Friday afternoon I spoke to the He-Man-Women-Haters Club, better known as M.A.L.E.S. (Male Active Lively Energetic Seniors). Think Grumpy Old Men with civics savvy.
These guys love Bridgeport and national politics. And several of them are blog readers. (The rest would read but for computer familiarity.) And they pay close attention to what posters write. “Hey,” said one member, “that Con Filardi is interesting.”
You think blog posters are blunt? Check out these guys, most of them in their seventies and eighties.
“What the hell are those guys doing in Washington larding up this bailout bill!”
“Why do those Bridgeport cops have to get so much overtime? I got shot at for $40 a month.” Think he was in the war?
Among the 25 guys in the Baldwin Center in Stratford, we had a mix of Republicans and Democrats. But these guys are classic, throwback fiscal conservatives. I asked them for a show of hands on Sarah Palin. How did she do against Joe Biden? Consensus: she did well. “Okay,” I asked, “will you vote for McCain because of her?”
“Who cares about the vice president. We vote for president!”
They wanted to know about Bridgeport, Bill Finch, Steelpointe, the budget, police overtime; with opinions a plenty.
“Joe Ganim got too much time. These guys in Washington do worse.”
M.A.L.E.S. was formed in 1976 to engage in “activities and programs attuned to the male psyche.” Two gents in the crowd Bob Dortenzio, former officer for the Bridgeport GOP and Pat Pallotto, former Sunday Post editor, I’ve known since my teens as a Post reporter.
Membership in the club is restricted to 55 or older so I have a few years yet, but if you want to join contact Dortenzio at 203-375-7543. Annual dues are $5. They meet the first and third Friday of the month. Johnny Fabs is the next scheduled speaker.
They’re also extremely active in volunteer and charitable work. Member Joe Minto is organizing a salute to veterans, in conjunction with the Greater Bridgeport Patriotic Association, November 7 at 6 p.m. at Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church on Park Avenue. Tix for the buffet dinner are $25. Contact Joe at 203-372-2632.
So what do you make of this bailout bill? Do ya think there’s enough slop in there for a pig party? Is it a necessary evil? What happened to the John McCain of 2000 that declared war against the iron triangle of money, lobbyists and legislation? He voted for it, as did Barack. It appears that Barack’s support is starting to harden. McCain’s gonna need a game changer. We may see an ultra-aggressive Republican at Tuesday night’s debate.