Tag Archives: mayoral candidate

City Councilor Michael Gaffney drops another bomb


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A few days ago: Rose walking her mutts. With the leaves turning color, her thoughts turn to the fall city election … pic: R.T.

By Rosalie Tirella

No, it is not the usual City Councilor Michael Gaffney political hate bomb, right before this Tuesday, September 19, the last date all Woo city councilor candidates at large must officially declare their intent to run for mayor. No, this time, it’s not Gaffney: demonizing minorities, refugees or immigrants; accusing the editor of a local paper of being a sexual predator after the paper runs A FEW PARAGRAPHS! on him that he doesn’t like – Gaffney does this to cost the editor his job and stop the stories – not to help women; lying about and twisting the intentions of present Worcester Mayor Joe Petty; cynically thinking he’s smarter than every one else in the room so he boldly obfuscates and manipulates his way into the voters’ psyches.

No. It’s not the usual Gaffney scheme, taken straight out of the Donald Trump Shit on the Other – Prey on the Weak Handbook. No. This is something new: Gaffney’s declared that this fall, this election season  – when he runs for mayor of Worcester for the second time – HE WILL NOT BE TAKING ANY QUESTIONS FROM THE MEDIA – pertaining to his mayoral run!

That’s right: He will be answering zero Q and A-where do you stand on the issues? candidate surveys. He will be participating in zippo candidate profile pieces, shunning any kind of forum hosted by any paper, radio or TV station  … saying NO to any media-sponsored forum that will help voters make informed decisions in the voter’s booth this November. 

A guy who runs for mayor of the second largest city in New England but refuses to tell the voters what he is gonna do, if elected mayor! That’s Gaffney!

Endorsements? Screw ’em! The Gaffer, who never shuts up when it comes to spreading falsehoods about his perceived political enemies, is clamming up when it comes to talking facts, ideas and goals for Worcester! Unless he is planning to spend $40,000 on advertising, like he did last election cycle, so he can control his message, totally. Because he’s got the dough. … Very presidential candidate Donald Trump! Money money money.

Boycotting voter education, while doling out a ton of voter miseducation on Turtle Boy!

Even though Gaffney thinks he’s merely poking a thumb into the local media’s eye ball, grabbing control of his message, he’s  hurting himself. You wonder: What is Mike Gaffney so afraid of? What is Mike Gaffney trying to hide, ashamed to admit, unwilling to own? Why can’t he be a part of this very American tradition? What doesn’t he want to discuss?

Obviously, quite a lot. Basically the way he does politics – his political m.o.

For starters:

Gaffney’s Sanctuary City lies/race-baiting debacle that messed up Worcester for weeks;

his vindictive political style and bashing of poor people a la his political supporter CHANGE WORCESTER FB PAGE ANONYMOUS AUTHOR PAUL COLLYER – a guy who is so NEGATIVE about Worcester it hurts!

… or may be it’s Gaffney equating – like his buddy Aidan Kearney, owner and writer of Turtle Boy – minorities and poor people with crime and stupidity, an America on the cusp of moral collapse

… or, like Aidan Kearney, like Donald Trump, it could be Gaffney’s stoking the prejudices of people who fear a changing Worcester/America – and refusing to admit to the fact in order to keep feeding the red meat to  his political “base”

… or, coordinating hateful stories with Turtle Boy … and Paul Collyer’s FB page, Change Worcester, becoming an echo chamber – though Collyer has often been the original source from which some of the puke was first puked up.

When you think about it, every puke-y, ugly Worcester political  hate-storm, every nasty Woo political scream fest, every depressing headline about one Woo group pitted against another can be traced to City Councilor Michael Gaffney. Or, if not the source, the Gaffer’s fanned the flames of misunderstanding and prejudice. For political gain. To win.

Now why would we want a guy like this to be Mayor of Worcester?

