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**UPDATED** !!FLASH!! NICHOLS TO RUN FOR MAYOR!! plus, ANOTHER STORY THE EAGLE DIDN’T WANT YOU TO SEE.

BY DAN VALENTI

DEC 19, 2010: This update:

— THE PLANET will be interviewing Joe Nichols on his intentions in the coming week. We shall file a report.

— We have not heard from Jonathan Lothrop on our e-mail, shared with you below. We also have not heard from MAyor Jimmy Ruberto, whom we solicited for comment on the news that Ward 7 councilor intends to challenge for the corner office in 2011.

— We shall leave this post on Nichols up for another day, since the weekends require time for news to circulate. That said, THE PLANET has noticed a spike of late in our weekend traffic. Good sign. There is a pulse out there. We shall, together, continue to grow and provide a legitimate alternative to the Establishment Media, which seeks to keep you in the dark, and if not that, then to put you to sleep, and if you won’t tap a nap like a good little sheep, you will pay the price. THE PLANET will be “going into the Temple” and overturning a lot of tables in 2011.

— Calls to anyone who witnessed an unusual phenomenon in the southern sky, today, around 3 p.m. It has to do with what appears to be sightings of dual suns in the Berkshire County sky, looking south, at that hour. THE PLANET has received a couple reports of a separate, sun-like disc, seen in the southern sky. The disc was spinning and shooting off colors. Please respond if you saw anything unusual. We ask because we received reports from a couple of highly believable, no-s=nonsense sources.

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THE PLANET BRINGS YOU THIS EXCLUSIVE: WARD 7 COUNCILOR JOE NICHOLS HAS DECIDED TO RUN FOR MAYOR IN 2011. ACCORDING TO A WELL-PLACED SOURCE, NICHOLS HAS DECIDED TO RUN SO THAT HE

JOE NICHOLS: THE PLANET has learned that Nichols will run for mayor of Pittsfield in 2011. Photo credit: iBerkshires.com.

CAN “serve the residents of this city in a respectful manner.” Nichols says “will work hard at lowering the tax burden on homeowners and businesses by slowing down spending which is not necessary.”  He says he wants “to utimately make Pittsfield a more attractive city to invest in and create jobs thus growing the tax base.” — DAN VALENTI

— END OF FLASH —

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BY DAN VALENTI

EDITOR’S NOTE — LATER IN THIS COLUMN, THE PLANET BEATS THE EAGLE AGAIN. WE SHARE ANOTHER STORY THEY DIDN’T WANT YOU TO KNOW ABOUT, BECAUSE IT INVOLVES TWO OF THEIR SAINTED DEMOCRATS, THE LAME DUCKS DAN BOSELY AND DENIS GUYER. BUT FIRST …

THE PLANET ... and another Holy Man.Well, let’s see: in the past two days, I’ve been likened by my critics to Julian Assange, hero of Wikileaks, and comedian Chelsea Handler. A poster today says THE PLANET is like Handler: lots of people follow but no one take them seriously. We shall leave that to others. We will point out that we take both comparisons as compliments (it’s spelled with an “i” and not an “e”, “Pittsfield Believer”).

To be compared with Assange is to be called a champion of free speech and We The People’s right to know what its government is up to. To be compared with Handler is to be called a person with wit, not afraid to apply the stinging end of it.

CHELSEA HANDLER: On second thought, she looks nothing like Dan Valenti.

Actually, Handler and THE PLANET share some other things.

Comedy: She does standup. I DID standup in college and during the 1980s.

Books: We are both best-selling authors.

Religion: She is Jewish, reformed, and I am Jewish reformed reformed (also know as Catholic).

We find it interesting that my critics are trying to make ME the story. They won’t take up my arguments and they are afraid of debate. They therefore launch into the only thing they have left: ad hominum attacks, which have the beneficent effect of proving my points. Agree with my postings or not, THE PLANET issues no opinion without signing our name to it. My opponents do not do that.

THE PLANET issues this debate challenge: Anyone who wants to argue the other side of any issue brought up on this website (downtown, Interprint, PEDA, politics, North Korea, etc.), step forward. Put yourself on the line. Answer the call. If you agree to a live debate, no notes, in a public forum, just let me know. We shall get it on. This offer remains open to Dec. 25 as a Christmas gift to anyone out there who wants to shut me up in public. You bring your seconds. I’ll bring mine. We can sell tickets for charity.

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In the interests of open government, THE PLANET shares this e-mail, sent moments ago to Ward 5 City Councilor Jonathan Lothrop:

Any resemblance between the politician in this cartoon and JONATHAN LOTHROP is strictly a coincidence.

MY RIGHT HONORABLE GOOD FRIEND JONATHAN
As you may have heard, you are the recipient of the inaugural DUNGHEAP AWARD, given out by www.planetvalenti.com to the public official or personality who over a recent period of time has let We The People down the most egregiously.

