A Chat With Chairman Mario

Mario Testa’s in the Pol Pod. The Democratic Town Chairman is a little man with a lot of fight. He reclaimed party leadership in March after party regulars revolted against the John Stafstrom/Cynthia King wing of the party supported by Mayor Bill Finch. Testa had served as party leader during the Joe Ganim years before resigning in 2003.

His comeback was fueled by dissatisfaction with some of Finch’s early missteps and Stafstrom’s inability to hold the party together.

Key to Testa’s comeback was Dottie Guman accepting vice chairmanship of the party. Guman, the Mother Goose of the party, was responsible for guiding Finch’s political career. Their relationship fell apart when Guman criticized Finch for trying to double dip his mayoral position and state senate seat, his insistence to prioritize politicking over governing and his crude outburst against her after he learned she was supporting Testa over Stafstrom who had left an unintentional F bomb on her answering unit. Understand that the toughest thing that will come out of Guman’s mouth is telling someone they’re full of prunes.

Finch has been reaching out to Guman in recent weeks in an effort to repair the relationship. The mayor still has some work to do there, even though he’s telling everyone he’s patched things up with Guman.

Right now Testa and Finch are not buddies. Testa’s alliance with the Bridgeport City Council is strong and he’ll not be shy about playing power politics with legislative issues if his relationship with Finch doesn’t improve. Testa and Stafstrom, a bright attorney and savvy political operative, have never been particularly close, and that’s something to watch over the next week or so as selection of city bond counsel is announced. Stafstrom is an attorney with the respected law firm Pullman & Comley, which has provided opinions concerning city financial transactions and bond issues for many years. In years past selection of bond counsel has not gone to the City Council for approval because the city attorney’s office has cited state statute that allows broad authority to hire legal counsel. Finch had created a new selection process as cover that he wasn’t favoring Stafstrom’s firm. There’s movement in the City Council to assert contract control over bond counsel selection, as Testa suggests in our interview.

Testa talks about being back in power, his relationship with Finch and the City Council. On another note, Finch has taken heat for waiting eight months to hire a director of economic development. The mayor’s office sent out a media advisory that he will introduce his new hire Monday afternoon. {running time: 10:23}



  1. Lennie – That was very nice.

    If Mother Goose tells you that you are full of prunes.
    She’s not shittin’.

    Connpost.com reporting that 333 State Street is already scaling back on development plan after much Hullabaloo!
    It’s a typical master bait and switch deal.

    State announces not enough money to properly staff new 56 million dollar waterfront juvey joint.

    Was Bill “Fake and Switch” anywhere to be found today at Senator John Edwards appearance on living wage at Steal Point?

  2. Finch was at the Edwards event. It was classic Moonbeam fluff and bluff. Says all the right things publicly about jobs and affordable housing then privately tells the union to stick it up their ass, particularly the union that supported Caruso.

  3. Finch didn’t do a belly flop and was there for John Edwards. Finch described Steal Point as an “urban wasteland that will soon be filled with union jobs.” Well at least he got it 1/2 right.

  4. oh for chrissake – what will you people come up with to beat up on Finch for next? next thing you know, you’ll be criticizing the color of his tie. To hear you tell it nobody can do anything to please you. If you have all the answers, why don’t one of you run for mayor and see if you can do better. This is really getting old.

  5. Golf pro – it’s always the same old stuff, just bashing this mayor for anything and everything. It’s just predictable and boring to read negative comments all the time from the same haters over and over. Unlike you guys, I want Finch to succeed. You can add me to the Finch fan club, no matter what – it’s better than drinking the lemonade that Caruso serves up. You folks need to lighten up.

  6. I attended the Edwards event this afternoon. The highlight for me was when ACORN asked all the local elected officials present to sign a pledge to work for an ordinance requiring developers to provide affordable housing and living wage jobs. All the elected officials present dutifully stepped up and signed the pledge except one – of course that one was Bill Finch. This occured right after hizzoner gave a rousing speech on the need for affordable housing and good jobs in Bpt. Finch’s failure to sign did not go unnoticed – particularly by the union people and John Edwards.

  7. If truth be known it really wasn’t that rousing.

    …and before the Fan Club starts with their “these type of agreements keep developers out” rants, please remember that last Nov. the City Council, at the behest of the Finch/Stafstrom wing of the party, pretty much caved in to all the developer’s anti-union, anti-low and moderate income people demands and to date the city has not received a nickle nor has the first spadefull of dirt been turned and now we are hearing rumblings that they are going to bail and the whole Steel Point project will be back to square one.

    Thanks Bill. You’re a real friend of the working people.

  8. you are welcome Lennie – I expect to get bashed for my opinions, but I don’t really care. somebody has to take a stand for the mayor. Notice how quick some of these people take a stand when their hero Caruso gets bashed, well, I’m in the opposite corner and its not the most popular place to be on this blog.

  9. again, it’s just my opinion, but I think the developers bailed out due to the overall bad state of the economy. with so many forclosures (really sad) why do they want to bother with building more housing. I’m just as disappointed as everyone else, especially with the Magic Johnson deal.

  10. Mario was quite loquacious. Maybe he should be called Chariman Mario Tse Tongue.

    Golf Pro is really on game tonight. No bogeys and plenty of birdies.
    John from Black Rock-Take some “Sominex Tonight and Sleep!”
    Hennessy said: ‘it was a real lug fest!’
    Buddy Cianci, no longer in hot sauce, to be named new Economic Development Director.
    City Kitty has nine lives and has landed on all fore’s.
    Tennis anyone?

  11. What would they fight about? They vote the same way on everything and live in different districts.

    I’m just trying to imagine what an epic battle between the two would even consist of.

  12. The only thing that scares me more than Mayor Moonbeam picking the city’s bond counsel is the prospect of the loony tunes on the City Council (“advised” by Mario?) making that choice.

