The Chimes at Midnight
Tuesday, September 30, 2008
 
Oh and while we are waiting...
Senator Bernie Sanders made a great speech on the senate floor not three weeks ago in which he outlined in cogent detail the origins of the current financial crisis...it makes for very interesting reading to say the least.

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"It is the End of the World As We Know It"
so sang Michael Stipe in far palmier times.

Times like this Humble Elias reflects on the speech Senator Hiram Johnson gave on the defeat of the soldier's bonus bill in the summer of 1932...12,000 starving veterans had the Capitol all but surrounded as congress declined to take any action to ameliorate their situation.
Johnson rose in the US Senate and said the following:

"This marks a new era in the life of our nation… The time may come when this folderol- these trappings of government - will disappear when fat old men like you and me will be lined up against a stone wall."

The waters are rising fast my friends, they will surge over the heads of a lot of proud and vain political and economic hacks...ah but what of the rest of us eh?
The American People are not such fools as imagined by pundits and Rupert Murdoch's spin-doctors. The citizenry are capable of a frightening realism when the times do warrant it.
A frightening realism ruled the election of 1860 and again in 1932 wherein the electorate imposed certain terms on it's leaders and left the details for them to work out.
I think that same frightening realism is about to start driving this election hard.

And for all our sakes I hope for once, that I am not wrong....because as I see it right now, frightening realism is about all we have left.

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Monday, September 29, 2008
 
Negros, Leftist Activists and Jimmy Carter....
are the real secret cause of the current credit crisis or so screamed Jeff Jacoby in yesterday's Globe.
This was...hilarious, Jeff is never more mirthful than when he goes charging up to the boat deck to be the first volunteer for the Titanic's bucket brigade. Did the government's fair lending practices FORCE the financial industry to seek out those bum loans? Certainly not, a lack of regulation and a greed imperative from the usual ignorant dingbats on Wall Street brought this down on us....not that Jeff cares he is too busy rattling his buckets and howling about deadbeat minorities.
Oy.
Honestly where would true believers like Jeff be without Jimmy Carter? He is akin to David Ickes reptile men from the constellation Draco in their minds, a nice safe berzerk-o "other" upon which they can project their own gruesome fantasies.
AS for Jeff, you can tell he is panicking, the nice safe high-fructose laden Freeperworld he has known all his life is disintegrating.

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Sunday, September 28, 2008
 
Friday Night's Debate
I don't think Obama threw any knockout punches, but then again neither did McCain despite a manful flailing effort from the GOP nominee.
McCain looks terrible BTW, it seems like his TV people have given up on the youthening effects of pancake makeup and gone straight to off-white house paint to hide his wrinkles.
Otherwise he came off as quarrelsome and vindictive.
In the absence of a rhetorical "bolt from the blue" it may take a few days for McCain's bad impression to sink into the electorate, baring of course the complete disintegration of western civilization...which is still a possibility of today at 3pm.
Honestly, McCain looks, acts and sounds like an anger addicted boss who yells at his staff when they don't tell him the bad news and who is also notorious for firing anyone who dares to bring him any bad news.
If he wins, I pity the cabinet secretary who contradicts McCain in any way. Bin Laden will still be a liberty, the republic will be bankrupt but that erring cabinet secretary will be PUT in his or her place you can make sure of that.
As my old man would say "Th' guy is a grouch, pure and simple".

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Friday, September 26, 2008
 
John McCain is a big god-damn
Drama Queen.
The market worshippers in the US House have put a potential kibosh on the bailout plan...which will no doubt induce the screaming bedspins in the market worshippers who swarm the floor of the New York Stock Exchange starting in about five minutes EST.
Meanwhile McCain dithers, pouts, postures and as of right now can't make up his battering little mind as to whether he will do the debate tonight.
At this point if he shows up he looks like a fool...if he doesn't he looks like a coward.
Frankly, what was the damn fool thinking? He has already gone on record about his economic ignorance (which any credible historian can tell you is no bar to high office in this man's republic)why fly back to DC to wallow in your own worst issue?
He must be thinking that a dramatic appearance at the debate at the last minute will somehow make him look like a Man of Destiny...instead of the maundering old chump that he is.
Herein, the polls for once, back up Humble Elias to the hilt some 90% of the American people want the debate to go forward....for that reason alone I think there will be a debate tonight.

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Thursday, September 25, 2008
 
When politicians panic...
They are Neville Chamberlain at Munich...

Or Sean O'Donovan's supporters at last night's caucus...

Or they are John McCain who drops a few points in the polls and suddenly wants to suspend the campaign so he can jet back to the comfort of the congressional womb and throw fugues in front of the cameras til' the monsters in his head pipe down.
He has been so relentless about talking up the economy his current abandonment of the campaign makes the guy look like he is having some sort of a breakdown. Which may well be the case...good ghod if he trailed by ten full points imagine the psychotic state McCain would be in?

