Tuesday, March 24, 2009

New Britain Herald ��” watchdog or lapdog? by: Rick Guinness

Print Version > New Britain Herald ��” watchdog or lapdog?


Anonymous said...

The smear merchants have been purged from the Herald. I thought the Herald was a community newspaper not a watchdog smear rag?

Didn't Pawlak have Guiness fired when he was Mayor?

Under the "old" leadership readership was plummeting due to the "tabloid" smear emphasis.

Why keep employees that were responsible for the massive decrease in readership?

New owners have the right to bring in people who they think will be successful in ANY business. Why would the Herald be any different?

Move on. It's a new day.

Anonymous said...

Gee, How do you start with this one?

First off I guess we have to look at the coverage of politics the last several years by the journal inquirer company.

Clearly there was a slant in coverage that seemed to favor democratic members of the city council. Many articles were de void of quotes from the republican (conservative) members of city government.

Alderman Phil Sherwood was quoted so often that members of the public wondered if it was not the freshman alderman who was controlling policy for the democratic caucus in New Britain.

Events that shed a positive light on the Administration seemed to be "back paged". When they were used as a front page story often the commentary centered on the thoughts and talking points of Democrats on the city common council, often without responses from City Hall and/or the republican council members.

That being said, Mr. Guinness is making some very provocative accusations against not only the Mayor (who has a well documented pattern of using abusive language and bulling tactics) but also the new owners and editors of the New Britain Herald.

The new owner Michael Schroeder and editor James Smith have very strong credentials and backgrounds in journalism. I for one am having difficulty believing that they are in the back pocket of Mayor Stewart.

Rick Guinness also has a long history of investigative reporting covering local towns. Many people attribute the cities get tough on gangs policies of the late eighties and early nineties on the well written and sometimes shocking stories that Mr. Guinness provided the readers of the New Britain Herald.

My opinion is that, as many folks involved in local issues would tell you off the record are that Mr. Guinness may have issues that are more personal in nature.

Having attended several town Council meetings in the last few years I myself have been approached by Mr. Guinness. He had become, for lack of better words, unkempt or at the least very unprofessional in appearance and attitude.

Mr. Guinness I think this all sour grapes.

The Thorn said...

Boy do the liberals get nasty when they don't get their way.

Sounds like someone is upset that the Herald is finally doing some responsible reporting, and of course the left wing lunatic fringe doesn't ever want fair reporting about anything involving Republicans.

All they want to do is spread their socialist propaganda.

The Herald was as one sided as the New York Times, and that is why it suffered the same fate--financial ruin.

If Mr. Schroeder wants to turn this paper around, he will keep up the fair and balanced reporting, but where have I heard that before?

Could it be from the most watched news network in America--8 years running?

Anonymous said...

wow- that article and that man are crazy!

As someone who has been "quoted" by Guiness, I am glad he is gone. He would take a 5 min conversation, pick out small portions from all over and then string them together as if I said it like that. Totally changing the context / meaning of what I said. He is a poor excuse for a journalist and THAT is why he is gone!

As for the Gerratana incident - funny how he reported that Ald. Gerratana called Mr Demaio and ASKED for some info - when in fact he called Mr Demaio and DEMANDED that his orders be followed! That is the issue - the council has no power to directly order dept heads around. Report on the whole story Rick!

Anonymous said...

Pat Thibodeau was an excellent reporter that not only took on City Hall BUT also provided insightful in-depth analysis FROM ALL SIDES.
Pat never allowed one side to dominate the media coverage. HE knew what journalism was. Pat was fair and balanced long before Fox News.
Good luck to Mr. Schroeder, Mr. Smith, Jim Craven, and Scott Whipple.

Mark Bernacki

GOP guy said...

sounds like sour grapes because the public wasn't buying the left wing propaganda that he was peddling. why do you think no one wanted to read the communist manifesto as the New Britain Herald had become in recent years?
I delivered the Herald door to door when I was a kid, but it got to the point where I wouldn't even take one for free if it were offered to me.

Tim Stewart said...

Frank, PLease don't allow smear merchants to misrepresent themselves on your blog, especially as the mayor. If I am to write a comment I would not be cowardly like your last post and not identify myself. And for the record it's about time the Herald did report the news instead of trying to create it!
Mayor Stewart

Anonymous said...

We saved the newspaper for the people not City Hall.Everyone should listen to Mr Schroader tonight on Nutmeg TV @7:00 PM

Herald Reader said...

Too bad Rick Guiness let himself get under the influence of the likes of Phil Sherwood and company. In so doing he alienated himself from many readers in the political arena. Rick had written compassionate articles, such as the woman on dialysis, whose husband was deported to Poland. When it became clear Rick was under the influence of Sherwood and company, the Herald should have pulled his City Hall assignments and assigned him to community interest articles.

Anonymous said...

MR. Guinness does it again - he allows democrats on the NB Council and former Democrat mayors to control the comments on what happens at city hall. Alderman Roy Centeno knows full well that questioning of NB Department Directors or Department Heads is never a problem at Council meetings.