Worcester is the second largest city in New England. A complicated, diverse, growing metropolis! We deserve better! Incumbent Mayor Joe Petty is better – he is a BETTER man than Gaffney will ever be. He’s a bigger man, a man whose heart is not capable of hatching all the shifty, soul-shriveling political schemes of a Mike Gaffney. And, for this Woo voter, that’s what it comes down to: Petty is perfect for my city of 2018 and beyond not just because he’s a guy with the smarts and collaborative instincts to create a Woo on the move but because he’s got Modesty and Grace. Grace: a quality the spiritually vacuous Gaffney knows nothing about. Being a good person who never exploits the OTHER in our society, the weariest and weakest among us: refugees, the poor, the hungry, the homeless, the men, women and kids struggling with drug addiction. Mayor Joe Petty works hard to make our city a millennial playground, but he also keeps his eyes on our kids in our schools, our families in our inner-city neighborhoods, our workers who need good jobs and job training … even our pups in our dog parks! He is a GOOD PERSON WHO DOES RIGHT BY EVERYONE. In a multicultural city, with a minority-majority public school system, a lot of poor folks who the global economy has abandoned … during these awful Trump Times in which cities are gut-punched daily, courtesy of our insane President, we need Grace in City Hall. We need Joe Petty.

We don’t need schemer, never-dreamer Mike Gaffney!

Trump clone Worcester City Councilor Michael Gaffney and his Resolution (or Revolution?!) of Hatred

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You see this big sign when you enter Worcester City Hall from the city parking garage. It WELCOMES ALL TO WORCESTER! photo: R. Tirella

By Rosalie Tirella

Take City Councilor Michael Gaffney (PLEASE!). Has there ever been such a dangerous Worcester City Councilor? Such a loathsome opportunist, cynic, headline-grabber and power-snatcher posing as a city “leader”? A demagogue lurking beneath a friendly, penguin-emblazoned sweat-shirt, force smiling that weird, serpentine smile of his and doing all sorts of nefarious things to my beloved city? Worcester’s  own snake in the grass!

Michael (Mike) Gaffney’s goal?

Pure raw power.

And to overthrow the Democrats who, for the most part, have run this city for decades.

Gaffney wants a Republican-lead Worcester and he, already the head of the city’s Republican committee. wants to be crowned her king.

Screw the  fairly progressive Democratic Gateway City we all live in and pretty much love. Welcome to carnage-strewn Trumpland! Welcome to Gaffney shitsville where people, especially minorities, are thrown under the bus daily.

If we aren’t smart and vigilant, Gaffney – with the help of his friend and personal public relations machine, the racist, classist Aidan Kearney of Jefferson, the evil voice of the hate-spewing Turtle Boy blog  – could become our next mayor! Think I’m kidding? Worcesterites are getting used to Gaffney’s creepy, slippery ways. And he’s smart: people often don’t realize he’s playing them, playing on their deepest prejudices when he decides to run hard with a (wedge) issue on the City Council floor and wants their support. Or when he conflates two issues and ends up scapegoating a minority group. Or when he just fucks with our heads, sowing racial intolerance and chaos.

Forget about leading a  complex, diverse, very cool Gateway City! Gaffney is all about hatred.

Gaffney, a relative newbie to the Worcester City Council, is the exact kind of morally bankrupt asshole you’d expect to be vomited up during these toxic Trump times! His ideas, his speeches, even his supporters are all taken from the Donald Trump playbook. Our insane PRESIDENT😰😫😫 has made it ok for politicians like Gaffney to behave in racist, divisive, bigoted ways. Trump has, perversely, validated their un-American-ness! Because he’s the biggest fascist!

So Gaffney throws a bomb on to the City Council floor every other week!

He traumatizes the City of Worcester with his red herrings for mere political gain and to weaken the city’s present power structure. Gaffney’ll pounce on any issue – or create one – that he thinks will hurt our mayor, Joe Petty, and make him (Gaffney) the hero. Gaffney will say anything or float any nutty, racially explosive idea to gain the upper hand. Usually it’s one that is somehow connected to vulnerable subsets of our people – for example: the minority-run Mosaic Group or City Councilor Sarai Rivera and her property. Gaffney beat those issues and people to death. He was able to be so merciless because both issues’ main players were people of color. And there are lots of bigots in this town (all Turtle Boy readers) who cheered him on!

