Tuesday, August 22, 2017

The Problem with Afghanistan is...

we went in all those years ago in pursuit of a rational-realist agenda that mostly revolved around "Getting Bin Laden" and smashing up his enablers in the Taliban.  Well, we blew the Taliban to hell (as much as we could find anyway) and sent Bin Laden to sleep with the fishes but all these years later we are still tied down in Afghanistan out of very real fears that a departure will only bring back the same old crowd of barbaric wowsers to power.
Somewhere along the line we crossed over the "fact-value nexus' and made ourselves responsible for delivering The Afghans from the clutches of a new class of oppressors....some of this comes from guilt some of it from overweaning ambition. But all the same it's gotten tangled together to create a perfect storm of procrastination, it's NEVER the right time to exit Afghanistan from a policy perspective.
The Kabul Government is never gonna be strong enough, or have enough popular support to perpetuate itself, four thousand more troops and who knows how many money grubbing contractors can't really change that.
We could stay thirty more years in Afghanistan and never get the right conditions to terminate that war, maybe we should start planning a right and proper "declare victory and get out" exit.
I hate to pull a "Stephen Kinzer" like this, but this comes from a sure knowledge that the manpower and resources dedicated to Afghanitan are gonna be needed elsewhere sooner or later....

Just Sayin'

I doubt any of this will come to pass under the present admin, but we should at least start the necessary logistical and diplomatic planning....

Monday, August 21, 2017

Nice work this weekend

The anti alt right march went off well...fewer arrests than at a Patriots Victory Parade...granted the president's tweets were ignorant & churlish but that is how he reacts to things that scare him....remember that going forward.
And I suppose while we are at it that Charlie Baker will get a pass for what amounted to clapping Mayor Walsh on the back lasty week and offering him nothing more than a hearty "Good Luck".

Friday, August 18, 2017

As for Robert E. Lee

that drawing Christ-Like Man on Horseback can Cordially Kill My Fat Irish Ass.  He all but looked Abraham Lincoln in the eye and declined to command the Union Armies in 1861 in their mission to put down the Confederate Rebellion. He blubbered something about "Honor" and "Conscience" and then rode off to Richmond and the Command of the Army of Northern Virginia, CSA conveniently forgotten that long ago oath he took to "Defend the US Constitution".
Let me also point out that almost the entire Confederate Leadership DIED IN BED after the Civil War was lost for the South...with malice towards none indeed mah friends.
The fact that there are statues erected to the memory of Robert E. Goddamned Lee is nothing but proof positive that the USA is the most generous forgiving nation on Earth....frankly they can melt the lot down and sell it for scrap as far as I am concerned.
Don't give me that "Washington & Jefferson owned Slaves, Woodrow Wilson was a negrophobe etc etc " shit either. Washington started this nation and defended it against all comer whatever his flaws, Jefferson loved this country so much he trebled it's size, neither man was ever a disunionist in act or word.
As for Woodrow Wilson, his predecessors and successors were equally negrophobic....no traitors among them at all though...

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Looks like the Alt Right's Rally is a GO This Saturday

On the Common, the kid who took out the permits though, sounds like a passive aggressive little dupe quite frankly.  And I reiterate that the Governor is well within his rights to call out the National Guard, one to protect the citizenry from a very obvious threat of political violence and unrest and secondly to protect a variety of monuments & statues on the Common that are accutely vulnerable to counter vandalism.
But this is Charlie Baker after all, you can wait on real leadership from him until senility makes it all a moot point.
As for Statues of Robert E. Lee...I got short shrift indeed for that whole phenom, Lee looked Lincoln in the eye back in 1861 and declined to lead the Union Armies against the confederate rebellion...the fact we didn't hang him (a commissioned officer in the US Army sworn to defend the US Constitution BTW) after the war and that we've tolerated statues to his bony ass for a hundred plus years is PROOF that this nation is built on charity & tolerance!
But then these mooks down in Virginia didn't show up to venerate Lee's alleged military genius it was to affirm symbolically solidarity with apartheid...hence the guns and violence as well, since you can't successfully segregate sans violence.
I would also point out to Mayor Walsh & Governor Baker (not that they read this dire political remnant) that the Streets of Berlin fell to the Nazis in 1930 because the Government ceased prosecuting and imprisoning NSDAP street thugs, it was a failure of law enforcement, mainstream conservatives panicked, started negotiating with Hitler and the heat came off the Brownshirts as a consequence. Thus then Berlin Gauleiter Josef Goebbels could rack up a victory that was largely due to political cowardice, until the government caved, the Nazis were making little progress in the Capital.
And if indeed, a Synagogue in Charlottesville was menaced by armed Nazis last Saturday, then I can safely save these bastards have a taste for blood now, and thus sterner measures must be taken next time...it'll save us all trouble later on believe me.

