On Smashing the Plutocracy

From CBS News, our budding banana republic plutocracy/kleptocracy unravels itself:

An interview with Lloyd Blankfein is as rare as a look inside the Goldman Sachs money machine. He showed us one of seven trading floors at his Manhattan headquarters. Goldman is one of America’s most successful investment banks. It had net earnings of $4.4 billion dollars last year. When we asked Blankfein how to reduce the federal budget deficit, he went straight for the subject politicians don’t want to talk about.

BLANKFEIN: You’re going to have to undoubtedly do something to lower people’s expectations — the entitlements and what people think that they’re going to get, because it’s not going to — they’re not going to get it.

PELLEY: Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid?

BLANKFEIN: You can look at history of these things, and Social Security wasn’t devised to be a system that supported you for a 30-year retirement after a 25-year career. … So there will be things that, you know, the retirement age has to be changed, maybe some of the benefits have to be affected, maybe some of the inflation adjustments have to be revised. But in general, entitlements have to be slowed down and contained.

Blankfein is CEO of Goldman Sachs, a Wall Street institution that was about as deep into the Wall Street scandal and collapse of 2008 as could be.  Goldman Sachs received a $12 billion TARP bailout related to its holdings in then-defunct insurer AIG. Goldman Sachs repaid the government through a sale of equity in April 2009

Despite the fact that it’s become quite evident that Wall Street is Washington’s puppetmaster, and not vice-versa, Blankfein now has the audacity to come to Capitol Hill to lecture the government about good governance and how we need to aggressively cut so-called “entitlements” like Medicare and Social Security. As if caring for the sick and elderly was some sort of societal ill, while committing fraud against one’s own customers is perfectly reasonable, and the sanctions wrought therefrom a mere cost of doing business. 

Here’s what America’s favorite socialist Senator, Vermont’s Bernie Sanders has to say about it all. Thing is, he’s right, and the plutocracy must be exposed and, frankly, smashed and replaced with the representative democracy the Constitution guarantees. 

EPA Smart Growth Awards 2012

The EPA named its best smart growth projects of 2012, and named for “honorable mention” is Buffalo’s Larkin District

Community organizations and a local developer partnered with the University of Buffalo School of Architecture and Planning to help revitalize the Larkin District, an old manufacturing site located one mile from downtown Buffalo.  Architectural students worked with the developer and the city to create a master plan for an urban village that now features new office space, restaurants, apartments, parks, and plazas. New sidewalks, lighting, crosswalks, bicycle lanes, and bus shelters reduce pollution from vehicles by making other transportation choices more appealing.

No word on what award the South side of the Larkin’s nouveau office park may have won. 

But I was more intrigued by this

Overall Excellence
BLVD Transformation Project, Lancaster, California
The redesign of Lancaster Boulevard helped transform downtown Lancaster into a thriving residential and commercial district through investments in new streetscape design, public facilities, affordable homes, and local businesses. Completed after eight months of construction, the project demonstrates how redesigning a corridor guided by a strategic vision can spark new life in a community.  The project has generated almost $300 million in economic output and nearly 2,000 jobs.

Take a look at the “before” image; it literally looks exactly like almost ever major thoroughfare in western New York. Transit Road, Main Street in Williamsville by way of example could be improved dramatically: 

Scumbag Buffalo

The “Scumbag Steve” internet meme

Scumbag Steve is an image macro series featuring a kid with a sideways fitted cap standing in a hallway. The overlaid text generally centers around unethical behavior regarding drugs, partying, and other hedonistic behaviors.

Example: 


See more on Know Your Meme

Yesterday, in light of the horrible stories about awful people doing terrible things, Tom Dolina from Tommunisms was good enough to create a “Scumbag Buffalo” meme blank, replacing “Steve” with City Hall – the background, the hat worn at a rakish tilt are all there. Here are some examples

   

   

   

 

 

 

 

Illuzzi’s Former Site

After gossipy muckraking political payola specialist died a few months ago, his website URL went up for sale. PoliticsNY.net was on the market for $3,000, according to the Massachusetts-based URL resale company I spoke with. Someone snapped it up, and a relaunch is apparently in the works for the very near future. 

No word yet on who bought it, but the site now features this image: 

Anyone notice what’s missing in that picture? 