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Wednesday, September 24, 2008
 
And on the Fourth Ballot, Tara the Jungle Girl swings in to clear the boards....
Congrats to Middlesex County's NEW democratic nominee for Register of Probate, Tara DeChristofaro who hung tough tonight and carried the day at the caucus.
Kudos to Arlington's own Terri Walsh who garnered thirty votes on the first ballot and then threw her support to DeChristofaro pushing the former ADA out to an early lead which she never ceded in three subsequent ballots.
The modalities of the balloting were simple and stark, Sean O'Donovan managed to throw 117 ballots into the pot on the first go, DeChristofaro, Marie Sheehy and Walsh had almost 300 votes between them, thus victory was a mere matter of the right women "coming to Jesus" at the right time. Clearly after three failed party hacks in a row occupying th Register's office the mood in the room was to impose a radical gender switch on the sinecure. Sean O'Donovan's people put up a big fight, plying the delegates with pizza and soft drinks even spreading false and desperate rumors that Marie Sheehy had endorsed their guy...but in the end his progress in the ballots was glacial whilst DeChristofaro galloped along.
That false rumor stunt didn't make Sean O'Donovan any friends tonight, it materially contributed to DeChristofaro's lopsides 68% margin on the fourth ballot.
I think we have the right nominee in the weary wicked end, change is about the zeal to reform, it is about the right policies serving the all the people it is also about the persons who embody those values...DeChristofaro seems to be the right change at the right time.

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Jeff Greenfield on Imus today...
(I drove to work as I wanna attend the caucus tonight despite having heard nothing so far from the democratic state committee about press credentials...and don't ask what I must pay to park on Drydock Avenue)

***
Ah Jeff, y'know I almost miss his pompous smug little voice, his orotund sentences and his sad now shattered dream to be the Walter Lippman of the 21st century.
He sounded like a beaten man today, he proports "not to understand" the meltdown in the financial sector and then makes a spurious claim that neither Wall Street nor Congress understood it either.
This ominous bon mot was delivered with a nervous little laugh that reassured exactly no one in the I-Man's aging embittered demographic.
Well what of it?
The waters have finally risen up to the tip of Jeff Greenfield's nose and they bid to surge over his head if this thing really starts to jump ugly. Of course he doesn't understand the sudden extinction of the US Financial Industry, the man has traded in nothing but caricatures and spin-enhanced political gossip for decades now, facts figures the fate of great nations are all beyond Jeff Greenfield.
So of course, Jeff retreats back into cartoonishness at the first opportunity, the conversation swung over to the presidential campaign and it was with relief that Jeff clambered up onto safer ground comparing Sarah Palin to "Davey Crockett" and "Norma Rae".

He even managed to mutter about "left wing hollywood writers"...you'd think it was 2002 the way Jeff was talking. But of course, it is not, the republic is in mortal danger and all he can do is traffic in cartoons...well let him enjoy that little spoonful of earth he stands on, the waters are still rising. Soon enough Jeff will be taking sidestroke lessons with the rest of us and in real time too.

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Oversight?
Oversight.
Over-sight!
OVERSIGHT!!!

HELL YEAH there had better be some rigorous congressional oversight when and if this bailout bill passes!
Considering that it is the lack of regulatory oversight that is the root cause of our current financial crisis...then it seems sort of natural to wanna make some modest changes goin' forward.
Tuesday, September 23, 2008
 
When Spartans Politick...




Say what you like about Arlington, but the Town Democratic Committee managed to fill the entire slate of delegates for the upcoming Middlesex County Register of Probate nominating caucus.
Now if only they will all show up....
I hear tell Framingham, mighty Framingham, the Commerce Goddess of Route Nine, has had trouble filling up their slate.
I'm a little disappointed otherwise, from what I can tell, audience and the press will be kept off the caucus floor> This is apparently a security measure to prevent ballot-stuffing but still I'd love to roam free as I did at the state democratic convention.
Nonetheless Humble Elias will be there, opportunities like this don't come often, where else can a major party nomination be had for such a minimal effort?
Hell with twenty announced candidates the just speeches alone will take an hour or more to plow thru assuming everyone can keep to a three minute limit.
Monday, September 22, 2008
 
Probate Politics
Arlington activist Terry Walsh has picked up some interesting endorsements as of today as we move towards the big caucus on Wednesday to determine a democratic nominee for Middlesex Register of Probate:

Rep Sean Garballey
Rep Jay Kaufman
Ken Donnelly, Democratic Nominee for Senate, 4th Middlesex
Pat Deal, Democratic State Committee
Carol Donovan, Democratic State Committee

The question is, can Terry swing the support of her boss Martha Coakley behind her candidacy? The Attorney General would have many many friends and good set of political IOU's to cash out on the floor of the caucus if she threw down big for Terry.
That would be a big "tell" that the local Clintonistas especially the women want to start shaking up things at the grass roots level.

