MORANDI GETS OFF TO FAST START … PEDA WANTS TO SHUT YOU OUT … MR. MITT HAS HEALTH CARE RX … DO YOU KNOW A HERO? … plus … PEDA, BB HOOPLA ODD CONSIDERING NO PLANS HAVE BEEN SUBMITTED (ACCORDING TO CORYDON)
By DAN VALENTI
PLANET VALENTI News and Commentary
(FORTRESS OF SOLITUDE, MONDAY, JAN. 9, 2012) — THE PLANET had a lovely out-of-state weekend, being an idiot savant when it comes to football picks (as my friend John Foster would say to the Swami about my football expertise along the lines of idiot savant, “You got that half right”). Incidentally, the Swami says “Hey” t0 Mailman to the Stars, Billy Turner. We called wins by the Texans and Saints on Saturday, the GIants and Tebows on Sunday. In Tebow’s case, we even had him winning in OT. Smoking hot, baby.
MORANDI GETS OFF TO FAST START — Bravo to my Right Honorable Good Friend, Kevin Morandi, Peter White‘s successor as the Ward 2 representative. Morandi got himself up at an ungodly hour and made time from a busy morning to attend the 8 a.m. PEDA meeting on Friday, Jan. 6. THE PLANET applauds this interest and this activism. What we see here, friends, is a councilor educating himself on one of the key issues, and maybe the most important issue, that will come up in the next two years. His Ward 2 constituents and people the city over should be grateful for that level of concern so early on the job. Kudos to every citizen who made that meeting, which was the most at a PEDA meeting since Peter Arlos was knee-high to Zeus. Praise also (and again) to former Ward 4 councilor Mike Ward, who led a petition drive against the proposal to put B-level Big Box retail shopping in 1`6 acres of the PEDA land. Ward’s continued involvement in the affairs of the city can only harbor good. NEXT PEDA MEETING OF FEB. 8.
THEY WANT TO SHUT ‘WE THE PEOPLE’ OUT — If you went online to the William Stanley Business Park or PEDA websites expecting to find an announcement of the Jan. 6 board meeting or the agenda, you likely went away empty handed. People: They don’t want you butting into your business. They see PEDA as their business, a private fiefdom fit only for the robber barons. You are nothing. You are less than nothing in their eyes. THE PLANET has privately taken guff for putting the spotlight on PEDA, and let us share something: We will keep doing it. We don’t rattle. We will not be intimidated. We will not be filed, stamped, briefed, or debriefed (nod to Patrick McGoohan). THE PLANET shall be highlighting the developments of PEDALS and every PEDA board meeting.
PEDA AGENDA REVEALS THE PROBLEM — If you did manage to find the agenda, you will find five major sections: Administration, Executive Director’s Report, Meeting Calendar (next meeting is scheduled for Feb. 8, 2012; circle that date), Executive Session, and Adjournment. What’s missing here? PEDA doesn’t think anything is missing. We The People know better. We The People know that a public input session is missing. THE PLANET calls upon Mayor Dan Bianchi, the city council, and the PEDA Board to change the rules of order to allow a public input session somewhere on the agenda. Between today and Feb. 8 allows plenty of time to get this done. The People must be heard! We The People will not take no for an answer.
HEALTH INSURANCE SCANDAL, AND MR. MITT’S SOLUTION — The United States health care system is a legal crime in the making. The notion that an employer should be responsible for a worker’s health insurance was one of the craziest ideas introduced. A much better solution would have been, and will still be, what is called “the individual mandate,” a requirement that every American buy (or be given as part of National Health) health insurance. If a purchase, health insurance would be handled no different than home insurance or car insurance. When Mitt Romney was governor of Massachusetts, he introduced a version of the individual mandate. It wasn’t perfect, but the Commonwealth is better off for it. Romney’s idea works, because, as he explains, “To have people show up at a hospital when they get sick and expect someone else to pay” is wrong. The individual mandate approach gets rid of the free loaders, who use up inordinate amounts of health care (going to the emergency room for a hangnail) and stick the hospital (whichsticks the taxpayers) with the bill.
DO YOU KNOW OF A HERO? — THE PLANET gets bombarded with press releases of all sorts. The vast majority head to the circular file. However, we want to pass this one along. It’s about heroes. We think heroes are important. Last week, we received a missive from the Congressional Medal of Honor Foundation in Washington.
Here’s part of the announcement:
WASHINGTON, January 5, 2012 – The Congressional Medal of Honor Foundation today announced it is now accepting nominations for the Citizen Service Before Self Honors, which recognizes and honors those ordinary Americans who become extraordinary through their indomitable courage and selflessness.
Citizen Service Before Self Honors are unique, because they are presented to unsung heroes by our nation’s most honored heroes—the fewer than 90 living recipients of our nation’s highest award for valor—the Medal of Honor. The recipients comprise the Congressionally chartered Medal of Honor Society, which is one of the most exclusive societies.
Citizen Service Before Self Honors recipients represent the values of courage, sacrifice and selfless service. Medal of Honor recipients encourage individuals to nominate any United States civilian who has clearly demonstrated a willingness to sacrifice for others whether through a single act of extraordinary heroism at risk to one’s life or through a prolonged series of selfless acts. The nominee’s actions must epitomize the concept of “service before self” and must be performed “above and beyond” one’s professional area of responsibility or conduct.
Citizens may submit an eligible nominee by completing the nomination form online via the Citizen Service Before Self Honors website,www.CitizenServiceBeforeSelfHonors.org. The nomination period runs from Monday, November 14, 2011, through Friday, February 10, 2012.
THE PLANET hopes that Berkshire County can produce many nominees.
GETTING BACK TO PEDA — In the Boring Broadsheet‘s coverage of Tony Dobrowolski of the Jan. 6 PEDA meeting, he had these three paragraphs as his lead:
Good coverage by Tony, first off, who’s a pro. Second, the logic of Corydon Thurston is revealing. Responding to Mayor Bianchi’s well-aimed stun gun, Thurston says public input will happen but hasn’t thus far because the developer has not submitted plans to the city. Amazing, folks! Waterstone has yet to submit any plans, yet the deal has been in the works for a year. It also raises the questions of why the BB gave it the huge “Second Coming 1,000 Jobs EV Treatment.” The plans haven’t even materialized, and the BB trumpets the latest, greatest economic engine that’s going to save Pittsfield … and eviscerate downtown merchants.
WHAT ELSE YOU GOT? LOTS? WE, TOO, BUT IT SHALL HAVE TO WAIT UNTIL TOMORROW, WHEN THE PLANET RETURNS TO ORBIT NEAR YOU. UNTIL THEN …
“OPEN THE WINDOW, AUNT MILLIE.”
LOVE TO ALL.