Follow along on Twitter @politicsny

Heckuva Job, Humanity

1. Just after 9:00 am yesterday, a 24-year old woman was driving her SUV while drunk. She crossed the center line and plowed her SUV into a Pontiac sedan driven by a 31 year-old mother. The impact split the sedan in two, critically injuring the driver and killing her beautiful 7-month old baby, Baylee Marie Dion. 

How many more lives need to be destroyed before selfish, reckless assholes decide that it’s a bad idea to get behind the wheel when they’re drunk? How many more babies need to be homicide victims before some people get it through their thick idiot heads that maybe you don’t get drunk when you have to drive somewhere. The woman who killed Baylee was stopped for DWI in 2009. Our society glamorizes going out and getting hammered. Hooray us. 

2. During the course of a home invasion burglary on Buffalo’s east side, the 3 thugs beat the 96 year-old victim. I mean, you’re already violating his property, why not violate his personal safety, right?  To top it off, civic leaders responding to the horrific beating had to put out a call for area residents to set aside the general rule of “no snitching”.

I’m sure that the elderly resident was just jumping up to physically threaten three young men, right? The beating was totally necessary in furtherance of collecting a few tchotchkes, right? Happy Holidays!

3. A mother in Niagara Falls left her 2 year-old and the child’s father in the car while she ran into the store to get something. As she shopped, a drive-by shooting happened to erupt outside, and a bullet hit the child in the face. People are now discussing whether the 2 year-old was the intended victim. Perhaps someone will come forward in the Falls to provide law enforcement with some information.

Niagara Falls is the place where nothing good ever happens, it seems. Gynophobic newspaper editors, a city that gave up a swath of downtown to a casino that isn’t paying its debts, streets paved with depleted uranium, no jobs, vast poverty, dysfunctional government, waste, fraud, and corruption. ‘Tis the Season!

 

If anyone can photoshop the scumbag Steve hat onto a picture of a Buffalo, I’d love that. Thanks.  Thanks to Tom Dolina for assisting with the “Scumbag Buffalo” meme. 

Meanwhile, an Ontario Judge Kicks Rob Ford Out of Office

Although Ontario is right here in our own backyard, we think about it when it comes to sport or culture or shopping, yet most of us are blissfully ignorant of Ontario politics.  Yesterday, Ontario Superior Court Judge Charles Hackland ruled that Toronto Mayor Rob Ford be removed from office for violation of the Municipal Conflict of Interest Act.  Text of the decision is below. 

Ford wasn’t immediately dismissed; the removal is stayed for 14 days. Ford plans to appeal the ruling

For the uninitiated, Ford is a Tory from Etobicoke, a western suburb that is part of the City of Toronto. His family owns a label company there, and he entered politics as a Toronto city councilman in 2000. He was elected Mayor in 2010 as Torontonians sought to reduce fraud and waste in city government.  He positioned himself as a populist conservative, attacking perks in members’ budgets and calling for removal of long-termers in the council. He became mayor on a platform of “putting people and families first, focusing on the fundamentals, reducing waste, and eliminating unnecessary taxes.”  Think of him as a portlier, blue-collar Chris Collins. 

Like Collins, Ford has a reputation for being arrogant, ignorant, and disrespectful.

Ford’s removal from office had nothing to do with his fiscal conservatism, and everything to do with arrogance and ignorance. In early 2010, then-councilman Ford sent letters on official City of Toronto letterhead identifying him as “Etobicoke North Councillor” soliciting donations for his private “Rob Ford Football Foundation”. He collected just over $3,000 from donors, including several city lobbyists, clients of city lobbyists, and a company that did business with Toronto. His colleagues in the council sanctioned him and ordered him to pay the money back, and a taxpayer lawsuit was filed. 

“In his letter of response to the complaint, Councillor Ford wrote, ‘I do not understand why it would be inappropriate to solicit funds for an arm’s-length charitable cause using my regular employment letterhead,'” Leiper quoted him as saying.
 
Ford had said there was “no basis in policy or law” to stop him from fundraising this way. However, Leiper said she had advised him in December 2009 and in February 2010 that he shouldn’t fundraise in this way.

