More has come to light about the “miscommunication” cited by 4th Berkshire Rep. William “Smitty” Pignatelli for his “no show” at the Pittsfield Gazette-PCTV debate Tuesday night at Berkshire Community College. Pignatelli blamed a “miscommunication” with debate organizers. He said he was confused about which of the two dates, Oct. 18 or Oct. 25, the forum would be conducted. The debate, sans Pignatelli, went on as scheduled , morphing into an interview between Rainbow-Green Party candidate Lee Laugenour and PCTV’s Dave Cachet.
In his Berkshire Eagle story, reporter Dick Lindsay quoted Pignatelli as being upset the event proceeded without him, which is rather like the parent killer being upset he’s an orphan after doing away with Ma and Pa. Event organizer, Pittsfield Gazette publisher Jonathan Levine, says, “I provided Lindsey with documentation of when and how Smitty was invited to the debate, with a September letter that makes it specific in bold print that it was October 18 and no reference to any other date.” Lindsay ignored this in his story. Lindsey also inexplicably ignored the views of the candidates that did show up for questioning. This was either poor news judgment or a deliberate attempt to make good with political power brokers.
Levine said Pignatelli sent him an “oops email that he had the wrong date.” Levine wrote back to the incumbent, offering to switch to the Oct. 25 date Pignatelli allegedly thought it was for the BCC debate. According to Levine, Pignatelli “has yet to respond to emails sent Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Monday, plus voice mail.”
Between Smitty’s no-show and 3rd Berkshire Rep. Chris Speranzo’s “gone into hiding” act, the strategy of the Democratic Totalitarian One-Party Regime becomes clear. Note that neither Pignatelli nor Speranzo has Republican Party opposition (a whole other story). Each faces what until now had been viwed as token candidacies from the Rainbow-Green Party (Laugenour and Mark Miller in the 3rd District).
At this point, Miller looks like he’s making a move. Speranzo damaged himself, perhaps beyond repair politically, with his ducking act. Miller has been the statesman in this race, exhibiting the maturity and savvy needed for office. The Planet will be the first to call this race for Miller in what will be the most shocking upset in local politics in a generation. Of course, Spurs probably doesn’t care about his reputation. He has a lifetime, appointed, $150K-per-year job lined up with the courts. Clearly, he has no problem telling the electorate they can go **** themselves.
Pignatelli and Speranzo are playing the “four corners offense,” possessing the ball and trying to run out the clock with the lead. Each day, they X out another day off the calendar. They especially have avoided TV showdowns with their opponents. They don’t want ANY chance of being pressed.
The Planet has seen a lot of cynical behavior by Pols Gone Wild, but the electoral milksopping by Smitty and Spurs tops all. We don’t know Laugenour, but we do know Miller. Mark Miller is an intelligent and trenchant thinker, a man of integrity and ideas. This doesn’t mean The Planet agrees with all his views, but he has out respect as a man of principle. We cannot say the same of Speranzo, whose candy-ass behavior should, if there be justice, result in his defeat on Nov. 2.
With Speranzo, voters will get same ol’ same ol’, a toady for the special interests and a man who lives to please his masters. With Miller, they will get an advocate in the General Court, a man independent enough to do what’s right.
MELMAZ AIN’T TALKING
After the Planet leaked what went on behind closed doors at the Pittsfield city council’s executive session, we’ve been picking up more of the pieces to a puzzle with a painfully obvious solution.
In this week’s print version of PLANET VALENTI for the Pittsfield Gazette, we present information that claims Melissa Mazzeo “nagged” Mayor Jimmy Ruberto when the mayor explained his rationale for not pursuing legal action against serial OT abuser, ex-city water department manager Matt Inhelder.
We asked Mazzeo, who goes by the neat e-mail identity of MelMaz, for a reply. This is what she sent in reply to The Planet:
“I made it clear when you originally contacted me that commenting on the Executive Session was out of bounds both legally and ethically. I guess your Someone In The Room lives under a different set of rules. My only comment to what you sent me is that it is the complete opposite from what you wrote in last week’s Gazette, so it makes me wonder (and laugh) at the intentions of your “source.” Sorry i cant say more. I would if I could.”