News & Features » News

Doing unto others



Time for the Hightower "Gooberhead" Award, presented periodically to those whose tongues do not seem to be connected in any way to their brains. Today's awardee: Al Dunlap. Yes, he's the notorious "Chainsaw Al," known for taking-over corporations, severing thousands of employees from their jobs and walking away with millions of dollars in personal profits. Today's Goober, however, is not given to him for his mistreatment of workers, but for the way he's mistreating his neighbors. Chainsaw lives in a super-exclusive neighborhood of multimillion-dollar homes adjacent to a ritzy resort in Boca Raton. Exclusive as it is, though, Al is worried about crime. It seems someone smashed the sunroof of his Mercedes while it was parked in his driveway. Plus, a fountain was taken from his yard, and a concrete pineapple has been stolen from the wall around his garden. So Dunlap wants armed guards to protect his property. Fine. Except that he wants his neighbors to chip-in on the $270,000-a-year price tag for 24-hour, gun-toting security. "No thank you," said the neighbors, who are not having any security problems and feel perfectly safe. Chainsaw took this neighborly rejection with all the grace and maturity we've learned to expect from today's corporate leaders: He has threatened to sue them. Mr. Dunlap "will make sure people are held responsible" for any damage he suffers from their failure to pay for his protection, his lawyer says in a very twisted bit of legal logic. But, then, Al's a pretty twisted guy who does not seem to care about doing the neighborly thing. "If you want a friend," Dunlap says, "buy a dog." Money will buy a good dog, but it won't buy the wag of its tail. Given Chainsaw Al's cheerful personality, I wouldn't be surprised if he gets bitten by his own pet. What a gooberhead.

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Orlando Weekly. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Orlando Weekly, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at

Orlando Weekly works for you, and your support is essential.

Our small but mighty local team works tirelessly to bring you high-quality, uncensored news and cultural coverage of Central Florida.

Unlike many newspapers, ours is free – and we'd like to keep it that way, because we believe, now more than ever, everyone deserves access to accurate, independent coverage of their community.

Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing pledge, your support helps keep Orlando’s true free press free.