Watch any Council meeting on TV and you will see it happens at every meeting. Gerratana did something entirely different, he tried to give Parks and Recreation Bill DeMaio an order as he did with another city hall employee.

Neither Mayor Pawlak nor Mayor DeFronzo would have allowed that. DeFronzo tries to muddy the story by bringing up the "fence" issue again.

The new Herald publisher Michael Schroeder needs to bring veracity back to what is printed in The Herald. Some Herald reporters are only writing what they are told by Phil Sherwood and members of his political party and from the overseers on the DTC Chairman McNamara plantation .

Anonymous said...

Copy of the Mayor Stewart's letter to the Aldermen and department heads: - January 22, 2009

Alderman Gregory Gerratana
674 Lincoln Street
New Britain, CT 06052

Dear Alderman Gerratana:

Given the tenor and content of your recent phone messages and conversations with Parks and Recreation Director Bill DeMaio, I find it necessary to clarify the roles, responsibilities and authority of New Britain’s executive and legislative branches of government.

New Britain City Charter Article Five delineates the authority and duties of the office of Mayor and specifically Section 5-3(a) states, “It shall be the duty of the Mayor to: cause laws and Ordinances to be executed and enforced and to conserve the peace within the City and to be responsible for the good order of efficient government of the City.” In this capacity, the Mayor is responsible for the day to day operations of city government which is done through department heads that report directly to the Mayor.

The roles and responsibilities of the Common Council are put forth in Article Four of the City Charter. If you would take some time to read it, you would see that nowhere does it indicate that an individual Council member has the authority to call a department head and give them an order. Mr. DeMaio or any department head is certainly ready, willing and able to answer any questions you have on operational issues, but he does not need to clear his actions with you before carrying out his duties which clearly fall under the executive, not the legislative branch of city government.

To specifically address your concerns on the work being done at the Stanley Golf Course, as with any change in tenant, there is minor maintenance and repair work that needs to be done before the new tenant takes possession of the premises. This is what is occurring and does not rise to the level of capital improvements as outlined in the lease between the City and Jordan Caterers that was approved by the Common Council.

Furthermore, I am dismayed at your lack of common courtesy and hostile demeanor when dealing with city employees. Department heads are professionals who are trying to carry out their duties as best they can. They do not deserve to be put in the middle of partisan political agendas and I would ask that your future interactions with them be respectful and mindful of the separation of powers between the legislative and executive branches of government as discussed above. While they are obligated to answer your questions and provide public records, they do not have to endure bullying and strong arm tactics.

In closing, I would like to take this opportunity to caution you and your fellow alder persons regarding the adverse consequences of continued blurring of the lines between the authority of the Mayor and the Council. New Britain City Charter Section 5-7 provides penalties to any person who “. . . shall hinder or obstruct the Mayor in the execution of the duties of office . . . “It would seem in these tough economic times for our country, state and city, all government officials have difficult tasks ahead of them. I would suggest you turn your attention to your job and allow me and my administration to do ours.

Timothy T. Stewart
Mayor, City of New Britain

Cc: Member of the Common Council
Department Heads
January 28, 2009 2:47 PM

Anonymous said...

Given Mayor Stewart's past run- ins with the city council we thought the mayor's letter was extremely mild, well thought out and muted.

Now can we digest Alderman Gerratana's comments of tenor and content and lack of common courtesy and hostile demeanor and the messages Gerratana left for Mr. DeMaio? Then you the New Britain public can decide who's telling the truth...Mr. Rick Guinness.

Anonymous said...

The majority of the Common Council are hostile to Mayor Stewart and if you've ever attended or watched a Council meeting that is very clear. We can only imagine what payola Mr. Sherwood been giving to Rick Guinness, since he marches to the beat of their drummer.

Remember folks, it's an 2009 election year and the NB liberal dems are desperate to regain what they see as their rightful place in City Hall.

Anonymous said...

New Britain: Rock'n Boll City.

Wow... That Rick Guinness Video must have been embarrassing for the Award Winning Reporter Rick Guinness. Talk about making an fool of ones self. Now we know why he's not at The Herald anymore.

Too bad. He was a great tool and reporter for the Democrats in New Britain.

Anonymous said...

New Britain: Mr.Guinness YouTube Video of Rock'n Roll City...Who - What - Where - Why - How.


vinnie vedercci said...

The only thing that is embarrassing is Mayor Stewarts mouth.He is out of control most of the time!!!!!!!!City Hall is not a Firehouse Timmy

richard said...

You are way too selective about whose comments you post on your little blog.
You let a bunch of people tear me up and you don't publish my response.
Then you have a headline that mentions my article and my name, but you dont show the article.
Come on. Whenever you did something newsworthy, no matter how ridiculous it was, I gave you a fair shake.
Be a man and have some balance.
Isn't that what every one is accusing me of?
Rick Guinness

Anonymous said...

Wow, I checked him out on You Tube and although I knew he was a far out lefty, I was surprised to find he was an old Hippy too.


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