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"He said what he meant, and meant what he said"
Kudos to Governor Patrick for moving the ball waa-way forward on police traffic details.
I can't imagine Scary Kerry Healey making so difficult a decision...let alone her four GOP predecessors.
Still and all that, I think the Governor may have bought himself some real trouble when it comes time to run for re-election in 2010. The police unions have real organizational muscle in this state and made life hell for Mike Dukakis in the last two years of his third term.
We ought to keep that in mind goin' forward.
So either Crazy Christy Mihos or Charlie Baker have found themselves a new potential constituency or else Governor Patrick will face some screaming Public Service Union based Kamikaze pilot in the primary...probably both scenarios are likely.

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Sunday, September 21, 2008
 
Bailing Out
700 billion of your dollars are about to be appropriated by congress to buy the bad debts of a host of so called Wall Street Wizards.
The nations topmost wealth worshippers, have in the past week, hit rock bottom with a sickening wet smack and now must go hat in hand to their paid agent in the White House to whimper for a hand out.
HEY!
A.I.G. why doncha get a JOB you BUM!! Some of us have to work for what we have!!!!

These would be the same bums who used to send the market worshippers at the Cato Institute phat checks every year without fail.

These are the same bums who raised millions for Phi Gramm and John McCain so they could deregulate the nation's financial institutions into a state of self destructive ANARCHY!

These would be the same bums who drove the global economy off a cliff!

And now they want 700 billion dollars of our money.

So HELL YEAH Barack Obama should talk tough on regulating the financial sector, I hope he talks even tougher next week! FDR did, listen to his 1933 inaugural address if you don't believe me.

And HELL YEAH, Barney Frank should be fulminating against the malign practice of "golden parachutes". If the American people are buying 700 billions dollars worth of bad debt, then the jerks who created this catastrophe HAD BETTER NOT float safety with millions of fresh greenbacks in their kicks.

This is a golden opportunity for Barack Obama, John Kerry, Barney Frank and the whole of the democratic party to break the power of reactionary socialism in this country.
By that I mean the entire system of tax cut based kickbacks and corporate welfare that has fattened up the overclass in the USA for decades now.

If Wall Street wants a publicly funded bailout, it will have to play by vastly different rules going forward and accept much more stringent regulation of the financial sector.

Frankly it is my hope that Congressman Frank and the congressional democrats write draconian legislation of a kind anathema to the President and Wall Street.

Hey it is a free market they can walk away and take their chances on boostrapping themselves back up to the top.

Oh but wait mah frenz, in a few days politics will set in and you will actually read caustic editorials from the likes of Jeff Jacoby defending executive hypercompensation on grounds of the "sanctity of contracts" or some such twaddle like that.
Watch for it!
Well these dingbats are about to sign a contract with the American people so for the sake of the polity I hope their representatives in congress drive a hard bargain.

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Saturday, September 20, 2008
 
Sighted at Arlington's Town Day this morning...
the Town GOP Committee festooned it's booth with pictures of Abraham Lincoln and Martin Luther King...my guess is, in defiance of the local democrat-bigot-bourbon's King must've registered Republican at some point early in his life. So today's race baiters like John McCain can now claim kinship without the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King without giving up the malevolent reaches of their agenda.
Funny how political symbology works.

Pardon me but I don't recall seeing Richard Nixon, Dwight Eisenhower, Henry Cabot Lodge OR McCain's political sire, Barry Goldwater introducing Dr. King at the Lincoln Memorial.
For that fact, wasn't McCain OPPOSED to making King's birthday a holiday before he was for it??

Sick
Demented
Typical

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Friday, September 19, 2008
 
Caucus Schmaucus...
Long time Arlington democratic activist Terry Walsh has tossed her top-hat into the ring for the Middlesex County Register of Probate race. Since Buonomo won the primary despite having withdrawn last month, a caucus at a location in Waltham next week composed of all the municipal democratic committees will determine the nominee.
this is a rare occasion to say the least and a PRIME blogging opportunity, Humble Elias will move heaven and earth to be there!
I mean think about it, no campaign offices, no real fundraising, no volunteers no paid stuff, just barnstorm a caucus and you are the nominee of the party for an obscure but vital sinecure.
No wonder some thirty or so people are circling around the position...
Terry Walsh could be an interesting candidate, a lot of Hillary Clinton's core supporters sit on town and city democratic committees in this county, they just got double tucked back this summer between losing in Denver and having a Aunt Tom like Sarah Palin duct-taped to the GOP ticket...so a lot of that cohort may be out for some vengeance at the caucus. Terry could tap into that energy if she played her cards right. An argument could be made that Bob Antonelli's personal failings and John Buonomo's embarrassing chiseling make the office ripe for a woman's reforming zeal. Connect those Hillary-dots and you can be a nominee I guarantee it, lets not forget the Junior Senator from New York WON the Massachusetts primary in a cakewalk.