Now we’ve got the latest Gaffney-manufactured shit-storm, another racial and ethnic hornets nest, with our weakest brothers and sisters (many children) at its heart: Next city council meeting City Councilor Michael Gaffney is ASKING THE MAYOR AND CITY COUNCIL TO WEIGH IN ON SANCTUARY CITIES. TO, IN A VERY PUBLIC WAY, DECLARE THAT WORCESTER IS OR IS NOT A SANCTUARY CITY. Gaffney is demanding that his City Council colleagues  sign on to – or not! – the anti-Sanctuary City resolution he has so craftily crafted!

What garbage. What bull shit. What a way to make the City Council fritter away the city’s time! This has nothing to do with making Woo a better city! Gaffney has set up this situation up so he can WIN POLITICAL POINTS – and he wins either way!

He hurts Mayor Joe Petty and the Dem power structure in town no matter how the council votes. Just bringing this shit resolution on the council floor opens the floodgates to race baiting, group-hating and soul-sapping arguments between Woo residents and among Woo City council members. Rotten words and hurt feelings will rule the day as we rue the day!

Gaffney does not give a fig that he teases out all kinds of racist feelings in our community,  exploits people’s deepest prejudices and obfuscates the real issues.

He willfully chooses to make things murky! He uses people. He keeps Worcesterites from understanding each other and learning the truth about each other!

On Gaffney’s watch there is no bending that arc towards justice! Just more hatred in hate-filled times.

So, this is what the Gaffer’s true intentions are:

1. To get the mayor and city council to say: YES, we’re a SANCTUARY CITY.

2. To get the mayor and city council to say: NO, we’re not a SANCTUARY CITY.

If they go with #1 they make all their constituents happy and do the right thing, but the City, thanks to President Trump, loses millions of dollars (except for cops) in federal funding. Also: the more conservative folks in Worcester, plus all our racists and bigots, will hate them and try to vote them out of office in November.

If they go with #2, their constituents and supporters will be devastated and Worcester’s most vulnerable folks will be scapegoated, sent back to violent lands, torn apart. They will be broken-up and broken-hearted. We’ll get the federal monies, but we’ll lose a good chunk of our collective soul.

In the meantime,  a crazy, evil, confused and confusing debate swallows up our city.

Thanks to City Councilor and mayoral candidate Michael Gaffney.

For Gaffney to create this kind of civic havoc is wrong.

For him to create a scenario, under the guise of his stupid SANCTUARY CITY RESOLUTION, divides folks. It pits one group of people against another, magnifies our slight differences and attempts to erase our shared humanity.

It’s just not right!

As we say here in lower Vernon Hill: Michael Gaffney’s a PIECE OF SHIT.

Mayoral candidate Joe O’Brien: “man of the people” has vacation home in Berkshire town where Gov. Patrick summers! And his wife Lisa’s $100 condo!

By Rosalie Tirella

… homes by he and his wife, Lisa Weinberg.

Let’s start with a quote about Joe being a true man of the people!

Telegram & Gazette columnist/Joe O’Brien-p.r.-flak Dianne Williamson was so good at pumping up ol’ Joe in one of her recent columns that he featured her pukey prose on his political mailings/push cards. O’Brien, who is running for mayor of Worcester, after a mediocre stint on the Worcester School Committee (he fought to get teachers who were on maternity leave the ability to work part-time) sent these political cards to practically everyone in Worcester! The quote: “There’s no arguing that he’s a guy [O’Brien] who walks the walk. While he and his wife could afford nicer digs elsewhere … they’ve chosen to buy a home in the heart of Main South … .” – Dianne Williamson, T & G

Oh, puhlease, Dianne! Joe and Lisa are not “walking the walk,” they’re working the real estate system and getting breaks from everyone! Take their home at Oread Place – the Main South abode Williamson writes so lovingly about. When Joe and Lisa bought the house, they paid a lot less than what it’s worth. Only days after they payed $25,000 for the home from the Castle Street Neighborhood CDC, it was mortgaged by Joe O’Brien) and Lisa (Weinberg) for $82,650, courtesy of Bay State Savings Bank. The bank obviously valued the property at over tripple what O’Brien paid for it – only one week after he purchased it! Joe O’Brien was basically paid to buy the house! How many people are able to mortgage their house for more than three times what they paid for it immediately after the purchase?!!