After the decision yesterday, the plaintiff’s counsel indicated that it didn’t have to be this way

“It is tragic that the elected mayor of a great city should bring himself to this,” Ruby said. “Rob Ford did this to Rob Ford. It could have so easily been avoided. It could have been avoided if Rob Ford had used a bit of common sense and he had played by the rules.” 

As Globe and Mail columnist Marcus Gee explains

What they missed was a dangerous strain of arrogance. This was the mayor who called senior civil servants to his office to demand paving and other repairs outside his family business in Etobicoke. This is the mayor who used publicly paid workers in his office to help coach his high-school football team. This is the mayor who called the head of the Toronto Transit Commission to complain about a late bus that had been pulled out of service to pick up his football players. And this is the mayor who wanted the city’s accountability officers reformed out of existence when some of them questioned his conduct and policies.

Here was a guy who ran as a man of the people but acted as if he were above the limits that apply to ordinary mortals. For Rob Ford, the rules were always for somebody else. Nowhere was that clearer than in the case that led to Monday’s damning court judgment. While he was still a lowly member of city council, a position he held for a full decade, the city’s Integrity Commissioner found that he had used his status as councillor to solicit funds for his private football charity. Among the donors he approached were lobbyists and a company that does business with the city. The commissioner found that seven lobbyists or clients of lobbyists who had donated to the football charity had either lobbied Mr. Ford or registered an intent to lobby him.

The danger is obvious: if a lobbyist does a favour for a councillor – even if it means donating to a good cause – he might expect something in return. Mr. Ford, who rails about corruption at city hall, should have seen that.

Instead, he brushed off the complaint.

In Toronto, they remove their elected officials for perceived conflict of interest over $3,000 to a personal football charity.  Anyone get the sense that, under those rules, practically every politician in western New York would be removed?  It comes as no surprise that Canada is the 10th least corrupt nation in the world, while the United States can manage 18th

Rob Ford Conflict of Interest Decisionhttp://www.scribd.com/embeds/114454163/content?start_page=1&view_mode=scroll&access_key=key-24ndjkmfok0yg0fq15mx

Cyber Monday

Welcome back to a semi-normal week. A few quick takes: 

1. Skyfall is among the best Bond films, ever. As with the rest of the Daniel Craig series, it’s doing a great version of what the Bourne trilogy was – thrilling and action-packed. You know it’s a Bond film because it’s got an evil genius villain. With Craig, however, Bond isn’t just a pseudo-human. They develop the character and give you backstory. Well done. 

2. I think there are pre-Lincoln people and post-Lincoln people. I saw it yesterday, and it reminded me of Spielberg’s other serious world-crisis-as-biopic, Schindler’s List in a lot of ways. Lincoln is unique in that it revolves very specifically around the political flexibility and machinations Lincoln brought to bear on his fight to get the lame duck 38th Congress to free the slaves. Lincoln saw passage of an emancipation amendment to the Constitution as a necessary path to end the Civil War. His team of rivals didn’t always see eye-to-eye with him.  The legal and political issues and ramifications of the Civil War are not glossed over; not dumbed down. Go see it, if for nothing else the Albany lobbyist comic relief. 

3. A fire erupted in a Bangladeshi sweatshop, killing 124

“The factory had three staircases, and all of them were down through the ground floor,” Mahbub said. “So the workers could not come out when the fire engulfed the building.”

“Had there been at least one emergency exit through outside the factory, the casualties would have been much lower,” he said.

This is why we have building codes and regulations. 

Bangladesh’s garment factories make clothes for brands including Wal-Mart, JC Penney, H&M, Marks & Spencer, Carrefour and Tesco.

Hey, did you get any great Black Friday deals on clothes? 

4. Krugman addresses the supposed shortage of skilled workers, on which some businesses blame high unemployment. He raises a different issue: 

So what you really want to ask is why American businesses don’t feel that it’s worth their while to pay enough to attract the workers they say they need.

The US went so far down the phony, make-believe supply side/Reaganomics/trickle-down rabbit hole; we have so thoroughly demonized workers and labor that businesses are now wondering why trained, qualified people aren’t taking jobs at insulting low pay. 

5. Chris Brown is a singer and a horrible person. Never buy anything of his again, ever. 

6. Congratulations to Lake Effect Ice Cream, which announced a move to new digs in Lockport. 

7. The people at City Dining Cards were good enough to send me a copy of their Buffalo-specific “Fridge Phrases” . They make a great Christmas/Hannukah gift for your Buffalo friends and members of the Buffalo diaspora. 

