” unless the context is clearly a sex act or the person viewing the image has some sado-sexual fixation. If the fact that you sell hot dogs bothers you that much you are in the wrong business. If political commentary and lampooning related to your political post results in your seeking to suppress free speech then you are again in the wrong business.

As far as your request that I be removed from posts in the city; from unpaid, volunteer positions on understaffed committees where I can provide valuable work (Holyoke Local Cultural Council, Cable Advisory Board and Holyoke Creative Arts Center) – Well, this plays into another one of your political games. We all know you do not support our Mayor and you’d love to put him in a pickle like you are trying to here. The problem is that you are so out of touch. My service on the Holyoke Local Cultural Council ended and while I could have re-upped I decided not to as I am too busy with other projects. The Cable Advisory Board was created to negotiate the new contract with Comcast and technically dissolved after we did so two and a half years ago. The Holyoke Creative Arts Center is a non-profit in the city, is not a municipal entity and the Mayor does not make appointments.

I already have taken the first steps to suing HPD and the city over Councilor Chateauneuf‘s use of the police as an armed enforcement wing of her campaign. I will also be going to the State Ethics Committee with a similar complaint. Your press conference and call for my removal from posts only adds to my case. Thank you.

 ============================================================================

One thing that I left out, that was mentioned by her was the fact that I did send an email before this all escalated.  It was a polite and reasonable email explaining my concerns about the panhandling ordinance and her sending the HPD to my home for what amounted to three images posted to FB, one attached to a negative review of Nick’s Nest.   I am her constituent and she failed to respond – which should be her duty to do so.  Had she responded this may not have escalated.

Councilor Chateauneuf claims these images / videos to be “sexual” in nature.  Please review.  In her letter to the Mayor she cites:

sexy tube meat

1.

sad hot dogs

This is actually a vintage WTF internet image. I have no idea what is happening here and I am not aware of there ever being any explanation for this image. Hot or not?

2. 

When this one was presented in the courtroom I said: "yeah, I made this, this one is my favorite." Hot or not?

3. 

 

This is a video from a Filipino band called “Hot Dog”.  That is a tongue coming out of the radio (not a jukebox) on the album cover.  Councilor Chateauneuf is the one that sees something else.  Yeah, it does kinda look like like a penis now that she mentions it, but it is also clearly not.  Hot or not?

Additionally, Western Mass News felt the need to censor this image. Why? Is it indeed lewd or are they trying to make it appear that way for the folks that would only see the edited version? And why censor the text? So that people could not search for the original? It makes no sense, that is clearly an anthropomorphic radio sticking its tongue out.

 4.

pigbuttholes

Crude? Yes. Sexual? No. Hot or not?

5.

cyriak?

This is a still from a gif (not a Vine as was suggested). It reminds me of a video from cyriak ( https://www.youtube.com/user/cyriak/videos ). It is strange. Not at all sexual. It is also not a hot dog. Rather, it appears to be a popsicle. Hot or not?

These images and videos are clearly not sexual… unless, as I stated above, you have some sado-sexual fixation with tube meat.  Her accusations are nothing but surreal and the fact that her attorney would come out and make statements like he did on television is absolutely bizarre.  Also, Councilor Chateauneuf and her attorney make claims about children viewing such images on Facebook.  Hello, forget the fact that these images are not “sexual” as you suggest, please remember that Facebook is 13+.

Lastly, the Mayor’s response to Councilor Chateauneuf’s requests is nothing short of an “FU”:

Important issues in Holyoke?  How about protecting free speech Councilor Chateauneuf’?  That’s such an important issue that it is #1 in the Bill of Rights.  You do not send the police to people’s homes over silly posts on Facebook.  Unless you want us to instead embrace fascism?  Looking at the dialog in the national election I guess I should not be surprised here.  .

 

Bresnahan Trifecta of Intolerance

2015/10/05 in Ableism, Absurd, Ageism, Bresnahan, City Council, Elections, Facebook, H.U.S.H., Holyoke, Sexism

I am the cartoon character of an asshole.