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

I wanna take a moment admidst the ongoing Crisis of the Republic


To congratulate CongressPerson Tsongas on her retirement from the US House...71 is old enough I think to stop and smell the roses I think, especially in these perilous times.  I recall with much fondess my "political debut" as lowly volunteer on her Late Husband's Presidential Campaign, would to God I had done ten times as much for him, win or lose.
I suspect this is a congressional race that Charlie Baker and the GOP will contest, but you can never ever tell with that guy...shifty ain't the word for him....

Monday, August 14, 2017

When in the History of the Far Right in the USA

Have the Klan and the Nazis EVER shown up for a demonstration without the intent to incite or initiate violence?
Thats the main lesson from Charlottesville...those guy show up and riots follow they are good at that sort of thing.
Allegeldy a similar "demonstration" is planned on Boston Common for the 19th, if I was Charlie Baker I'd call out the National Guard, but this is Governor Spreadsheets leadership in the face of far right provocation isn't his strong suit.
Some strong leadership now, might prevent violence later, just remember Dr. Goebbels' streetfighters made little progress in Berlin until the national and city leadership essentially fell for the Nazi Bluff and started negotiating with the NSDAP.

Friday, August 11, 2017

What a Minute...

A scant ten months ago at the third presidential debate, didn't Donald Trump groan into the camera "Our Nuclear....It's the Worst!!"  What happened to our strategic forces since then to give the president the confidence to promise North Korea "Fire and Fury"?
:)

All snark aside the modalities behind this crisis are relatively simple, Kim wants keep his Plantation Overseer Hold on North Korea, he saw what happened to East Germany when the Socialist Bloc lost interest in the Cold War and wishes to avoid the same fate...chiefly because Komrade Kim is such sketchy little freak he's have few flight & asylum options. To do that he needs nukes, "nukes keep out troops" is his mantra. Its not lost on him that Israel's minimal nuclear arsenal has an outsized affect deterring Arab Agression against the Jewish State in Middle East.
The USA on the other hand, is desperately trying to shore up a nuclear non proliferation regime in the region sans much help from Moscow or Peking, NK's acquisition of nukes compromises our whole "active forward defense" posture in Asia & creates fear among our own alliance structure...it may even contribute to a pro Peking swing among said allies...who can say? Then again our president is an amateur who may think playing nuclear chicken with a vastly underestimated "pipsqueak Asian Despot" pushes Robert Mueller off the front pages which may well be Trump's sole goal here.
Well as Adlai Stevenson once observed "We are about to discover if this magnificent civilization of ours can create the statesmen necessary to prevent it from being blown sky-high".

Thursday, August 10, 2017

"Fire & Fury"

The history of bombastic empty threats is a rich one.  Mussolini was an absolute master of the art, he referred to the Mediterranean as "Our Sea", threated to invade islands already under Italian Control & his territorial demands at the armistice talks with France in 1940 are as funny as any work by P.G. Wodehouse.
Achmed Sukarno (once the top swank in Indonesia in the 1960's) wanted to rename the Indian Ocean "The Indonesian Ocean" as soon as his poverty wracked nation Got The Bomb of Course.
The late Gamal Nasser used to threaten to push Israel "into the sea" on a daily and sometimes hourly basis, The Late Colonel Ghadaffi used to howl imprecations at the US Seventh Fleet....its all very bloodcurdly and usually impotent.
Because these are threats that are uttered largely for domestic consumption or to rhetorically deter certain international threats, they are the recourse of international actors with limited resources.  Komrade Kim v.3 in Pyongyang makes all sorts of crazy threats to forestall the very real possibility of a US Backed Invasion while spending scarce resources to a crude nuclear deterrent he thinks will somehow keep the wolf from his door.
Thats the main reason he is building those nukes to keep us out, he can't really do much more with them at all given North Korea's small size and stagnant economy.
In other words to quote my late father "threats are the lexicon of weaklings", and its worth noticing that Asia's top threatener, Komrade Kim hasn't yet made good on a single one of his voluminous of international carnage.  Thus for Donald Trump to get down to Kim's Level and counter threaten all sorts of merciless mayhem, it isn't so much a sharp rebuke as a confession of a similar degree of weakness.
But remember, the weak make bad decisions on the fly so all this palaver of mine can go up in smoke pretty instantly.

