City of Gardner, Mass. The City of LOVE

GRAVITAS . . . . Fair and Brutal Opinion (Trapped by Facts)

Headshot of Contributing Writer Scott J. Graves
 M the Media Project

About Contributing Journalist Scott J. Graves in his own words

Scott J. Graves, Esq., B.S. Biology, M.S. Pharmacology, J.D. Law – Father, Born-and-Bred Gardnerien-American, Gardner Native of Acadien Heritage, Gardner High School Class of 1982, Gardner Citizen-Voter, Gardner Homeowner/Taxpayer, 30-year Gardner Business Owner, 30-year Gardner Lawyer, former 16-year Gardner City Councillor, former Gardner City Council President, and former Gardner City Solicitor and Head of the City of Gardner Law Department.

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Before we publish Part 2 on the subject of the City Council’s campaign to Gaslight the Citizens of Gardner regarding the subject of the City’s corrosive drinking water and the Coil Scandal, we are taking this little scenic side road.

Our little series has to do with former Councillor Graves’ public records law case.  The one he was forced to file when the City Executive Dept. refused to give him one shred of government information about the decades-long corrosive condition of the Citizens’ drinking water (the Coil Scandal).

The Gardner Citizens, who have no choice but to buy their drinking water from the City of Gardner, were sold corrosive drinking water – for decades.  Most of us who own homes in Gardner, have big mounds in our backyards.  When visitors come over, they ask, “what’s that big mound?”  We tell them.  “That’s my heating coil graveyard.”

To this day, the Gardner Executive Dept. has refused to give one shred of information to the City Council, and to the Citizens, regarding their corrosive drinking water or this Coil Scandal.

Zero information.  It’s a secret.

The Citizens want what?  Information about their corrosive drinking water?  Get lost.

Shut up, and pay.  They are telling you that you don’t need information – that’s bad for you, like playing with matches.

Ignorance is Strength.

Your Rulers tell you to trust them.  They got this.  After all, it’s just your life – where you live.

For all you people who are transfixed on events around the World, or in Washington, D.C., and don’t have a clue what your local government is doing.  Wake up.  You don’t live there.

You live here.  At the local election a few short months ago, only 20% of the registered voters voted.

We get what we deserve.  100%. It’s all on us.  We deserve this.

Trust your City Hall government, go ahead.  When 80% of the registered voters don’t vote, that’s exactly what you’re doing.  “Govern me harder, Daddy.”

When 80% don’t vote, the same old phony, lightweight, partisan, political hacks got right back into office – and keep doing what they always do. Nothing.

Well, not exactly nothing. We do have a new huge sign in Gardner’s newest city “Park” in Downtown.  It is of such simple-yet-deep, zen-like, wisdom, and of such profound oracle-like meaning and inspiration, that you almost feel guilty to be alive when you look at it.


Seriously, what is that, anyway?  If it was in someone’s private yard, I’d say – knock yourself out, good for you. First Amendment, baby.

But, this is the Citizens’ land – this is the Citizens’ property.

Who is the Ruling Class genius and poet laureate who chose this propaganda to speak on behalf of me, and my 21,000 Citizens?

I don’t recall ever getting a choice about what that Citizen-owned “Park” was going to say for the Citizens’ joint message to everyone who comes to our City.

What if we wanted a big “FIGHT” sign?  Or, what about a big sign that says “TRUTH”? How about “LIBERTY.”

No, Mikey – let’s go with LOVE.  OMG . . . faaaaabulous!


To go with the LOVE sign, there are a bunch of propaganda posters pasted on dilapidated and mothballed Downtown buildings that are falling apart.  In between the zombies and tumbleweeds, if you ever find yourself in Downtown (for whatever reason), you can read these Executive Branch propaganda posters.

These posters, like all propaganda paraphernalia does, brags about all the Downtown progress.  You say, “what progress?” Exactly.

Just read the propaganda posters – Downtown “Economic Development” is everywhere, and it’s been going on since Mikey Nicholson got elected – which is coming up on two years now.

