Niagara Falls Reporter
Home | Archive / Search
OCT 15 - OCT 22, 2015

Only in NT: Change is Needed With NT's 8 Men in a Room

By Sweeney Payne

OCT 15, 2015

British philosopher and economist John Stuart Mill had it right.

British philosopher and economist John Stuart Mill once said, “If all mankind minus one, were of one opinion, and only one person were of the contrary opinion, mankind would be no more justified in silencing that one person, than he, if he had the power, would be justified in silencing mankind.”

The First Amendment gives Americans (including North Tonawandans) five rights: free speech, freedom of religion, free press, freedom to assemble and the right to petition government for the redress of grievances.

The last one is essential to maintaining a democracy. If you have ever phoned, emailed, or written a letter to an NT, Niagara County, New York State or Federal official, gone to a City Council, School Board or County Legislature meeting, you were exercising your right to petition government for the redress of grievances.

Freedom of the press is needed for the search and attainment of truth, scientific progress, cultural development, the increase of virtue among the people, the holding of governmental officials to republican values, the strengthening of community, and a check upon self-aggrandizing politicians.
Republican values does not refer to the GOP. A “republic” is a state in which supreme power is held by the people and their elected representatives, and which there is an elected or nominated president rather than a monarch. 

The free speech and freedom of the press guarantees we have as Americans apply equally to federal and state governments, which include local governments as well as all branches of each government. The free speech guarantee extends to all viewpoints, good or evil.

Being disenfranchised is no fun. The rules work against you, your rights are constantly violated, and you have little power to change your life for the better. The Old French word enfranchir means “to make free,” and when you add the negative prefix dis-, disenfranchised means “made unfree.” A disenfranchised population doesn’t rest easy, and often they organize and fight back against their condition to demand their basic rights and freedom.

Because of the current political machine in Niagara County, many NT residents are disenfranchised without even realizing it. Those who realize it have stopped voting entirely, realizing it is a waste of time until the system is fixed.

We need ward aldermen, aldermen-at-large and a Mayor who KNOW the City and its residents and appreciate it for what it has always been. We need people filling those offices to take care of the things the residents have been begging to be done for the last decade BEFORE they waste more money on things we don’t need or want and more costly studies by people who don't live here.

News coverage of three men in a room at the State level has been frequent over the years. In NT, we have eight people in a room—a Mayor, a City Clerk-Treasurer, a City Attorney, and five Aldermen.

Re-electing the same politicians will only produce the same discouraging results.

We don’t want politicians earning their living at the taxpayers’ trough and moving back and forth from City of NT, NT School District, Niagara County, and New York State positions. Nor do we want to continue seeing the same last names with different first names occupying half or more of all the paying jobs and political appointments and elected positions anymore.

When we have someone retire, say, like long-time former Treasurer Leslie Stolzenfels, with questions about her performance, why would we, or other taxpayers in the County, want her to have been fed into a Deputy County Treasurer role? And then when that stint was over, there she was back at the public trough working part-time in City Hall!

Politicians earn their political payoffs by convincing citizens of their importance—or by downright intimidation. More and more residents are sharing with each other about the intimidating tactics of those in office in NT, especially Council president Rizzo and appointed alderman at large Pecoraro. They are fast becoming known as the twin bullies of City Hall.

Pecoraro isn’t a colonel in the Air Force anymore. The residents of North Tonawanda aren’t supposed to be reporting to him. He has it backwards and doesn’t appear about to report to us!

NT is the butt of jokes beyond the city. In a Buffalo News “OFF Main Street” article about the “offbeat side of the news” on January 12, 2013, our Common Council meetings were the lead story in the column: “North Tonawanda’s mostly Republican Common Council is efficient. At Tuesday evening meetings, the congenial aldermen agree with each other, swiftly vote on matters like adjusting sewer improvement budgets, and sometimes finish in half the time it takes meeting regular Ann Finkle to drive to City Hall.”

Do you want to continue these arrogant egocentric politicians in office supposedly representing you?





Virtuoso Wants Better Security
To Improve Security at the Niagara County Board of Elections
Bilson Excoriates Grozio for Trashy Tactics
Virtuoso Jumps the Shark
Anderson Won't Let Cancer Stop November Bid for Reelection
Open Mic at the Nifty Fifty Bar Weekly every Thursday evening
Free Pizza and Football at Nifty Fifty on Sunday As Buffalo Avenue Sports Bar Rolls Out Red Carpet
Why Is Paul Dyster Wasting $1.8M to Duplicate County Services? The John Accardo Q&A
Choolokian Marches on With Write in Mayoral Campaign
72nd Street Frozen in Bureaucracy as Repair Work Gets Late Start
Mayor, Council and Tourism Board Prepare Trip Down Patronage Job Path
A Response to the Uninformed About Islam
Will the Voters Write Choolokian in or Simply Write Him Off?
Only in NT: Change is Needed With NT's 8 Men in a Room
Lewiston's Hide-n-Seek Budget Games
News of the Weird
City Hall Jokes
Your Weekly Horoscope

Contact Info

©2014 The Niagara Falls Reporter Inc.
POB 3083, Niagara Falls, N.Y. 14304
Phone: (716) 284-5595

Publisher and Editor in Chief: Frank Parlato
Managing Editor: Dr. Chitra Selvaraj
Senior Editor: Tony Farina