Sunday, December 09, 2007

The Second Shot Heard Round The World

Kevin Rennie’s two reports on state Sen. Thomas Gaffey's have gone unanswered, which is not to say there have not been repercussions.

“Joey from Glastonbury” -- very likely a pseudonym, since “Joey” is commenting on the Harford Courant’s site, which allows pseudonyms – writes:

“I think this article proves last weeks (sic) piece was nothing but garbage. Last week Rennie put the idea out there that Gaffey supported the CSU 2020 because of a romantic relationship. Now Rennie writes that Carter's friendship with Gaffey goes back much further. There are no violations. Three years ago Carter sold tickets at face to Gaffey (legal on all fronts) and Carter made a political contribution (legal on all fronts). Rennie doesn't report on what other political contributions Carter might have made nor if he ever sold tickets to others in past years. Considering up until a two years ago, UConn gave out dozen of tickets to each game this column is just an assignation (sic) attempt on Carter's character. Carter is a person of great character and the fact that a person with skeletons his closet should write this garbage is a real shame. Maybe Rennie (sic) should write an authoriative (sic) article about legislators' relationship with male and female interns.”

Unless I am mistaken, that last remark may be a reference to Rennie’s sexual orientation. This kind of intemperate remark did not surface when Rennie was publishing columns critical of Republicans; so one can only suppose that the commentator is a paid functionary of the Democrat Party and/or a small minded anti-gay bigot. Such supposals are made necessary by the commentator’s anonymity. Bloggers and commentators on news sites are permitted to spew their venom under cover of pseudonyms, which imparts to them a kind of courage they lack when addressing their ministers or mothers face to face.

Actually, Rennie’s second column on Gaffey is an elaboration of his first column, which has resulted in much spilled ink.

In the second column, Rennie addresses concerns raised by one of the eminences of the Democrat Party, President Pro Tem of the state senate the Honorable Don Williams.

Williams dismissed Rennie’s first shot: that hanky-panky between Gaffey and his “amorata” (Rennie’s expression), Associate Vice Chancellor Jill Ferraiolo, a state worker and a lobbyist for the Connecticut’s four state colleges, may have distorted the role Gaffey played in procuring one billion dollars for Ms. Ferraiolo's employer. Not for nothing did the ancient Greeks portray the confusion Eros sows in men’s minds by the wild goatskin clad Pan, god of the grape. Wine makes you woozy; so do women, recently divorced, who compare their business associates to Gods. Heady stuff that.

Nothing to it, Williams said, provoking the following commentary from Rennie:

“State Senate President Pro Tem Donald Williams, displaying his taste for censorship, mustered a studied disdain for the idea that Gaffey ought to have disclosed his affair while shaping and promoting the CSUS legislation. Pay no attention to Gaffey's gambit last spring, as a member of the legislature's Finance Committee, to replace a carefully controlled plan for CSUS with one that spent a lot more and included less oversight…

“Gaffey says he's an old-fashioned fella; he paid for meals with his inamorata, CSUS link Jill Ferraiolo, he said early last week.

“By Friday, however, Gaffey's recollection was getting sharper. He recalled, in response to written questions, two previously undisclosed luncheons with Ferraiolo and others that he paid for with money from his Government Action Fund Political Action Committee. Those are political contributions that Gaffey has used for years to finance travel, dinners and trips.

“He is indeed an old-fashioned guy. Sen. Williams should be disappointed to learn that Gaffey and Ferraiolo were mixing their private lives with political contributions…

“GAFPAC, like every Connecticut political committee, must file quarterly finance reports. The law requires an itemized accounting of each contribution and expenditure. Gaffey has often neglected to comply with that requirement. It's hard to know exactly where, when and on what thousands of dollars have been spent. GAFPAC has made many payments to the senator's personal credit card for purchases that are not clearly disclosed.

“On Friday, Gaffey said he'd file an amendment to one mysterious payment this year of $1,281 to his personal credit card. There are plenty of other blank spaces in the reports he's filed since the millennium that the state Elections Enforcement Commission may want to review.”


This is pretty solid commentary. If I was gay – and let me be up front about it; I am not – I would have been proud to write those lines. This is legitimate commentary. What’s gay got to do with it?
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