  13. Great Pol Pod interview with Chairman Mario Testa, Lennie!

    Here’s the latest update from curbside in the 130th…I tried to get up to Hartford today by the 5pm deadline with our Primary Application and Filing, but I could not quite coordinate getting our paperwork lined up with the $5,000.00 and the minimum 150 Bridgeport contributors because I was still driving around town at noontime right after getting out of morning court hearings to pick up B’port contributor #149 and #150’s form and $5.00…the paperwork requirement is pretty extensive and without a dedicated campaign manager to coordinate all this work, it’s a tough crunch!!!

    Anyway, will try to get the paperwork done right by this weekend and complete the filing by the last filing date next Thursday for the grant money.

    Our heartfelt thanks to all the OIB contributors and generous supporters who answered the call and appeal of a first-time challenger.

    Meanwhile, Lovey (aka Dr. Timi Ryan) and I made the first District 130 eatery visit tonight at the old Peruvian Corner, one block away from our front steps, recently renamed the Peruvian and Mexican Restaurant, at the corner of Knowlton St. and Congress Street. She had the Ceviche Mixto and Chupe de Camarones (shrimp soup) while I had the Churrasco (steak with rice and a salad) with an Inca Cola. Lovey rated the food A+. I agree. Nice neighborhood eatery. Please come out and enjoy. Hugo Montesinos is the owner and manager. Great guy!

    Sorry to have missed concert with Wayne Hiller at McLevy Green and the Bluefish game tonight, but I had to do an emergency client visit in Waterbury and another client home visit in the valley after the afternoon court hearings.

  14. City Kitty

    You are delusional. Try to name just three initiatives fully conceived, developed and implemented by that fraud and your idol Bill Finch.

    The reason this city is in the mess it is in and will continue to slide into the abyss of despair is directly attributable to ignorant democrat loyalist who vote for the donkey no matter how bad the candidate is. DEMOCRATS FOREVER. Thbbbbbt.

    We already know that if John Edwards lived in Bridgeport, he wouldn’t vote for Finch. I’ll bet Obama wouldn’t either.

  15. Gosh..

    Isn’t Salcedo peachy neat???

    Tone down the campy bullshit , counselor, and focus on what you intend to do to make change in office.


  16. Oh My God!!!

    Obama’s people contacted Dodd to discuss the Vice Presidency.

    Obama/Dodd = McCain (thbbbt) as our new president.

    Why on earth would Obama consider Dodd?

    Didn’t Dodd come in dead last in every state primary including Connecticut?

    When did Chris Caruso’s campaign manager start advising Obama?

  17. Despite a few detractors, The Mayor Finch Fan Cub continues to expand. It’s populated by those who prefer to see the glass half full instead of half empty. Chronic complainers dominate this blog while others think we’re just around the corner from the light of day.

    City Kitty: you’re not alone.

  18. John from BR: I for one applaud Bill Finch for not signing Acorn’s attempt to have an ordinance passed requiring more affordable housing and a living wage.
    First Acorn is a radical scumbag group of blackmailers.
    Second John show me a construction project past or present where a living wage was not paid.
    Which union was present was it the service workers union who seem to think they should run the city I may have the name wrong but it’s the same union that aligned itself with Acorn when steel point was being voted on.
    If memory serves there were a number of affordable housing units tied to the steel point project.
    John why isn’t Acorn in Shelton, Fairfield and other towns when they start a large construction projects that state they have affordable housing attached.
    Bill Finch thanks for not bowing to this band of blackmailers who mostly come from out of town.

  19. Local Eyes…

    Can you name three initiatives fully conceived, developed and implemented by that fraud and your idol Bill Finch?

    I, too, am a glass half full guy. My optimism is bolstered by the fact that democrats and republicans and independent are banding together in great numbers to rid this city of the moron mayor and his machine.

    Remember, nearly half of the people who voted in the primary voted for the other guy. Can you imagine the results if a truly qualified and competent candidate ran against Finch?

    Good luck with your politics, no matter how ill conceived.

  20. yahooy:

    There hasn’t been enough time for anyone to complete three initiatives and this game ain’t over yet (wink and a grin).

    While your optimism is to be admired, your half full glass has holes in it and needs a constant supply of water to maintain its contents.

  21. Speaking of nuts, I’m going to gather mine.

    Did anyone read the Charlie Walsh column on page two in today’s Post? Charlie has admitted to sneaking in some gin ‘n’ tonics to the Ballpark at Harbor Yard. I’ve always liked Walsh. He’s got a lot of balls. I wonder if Charlie hid the lime in his coconuts?

  22. I am an unapologetic liberal Democrat. I believe that govenment has a role in ensuring decent housing and good jobs for everyone. I also believe that there has been an economic race to the bottom that is destroying the middle class and killing the poor. This is class warfare perpetrated by the elite against the rest of us.

    Btw – I am also an ACORN member.

    Have a nice weekend all. I’ll be on a short vacation.

  23. I agree with Yahooy. Actually, I think Yahooy, despite his combative style, is insightful and illustrates the many maladies that befall our fair city.

    Local Eyes…Finch has been in office for nearly eight months and has accomplished nothing, has started nothing, and has maintained a business as usual profile despite campaigning on promises of efficient municipal management.

    I didn’t vote for him and I never will nor will I vote for anyone associated with him and the entire Mario Testa team.

    If the voters of Bridgeport are perspicacious Finch would be asked to step down.

    He is ineffective and is not only costing us money in lost opportunity, but far more serious, he is costing us time that we will never recover.

    I, too, would like anyone to provide three initiative Finch thought up all by himself, developed and implemented. Better yet…can anyone name just one that he has actually started?