Since the original mortgage of $82,650 in August of 2000, Joe O’Brien and Lisa Weinberg have been given an ADDITIONAL $269,000 in mortgages on that property by various banks over the last six years, some of which have been discharged. The most recent outstanding mortgage is one for $76,000 on June 22, 2007. Continue reading Mayoral candidate Joe O’Brien: “man of the people” has vacation home in Berkshire town where Gov. Patrick summers! And his wife Lisa’s $100 condo!

List of Joe O’Brien’s campaign contributors (Quinn Bill super-payments a go for O’Brien)

Political Action Committee contributions to Joe O’Brien as of 10/16/09:

Mass PAC $500
Roofers Local 33 PAC $200
Local 170 PAC $500
Carpenter Local 107 $500
Painters #35 PAC $500
Local 509 SEIU $100
United Assoc Pipefitters $250
Central Mass AFL/CIO $100
IBEW Local 96 $500
Iron Workers Local 7 $500
UFCW Local $100
Itl Union of Operating Engineers $200
Total: $3,950

Registered Lobbyists donating to Joe Obrien as of 10/16/09 (this list may be incomplete):

Francis Shea 632 E Seventh St Boston $150
David Shapiro 21 Wormwood St Boston $150
Joseph Newman Mass Electric Lobbyist 176 Newport St Arlingotn $125
Paul O’Sullivan O’sullivan Associates 18 Laurelwood Dr Norwell $200
Paul Donovan 82 Park Ave Newton MA $100
Benjamin Josephson 141 Blake St Newton MA $200
Dennis Kearney Kearney Donovan McGee 7 Madison Ave West Winchester MA $200
Michelle McGee Kearny Donovan McGee 19 Concord St Boston $200
John Sutich 35 Winthrop St Apt 1 Boston $100
Barbara Sutton Cassidy Associates 4 Franklin St ALEXANDRIA, VA $500
Scott Ferson Liberty Square assoc 83 School St Belmont, MA $200
Tracy Spicer 5105 Nahant St BETHESDA, MD $500
Matthew Irish 4 Manilla St Worcester, O’neil Associates $125
Meghan Condon (Spouse of SEIU Lobbyist Christopher Condon) $100
Total: $2,850

Major Contributors to Joe Obrien directly related to Congressman McGovern, who live outside of Worcester and have no current business conducted in Worcester:

* Abby Rockefeller President, Clivus-Mutlrum Inc 104 Irving St, CAMBRIDGE, MA
Donated $4,600 to Jim McGovern in 2008 alone, and $500 to Joe Obrien this year
* Daniel Passacantilli, Blue Front Telecom Group, 4 Franklin St, ALEXANDRIA, VA
donated $1,500 to Jim McGovern in 2008, and $250 to Joe Obrien this year
* Barbara Sutton, Lobbyist for Cassidy and Associates in WASHINGTON DC,
Has donated over $10,000 to Jim McGovern over last 4 years, and $500 to Obrien this year.
* “Liberty Square” lobbyists donated a total of $8,500 to McGovern in 2008 and $700 (Tracy Spicer $500 and Scott Ferson $200) to O’Brien this year

Jim McGovern staffers who have donated to mayoral candidate Joe O’Brien’s campaign as of 10/16/09:

Gladys Rodriguez Parker $500
Matt Pacheco $250
Chris Philbin $200
Dorothy Buduo $100
Paula Buonomo $100
Patrick Norton $50
Jennifer Walters $25
Total: $1,225

Mayoral candidate Joe O’Brien: lackluster, aloof and … a bit of a snooze

By Rosalie Tirella

Worcester – I caught some of the mayoral debates that are taking place all over our fair city, all the time, it seems. What struck me was how lackluster “the new, fresh” candidate Joe O’Brien seemed. Candidate Kate Toomey didn’t count. Doesn’t count. So I’ll skip her and focus on Mayor Konnie Lukes’ main opponent: O’Brien – the guy who is being touted as the Second Coming.