Walsh is making all the right noises mostly about restoring integrity and professionalism to the office she is also talking up the need to digitize some of the processes within the Register of Probate's office. All good ideas, she has a background as an elected official in Arlington (the Housing Authority) and is an attorney working for AG Martha Coakley, all stong datapoints on her resume.
Mostly though, it is about swinging an electorate of 600 behind you, anything can happen at this caucus though, it ought to be fascinating.
For more info on how these thing work click on the link waa-ay down below to .08 Acres, the redoubtable Sco has a whole run-down on how the mishaugas works.

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Thursday, September 18, 2008
 
It is strictly a cash bar at a glittering joint called democratic party unity....
So anyway I went down to the Democratic Unity Rally at the Sons of Italy in Arlington last night...there was good crowd though mostly it was composed of Donnelly supporters who missed Tuesday night's big victory do'.
Sean "I'm for everyone" Garballey was finally seen in public now that the rubble has settled from the state senate primary. It was a good strong activist crowd unfazed by the presidential campaign's ups and downs, most if not all know the drill. Most of the small talk in the room was about the upcoming county caucus to determine a democratic nominee for Register of Probate, somehow somewhere, Humble Elias will be in that hall!
Governor Patrick and state democratic chair Walsh both made effective speeches (Does the Governor ever turn in a bad job at the podium? I think not)and Jack Hurd, the main reason for this whole unity mishaugas spoke gracefully and endorsed Donnelly.
Given the fact that it was a pro-Donnelly room it took class for Jack to show up. Certainly very few of Jack's core supporters were in attendance, but Hurd himself did the right thing last night, he is a man of decency who deserves better.
Ken Donnelly simply "nationalized" an obscure state senate primary in Massachusetts, from Humble Elias' perspective there is no shame in such a loss.
One program note, kudos to the Sons of Italy, their cash bar certainly does not water down the Jack Daniels (unlike some of these other places y' go too)! I had two good slugs and staggered home home singing the Fenian version of "The Foggy Dew" in a fine untrained baritone....so the political season is off to a fine start as far as Humble Elias is concerned.

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Wednesday, September 17, 2008
 
The Firefighter Township or Money Doesn't Talk so much as it Shrieks
Well, as predicted, Ken Donnelly bludgeoned his way to victory last night in the 4th Middlesex democratic state senate primary.
And why?
Because 45,000 USD however carefully deployed and well intentioned can't beat 100,000 USD and a nigh limitless pool of off duty fireghter-volunteers.
Ken Donnelly debates poorly to indifferently but thanks to the above factors he runs hard on election day...and what the hell it worked.
Other factors played into last night's victory as well.
About 4,000 of Jim Marzilli's politically homeless base broke for Donnelly in the weary wicked end but only after a summer of the most abject beggary and wheedling from the Donnelly campaign.
The candidate and the rump of Jim Marzilli's high command simply did a better more effectively financed job of cajoling the state senator's core cohorts.
The studied "neutrality" of many local politicians also played a factor, Lexington Representative Jay Kaufman for example finally climbed down off the fence an hour after the polls closed to all but weep with joy when he introduced Donnelly at his victory last night.
Word on the street is, some of the public sector unions leaned on Rep. Kaufman to steer clear of the fight...but that is but a rumor my friends.
Of sturdier stuff is Arlington's own Representative Sean "I vote for Everyone" Garballey who was statesman-like in his absence from Donnelly's victory party last night. Word is, he was out celebrating his own primary victory over exactly no one at all.

The lessons learned from this primary aren't too complicated, some of them are strangely sad to be honest:
The sun has set on the fabled buzzcuts from Arlington, they've made two attempts to bust out of their redoubt in Town Hall and have been decisively rebuffed both times.
This is in part because they do not go into coalitions very easily. For example, popular Arlington selectperson Annie LaCourt's favor if not her endorsement might have been fetched by the Hurd campaign but for the buzzcut's insistence on challenging LaCourt's re-election last year.
Their base is also aging rapidly out of the game the term "old Arlington family" now refers to actual retirees in many cases.
Moreover if you want to win in the 4th Middlesex, you need professional campaign management, you might without it but you need the stones of a burglar, the stamina of a Jamaican donkey and throat of William Jennings Bryan.
You can see the problem easily if you are a popular selectman from Arlington with low name recognition outside of town and limited funds.

As for Ken Donnelly he has won and won convincingly but his long term prospects remain clouded.
He can fundraise like a sumbitch and summon fire-battalions of volunteers but he is still a dodgy script dependent public speaker. To win this fight he practically had to promise the liberals free hookers and the biblical seven phat years of prosperity...delivering on all of it is impossible, delivering on a little will be daunting enough.
Moreover he lost Arlington his home town by six hundred votes last night, he ran amok everywhere else but Arlington has the highest democratic turnout in the district...to do even that well he needed the help and support of the Mahon machine at Town Hall. This raises some long term electoral questions in the mind of humble Elias.

And as always, there are ruffled feathers on the other side, wise democrats should attend to this with some patience and sympathy.
Lord knows we all know what it is like to lose.

