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Alyce Maragus

Business Owners Alert
By Alyce Maragus
Jan 27, 2008 - 8:07:31 PM

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As if the business atmosphere here in Millinocket hasn't been tough enough for our local business owners, it has now accelerated.

I am asking each and every area merchant to embrace a neutral stand in this political fiasco that has caused so much dissention in our town.

With MAGIC's application to the FCC in order to set up its own radio station, the owner of our local station has had no other choice but to enter into the fray in an effort to retain his business. This has reportedly resulted in a few businesses pulling their advertisments.

Anyway you look at it, this represents a "boycott" of a local business and is occurring at a time when all of our local business owners should be sticking together and working toward a common goal. That goal is SURVIVAL!

First let's clear the air about what MAGIC was supposed to accomplish. Unless my understanding is incorrect, MAGIC was created to assist businesses to either set up or expand their operations. At least that is what we were told.

Take a closer look. MAGIC has had little success in either area and instead they are now entering into a competition with an already established business that has served us for many, many years.

Next, let's examine just how you business owners would react if MAGIC decided to go into the supermarket, small variety store or hardware business. And then suppose MAGIC's competition caused you to close your doors.

Don't think it could happen? Well maybe not, but if it could happen to WSYY, why not to your business?

I find it difficult to believe that one person (Polstein) or one organization (MAGIC) can instill that much fear and so intimidate you that you allow them to hold you hostage especially since they have done little to help the area.

It is all well and good to show loyalty to your customers, including Polstein, McLean and MAGIC, but shouldn't that same loyalty apply to ALL of your customers.

Two town referendums have proven the majority of our voters do not support MAGIC or its funding.

What happens if those local people decide to withhold their support of your business? Can your business still survive? Do you really believe Polstein, McLean or MAGIC have your best interest in mind or that they are concerned with your survival?

Having been involved in this political tug-of-war for over seven years, I truly don't think they care about YOU just as long as they can continue to line their own pockets.

Having expressed my opinion, I have also tried to devise a compromise that would accomodate both sides of this issue. This is what I have come up with. Rather than "boycotting" WSYY (a tactic that Polstein railed against when he incorrectly perceived himself to be a target), why not request that your ads be placed at a time other than when Mr. Talbott is on the air. There are still twenty-one other available hours to advertise your business without antagonizing your local clientele. Why then would you continue to "cut off your nose to spite your face"?

Please give some consideraation to my suggestion.

After all it is "YOUR" business that is at stake - not that of Polstein, McLean or MAGIC.

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