Lafayette’s Farewell Tour: Lafayette Prepares To Enter The Greater Western New York Region

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The sun rose the morning of Friday, June 3, 1825, at 4:05am local time in Waterford, Pennsylvania.1 Lafayette had two weeks—14 days—to travel 550 miles and visit almost two dozen towns and villages before the June 17th dedication of the Bunker Hill Monument in Boston. He was determined to meet every community he promised to visit. Speed was of the essence.

But he couldn’t show it. At least not in a too obvious way.

Roughly three hours after the break of dawn, at about 7 o’clock, Lafayette’s party left Waterford for the seat of the County, Erie, Pennsylvania.2 Though technically still in the Continue Reading “Lafayette’s Farewell Tour: Lafayette Prepares To Enter The Greater Western New York Region”

It’s Easier For Greater Western New York To Become Its Own State Than For Washington DC To Achieve Statehood

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Greater Western New YorkThere’s a verse in the Bible about it being easier “for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God.” (Matthew 19:24 for those keeping score.) The latest escapades out of the House of Representatives got me thinking about this.

There’s also something about power that brings out the sorrowful worst in people, at once exposing their ego as well as their ignorance. Once again, the House provider fodder for this feeling.

Last Thursday, while you were reading the third part on “The Story of Abraham Parrish,” the House decided it was time for Washington DC to become a state.

No. Seriously. They actually did this.

It won’t go far in the Senate, or so promises Chuck Schumer. We’ll see. Like I said, power Continue Reading “It’s Easier For Greater Western New York To Become Its Own State Than For Washington DC To Achieve Statehood”

First They Came for Our Plastics Bags…

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First they came for our plastic bags, and I did not speak out – because I am but a small voice and could do nothing.

I offer this allusion because Martin Niemöller’s poem remains as profound today as it was when the Lutheran pastor penned his post-war confession in 1946. It’s language of persecution, oppression, and injustice, along with the attendant feelings of shame, regret, and the aura of culpability, ring true today in the Empire State as they once did in the totalitarian morass that immediately succeeded the Weimar Republic.

More on that in a moment. First, a bit of (more) recent history.

By the time Mr. Maguire whispered the word “plastics” into Benjamin Braddock’s attentive, albeit naïve, ear in the 1967 hit movie The Graduate, it had already been two years since Continue Reading “First They Came for Our Plastics Bags…”

5 Reasons Why Splitting From New York Would be a Bonanza for Greater Western New York

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A few weeks ago a Syracuse media outlet published an article denouncing the idea of splitting New York into multiple states. It is recommended that you read that article before reading this one. The article was entitled “5 reasons why splitting New York would be a disaster for Upstate,” by Mark Weiner. It appeared on March 5, 2019 on the website. [The on-line version of this Carosa Commentary contains a live link to that article.]

What follows is meant to mimic Weiner’s article by using the same data and quotes to reach a 180° opposite conclusion. It starts with the very title. Weiner concludes “studies show the split into two states would likely be an economic disaster for Upstate New York, experts say. The region simply depends too heavily on taxes and fees paid by wealthy residents and corporations in New York City and its suburbs.” I’ll present his very same arguments, with very little additional information, and come to a completely Continue Reading “5 Reasons Why Splitting From New York Would be a Bonanza for Greater Western New York”

Sorry, Mr. President, It’s Not “Flee” New York, It’s “Free” Western New York

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If you’re from Greater Western New York, you love it. That makes you part of a long tradition. American patriots felt the same way during the Revolutionary War. In 1779, George Washington dispatched General Sullivan to thwart the British and their Iroquois allies based in Western New York from continuing their lethal terror attacks on the small towns and settlements along the edge of the then New York frontier. When Sullivan’s troops first laid eyes on the beautiful landscape, they immediately knew where they wanted to spend the rest of their lives: Western New York.

Why would you be any different? And yet, living in Western New York too often becomes a burden. Although not as bad as it was decades ago, outsiders continue to disrespect our region. We’ve been the butt of late-night TV jokes. Organizations routinely bypass our bounty, lured by promised riches from others. Even our own state leaders forsake us. We’ve seen this as recently as when the New York-Albany axis decided to use our Continue Reading “Sorry, Mr. President, It’s Not “Flee” New York, It’s “Free” Western New York”

The Night the Grand Old Party Died

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resting-elephant-1-1340299-1280x1156I was sitting in Amtrak’s Metropolitan Lounge at Union Station when it started. By the time I had already boarded the train, it was done.

On the evening of March 11, 2016, thousands of violent agitators marched their way towards downtown Chicago, intent on disrupting a scheduled campaign stop by Donald Trump, the leading candidate of a major American political party. Rumors swirled in advance of this event. It was believed various foreign funded Democrat operatives, along with the same Republican operatives that used this technique successfully in a 2014 Senatorial primary campaign, were working together to stop the Trump campaign appearance.