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Tuesday, September 16, 2008
 
There will be a Democratic Party Unity event TONIGHT in Arlington
to bind up the wounds from tonight's 4th Middlesex state senate primary..and as democrats are wont to do, we need to start that binding up process early as we do cut deep.
It starts at 7pm at the fabled Sons of Italy Hall on Prentiss Street off Mass Ave (Party goods store on the corner). Governor Deval Patrick will be attendance, I think a big turn out from all factions and activists within the democratic party is very much in order.

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There is a Bear in the Woods mah frenz...
And it eats republics and empires for breakfast sans demure.
Thriving nations descend into poverty and insignificance for a lot of different reasons. Pride, stupidity, willful primitivism a host of reasons really.
Many times the same elites, the same oligarchs the same leaders are continually returned to power to pursue the same policies on the patently insane expectation of a different outcome.
The Romans had this problem; they handed over the tatters of their republic to the twitchy descendents of Julius Caesar until at long last Nero decided he was the Goddess of Revelsm gowns and all, he brought down the army on himself and the House of Augustus.
We've got the same problem here in America right now, the same gang that got us into this mess are the same ones backing John McCain to the hilt. Somehow more tax cuts and less regulation and more lobbyists making the laws is supposed to bring prosperity back to the USA soonest. Well....in an objective sense we've already seen where that notion leads us, recession...therefore more of the same will lead to a depression doesn't that make common sense?

***
We can all start out in the middle class and still end up living in refridgerator boxes. All it takes is enough guys at the top with no sense of consequence and a great deal of greed.

Sick
Demented
Typical...

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Monday, September 15, 2008
 
Oops almost forgot to make an endorsement...
The Chimes at Midnight proudly endorses John Kerry for re-election to the United States Senate from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.
To put aside his leadership in this critical time would be the absolute height of folly.
On the environment, defense, terrorism, foreign policy and down to the worries and woes of small businesses, John Kerry has taken the point sans demure.
He is not Edward Maxiumus, nor will he ever be...he was never whelped by legends out of legendary times.
But John Kerry has drive, brains, passion and a willingness to serve in both tough times and in fair weather...I for one will take that any day of the week.
Challenges of catastrophic proportions face the nation, our foreign policy is composed of a collection of ruins and the global financial system may well melt down starting today on Wall Street.
Now more that ever don't we need a voice of experience, a man of wisdom someone who will stick up for the little guy when the mighty start toppling?

Who we need is John Kerry, please vote for him tomorrow in the democratic primary.

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Friday, September 12, 2008
 
LWV democratic primary forum for the 4th Middlesex state senate seat....
And in the end, we learned nothing new about either candidate...Jack Hurd or Ken Donnelly.
We can just run down the list of fourteen questions asked, Hurd and Donnelly had more or less the same answers for twelve of them.

1.) State relief of the MBTA's debt?
Both favor the action.

2.) Casinos
Hurd opposes, Donnelly approves both seem to think the issue is a dead letter for now.

3.) Police details:
Both support Governor Patrick's current reform.

4.)Ballot Question #1 (Repeal of the income tax)
Both men violently oppose the passage of question one.

5.) Keeping state annuities policies gender neutral.
Both men are in favor, though clearly they hadn't given the idea any thought til last night.

6.) Election day voter registration.
Both are for it, hammer and tongs.

7.) Promotion of alternate energy sources....
Both men were long and loud in praise of alternate fuels...they both drove home in cars run by internal combustion engines designed a hundred years ago...but they still love their Karo syrup fuels...in theory.

8.) A progressive state income tax...
Donnelly loves it the way a dog loves a fresh bone.
Hurd likes it on the condition that the funds be earmarked for education and infrastructure.

9.) How to get more local aid to a growth-strapped community like Arlington?
Hurd calls this his #1 priority and bangs the pots for the Governor's municipal partnership acts with it's proviso for local restaurant and hotel taxes.
Donnelly the same likewise. Neither man wants to over promise where this touchy issue is concerned.

10.) Revision of 40B
Both wanna do it to give localities more flexibility in housing decisions...again neither man delved too deeply into this complicated issue.

11.) Raising the cap on charter schools...
Both men are staunchly opposed.

12.) Decriminalization of marijuana....
Donnelly is for it, Hurd opposes.

I skipped recapitulating two other questions because their responses meandered interminably or else their core views had been stated earlier in the questioning.

