As I was having dinner this evening with my sons, we were discussing the contents of the Committee of the Whole Meeting Minutes for February 27, 2006. Of particular note and what my boys found deeply offensive was the statement of Mr. Santulli that 'freedom of speech is a wonderful thing, but when month after month people have come before the Legislature and made claims-claims not with any factual basis-it is hard to know who to believe.'
My eleven year old said 'it stinks that the ones telling the lies will be harder to defeat because they don't obey the boundaries of truth and honesty' they can make up anything they want. Mom, I just know there's no way you would go there and say stuff that wasn't true.' My nineteen year old registered voter, who cooked the entire meal we were consuming, said that 'in this case, it is not about free speech: If you are there saying that you are presenting facts, and I know that what you are presenting are nothing but facts, they can be easily verified or disproved. This whole scenario is like my high school chemistry class' if you have a hypothesis, you have to have experimentation and documentation. When you complete your experiment, and there's a question about analysis and results, then you can go back through your data and check everything to either prove or disprove your argument. It's easy for people like Mr. Santulli to disagree with someone else's experiment, but what evidence does he offer to back up his claims that your claims have no basis in fact...anyone can make claims but what matters is what's provable and not provable. He needs a follow-up statement that should list in detail all the things that he believes you've said are false.'
So I am looking forward to this detailed list of all the false claims that myself and other members of the organization are supposed to have made here these last nine months. I have been quoted in the Star-Gazette: 'Every man has a right to his opinion, but no man has a right to be wrong in his facts' (as attributed to Bernard M. Baruch). Members of RFPLC (myself included) have been very careful to document our comments to you because we are in the unfortunate position of having to. I cannot fathom coming here and uttering in public things that are not absolutely true and accurate to the best of my ability to research them. Ask my family how many countless hours, ask our group's treasurer how many countless dollars we have spent obtaining factual information to present to you in this forum and in the press and in the public and in the court.
I cannot even continue talking to you about this because I am so overwhelmingly insulted, disgusted, and disappointed that people who are in this chamber solely to be servants of the public seem to have nothing but contempt for our efforts at participating in a process and an institution that exists solely for our benefit.
'A statement based on nothing is an opinion. A statement based on facts is the truth. It is much easier to disagree than to disprove.'
~Robert William Scott Stroman
Casella held a public meeting and announced the presence of a chemical in the testing well at the landfill that was in exceedance of DEC standards...