Monday, August 20, 2007

Let My Fingers Do The Talking

Let's just recap all the events of the past week in Trenton that have left my hands exhausted from typing:

The week started with the discovery of a video produced in the manner of a movie trailer for an action film that touted the accomplishments and credentials of our own Mayor Douglas H. Palmer. The video was made by the US Conference of Mayors, a lobby group that Mayor Palmer currently presides over. It was filled with in-jokes and padded with TV and film clips. A DVD with the video plus a longer, more serious one was sent to select individuals in the area.

From this viewer's perspective, the video was in poor taste considering the state of our city. We'll comment on that at a later date.

Following on the heels of the release of the video, the September issue of Esquire hit newsstands. Inside was a pictorial shot at the Conference of Mayors Convention in LA in June. And there was "Dapper Doug" with a full page photo modeling a very expensive suit, shirt and tie.

More inflated that the cost of the clothes were the self-serving quotes that accompanied the image.

In a newspaper article reporting on the Mayor's Publicity Blitz, Mr. Palmer feigned humility and embarrassment at all the attention. A few days later the editors of the same publication called him on it by suggesting he could simply say "No" to these TV appearances, magazine layouts, etc.

On Thursday came the revelation that Dennis Gonzalez, a self-described "loyal employee of Mayor Palmer" sent a letter to a private citizen threatening to sue for libel and slander unless that citizen offered up a spoken apology at that night's City Council meeting followed by publishing newspaper ads with the same apology. And all the Citizen had done was ask for an status update on the various and sundry development projects that had been proposed since Mr. Gonzalez had become a city employee.

Imagine being sued for asking questions of your local government!

And to cap off the week, a dedicated and effective Police Detective was notified (while on vacation no less) that he was being reassigned to patrol in a seemingly deliberate attempt to weaken the Police/Community relationship in the City's South Police District.

Yup, folks. There is plenty of fodder for conversation in the events of last week.

Meet me out on the stoop and we'll talk about 'em.

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