It is mystery what “Development” means to this Ruling Class.  I guess it means things like cutting down 90 year-old shade trees (“for safety”), and planting tiny seedlings where the public at large will never enjoy them. Things like taking “imaginative tax” money from the parking meters to feed a self-revolving, self-perpetuating slush fund, or vaporizing historic buildings instead of saving and re-purposing them, or painting cross walks that no one uses, building rotaries to cause accidents, putting up absurd “banners” that no one notices, etc.

To them, it also means destroying forests, and replacing them with a deforested-moonscape in order to put a Human Shit Dump (“HSD”) there instead. Literally, that’s what they’re doing.  And you are paying for it.

They think we are stupid.  Maybe they are right.

Has any new growth, non-Government, structures or space been “Developed” in Downtown during the last 50 years?  If you can find one, was it “developed” without any of our own tax money?  Remember, “tax money” is usually called “grants.”

If you discount the vaporized historic structures, and a gas station or two, where is all this new Development that has been brought to life and vibrancy to Downtown over the past 50 years?

You can’t see it?  Your Rulers tell you it’s everywhere.  Gaslighting and propaganda are kissing cousins.

You don’t know it (because you’re stupid), but what you are seeing is not blight, or the absence of life, or empty store-fronts.  If you had a brain, you’d know that you are seeing “Development.”

In fact, it’s so fabulous that only one word could fairly describe all this “Development.”  LOVE.

Hence, the big sign.

Big Brother says, “we have proof of Development – the posters, the banners!” See, children, this is true “Development.” You wouldn’t have posters unless there was Development.  Proof!  Who needs eyes, when you have . . . LOVE?

In fact, this Development is so faaaaaabulous! that the Ruling Class members are all knocking their Chablis off the bar, elbowing each other in the head in the process of patting themselves on the back.

They even bring in the highest-level political hacks from Beacon Hill to join in on the back patting.  These big-time political operatives roll into Gardner in black Escalades (with light blue license plates), paid for by you, carrying buckets of your tax money.  The big wigs mix with the little wigs, and they all sit around taking selfies, upload their self-congratulatory videos onto each other’s social media accounts, and pat themselves on the backs.

It’s all very touching.  “You’re the best.”  “No, you’re the best.”  “(In unision) No, we’re the best.” “Hahaha.” Just Fabulous. It’s a LOVE-fest in the City of LOVE. Can you say SuperPAC?

We’ve all been hearing the Executive Branch promise us for at least 50 years now – “it’s about to happen, just be patient – it’s all moving west, Gardner’s Downtown will soon be booming with new growth, professional young people, shops, cafes, restaurants, community gardens, businesses, bookstores, museums, the college will come down, you name it.  All of that, and more.

The Plan is easy: Spend money. Spend more money. Get a study. Get another study. Buy a consultant.  Buy another consultant. Spend Money. Wait. Then repeat.  Forever.

It’s like those lunatics who tell you that the world is coming to an end, over and over and over again.  The only thing that happens is that the world doesn’t end.  But, just like the Downtown-obsessed, that doesn’t deter the lunatics from their lunacy – they just keep moving the date further into the future.  “Trust me, it is going to come, and soon.”

It’s time to give up the ghost. The gaslighting is not working.  Let it go.  Change the plan.  Accept the 21stCentury – it’s already a quarter of the way done.  Time to move on from the old Downtown resurgence lunatic fringe and their money pits.

Propaganda is like a boulder rolling down a hill – the momentum doesn’t die easily.

We can’t wait to see the propaganda in store for us for the HSD (Human Shit Dump).

You know – the one where your Ruling Class is spending millions of dollars of your money to obliterate 10 acres of trees in a fragile and beautiful ecosystem, in a city forest and sensitive conservation area.  This area also happens to be, quite perversely, within the Miller’s River/Connecticut River water basin/watershed.

In doing so, our Rulers think it’s a swell idea to entirely ravage and destroy an extremely rare and environmentally invaluable (and, ironically, highly-protective) natural construct. A feature called a Glacial Esker – which is around 20,000 years old.

For 20,000 years this treasure existed in peace, and without abuse from humans.  The ancient glacier placed it there.  For a reason.  For 20,000 years it’s acted as an invaluable and irreplaceable part of the ecosystem that thrives in that special area of this huge Earth.  20,000 years later, 7 humans (the Mayor and at least 6 City Councillors) will take it upon themselves to make the decision on behalf of 21,000 other humans who own it, to desecrate, rape, and eliminate our Glacial Esker.  20,000 years.