Well there you have it, two nice white Irish liberals from the suburbs one a former manager at Polaroid the other a former fire-lieutenant...the primary is Tuesday and as yet even this late in the game not much distinguishes either man in an ideological sense.
Neither sounds particularly adventuresome, one doubts either Hurd or Donnelly has any William Jennings Bryan-ish crusade in them.
Can't imagine either man at the podium of the state senate standing at Armageddon and battling for the lord.
Jack Hurd for all his low key charm is no Deval Patrick in the eloquence department, Ken Donnelly's speechmaking will never make anyone forget Barack Obama.
If elected both men will return all their phone calls, zealously answer all roll calls and smile...a lot....other than that folks, Hail freakin' Mary.
The conventional wisdom still sez it is Donnelly's race to lose, he has once again raised most of his money from out of district unions and PACs and his firefighter volunteer base is poised to project power deep into the precincts on Tuesday.
For all that Hurd still exudes that weird confidence that could come from the Harry Truman Zone or the battered shack where the shade of Henry A. Wallace hides from the noon sun.
Yet some of the boys in the back room are muttering about a tight race with a 50-50 percentile in Arlington. If that is the case then the decision gets exported to Lexington, Billerica, Burlington and Woburn and the mission gets awfully hinky. That I know of, neither campaign has gone the hard core voter ID route so exactly WHO is gonna show up in the other communities of the distrct on primary day to vote for WHOM is a mystery.

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Thursday, September 11, 2008
 
Another, 4th Middlesex democratic state senate primary candidate forum
is planned for tonight at Arlington Town Hall at 7:30pm courtesy of the League of Women Voters.
Questions will be entertained from the crowd via handwritten 3x5 cards...so legible handwriting and a sensible soul are at a premium.
I for one am starting to get tired of all these candidate forums, they are tedious affairs the views of both candidates Hurd and Donnelly accord very closely save on the issue of casino gambling (Donnelly sorta for, Hurd dead set against).
I am tempted to stuff the question box with the following query:
"When executing a witch, warlock or other practitioner of the black arts do you favor a public burning, drowning them in Spy Pond or simply braining the magickal miscreants with a broken piano leg?"

Apparently there is some controversy about the 3x5 card system now used by the LWV. In the old days the citizens would step up to the mike and ask the question directly...that is how it was til the special election last fall when folks started grandstanding and haranguing the candidates. Personally I favor the 3x5 card system, makes for a brisk forum and keeps things focused on the views of the candidate.
It isn't like Hurd and Donnelly are campaigning for the office via shortwave from Thunder Bay or anything.
There are plenty of opportunities to chat or bluster at either man, live and in person...it is just that the potential audience might vary. I think that has got some folks up in arms out in Arlington.

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Wednesday, September 10, 2008
 
In-ter-esting...(updated)
The Springfield Republican alleges that FBI agent Michael O'Reilly brother of US senate candidate Ed O'Reilly was "twisting arms" at the state democratic convention on behalf of his brother's candidacy back in June.

Hummmmm...dunno what to make of that....The Hatch Act is supposed to protect us from alleged situations like this.

Just sayin'

Oh and this line from the above Springfield Republican article is quietly hilarious:
Michael G. O'Reilly, the affable, high-profile former supervisor for the Springfield FBI office...

Guess he was the one who didn't skip out on charm school as a lad.

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The 4th Middle$ex $tate $enate Race....
I have come to the conclusion that without the firm support of union firefighters especially those that live far outside the senate district, Ken Donnelly would have a hard time getting elected to town meeting in Arlington...and we have actual canines and sundry pets lawfully elected to town meeting in Arlington.
Donnelly's current campaign finance filings reveal a heavy influx of union money especially firefighter unions and affiliated political action committees these would include firefighters from as far away as Utah and San Francisco.
I have to wonder about the strategic thinking among firefighters in San Francisco and Utah...California has a republican governor with a zeal for budget cutting and Utah is bleeding red state of the first rank. You'd think they'd wanna keep their money at home and see what it could get started....
Frankly Humble Elias doesn't see how either group benefits from electing Ken Donnelly to the state senate in far off Massachusetts save perhaps some sort of firefighter bragging rights.

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Tuesday, September 09, 2008
 
Well by now you know why there will never be a Chimes at Midnight Podcast...
Cuz Humble Elias sounds like Chester Snavely the undertaker over the cyber-airwaves...

Anyhow, the damage can be heard here.

Anyhow most of the conversation seemed to be between Me and Lynne Lupien and as predicted I came off as "nervous and sweaty and all out-of-key" (To quote Ringo Starr)...I did not get up the nerve to flirt with Ms. Lupien...ah well something for next time.
:D
 
A shameless plug that I will no doubt live to regret:
I'll be on the Left Ahead podcast today at noon.
Three bloggers whose work I respect are about to find out that I am the very picture definition of a crashing bore.
Monday, September 08, 2008
 
Postscript to yesterday's item
I really did sweat out a nice "Red-Line Crawl" to South Station this morning, although I did not stop to count the cabs whizzing by on the Longfellow bridge. No doubt one of them contained Jeff Jacoby high as a kite on high-fructose laden "energy drinks" and screeching into his I-phone about the KGB tactics of the Food and Drug Administration.
****
Note to the Laity:
I will be calling in to the "Left Ahead" podcast tomorrow...so you can all hear my debased baritone groan on and on about useless political nonsense if you so choose. Apparently they are then interviewing citizen Ed O'Reilly on Wednesday which beautifully illustrates where I am in the heirarchy I guess. Under the circumstances there will nothing left to do except flirt outrageously with Lynne Lupien...which is more than they will get from Ed O'Reilly by Jesus!

