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Travis Rowley: Parking Tickets- Driving People

Saturday, January 25, 2014


Hey, maybe the unions really stepped in it this time.

Taking some time off from manipulating the local economy in their favor – and thereby completely destroying it – the Cranston police union seems to have been the impetus for a retaliatory issuing of dozens of parking tickets throughout two districts of Cranston last November.

You know, the type of pub-talk and kitchen-table controversy that actually revs the engine of the local voter.

It’s sad, but true: $17 trillion in national debt has nothing on a $25 parking ticket when it comes to electoral politics.

While denying any political motivation, Captain Stephen Antonucci of the Cranston Police Department – who is also the president of the Cranston police union – has admitted to ordering patrolmen to ticket cars throughout the wards represented by City Councilmen Steven Stycos and Paul Archetto, who just happened to vote against a police contract known to be favored by Antonucci’s union.

During the course of two days following the vote, 66 tickets were issued throughout Stycos’ ward while Archetto’s constituents received a total of 62. During the same time period, only 9 tickets were issued throughout the remaining streets of Cranston.

Adding to the suspicion, anonymous sources have told the ACLU that, rather than giving the ticketing order over the department’s radio network, Antonucci delivered it via cell phone.

This adds more weight to the rumor that Captain Antonucci is currently developing an i-Phone app that will enable labor bosses to more efficiently unleash their thugs upon the taxpayers.

In Their Pockets

This latest controversy is not unlike the ObamaCare debacle – Democratic legislation that is now causing millions of average Americans to either receive cancellation notices for their insurance policies, or witness drastic hikes to their premiums and deductibles.

Suddenly, a complex issue concerning one-sixth of the entire US economy – a matter that dwelled within the fog of political bickering for months, forcing busy Americans to cut through arguments over “affordability,” “racism,” “socialism,” free markets,” and “fairness” – is now being boiled down to everyone’s bottom line.

Oh, now I get it. This is going to cost me more!

Just as widely understood is a parking ticket. Everyone gets them. Everyone hates them.

Go right ahead, attempt to articulate to your neighbor the long history of fiscal thuggery committed by organized labor – including all the anti-business regulations and protectionist laws, the forced unionization, the countless lawsuits against the taxpayers, the corrupting connection between elected politicians and public union leaders, and all the economic devastation that has resulted from it. Point to the fact that Rhode Island has been under the strict control of union-Democrats for decades, and that the unmistakable result is a seemingly irrecoverable private sector, a dismal business climate, millions of dollars in unfunded pension liabilities, the highest unemployment rate in the nation, and off-the-chart property taxes. Talk to your neighbor about the bankruptcy of Detroit, and all the alarming similarities that Rhode Island shares with that once-electrifying city.

Presuming your neighbor doesn’t collapse from boredom, he’ll surely recall something he heard about unions sticking up for “the workers” who are always being exploited by “the rich,” “greedy CEOs,” and “evil corporations” – that old Marxist canard; that wicked class warfare; that emotional liberalism that so effectively gets thousands of Rhode Islanders to yank that master lever for the Democratic Party each and every election cycle.

But then go tell your neighbor that organized labor is responsible for those parking tickets last year.

What? The union is responsible for those parking tickets? Those scumbags!

Speaking To Voters

Of course, I mention all of this in the context of an election year. In 2014, Republican politicians shouldn’t shy away from dumbing things down in a manner typically reserved for Democrats.

More Republicans need to acknowledge that people are emotional. That is to say, voters are emotional.

Translation: The candidate who wins the debate doesn’t necessarily win the election.

Republicans need to abandon their naïve idealism. They not only need to learn how to articulate the moral dimension behind a limited government, but also how to be ruthless while remaining truthful.

And not just because it will help them win elections, but because Democrats deserve it.

This is hardly the first time organized labor – empowered and emboldened by the Democratic Party – has “worked to rule.” What happened in Cranston is not an isolated incident. Rather, it is part of the union-Democrats’ culture of political thuggery.

That’s the truth. And Republicans need to know how to say it, and then defend it.

In 2014, when speaking about the people who have made it their mission in life to make as many people believe that Republicans represent greedy racists who hate gays and wage wars on women, the message should be as follows:

Democrats were wrong. Democrats were wrong about ObamaCare. Moreover, Democrats lied about ObamaCare.

In the sixth year of Obama’s presidency, the economy still falters and millions of Americans have dropped out of the workforce. Democrats were wrong to vouch for socialism at the expense of capitalism.

Here in Rhode Island, the primary use of the local economy is to illustrate to other states the devastation that occurs when you allow unions and Democrats to set policy for 70 years. Rhode Island is entirely incapable of rebounding on its own. We are in a life raft, waiting for a national recovery.

