Paladino, Buffalo Bully
thinks he's in the Soprano family
"I'm just Joe Citizen," Carl
Paladino kept repeating last week. "I'm just your everyday guy." This
is part of the
Republican candidate for governor's explanation for why he got so hot
with a New York Post reporter whom he
offered to take "out" if his paper tried again to snap photos of his
10-year-old daughter, whose mother is someone
other than his wife.
The story comes to us courtesy of
the National Labor Relations Board, one of Paladino's and his
favorite agencies. But whatever you think of the NLRB, you have to
admit it keeps meticulous records, and in the case
of Ellicott Square Development Corporation and Service Employees Local
200C, it issued an 18-page report of its findings.
The report details an incident that began in June 1994, when Paladino
summoned a veteran janitor named Michael Walden,
who worked in Ellicott Square, Paladino's flagship office building in
downtown Buffalo. The record shows that the city's
largest commercial landlord was irate at some news he'd heard: Walden's
mother-in-law was telling people she wanted to
give the landlord "a piece of her mind."
Her alleged reason for wanting to tell him off was that Paladino had
declined to pay Walden when he was out on jury duty.
Company policy was not to pay for this public service, and neither the
union contract nor state law covered late-shift
workers like Walden. But it was widely known that some employees were
reimbursed anyway, and Walden's mother-in-law
was steamed that he wasn't getting the same courtesy.
The record shows that Paladino began with a loud bark: "Who the fuck is
your mother-in-law?" he said.
Walden told him. The employer then asked why she was going around
saying she wanted to give the boss a piece
of her mind. Walden said he had no idea. As far as he was concerned, he
added, the jury matter was settled.
The report continues: "Paladino then asked Walden whether his
mother-in-law and his wife ran his life, and whether
he can stand on his own two feet. The janitor replied that, yes, he
could stand on his own two feet, and his wife and
his mother-in-law do not run his life."
Paladino also asked if Walden thought his wife and mother-in-law "would
have an effect on his work, and whether
Paladino was going to get 100 percent work from Walden."
"I guess," the janitor replied. Paladino persisted. "Yes or no," he
demanded. "Yes," his employee finally replied.
Paladino told Walden to tell his mother-in-law to "mind her own
business." He then asked a few questions about
the union before telling the janitor he could go.
You would think this might be enough of a labor-management workout for
one day, but the boss was eager to get to
the bottom of this threat to his authority. He next summoned Walden's
wife, who worked as an office cleaner in another
Paladino building nearby. The Service Employees was also recognized as
the union there, but Paladino had refused to
sign a contract. The union had recently made Lisa Walden a shop
steward, another annoyance to the boss.
When she arrived, he grilled Lisa about her mother's attitude. The
daughter told him the same thing as her husband:
She had no idea what he was talking about.
There was some dispute about the rest of the discussion, but it was
agreed that Lisa Walden had the temerity to ask
Paladino why he had denied her a recent pay hike awarded other
cleaners, a raise of all of 15 cents an hour. Paladino
responded that she hadn't been working hard enough and that he
suspected her of having faked a recent injury.
Paladino was also heard telling his employee that he was the boss and
she would do as he said. And at that point,
Lisa Walden began to cry.
So, he thinks he's Tony Soprano but maybe he's more Leona Helmsley.
I haven't seen any polls lately -
is this clown really going to beat Andrew Cuomo?
<>Is New York going to do what
Elect a goof as Governor just so they can watch the freak show?
Back to Bartcop.com