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Sunday, September 07, 2008
 
Taxicab blues....
Jeff Jacoby is all exercised about the plethora of "soviet style" regulations imposed on taxi cabs by the city of Boston.
Personally this is wretched rhetorical excess, there is room for reasoned debate over taxi regulation in Suffolk County sans recourse to the horrors of the Kolyma Goldmines or the planning failures of the Zond moon landing program.
But then this IS Jeff Jacoby we are talking about, staving off reasoned debate via gruesome similes is his very meat.
Frankly taxicab regulation is an issue dear to the overclass and only the overclass.
When is the last time a temp or a library assistant at the BPL took a cab anywhere?
For that fact, most average Americans take a taxi under the most dire circumstances possible usually involving life or death.
I am not sure I've taken a taxi anywhere in Boston for over a decade now.
What ordinary person can afford those prices?
If you are a columnist for the Boston Globe it is no doubt different, taxis and the status and convenience they confer are a part of your elite milieu.
And if you are a conservative columnist with a heavy schedule to keep, I'm sure they are simply vital.
The rest of us, the normal peeps are stuck on the Longfellow bridge waiting for the Red Line to stop slamming the doors and get on with our ride while Jeff goes whizzing by in a cab bitching and moaning about "statism".

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Friday, September 05, 2008
 
As for John McCain...
The republican national convention is a group composed equally of bloated corruptards and outright revolutionaries sodden with the expectation of one day being the dominant political actor in a de facto one party state.
Preaching bipartisanship to such a rabble is akin to trying to teach a bunch of blood soaked druids to ditch human sacrifice in favor of the Baltimore Catechism.
Indeed no political party in the history of this nation has done more to destroy bipartisanship than the modern GOP. Newt Gingrich shot when it's back was turned in 1995 and George Bush Jr. buried it's still flailing self alive in 2001.
The damage is so severe and so extensive that I've told politically minded friends of mine that we shan't see bipartisanship make any sort of a real comeback in the political life of the United States in our lifetimes.
But there was Old John last night groaning and gasping that he can somehow govern from a center that his own party helped destroy.
Marx would call this a "contradiction"...Humble Elias just thinks it is plain foolishness and a good indication of how out of touch McCain really is.

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O'Reilly in Twilight....
In less than an hour Citizen Ed O'Reilly tapes a debate with Senator John Kerry moderated by Jon Keller.
It would be charitable to note, the summer has not been good to the O'Reilly campaign. Media opportunities have been sparse, he has run thru campaign managers like kleenex, his crowds still sparser his most fervent supporters are a mere gaggle of louts who hang out on the Blue Mass Group looking for trouble.
And is Howie Carr still returning any of his phone calls?
And in fifty four minutes, O'Reilly goes up against a man who beat Bill Weld in four straight debates (No small achievement kids, when sober the former Governor was a formidable rhetorician)and smacked down President Bush so bad in three national debates that the GOP had go out and steal another whole election all over again.
It won't be pretty...akin to say Ingmar Johansson trying to out box Muhammad Ali...a young and hungry Muhammad Ali.
It won't be pretty, O'Reilly spent all summer in a sort of gruesome fugue state demanding dozens upon dozens of debates...Kerry finally agreed to one debate and suddenly O'Reilly is seized with a weird rhetorical paralysis...he is even shoo-ing away his supporters from any pre-debate visibility.
Sad...no pathetic really.
Ed...for God's sake, it is OVER!
The Fat lady has flown in on her magick horse with sword and horned helmet and she is SINGING long and loud arias mah fren'!
Can you hear them Ed? Smartly underscored by horns, thundering percussion and strings that soar over the strife.
If that doesn't convince then the spectacle of Wotan off in the wings searching for his butane lighter with which to set fire to Valhalla ought to pretty much seal the deal.
You aren't Ned Lamont, you certainly aren't Paul Tsongas and you will never get to the US Senate save as a tourist.
It is over, unlike other parts of the country there is no shame in losing in Massachusetts...the ranks of full of worthwhile men and women and they even live pretty good lives afterwards, it can be the same to you.
But whether or not you even get to that point depends of how you use the time left to you before the primary...whether you comport yourself with honor or go out like a punk.
But politics is about reality and reality is sink it's fangs deep into your leg dude.