Democrats lied. Democrats destroyed. Democrats lied. Democrats destroyed.

Repeat it as often as possible.

Democrats lied. Democrats destroyed. Democrats ticketed your car.

Travis Rowley (TravisRowley.com) is the author of The RI Republican: An Indictment of the Rhode Island Left.


Related Slideshow: Cranston Police Contributions to Allan Fung

Prev Next

Lt. Stephen Antonucci

12 contributions from Vito Antonucci, City of Providence, Public Properties Division, Chepachet RI. Made from 2008-13 total of $825.

  • 6/16/08 $100
  • 7/28/08 $150
  • 7/28/08 $150
  • 8/22/08 $50
  • 8/22/08 $50
  • 9/20/08 $100
  • 9/20/08 $100
  • 3/07/09 $100
  • 5/18/09 $100
  • 9/13/11 $100
  • 9/29/13 $100


8 Contributions from Michelle Antonucci, 60 Pine Ridge Drive, Cranston (PayChex Inc. of EP as employer).  Made from 2008-2013 for $1,060.

  • 6/19/08 $100
  • 8/06/08 $150
  • 8/06/08 $150
  • 9/23/08 $50
  • 9/23/08 $50
  • 4/16/09 $200
  • 10/26/10 $60
  • 10/03/13 $500


2 Contributions from Gail Antonucci, 119 Woodview Drive, Cranston (Homemaker)

  • 6/18/08 $100
  • 5/18/09 $100


contributions from Kevin Antonucci, 70 Garden Hills Drive, Cranston (City of Cranston)

  • 7/28/08 $150
  • 7/28/08 $150
Prev Next

Lt. Alan Loiselle

9 Contributions in name of Alan Loiselle, 20 Eastgate Drive, Warwick (City of Cranston as employer)

  • 6/5/08 $186.83 (In-kind, listed as “Hardware and supplies for headquarters”)
  • 6/16/08 $200
  • 6/23/08 $53.37 (In-kind, see above)
  • 7/28/08 $150
  • 7/31/08 $133.36 (In-kind, “Building materials and supplies”)
  • 5/18/09 $100
  • 9/16/08 $127.12 (In-kind, “Building equipment and supplies”)
  • 8/30/10 $100
  • 10/24/10 $50


1 Contribution from Robert Loiselle, Loiselle Insurance Agency, Pawtucket.

  • 10/29/08 $100


1 Contribution from Martin Loiselle, retired, 180 Potters Ave., Cranston.

  • 6/16/08 $100
Prev Next

Lt. Carl R. Ricci

7 contributions from a Carl R. Ricci, 76 Northview Ave. Cranston (Phred’s Drugs as employer)

  • 8/20/09 $300
  • 8/30/10 $100
  • 10/30/09 $125
  • 2/25/10 $150
  • 2/23/11 $150
  • 2/21/12 $150
  • 2/21/13 $150


Prev Next

Captain Sean Carmody

2 contributions from Sean P. Carmody, 129 Allens Ave. Cranston (City of Cranston employer)

  • 9/21/08 $100
  • 10/08/08 $200

10 contributions from Melissa Augaitis, 10 Basil Crossing, (Employer, Perspectives Corporation)

  • 6/16/08 $200
  • 3/26/09 $100
    2/25/10 $300
    8/30/10 $250
    10/17/10 $200
    2/23/11 $200
    2/29/12 $150
    6/3/13 $250
    6/25/13 $250
    9/29/12 $500

1 contribution from Maureen Carmody, same address, no employer

  • 7/28/08 $100


Prev Next

Chief Marco Palombo

4 Contributions in name of Michelle Palombo, 4 Jennifer Circle, Cranston (homemaker)

  • 9/18/08 $50
  • 9/13/11 $150
  • 6/25/13 $200
  • 7/22/13 $200

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What's wrong with work to rule Travis? Why bother asking, you never defend yourself anyway... Well i'm sure all your neophytes will start chirping in your defense. C'mon ass kissers, answer for the Beaver.

Comment #1 by lupe fiasco on 2014 01 25

I don't see much comparison between ObamaCare and the Cranston tickets. Whether ObamaCare is the best or the worst law ever passed, it was done legally, enacted by the Congress, vetted and approved by the Courts. Chris Christie's Bridgegate, on the other hand, is exactly like the tickets. Unelected government personnel took it upon themselves to secretly abuse the power of their office for private political reasons.

