The old methods of keeping the lid on things is being pried open — Coverage of Recchia’s flap about recent Dyker Heights Civic Association “forum” or “debate” shows how Marty Golden Insider Fran Vella Marrone functions as a Golden-Grimm gatekeeper, while posing as neutral “Moderator”
Increasingly, blogs and the social media are chiming-in about Golden — And whether it’s a “drip, drip, drip” or a flood — the impact of social media on Golden’s little world is on the rise
After the first debate at OLA conducted by the BRCC, there has been almost no news about any of the later debates and forums. That’s probably part of the Golden team’s game plan.
One of the ways that Golden and his team of handlers have enabled the Brooklyn State Senator to hold onto his seat in the New York State Senate so tenaciously, is that they have largely controlled the media and the message that gets out about Marty (See this and past blogs’ posts about things like the “Un-Pulitzers” for the Brooklyn Eagle and Home Reporter).
A few days ago, there was a “forum” or a “debate” conducted at the Dyker Heights Civic Association. One of the more significant issues coming out of that “forum” or “debate” was the participation of Fran Vella Marrone, one of State Senator Martin Golden’s long-time insiders, and now on Michael Grimm’s staff, who was acting as the “MODERATOR” of the event (See “Michael Grimm Claims He’ll Serve on Congressional Committee Again” by Will Bredderman, 10/15/14, NY Observer [http://observer.com/2014/10/michael-grimm-claims-hell-serve-on-congressional-committee-again/], see also [@newyorkobserver on Twitter | newyorkobserver on Facebook]).
‘[Domenic Recchia] decided not to attend the event, pointing out that the debate moderator and president of the civic group, Fran Vella-Marrone, works in Mr. Grimm’s Brooklyn office. *** For her part, Ms. Vella-Marrone pointed out that the Dyker Civic debates pre-date her birth, and that her involvement in the organization pre-dates her work for Mr. Grimm. She pointed out that local Democratic Councilman Vincent Gentile has participated in the debates for more than a decade. *** ‘Councilman Gentile, he’s the one that’s debated here more times than anybody else. I think he and anyone else would say that I’m absolutely 100 percent fair, and that when I’m up here I’m president of the Dyker Heights Civic Association and that’s all,’ Ms. Vella-Marrone told the crowd.” However, Councilman Gentile made this observation in the Observer article, “ ‘I have had many sessions here, debates here, and during the debates she has given me equal time. I don’t know what happened with the discussions this time around, I haven’t had a chance to ask, but the fact is her boss is running should be a concern to those who have not experienced this before, have not experienced this process before,’ Mr. Gentile said, noting that a large number of active local Republicans were in the crowd. ‘This is a rally for Michael Grimm.’...”
Another media outlet put its coverage of the flap this way, “ Recchia’s camp stated the refusal to attend the debate [was] due to the fact the person who is running the debate is President [of the Dyker Heights Civic Association] Frances Vella-Marrone, a staffer to Congressman Michael Grimm, and that the event will be a Republican get together. Recchia camp said there are four more other debates and he is ready to match the record of Grimm’s record of failed and embarrassing leadership....” And also covering Grimm’s response, thus: “Speaking to reporters following the debate, Grimm was asked if it was fair to have a debate hosted by one of his staffers. ‘It is absolutely fair,’ he stated. ‘I went to a debate in a senior center that was very left leaning and the person who was in charge of the debate would protest his office regular, but I showed up so he is a coward.’...” [sic] (See “NY11 – Grimm Focuses On Obama, De Blasio As Recchia Skips Out On Another Debate” by Mona Salama, 10/15/14, J*P Updates [http://jpupdates.com/2014/10/15/ny11-grimm-focuses-obama-de-blasio-recchia-skips-another-debate/]).
Interestingly, two reporters that did cover the “forum” or “debate” had next to nothing to say about the fact that State Senate Candidates Jamie Kemmerer and Marty Golden were present and participated. When one is repeatedly confronted by the fact that the dogs almost never bark when it would be bad for State Senator Golden, one has to ask what kind of watchdogs can they be ? This blog and others have pointed out that several stories that were bad for State Senator Golden over the years appear to have been spiked. Also, that columns like Jerry Kassar’s consistently tout his boss’s “accomplishments,” but never mentions the inconsistencies, gaffs and other bad stuff.
Even though Golden and his sycophants are probably quite content with all that (except maybe the photo with Mayor DeBlasio at their “private” meeting at the Bridgeview Diner), those older methods of information and message control are no longer as effective, because of blogs and other social media.
Blogs like this one; the “Golden Watcher” [http://thegoldenwatcher.blogspot.com/]; “Bay Ridge Journal -- The View From My Block” [http://bayridgejournal.blogspot.com/]; and others that are similarly independent have all put out multiple posts that have been critical of State Senator Golden ( in fact, “Bay Ridge Journal...” posted one by Kip today [ Friday, October 17, 2014]).
There are other outlets of/for/in/on social media that have a significant following, and they have carried individual but significantly negative commentary about the Republican-Conservative State Senator from Bay Ridge (See e.g. “Twelve Reasons Why I Won’t Vote for Marty Golden for Senator of Bay Ridge…..” by The Queen, 10/17/14, Queen of the Click [http://queenoftheclick.com/marty-golden-forgets-represents-bay-ridge/]).
The combined effect of these aspects of social media, have eroded the ability of Golden’s handlers to control the news and/or many particulars of bigger news stories that have been adverse to their boss, the State Senator. That might or might not have the effect of bumping up by several points Jamie Kemmerer’s numbers in his lightly funded campaign this year. However, to focus on that would miss a bigger point. Regardless of the result in 2014, the trend of more open discussion of what office holders, like Marty Golden, are really up to will continue both on the blogs and across the rest of social media. Control of both the message and the medium by any crew of insiders is becoming an impossibility.