Monday, August 07, 2017

I am gonna break with orthodoxy and

Take Senior Senator Elizabeth Warren at her word when she says she is NOT running for President in 2020?
Indeed why should she? She has a safe seat (that she should not of course, take for granted), she is a noted fundraiser, she has a line of the Senate Leadership and should the democrats take congress next year she is poised to Do Big Things.
Why give all that up for an uncertain flyer in a volatile race?
Besides we could all be radioactive ash drifting the stratosphere by then, I mean anyone out there checked twitter this morning??
All morbid humor aside, Potomac Fever is being ritually transmitted by the Boston Globe these days, they were ginnin' up Seth Moulton in 2020 earlier this summer and last week it was Deval Patrick's turn, you watch they'll be talking up a primary challenge to Trump by Mitt Romney ere long.
Well I'm glad Senator Warren has stood thwart this process and howled "STOP!" Massachusetts has a few too many unsuccessful presidential candidates on the books, why add another?

Sunday, August 06, 2017

I think its hilarious

that down in DC Jeff Sessions and Mean Ole' Boss Donald Trump are trying to enact a sort of Anti-First Amendment Fatwa against "leakers", meanwhile someone up at the Manchester NH VA Facility had the fortitude to drop a dime on the dilapidated conditions therein to the Boston Globe! And thank ghod too...because the Globe went big with that article and now the DVA is taking "stern measures" to fix the situations. NOTHING would have happened unless someone spoke up..."leaked" in other words.
Ironic...but at least the combat veterans of NH will get the care they deserve.

Congress has Adjourned without Accomplishing Anything

save squabbling with the Administration. Normally I'd be "up in arms" about this Do Nothing Congress of Ours (dominated by aging corrupt GOP time servers) but their actual agenda is pretty much alt right torture porn, so for once we are likely dodging ourselves a bullet.  For however long it lasts anyway....my guess is, Trump will take out his frustrations on the debt ceiling...watch that process closely y'all.

Friday, July 28, 2017

Health Care "reform" Goes "BOOM!"

The GOP's scheme to impoverish millions and destroy the social safety net once and for all failed last night in the US Senate when John McCain the "GOP Moderates" and impressive democratic unity all beat back Mitch McConnell's best shot for a nice hot place in Healthcare Hell.
Meanwhile North Korea just tested another ICBM so if I was the Secretary of Defense I'd be on the alert for any tantrum driven orders to the Pentagon emanating from the Oval Office....and no that is not snark.  Hopefully Trump will steer clear of the red button and just fire some people....

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Kid Rock...

Wants to run for the US Senate in Michigan in 2018, currently he is polling well, but that is likely by high name recognition at this point. From what I can gather he is running as a sort of "MiniTrump" blusterly about the ACA and the Second Amendment in other words.
Get used to more of this by the way, Trump has fatally "made it look easy" with respect to twitchy weirdo celebrities taking a flyer in politics, that seems Kid Rock's real motivation here.
I'm gonna take the counterintuitive view that simply tarring Rock with the brush of "Trumpism" may not be enough to keep the seat in democratic hands.
I think, Trump has already polarized the electorate as much as it can be polarized, but with no diminuation of his appeal to the GOP Base.  So slagging Kid Rock as a Trump acolyte is likely to be counterproductive....no I would take three issues in hand come the general election in 2018;
1.) "Health Care", The GOP promised to make you pay more for less coverage, and by ghod they've delivered.   They've managed to keep an entire nation sleepless and anxiety ridden on this issue in just six short months, I'd hammer away on this whether ACA is reformed or abolished....they promised chaos and misery and they delivered.
2.) The Second Amendment, Kid Rock is gonna Claghorn his ass off on this issue, his rallies will be de facto gun shows...fine let him get as crazy as he wants about firearms. But don't forget to point your finger at him and remind the electorate that every gangster and cop killer in Detroit is armed to the teeth thanks to Kid Rock and the NRA. And if Detroit is a war zone, its a war zone because a bunch of lobbyists & zealots like Kid Rock in DC decided "an armed society is a peaceful society".
3.) "Chaos in Government", don't hammer Trump hammer the anxiety, uncertainty, fear & ineptitude his governance has created, vote for a congress that will do it's damn job.

Start with these three sez I....

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Congrats to Cindy Friedman

on her election to the state senate yesterday, we expect great & good things from her in the months and years to come.

