Monday, August 20, 2007

Shocking news! Ted's not big on tolerance!

Oh boy, Ted's back in the news. Thankfully, this time it's just for having dumb ideas and not for bullying veterans or mistreating the hungry.

And in what will come as a surprise to no one, the homophobic guy who's led racially-charged marches through minority sections of town is advocating "Zero Tolerance".

Per yesterday's Sentinel Article:
Zero tolerance, from the city's police department to its code enforcement officers, is needed to revive the blighted neighborhoods here, according to mayoral candidate Ted E. DeSalvatore.

"I'm not looking for discretion, I'm not looking for diplomacy," he said in an interview this week with the Sentinel & Enterprise's editorial board. "I want to identify the hot spots, our blighted areas -- the worst ones -- and within them, which are the worst dwellings. Going in with the intention to make sure they stop doing business the way they're doing it no matter what."
Yeah, discretion and diplomacy are terrible traits in a leader! Heaven forbid we elect a mayor who understands that not everything is black and white!

Wait a second, dwellings do business? Huh?

Of course, it's not really fair to make fun of the guy's inability to form a coherent sentence. If it were, I'd have to make fun of this terribly poor choice of words (my emphasis):
"After dealing with drug dealers on the corner, my inspiration was to continue on," he said.
... and making fun of that is just too easy.

Then there's this one:
"I don't live far away from 'hell zone.' I'm on the edge of it," he said. "I walked it, I drive it. I'm pretty much like the thermometer, I've had a good grip on the pulse of the community."
It gives me an idea for a new campaign slogan for him, though. "Vote Ted, he's the thermometer of Hell zone!" If you're reading, Ted, you can use that one free of charge!

Also, way to badmouth Fitchburg some more! Nobody's at all tired of that. On the other hand, I have no difficulty believing that Ted's neighbors would view their neighborhood as "Hell Zone", I just suspect it's for different reasons than he does.

On to the zero tolerance bit though:
"I want a guy [for the new police chief] that's going to be a top cop. I want him to keep his nose out of the politics and I want to leave the social-service work to social-service workers," he said, offering praise for Rudolph Giuliani, former mayor of New York and current Republican presidential candidate's approach to combating crime in New York. "I believe we need to have pretty much a zero tolerance."
Oh man, do you really want to hitch your wagon to Rudy "my only accomplishment as mayor was my city got struck by a terrorist attack" Giuliani?

Okay, that's not entirely fair either. Prior to 9/11 Giuliani was better known for police brutality, increasing racial tensions, harassing a lot of innocent people for no reason, racial profiling, and of course cheating on his wife and generally treating his family members like shit. Why do you think his daughter supports Obama for president?

To continue:
DeSalvatore later said, "There have been a lot of restrictions on our local guys and girls," partly because of "a touchy-feely thing that was brought in by the previous chief. Nice guy, but I think he was much too soft for the environment that we're in."
I believe "guys and girls" here refers to police officers (and I'm sure the female officers love to be called "girls").

Of course, here's the big problem. Shockingly, the Sentinel neglected to put this statement in context, but I'll fill in the blank. Chief Cronin's approach was actually working quite well. I've written about it before here. In a nutshell, crime has been decreasing. Want to see for yourself? Go get the 2006 Fitchburg Police Department annual report here (it's a .pdf).

I'm not going to go into a whole analysis of the thing, but the "Crime Index" on page 10 (page 12 of the pdf) gives the basic story. Lower is better.
  • 2002: 2,302
  • 2003: 2,526
  • 2004: 2,546
  • 2005: 2,286
  • 2006: 1,927
Hmm, the facts seem to indicate that the crime rate has been improving! Seems like Cronin was on to something. What could it have been?

Here's an old quote from Cronin:
Cronin said the department has been focusing on more than just suppression, acknowledging through programs, reinforcement and advocacy that crime is a much larger issue affected by outside factors such as economics and race.

"We've generated a big picture way of looking at the problems," Cronin said. "You can't keep hitting things in one way, you can't keep arresting people and ignore the outside factors that have contributed to the crime, and minority status and poverty are right on top."
Yeah, that's a very sensible approach. One that actually addresses the source of the problems rather than just punishing people after the crime is committed. If you stop it at its roots you don't have to worry about that.

Of course, Ted would presumably call that "social service work", which as we know he doesn't care for. More sensible people would call it addressing the roots of the problem. If you want to keep crime down it makes a lot more sense to keep it from occurring in the first place. If you want to live in a police state though, Ted's your man!

Why does DeSalvatore keep harping on crime so much? Well, it's all he's got. As far as concrete plans for improving the city go, he's way behind Donnelly and Wong. Anyone who votes for him is going to do it because Ted's convinced them that they're in some sort of imminent danger and only he can protect them.