 

Corporate Welfare

Amazing, isn’t it, that corporate welfare through Industrial Development Agencies is so ingrained in local business culture, that it is tantamount to a profile in courage for Clarence’s IDA to consider rejecting providing such welfare to a Mini dealership that wants to relocate from one side of Main Street to the other. 

The IDA culture in western New York is like belonging to a very exclusive country club. The IDAs are made up of politically connected people who decide whether to give handouts, loans, tax breaks, and incentives to people and businesses who are also politically connected. Because the IDA system in western New York is a prime example of disunity and lack of regional vision, IDAs too often poach businesses from one part of WNY to another, or else – as here – simply use public money to subsidize a successful business’ expansion within the same town. 

If Towne Mini is doing well, then let Towne Mini finance its own move. If its expansion is going to make it so much money that sales taxes alone will amount to $650,000 per year, then make sure there’s not a lot of red tape in the way of construction and be done with it. 

But it’s high time that our quasi-governmental corporate welfare entities banded together for the industrial development of western New York as a whole, and stop selectively granting tax breaks to one German-English automotive marque over any other. Ryan has been beating the IDA reform drum for some time, and handing tax breaks to assist a BMW subsidiary to move to bigger digs across the street hardly sounds like a good idea. Let Mini pay for its own expansion, and beware of other towns’ IDAs looking to offer Mini better deals to move to Amherst or elsewhere. 

IDA Report – Assemblyman Sean Ryanhttp://www.scribd.com/embeds/75676457/content?start_page=1&view_mode=scroll&access_key=key-p407dtjcd99ij974twf

As for Clarence’s IDA, the website is woefully out of date, with the last agenda and minutes entries dating back to mid-summer. Perhaps some more transparency and information would be welcome. 

Ignore the Smears, and Help UNICEF

In order to make this point: 

Blonder Paladino Donald Trump accused UNICEF’s CEO of basically ripping off the charity.  

UNICEF USA’s CEO, Caryl M. Stern, responded: 

 

And UNICEF itself wrote,

 

In fact, regardless of what Ms. Stern drives, UNICEF took in $455 million in the fiscal year that ended in June 2011. Just under $447 million of that went to fund its programs. Administrative expenses totaled $12 million, and fundraising expenses came to $29 million.  Ms. Stern’s compensation amounts to $454,000 per year – a tremendous amount of money, but not unheard-of for someone managing an operation such as this, based in New York. It represents 0.10% of UNICEF’s annual expenses.

Trump is apparently referencing something that Snopes has already debunked as false; charges that Stern earns over a million dollars per year and has a Rolls-Royce at her disposal

The United States Fund for UNICEF was founded in 1947 to support the work of the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) by raising funds for its programs and increasing awareness of the challenges facing the world’s children. The oldest of 37 national committees for UNICEF worldwide, we are part of a global effort to save, protect and improve children’s lives. Every moment of every day, UNICEF is on the ground providing lifesaving help for children in need. We provide families with clean water and sanitation, we vaccinate against childhood illness, and we help protect children against malaria. We provide nourishment to fight malnutrition, and we care for children affected by AIDS. We protect children from abuse, and we give them an education. We are here to make sure that all children lead a healthy, humane, and dignified life.

I don’t know why a craven and mean-spirited wealthy person in the public eye would choose to lie about UNICEF in an effort to do it harm, but you can do something about it. Donate to UNICEF and support its programs, such as providing kids with clean water, an education, health care, AIDS medication, food, vaccinations, and other programs.  

 

The Niagara Falls Reporter and Gynophobia

Michael Calleri was, until recently, the film critic for the Niagara Falls Reporter. Last week, Roger Ebert published an eye-opening article that Calleri penned, explaining why his association with the Reporter had recently ended

As recently as five years ago, the Reporter was not just a well-respected paper, but one that outperformed the Niagara Gazette in exposing crime, graft, and scandal in the Niagara Frontier. The paper underwent a deep change in 2008 as it began becoming the story, rather than reporting stories. Its publisher was pushed out and at least one reporter – Dave Staba – left and the entire operation became clouded in accusations and countercharges of journalistic and financial irresponsibility.  That descent was further exacerbated by its founding editor’s alcoholism; he has since moved to California, gone to rehab, and rediscovered the joy of music.