Why?  “Sacrilege” might not be a strong enough description for replacing that rare 20,000 year-old geological gem with a Human Shit Dump.  Just truck the shit out of here. Don’t ruin the environment.

If you were an alien of supreme intelligence, right off a space ship from the outer galaxy, and the Earthlings in Gardner asked you to point to the worst possible place for a Human Shit Dump (“HSD”) in Gardner, the alien would point to this place. And that’s exactly where your Rulers are putting it.

Get ready for the propaganda.

The Shit Dump signs might not say LOVE, exactly.  They will say something like: “NATURE,” “HAPPY,” “FRESH,” “DEVELOPMENT,” or “PROGRESS.”

You won’t see your Rulers put up signs that actually tell you the truth. No, the signs won’t say “YOU AREN’T GOOD ENOUGH,” “YOU DESERVE THIS,” “YOU FELL ASLEEP,” or “YOU SUCK.”

You certainly won’t see the most truthful sign of all at this Shit Dump – “CAUTION, YOU’RE WALKING ON OUR CONSCIENCE.”

But, whatever you do, don’t try to get any information from your Ruling Class about the Human Shit Dump, and the destruction of the environment that is going to take place to put it here.

This is crazy-thinking – like trying to get information about the Heating Coil Scandal.

Once again, the Ruling Class will tell you to “shut up, and pay.” While they, our betters, sit up on their elite pedestals, and pick the winners and losers – and pat themselves on the backs for hoodwinking an entire Citizenry, and for leaving a legacy cost to our grandchildren that will have them wondering how their ancestors could be so stupid and greedy.

And when a lowly Citizen gets uppity, and thinks he has the brazen temerity to actually request information the Ruling Class has concealed about the Human Shit Dump, or about the Citizens’ corrosive drinking water – he must be put down.

That is literally what happened in the situation we will continue talking about next time – the quest for information about the corrosive drinking water and the Coil Scandal that the Ruling Class conceals at City Hall so no one can see it.

Your former City Councillor tried to get you, the Citizens, that information.  He tried to do this in order to allow you to be informed, and not ignorant, about what your City Rulers are doing behind your backs.  He persisted, and he pushed, and pushed, and pushed for the Citizens’ right to get that information.

But, the Citizens fired him.  The Citizens got rid of him.  The Citizens didn’t re-elect him.  He’s gone.

The Homeowners are standing around with their pockets picked clean, and turned inside out – with a pile of corroded heating coils growing in the backyard. And your Ruling Class at City Hall refuses to tell you why. You had one person in your corner – and you got rid of him.

The final indignity is worse than all that.  Your Rulers are wasting your money to pay for outside “Super Lawyers” (they call themselves that) to stop you (the Citizens) from getting any this critical information about your corrosive drinking water, and the loss of all your heating coils.

That’s like getting a bill in the mail from the City for fixing the pot hole that ruined the front end of your car.  You’re welcome – don’t let it happen again.

But, what do the Citizens do?  They get rid of the one person who went deep into the fight in The Arena for them – and re-install the same old political hacks. “Govern me harder, Daddy.”

Your City Hall Ruling Class is up on their pedestals looking down at you – and laughing at you. They know that you will just do it again – when the Human Shit Dump is about to be jammed down your throats.

Get used to living in the Darkness.  Ignorance is Strength.

Most of all, get ready for the Human Shit Dump.

We get what we deserve – LOVE.


Close-up taken from the Gardner, MA 'Love' sign currently housed in center of the city. White and Orange cut-out signs of each letter in the word love.
Look through the Love sign in downtown Garder, MA and what do you see?  A half-finished parking lot, rear facades in disrepair and not much else.
Close-up taken from the Gardner, MA 'Love' sign currently housed in center of the city. White and Orange cut-out signs of each letter in the word love.
What good are social media meme stunts without substantive economic developent results? We Love Gardner no less than those who do not demand more meaningful and cooperative development.
Exterior full color image of the painted blue and yellow fire hydrant and blue sign outside of the Dept. of Water Management in Gardner, MA.

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