Last year about this time I ran into Dan Bresnahan at a bar… well, to be more specific, I was seen at a bar and someone summoned him to me – probably via txt message.  I knew he arrived when I felt someone actually leaning upon me. I looked to my left and there he was, actually fully invading my space with his body and nearly pushing me off my seat.  With his face about four inches from mine and breathing his sour breath he accused me of being “obsessed with him” and he actually threatened me with violence.  After I told him “no. not just you, I will go after any person that does not represent me or the best interests of the community – you are a problem, you are not very smart and you do absolutely nothing positive in your role as councilor” he then asked me “do you want to take this outside?”  I was in awe.  I knew that this man-child had zero filter and that he thought that he could do no wrong, but here he was, an elected official actually challenging a constituent to a fight.  I said “did you just challenge me to a fight?” he said “Yup”. I said “You are absurd” and walked out of the place.  I know, it sounds unbelievable, but this is Breezy D and that really did happen.

How do I know that he is the man that he is?  Well, first through observation of his grandstanding nonsense that he spews ad nauseam when given the opportunity to speak in council – as well, how he votes and obviously via behavior like described above.   I have also known this guy since he was nineteen years old.  I recognized him as a miscreant back then.  As a public servant he’s been involved in some seriously messed up situations that prove that he’s not fit for leadership.  Two situations revealed to me just very recently.  Of course we all remember the time in October 2013 when he professed for all to hear that his fellow city councilor became pregnant and then failed to sexually stimulate him like most pregnant women do.  Prior to Breezy’s tenure as a member of city council he was Director of the Holyoke Board of Health (zero qualifications, and forced to resign).  I have leaned that there are two different circumstances where there was a lawsuit and a union grievance over his discriminating against people based on age.  I have filed an FOIA request for info related to these cases, at least one was a monetary suit and the person was given a job where Breezy would not be their superior.  I was going to wait for all the details to even begin to mention this case but I write about this now to put in context with this post that has been going viral on Facebook today:

Someone let this guy be in charge of children? What were they thinking?

That’s right…  sexism creating an unsafe environment for women in the employ of the municipal, ageism resulting in discrimination lawsuits and now ableism with his failing to allow a child with autism to participate in a pee-wee soccer league where all kids should be given a chance.  If you cannot read that mother’s lament and not feel utterly heartbroken for that child or not asking “what kind of monster is this guy?” then there’s something wrong with you too.

On the bright side, one of the shares of this story on social media had tagged the Holyoke Youth Soccer League.  They responded:

 

Well, that is a relief.  It is my hope that this will be Breezy’s October Surprise that will wake folks up to what a douchebag he is – there are a lot of people running that I would rather see take his seat.  But at the very least we can hope that he will be removed from all opportunities where he could abuse children.

 

 

 

No Comment

2015/08/12 in Absurd, Elections, FrannyO, Mayor, Sexism, Whistleblower

Poor choice in campaign slogan.

In the continuing saga of misogyny in Holyoke we now have two media outlets providing coverage.

Angela told her story on WHYN 560 AM Morning Show with Adam Wright.  You can listen HERE.

An article was launched on Masslive today (in print tomorrow) that has a response from the O’Connell campaign via Media Mentors (A marketing company that has an obnoxious flash video with loud music that is on auto-play on their front page – this actually makes sense).  He says:

“These accusations come from a disgruntled former paid staffer who was terminated to which I have no comment. Anyone who knows me knows I have the utmost respect for women. I am a father of three daughters and husband to a beautiful wife. The chief operating officer of my company is a woman who I have worked with for the past eight years. I have a wonderful working relationship with her and hundreds of other women with whom I have been privileged to work with over my 30-plus year career.”

See?  She was fired, so it must not be true.  I knew that this would be in the response.  Next he names a few women in his life, so this must characterize him differently.  This is akin to when people say “I am not racist, I have a black friend”.  Whatever.  It is essentially a “no comment” statement neither confirming or denying what Angela did experience.

Of course comments on the Masslive article and where shared on social media have people not focusing on the issue and instead discussing the faults of the other candidates.  Pay attention:  Fran wants to outsource his job and sell the city to his friends.  Are we electing Fran?  No, we are electing whoever he appoints to be mayor.  Fran is running to be city planner and pass the buck to a city manager type.  He will take an oath office that he will fail to fulfill which will both violate state law and the city charter.