  24. John thinking that it’s everyone’s right to live off the government is more like socialist thinking. People do have to get off their collective asses and try to better themselves. Depending on the government for everything brings a sense of entitlement and we are close to that now. John you did not answer the question: Name 1 Bridgeport project where a living wage was not paid. It is easy to make claims but not easy to prove them when challenged. Acorn should practice what they preach and pay their staff more than minimum wage.
    BTW we have had a liberal democratic controlled congress since 2006 and what has that got us. Bupkus that’s what.
    Everyone should have decent housing but trying to put that housing alongside expensive condo units is developmental suicide. Have a nice trip.

  25. Mayor Finch is dealing with the municipal mess he inherited. Bridgeport has been declining since the Federal government’s fiscal policies started forcing industry away – those that couldn’t move, died. In short, deficit spending works only when there is no foreign competition – we outpriced ourselves from our own markets, and in the process, jumpstarted globalization.

    Voters are rightly pissed-off but their anger is misdirected. Let’s hope Mayor Finch is the antidote for the bad macro-economic trends that preceded him — he’s certainly not the cause.

  26. “…bad macro-economic trends that preceded him…”

    The only way to address the effects of “bad macro-economic trends” is to get off one’s ass and do something about it.

    I ask again…just tell me one thing Finch has initiated to alleviate the desperate conditions he ‘inherited’.

  27. Fine if Finch inherited the “mess”, but a person with a brain would make changes, and not keep the same people involved with creating the mess. He is CLUELESS. City Kitty please don’t comment until after work, because you are wasting my hard earned tax dollars that pay you to work.

  28. There is NOTHING stopping ANYBODY on this blog from starting and completing their own initiatitives.
    TRUE SUCCESS comes from the inside. Those that can, do; those that can’t; review.

    Take note, yahooy and aboost.

  29. YOU take note, sycophant!!! Doorholders like you are satisfied with the status quo. All you’re interested in is protecting your job, whatever that may be. Your boss is a bum. A dumb bum at that. Nothing, absolutely nothing has changed since that weird jerk took office. Nothing will change because the putz hasn’t got a clue. Wake up, you loyalist turkey. Fewer and fewer of you dyed-in-the-wool types are hanging on. As far as I am concerned you and City Kitty are cliches. Sooner or later your ilk will be but a bad memory. Notice your number of supporters, even on this blog, are dwindling?

  30. Three initiatives started, developed and implemented by Finch? Anyone??? Lots of bullshit retorts but nary an answer to the question.

    Has DiNardo been called to account for the dealer plate caper? He has in Fairfield. Why not Bridgeport?

  31. Local Eyes

    Nice tee shirts. I just ordered you a 6X. Hope it’ll fit over your fat head.

    I ask you to tell me what the man has accomplished, you try to sell me a tee shirt.

  32. Wondering,
    Let’s start with Eric Anderson. He hired untrained workers to perform demolition work at City Trust building, refused to pay OT and then laid them off when they complained.
    City Trust is getting financial assistance from city taxpayers for that project and would have been covered under a living wage ordinance.

  33. I have to give it to you guys who are bashing Finch. The reason I was driving on Fairfield Ave from Brewster St to Downtown and damn the roads are horrible there are holes all over. I’m suprised someone has not sued Bpt yet because that road can damage someones car and tires. And now that I look at that I was like these roads are worst than 3rd world countries. I always supported Finch but I have to be honest with myself…what the hell has Finch done since he was in office look at our roads.

  34. donj

    Please inform the blogging public as to where you buy your “smart” pills.

    Consider yourself insulated from “Philistine of the Week” through October 15th.

  35. Gossip of The Rialto!

    Shays gives Rick Porto the Brush Off!!

    Porto who speaks softly but carries a Big Paint Stick has filed a mechanics lien against Shays for painting work done at Chez Shays La Femme’s Maison in Black Rock.

    Shays, who is assive aggressive, always tries to paint Bridgeport with a broad brush.
    Porto will paint him a picture and stick it where the sun don’t shine.

    Shays It Ain’t So Chris!!

  36. City Kitty has it right with regard to ACORN. They are a bunch of folks on the dole and the dole just AIN’T GOOD ENOUGH FOR THEM. I seriously doubt that any one of them has ever paid a tax bill. If this city is going to move ahead it had better stop focussing on “affordable housing” and more on an industrial base.
    FedupwithCityHall and Yahooy have it right too. This mayor is “clueless” and hasn’t accomplished anything in seven months and won’t accomplish anything in four years. I hope we’re wrong and as I’ve said before I will be the first to apologize and will do it with a megaphone on the steps of City Hall Annex at noon on any day of your choosing.
    And Local Eyes it wasn’t the Federal Government that caused the downfall of Bridgeport but the unions demanding more and more that sparked GE to move south and to take other industries with it. As a result thereof the banks no longer had anyone to service so they folded too. The middle class was unable to pay the high taxes that followed and they took flight. I think you’ll find that that is the correct chronology.

  37. Con Filardi,

    The first collapse of B’port can be traced to the abandonment by industry. That was due to lower wages available in other areas, better transportation and the aging infrastructure of B’port (thanks Jasper). It was simply the cost of doing business.

    The second collapse or rather the failure to revive can also be blamed on the cost of doing business. Pay to play is not the way to revive a dead city. And if you think the feds cleared it up, think again. It exists not just in dinners, suits, and wine; but in the attitudes of pols who want a piece of the pie before it’s even put in the pan, and the incompetent staffs they hire to do their bidding.

  38. yahooy: what you heard is not what I posted – your clogged ears need, uh, un-clogging. Furthermore, no one owes you an answer to any question.

    Con Filardi: deficit spending preceded everything, including all the things you mentioned. We’re both right.

  39. Independent Soul:
    I guess I didn’t make myself clear. – It cost more to operate in Bridgeport at that time because the unions (rightfully or wrongfully) made wage demands on management which the latter were not able to pay. Accordingly they picked up and left for areas where manufacturing could be accomplished for much less.