Unfortunately – or fortunately for Konnie Lukes – this guy isn’t the Second Coming. If you watch the debates, he isn’t even interesting. What’s more, during these mayoral debates and forums, O’Brien comes off as … kind of bored … a bore – an aloof, passionless guy who isn’t enjoying any of this. Watch him and you see a candidate who seems to be doing this from rote, the kind of candidate who sees running for Worcester Mayor as a task, a (thankless?) job. Maybe that’s because O’Brien sees being Worcester Mayor as a stepping stone to bigger and better … offices (state rep, state senator, etc). With his eyes ultimately on a bigger prize, it’s no wonder this ride is a bit of a snooze for Joe O.

If he wins this mayoral race, most likely he will dump Worcester by the next election cycle. He will then be an official politician and can begin his political career in earnest.

At least that’s what people in the know are saying.

State Rep. Joe O’Brien? He lost to Vinny Pedone years ago. Why do it again?

This is O’Brien’s last, best chance of jumping into ELECTIVE politics. He is in his 40s; time is running out. He has to jump at an open seat – a seat with more pizzazz/prestige than regular ol’ City Councilor.

So here we go, Worcester! Let’s all be subjected to O’Brien’s political ambitions.

Again.

Kate Toomey as mayor of Worcester?

By Rosalie Tirella

Kate Toomey, mayor of Worcester. How disorienting a freakin’ sentence is that?!

Mayor Toomey. Mayor Toomey? I just don’t get it! What do other people see in her that I am obviously blind to?

Toomey’s a woman with zero personality, zero charisma, zero charm. But forget the personality for a moment. As a Worcester city councilor (this is her second term), she never really adds anything of substance to Worcester city council meetings – except her approval of any plan hatched by the Rushton/Murray/Petty/old boys’ team. I watch the city council meetings ever week (from the comfort of a living room, away from the T & G/Blow Mag hacks who just love to give Rushton and Petty and their pals all the best play and make it a habit of dumping on Mayor Konnie Lukes, even Gary Rosen – outsiders, both), and Toomey never ever has came up with a cool plan or vision for anything! She has never had a passion about any issue. She has never advocated for anybody/anything on the council floor with vigor. She has never stood her ground fighting for anything. Toomey seems quiet, even a little withdrawn. Continue reading Kate Toomey as mayor of Worcester?

Joe blows!

By Rosalie Tirella

We hope Mayor Konstantina Lukes blows “Joe-Blow” O’Brien right outa the freakin’ water!

Amazing! Every election cycle the old Murray/Rushton/Donahue/Eddy brigade farts out yet another political wannabe. This time around the farted (oops! we mean annointed!) is Joe O’Brien, a guy with nothing to offer but his connections – and searing political ambitions.

Yes, yes, I know he has done some work on behalf of the schools, and he lives in Main South, etc, etc. But it seems to me O’Brien’s political work has always been in service to HIS POLITICAL CAREER – as if the ambitious O’Brien were just biding time until … the President came calling!

But President Obama hasn’t given O’Brien a ring-a-ding-ding. So O’Brien decides he wants to be mayor of Worcester -an idea that apparently popped into his head after spending a few years as Congressman Jim McGovern’s regional director. O’Brien’s job as McGovern’s top banana was a political plum thrown to him after helping run (so they say) L.G.’s Tim Murray campaign. (Talk about connections! Can’t the rest of us be connected too so we can get high-paying jobs for giving half-assed speeches on behalf of our pals?) Continue reading Joe blows!