This all reminds me of our former puppet president Bush, except Bush had some professional handlers to better mask how unfit he was to lead.  If O’Connell’s handlers are smart they will now hire better handlers to manage this from now on.  This campaign needs adult supervision.  You can kiss babies, shake hands and maybe play your guitar, but for god’s sake, keep your mouth shut!

Oh, and tits.

Cue Regina Spektor:

Holyoke YMCA takes its sweet time to ensure families of a safe environment.

2014/11/16 in Absurd, HPD, Mailbag, Press, Shame, Whistleblower, YMCA, Youth

This just in.  Trigger warning, links contained herein contain graphic depictions of rape and sexual abuse.

 

November 16, 2014

Dear YMCA Members:

There is an article in the December issue of Outside magazine that mention allegations of sexual abuse; the allegations have been made by a former YMCA Vikings Swim Team member against the team’s former head coach.

To be sure, these are disturbing allegations. We take our responsibility to children and their families very seriously at the Greater Holyoke YMCA. Under the circumstances, we feel it is appropriate to affirm our commitment to keeping kids safe.

The YMCA was notified of this allegation in December 2011. We immediately placed the employee on leave and filed the required report with the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. The Greater Holyoke YMCA terminated the coach’s employment in July 2012 as a result of these allegations.

We have a series of measures in place to protect our families. Some examples of our standards and practices include:

  • conducting criminal background checks and reference checks on all staff prior to hiring;
  • conducting criminal background checks on all volunteers;
  • requiring all staff and volunteers to complete training on recognizing and preventing abuse;
  • prohibiting staff and volunteers from being alone with a child where they cannot be observed by others;
  • restricting staff contact with children outside of YMCA programs;
  • educating parents on how to recognize and prevent abuse; and
  • reporting any allegations or suspicions of abuse to law enforcement.

At the Greater Holyoke YMCA, the safety and well-being of children in our care always has been and always will be a top priority. We remain committed to our child safety practices. Our YMCA engages over 1500 children each year, and we work hard every day to make sure they’re happy, healthy, and safe.

As always, thank you for being a part of our YMCA family. We greatly appreciate your participation and support. Please contact me if you have questions.

Sincerely,

Kathy Viens

CEO

=======================================

Allegations. Allegations. Allegations. Allegations. Allegations.

No matter how many times you write “allegations”, I am NOT going to stop believing sexual abuse and assault survivors. There is NO doubt in my mind that Anna’s story is true. I am sickened that you did not reach out to the community when the incident happened.  Usually these types of assaults are not singular or isolated – there could be more victims out there who may have come forward if the YMCA was open and willing to even have such a conversation.  Instead you decide to take nearly THREE FULL YEARS to finally issue a statement only after local media coverage has pressured you to do so?

This was not sent to the media or published on their FB page – only sent to paying members as far as we can tell. Members can bring guests.  Children can come from two households.  Obviously, the YMCA is still trying to minimize damage here by not making a public statement.

We are sincerely disappointed and disgusted.

 

CBS 3 Springfield – WSHM

Diversity in Holyoke

2014/10/01 in Absurd, History, Holyoke, pronography

Not diverse enough?

“Paint a couple of fucking shamrocks on the thing and shut the fuck up!”

Racism and Censorship in Holyoke

2014/09/27 in Absurd, Art, Gentrification, Holyoke, Mailbag, Press Release, Racism, Shame

I received this email from David Flores about his art and his experiences with racism and censorship in Holyoke.