    Local Eyes:
    I don’t doubt that “deficit spending” might have been a problem for the city back then. It seems to be a sickness that continues to plague us with a debt of $691,000,000 today and an annual carrying charge of $71,000,000.

    And more than all of that we have officials who fail to exercise the most elemental judgment. Just a week ago your mayor and former mayor attended a picnic given by one of the most prominent scofflaws the city has ever known. Both were seen accepting the favors and flavors of Mr. DiNardo. – Disgraceful!

  40. I too want Finch to succeed. I am not Anti Finch, I am anti ineffective Finch. Maybe the problem is that he is used to only two different modes of governing and can not pull himself from either:

    The first being what his last job was – shake hands, smile, kiss babies, drink martinis at dinners paid for by SIGs, and make empty promises no one will blame you for, because it was the other guy, or the other party that dropped the ball.

    The second being what he is more accustomed to in our wonderful city – Smile, shake hands, kiss babies, drink martinis at dinners paid for by SIGs, and let the party boss make all the decisions for you.

    Oh, that’s right, maybe he’s yet to realize that he’s forgotten to let the Party Boss have the reigns…

    He chose to run for this job, and he now has it. Show us something, anything. Please.

  41. Some members of this blog suffer from the “messiah complex” and look to The Mayor to propose and solve all the city’s problems — that’s not the case. The Mayor’s job is executive in nature. The Mayor Finch Fan Club is open to all those who suport the current Mayor and have high hopes for Bridgeport’s future. But if your FANTASY interferes with existing REALITY, please exclude your thoughts from this blog.

    BEST REGARDS to Joel G and his wife.

  42. Who the hell are you to ask anyone to exclude their posts from this blog. Who died and left you boss?
    Look Finch’s job is executive in nature but it’s his job to also appoint people that can move the city forward and to have the city running smoothly in its day-to-day operations. This is the area that keeps coming back to bite him in the ass. There is no Public Facilities director and no Economic Development Director.
    He has got to stop dabbling in petty politics and act as the Chief Executive. I am hopeful that he will do so and the city can start to move forward. We shall See.

  43. AH Mr. Walsh the Acorn Apologist or is it the Service Workers Lobbyest. What was the pay scale for a laborer on that project. How many hours did they work per week.
    He hired untrained laborers weren’t they local people. Isn’t that what everyone is crying about? Hiring local workers. Did you expct them to get union scale when they were untrained. It’s bullshit like this that keeps developers out of Bridgeport. I am sure that the developers in Stamford and Shelton did not have to deal with this stuff. You should take another look at your position on this stuff.

  44. Donj; Fairfield Ave is being torn up for the new electrical power lines that will end in Norwalk, Once the job is finished in Bridgeport the utility is contracted to repave all the roads along the path of travel for the lines Hope this helps

  45. Wondering,
    Where does all of this anger come from??? Are you a developer or simply a republican from the suburbs?
    As of June 2006 there were over 140 local living wage ordinances in the United States. In the state of Connecticut Hartford, New Haven, New Britain and Norwalk are among the cities on that list.
    Prevailing wage laws exists for construction work performed with federal, state and local funds.
    The Living Wage Ordinances simply state that if you receive a service contract from the local government or a tax subsidy then you too must pay a decent wage and provide for benefits.
    If a business does not want to pay a living wage, don’t ask for corporate welfare. It’s that simple.
    But if cheap developers like DiNardo want tax breaks then they have to pay their workers and the people who work on their properties a decent wage. Simple enough.
    I am neither a lobbyist nor an apologist. Just a follower of common sense. If you want assistance then you are expected to give assistance.

  46. Mr. Walsh I am a Bridgeport resident and have been all my life and just so you know I am a registered democrat. If there are laws on the books already why do we need more laws? If union labor is used then those requirements are met. BTW what is a living wage? So 4 out of 169 towns and cities in CT signed the agreement, big deal. Like I said if there are already laws in place let’s not make a feel-good law that politicians can claim credit for.
    I am also a taxpayer and they are current who is tired of nothing happening in Bridgeport. Why is nothing happening in Bridgeport? Lets try this on for size.
    Company wants to invest millions in Bridgeport and he has to put up with groups like Acorn and Certain Members of the Council who just like to break balls (u fall into that catagory).
    Protests are held looking for more affordable housing amongst high priced condos. I am sure that I want to spend $1,000,000 on a unit in a building where there are subsidized units.
    You have a coucilmen that wants to broker a deal with a service workers union that would hold the developer hostage before he can lease his hotel or restaurants fortunately that was dropped.
    Am I angry you are damn right I am.
    It’s great to worry about affordable housing but when is somebody in power going to worry about the hard working person that is not on public assistance and is struggling to keep his taxes current and his kids educated.

  47. Wondering,
    The city of Stamford requires any developers of housing in downtown and points south to ensure that 10% are affordable units. Those developers who do not wish to include this type must provide funding to non-profits so that they can build the units. This way if the affordable housing is not in the building it can be built along side of it. So much for the No Morons Rule.
    Congrats Joel

  48. Mr. Walsh,
    One of the reasons property taxes are so high in Bridgeport is that the State of Connecticut occupies too much prime real estate. Do we really need TWO court houses? Do we really another juvenile detention facility? Do we really need various state agencies scattered all over town? More than a few of them can and ought to be located in one central area. If Stop & Shop can put a pharmacy, a bank, a florist and a bakery all in one store (thereby making it easier for consumers to do business) why can’t the bureaucrats use the same logic regarding the city’s development?