In other news, President Trump is defagging the military, tossing out all trangender soldiers (much to the amazement of the far more tolerant Pentagon), he's making loud belligerent (and impotent noises) about Hillary Clinton's "crimes" and fitfully attacking his own Attorney General trying to jawbone Sessions into resigning.
Oh and that meltdown in front of the Boy Scouts....epic yo.

Y'know I think given the peak decibelage dementia currently issuing from the White House I think all that would be necessary to provoke a complete Presidential Fugue State is for Former Secretary Clinton to quietly suggest that the President is "off his meds".
:)

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

There is a Special Election Today in

In the Fourth Middlesex State Senate District to fill the seat of the Late Senator Ken Donnelly, I urge all my readers in Lexington, Arlington, Burlington, Billerica and the requisite wards in Woburn to get out and vote for Cindy Friedman, an eminently qualified democrat and someone who will "have the district's back" in every way. I had some cause to experience her zeal and ability with respect to a personal matter and they are qualities that will serve this district well...Vote for Cindy!

***

BTW on an unrelated note, that robocall Sunday, had no "paid for" outro as required by law, making it a sort of vile political prank perpetrated by exactly who no one seems to know...but disgruntled democrats might be in the mix....might. All the more reason to vote freely and boldly today sez I.

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Per the Lowell Sun

Ian Jackson the Rainbow-Green Party Candidate for State Senate in Tuesday's Special Election has raised about $2,500.00 mostly thru a alleged self loan. Now he has chosen apparently to spend that cashola on a robocall to the district slagging democrat Cindy Friedman via an alleged elderly Billerica Resident who carps about a Friedman for State Senate Sign being placed on her lawn sans consent.
Its not quite "If Elected, I Shall Go to Korea" by any means, but it is a kind of a low desperate act....

Thursday, July 20, 2017

The Sun Shines Down Like a Blessing on

Charlie Baker's seventy percent approval rating, little stands in his progress towards a "Big Sure Win" in 2018 per Joanie Vennochi in Today's Globe.
I mean we are knee deep in cheap smack despite an election night promise to get a handle on the "Opioid Crisis" from Citizen Baker....no matter, "seventy percent".
An Oxcart is generally more reliable than the MBTA's Red Line or the Green Line or the Orange Line etc etc etc, despite the Governor's assumption of complete financial authority over Mass Transit....a trifle, "seventy percent".
A kid seeking to start over in Boston can find nothing safe or reasonably private to rent anywhere in Greater Boston for less that $1,500.00 a month push utilities and first born. Ho Hum..."Seventy Percent".
Nobody seems to know where to start when it comes to solving a murder case....just chant to yourslf "Seventy Percent!"

And then there is the Governor's utter abdication of any leadership role in the National GOP, either as a gadfly, loyal opposition or whatever in the face of a semi mad chronic adolescent in the White House....just groan aloud "Seventy Percent"....

Enjoy that Seventy Percent while it lasts sooner or later it'll become seventy percent of misery & chaos....

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

BTW kudos to Chuck Schumer

for holding his senatorial caucus together during the entire repeal ACA mishaugas, not one defector so far, forcing that old impotent golem Mitch McConnell to continually canvass his own factured majority for the votes necessary to F*ck Over the American People.
NORMALLY there are at least two twitchy specimens among the senate democrats, pouting out their lower lips and oozing fake regrets as they bow down to the GOP in abject worship "I Luv You Doctor Zaius" they groan...but so far here, nada.  Like I said, this speaks well of Schumer's skillset....its also something of an underreported story, but then I suppose the other shoe could drop at any time.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

I love How Senator McCain's All Expense Paid Blood Clot

is delaying Mitch McConnell's master plan to gut ObamaCare...good thing McCain is on "the public option"  huh?  At least he won't be worrying about what vital treatments are or are not covered by his plan..."Deductible, What Deductible, I am a US Senator!"
***

Not for Nothing, but Mitch McConnell looks all the world like a busted Sunday School Principal who flagrantly torments his students then belligerently lies about it....

All this is akin to the high noon of the Emperor Commodus in Rome, the senatorial order and the overclass in general became completely disengaged from the polity, ne'er to return. Ah but the USA is a democracy, and a true function democracy can always regenerate itself...and right now we need to start regenerating on the quick....


