Residents of Coeymans, especially those who always have something to complain about, like Ms Mary Driscoll, should be grateful to the Crandall Board. If you have read the Crandall Interview, you would be aware that Mr Crandall’s policy regarding public comment is extraordinarily democratic. We quote directly from Segment 2 of the Crandall Interview:
Mr Crandall:- Public comment is public comment. I don’t care who you are or what you say…I don’t care who you are, it’s public comment: Say it! It’s a free country.
[Crandall Interview (Transcript), Segment 2, p. 11, lines 4-6]
And those residents of Coeymans, particularly Nate Boomer of the FOCs, who seem to know what’s going on “in all the other towns,” [Boomer public comment on October 24, 2019], would or should know that other municipalities, New Baltimore, for example, LIMIT public comment to 3 minutes only! Mr Crandall’s Board apparently has no limit, a point taken advantage of by too many.
Another certaintly is this: Three things you can be certain of meeting up with at a Coeymans Town Board meeting these days: The bully-thug team of FOC, Barbara Tanner with some complaint whatever, and Mary Driscoll at the mike bitching about some nonsense or other (courtesy of FOC). Never fails. Count on them. But another certainty is that every village and small town has a Mary Driscoll, bless their simple little souls. They’re harmless to everyone but do themselves the biggest mischief.
The final certainty is mentioned above: Everyone appearing before the Coeymans Town Board in public session has access to the mike. No exceptions. The proof follows…because Mr Crandall believes, “I don’t care who you are, it’s public comment: Say it! It’s a free country.” And so we have…
Mary Driscoll’s Irrelevant and Whacky Lecture:
Norman Rockwell’s “Four Freedoms”
and How they Apply to Life in the Town of Coeymans
OR Just Call Me Looney.
Along with the circus performance of the Coeymans Clowns a.k.a. FOC (“Friends of Coeymans), Ms Mary Driscoll, dowager harridan and resident lecturer at Coeymans Town Hall, gave a stellar — albeit irrelevant and confused — public lecture presentation on Norman Rockwell’s quartette of paintings, the Four Freedoms.
Ms Driscoll, at times muttering inaudibly into the microphone, while fumbling with her one supporting prop, an unrecognizable relic of some sort, a dusty framed picture, to which she referred to as Norman Rockwell’s “Four Freedoms.” While we doubt that Rockwell would have recognized his masterworks in the frame, we can be reasonably certain that he was rolling in his grave with Driscoll’s somewhat foggy interpretation of his works.
Here’s what Driscoll had to say to the delight and wonder of all those assembled at the October 24, 2019, Coeymans Town Board Meeting:
“Memories of my childhood keep cropping up [Inaudible. Ms Driscoll fumbling with a picture frame at microphone.]”
Smalbany: OK. This is gonna be good. We can wait. Will somebody p-u-h-leez hold that g*d-damned picture for her, already!!!
“Especially when Norman Rockwell’s his latest pictures…uh…paintings, they weren’t pictures. His most famous paintings were called the Four Freedoms. And since their message is so much more important in this world, I’d like to explain them to you.”
Smalbany: OMG, she’s going to “explain” them to us. Pictures, paintings? Who gives a sh*t? We’ll take your word for it: they are his most “famous paintings.” It’s good to know that their message is “important in this world,” because I doubt they would be of much use to us in the next world. Thank you!
“The first picture is called Freedom of Speech. [inaudible] I’m willing to bet … [inaudible] to ask their questions, not that we ever got answers, especially if you were a resident of this Town. I’m also confident [that] no Council member then … can ask any person who asks to speak,”How old are you?” or words to that effect. On top of all that, your so-called Rules — they’re not laws, rules — new rules pop up every meeting, such as, don’t stand up to take pictures — unless you’re the County Legislator.”
Smalbany: Picture, painting? Didn’t we already do this? OK. We can understand a lady has a problem with questions about “age,” but really. What’s the problem you have with rules, Mary? Every meeting is governed by so-called “Rules of Order,” or aren’t you aware of that fact. Furthermore, when adults can’t act like civilized adults, then someone has to set the rules for decent behavior. If people behave, there’s no need for rules. Perhaps, instead of addressing the Board, who has had to have police present to control your FOC friends at meetings, you should discuss civilized and appropriate behavior with your FOC friends. You seem to think that it’s OK for them to overspeak others, to interrupt, to address the board disrespectfully. Or that it’s OK to stand in front of a resident and video record private conversations, invading not only their space but also their privacy. Even when asked to stop, they continue harassing people. But all that’s OK. You say Rockwell would approve of that and that’s the message in his “Freedom of Speech” painting. Different…
“The second picture is Freedom of Religion. I really didn’t have too much to say about that, until I read a piece of propaganda being circulated around Town, which attacks one of the most family-oriented and religious families in our community, who have always worked hard to make our community a great place to live. To insinuate that they would give up their principles, integrity, and honesty by making dishonest deals is ludicrous.”
Smalbany: We’re not quite clear what you’re talking about, and are pretty damned certain you don’t either, Ms Driscoll. Is this something your FOC friends fed you before the meeting? What does it have to do with the Town Board? Are you insinuating they’re circulating the “propaganda”? More likely than not it’s your FOC friends doing that. Isn’t that how they work? And who is this saintly family? We are at a loss to identify such a family as you describe. Furthermore, I don’t think the issue has anything to do with one’s freedom of worship or conscience but more to do about how they pervert the teachings of religion or their hypocrisy. Wouldn’t that be more accurate. (Are you talking about the Flach-s by any chance?)
“Or, a member of your Town Council, being humiliated by another member of the Town Council, by embarrassing them because of a financial problem.”
