November 9, 2007

Tom Christy

I've got a problem with Tom Cristy. You know Tom, he hosts Legislative Journal on LCTV. For us political junkies, his show is sometimes entertaining, sometimes volatile and sometimes worth changing the channel. But that's not where my problem with Christy surfaces.

In his recent GNN column about his FAIR Government group, he made the statement that "since FAIR is non-political, non-editorial and educational in nature, it has no concern with who the particular players are". What complete and utter bullshit.

Firstly, Tom Christy is a die-hard Democrat. He worked for the New York State Assembly for, I believe, 12 years under the Democratic Majority. While he sits there railing elected officials for their actions, he conveniently forgets to mention that for 12 years, he sucked off the public teat. Tom, you had 12 years to make a difference, and did nothing to make New York State a better place to live and work. You were a political appointee. I guess while you're getting that paycheck from the taxpayers of this state, the dysfunction is okay. Amazingly hypocritical.

Secondly, in regards to FAIR being "non-political" and "non-editorial", I cannot even begin to comprehend how he could make such a statement. He has become so overtly political, alienating anyone and everyone along the way, that he is having serious trouble getting guests on his show. County Manager Greg Lewis, possibly the least political person in Niagara County's government, will not go on Christy's show. By the way, Christy recently stated that Lewis is no longer welcome on his show, insinuating that he, Christy, made the decision. That is an absolute lie. Lewis informed Christy that he will no longer appear on the show via email. I am attempting to get a copy of that email.

His personal attack on a county legislator's father was disgraceful. Apparently management at LCTV agreed, because after the fiasco aired live, it never aired again.

Lastly, I would like to know how the hell this guy can have three hours every Thursday on LCTV, in addition to the numerous reruns all week, to push HIS agenda. In case you did not know it, LCTV is funded by a portion of the cable bill of City and Town of Lockport residents. Yes, if you live in the city or the town, YOU are paying for this blatantly biased pitchman to throw out his personal agenda.

Maybe this is within the rights of LCTV to allow this, maybe it's not. Next week, I will be contacting Town of Lockport Supervisor Marc Smith and Lockport Mayor Michael Tucker to get a copy of their agreement with LCTV. We are going to find out exactly how that portion of my cable bill that funds LCTV is supposed to be allocated.

For the record, LCTV as a whole is a phenomenal organization. They offer an amazingly diverse slate of programming, 95% of which is beneficial to the community. But giving one person three hours a week to pitch his personal agenda crosses the line of serving the community, and it needs to be addressed.


Fat Tony said...

Christy gives the impression that he is non-biased but his the look on his face on election night said it all.

I don't know what happened to him over the last few years, but he went from being a fair, good government type to overtly pushing his own agenda. Maybe it's inevitable that cynicism will catch up to you at some point.

I'm told he began to hate the GOP when he became convinced they were polling to see if he was having any influence on the local political scene and then refused to give him the results.

Given the results in Tuesday's election and the fact the GOP avoids his show in droves, I think we can guess what the poll said.

Pete M said...

I can't believe that my cable bill is funding this crap from Christy. I seriously hope you follow up on the city/town & LCTV agreement. This is ridiculous. Why not give Lou Dobbs or Bill O'Reilly three hours a week to push their agendas? BECAUSE ITS PUBLIC MONEY! Quit using my money to allow this wack job to take up air time that I AM PAYING FOR!

Virtual Unreality said...

It's not only Christy, it's Leffler and US&J editor Tim Marren that also try to disguise their personal beliefs as news. The difference is, Marren and Leffler work for privately owned corporations. Cristy does not.

Actually, I'm not sure Christy works at all. I heard he no longer bartends on Grand Island.

Come to think of it, lets look at what drives the local media market. Leffler, who is a pizza delivery boy, Christy, who is unemployed and Marren, who is what, 25 years-old?

He's the editor of a rinky-dink paper that pays it's employees so poorly, that the best they can hope for is some 25 year-old to take the job. A 25 year-old that has no concept of the real world, despite thinking he actually has some influence over the community.