    Developers don’t like to be told how to spend their investment capital, and there are too many self-inerested (self-important) community activists and organizations that exist primarily to do that: order around the developers that are investing in the city. Or they claim that there is racial inequality in Bridgeport. (Stand up, Lyle Hassan Jones.) There is racism in this town, but the greater problem afflicting its citizens is economic. Poverty knows no racial boundaries. There are more than a few people in Bridgeport that feel life is passing them by. And it is, because the city has failed to deliver any real educational and employment opportunities to the disenfranchised. To claim otherwise is to assume that most people are stupid.

  49. Bob Walsh instead of being on here go do your job and go work to lower taxes. People on this blog do not want to hear from you just go do your job because clearly you are not

  50. Oh Bob honey, you should know that wondering is Mario’s boy. A good little Democrat that dances in line with the rest. If Mario says jump, wondering says how high. Like all that protest too much, he gets to blog here, hide behind a name and portray himself as the savior of Bridgeport.

    It’s easy when you’re living off the city teat like he is. He doesn’t have to work for a living. He never has to make the tough votes; he’s told which way to vote. He just had to make sure that his buddies had a tee-off time in the old days at Fairchild Wheeler.

    Let’s hope the man stands for something at the next town committee meeting. Let’s have him stand up and say some of the things he says here, if he has the balls.

  51. Donj,
    Well said. Why is an elected official making so many entries on this blog? To my way of thinking that indicates that he has way too much time on his hands. So Mr. Walsh, I agree with donj: get off the blog and your soapbox and do the job the people of Bridgeport elected you to do.

  52. I commend Bob Walsh for posting here. He is not hiding behind a false name. He posts what he feels no matter what the backlash is. Keep posting !!

  53. Mr. Walsh,

    For the record, Stamford’s pricing level for affordable housing and income level is not the same as B’port. Also, the 10% requirement can be anywhere in the city, not in the building or even nearby.

    btw, I partially agree with the others … you should be spending more time thinking outside the box to solve city problems. You can spend as much time here as you want but these people aren’t the ones you need to impress.

  54. fedupwithcityhall – poor you, your panties are in a wad about me! you would think you’d be fed up with trying to convince yourself that I work in city hall. well, again, there’s no hair salon in there, so you don’t have to sweat it worrying if I’m wasting your tax dollars if I check in on the blog during the day. Why do I stick up for Finch, only his hair stylist knows for sure. Now theres a new rumor for you to start, even though you really have no clue.

    Joel – congratulations on the new baby! What is her name, not Lennie I hope.

    Walsh – get a life and do what you were elected to do rather than gripe all the time. Try to see the positives for once in your life.

    ACORN – get lost, stop trying to force feed yourselves to developers. Wondering – good posting!

    Enough of all this, its Friday night and I’m heading out to have some fun, I think the rest of you should also.

  55. Gonzalez

    I hope that your child will know compassion, love, trust, confidence and be a source of inspiration to others.

    To do so, she must learn from you and your family.


  56. At 8:35 a.m. my wife gave birth to a 7 lb. 15 ounce baby girl with 10 fingers and toes. We named her Joelie Linette Gonzalez. My wife wanted to name her after my late son and I picked the closest middle name to “Lennie”.
    Thank you all for the good wishes and I’ll post a picture of Linette G. when I have the time.

  57. Tom Kelly:

    Linette is English and it means Pretty One (not to suggest Lennie is pretty). Luca was a close second. Thanks TK.
    Yahooy, I’ll keep that in mind. One never knows what cards one will be dealt in life or what roads our children will choose. Godspeed is the correct word. Thanks.

  58. You’re right, you’re right. Walsh should be commended for posting under his real name, unlike the rest of us pussies.

    So, tell us, is “FedUpWithCityHall” your given name? Your last name? What? Sounds like it could be of German derivation…hmmmmm…

  59. What’s this about an Acorn Pledge? Those who signed it, did it just for the camera. I’m sure none will dare to try and amend the Steel Point contract to create affordable housing or better paying jobs. Did Acorn try to get Max Medina to sign on? I hear Medina is the attorney representing the Steel Point developer and it pays more than the “mayor” position.

  60. Acorn was the first Community Organization that I got involved with on a volunteer basis. I remember the first major action we took. It involved the Banks red-lining of poor neighborhoods. People’s Bank was our main local target and before I knew it, the banks gave over $50,000 to Acorn to run a home buyers assitance program and that was the end of the Acorn actions. I’ll bet that if the developers feel the pressure, they will pay Acorn to run some construction training and hiring program, putting an end to Acorn actions for years to come. I wonder if the Banks are still red-lining?

  61. Let’s forget for a moment that Finch’s administration has done nothing except make mistakes, that he is incapable of focusing, that he is incapable of returning e-mails, phone calls and showing up anywhere on time, and that he is an insecure, name-dropping political whore. Let’s focus on his character. Finch’s word is made to be broken. He is a charlatan of the highest degree. Unions know it. His pro-union performance at the Edwards event was like a sick joke he was trying to perpetrate on the public. People who once supported him see that he is shallow, insincere, disloyal and underhanded. Let’s look at his character, he has twisted arms, and threatened people’s jobs to get votes for Stafstrom and supported the sham Chairmanship of Cynthia King. He deliberately lied to people to get their vote, not that is something new in a politician of his ilk, but then he turned around and killed them with taxes, cut services and a vengeful fit on the SEIU. In three years he will look to friends that he has turned his back on for support and find that there aren’t many if any left. The only people who will be left are the ones who want something and when he can’t give it, they will jump ship too. I can’t tell you how many times I have heard that Finch can’t be trusted and he’ll stick a knife in your back while smiling that stupid vapid grin. I will spend every day on this blog for the next three years to bring home the point that this is not a man to be trusted on any level. He uses people and lies to them. And then he justifies it to himself because he is incapable of ever admitting he was wrong. Every Democratic endorsed candidate that he is screwing with take note. State and Federal DTCs remind yourself how many times he has thumbed his nose at Democratic endorsed candidates. I have watched first hand how he has destroyed people that were true to him. Most people know how he, Adam and Stafstrom are screwing other Democrats. (FYI when Obama wins Shays won’t have a pot to piss in, you arrogant jerk.) Do they really think they are fooling the City Council or Mario or most of the other DTC members? Mario has to know what a phony he is. People insult others for being partisan hacks on this blog, but you gotta dance with the one that brung ya and when you don’t there should be hell to pay. He’ll get in bed with anyone as long as he thinks it would benefit him and feed Wood and Stafstrom’s need to be in control. Finch sucks Stafstrom like he was mother’s milk, while Wood just sucks. The combo of Finch, Wood and Stafstrom is a deadly trifecta. Finch needs to be exposed for the liar he is. Maybe that’s why he can’t get rid of Stafstrom, because the power mad, vengeful bitch holds something over Finch’s head. Unions, real Democrats, (that doesn’t include Lieberman) keep the pressure on this joke of a Mayor and make sure he goes in three years.

