Market Basket crisis is over, but Artie T and his disciples may have lost by winning

28 Aug

By Bob Croce, EOP Publisher

Can you actually lose by winning? Well, in the case of the workers and the customers of Market Basket, that’s likely the case this morning as you rejoice over the thought of cheap boxes of Kraft Mac & Cheese, and discounts on pork chops.

ArthurTThe walkout and protest by workers and customers the past two months, which began as a heartwarming story, but evolved into an annoyance for the rest of us,  is over.

Arthur T. Demoulas, who someone saw walking on water across the Merrimack River today, bought out his not-so-kissing cousins for $1.5 billion.

Arthur T, who is part messiah, part shameless self-promoter, tells the workers and customers that it’s time to get things back to normal for the supermarket chain that is beloved by the  unwashed masses of eastern Mass., New Hampshire and Maine.

But there’s a problem here, folks.

Arthur T. is now leveraged up the wazoo. He owns Market Basket, but the banks now own him.  Then there’s the shadow of the  gigantic losses incurred during the walkout. Market Basket lost, by some estimates, almost half a billion dollars.

And now, ole Artie has to hope that customers come back at a rate that will allow him to keep up with those pesky covenants established by those ornery bankers.

It’s a reality that even a freshman in business school can understand.

I have no doubt that Market Basket will go on, and even thrive for a while. But it will never be the same. Get ready for a big rise in the cost of your Hamburger Helper.

As for the workers, who put their families’ survival in the balance to blindly follow this guy, you probably would have been better off working for the cousins who took things over in the first place. Sure, under the previous management, you might have lost some benefits.  But now, with the highly leveraged Artie T as your commander, it’s likely you’ll lose a lot more while this guy attempts to pay back what he owes.

The only true winner here today are people like me. At least now I can go back to enjoying my shopping experience at MY store, the Hannaford in West Peabody without getting stuck in line with Market Basket “refugees.” Goodbye to the screaming kids, annoying grannies who like to pinch the produce, and moms who look like they’re training to become sumo wrestlers. Back to Middleton with you unwashed masses.

Potential catastrophe averted in Presidential Heights fire

27 Aug

By Bob Croce, EOP Publisher

 

More details will emerge here, but The Eye has learned that the fire at 13 Madison Ave in West Peabody last night was no ordinary garage fire. Turns out that the owner of the property was likely storing a large amount of chemicals in the structure as part of a swimming pool service company.

FF

The fire caused a strong odor, and a series of small, but frightening explosions before the Peabody Fire Department arrived.

 

Were it not for an outstanding job by the PFD, this could have spread to nearby homes, resulted in major property loss, and perhaps injuries to residents living in this Presidential Heights neighborhood.

 

“You could see the black smoke and the smell was really bad,” a neighborhood resident told us this morning. “There were a few explosions as well. It was very frightening.”

 

According to city records, the property is owned by Joseph Carpenito, who also owns Pools Unlimited. On its website, the company lists 13 Madison Ave as its office.

Below is a Google Earth image that shows the location. Note the close proximity of other homes. The large garage that burned is to the back right of the property.

madison

Moulton now has Tierney’s attention; did the incumbent get caught flat-footed?

26 Aug

By Bob Croce, EOP Publisher

As the race to become the Democratic nominee for Congress in the 6th District gets more interesting by the day, North Shore political pundits start to wonder if maybe incumbent John Tierney and his team got more than a little complement following some rosy polling data last spring.

Suddenly, incumbent John Tierney (right) can't simply ignore challenger Seth Moulton

Suddenly, incumbent John Tierney (right) can’t simply ignore Democratic challenger Seth Moulton

At the time, an internal campaign poll showed the incumbent leading challenger Seth Moulton by 47 percentage points, with just 20 percent undecided. It looked like the Tierney campaign could start spending its dry powder on “evil Republican” fundraising emails aimed at a November re-match against Richard Tisei, who lost to the incumbent by just one point two years ago.

Fast forward to today. Moulton, a Salem businessman with three degrees from Harvard and a resume that includes four combat tours in Iraq as a Marine captain, is hard-charging toward the Sept. 9th primary. He’s spending more than a million dollars on mail pieces and TV commercials, and at this point has all of the momentum.

The Moulton TV ads are clearly working, and this morning the Tierney camp was hit with some further “shock and awe” when the Boston Herald endorsed Moulton, writing “Tierney continues to run his stealth campaign, and we continue to be amazed that anyone would vote for him when there exists in Seth Moulton a smart, fresh-faced alternative.”