The Reporter‘s transformation from a must-read into a trainwreck was completed when a new publisher acquired it a few years ago. Frank Parlato is no stranger to western New York political writing, nor to scandal. Former Buffalo-area columnist for the Buffalo Beat/Blue Dog and AltPress, Dick Kern, wrote numerous columns accusing Parlato of having run a massive house-flipping operation on Buffalo’s east side. Kern alleged that Parlato would buy dilapidated homes, make minor cosmetic improvements, engage in a bait-and-switch to a worse home, find lenders, and the new homeowners would be stuck with homes in need of serious repairs that they could ill afford.  

Parlato, Illuzzi, Tony Farina, and Glenn Gramigna were like the four nebbishy horsemen of paid advertorial phony journalism in the late 90s and early aughts, and they’re still at it. Illuzzi’s dead, but the other three are still, to this day, writing for each other’s various ventures. More often than not, they’re merely parroting others’ talking points, acting as useful idiots for different politicians’ agendas. Parlato, however, has become the story in Niagara Falls with his constant antagonism with the state, city, and Seneca Nation over his recent ownership and operation of the depressing “One Niagara” flashcube building near the Rainbow Bridge; Hooker/Oxy’s former local offices. He ran into trouble with taxes, and then complained that he was being treated differently than the tax-free Senecas. He wasn’t holding the tax money in escrow in order to make a legal point; he just paid them whenever he felt like it. 

Parlato’s opaque real estate experience aside, he now publishes and “edits” a weekly newspaper. In the short time Parlato has run the Niagara Falls Reporter, it has accelerated its descent into irrelevance; a shadow of its former muckracking self. For his part, Parlato holds archaic, shocking opinions about women in contemporary American society. To call it misogyny isn’t strong enough; it’s gynophobia. Calleri’s article highlights Parlato’s gynophobia, goes into some detail about Reporter founder Mike Hudson’s west coast whereabouts, and the paper’s slow devolution into an outlet for a group of people with money and hateful agendas. 

Back in July, the Reporter made national news by publishing what amounted to hate speech by its “sports columnist” Lenny Palumbo.

I wrote about that episode here, and explained that, “[t]he ways in which the passage above is offensive are many, but to suggest that gays are not manly, or are emasculated; and to contrast the desirability of fighting versus homosexuality are idiotic and ignorant. Chances are, there are plenty of gay guys who could beat the living crap out of the author, so I fail to see the validity of the argument.

Since that paper got a new publisher with a regressive attitude towards women and who expounds on “manliness”, this sort of thing is to be expected.

Expected, indeed. Calleri’s article details that Parlato began censoring his movie reviews; removing some, refusing to post new ones. Parlato explained why in a shocking email to Calleri (all [sic]). 

Michael; I know you are committed to writing your reviews, and put a lot of effort into them. it is important for you to have the right publisher. i may not be it. i have a deep moral objection to publishing reviews of films that offend me. snow white and the huntsman is such a film. when my boys were young i would never have allowed them to go to such a film for i believe it would injure their developing manhood. if i would not let my own sons see it, why would i want to publish anything about it?

snow white and the huntsman is trash. moral garbage. a lot of fuzzy feminist thinking and pandering to creepy hollywood mores produced by metrosexual imbeciles. 

I don’t want to publish reviews of films where women are alpha and men are beta.

where women are heroes and villains and men are just lesser versions or shadows of females. 

i believe in manliness. 

not even on the web would i want to attach my name to snow white and the huntsman except to deconstruct its moral rot and its appeal to unmanly perfidious creeps. 

i’m not sure what headhunter has to offer either but of what I read about it it sounds kind of creepy and morally repugnant. 

with all the publications in the world who glorify what i find offensive, it should not be hard for you to publish your reviews with any number of these. 

they seem to like critiques from an artistic standpoint without a word about the moral turpitude seeping into the consciousness of young people who go to watch such things as snow white and get indoctrinated to the hollywood agenda of glorifying degenerate power women and promoting as natural the weakling, hyena -like men, cum eunuchs. 

the male as lesser in courage strength and power than the female. 

it may be ok for some but it is not my kind of manliness. 