  62. Paging Auden Grogins:

    I’m putting together a “Platform for Reform” and I’d like to get some feedback from the folks at OIB. I started with the Death Penalty and I thought it would be a good idea to let Auden know what I would do with her client in the event (surely) he is convicted of the Cheshire murders. If you are interested in hearing a different perspective on Capital punishment click on the Joel Gonzalez link on the top left of this page and click on “Platform for Reform”.

  63. johnb

    So. I take you are NOT a member of the Finch Fan Club.

    City Kitty, MCAT and all the Pollyanna misinformed

    You really need to realize that because Finch is so demonstrably inept, there is an ever-growing faction in this town that will band together to ensure we are rid of him, his type and those who put him there.

    More and more capable citizens are giving careful consideration to running for high public office.

    The day of the blind, vote the party line, democrat has seen better times. Even these myopic loyalist job protecting popinjays are realizing that they, too, are being shafted by Mario Testa et al.

    Good bye Mario, Sal, Paul, Safstrom, Lisa…

  64. OIB is only 7 posts away from its first 100-post day !

    So add another post and wonder who this is intended for:

    Duuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuude, if politics were a football team, you’d be the water boy!

  65. According to today’s existing standards, the ignorant trollop known to us as “Local Eyes” aspires to become a cockroach.
    Failing that, perhaps Mayor of Bridgeport .

    PS You are a fine example of exactly what is wrong with this city.

  66. Yahooy, please remove MCAT from your list. It is apparent you have not been paying attention. MCAT has left the building. Also, I saw former daiquiri drinker Pollyanna sitting on a barstool drinking Bombay crying in her gin. I asked her what was the matter and she said she needed to talk to Envoy and tell him how her faith had been shattered and the Kryptonite finally did her in. I pulled her off the stool and she is in the process of going to a 12-step group FFF (Former Finch Fans). I told her I’d post for her and ask if Envoy would be her sponsor.

  67. THANK YOU JohnB!!! Well said!! and as for you J- Oh I mean City Kitty. Keep believing you are a hair stylist LOL! Check out your first post ever where you are defending the “greeter”. I think that is you and if it is you need a stylist! BADLY!!

  68. Fedup – I have no clue who you THINK I am, and honestly, I don’t give a s---. Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to get to work. Find somebody else to make your stupid comments to today, or maybe go get your hair done.

  69. Tom Kelly:
    I second that sentiment. Tony Snow was a good man with grace, decency and great professionalism. I’ve missed not seeing him since the day of his last White House press conference He did a great job covering up for an inept president.
    May he rest in peace.

  70. Keeley is in for the bum’s rush. His days of living in a Tammany Hall fantasy world are coming to an end. We need more responsible leadership in Hartford. Keeley is just like Caruso in that he never had a real job and refuses to grow up, throwing a tantrum whenever he doesn’t get his way. Now would be a good time for him to submit his resume to the used-car dealers in the area, eh?

  71. Joel,
    I think community activism is a good thing, but how much of that money People’s Bank gave to ACORN was actually spent on helping minority homebuyers? This is a classic example of a community activist organization pimping off the very people it claims to be representing. I’d be willing to bet that the paid employees take home a decent paycheck.

  72. Bridgeport Kid

    Are you initmating that Auden is a Bum? To say that would be giving the readers a bum steer. Audie’s got a nice enough bum, but Keeley is going to win.

  73. Bobby Murcer today joined an elite group of Yankees today in Baseball Heaven. He was welcomed by Mickey Mantle and Thurman Munson as he crossed Home Plate.

  74. Tom:
    Who would have ever thought!

    I would like to announce that the Ospreys at Ash Creek are the proud parents of two chicks!!! I believe they made their entry into the world today. Congratulations are in order (particularly since the parents have been sitting on their nest since April first).

  75. Paging Father Kelly:
    Lennie hits fifty July 13th. I’ve ordered his subscription to Modern Maturity. I’m trying to coax Lennie back from the ledge. Please advise!

  76. Put some Viagra crumbs out on the ledge and tell him that “Fifty is Nifty!” That will get him up, I mean off the ledge. Happy 50th Honey!!! Fuckin’ A!!!

  77. The big “Five-0”. Lennie, you are officially a member of the old guard Mario made a reference to. If Mario considers rival Democrats “The old guard” where does Mario fall? Mario is the founder of the old guard.