I would like to post your comments about winning. Feel free to reply, and I shall share your thoughts with the readers of my website.

Don’t keep up the bad work.

Merry Christmas,
THE PLANET

PS You used to be for the Little Guy. What happened?

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THE PLANET SHALL INFORM YOU of what my RT. HONORABLE GOOD FRIEND replies.

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EXCLUSIVE TO BERKSHIRE COUNTY: THE BERKSHIRE EAGLE DIDN’T WANT YOU TO KNOW ABOUT THIS, SO THEY KEPT IT AWAY FROM YOU. WE PASS ALONG THIS REPORT BY OUR COLLEAGUE HILARY CHABOT OF THE BOSTON HERALD. HILARY NAMES DENNIS GUYER AND DAN BOSELY AS TWO OF THE LAME DUCK POLS GETTING THAT FINAL GRAB AT FREE TAX DOLLARS. THE PLANET MAKES NO JUDGMENT ON WHETHER THIS GRAB IS RIGHT OR WRONG. YOU CAN DECIDE FOR YOUR SELF.

Hillary ChabotBy Hillary Chabot
Saturday, December 18, 2010 - Updated 5 hours ago

Lame-duck pols nab nearly $100G in per diems

By Hillary Chabot
Saturday, December 18, 2010 - 
+ Recent Articles + Email

Lame-duck lawmakers nabbed nearly $100,000 in a last grab from taxpayers by claiming travel stipends even as Beacon Hill was shuttered for half the year, with one departing politician saying he’s using the plum perk to tide him over until his pension kicks in — next month.

“There will be a hiatus until I collect my retirement. It takes a little bit of the edge off for the next few weeks,” said state Rep. Robert S. Hargraves (R-Groton), who’s pocketed $4,342 in taxpayer-funded travel reimbursements this year on top of his $61,440 salary.

The controversial payments are based on how far a lawmaker lives from the State House and are meant to be used for travel, dining and lodging while legislators are working.

But the stipends kept coming this year long after formal sessions ended July 31. In all, 30 departing lawmakers scored a staggering $91,555, a Herald review found.

Among them:

• State Rep. Christopher J. Donelan (D-Orange) put in the most per diems of any outgoing legislator, raking in $7,350 for 147 days; driving in from Orange, 72 miles from Boston, he got $50 for every day he came in to the State House.

DAN BOSELY, "Lord, I'm a travelin' man."

• State Rep. Daniel E. Bosley (D-North Adams) pulled in $6,120 for 68 travel days on top of his $76,000 salary. He asked to be reimbursed for travel days until Nov. 11, four months after lawmakers formally closed up shop.

• State Rep. Brian P. Wallace (D-South Boston) requested 143 days of travel pay despite living only 2.6 miles away from the State House. He took home $1,430 in addition to his $61,440 salary.

Neither Donelan nor Wallace returned calls for comment, but Bosley defended the stipends.

“I’m unapologetic about it,” he said. “Per diems are the way that we equalize the playing field in this state and let anyone other than rich people serve in the Legislature.”

Bosley added that legislative work doesn’t end once lawmakers are out of formal session. He said he’s gotten two regional bills passed in the past two weeks.

The formal legislative calendar ends July 31 during election years to allow lawmakers to run for re-election and prevent retiring legislators from pushing through controversial pet projects.

While business is still conducted on Beacon Hill during informal sessions, attendance is often sparse.

“It’s a problem because they have a pay structure and a benefit structure that are wholly untethered to the realities that workers in the private sector face,” said Andrew Moylan, director of government affairs at the Washington D.C.-based National Taxpayers Union. “It’s a symptom of these full-time legislatures — they turn it into a way of life and not just a public service. It contributes to a larger and more expensive government.”

DENIS GUYER: One last hurrah.

But some legislators remain undeterred despite the public cost. Democratic state Rep. Denis E. Guyer of Dalton, who’s already pulled in $4,510 for 108 days this year, said he’ll likely cash in more per diems before his last day Jan. 4.

“I’ll probably put in for a couple more,” Guyer said. “I’ll be in there to clean up my office next week.”

hchabot@bostonherald.com
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17 Responses to “**UPDATED** !!FLASH!! NICHOLS TO RUN FOR MAYOR!! plus, ANOTHER STORY THE EAGLE DIDN’T WANT YOU TO SEE.”

  1. Jim Gleason
    December 18, 2010 at 6:23 pm #

    And Bosely wanted to be Sheriff. He prob. would have charged for the ride fron NA to Pittsfield if he hadn’t gotten embarrassed in the primary.

  2. Keeler
    December 18, 2010 at 7:46 pm #

    Holy cow! Joe Nichols for mayor? I don’t know how you guys got this story because I heard Joe wasn’t going to announce anything until May. I can only say as a young person recently moved to Pittsfield only to get killed by taxes I shall take his bid very very seriously., I wish Mr. Nichols the best with this. Wonder how long it will take the dialy newspaper to catch up?! they seem to be eating Valentis diust.

