When John MacDonald showed his face (Link), publicly, for the first time, it was in his campaign. To me it was obvious, Sal Lupoli cynically believed he needed his own personal attendant on the Lowell City Council. Over the short span of the 2011 campaign, a broad margin of voters came to see how shallow of a candidate MacDonald was.
There is a small, but intensely driven crew in Lowell, that has wrapped themselves up with JMac, since he has appeared. Since he lost the election, MacDonald has shed his skin a few times. He has embedded himself with the chintzy local media because he saw how easily the Bubble reacted to minor mentions on air or print. He has used that notoriety to shill for his clients and pass off their business machinations as civic betterment.
Admittedly, he has had success. Otherwise, this note wouldn't be written. But, his success is not so much of his own accord. His talent is limited to really one thing. And, this thing he does very well. He dangles riches.
From Day 1 - Square 1, JMac's entire allure was Sal's money. He was Sal's emissary, so the local wannabe Brahmin gathered about, hoping, maybe, Sal would be their investor angel. It's not a dumb idea, really. If you were almost somebody, and you needed a jolt to put you into the strata where the real players dwell, and I don't mean schmoozin' at "Uncle" Marty's Pavillion Club; glomming on to Sal is better than buying a lottery ticket. But, to get to Sal, you gotta fluff up JMac.
So, today, we have JMac tight with both the WCAP share holders and Jim Campanini. He has been tapped to provide input on mayor Elliott's E.D. task force and is buddy buddy with the local Chamber of Commerce and the Convention and Visitors Bureau. On his radio show, we had the brand spanking new City Manager explain the new order, while yucking it up.
Let me be clear, I could care less about any of this from a personal monetary position. I have ZERO skin in this game.
But, some of you do.
I catalog this activity because it is my hobby. I love to study civics. Especially, how money corrupts civics. Being new to Lowell, all the history that transpired was all rolled up in the status quo. It was so tangled up in the incestuous relationship of Lowell, it is near impossible to really sort out the "over the table folks" from the "under the table" folks, aka "Shady Lowell."
The incursion of Lupoli, through JMac, was a clean strain of entrepreneurial virus. It was easy to spot the 'vector.' And, it is easy to spot the native Lowellians that are eager to play their role as 'Typhoid Mary.' Some are actually pushing and shoving to be that guy.
In a blog, at some point, I advised Lupoli it would be better to 'buy local,' rather than invest in an interloper. It seems, based on the 2011 election results, he was convinced to rethink Lowell. He must have, as the results are improving for him.
- He had state funding for a pedestrian walkway in the pipeline, before the public knew he was taking ownership of the Thorndike Factory. So, Lupoli is connected to our House delegation.
- He has appeared before City Council, patting them on the heads and letting him know he prefers cheerleaders. (I'll dig that clip up, later)
- Many observers are convinced that Lupoli & Friends are behind the recent, rowdy reconsideration of what should happen at the corner of Arcand and Fr. Morissette. Tune in to 980 am, all morning and in sporadic infomercials, you'll here how the power of positive thinking will deliver a better Lowell! (Better for who?) Cheerleaders are positive thinkers, aren't they?
- Lupoli Industries are heavily integrated into Lowell:
I'd wager this last one is intended to take advantage of Lowell's ripe catering business.
Once again, I don't care. But, maybe Mike Lenzi does?
Out with the old and in with the new, eh?!