    Mario struggles too much for words and is obviously trying to paint a positive picture of him as Chairman. I listen between the words as that’s where one can find what the speaker really means. At 5:05 into the interview Mario states that he had 46 votes for T.C. Chair until the Finch Administration stepped in and started untwisting arms. If Finch was untwisting arms, who twisted the arms in the first place?
    Towards the end of the interview, Mario claims to have a good working relationship with the City Council, but he only met with the Black and Hispanic caucus. Where were the other 8 Council members? Now that the Blacks and Hispanics have a majority on the Council, they get to sit on the table of Testo’s. Brilliant move! They are easier to manipulate, sell on the cheap and their arms twist like door knobs.
    Mario’s advice to Bill Finch is a chilling revelation of how the T.C. Chairman manipulates the legislative process. He states that if Finch works with the party, the council members will go along with the mayor. 6:09-6:13 “You can get a lot accomplished through the council with less headache and everything else”. This makes the T.C. Chairman acting Council President. If Mario can be acting Council President, why couldn’t Staftstrom be acting T.C. Chairman?
    This Pol Pod reveals the problem with the Bridgeport Democratic Machine. The party Machine does not stay away from the legislative duties of its elected officials and insists on calling the shots. The duties and responsibilitites of the T.C. Chair is to attend to party matters such as creating good candidates and fund raising. It’s disgusting to know that an out of town resident not elected in Bridgeport, is selected as Chairman of the Bridgeport Democratic Party and allowed to manipulate our legislative process.

  78. Joel: There always has to be a good working relationship with the TC the council and the mayor. Without that relationship nothing gets done as we can now see. The president of the council no matter who it is is not an island of power. The democratic machine was fine with you up until a few months ago now its an evil devil. I am sure after your next defeat you will be saying the same thing about the Republican machine.
    Out of town resident where does that come from. Does it mean that if a person lives in Bridgeport but owns a summer home he becomes an out of towner? I guess a lot of us are out of towners then. Why aren’t you mentioning a few primary candidates that truly don’t live in the district they are running in.
    BTW what has been manipulated by Testa since Finch became the mayor.

  79. Happy Birthday Lennie! Welcome to the club. Wait ’til you see how many AARP applications you get in the mail. It’s amazing. Ask Tom Kelly, if he’s not too busy driving all the Miss Daisies out there. He helps every damsel in distress…a real super hero, I hear!

  80. Lennie: Lucky are those that get there. Happy Birthday and 50 more.

    Y’all: The lead story in the Conn Post today is consoling to those of us who are not into party politics and are looking for the best candidate rather than the “machine picked”. The story starts with the following words:

    HARTFORD — Connecticut’s landmark campaign finance program is cleansing the election system of lobbyists and state contractors, sending a shiver of change through the political culture.

    Whether they like it or not, hundreds of General Assembly members and wannabes are adapting to the first campaign that excludes special interest money.

    Election officials say the 151 House and 36 Senate contests seem to be running smoothly as they dole out public dollars for the Aug. 12 primaries. But some local political operatives are grousing about the new rules, and one veteran legislator already has been booted out of the program.


  81. Gossip of The Rialto!

    OIB Pol Pod to feature a Grumpy Grimaldi Grousing about crossing the 50 yd. line.

    Audie qualifies for State Dole Pineapple funding. Hopes to pick-off Keeley with the help of lending tree.

    Pia Zadora, beautifully coiffed. seen assessing the Bridgeport political scene. She’s no fair weather friend.

  82. Happy Birthday Len. I have heard users saying to you that you should have some type of video of the vote on election day in November and I should say that would be a good idea. What do the rest think?

  83. My father always told me that you know you “made it ” when you’re featured in Harry Neigher’s column! Still have a yellowed copy of the clipping when he “made it”, telling all the single girls that he was snagged and off the market when he got engaged to my mother!

  84. Lennie:


    Judgement and wisdom generally improve with advancing age. Other things definitely do not.

    So relish today’s golf handicap while you can. And trade off some of that late night time at the keyboard… for more time with Mo.


  85. RE: Printing Press Success

    Nation Deficit spending began in 1965. Medicare and the entire Vietnam War were financed with printed money to spare existing taxpayers an increase in, uh, taxes. LBJ led the way.

    Once we understansd that national deficit spending and the resulting inflation are the antithesis of discipline and hard work, it becomes easy to understand what has happened ever since. Naturally, no politician has ever addressed this issue.

    Leave it to an OIB blogger to inform readers of how Bridgeport got to be the way it is today.

  86. “Nation Deficit spending began in 1965.”

    Amazing. Can you believe how ignorant people can be. And we have to put up with this drivel day after day.

    Local Eyes…the more you post as a dyed-in-the-wool democrat, the more discerning people will vote for the other guy.

    Please continue………

  87. Local Eyes, tell Yahooy to stick it up his Yahooy. Yahooy was Hoover’s numbers man before Anna coerced him into Liberty Rock. He’s not been the same since.

  88. well, um, uh, er…

    National PEACETIME deficit spending started in 1965 explains Bridgeport’s situation today. The deficit spending between 1933 and 1941 had no victims and fewer benefits.

    I made a mistake but so did what’s-his-name.

  89. Happy 50th Birthday, Lennie!

    Welcome to the 50’s Club!!!

    Tried to squeeze in a march with the Puerto Rican Day Parade this morning, but got sidetracked by a mini-work related emergency and scheduling conflict. However, I managed to visit the starting line at Central High for about 15 minutes and “meet and greet” the many luminaries present and en route to Seaside Park.

    Enjoy your Birthday celebrations and wishing you many more! A big hug to Mo from Timi and me.

  90. message to what’s-his-name:

    TAKE A LAP and upon return, report to me for calisthetics. I hope you like dirt because you’re gonna be kissing the ground a lot.

    Summer Wind: you’re a cool breeze on a hot day.

  91. THERE ARE ONLY two ways The USA government can get something for nothing.

    1 – direct printing (1965 – 1981) – it never has to be repaid but causes inflation.

    2 – direct borrowing (1981 – present) – it incurs a debt that today is about 10 trillion dollars. At present 32% of tax revenue goes to paying interest on that debt; not a penny has been repaid (gulp).

