Ok, let me see if I've got this straight...
First we were racists, then we were nazis, and now, apparently, we are the mafia.
This can only mean one thing... my favorite Middleboro selectman and casino cheerleader is blogging again.
Just when I think I'm out... they pull me back in!
In his tireless effort to raise the level of the casino issue dialogue, Adam Bond first removed a link on his blog to casinofacts.org, because the CasinoFacts.org website links to...
(Quickly! Take the children out of the room!)
And blogs (translation: anti-casino blogs) according to Adam, are mean.
Yet, bada bing, in a display of irony, Mr. Bond continues to link to a web site which once opined that anti-casino folks were using scare tactics, bigotry, prejudice and hate to get their message across. (That was pretty mean.)
Stranger still, since Mr. Bond seems to think he's the one wearing the size XX-Large pearly white baseball cap in all this, is that his blog continues, as of this writing, to link to yet another certain pro-casino web site owner who
- has publicly called anti-casino activists racists, terrorists and liars (oh my!).
- ...and who, when desperate for a darker moniker, even sinks to the level of calling them pedophiles.
- ...and who ran a contest with a real cash-equivalent prize to humiliate an anti-casino blogger with sexually suggestive photos.
- ...and who threatened said blogger with violence
- ...and who purchased a domain name in that blogger's real name with an offer to sell it for the right price,
- ...and who's web site forum regularly features Middleboro town committee chairmen and others who lob threats of litigation at casino opponents like so many venom-filled intimidation grenades
- ...and who's website front page offers an ever-changing daily rant of nonsensical accusations blaming anyone and everyone except himself for all his problems.
But then, this volatile individual also sponsors Adam's weekly radio show, and casinofacts.org doesn't. So, I guess that makes it ok. (I keep forgetting that money makes everything OK with Adam.)
Fuggedaboutit. None of that matters. Because in the upside down bizarro world of Adam Bond, we - anti-casino bloggers - are the bad guys using 'extortion' and/or 'coercion' to attain our goals.
From a Coffee Shop Talk blog about recent attempts by some bloggers to get the aforementioned scary-wierd web site owner to take it down a couple notches:
"Extortion is commonly practiced by organized crime groups. The actual obtainment of money or property is not required to commit the offense. Making a threat of violence or a lawsuit which refers to a requirement of a payment of money or property to halt future violence or lawsuit is sufficient to commit the offense."
By the way, can someone tell me if is this an example of coercion?:
... Hurry up and vote for the agreement NOW or they'll come anyway and we'll get nothing...
Hmmm... sounds an awful lot like one of those offers you can't refuse...
Folks, wanna know why there are so many bloggers out there criticizing Mr. Bond and the casino project? Because they've done their research, that's why. They've read independent studies which indicate casinos bring increased violent and white collar crime, spousal abuse, divorce, bankruptcy, child abuse and neglect, gambling addiction and suicide. And because they watched a seriously, and horribly, flawed process take place over the summer. Not because they are any of the colorful labels that some pro-casino people have tired to pin on them.
Yet, our Mr. Bond feels personally persecuted, and perceives he is being held to a different standard.
Well... he is. Adam Bond is an elected official in the town of Middleboro. He ran for office, won, and became entrusted with doing the best job he can for the 22,000 folks who live there. But over the summer I watched him and the other board members cavelierly sell their town out to casino interests. And they never once appeared to understand or appreciate the magnitude and repercussions of their actions.
Outraged bloggers stepped in. We can't make policy, or sign multi-million dollar agreements or write off a portion of a 338 year old town, but we can comment on the actions of those who do.
Just look at the recent Middleboro town manager search. I know that many of us looked up the candidates on the Internet, and found them being discussed on blogs - and it was helpful in the decision process to read those opinions. People who are entrusted with profound responsibilities should be expected to come under such scrutiny. Yet Mr. Bond calls this a 'nightmare'.
What of the nightmare of those who may find their homes in the shadow of a looming 18 story gambling casino? Did he even hear the young man at the BIA hearing who worked hard and did his best to buy a home he now can't sell due to it's proximity to the proposed casino site? What of the nightmare of the father of twins who faces the prospect of raising them with a casino peering into their backyard? What of the nightmare of generations of future gambling addicts and their families?
What of my own nightmare, of being relentlessly harrassed for close to a year now by an obviously unstable and potentially dangerous individual legitimized by a sitting Middleboro selectman on his blog and radio show?
Why does Adam get to make the big decisions and get off nightmare free? Why does he seem to feel entitled to inflict carnage, then slip off quietly into the witness protection program?
I'm not trying to be some wiseguy, here. Democracy requires a system of checks and balances. Check, meet balance.
I have only one regret as a blogger - that our blogs weren't established before Mr. Bond and his crew had their way with the town of Middleboro. Perhaps then he, and they, would have thought twice before rushing into an agreement. Perhaps they would have done their homework. Perhaps they would have taken the time to hold public forums with people other than Glenn Marshall and a pack of money-hungry casino-shilling lawyers. Perhaps the gavel would have been given a rest. And perhaps, if they realized that someone, someday might be googling their name and clicking onto one of our blogs, they might have more fully considered what constitutes someone else's nightmare before inflicting one upon them.
Mr. Bond frequently states that he'd like to raise the level of the debate. What debate? He successfully managed to squelch any meaningful debate by rushing into the agreement, by co-authoring Section 22 B of that agreement, and by steadfastly ignoring the fact that the town voted No on Article 3 - that they didn't WANT a casino.
Let's face it, Mr. Bond just wants to raise the level of the debate so high that no one will be able to look down and see his own tracks in the mud.
Good luck, Mr. Bond. In the meantime, I’ll give your regards to Vito, Sonny, Tony, Paulie Walnuts, Uncle Junior and the rest of the family.