Tuesday, August 17, 2010

The First of Many Stories

From a reader:
Last fall she (Grafflin) posted a blog on the Albany Bicycle Master Plan process.  She complained that they hired a Canadian consultant (they were actually based in the US and happened to have a nearby Canadian office- considering our proximity to Canada this shouldn't such a big deal) and that the whole plan was lip-service.  She inserted opinions about what direction she thought the plan should go in and made sure she included some personal insults to the city staff and others involved.  I commented that having an outside eye (the Canadian consultant) could be a good thing and that it was too early to judge.  She replied back with a new post saying she didn't even care about the Bike Plan or bicycling and she thought it was all stupid and unnecessary anyway.  So I commented suggesting that if she shouldn't go back and forth on where she stands on the issue.  Either you support the plan and you don't approve of the process or you don't support the plan so the process is irrelevant.  She responded that I should probably stop reading her blog if I don't like that she goes back and forth on an issue.  Regardless of whether the city will carry out the recommendations in the plan or if the plan is all it could be, I think she did "reporting" on it a real disservice.  I've seen her go back and forth on other issues on her blog too and if flooded with comments she just throws up her hands and says "I don't really care anyway." 
Do you have a story? Send me an e-mail at saynotoaco@gmail.com and I'll share it here. Anonymity is assured.

Metroland has (very quickly) caught wind of Say No to ACO. Check out the post here. Make sure you read the comments!

Finally, I've never done a blog before. If you have any suggestions for Say No to ACO, please pass them along.

This is just the beginning. Spread the word. Ms. Grafflin must be held accountable.

Monday, August 16, 2010

The Comment Theresa Grafflin Doesn't Want You To See

 On August 11, 2010, Theresa Grafflin, aka "Albany Citizen One," posted this "story": 
May I, Ms. Golby?
You probably heard that I attended the County Ledge meeting on Monday and, since the Common Council's Pesticide meeting was ably covered, I opted to focus on to the County Ledge...hey, someone's gotta do it.
Fortunately, for my entertainment value, I had a few moments and dropped into the Common Council Pesticide meeting just to see what was going on. At the table was the Cornell Cooperative guy, Tom Gallagher, who is a member of the County's committee on pesticides which was created the same time as the City's committee. (giggle!) The guy knew his stuff and you can watch the whole thing at ACT should you have the desire to commit an hour of your day to pesticides.
Now, you're probably wondering about the title of this post...it is, in fact, not pesticides, but Ms. Golby...freshman councilman from the 10th. While, I was quite disillusioned with Ms. Golby during her debates with Mr. Scalzo...I assumed she would "ripen" with time. Since my criticism of her habit of voting "present" (because, as she so eloquently noted, she was confused or she really, really likes NYSTI) has ceased, I have been patient.
(A bit on that...everyone of our legislators was elected and is paid to be informed of the legislation and the will of their citizen constituents....I vote present every meeting because I'm in the room...the entire ward loses their vote when your leadership votes present.)
Now, I'm pretty darned old and I've seen a lot changes in the way Women are treated in society and I was part of the effort to dispel that "little lady" image in the business climate of South and in the North. You're going to find this hard to believe, but Texan women still aren't nearly as "free to speak their minds" as Yankees....in public, anyway. (And ya wonder why I'm like I am!) So, I get all kinds of irked when a woman is elected to office and displays the stereotypical behavior of the "hormonal woman" discussed at old boy tables. Stop! I want good, rational, informed leaders who don't twirl their hair and end their sentences with question marks...I want decisive and assertive women who aren't afraid to take a stand but are still rational enough to examine the alternatives. Give me Eleanor Billmyer...give me Carolyn McLaughlin, give me Christine Benedict, give me Helen DeFossis and give me Nancy Burton. (Yes, sorry for those I left out...there are many women in New York who fit this description, I just have so much space.)
So, what brings me to this tirade? In the middle of the pesticide meeting, Ms. Golby threw a "hissy fit" when MOB (Mike O'Brien) asked one question too many...politely, I might add. Golby hands began flailing when the questioning was going in a direction which might not go in the direction she preferred (a total ban on all pesticides might not be beneficial...yes, there could be exceptions.) In the video below, Ms. Golby introduces all participants in the room...(listen to Tracy Flick accent) and then the meeting takes off...I was shocked when my focus on the civil discussion being had was interrupted with an outburst from Ms. Golby.
Seems the meeting was getting out of control (I hadn't noticed...I usually do.) She then demanded that all committee members must raise their hand and wait for her to call on them to speak! (Da Boyz, ACO and even that darned TU reporter barely contained the giggles...what to do, what to do?) So, immediatately upon the group reprimand, Rozy's hand shoots in the air and, like a patient student, he holds it aloft while Golby begins to reprimand MOB for again asking a question without permission from the chair. Rozy deadpans..."he probably saw that I had my hand in the air but you weren't calling on me."
The proper way to hold an adult meeting, Ms. Golby, is not to "raise your hand until you are recognized" the chair is usually intelligent enough to conduct a meeting with a nod of recognition...here's an example for the slower "leaders" out  there...it's kinda like an auction...a nod from the speaker and a return nod from the chair is a respected method of communication. Exceptions are in areas larger than the kitchen table...areas larger than whispering distance from the chair.
Still...the image of Rozy with his hand held high in the air is one I'll treasure always.....so, thank you for that Ms. Golby.
She closes the post with a clip of the alleged "hissy fit." After reviewing the clip, it turns out there really was no "hissy fit." It also turns out that this post is filled with blatant misinformation and gross exaggeration. This is a theme with ACO and I decided to call out her factual inaccuracies and say what many Albanians have long thought about Albany Citizen One. Here's my comment: 

