Buddy Cianci

By JOE VILENO  |  September 24, 2007

What can you tell us about your job as a talk radio host on WPRO-AM? How did the contract negotiations go? How much will you earn, and how do you see your radio show going?
I can’t tell you about my contract talks and salary — that is confidential — but it will be very good, I can tell you that. I can say clearly that I will be earning considerably more on radio than I earned in prison at $11.84 per month! As for the show itself, as I said publicly already, there will not be any negativity to my show when I get going. I have no axe to grind, I am not out to get anyone. I’ll be addressing the issues Rhode Island has, like how to achieve economic growth, the state and cities’ tax burdens, things like that. Right now, the growth industries in Rhode Island are gambling and the landfill! I will be talking about issues such as the advantages of consolidating school districts in Rhode Island — we have too many now — and whatever else comes up. And we will discuss national issues. I will be talking about stories you won’t read about in the Journal, stories the Journal may not run involving their favorite public figures. I mean, since I went away, the Journal now charges families for obituary space — imagine, a family is mourning a loved one and you have to pay the Providence Journal to let friends know publicly!
 
My show will not be about me as a political person, but my views as a citizen. I missed not being on talk radio. It was the happiest time in my career. I enjoyed it more than being mayor, because you feel free to talk about anything, to speak your mind without concern for how something will “play” with the voters or with the City Council, which you need to govern. I really look forward to going back on the radio.

What else will you be doing? You have talked about writing a book and setting up a library of the records and events of your administrations as mayor.
I am talking with a television station here to become their chief political analyst for special programs, at election times and when major issues come up, but we have not finalized anything yet. Yes, I am going to do the book, that is a labor of love for me. I kept notes of everything I could think of during my time in prison. I will tell the real story of my career, not like The Prince of Providence [the book by Journal reporter Mike Stanton about Cianci and the Plunder Dome experience and trials]. I was recently told that Stanton was at a book event in New York City, I think in SoHo, and he was giving a talk on his book, wore a white suit like the famous author Tom Wolfe wears, acting like he [Stanton] was a major author. Hell, he only wrote one book in his life and if it wasn’t for me he wouldn’t have a book. I never read the book [The Prince of Providence] and don’t care to read it. People have told me about some parts of it, but I do not intend to read it.

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