The same 25 year-old who in essence called Niagara County voters idiots on Wednesday.

Johnny Walker said...

I heard Christy is so desperate for guests that he's trying to resurrect the ghost of Bill Davignon to come on each week.

Anonymous said...

So what is Christy's agenda anyway? Other than hearing himself talk, that is? As far as I can see, Christy is much like Timid Russert, in that he asks a question of his guests, lets them give their own answer and then seldom follows up with any meaningful questions. He also gives time to anyone of any political persuasion and his guest list has been heavily weighted in favor of Republican Majority Caucus members and he seems to fawn over whomever his guest mught happen to be, from Tim Demler to Dennis Virtuoso to Rick Updegrove.

As far as FAIR goes, didn't he partner at the very beginning with Updegrove?

Mr. SA, I wonder if you might not have an agenda by raising this personal attack?

For he most part I find the Christy and his show to be entertaining, informative and a little off center, in that order. The attack here is unfair.

Truth Detector said...

Anonymous is right about Christy when he's interviewing politicians. But when he is able to give his commentary or has Confer and others on his show, they consistenly have piled on people. Christy was downright giddy when Ed McDonald beat Andrea McNutly in the primary.

Now, having said that, I'm surprised at the level of venom in some of these posts.

Are the political opinions of billion dollar businessmen more legitimate than a working stiff? These personal attacks disgust me.

Pacman said...

I happened to watch Tom Christy last night. All I can say is that he is truly an embarrassment to LCTV. He was yelling, screaming, and combative with viewers and even his guest Dennis Virtuoso. At one point, Dennis had to tell Tom to calm down and relax. Can you believe that - the most combative person in the County Legislature is telling the host of Legislative Journal to calm down and relax. There is something wrong with that. A host is suppose to be acting just the opposite it.
And not only that, Mr. Christy went absolutely crazy on a viewer from NT named Carl. I was shocked! Everyone needs to watch his outlandish behavior to see it for yourself - not even Bill O'Reilly or Rush acts like this. A message to LCTV: this type of behavior does not belong on public cable access, let alone during the times when children could be watching.

Sail Away said...

In response to Anonymous, where is the personal attack? I stated that I do not believe that my money should be funding a show for Tom Christy, if he is going to be so blatantly one-sided. There was nothing in there that would be characterized as a "personal attack".

For the record, I have copies of some extremely inflammatory emails from Christy to some other people. At this point I am deciding whether I want to put them out there, because I do not want to jeopardize my sources.

I can assure you, they paint an extremely unpleasant picture of Christy, and highlight his explosive temperment.

They include what can easily be construed as threats against people is they do not appear on his show, and as one target of his anger stated, "borderline harassment" via email for not appearing on his show.

Anonymous said...

SA. Your post includes the following statement:

"Tom, you had 12 years to make a difference, and did nothing to make New York State a better place to live and work. You were a political appointee. I guess while you're getting that paycheck from the taxpayers of this state, the dysfunction is okay. Amazingly hypocritical."

has nothing to do with his conduct of his television show, which seems to be your target. As far as i can tell, how Christy made his living for a number of years in some distant past is irrelevant to any current discussion. At least you don't really make a connection between the two. If public employment somehow indicates an agenda and bias, then perhaps we need to further explore how the public employment of Sklarski, Cerretto, Nemi, Ross, Smolimski, Murgia, Virutoso, Cafarella and a host of other local politicos is affecting their judgment in what they do.

Sail Away said...

You extracted one portion of the paragraph that addresses that portion of the post.

The entire paragraph reads, "Firstly, Tom Christy is a die-hard Democrat. He worked for the New York State Assembly for, I believe, 12 years under the Democratic Majority. While he sits there railing elected officials for their actions, he conveniently forgets to mention that for 12 years, he sucked off the public teat. Tom, you had 12 years to make a difference, and did nothing to make New York State a better place to live and work. You were a political appointee. I guess while you're getting that paycheck from the taxpayers of this state, the dysfunction is okay. Amazingly hypocritical".

