Eating the cubs, Binghamton-style

It is said that when a male lion takes over the pride of another male lion, he kills the older males cubs ensuring that his own genes are carried forward. Evidently something similar happens in the Binghamton mayor’s office. When newly-elected Republican Rich David took office he set about undoing as many as possible of the good things done by his predecessor—symbolically eating Matt Ryan’s cubs, as it were. To start with he fired from city advisory boards prominent local business owners suspected of Democratic leanings. Then he put on the market a small city park much hated by Republicans because the former mayor allowed Occupy Binghamton to occupy it. And now Mayor David has declared the Big Splash Sustainability Fair unwelcome at Recreation Park where it has been held every Memorial Day weekend since 2011. The rationale given by His Honor for the last minute summary cancellation of the fair’s permit is that it will conflict with families wishing to use the park on its opening weekend. The real reason is political and brutish. The fair began as an anti-fracking event endorsed by then-mayor Ryan. David is repaying the largess of the gas companies and pro-fracking activists—none of them actual residents of the City of Binghamton—who bankrolled his candidacy. The cost to the city is not trivial. The fair attracts thousands to listen to top local and regional bands and to view the wares of dozens of exhibitors. Rich David has been mayor for only four months but already he is establishing himself as a partisan bully. We can only hope that one of the cubs he sets out to devour will one day turn the tables on him.

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14 Responses to “Eating the cubs, Binghamton-style”


  1. 1 vicfurman May 13, 2014 at 09:54

    I was at all three events and although the bands were good the atmosphere was bad for children to be in. There was pot smoking drinking and vomiting.3 young men where walking around the park with t-shirts that said F_ _k fracking, Mayor Matt Ryan was at the landowners pro gas tent hollering Take that phucking sign down referring to a large sign that showed a picture of the collapsed joint sewage treatment plant with the words “protect our water 500,000 gallons of raw sewage a day go right into our drinking water” Matt Ryans administration was incharge of oversight and ignored engineering warnings. Another thing is who ever wote this article must not ever have been to the Splash in the Park because it never drew thousands of people as it was an anti gas event full of lie’s and propaganda

    • 2 Leo Cotnoir May 13, 2014 at 10:07

      I was not aware that Big Splash was an event for children. As for the structural failure at the Binghamton/Johnson City sewage treatment plant, there is plenty of blame to go around. You can not fairly blame Matt Ryan no matter how deep your irrational hatred of him. JC is an equal partner in the enterprise. Where were its Republican leaders when those decisions were made.

  2. 3 vicfurman May 13, 2014 at 09:56

    awaiting moderation….or censorship?

  3. 5 vicfurman May 13, 2014 at 12:13

    well leo there ya go will the name calling… cya

  4. 7 Frank G. Chernega May 14, 2014 at 09:49

    Ryan was without a doubt the worst mayor Binghamton has ever had. The city disintegrated while he was off every other week to Dimock only to have them boo him out of town. Mayor David, to his credit, after only few months in office is undoing all the damage and neglect brought about by Ryan including the killing of the anti drilling “sustainable” gala event and repairing Riverside Drive which looked worse than the streets of Baghdad after we bombed them back to the stone ages. Leo: love your blog….the smiling blue moose with bug eyes and TWO teeth is a nice touch.

    • 8 Leo Cotnoir May 14, 2014 at 10:56

      Make up your mind. I thought that Juanita Crabb was the worst mayor Binghamton ever had. All in all Ryan did a good job as mayor. The city’s finances are in better shape than when he took office and downtown certainly looks better now with new restaurants and new businesses. And while I know that for the right wing it is the symbol of everything wrong in the world, the roundabout adds a nice anchor to Court Street. I will grant you that he picked some fights that he would have been wise to pass up. I have been told by someone in a position to know that those were done at the urging of Tarik Abdelazim. As for Riverside Drive, it is in rough shape because of increased traffic due to people avoiding the construction at Kamikaze Curve and an unusually harsh winter–neither of which are Ryan’s fault. Why not admit the truth: you and your gasser buddies hate Ryan because he stood up to gas company bullying.

  5. 9 Frank G. Chernega May 14, 2014 at 11:04

    Name a specific example of “gas company bullying” and please name names and dates. Please be careful as you are starting to sound as propagandist as Isaac Silberman – Gorn Goebbels who throws out unsubstantiated, untraceable accusations incessantly. He should run for office the way he seeks out the media who fawns on someone with a bachelor’s from BU in environmental something – or – other. He is a technical incompetent who’s politics are more in line what one sees in NYC and is well paid to demonize farmers and landowners by Citizen Action of NY, a subsidiary of the Democratic Alliance.

    • 10 Leo Cotnoir May 14, 2014 at 11:12

      You’re joking, right? Go back and read the filth that you, Vic, and the rest of the pro-fracking crowd write about anyone who raises concerns about the environmental and social impacts of gas drilling. If that isn’t bullying, I don’t know what is.

      • 11 Frank G. Chernega May 14, 2014 at 11:33

        Leo: You can attribute our attitude and defiance thanks to Gorn, Vera Scroggins, Josh Fox, the Park Foundation, the Heinz Foundation, Yoko Ono, the Rockefellers, and all the rest of the super rich and powerful who will do and say anything and spend millions to keep drilling out of NY to keep land values low so they can continue buying up bankrupt farms for their summer mansions (Yoko Ono, Mark Ruffalo, Dan Rather, Stuart Varney, et al). We will defend ourselves against their incessant propaganda and huge money and power. No one in their right mind would ever say that drilling for gas is perfect. Nothing we engage is perfect and drilling is included. If 30 other states can do it and none have ever stopped for any reason, it must be manageable with proper oversight.

      • 12 Leo Cotnoir May 14, 2014 at 11:56

        Perhaps fracking could be done cleanly and safely but thus far the gas companies have demonstrated a complete inability–or unwillingness–to do so. They leak so much methane that replacing coal with natural gas actually increases the net greenhouse gas in the atmosphere. The practice of disposing of fracking fluid in injection wells is well documented as being the cause of damaging earthquakes in a number of states. There is no escaping the very real social costs of a boom and bust industry. Drug use is rampant in areas where drilling is being done and crime rates have soared there. Traffic fatalities have increased dramatically. According to the Associated Press in Pennsylvania counties where fracking is taking place have seen a 23% increase in traffic deaths compared to counties where there is no drilling. And when the gas is gone, local taxpayers are left to clean up the mess. In Wyoming alone, taxpayers are on the hook for tens of millions of dollars to remediate abandoned wells. This is a industry driven by greed abetted by the greed of those like you who woke up one day to learn that you won the hillbilly lottery. You did not earn that windfall and most people in the area really resent your cashing in at our expense.

  6. 13 Frank G. Chernega May 14, 2014 at 13:08

    The methane leakage is addressed by Cathles in this video at 34:00 – http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=xNqXrgOrCNk Seems like the “scientists” who did the study that claims leakage rates are 100 – 1,000 X greater than EPA estimates did the flyover OVER AN AREA WITH MANY COAL MINE VENTS. Now you wonder why we gassers have the attitudes we have? BTW Ingraffea and Howarth were involved in this latest caper as well. They are an embarrassment to what was a great college. I agree with the injection wells…..they must find a way to process the flow back water and the companies are re – using it considerably. Drug use – read the paper recently? Poverty is the biggest driver of drugs.


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