(David Flores at work on the piece in question)

Printed in it’s entirety:

On Saturday, September 19, 2014, my mural celebrating the Puerto Rican diaspora in Holyoke, MA was scheduled for installation as part of a set of pieces created in conjunction with the Holyoke Alleyway Revitalization Project. Before the piece could go up, the owner of the building on which it was to be installed decided that it could not be displayed on her property. She said that my piece would do more harm than good to Holyoke’s Hispanic community, and that in order to display it I would have to change it to make it “more diverse.” The mural consists of an 8’ x 16’ Puerto Rican license plate with HOLYOKE written across the center. Whereas many Boricuas throughout Holyoke proudly display similar license plates that point to their hometowns on the island, my project intended to claim that Holyoke is part of Puerto Rico. Holyoke is the community with the highest percentage of Puerto Ricans in the U.S. (44.70%), yet Puerto Ricans are deeply marginalized in almost every aspect of the city. Although the building owner had approved of my design and seen the finished project well in advance of the scheduled installation, she caved to pressure from nearby business owners and others who seek to prohibit public displays of Puerto Ricanness in Holyoke. Thus, the decision to exclude my mural from this public art exhibit is emblematic of the wider suppression of Puerto Ricans and Puerto Ricanness throughout Holyoke. With my mural, I hoped to contribute to efforts toward claiming public space in solidarity with Holyoke’s Puerto Rican community. However, this building owner’s decision and logic amount to the race-based exclusion of Puerto Ricanness in Holyoke at best and the censorship of Puerto Ricanness in Holyoke at worst. While the Holyoke Alleyway Revitalization Project has supported my mural, the decision to collaborate with a bigoted building owner on this project reflects the fundamental problems with this “revitalization” initiative. In fact, like other “revitalization” efforts in Puerto Rican neighborhoods and communities of color throughout the U.S., such projects end up participating in processes of gentrification despite their organizers’ best intentions.

As a Mexican artist born and raised in Chicago, I have been deeply inspired by Chicago’s Puerto Rican movement, particularly the strong Puerto Rican leadership in schools, community organizations, elected positions, and artistic initiatives. This community also taught me the value of Mexican-Puerto Rican solidarity, as expressed through joint efforts to combat educational inequality, gentrification, and (im)migrant stigmatization. This solidarity is most clearly represented in a chant that is often used in Latin@ political demonstrations in Chicago: “!Boricua y Méxicano, Luchando Mano a Mano!” This solidarity represents a form of diversity that exceeds the imagination of the building owner who prohibited my mural. I hope that this piece finds a prominent home and that it helps to celebrate Puerto Ricanness in Holyoke. I am also working with community members to combat the suppression of Puerto Ricans and make sure that this does not happen again. In addition to these efforts, I am seeking to collaborate with longstanding community residents to create site-specific public art in Holyoke through a fundraising effort I have named “!Más Color, Más Poder!” I also plan to adapt my Puerto Rican license plate project in other U.S. cities with large Puerto Rican populations. By affirming Puerto Ricanness in Holyoke, I hope to contribute toward the creation of communities that embrace and uplift marginalized populations throughout the U.S.

Bio:
David Flores is an Artist, Designer, and Community Activist who focuses on Latin@ placemaking through art and design. He has worked creatively with non-profits and community based initiatives in Chicago, IL and Holyoke, MA for over a decade. A native of the south side of Chicago, his work challenges the fears and anxieties that are associated with low-income communities of color by emphasizing their value, beauty, knowledge, and resilience.

Donald Wilcox Sues City of Holyoke and Geriatric Authority of Holyoke

2014/05/19 in Absurd, Alex Morse, GAH, Lawsuit, Mailbag, MGL, Patti Devine, Whistleblower

An anonymous email sent to me included photographs of documents outlining a lawsuit by recently terminated Donald Wilcox – former COO, CFO and executive director of the Geriatric Authority of Holyoke – against the City of Holyoke and the Geriatric Authority of Holyoke with allegations of discrimination and harassment by Patricia Devine, and that his termination was retribution against him for his whistle blowing to state agencies of ongoing impropriety at the Geriatric Authority of Holyoke.  Devine, then chairwoman of the Geriatric Authority of Holyoke board of directors resigning soon after this debacle because she “could no longer give the time and personal effort that the important position deserves”.  Well, for those that have been paying attention it does appear that she has newly found capacity because, while it is not officially announced, we are hearing folks congratulate her on her appointment to the Fire Commission.  What kind of damage can she do there?

