Upstream. A Mohawk Valley Blogzine.

Monday, May 01, 2006

Glenn Heller Of WAMC Pirate Radio Responds To Upstream.

Mr. Weaver,

Why does it take a ‘watchdog’ or ‘gadfly’ to let people know that the head of a local charity is taking a whopping pay raise and getting full time, free use of a new car, all at the expense of the charity? Why aren’t the Albany media — the folks who are getting paid theoretically to find out about local things that smell bad — ferreting out this stuff instead of a volunteer ‘watchdog’ like me with meager resources?

Regarding Alan Chartock: There is a reason why there is so much fear and loathing amongst good people who work, or have worked, at WAMC. How else do you think I find out about the stuff about which I write?

By the way, you might want to check out Wikipedia’s entry about Mr. Chartock. You should also consider adding your own material to the entry.

Thanks for your insightful review. My writing appears ‘intelligent’ only because I use ’spellchecker’ before posting online (something far too many other blogs — not yours — and e-mails could benefit by using).

As to your observations, you are on-point in your suggestion that I consolidate sites/blogs. I don’t know if that is going to happen anytime soon though, because of time considerations. Plus, though I hardly ever get a chance to update nowadays, I like having a choice of venues depending on subject matter.

Regarding the ‘gadfly’ label that too often gets attached. I am used to labels. Labels are a pejorative method by which the ‘legacy’ or ‘driveby’ media categorize people and stories in order to detract from or undercut the ‘message’.

Example: When I lived full-time in The Berkshires, I spent some time turning over a lot of rocks — sacred cow Alan Chartock was just one of them — mostly uncovering violations of Massachusetts Competitive Bidding statutes — i.e.: I formally notified State authorities concerning various sweetheart deals I uncovered between municipalities and favored contractors — deals that had been in place for decades and which the local media knew about but which unexplainably chose to ignore.

These were ‘no-bid’ municipal contracts, highly illegal, which resulted in favored contractors raking in millions of dollars over the years without the nicety of having to compete: Contracts for paving, installation of sewer lines in streets, road building — you name it.

As a result of my actions, the State came in and enforced the rules. The State IG and the State Dept. of Labor and Industries cited cities and towns for violating Mass. laws. Things changed — I think and hope for the better.

Back then, The Berkshire Eagle was labeling me ‘The Watchdog’. {When friends would phone me in The Berkshires and ask what I was up to, I’d say, “I’m being called ‘The Watchdog’ — so I’m sitting here watching my dog!”) So now, I am being called ‘Gadfly’. It’s all the same. It’s called ‘Shoot-the-Messenger’ syndrome.

Thanks for taking the time to peruse my sites.

GMH

P.S. http://www.montereynews.org/ is another of my Web sites that I should update more often.

6 Comments:

  • Maybe someone should ask Mr. Heller about gasoline price gouging... That's a timely topic.

    http://www.ca1.uscourts.gov/cgi-bin/getopn.pl?OPINION=91-1811.01A

    http://openweb.tvnews.vanderbilt.edu/1979-6/1979-06-13-CBS-16.html

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 8:55 AM  

  • I allowed the above anonymous comment to be published. Please note, however, that nowhere in either of the two links does it indicate whether or not the Mr. Glenn Heller charged with gasoline price gouging is the same Glenn Heller that so vehemently opposes Alan Chartock. Neither does either link mention whether of not this Glenn Heller was found guilty of price gouging. I have asked Glenn Heller to respond to this comment. Until then please be cautious in using these links. There are many Glenn Hellers on the internet. If the person who posted the above comment has proof that the links are referencing the same Glenn Heller of wamc.net, please give us the proof.

    By Blogger Dan Weaver, at 12:18 PM  

  • I'll be happy to answer any questions anyone has about the gasoline business.

    Point Numero Uno: Despite what the 'drive-by' media imply, there is simply no such thing as 'price gouging'.

    If you cannot afford to buy fuel for your vehicle maybe you should be using less expensive forms of transportation. (Most people ride bikes or mopeds in Africa and in Asia.)

    No one forces consumers to buy anything in the US. Water is $2.19 for 2.5 gallons (at Giant); A $150,000 home four years ago is now selling for $590,000 (in the Washington DC area); New York State charges at least $0.60 per gallon in gasoline taxes from the consumer (versus the retailer's $0.10 per gallon mark-up - if he's lucky).

    You could argue that all of the above are 'price-gouging', but
    people who fall for the 'price gouging' label are ignorant of basic economic principles, nor have they ever been successful in business.

    The world is literally awash in oil. The best way to lower price on any commodity is to increase supply, lessen demand, or both. If you do not like Capitalism, I suggest you try Communism. Buy your gas in Cuba, Venezuela, or North Korea.

    Any other questions?

    By Anonymous Glenn M. Heller, at 1:31 PM  

  • Oh and by-the-way: More 'shoot the messenger' syndrome:

    I absolutely, positively, most definitely AM the very same Glenn M. Heller who, from 1976 to 1985, was the lessee-dealer operating the Beacon Hill Gulf retail gasoline service station in Boston at Charles Street Circle.

    Hey pal, you got a problem with that?

    Now my question for you: How does operating a commercial business that sold high-priced products to the retail public on a 24/7 basis detract one iota from the facts posted on the http://www.WAMC.net Web site concerning WAMC-FM CEO Alan Chartock and his questionable shenanigans operating a supposedly not-for-profit public charity?

    $100 for a yearly membership on a so-called 'public' radio station? Now THAT'S gouging a gullible public!

    Breathlessly waiting for sentient replies.....

    By Anonymous Glenn M. Heller, at 1:57 PM  

  • I think Mr. Heller makes a good point. What he did in the 70s and 80s, regardless of whether or not it was right, has little to do with what is going on at WAMC now. Our whole judicial system would fall apart if we refused to let people testify at trials because of something they may or may not have done in the past. We give one criminal a break for testifying against another, so why shouldn't Mr. Heller have his say about Mr. Chartock? (By saying that, I am not implying that either man is a criminal).

    By Blogger Dan Weaver, at 9:26 PM  

  • Okay Weaver, now you've done it! Alan deleted his Wiki. Apparently the little professor was unable to cope with the open, uncontrollable nature of the medium.

    It's the same thing with cockroaches, when exposed to the light they scurry away.

    Dang!

    By Anonymous Glenn M. Heller, at 12:33 AM  

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