I have been in the waste management business for 45 years. Our business is not for the thin-skinned. People say all sorts of things about you. Some of those things are reasonable opinions based on real concerns about the best way to manage waste. Many of those things are founded on simple misinformation. Some, however, are nothing less than malicious lies intended to do real harm.
Even being in an industry that can provoke strong public opinion, it has been rare in my career that I have witnessed someone do or say something that crosses the line that separates civility from viciousness. And until now I have never experienced the kind of sustained, malicious attack on our company that Jon Swan of Dalton has carried out for nearly a year.
Since last year, Swan has repeatedly accused us, among other things, of criminal conduct, of “predatory” and “profiteering” practices, of harming the environment, of collapsing the Asian market for recyclables, and of “scamming” the elderly. All of these accusations are false and are part of what Swan has described as a “war” on our company.
On April 7, though, Swan took his maliciousness to another level when he created and posted on the Internet a video portraying me as Adolph Hitler and Casella employees and other private citizens as Nazis. Yes, Nazis.