So what happened here? Did Team Tierney get caught flat-footed and all giddy following that April poll? Or, was it simply some of that legendary Tierney arrogance that allowed Moulton to make it a race.  Certainly, Tierney himself didn’t take Moulton seriously following that poll, and now watches in horror as Captain Seth races up from behind.

Whether Tierney will end up the Democrats’ version of Eric Cantor, still remains to be seen.

Moulton’s message is clearly resonating with Democrats, who are looking for new, bright leadership, and are fed up with the Pelosi Gang in Washington. But the question is whether there are enough of these type of pragmatic, centrist (and progressive) Democrats to overcome Tierney forces that are made up of the Tierney toadies who infest the Democratic city and town committees across the 6th District.

We shall see if Mr. Clean Marine can come all of the way back here, but at this point one thing is definitely clear:

Seth Moulton now has John Tierney’s attention.

‘Team Tierney’ proud of association with Nancy Pelosi and Barney Frank

26 Aug

TierneyBy Bob Croce, EOP Publisher

At first, I thought this must be a joke. Perhaps, even, another one of those usually funny parodies by the fake news site The Onion.

But it wasn’t, and now I wonder if it’s about time that “Team Tierney” fired the person who writes these utterly laughable fundraising emails. Is the Committee to Re-Elect John Tierney to Congress serious here?

Do they really think that attaching their guy to two or the most-notorious and unpopular members of Congress in the history of our Republic is good strategy?

Nancy Pelosi and Barney Frank?  Are they saying Tierney is cut from the same cloth of politicians who are so far left partisan, so divisive that each could be poster children for our highly dysfunctional government? (Click on the photo to check it out for yourself).

Who’s going to endorse Tierney next?

Al Sharpton?

How about Bill Ayers?

Although I do realize that these emails are mainly meant to squeeze money out of lefty loons and those with plenty of cash left on their EBT cards, to those of us in the mainstream (e.g., the real working classes), this sort of thing makes us wish we had more aggressive SPAM filters.

It also makes many mainstream Democrats wonder where they can donate to Tierney’s Democratic challenger Seth Moulton, or even Republican challenger Richard Tisei.

Speaking of Tisei, he too was the subject of another laughable Tierney campaign email that begged for money. Earlier this year, many of us received a Tierney message claiming that Richard Tisei was in cahoots and total agreement with some right wing members of Congress, who are vehemently anti-gay and anti-same-sex marriage.

Only problem with that particular garbage email was that  Tisei is gay and  married.

You just can’t make this stuff up!

Things getting interesting (and close) in race between Moulton and Tierney in the 6th Congressional District

20 Aug

By Bob Croce, EOP Publisher

We’re suddenly getting an answer to when  the Seth Moulton for Congress campaign will begin it’s frontal assault. After pacing incumbent John Tierney for more than a year when it comes to fundraising, the Moulton campaign is suddenly using a barrage to get its message of change out to those who will vote in the Sept. 9th Democratic Primary.

I’ve received no fewer than four, glossy  mail pieces from the Moulton campaign in the past week, and lawn signs are popping up all over Peabody and elsewhere in the 6th District. And now,  Moulton TV ads are starting to inundate the local airwaves.

The full-court press is on, and no doubt the polls are tightening up. Back in the spring, Tierney’s internal polling gave him a large lead over Moulton, but we suspect any day now we’ll be hearing about an independent  poll showing that the embattled Congressman might actually be “on the ropes” in his battle against Moulton.

Either way, it’s shaping up to be a difficult campaign season for Tierney, who — if he survives Sept. 9th’s primary —  will need to deal with Republican Richard Tisei. And Tisei came within a hair of defeating Tierney two years ago. It’s no wonder that many national pundits have deemed Tierney as being one of the most-vulnerable incumbents this Congressional election cycle.

For those who really love the game of politics … this is getting very interesting! Here’s one of Seth Moulton’s latest TV ads:

Best wishes on a fast recovery for Councilor At-Large Anne Manning-Martin

18 Aug

By Bob Croce, EOP Publisher

Councilor Anne Manning-Martin

Councilor At-Large Anne Manning-Martin

Over the years, we’ve been friends and foes, agreed on some issues, disagreed on many others. But one thing I will always say or write is that Anne Manning-Martin always votes in the best interests of those residents she serves as a councilor at-large.