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Thursday, September 04, 2008
 
Hilarious...
Scary Kerry Healey isn't closing the door on a 2010 gubernatorial run.
Apparently she must have somehow paid back all that money she borrowed from her millionaire husband in order to run and lose in 2006. How she did it is a mystery perhaps she waited on tables at night or sold Amway or something.
Anyway there is nothing funnier than a pol that just doesn't get it, Healey didn't lose she was repudiated and nothing has changed since November '06 to change any aspect of the voter's verdict. She is still a silly ambitious hack who vaulted to the second position in the Commonwealth on the basis of her gender and a willingness to play the lackey to Mitt Romney.
But please Ms. Healey DO pile in by all means...nothing promises greater mirth for campaign 2010...nothing.
At this point the only pol out there more clueless than Scary Kerry Healey is Willard Mitt Romney who is panting to run again in 2012.
Good lord now there is a man who has learned nothing from his defeat and degradation this year...and it will glorious to watch him bungle the job again in 2012.

This is ironic, both Romney and Humble Elias are emotionally invested in McCain's defeat.

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Wednesday, September 03, 2008
 
Today's Palin revelation
in addition to being a loopy mother, a corruptionist of the first rank and a gun worshipper...we can add that apparently McCain's VP pick is also a Falangist of some type.
This is downright creepy mah frenz how this in fact jibes with McCain's "Amurrica Furst" theme is a holy mystery.
I will wager that you don't have to dig far into the ranks of the Alaskan Independence Party to find all the usual white supremacist hogwash...this report from the Southern Poverty Law Center is certainly food for thought.
***
Well...what of it?
Is Sarah Palin corrupt? What Alaska republican doesn't have their mitts deep into a slush fund of one type or another. Fully half the delegates to the current GOP national convention have something going good on the side.
Is Sarah Palin personally weird alternating between debased book worship and a sad primitive veneration for fire-arms common to indigenous tribes of New Guinea?
Again that must be 100% of the delegates....
Is she a falangist? Well so is the Vice President of the USA...Sarah Palin has nothing in common with the mainstream of public opinion in the USA but she is perfect fit with the cult that is today's republican party.
Honestly though, if the "Bill Clinton rules of engagement" were being fairly enforced by the news media, Ms. Palin would already be booted off the ticket in disgrace.
***
Oh and this is just sad, they are flying the poor pimply lout that got Bristol Palin pregnant to the RNC so he can pretend to be her fiancee or some embarrassing shit like that.
Honest to Ghod these people have no shame whatsoever.
They also the most callous ineptiods I've ever seen, this whole sad situation is the GOP's idea of a virgin sacrifice to the propitiate the Gwds of Traditional Family Values...sad to see isn't it?

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Tuesday, September 02, 2008
 
Young @ Heart
I think every GOP national convention should open with an old fashioned back country shotgun wedding...sorta underscores the whole "family values" rubbish nicely doesn't it?
Hell, Governor Palin can level her 12 gauge right at the back of the groom, it is really the ultimate photo-op, I recommend staging the nuptials on the last night of the convention with that protestant pontiff, the Reverend James Dobson presiding.

If you don't believe in evolution
and
You don't believe in sex education let alone effective birth control
Then
Don't be shocked when your daughter doesn't herself believe in holding onto her virginity a moment longer than whimsy dictates.
Your idiotic fantasies pretty much set the stage for her downfall so far as I can see.
***
Of course, the victim here is Bristol Palin, married off at age seventeen so that her mother, McCain's vice presidential albatross, Sarah Palin can go before the Republican national convention and pretend to be Betty Crocker, nonthreatening domestic goddess.
The GOP has a malign habit of promoting fraudulent nonsense like this, I can recall back in 1992 the edifying spectacle of Marilyn Quayle, that ambitious Attorney, Activist and undeniably brainy wife of then Vice President Dan Quayle screeching the praises of submissive domesticity into the microphones at the Republican national convention.
This would be the same Marilyn Quayle who allegedly had labor induced so that she could take the bar exam on schedule.
Ah well, nothing ever changes does it? The GOP will tolerate some pretty unseemly feminine beasts as long as they bow low to the myth of domestic servitude.
We will hear a lot more rubbish in praise of "traditional families" in the days to come mostly from persons who have mastered the art of concealing their own moral failings and the sad personal vices of their loved ones.
***
Still and all that one ray of sunshine in this sad miasma is that a few rumors on some blogs Humble Elias has never heard from was enough to prompt full disclosure from Governor Palin within hours!
I mean...yay bloggers!

Geez will someone let me play?
I wanna try!
After all what I've heard about Cindy McCain is possibly enough to compell McCain to resign the ticket!
:D

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Monday, September 01, 2008
 
McCain needed a Jane Swift
and he ended up with a Kerry Healey as veep.

Thats how I see it, Hell Jingle Money herself would have been a better pick...
Apparently Sarah Palin was picked sans too much vetting and checking and we are now learning today that her seventeen year old daughter is pregnant.
Honestly, Jingle Money is looking better and better all the time, are the hard core values-pimps in the GOP, Bill Bennetts the James Dobsons really gonna let this pass?
Probably they will, being congenital hypocrites...but it'll be fun to question them about it, especially that pompous hack Bennett or William Donahue the GOP's chief catholic shill.

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