If you care to write reviews where men act like good strong men and have a heroic inspiring influence on young people to build up their character (if there are such movies being made) i will be glad to publish these. 

i am not interested in supporting the reversing of traditional gender roles. 

i don’t want to associate the Niagara Falls Reporter with the trash of Hollywood and their ilk. 

it is my opinion that hollywood has robbed america of its manliness and made us a nation of eunuchs who lacking all manliness welcome in the coming police state. 

now i realize that you have a relationship with the studios etc. and i would have been glad to have discussed this in person with you to help you segue into another relationship with a publication but inasmuch as we spent 50 minutes on the phone from paris i did not want to take up more of your time. 

In short i don’t care to publish reviews of films that offend me. 

if you care to condemn the filmmakers as the pandering weasels that they are…. true hyenas.

i would be interested in that….

Frank

Weird. Weirder still is that it’s an email that a newspaper publisher in western New York wrote to his film critic. But all the talk of eunuchs, weasels, hyena-men – “manliness“. That’s the central theme. Do you spend a whole lot of time worrying about your “manliness” or anyone else’s “manliness”? I don’t much consider whether society is friendly or antagonistic to “manliness”, and I’m not at all threatened by females or feminism. 

Not so, Parlato. In fact, demanding that females be subservient to man is his very ethos. 

A few years ago, I first became aware of a Parlato-run site called “Manmaking.com“. It went away for a time, but it’s back online now, with a bizarre image:

Click to enlarge

I have no idea what that’s supposed to mean. 

But if you go into Archive.org’s waybackmachine, you can find what Parlato’s “Manmaking” site is really about. Parlato is a follower of a turn-of-the-last-century guru named Swami Vivekananda, who apparently wrote much about “manliness“, and who practiced a form of celibacy known as “brahmacharya“. This practice doesn’t just demand abstinence from sexual contact or activity; it more specifically prohibits any voluntary release of semen. Through mental discipline, the adherent is supposed to reach a state whereby he loses all sexual desire, and keeping his semen inside him is supposed to make him more spiritual or holy or some such nonsense. 

Like his hero Vivekananda, Parlato has a “condescending” “contempt” for contemporary women. Whereas the Swami was upset at Hindu women’s lack of independence, Parlato has more specifically adopted the “ideal of the de-eroticized woman as a mother figure and [condemns] the sexual female as an ogre and an exteriorizing and fettering element – an impediment to the realization of the divine.” 

 On the front page of the former Manmaking.com is the following introductory passage (all [sic]): 

Are you unmanly, cowardly, weak? This site may help you to be strong, to preserve the manly fire within, to look upward, to hold your breath, and gain strength, to go out into the world with absolute courage, to shut off that filthy television set which promotes effiminate behavior, to stop looking inordinately at the body of woman with greedy, weak and sickening lustful eyes and be a man, a giver of strength to one and all. Be chaste and come and rule nature, inner and outer.

Are you depressed, lacking in vigor, failing to succeed? Then stop your filthy habits at once. Stop groveling at the feet of woman. Banish this weakness of the knees. A brave man never bends the knees. Be celibate. Be chaste, and you’ll never be weak.

Parlato has a big problem with popular culture and the way in which it promotes “coward-dog” behavior over the “manly”. Here, Parlato compared song lyrics for their relative manliness. Some of the worst songs include “Honky Tonk Woman” by the Rolling Stones, James Brown’s “Sex Machine”, and especially the Kinks’ “Lola”. Parlato reprints some of the lyrics and then intersperses them with his own commentary. For instance, 

In 1996, he did a similar “analysis” of Green Day lyrics in the pages of the Buffalo News. By contrast, decent lyrics include “Jingle Jangle Jingle” (the protagonist likes being single), “I Love You” by Cole Porter, “Volare” by Domenico Modugno, and a few songs by the Beatles and Elton John.  The manliest man lyrics, however, include “Raindrops Keep Fallin’ on my Head”, and that’s it. B.J. Thomas’ 1970 hit is the manliest song in existence because the protagonist won’t cry or something

What is a man? The website merely contains two Schopenhauer quotes; one about women, one about fatherhood. On the issue of brahmacharya, Parlato explains why the voluntary release of seminal fluid is bad

Continence is the essence of spiritual life. ‘Of all austerities, the practice of continence is supreme. He who practices it is verily a god, not a man.’ The illumined knowledge of Brahman comes naturally to a person who practices continence for thirty-two years. He who wastes this energy falls from the spiritual path and becomes dissipated.