.Here are the documents in full, sorry about the quality, these are photos by a still camera, not a scanner, enjoy:

Donald_Wilcox_v_GAH.pdf

7 pages, 4.1MB

Dean Tech Principal Livin’ la Vida Loca

2014/04/14 in Absurd, Classism, Dean Tech, HPS, Mailbag, Politics

Dean high school principal Bradley Barry Bacom is seeking reimbursement for meal expenses while traveling… Meal includes alligator, oysters, and alcoholic beverages. He is not seeking reimbursement on alcohol but as a role model for 300+ students at dean should consider getting separate receipts for alcoholic beverages.  Should we be paying for this?  Or should he pay up given the large salary received while kids fund raise selling candy from a catalog to pay for activities and parents are being asked to bring in supplies like paper because it is running out?  You be the judge:

Even more here beginning page 55…  $32.00 for one 8oz steak?  WTF?  It is called “poverty pimping”.  A form of disaster capitalism.  The state brings in a private company to run the (destined to) failing school only to suck resources out of the tax coffer that could be put to better use locally.

Meanwhile Sodexo school lunch is super delish…

A Modest Proposal: Holyoke needs prime-rate housing for rich white entitled hipsters.

2013/10/20 in Absurd, Capitalism, Classism, Eschatology, H.U.S.H., Mailbag, Poverty, Racism

HUSH welcomes this guest op-ed from Holyoke resident Charles Montgomery Burns III.

Nationwide, there is a tremendous untapped market for upper class, prime-rate housing in vibrant, walkable urban areas where one might expect to find such luxuries as artisan chocolate vendors, martini bars, dog grooming salons, fashion milliners and Asian-Mexican fusion restaurants.

So far, Holyoke has been unsuccessful at turning this market to its advantage. Instead, it has watched a valuable asset stagnate into a bleak cityscape of brown-skinned poor people, in effect prioritizing social services over a more white privately-led economy for the benefit of rich white hipsters.

I suggest that we kill and eat the poor. All of them. Rub their skins with oils and savory herbs then roast them on an open fire.  And any new poor that arrive – kill them and eat them before they can reproduce. After that their housing will become available for private interests as the poor will instead occupy our collective gullet or fear entering this city else suffer the same fate. Only then can this city thrive and private interests reign over the welfare of those that do not have and do not deserve.

Release the hounds!

 

Misogyny and Loathing in Holyoke

2013/10/02 in Absurd, Audio, Boob Tube, Bresnahan, Council, H.U.S.H., Holyoke, McGee, Sexism, Shame

douchenozzles

Breezy-D and Mr McGee - Holyoke's version of Beevis and Butthead

The microphones were on before the City Council meeting began and those of us with cable TV (or DVR) were able to witness a very interesting conversation between Dan Bresnahan and Todd McGee where they made mockery of their post; used profanity; engaged in misogynistic dialog; talked disparagingly of their colleagues; made jokes about their wives and insulted some community members – all of which could be heard in the comfort of your own home via Holyoke’s public access channel 15.  Priceless.  It really goes to show what little intelligence and integrity it takes to qualify as leadership in Holyoke.  So, here it is, posted as audio and transcript:

The audio began mid conversation.  They are talking about the agenda.  Presumably, at start, they are talking about item 24.  ”Petition for a Zone Change for Whiting Farms Rd. from BG to IP”  which brought a number of residents into council chambers for public comment and in support of this item.

McGee: …unless it was for Dan, if Dan wanted to change things.

Brezzy: I wanna put a Walmart there…  (McGee laughs) and a casino.

McGee: Roll the dice baby.

Breezy: …and a strip club.

McGee: [fumbling with papers] Yay! The Directory!

Breezy: A city-wide bicycle master plan?  I like Aaron.  (the Breezy makes an aside) If you smell garlic it is me, there is no doubt about it…  I am just telling you right now.  (back on topic)  A city-wide bicycle master fucking plan? Oh my god.  What’s going on?

(Rebecca Lisi walks into view, she’s 9-months into pregnancy with a due date of TODAY yet she’s still hard at work)

Breezy: That’s gotta be uncomfortable.  The way she’s carrying…

McGee: She’s due today!  Today’s her due date.

