About Me

My photo
Nazareth, Pa., United States

Monday, February 18, 2008

Allentown's Propaganda Machine

I've been a vocal local government critic of Northampton County's plethora of dysfunctional governments over many years. In all that time, I can only recall one incident in which someone even came close to threatening me physically. Sure, former Northampton County Director of Administration Jim Hickey routinely threw me off the courthouse roof, but he did that to everybody. Most of my fall guys have actually treated me with respect. They recognize everyone's voice matters, especially in a representative democracy.

But in The People's Republic of Lehigh County, things are very different. Dissenters must be silenced. Chris Casey has regaled me with horror stories about things that have happened to him after he started complaining about things in Upper Macungie Township. It made no difference that he was right. Perhaps some day, he'll share the details with you.

I've also noticed there is little room for complaints about Allentown government, too. Those who do so are victimized and marginalized. Let me give you a recent example. On January 28, I told you about Allentown criminal mastermind Zee Weikel. She's that 75 year old miscreant who herself was mugged outside her apartment last year. When she dared conduct yard sales on the 1100 block of Allentown's Turner Street, Mayor Pawlowski unleashed his enforcement hounds to shut her down.

That post provoked a fairly heated reaction, as happens with nearly all of my Allentown posts. But most of us moved on the next day.

Not someone who calls himself "Ed."

Late last week, he exploded with a vicious diatribe against Lázaro Fuentes (with an á, damn it!), Michael Molovinsky, Scott Armstrong and yours truly. Instead of responding to the propriety of enforcing little known yard sale ordinances against a low income senior, this troll responded with personal attacks against each of us.

Those words will never hurt you.

Bernie: "is only known to his bellyaching companions and the leaders in business and commerce and government dont take him seriously as he is annoying and very small."

Molovinsky: "was ridiculed and trounced when he took himself seriously and made a run for mayor, the city has spoken loudly that no one knows how his mind works nor cares."

Armstrong: "is ever present at city council meetings bitching about stuff that no one else seems to care about. He is a case study for bad style and has a pit bull mind on a french poodle face and a voice that makes God cringe."

Funetes: "Lazaro's Hispanic Chamber may be down to 2 members soon, him and his wife , as he is a hispanic version of Scott. The chamber has no presence in the latino community or any where else, it has as much credibility as Lazaro's degree from Columbia University. What a joke the lot of you are.

Although "Ed" is obviously not Allentown Mayor Ed Pawlowski, his minions have done their best to shut down any dissent, particularly when it comes from Armstrong. Here are some of the love notes he's received:

I heard you on WAEB the other morning. You certainly have a big mouth. Instead of flapping your gums, why don't just keep sucking cocks? We in the neighborhood know exactly what you do, and to whom you do it. We are watching every move you make. We wonder what the members of Allentown City Council, would think of you, if they only knew. The next time you attend a Council Meeting, you are going to be exposed, for what you are. A cock sucker.

Have a great day,
From all us


Or this.

Hey,
Blow anyone today?
You know who we are!!
TaTa,
You, neighbor on the corner.


Words are one thing, but those sticks and stones will break your bones.

Words are one thing. But in addition to shouting down the voice of dissent in Allentown, physical intimidation is also used. Scott tells me "my car was vandalized with an M-80, and it was keyed countless times. The phone would ring when I entered the house and when I picked it up the caller would hang up; this happened routinely and was meant to send a message. My back door bell was rung in the middle of the night. My phone would ring at all hours with no one on the other end."

The Puff Blogs

If the threats and intimidation fails, there's always the puff blogs. And Allentown has plenty to tell you everything is wonderful. Allentown Good News, Seventh Street Now, Little Lehigh Manor and Our West End Neighborhood wave their pom poms, assuring you there's nothing to worry about. The puff bloggers? Joyce Marin, who is executive director of Allentown Economic Development Corporation, blogs at Good News. Jeff Chirico, the Little Lehigh blogger, is part of the puff news already produced at Team Tempo. Jeff Pooley one of the bloggers at the Seventh Street blog, is married to the Director of Allentown's Redevelopment Authority.

As for the anonymous blogger who has a particular disdain for Lázaro Fuentes (with an á, damn it!) and who is actually hiding behind a picture of a person he claims is his wife, he made the mistake of posting a comment late one night. Thanks to my trusty sitemeter, I have his identity nailed down to one of three possibilities, but will wait until I'm sure before outing him.

And I will out him.

I'm a miserable bastard ... from the boonies of Northampton County.

15 comments:

Anonymous said...

I find it somewhat ironic that the same person who claims Allentown's community groups and people are the solution to the city's issues also finds it necessary to criticize anyone who sees the city in a largely positive light.

Could there be an ulterior motive or hidden agenda here? Such obvious contradictions often suggest something is being hidden.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Dude, I have no hidden agenda. I'm from the boonies in NC, remember? I criticize those who hide the truth. I criticize those who try to shout out any form of dissent. What goes on in A-town is unhealthy for democracy.

Anonymous said...

As a nuetral observer in the whole Ed Pawlowski debate, I 've always felt that one of the Mayor's biggest faults is his lashing out at criticism or alternative viewpoints. This weakness was shared by his former boss and political ally Roy Afflerbach. Pawlowski could vastly improve his public image by listening to citizens and some cases agreeing to disagree with civility.