A walk through the anachronistic depravity of Parlato’s manmaking site reveals why he rejected Calleri’s review of “Snow White and the Huntsman”. Women are to be subservient and controlled by men. Parlato rejects any notion of a strong female who isn’t controlled and “beta” to her “alpha” male. Permitting women to exercise their rights, their brains, and their individuality isn’t “courageous” or “manly”. The “hyena” reference in Parlato’s email to Calleri? Manmaking.com explains what that means. Following this link, Parlato tried to use animals at the Buffalo Zoo to construct a metaphor for his thinking. Parlato was impressed by the lions’ patriarchy:

So little time has passed when men were pridefully compared to lions. But what the eviscerators failed to note as they came mincingly to our town, and to our nation and told how we are diminished, our manly strength of little purpose, our values: to be less of courage, than lust, the metro-sexual’s effeminate ideal: to trade dignity and freedom for safety and comfort – as they tried to tame the wild, there is a place beyond where it cannot be so. Where it is never so: There is a home for heroes.

In answer to the lioness’s last stupendous roar, he but looked it seemed to the tip of his nose.  This was after all a lion. Then he dropped his voice a full octave lower than her last and roared a lion’s roar that shook the night. Easily too it overwhelmed all the other roars before it and broke the stillness as if it was a bombshell exploding. The sound rustled through the trees, out into to the tame, and urban landscape — orderly, effete, dissipated — and called, “remember me? Remember?

At the Buffalo zoo at dusk, a lion roared lower and loudest, beyond what any lioness could have equaled. 
And if it were the silent night, in places where lions run free, it would have echoed across the windswept veldt, down the rushing river, to be carried to the sea where all things merge. It would have been known to the wild:  a lion is on the move tonight. 

Nothing complete until the king had spoken, the lioness seemed satisfied with his final roar. She was now silence, herself. There was no more roaring – as if he had given the final satisfactory answer.

But the Hyenas – they are ruled by the females:  

Earlier that day, I had seen hyenas in a pen where females rule. With final yelp they nip their weaker mates and bloody them. In the kingdom of the lion, there is no yelping. Nor does he tremble at noises. 

In the silence, below the clouds, obscured by darkness, obscuring the silver, lonely stars, and obscured in turn by leaves of trees, whether maple or the banyan, spreading branches blended into night, satisfied, I turned to go. 

Each is great unto himself, no doubt, yet to me, it is the lion. Never hyenas. Although gathering in packs around us, remember, it takes but one lion to stave them all off. 

I shall meditate on the lion’s heart tonight.

Pro forma: Parlato is free, of course, to believe whatever he wants. Absent physical or mental abuse, he is free to think whatever he wants of women and feminism, however archaic or offensive. Indeed, he is free to run his newspaper however he wants and to print whatever he wants in there. Certainly the Constitution prohibits the government from in any way interfering with what he prints, but the community in western New York should know who’s printing what “news” in the Niagara Falls ReporterHis conceit is so strong, he runs a website called “Journalism101”, consisting mostly of paid full-page advertisements he took out in the Reporter to advance his agendas before he bought the paper outright.

Parlato has completely taken over the Reporter, and has even begun printing certain Vivekananda writings each week. His latest issue prints some hateful non-sequitur about Lady Gaga, complete with made-up “quotes” from the singer, and the author’s fixation on semen. It should hardly come as a surprise that Parlato’s cover story last week included interviews with three crack-addicted prostitutes – women who are mentally and physically dependent on substances; on men. Women who are at the lowest societal rung where, as Parlato believes, they belong.

Within Ebert’s article’s comments section, Parlato (apparently) assails Calleri

I don’t know what any of this has to do with running a newspaper or journalism. It seems to me to be proselytization, using the Reporter‘s former good name and reputation as cover. Calleri’s revelations about Parlato and the Reporter may come as a shock to some. Unfortunately, Parlato’s gynophobia is nothing new, and deeply ingrained in his belief system. Now that he owns a newspaper, look forward to seeing him use it to proselytize against women, feminism, and “cowardly” “dog” men. He’s already begun.

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