Breezy: I still don’t see that glow in her face… unlike most of the pregnant women I am attracted to.  She’s just not doing it for me.  But YOUR wife on the other hand – whoa ho, oh boy…  when she was pregnant!

McGee: I’m not gonna lie to you.  I was pleasantly surprised.  Anyone want a Twizzler?

Brezzy: [unintelligible, presumably speaking to agenda] What’s going on?

McGee: That’s going to committee too.

Breezy: Did I get the wrong agenda? [Is Dan only reading the agenda now, not reviewing it prior to the meeting?]

McGee: Nah, that’s going to committee.  Speaking of which, I better get…  [unintelligible, gets up from his seat]

(not sure who does a mic check, sounds like Gordon Alexander TAP TAP TAP – blows into mic “hey Ryan” TAP “it is not on yet”)

Breezy:  Bickford?

McGee: Yeah.

Breezy: I saw him.

McGee: Look at him.  Ah… Man.  How did MassMutual hire that? What the fuck were they thinking?

Breezy: Just keep an eye on him when we do the Pledge of Allegiance.  He doesn’t fucking…  he sits down. (McGee laughs) I am telling you, he’s a fucking communist.

[audio was shut off with video feed continuing]

Good job boys.  Well done.  Way to make complete fools out of yourselves.  …and oh, FYI: Mr Bickford was hired because he is much smarter and more professional than you two, obviously.

In regards to not saying the pledge as qualification of ‘communist’ – Requiring people to say a prayer to an object is more akin to authoritarianism than is the reluctance or protest to the participating in it. What an idiot.

Download audio here.

 

The Story of Boner Pills and Bankruptcies.

2013/09/13 in Absurd, Alex Morse, Capitalism, Elections, Federal, Lies, Mayor, Politics, Stanek

(Jim Santiago Memorial Water Park is pictured in the foreground)

The politicos that plague the City of Holyoke have been very good in the past at creating their own comedy but this Jeff Stanek guy really takes the cake.  Much like Danny Boyle and his serial campaigns promising a “business professional” with his sordid  leadership past; Stanek promises similar but with a much more impressive résumé of scandal and failures.  These are companies that he won’t even name in any of his interviews or post on his campaign website – only providing vague references like “call center”, “direct marketing” and “yacht sales”.  Yacht sales?  Is that supposed to impress us?  It is like when my kids see a limousine and then ooh and ah about how they want to ride in one and all I remember is the time I rode in one on the Vegas strip and found a syringe wrapped up in a dirty pair of underwear stuffed between the upholstery.  You gotta be one totally smarmy soulless motherfucker to be a yacht salesman.    …and what kind of real-world business experience can you achieve working with the out of touch customer base of the yacht market?  Say it three times:  Yacht sales, yacht sales, yacht sales…  there, if you thought it was to begin with, it’s not interesting anymore.

So, what of the other jobs? Well…

Talk America filed bankruptcy while he was the controller (Chapter 11 Bankruptcy Case No. 99-20765), Vital Basics (aka Talk America) had FTC charges resulting in a $1,000,000.00 fine (FTC Docket C-4107) for activities occurring while he was controller due to the sales of boner pills which were unlabeled prescription drugs claiming to be an herbal and safe alternative but which were actually counterfeit Viagra – very dangerous since they were marketed as “a safe alternative to other ED medications for those who take nitrates for chest pain.” – luckily nobody died as a result – and there were a number of other snake-oil type products (Avacor – an all-natural hair replacement, Vinarol – an herbal formula to increase sexual desire and performance, Thermal Carb – an all-natural fat burner and carbohydrate blocker and Glutotrin – a drug that supposedly cures, mitigates or treats diabetes).  And then to top it off a company he was working for, MyFreeMedicine.com, was hit with a RICO (Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act) again by the FTC (FTC DOCKET CV5-1607).  The FTC claiming “Since at least September 2003, defendants have deceptively marketed a program purporting to provide free prescription medications to eligible low-income consumers.  Defendants target a particularly vulnerable group of people: those with low income and no insurance coverage for prescription medications who spend more than $100 a month for the medications they need for their health and well-being.”  It was a case that made national news – ABC and NBC. …and yes, it was a case which was later dismissed in US District Court of Maine (Docket CV-00362).  However, MyFreeMedicine.com was ordered to cease its operations.  Stanek said in a Masslive / Republican interview that the case was dismissed and:  “No, I wouldn’t say it shaped me. It’s just, I think it’s just business. Anyone under the sun can file a lawsuit at anytime.”  He’s right, it was dismissed.  He’s also right that anyone under the sun can file a lawsuit anytime.  This is certainly true for personal injury, but let us just compare apples to apples here:  The FTC does not normally pursue unless they believe in a solid case and this case was hot on the heels of ANOTHER FTC suit where his company was fined $1,000,000.00.  Have you worked for one legit operation ever?  Or, better question…  with the exception of “yacht sales” did you only work for one operation that would change its name every time there was a lawsuit or a scandal as it does appear with those mentioned above?  Alternatively, were you actually completely naive and oblivious to these wrongdoings?  In that case you are a first class idiot.