Smalbany: Another cryptic anecdote. But what does it have to do with Rockwell’s “Freedom of Religion.” Never mind. Let’s move this along.
“The third picture is Freedom From Want. that’s simple. No job, no food. No food on the table. No job, no home to live in. No job, no money for [town?] taxes or school taxes. A lot of us have to work for a living.”
Smalbany: OK. What’s your point. I don’t know anyone in the area who is starving, living under a bridge, etc. Perhaps you’re referring to your FOC friends’ bosses. Should they be free of “want” like “I Want more money” or “I want more tax breaks” or “I want more of more?” “We want your brain’ and “We want your soul!” Yeah! We in this community should be free of THEIR want; THEIR GREED!!!
“The fourth picture is Freedom of [sic, recte: from] Fear. What can our children look forward to? What will our Town workers have to worry about as to what benefits will be taken away next? Less police protection? Less EMTs — less emergency medical technicians? Will we have to worry about the county ambulance to come from wherever? And then, will we have to prove that we have insurance before being treated? “
Smalbany: Philosophically speaking all pleasure is accompanied by pain; all happiness by suffering. The greatest hold on human beings is the basic human being’s attachment to what he or she has right now, and the denial that someday, he or she will have to lose it all through death. In the meantime, the Town Board has ensured the security of Town workers by negotiation wage increases and longer contract terms. This step has improved the lives of the workers and has stabilize Town budget processes. The same has been done for the Coeymans Police Department. Are you saying that these measures, negotiated with the respective unions, voted on and approved by the concerned workers, is causing them “fear” or “worry.” Where are you getting your misinformation, Missy?
And what’s all this about ambulances? You might want to turn on your hearing aid, dearie, because it’s common knowledge that you have a Ravena Rescue Squad, Inc., a private company contracted by the Village and Town to provide emergency medical services, including ambulance transportation. The Town negotiates with them and pays a hefty fee for them to provide those services. In fact, in about 2016, the Town was overpaying them to the tune of an extra $70,000 a year (thanks to Aaron Flach’s cousin, then Town Supervisor Steven Flach; Is that the saintly family you’re referring to above?) because the Ravena Rescue Squad never informed the Town that New Baltimore was back on board; the Ravena Rescue Squad never though to return the Town’s, that is, the taxpayers’ money until Mr. Crandall investigated and demanded them to return the money. Did you know that at the time they had almost a million dollars (actually only about $700,000) stashed away at a bank? If you’re worried about ambulance services, maybe you should attend a Ravena Rescue Squat shareholders meeting or a meeting of their board of directors, and voice your concerns there.
Seriously, why are you addressing medical treatment and insurance at the Town Board meeting? Maybe you should call Medicare or Medicaid, or your health insurance provider. Whether a care provider requires proof of insurance or refuses to provide treatment isn’t something the Board controls. Maybe Norman Rockwell can help you out with this. But then, he’s dead, isn’t he. Oh well. Guess we have to live in fear then.
Speaking of fear, have you spoken to your FOC friends about intimidation, harassment, fear, bullying, thuggery. That might be a more appropriate place to start. Just a though, Mary.
“Oh, yes! We may have clean air but if we keep losing our freedoms as we have been for the last few years, we will end up with nothing.”
Smalbany: Somewhere in the course of your diatribe we got lost. Are you arguing that our so-called freedoms as you’ve interpreted them, albeit confusedly, would be worth a bucket of stale urine if we can’t breathe? If we have to breath pollutants from burning rubbish, garbage, tires provided courtesy of LaFarge and George McHugh, and FOC friends, you may reasonably be concerned who will pay for out oxygen masks and oxygen, when our lungs are dissolving. Or who will pay for the dialysis when the toxins and poisons seep into our water from the tainted and contaminated C&D (construction and demolition debris) used by Carver Laraway and the Coeymans Port and Industrial Park as fill to expand the usable land. Yes. We think that the question of who will pay for the dialysis and therapy is a valid question. Maybe George McHugh will start up a special fund — while granting tax breaks to LaFarge and Carver Laraway, placing the burden for any programs squarely on the shoulders of the working taxpayer — for those afflicted and sickened by his clients’ criminal pollution and undermining of the state and federal environmental laws. (Right, Billy Biers? Isn’t the real reason your warehouse project was dumped because you failed to do the necessary traffic and impact studies? Tell the TRUTH now, finally. We have the documents, Bud.)
Quite frankly, when LaFarge poisons our air, and Carver Laraway poisons our soils and water, while destroying habitat and oxygen producing vegetation, and disturbs the natural flows of local waterways, we really won’t have to worry about “freedoms” Rockwell paintings or not. We’ll be more concerned with breathing!!!
Save your lectures for your FOC friends, George McHugh, Carver Laraway, Aaron Flach, and the rest of that camp. They need the lecture, not us.
“Norman Rockwell saw that years ago. Too bad we don’t see it now.”
Smalbany: Norman Rockwell was a gifted artist who saw an idealized world through the eyes of the artist. You, my dear, are seeing a perverse world through the eyes of a different generation, and trying to identify the shadowy figures of devils telling you that the shadows you see through your glaucoma and cataracts are actually luminous angels. We can’t help you much if you choose to listen to what the devils are whispering into your furry little ears; they appear to be louder than the singing of the angels. Be afraid, very afraid. Pray hard, very hard.
A four-minute lecture took hours to finish. Mary’s oxygen did not run out the entire time. It finally stopped and so did the pain in our heads.
Plus the Featured Resident Comment:
The Coeymans Clowns, the FoC, Are True to Their Reputation: Thugs