Friday, April 18, 2014

The Houses Of "Everytown"

The world looks differently to you and me than it does to Michael Bloomberg and Shannon Watts.

Unless you live in an exclusive suburb with armed guards at the gate, I doubt your home looks like the array of homes below. It should be noted that I don't begrudge Mr. Bloomberg his money as he earned it by taking an idea for providing financial data and ran with it. That is the American Way and I applaud his entrepreneurship. Shannon Watts took the more old fashioned way and (re)married well to the former CEO of a Wellpoint subsidiary.That, too, is OK...I guess.

Bloomberg's Upper East Side Townhouse
Bloomberg's Long Island Estate
Bloomberg's Bermuda vacation residence
Bloomberg's London apartment in Cadogan Square

Bloomberg's North Salem, NY Farm
Bloomberg's Vail, Co "Mountain Haus" condo

Aerial view of Bloomberg's Wellington, FL horse farm & estate
Watt's Indiana home - street view

When you live in a million dollar plus home in a plush neighborhood, your view of the world is just different. You don't have crime at your doorstep and you really don't have to worry about home invasions. And if you are Mr. Bloomberg, you have your own private armed security detail made up of ex-NYPD cops. I don't know if Mr. Bloomberg provides armed security personnel to Mrs. Watts when she travels around the US on behalf of the Demanding Mommies but I wouldn't be surprised if he did.

However, the populist streak in me is offended about being told that I should support gun control for my own good by people who live in a well-protected environment. Moreover, my liberal arts education makes me cringe at the perversion of the word "safety" by those who really mean prohibition and control by it. If you are going to be for gun control, at least be honest about it, like it was when the Brady Campaign was called Handgun Control, Inc.

When it comes to real gun safety, it is the NRA, the National Shooting Sports Foundation, and other gun rights organizations AND their members who do the grunt work of promoting gun safety. We are the ones running the Eddie Eagle classes, we are the ones teaching kids how to handle a firearm safely at home and at camp, we are the ones who invest our hard-earned money into safes, locks, and other security devices, and we are the ones providing classes to abused spouses so that they can learn how to protect themselves. And we are doing it every day in everytown at the grassroots level.

So my advice for Mr. Bloomberg and Mrs. Watts is that they should stay in their palatial homes and worry more about the next gallery opening, the next society event, or the next cocktail party than how the rest of us in Everytown America provide for our own self-defense. In other words, they should mind their own damn business and leave us in the real grassroots the hell alone.

UPDATE:  Little did I realize when I wrote that Bloomberg and Watts should worry about the "next gallery opening" that Shannon Watts and her husband John actually owned an art gallery. Thanks to "Dirk Diggler" for pointing it out. The gallery, Watts Fine Arts, was located in Zionsville, Indiana. They said their goal is to be a destination for art collectors around the Midwest. The Watts wanted to bring contemporary masters to the Midwest saying in the press release, "Watts Fine Art represents living American artists who create exceptional paintings, sculpture and photography previously only available on the East and West Coasts and in the American Southwest."

The funniest thing about all of this is not the pretentiousness of it but that I found the press release on Go figure.

UPDATE II: After I wrote about the Watts' gallery, I find that it closed its doors in October 2012.
John Watts, owner of Watts Fine Art, said despite several marketing efforts, the store will close in October because business has been slow and the shop isn’t getting enough foot traffic and sales.

“After over three years in business, it became clear to us that our strategy of bringing museum quality national artists to Indianapolis was not a fit for the local market and especially Zionsville,” he said. “We don’t see this changing for a variety of reasons and did not want to compromise on the type of art we sell or the artists we represent.
Obviously, their heathen neighbors in flyover country just didn't appreciate the efforts of the Watts to bring them culture. 


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. -Shannon Watts husband John Watts, Sr. (former President of Wellpointe, a BC/BS Healthcare entity and recipient of a multi-million golden parachute several years ago) owns an art gallery in Suburban Indianoplis. . . .

    Somehow - I don't think John is gonna invite me in for a private tour and a glass of Chardonnay

    -Dirk Diggler

    1. I saw that $6.6 million golden parachute in my searches. Nice if you can get it.

    2. I meant to ask - are you going to be in Indy for the NRA Annual Meeting?

    3. Art gallery closing explains why John has had so much free time to rack up speeding tixs.

      as for NRA convention, I have been putting out feelers to see if Shannon will let me bunk at her place since all of her "children" (save John's wimpy 15 yr old son who is afraid to go to the movies) are grown and out of the nest (so she has space), but no response. Maybe I can get Shannon to meet me for Bkfst at starbucks?

      -Dirk Diggler

    4. John - not to be a conspiracy theorist, but . . . . if John Watts gallery closed down in Oct 2012, and Sandy Hook happened Dec 14, 2012, and Shannon needed something to do/pay the bills so they didn't eat into the principal of his golden parachute (interest rates are a little low to get by on $6.6M), well then . . . . hmmmmm. You have to really wonder about the timing of Moms Demand Action, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Mayors Against Illegal Guns, now don't ya??

      -Dirk Diggler

    5. That... wow. I'm not one for tin-foil beanies, either, but that makes a disturbing amount of sense.

  3. Zionsville is lousy with "hobby businesses". Mrs. Doctor or Mrs. Esquire has an antique shop or a gallery as a tax write-off.

    Seriously, get in your Google car and take a virtual drive around the main drag; it's the sort of painfully twee small town square on the fringes of the big city that has been preserved by the kind of people who love old Victorians and do not wish to dwell in the thunderously gauche McMansions of Bedroomville next door, but don't want to risk living in a trendy in-town neighborhood, either, because there might be black people nearby.

    1. so that's why Shannon won't let me crash at her place for the NRA Meeting??

      -Dirk Diggler

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