At first glance I thought that this guy would be real competition for Morse…  but illegal boner pills; taking advantage of low income people; bankruptcies; – cough – yacht sales; and FTC lawsuits are his business pedigree?  I would not trust this guy to run a laundromat let alone a municipality.


(Holyoke is virile and needs no enhancement)

Audio of Morse Apology for Casino

2012/11/26 in Absurd, Activism, Alex Morse, Audio, Casino, Holyoke, Lies, Suher

Audio From Today’s Press Conference

 

Link to MP3

Jesus Loves Deep Discounts

2012/11/23 in Absurd, Capitalism, Consume, Religion, Video

Black Friday Around the World

In Greece, with the economy collapsing, the people attempt to push through barricades where their political leaders are meeting:

In the US, with the economy collapsing, the people attempt to push through barricades at Victoria’s Secret to buy panties:

In Spain, with the economy collapsing, the people take to the streets in desperation, where clashes with police break out over austerity cuts:

In the US, with the economy collapsing, the people take to Walmart, where clashes with police break out over cut price deals on plastic cell phones:

In Italy, with the economy collapsing, the people line the streets, threatening to rise up against the elite bankers that have usurped their government:

In the US, with the economy collapsing, the people line up outside K-Mart and Best Buy, threatenting to shoot and stab each other over ipads:

Priorities?

The Evolution of the Democrat

2012/11/18 in Absurd, Action, Activism, Democrats, Deval Patrick, Imperialism, War

Governor Deval Patrick Supports Gaza Brutality

 

Herd Mentality via Bernays Style Media and Group Pressure Has Allowed the Most Horrible Policies to Manifest and be Accepted in the Liberal Party due to the Result of Extreme Cognitive Dissonance of the Base.

 

Action: share, call, write…  also, as a link here:

 

Governor Deval Patrick shall keynote a rally praising and embracing the killing of children, and deliberate targeting of their homes, in Gaza. 19 November 4:30 PM 300 Hammond Pond Parkway, Chestnut Hill “For more information or special accommodations, please contact Char at charlotteh@cjp.org or call 617-457-8558″

Massachusetts State House
Office of the Governor
Office of the Lt. Governor
Room 280
Boston, MA 02133

Phone: 617.725.4005
888.870.7770 (in state)
Fax: 617.727.9725
TTY: 617.727.3666

Springfield

Western Massachusetts Office of the Governor
State Office Building
436 Dwight Street
Suite 300
Springfield, MA 01103
Phone: 413.784.1200

Washington, DC

Office of the Governor
444 N. Capitol Street, Suite 208
Washington, D.C. 20001

Phone: 202.624.7713
Fax: 202.624.7714

Twitter

Facebook

GOffice@state.ma.us

Deval, casinos, anti-union, privatization, three strikes law and now this?

Nobel Peace Prize Obama’s #drones and #Israel‘s #Gaza attacks both violate Geneva Convention.

President Obama official statement: “Israel has right to defend itself” warns of perils if violence in Gaza crisis deepens.