So, with that, I just wanted to wish Anne a speedy recovery from major back surgery, and hope that she’s back doing the business of the people of Peabody soon as possible.

After all, let’s face it, there are only two current Peabody City Councilors who are always on the side of the people they represent: Ward 6 Councilor Barry Sinewitz, and Anne.

By the way, the back surgery Manning-Martin underwent, was no minor matter.

“I really wasn’t supposed to walk again. It was kind of a Hail Mary operation,” Manning-Martin told the Salem News this week. “I just consider myself lucky and blessed.”

And Peabody residents will be lucky to have her back in there fighting for them again real soon.

Dunne accepts offer to appear on ‘You Make The Call,’ Moutsoulas declines

18 Aug

By Bob Croce, EOP Publisher

Will talk to voters on "You Make The Ca;;" on Aug. 27th

Beverley Dunne: Will talk to voters on “You Make The Call” on Aug. 27th

The intention was to conduct a forum between the two Democratic candidates for Peabody’s State Rep in the 12th Essex District. But it looks like just one will accept the invitation to speak to Peabody residents on the “You Make The Call” cable access show on Wednesday, Aug. 27th.

School Committee member Beverley Griffin Dunne has accepted the invitation to talk to Peabody residents, while Ward 3 Councilor Jim Moutsoulas declined because of what he called conflicting engagements.

Although we’ll still welcome Moutsoulas on the show, should he change his mind, right now it looks like the entire hour (8-9 p.m., on PAT Ch. 99) will be spent talking exclusively with Dunne, who is making her second run at the 12th District seat,currently held by Republican Leah Cole.

We also plan to post a video of the Aug. 27th show here on The Eye, and on Facebook.

Dunne and Moutsoulas will square off in the Sept. 9th Democratic primary, with the prize being a match up with Cole in November. We also plan to invite the finalists for the seat on a future show following the primary.

Please continue passing the word about this opportunity to see and hear from at least one candidate for Peabody State Rep. We’ll be taking your calls that night. We’ve also been asking for questions here in the comments section.

Independent fiscal watchdog group critical of job done by Rep Ted Speliotis

17 Aug

By Bob Croce, EOP Publisher

Call this another public service message from The Eye, but the flyer below came in the mail yesterday from the non-partisan and politically moderate Massachusetts Fiscal Alliance, a watchdog group that rates the performance of all members of the Massachusetts Great and General Court, no matter what their party affiliation. 

This weekend, they brought us this report on State Rep Ted Speliotis, who is being challenged for his 13th Essex District seat in November by Tom Lyons. A big chunk of the 13th Essex covers West Peabody.

Here’s what the MFA presented. I’ll allow our audience to read it and judge for themselves. As always, please let us know what you think in the comments section.

TEDS

FYI: 6th District Congressional candidates square off in debate

15 Aug

By Bob Croce, EOP Publisher

Because of the format and poor production value, you might find this footage from this debate between the 6th District Congressional candidates at Middlesex Community College in Burlington about as exciting as watching a 5-hour game between the Red Sox and the Houston Astros.

But I present it here today anyhow as a public service. It’s just a shame that the format is terrible, and that they also included the two irrelevant lunatic fringe candidates. Let’s face it folks, the Sept. 9th Democratic primary is really only a contest between Marblehead war hero and businessman Seth Moulton, and incumbent Congressman John Tierney.

Also, why are they holding debates in podunk parts of the district?  I mean, who goes to Burlington for anything other than to visit a mall?

You can click on this link, or the image below to watch and read about the full debate:

debate (2)

State Rep Democratic candidates invited to debate on ‘You Make The Call’

14 Aug

By Eye on Peabody

Dunne

Beverley Dunne

Jim Moutsoulas

Jim Moutsoulas

“You Make The Call,” Peabody’s longest-running public access cable show on local politics, is inviting the two Democratic candidates for State Rep in the 12th Essex District to debate the issues live on Wednesday, Aug. 27th, 8-9 p.m. on PAT Ch. 99.

YMTC co-host Bob Croce will moderate the forum between School Committee member Beverley Dunne, and Ward 3 Councilor James “Demo” Moutsoulas, who will square off in the Sept. 9th Democratic primary, with the winner facing Republican incumbent Leah Cole in November’s final election.

The format for the forum will include calls from the viewing audience.

We’re also soliciting questions from our Eye on Peabody audience, so please use the comments section to let us know what’s on your mind.

We’ll have more details here as they become available.

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