A.J. Cordi said...

Bernie,

I think Anon 2:53 is trying to take attention away from the quotes you provided.

There's no acceptable excuse for what was said, what was done, or what is likely still yet to happen.

Bernie O'Hare said...

And just to be clear, I do not believe "Ed" is Mayor Ed Pawlowski. I actually broke my own rule and slightly modified my post to make that clear after a reader called me to ask if I was attempting to make a direct connection.

Anonymous said...

BO, you are right on, you are a miserable bastard from the boonies of Northampton County. I love that line and will commit it to memeory.
You can surely be miserable but I haven't heard any real nasty words even from some of your ripest targets. I see former Reibman Administrators and even they don't dis you. They will concede thats Bernie he can get a real hair up his ample ass(I admit the ample was my poetic license). It seems many in wild Northampton County see your tirades as part of life in the pol lane.
In fact the former head of a NC dept. was very complimentary recently on your Atown-Lehigh Co. focus.
Now if only you, Angle and Stoffa would stop the three way and you would view the Stoffa Regime with your usual critical eye you would be a God among bloggers. Even Bill White another liver is wondering where is the beef. I realize Stoff was the anti-Reibman but there has been little to point too other than words.
Live long and prosper you Klingon.

Bernie O'Hare said...

"You can surely be miserable but I haven't heard any real nasty words even from some of your ripest targets."

In NC, we play hardball, but try not to take it personally. LC is not used to scrutiny, but I see dark clouds forming on the western horizon.

Bill Villa said...

"LC is not used to scrutiny, but I see dark clouds forming on the western horizon."

I see them too, finally; they're long overdue.
Let's hope it rains real hard. It'll wash the dirt away ...

Anonymous said...

Get your computer fixed in a hurry, bernie!

Anonymous said...

Annon 3:14
Even on his worst day Roy Afflerbach was not as big a hissy fit ass as Mr. Ed.
Roy was incompetent and a bit of a goof but not a bad guy overall. I have yet to find that redeeming quality to Paw.
I have met him a few times. He never remembers who I am and always looks constipated. To this day I do not know how he got elected, he has the personality of week old fish.

Anonymous said...

To this day I do not know how he got elected, he has the personality of week old fish.

He's wasn't Bill Heydt.

Anonymous said...

anon12:40 said "I have met him a few times. He never remembers who I am".

Well, that experience itsn't new.

I know of one person who gets continually ignored while he's busy thanking all the other people who "did something" - all the while he ignores that certain person in the entirety despite the fact that he surely wouldn't have experienced success without that specific contribution. Somtimes he walks right up to the group that person is part of, says hello to all but this one person, provides irrelevant commentary, says goodbye to all but that one individual, and walks away.

Numerous people have commented on it.

He's a jackass and has no social skills.

The other person obviously has some modicum of common courtesy and manners and never makes mention of his rudeness.

I wonder if both apples fell close to their respective trees? I am sure they did.

Anonymous said...

"I've also noticed there is little room for complaints about Allentown government, too. Those who do so are victimized and marginalized. "

So, to have an opinion counter to yours victimizes and marginalizes you? Come now, Mr. O'Hare. If someone else made such a dramatic statement, wouldn't you think, "wow, real drama king there!" In what way do dissenting opinions victimize you? How do they marginalize you?



"On January 28, I told you about Allentown criminal mastermind Zee Weikel. She's that 75 year old miscreant who herself was mugged outside her apartment last year. When she dared conduct yard sales on the 1100 block of Allentown's Turner Street, Mayor Pawlowski unleashed his enforcement hounds to shut her down."

Is this your example of how complaints victimize and marginalize? I'm trying to follow the logic. She complained about being mugged, therefore her yard sales were shut down? I'm thinking no. I think that her yard sales were shut down because they were illegal. The fact that she is 75 has nothing to do with it. Are you suggesting, Mr. O'Hare, that once one reaches seniority in our society that one reaches above-the-law status?

Does this then make your arguments ad hominem, i.e. you're misdirecting by appealing to an attack on Mayor Pawlowski as a mean man who beats up on old ladies? I thought you abhorred ad hominem attacks and blatant appeals to emotion.

Again, I challenge you to present to your audience of 700, without misdirection tactics to LaGata8484, that I have ever done anything other than present the issues. I challenge you to show The 700 that you have ever responded to said issues.

Please note, I have no particular affection for, nor animosity toward, Mayor Pawlowski. I just calls 'em as I sees 'em.

Much love,

Lijia Trivia Plenum

Anonymous said...

Bernie like others has his own opinions. If he likes you he LIKES you if he hates you he HATES you. For example he LOVES NoCo Exec. John Stoffa and viciously insults anyone who questions Her Stoffas actions. while if someone attacks Pawlowskyi he agrees. It is life.

Anonymous said...

Bernie like others has his own opinions. If he likes you he LIKES you if he hates you he HATES you. For example he LOVES NoCo Exec. John Stoffa and viciously insults anyone who questions Her Stoffas actions. while if someone attacks Pawlowskyi he agrees. It is life.