    THE REAL TAX BURDEN of any government is what they SPEND which involves tax revenue PLUS deficit spending.

    America’s best-kept secret is what happened in 1981 when Reagan was President.

  92. “THERE ARE ONLY two ways The USA government can get something for nothing.”

    “At present 32% of tax revenue goes to paying interest on that debt; not a penny has been repaid (gulp).”

    Getting something for nothing REALLY costs a LOT of money.

    Macro economics apparently isn’t big in the Bridgeport school system.

  93. GOLLY

    Salcedo didn’t have time to participate in one of the biggest events in his district but he did manage 15 minutes at Central High.

    Get your head in the game counselor! Too many of you campy posts begin with…I tried, but…


  94. Local Eyes and Summer Wind:
    You two evidently have the reason why Bridgeport is wallowing in slums, with all its industry shut down. Are you blaming it on the Federal Government’s tendency to print worthless money? I’m not sure that I understand what you’re saying and to whom you’re saying it (i.e. “what’s his name”).
    Please clarify.

  95. yahooy:

    I do what I can with what I’ve got, time-wise or otherwise.

    Yes, today was a big day in the district with the Puerto Rican Day parade, but I didn’t see Ezequiel anywhere at the starting line up, or his dad or Mitch Robles, the district leader. I said “hello” to Chico, and to AG Dick Blumenthal, Mayor Finch, Jim Himes, et al.

    As you may have read in today’s Sunday CT Post, the requirements for participation in the Citizens Election Program (CEP) are quite extensive and strict. It’s time consuming to raise the money, at least, I found that to be the case as a first time candidate, but I cannot complain. If I satisfy all the requirements and submit my paperwork by this Thursday, I hope to join the other candidates who have successfully completed the CEP requirements. To date, I see that Auden is the only Bridgeport-based candidate who has been awarded the grant. That puts me squarely in the same category as the more experienced and better known candidates from the area unless there’s some sort of hidden political strategy being played out that I’m not aware of.

    Do you live in the 130th District? If so, what are your concerns? If you’re not a resident/voter in the 130th, list for me your issues of concern anyway. I’m willing to have a one way debate with you in place of my political opponents. You seem to have keen interest trying to get candidates to discuss issues even though you know that my opponents are not willing to hold a candidates’ debate or to participate in a ‘meet the candidate’ type event. By the way, I’m still waiting for Wondering to respond to my query about his confidence in the fact that Chico is not afraid or “reluctant” to debate anyone.

    So, fire away, yahooy…one question, one answer. multi-questions, multi-answers. We’re in the OIB no-spin zone.

    My issue of interest for the 130th District is posted and has been posted in my website. www .salcedoforstaterep.com. Please have a look.

    Also, I’d like to have a campaign manager, but I don’t have one. No one on this blog seems to be interested in a great political job. Yet, I don’t complain about it.
    I’d like to be retired, like Chico, and have all the time in the world to run a first class campaign in the 130th, but I’m not there yet.
    I’d like to have my dad and stepfather run my campaign for me, like Ezequiel, but it’s not in the cards for me. Yet, I don’t complain about it because I knew before putting my hat in the ring that there are some, if not many, limitations that I would have to deal with along the way.

    The ball is in your court.

  96. Happy Birthday. Jim Himes ran a great campaign at the Pr parade. and this parade was much better the the boring Black Rock parade. They put up Himes signs all over Bpt today – Chris Shays is going down.

  97. GOSH

    What a complete misread. I think you are the best candidate. I intend to vote for you.

    I thought Caruso was the best candidate. He ran an ineffective campaign. The other guy got elected and is costing us dearly. You seem to be doing the same thing.

    You are in an enviable position to rid your district of the blight the incumbent has perpetrated by self-interest parasitic ways.

    You are the future of this city. When you win, others with similar vision will step up and run for office.

    As a pioneer in our renaissance it is imperative that you not start all of your pronouncements with, “…I tried, BUT.”

  98. Bridgeport suffers from decisions made by The Feds long ago when printing money didn’t have bad repercussions. Today, The Fed’s follies have ingnited globalism in an irreversible fashion. Everything made overseas (cars, appliances, steel and clothes) used to be made here until we priced ourselves out of our own markets. Price is king. American industry declined in direct proportion to our obsession with printing money. When I was a boy, “Made in Japan” was synonymous with junk. Today, Toyota is the USA’s favorite car and GM and Ford are in a tragic freefall. The main purpose of our Federal Government is to produce a balanced budget every year.
    Deficit Spending and the resulting inflation explain everything. With few exceptions, Americans are broke(deficit spending destroys domestic savings) and the best way to get that money back is to sell things to foreigners who now have money to spend. We’ve been exporting money, I think it’s time to export product. When used properly, your computer is a factory without a smokestack – I think the answer to our problem is sitting on your desktop.

    Summer Wind – although a great person – was uninvolved with this post.

  99. I nominate Up Yours Bridgeport for City Sanitation Engineer. He’s so well-aquainted with the underside of the human condition, after all . . .

  100. Pick a district, anyone and you’ll find a clown running for state rep! Unexperienced, personal gain, nepotism backed clown. And some of the incumbents fare no better either. Slim chance that voters will vote for the right individuals instead of political parties like always. Times are getting bad & sending more bench-warmers to Hartford is not in Bpt’s favor during a recession. But unfortunately most voters in the Park City could care less. Oh they’ll complain alright about this & that but to do their homework on who’s the best candidate, “forget about it”!

  101. I’ve known Mario Testa for 35 years. After listening to your interview with him entitled ‘A Chat With Chairman Mario” I can see that he’s the same little weasel he was back in the ’70s! When I looked at the article’s headline, my mind’s eye at first saw “A Chat With Chairman Mao.”
    I guess it’s the old subconscious mind at work … eh? Hey Mario … What’s up with my meatball Parm?!?


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