Ms. Grafflin, I've never liked your blog, but sometimes I have to force myself to read it because of the nonsense you spew. Your blog shouldn't be given an iota of credibility and this post exemplifies why. 
1. Your "hissy fit" characterization of Golby's behavior is flat out wrong. I watched the video and I can't imagine any reasonable person would agree with you. Golby was calm and respectful in her tone. I encourage anyone who reads this post to watch the clip and not take your blatantly misleading words as an accurate description.
2. Golby does not have a "habit" of voting present. Here's how the dictionary defines "habit": An acquired behavior pattern regularly followed until it has become almost involuntary. For example, the habit of looking both ways before crossing the street. If my memory serves me, Golby has voted "present" just a few times. That hardly constitutes a "habit." A particularly important string of "no" votes from Golby that comes to mind is her opposition to blindly approving the landfill expansion. Take use of a dictionary and get your facts straight. While I'm at it, invest in a book on grammar and punctuation.
3. I know you aren't a big fan of spelling, but for goodness sake, the former President of the Albany Common Council's last name is "Desfosses." http://www.albany.edu/~desfosse/ 
If I were you, that misspelling would make me very red in the face. 
4. Your implication that Golby is not intelligent is glaringly false. A simple internet search reveals a lot of information that rebuts your claim: 
You are a poor writer, journalist, and blogger. Why you are given journalist credentials, at all, continues to amaze me. 
Ms. Grafflin refused to post my comment and, instead, made a passive aggressive, and (once again) incorrect, response to my comment in an August 16, 2010 post:
FYI...to the commenting person who "forces yourself to read this blog"...go post your ill-informed spew on one of those obscure blogs you listed in your comments and, hey, I can deal with having 66,999 rather than 67,000 readers....yes, unique returning readers...NOT pageviews. Go, be gone with ya.
Ms. Grafflin's first claim is that my comments are incorrect. Points 1 and 4 , I suppose, are gray areas of interpretation. However, after watching the clip several times, calling Golby's behavior a "hissy fit" is clear hyperbole. Additionally, there is no evidence I could find of Golby being unintelligent. It makes me wonder if she has some sort of personal vendetta against the Councilmember. 

Ms. Grafflin calls the "blogs" I cite "obscure." As you can see, the last two links I post are letters to the editor written by Golby and were published in the Albany Times Union. It is not a "blog" and it is certainly not "obscure." Golby's blog "Qualities of Life in Albany" is well maintained, has a lot of good information, and was featured on All Over Albany. Where is the obscurity in that? 

I know this is not the first time Ms. Grafflin has used her blog as a way to advance her personal vendettas and quench her insatiable desire to cause drama where none exists. If you have a story about a personal experience with Ms. Grafflin and her blog, Albany Citizen One, please e-mail me at saynotoaco@gmail.com. I'll be happy to share your story, while guaranteeing absolute confidentiality to the e-mailer. 

It is time for Ms. Grafflin to start acting like a responsible journalist.