The connection is unequivocably made. He sits in that chair, claiming to be politically unbiased, but his work history says differently. Do you honestly believe that because he no longer collects a taxpayer subsidized paycheck from the Dems that he also completely disassociated himself from the party and their beliefs?

I never said "public employment somehow indicates an agenda and bias". I said, he is promoting his personal political agenda with public dollars. That is the issue, plain and simple.

If he wants to go work for WLVL, WBEN or Fox News, then he can say what he wants-they are private corporation. But as long as public dollars are supporting LCTV, he should not be allowed to promote his personal political agenda.

Anonymous said...

The other "Anonymous" stated that "his Christy)guest list has been heavily weighted in favor of Republican Majority Caucus members".

Well, considering that the majority caucus maintains a 14-5 edge, and O'Connor, Kimble and Andrews NEVER go on the show, it's only logical that the guest list would be heavily weighted in favor of the GOP members. It's simple numbers and common sense.

Christy isn't "favoring" the GOP members because he's trying to help them out, that's what he in essence has to choose from.

So come January 1, there will be ONE member of the minority caucus who will even be willing to go on the show.

Twisting the facts to insinuate that Christy is doing the GOP a favor by having them on is misguided at best.

Anonymous said...

Who twisted facts, Anon2? Facts are facts. I never said that Christy has a bias one way or the other nor did I deny that he has a bias. Nor did I state that he is doing anyone a favor. Nor did I state that Chrsity favors anyone in particular, only that his guest list favors Republicans. Whatever the reasons the guest list is what is is, certainly if Christy's motivation is to promote his agenda, then he could simply give less time to Republicans who do not fit in with his agenda as set in stone by virtue of his former employment in the NYS Assembly.

And as far as Christy personally favoring anyone, what I did say is that he "fawns" over most of his guests and seldom challenges them with followup questions.

What I take issue with is that somehow Christy is using the show to *promote* his own bias/views. Yes, he is part of the discussion, but so are other views, positions & biases. And if equal time is the measure, then simply by the make-up of the guest list the "bias" is tilted to views other than Christy's.

As far as public access and the presentation of views, thee are also other channels on the PA menu that are inundated with political types espousing their own political information, rhetoric and propaganda. Also heavily weighted in favor of the local Republicans. Somewhere, somehow your public money is going to support those vanity shows, where is the outrage there?

Not to mention the "Ask the Mayor" and the Lockport Council shows where the actual politicians are permitted to address whatever subject they chose. These shows could be construed as biased by some who don't agree. Should they also be investigated and banned?

Tis a slippery slope that some here are espousing.

Anonymous said...

Anon, let me enlighten you to Christy's agenda. He hates the majority caucus. Got it?

He blames them for everything bad in the county. He absolutely knows that the county portion of our tax bill is miniscule when compared to our school taxes, but still sits there week after week and blames the current majority for having the highest taxes in the country. Anyone who believes that is uneducated or uninformed.

He blames the county Center for Economic Development for an F from the Business Council, but doesnt actually have a clue as to what criteria was used. Nor does he acknowledge that the study was for the period of 1995-2005, not under the watch of the current majority.

Nor does he acknowledge that Niagara County was NEVER contacted by the Biz Council for the county's input on their economic dev. efforts.

He gets a rep from the Biz Council on the show to say, "yes, my study is great", so it must be true.

He also never called a Legislator's father to apologize after verbally assaulting him on the show, after saying he would call to apologize. That proves to me the 1) he is not a man of his word, and 2) he's a coward for not admitting when he's wrong.

As far the GOP having their own show, what time is that on, and how many times a week is it rerun?
By the way, Tucker is the Mayor. I have NEVER seen him talk POLITICS. He talks about issues in the city. If you don't know the difference, hang up now.

Larry S said...

All you have to do to know that Christy hates republicans is to know his following. Swan, Dicky, Snelgrove, Hobel, Lenny, Dan, all GOP haters. He carries the torch for them because without them, he has no following.