  3. Dean
    December 18, 2010 at 8:44 pm #

    Well the Nichols story isn’t even comment worthy yawnnn…. but the stipends in my mind aren’t a big deal and I am glad you left it up to reader opinion. Unlike my dear friend Mr. Gleason up there I don’t think it is a bad thing that our legislators from this side of the state get reimbursed for expenses to get to and from Boston etc. And I can’t disagree with Dans statement that lawmaking and representation is a 365 day a year job, so its a story but it doesnt bother me one bit. pshh Joe Nichols, whose next Jonathan Melle?

    • Keeler
      December 19, 2010 at 10:34 am #

      Actually, i agree with Dean. If have no pbroblem if our state reps get gas money for the long trip. I thank this site for furnishing the information though. Its good that we are finally learning a few things and aren’t so darned depemdent on the eagle.

  4. rick
    December 19, 2010 at 8:13 am #

    the more hats in the ring the better. north st. now needs to stand on its own. if nichols stays the same way running for mayor as he seems to be on the council this could be one for the pittsfield mayoral race history books. nichols dosenst seem to hold j-ro in his highest or lowest esteem. from what i see its contempt. you go joe!!!! bring respect back to the corner office.
    ,

  5. Jim Gleason
    December 19, 2010 at 8:43 am #

    Congrats, Joe. I wish you all the luck in the world in this endeavor. Now if Bianchi runs maybe we can get ruberto out in the primary. Wouldn’t that be awesome!!

  6. Keeler
    December 19, 2010 at 10:36 am #

    A Nichols-Bianchi-Ruberto primary wont be good the the maytor. If he’s not knocked out in the primary, he will face a combined vote against him in november. Glad you posted this news which to me is a big story, since I like Joe and his tellit like it is style. Go Joe!

  7. PITTSFIELD BELIEVER
    December 19, 2010 at 10:39 am #

    You got to be kidding me. Nichols is a freshman councilor from a rinky-dink Ward, and now he feels he’s ready to be mayor? We already have a great mayor in Jim Ruberto, who has done more for Pittsfield than any mayor in history. This will only rally people to Jim’s cause. Valenti has just inadvertently done the cause of progressive politics a great favor. Mark my word Nichols will back out and wont even take out papers, that’s how scared he’s going to be.

  8. PITTSFIELD BELIEVER
    December 19, 2010 at 12:46 pm #

    Nichols has no chance. None. Less than Bianchi. Trust me, both these jokers won’t run. They won’t want to face what they’ll get if they do. Ask Bianchi about it. Ask him is he wants more. Nichols has a big mouth and nothing else.

    • Joe Pinhead
      December 19, 2010 at 2:53 pm #

      ” They won’t want to face what they’ll get if they do. Ask Bianchi about it. Ask him is he wants more.” Please do expand on this comment. It almost sounds as if your saying Ruberto cant stand on his record and needs to use some sort of intimidation tactic. Is that what your comment means? please help me to understand your great wisdom.

  9. rick
    December 19, 2010 at 1:45 pm #

    whats needed is a good old fashion ,gloves off.in ur face donnybrook election for mayor. i think joe can handle himself in that ring. roberto needs to hire pr people from boston to get nasty for him,i dont think he can dance on his own,a little to prissy.

  10. Nancy
    December 19, 2010 at 2:25 pm #

    Yahoo! Its about time the people have a candidate for Mayor. Nichols will kick butt in this race because he is honest and honesty always wins! He is following no one. He is a leader and follows his heart. Three cheers for Pittsfield!! We finally will have a chance. Go Joe!!!!

  11. Nancy
    December 19, 2010 at 2:25 pm #

    Yahoo! Its about time the people have a candidate for Mayor. Nichols will kick butt in this race because he is honest and honesty always wins! He is following no one. He is a leader and follows his heart. Three cheers for Pittsfield!! We finally will have a chance. Go Joe!!!!

  12. DJ
    December 19, 2010 at 3:53 pm #

    Nichols isn’t corrupt enough to be mayor or to beat a real scumbag like Ruberto.

  13. Craig's List
    December 19, 2010 at 4:21 pm #

    All I can say is if Pittsfield Believer is any indication of Ruberto’s following, I’ll vote for “anybody but the mayor.” There’s does seem to be a threat in his tone, as noted. That’s not what we want or deserve. Go Joe Nichols. Go Dan Bianchi. Anybody but Ruberto. That’s my new slogan, since I’m sick of his taxes, his arrogance, and that he still pals around with creeps like the accused child molester you know who.

  14. Joe Pinhead
    December 19, 2010 at 6:30 pm #

    My slogan was and still is
    DRIP
    Don’t
    Return
    Incumbent
    Politicians

  15. rick
    December 20, 2010 at 3:58 am #

    question….whats lower than a child molester … a politician