Comment #2 by Kevin McCarthy on 2014 01 25

So, what we're saying here is that some individuals on both sides of the aisles abuse their power, and based on that we should condemn the entire party. I guess because Carceiri supported 38 Studios, that means every Republican in the state supported it and thought it was a great idea. So remember this voters... Republicans lied. Republicans said this would be great for the RI economy. Republicans threw you under the bus and made you pay for this bankrupt company. That sounds about right.

Comment #3 by Phil Paulson on 2014 01 25

Wow, Travis. Did you strain your back contorting to connect Cranston parking tickets to Obamacare? probably not. It's second nature to Fox drunks like you. It's raining outside. Blame Obamacare. My lobster is less than two pounds. Blame Obamacare. My Mercedes is in the shop. That's right--Obamacare.

It's too bad that unions often act stupidly and criminally and hand right wing media thugs their ammunition. But that must be because of Obamacare too.

Comment #4 by John Onamas on 2014 01 25

I must be the only one who understood Rowley's point.

Obamacare is like the parking tickets in the sense that the two issues connect with the voters!!!!!!

Seemed pretty simple to me. I don't know.

Comment #5 by Jeremy Soninjer on 2014 01 25

Folks who parked illegally (probably righties since we all know our laws don't pertain to them) got parking tickets...LOL So for once the cops were doing their job and enforcing our laws. Good work guys.
Parking tickets, increased the cities revenues. unlike the morbidly obese fat-man's bridge closing in New Jersey which cost working folks millions in lost hourly wages, put lives at risk and resulted in less income tax revenue 4 the state and federal government.

The righties play hardball while the cops play softball
Sammy in sunny and warm Arizona

Comment #6 by Sammy Arizona on 2014 01 25

"Republicans need to abandon their naïve idealism. They not only need to learn how to articulate the moral dimension behind a limited government, but also how to be ruthless while remaining truthful.

And not just because it will help them win elections, but because Democrats deserve it."

Wow. Where to begin? Republicans and naive idealism; I'm on the floor laughing hysterically. "The moral dimension behind limited government;" still on the floor hoping I don't have an grand mal seizure.
Oh, and here's the daddy: "how to be ruthless while remaining truthful;" did Idi Amin write this?
And the topper: "And not just because it will help them win elections, but because Democrats deserve it;" I mean, what more can be said, there you have it. Simple soothing sounds from Mr. Rowley, yours for $19.99.

Comment #7 by bill bentley on 2014 01 25

So Sammy Arizona makes a false equivalence between Chris Christie's one-time corruption charge (actually, some staff members who Christie fired) and the ongoing and habitual thuggish tactics of unions.

And Bill simply recites Rowley's column, pretending as if that is a legitimate way to dispute it.

Nice work, guys. So smart. LOL

Comment #8 by Jeremy Soninjer on 2014 01 25

I would ask the question of "how is it captains and lieutenants can belong in the same union as the rank and file police officers and still command them?" Conflict of interest here? If this Captain was not in the union, I am sure this ticket blitz would not had happened.

Comment #9 by Gov- stench on 2014 01 26

Travis -

Judging by the quantity and intensity of ADIO* - Aggression, Dismissal, Insult, & Obfuscation - blog posts, looks as if you've yet again struck a nerve.

Excellent. Shill parrots squawk when the usual suspects are nervous.

When the usual suspects are nervous, society benefits and citizens prosper.

* - ADIO - Aggression, Dismissal, Insult, & Obfuscation, mentioned by thediplomad (Wm. Amselem, US State Dept., Ret), as the type of reply made by third world tinpots to reasonable proposals. The Left is past pluperfect master of the black art.

Comment #10 by paul zecchino on 2014 01 26

Lmao paul, your too funny and almost as silly as Travis.

Comment #11 by lupe fiasco on 2014 01 26

I repeated the quotes because on their own they just seemed incredibly ridiculous hyperbolic statements.

Comment #12 by bill bentley on 2014 01 26

I completely agree with Travis Rowley. People in power will try to abuse their power. Human history provides a steady stream of examples. Our country's founders understood this well and structured American government with checks and balances to keep the power hungry off balance and to limit governmental power.

Rowley is right in saying that huge numbers of citizens don't think at all about government abuse -- until it affects them personally. Maybe they'll wake up when they find they actually cannot keep their current health insurance, or get hit with a tax increase, or get stuck in traffic on a bridge, or get a parking ticket.

Today's socialist big-government Democrats are pushing hard to increase control over citizens, and tax and regulate them harder. Abuse is less random with this party; abuse is part of the tactical plan. And Rowley is right again in saying that Republicans (at least the freedom-minded ones) need to vigorously point out the systematic abuse by Democrats and their allies and demonstrate to average citizens how this affects them.