While it was never confirmed who organized the intimidating show of force, it worked. Large numbers of the Anti-Trump gang had maneuvered themselves into the University of Illinois’s Pavilion. Long before the speech was scheduled to begin, the troublemakers had Continue Reading “The Night the Grand Old Party Died”

New York Governor’s Race: A Corleone Election

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OK, I just watched the debate. Rather, I just listened to the debate. Here’s what I’m convinced of: With all due respect to the minor party candidates, it’s pretty 1947 ink blue family carclear the matter of who will serve as New York State’s next governor comes down to a choice of these two characters:

Sonny Corleone
– or –
Michael Corleone

I guess that would make the sum total of all the candidates Fredo “You’re dead to me” Corleone.

But about the two main characters, the metaphor is so juicy we’ve got to wonder if Coppola isn’t in the wings writing the script. On one hand there’s the crude hot-headed thug whose wild passion constantly gets him in trouble but, in the end, probably will Continue Reading “New York Governor’s Race: A Corleone Election”

Western New York Media Market: Whole Greater than Sum?

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A decade ago, before the financial crisis that opened the first decade of the new millennium, Adelphia Communications, in addition to a cable channel called the Empire Sports Network, owned a radio station with the call letters WNSA. The two worked in tandem and, at least until the falling stock market exposed the Regis family, this modest media juggernaut gained a respectful audience.

Western_New_York_Microphone_300On the cusp of a content driven era, the small cable company had, together with the Buffalo Bills, successfully begun to build connections within a broader Western New York Region. This bigger footprint would include not only Buffalo and Niagara Falls, but also Rochester, Jamestown and several other cities within the roughly seventeen western-most counties of New York State. With a growing national market, Adelphia offered the allure of becoming the new century’s CNN (or at least ESPN). And with its intention to build an impressive headquarters in the state’s Queen City, Buffalo finally had a new hope – one that might bring it to rival Atlanta in cable communications.

But, as it seems to have happened to our region ever since Canada left us no choice but to build the Saint Lawrence Seaway, fate once again dealt a bad hand. Continue Reading “Western New York Media Market: Whole Greater than Sum?”

Day 1 – November 14, 2009 (Sat): Sign Up and Settle In

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Start of Day Twitter Stats: Follow: 0 Followers: 0 Listed: 0

What’s this all about?

Here’s what I did. I actually tried to start a new Twitter using my name. “ChristopherCarosa” had too many characters, so I had to go with “ChrisCarosa” as my username. Having read Joel Comm’s book Twitter Power, I carefully filled out all my profile information.

twitter_power_joel_comm_150Name: Chris Carosa

For my name, I kept “Chris Carosa” just to avoid confusing people. As far as I tell in my internet search, Of all the three-hundred thousand Americans, only three of them can be called “Chris Carosa.” I met the other two – when I was a kid. One is another “Christopher” and the other is a “Christine.” They don’t appear to reside on Twitter.

Location: Mendon, New York

Now the location caused me to think a bit. Most web surfers will have never heard of my town. Still, I am proud of my municipality, having once (hopefully ably) served on its Town Board, so I thought I’d identify it. Furthermore, I figured, since I had the room anyway, I’d spell out the full name of the state. I never served in any elective office for New York State (which probably explains why I still have friends), but I nonetheless have an affinity for the Empire State.


It turns out this Twitter username limit helped me avoid a major mistake. My web-site (which I added to Twitter) is “” and if I had used my full name, my Twitter User Name would not have matched my web-site name. Bewilderment averted.

Bio: Author, speaker, entrepreneur who likes connecting with family, friends and the future and loves Western New York.

My one-line bio proved a bit of a challenge. I’m used to a standard elevator pitch for my business, but this Twitter account isn’t about my business. In fact, being in a highly regulated industry, I’m bending over backward to separate my business activities from my social media activities. So I used a variation on a theme (specifically, Joel Comm’s theme of three). It started as a three and three – what I am and who I want to connect to. I added the “and loves Western New York” when I realized searchers might not know Mendon exists in that region of the state.

Lastly, I added the account to TweetDeck and CoTweet (but not SocialOomph, which I’m determining whether I should continue using.

How many followers do you think I’ll have after 30 days? Click here to enter your guess on my Survey Monkey survey “Chris Carosa’s 30-Day Plan to Dominate Twitter Experiment.” There’s no prize, but the fan who guesses the closest correct number the earliest will “win” and I’ll mention you if you want me to.

Find out today’s results on Day 2 – November 15, 2009 (Sun): Create Your Background Image

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