Anonymous said...

I agree 100% with what larry s said and likewise if it weren't for the 6 - 10 people who constantly respond to this blog, it wouldn't exist either. I have never had met anyone who didn’t have an opinion about one thing or another, regardless what motivates it. Yes I read this blog, I listen to Tom Christy, Scott Leftler, Bill O’Reilly, Rush Limbaugh, but I do it for entertainment to see how can out BS the other. Anyone who takes any of these blogs for anymore than that is worse than the host. Give Tom Christy 2 hours and George Maziarz 2 hours and we can call it the 4-hour Political Comedy Show. As far as FAIR Government, if you can’t get concerned citizen’s, Republican’s and Democrat’s in the same room for a couple of hours then more is wrong with these counties than we think. I also believe that FAIR used a mediator to keep away from personal attacks.

Anonymous said...

Chrsity "hates" the majority caucus? Wow. When did he say that? I've heard him render some criticsm of the one party rule, but does that constitute hate? I think, and I could be wrong, that if Chrsity promotes any agenda its that he would like to see more openness and accountability in government.

And since I do not know of what TC might have said about someone's father, I can't comment one way or the other. It would be nice if someone offered some specifics.

Anonymous said...

Anon, I think you're living in a dream world. Yes Christy hates the current majority. It was alluded to here how giddy he was on primary night when McNulty lost. he continuously allows personal attacks against them on his show. Leffler called Updegrove stupid and a liar, with no comprehension of the issue whatsoever. For the record, any who does not believe that the tax levy can go up while the tax rate goes down should not be discussing the issue, because it's a very, very simple concept.

But back to the issue. Christy has verbally assaulted people who disagree with him, and those that defend the majority. His hatred is blatantly obvious.
Again, this issue is not about leffler, Oreilly, or Rush-they work for PRIVATE corporations. Christy is using PUBLIC funds to push his agenda. Please understand the difference.

Anonymous said...

Like it was said before, split the time between Tom (the Dems) and George (the reps), but then again if it were fair you wouldn't have anything to complain about!

Anonymous said...

Something has been driving me crazy. I want to know why LCTV allows someone who lives in Erie County to host the Niagara County Legislative Journal program. Tom himself often acknowledges that he can't even vote for our Legislators, yet has a lot to say about them. And there seems to be alot more problems in Erie County for Tom to deal with (in his home county) than here in Niagara County. So knowing that he doesn't even live in our county, why does he do it? Something just does not make sense. It defies logic. It would be like me going to Toronto and hosting a show on the Maple Leafs. I would have no business or interest in talking about the Maple Leafs, my interests should lie in my own backyard with the Sabres. It's time that Legislative Journal has a host again from Niagara County. I am tired of outside interests dominating the debate within our borders.

Pete M said...

The bigger question is how has the Lockport Cable Commission and LCTV Board of Directors completely lost control of this station. The Commission is responsible for the content of this show.

More importantly, the station is LOCKPORT Cable Television. Not Erie County TV, not even Niagara County TV, but Lockport TV. The station exists because the city and town of Lockport fund the station.

The focus of this station is supposed to be LOCKPORT. Asking why this one show is hosted by an Erie County guy is the tip of the iceberg of problems at LCTV.

It's time the Commission and Board take action. There are enough boards and committees around here with nothing but resume padders. Do what you were appointed to do or get off.

Anonymous said...

Didn't Tom Christy promise to open all levels of government with FAIR Government and analyze how our tax dollars are being spent by our school districts, county, cities, authorities etc.?? Grade: F!

If other municipalities are utilizing LCTV- from Amherst to Niagara Falls- why are they not asked to contribute??

Frank DeGeorge said...

As a Lockport resident, I want to know if this is costing me anything. LCTV used to be about our communities and know you've got a putz like Christy driving his own county and really statewide agenda on a government channel that's supposed to be about Lockport.

I want to know why the LCTV board has essentially turned over our government channel to a political operative with an agenda like Christy.