Unfortunately for his campaign (but fortunately for the people of Fitchburg) that's simply not true. Come the primary, Ted will hopefully realize what Republicans the country over have been finding out: you can only scare people into voting for you for a limited time. Once the truth becomes known and the boogeymen of your own creation dissipate, so does your political career.

Let's hope people realize that truth sooner rather than later.

10 comments:

ReallyRachel said...

Unicow,
DAMN you're good! What a great article.

The S&E article and your analysis brought to mind an image of DeSalvo as the Japanese soldier stranded on a desert island who doesn't realize the war ended years ago.

Time to move on, Ted.

Well, we understand that luck of the draw, DeSalvo has the candidate's column in this week's Pride. The question is, will he write it himself and have it ghost written as usual? (Fact, voice of experience here.)

Shalom

P.S. Are you Rachel? PF is now credited as yet another "Rachel controlled site." (I'd love to take credit for PF but honesty rules...) Man, but I'm a busy "girl!"

The Unicow said...

Rachel,

Thanks.

I'm pretty sure I'm not you. However, I can't rule out the possibility that you're controlling me with some sort of hypno-ray. If so, please stop.

I guess people have moved on from just accusing me of being people I'm not to accusing me of being "controlled" by people I've never met.

That's actually even more annoying, but at this point I can't be bothered to give a shit what crazy people think.

Fitchburg Ninja Supply said...

Does "zero tolerance" include building permits?

The Unicow said...

That's doubtful.

It probably doesn't involve unlicensed firearms either.

JustSayNoToDeSalvo said...

For the record, I'm still not Rachel.

Want to see a cop do a belly laugh? Bring up DeSalvo's name! Heard they're passing around Ted cartoons at the station. Your work, Unicow?

From the looks of the unfinished work and construction debris at his house he could use a visit from the Clean Streets folks. Take a good look at his house. It will give you an idea of his plans for Fitchburg.

The Unicow said...

If cops are really passing around my cartoon that would be about the most awesome thing ever. And if it's not mine, I'd like to see it. We could have reader-submitted cartoon time!

Of course, who better to recognize Ted's fearmongering for what it is than a Fitchburg police officer?

If I was in their shoes I imagine I'd be pretty sick of him belittling my work when the facts show they've been doing a pretty good job.

ReallyRachel said...

Well, a few of us from the DeSalvo neighborhood of Ward 4 have gotten together and compared notes.

Whatever "Hell Zone" this guy is living in is of his own making. Folks who have lived here all their lives say he's invented most of this garbage. He took credit for the bust of the one drug house practically next door to him that occurred without his knowledge or input (check the Sentinel archives on that one.) More of Chief Cronin's intervention.

We're really having a laugh about the sign wars. One neighbor put out a Wong sign, and DeSalvo went ballistic putting out multiple DeSalvo signs - up to a half dozen per yard, and many of them on city property.

Sure is beginning to look like the guy has a surplus of signs - not enough places to put them I suppose so he's pacifying himself with multiple signs on the same property.

News flash, Ted: It's not how many signs you have, it's how many people will let you put one up. And if the the number of signs were counted instead of votes, we wouldn't need to have those elections now would we.

Boy what a "Hell Zone" this is indeed - the voices of children playing and singing, people playing real music, the sounds of lawnmowers and weedeaters, heck, even the recorded church music. If this is hell those wayward homosexuals have nothing to worry about.

Only one problem regarding Ted and our future though: once this guy loses the election what's he going to do to occupy his time? That kind of negativity doesn't just spontaneously resolve.

Maybe we could find him a new hobby.

Shalom

Abacquer said...

At this point there's no way I'll ever vote for this guy... he's clearly crazy... I mean picking on wheelchair bound old men was pretty much the last straw for me. I'm not sure what his problem is, but with today's pharmacology there's no reason he should have to suffer. Get some meds, Ted!

In the meantime, I'm probably going to vote Wong. She seems to be smart and has useful financial skills... and hasn't exhibited one iota of paranoid delusion. Bonus!

The Unicow said...

Heh. It's pretty sad when one of the qualifications you look for in a candidate is "hasn't exhibited any paranoid delusions".

Not as sad as when some of the candidates fail that test though.

Fitchburg Ninja Supply said...

once this guy loses the election what's he going to do to occupy his time?

Maybe he'll take it in stride and reflect on the reasons why he lost, and it'll make him a better person. Maybe he'll realize that the world is fundamentally more complex than the sort of "black and white, right or wrong, you're either with us or against us" kind of mindset that he has historically embraced, and he'll begin to champion a more nuanced, methodical, thoughtful approach to difficult problems.

Also, maybe I'm an enchanted unicorn named "Sarah". Yes, I'm Sarah, the enchanted unicorn, riding my magic rainbow from Rainbow City.