Comment #13 by Art West on 2014 01 26

"Oh, now I get it. This is going to cost me more!" That's the lofty platitude at the foundation of the Republican strategy?

Comment #14 by bill bentley on 2014 01 26

The parking ticket scandal (ticket-gate) is just another faux right-wing-nut conspiracy, like Obama's phony birth certificate, and the foolish "War on Christmas"

Folks who parked illegally, got tickets.......LOL
(most of these fools were probably conservative rubes, since we all know, that they think that our laws don't pertain to them)

Sammy in Arizona

A video has surfaced in which the conservative "Duck Man" Phil Robertson offers more harsh comments about gays. In the video, Robertson says that Gay folks will receive the "due penalty for their perversions." He goes on to say that they are full of "murder, envy, strife, hatred. They are insolent, arrogant, god-haters. They are heartless. They are faithless. They are senseless. They are ruthless. They invent ways of doing evil."

But he is not judging them..... Remember that...LOL
The "TOLERANT" right proves their true selves again.

Comment #15 by Sammy Arizona on 2014 01 26

I'm agreeing with Sammy Arizona on the point everyone seemed to be missing.

THEY WERE PARKED ILLEGALLY. So for whatever the reason the cops were doing their job and you're complaining about it.

Sammy Arizona you're off base about Chris Christie though. He stated he didn't know about it and fired those responsible.

Resident Obama has fired no one and doesn't know anything about Fast n Furious, Bengazi, IRS targeting right leaning groups, NSA spying, money spent on "Green" companies that went belly up and of course lying about the ACA where you can keep your plan if you like your plan.

Comment #16 by Wuggly Ump on 2014 01 27

Sammy and Wuggly, I'm a little upset that you both are missing the point. The ticketing was political retribution. People were targeted by government due to their policy preferences (not unlike the IRS scandal). Yes, the ticketing was within the confines of the law, but it was an uneven application of the law. I know not everyone is familiar with the concept, but I think Rowley touched on it>>>>This was very similar to a WORK TO RULE effort on behalf of the union. The cops weren't "just doing their job, and we're complaining." That's how the union lawyers spin it when they're caught acting like this. It's very dishonest. If the cops were "just doing their job," the ticketing would have occurred all over the city, not just in those 2 districts.

Comment #17 by Bryan Sullivan on 2014 01 27

Bryan Sullivan Believe me, it wasn't easy to agree with Sammy.

Yes, the cops were most likely targeting those districts as retribution. Were the cops wrong to do this the way they did it? It certainly wasn't the smartest thing to do. Unlike the IRS scandal, those that received tickets were breaking the law.

On the flip side find it interesting that so many residents must have called their council person to complain they got a ticket. For what purpose? To get it "fixed"? If this is true, how many tickets have been fixed? If Council Members are going to just fix tickets, why have cops issue them and why have the law in the first place?

Comment #18 by Wuggly Ump on 2014 01 28


One more multiple part question... If the cops aimed this at the council members, why would the cops think the council members would even find out about the tickets in their district? Do the council members get a report on tickets issued in their district? Or do they regularly "fix" them?

Comment #19 by Wuggly Ump on 2014 01 28

Art West, "Today's socialist big-government Democrats are pushing hard to increase control over citizens, and tax and regulate them harder."

You mean like telling two consenting adults who they can and can't marry?
You mean like forcing women to undergo ultrasounds before getting an abortion?
You mean like forcing doctors to lie to pregnant women about abortions?

Are you talking about those big-government Democrats that are trying to control our citizens and regulate them harder? You're either a hypocrite or a buffoon. Probably both.

Comment #20 by Phil Paulson on 2014 01 29

Thanks, Phil. I'll wear your insult as a badge of honor.

For the record, I'd rather keep abortion legal, and I'm pretty much libertarian on social issues. Freedom first.

Comment #21 by Art West on 2014 01 30

And that's fine, but don't complain about "big government Democrats" when both parties are guilty and intrusive.

Comment #22 by Phil Paulson on 2014 01 30

The police thugs who engaged in this abuse of power should be summarily fired. Reminds me of the union fireman who threatened former Mayor Laffey at a Council meeting. Time for right-to-work, to break the backs of these union thugs, their forced unionization, and their forced dues. No one should be forced to belong to any organization against their will. But it's this unholy alliance of public employee unions and Democrats that has corrupted not only RI but much of the country. FDR was right. Public employtees should have never been allowed to organize, or, if they did, it should have only been on a voluntary basis.

Comment #23 by Kendall Svengalis on 2014 01 30

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