Monday, July 17, 2017

Last Week The President

Idly mused (indeed ALL the President's thinking at this point is idle unaccountable whimsy) that his notional "border wall" with Mexico should be "transparent" so that law enforcement can spot Mexican Drug Dealers "heaving bags of contraband" over the barrier.
Never mind the mirthful image of the Cartels all busily engaged building medieval catapults....I am unalternably opposed to a transparent border wall.  Such a wall would give the Mexicans a front row seat on the decline of the Estados Unidos into mental spiritual & physical barbarism. This loutish spectacle will no doubt lead to a decline in church attendance all over Mexico...in sum "Bad Form" as the English Say.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

On the other hand...

IF the Kremlin wants to reduce this proud country to abject vassalage, then they are going to have to recruit better more effective stooges than Donald Trump Jr.  In a family of entitled dumbasses he stands out as utterly incapable of tying his own shoes without a team of lawyers and forensic accountants to walk him thru the process.
But...he took the Russian Bait Last Summer and seems proud of his actions and baffled by the outcry, entitled dumbass indeed.  In a larger sense if we conceptualize Russia as having returned to its ages old role as "Europe's reserve army of reaction" (to quote Karl Marx), then it follows that the reactionary class (ergo "the rich") are being targeted for recruitment by Putin's Regime. But they have a long way to go in creating a subversive cohort within the overclass if they are starting with the useless likes of Donald Trump who is useless as an asset and just stupid enough to get his father thrown out of office....

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

This is the face of a Russian Asset

He isn't some twitchy grad student, some scruffy would be revolutionary...nope he is an heir to a great fortune and as privileged and entitled as a man can be in the USA circa 2017. Likely his whole family including his Father are Russian Assets, they went hat in hand to Moscow for help in taking over the USA and clearly got it. The fact that the Russians helped the Trump's out is almost but not quite secondary to the disgraceful spectacle of soliciting help from a foreign power in a US Presidential Election.  We are on a collision course with Destiny in this Country, and We Must be Equal to Our Times.

Monday, July 10, 2017

Yesterday in the pages of the Boston Sunday Globe

Columnist Jeff Jacoby threw his hands up in the air and blamed ALL of Donald Trump's morbid excesses on the bad example set by..."Bill Clinton".
Normally this is where I jump ugly on Jeff, the Globe's resident conservative and the Local Punditariat's own laughing Young Senescence but today I'm gonna try and break it all down factually.
This column succinctly illustrates the hopeless inability of movement conservatism to organize itself as any sort of opposition to Donald Trump. Let me be clear they hate and fear his feckless pseudo populism, they justly fear his connections to Vladimir Putin and they all have first hand experience with his ineptitude and untrustworthiness....they know but won't admit sooner or later all this will bring down some terrifying crisis on the USA from within or without or likely both.
BUT as long as Trump holds the pen that'll potentially sign into law the privatization of social security, toxic tax cuts and a repeal of ObamaCare, they'll go on making a bad bargain with a bad and unreliable US President. To oppose him, means sacrificing either control of congress or the White House, their unwillingness to put either asset in play is a simple and eloquent confession of intellectual corruption i.e. "Placing ideology ahead and above The Nation".
Now, Jeff Jacoby knows this, insofar as Donald Trump is concerned he is not particularly intellectually corrupt, but he cannot confront these forces in any meaningful way, so in and the Orwellian sense of the term he retreats into complete stupidity there to sit until the storm passes or else sweeps him and his away.
Therefore given all this, waiting the GOP to "do something" is fruitless, if the issue is to be forced it must be done by others, no help can be expected  from "principled conservatives" like Jeff Jacoby.

Friday, July 07, 2017

Bipartisanship on Beacon Hill...

Consists of de facto collusion between the legislature and the governor to stiff the private sector lawyers who contract with the Commonwealth to advocate for the poor & indigent. THAT particular line item's budget ran out last month and with no new budget passed & signed, the program goeth unfunded.  This is a smoke and mirrors attempt to ease the pain of balancing the budget before years end, and it stinks as it amounts to a plethora of well heeled well connected attorney's in the legislature  decline payment for services rendered to the lawyers who still actually practice law on behalf of the vulnerable.
Like I said, it stinks.

Thursday, July 06, 2017

The Federal Parliament in Germany has concluded a

"review" that indicates that there is no "legal" barrier to prevent Berlin from negociating for "alternate nuclear umbrella" under. Dual Key Control System.
This is per today's New York Times, I'd provide a link but we all know that can't be breached unless $$ is in play.
The whispers about an independent nuclear deterrent for the EU started in Poland last year concurrent with the still mysterious deployment of brand new cruise missiles in Eastern Russia by our old friend, Vladimir Putin.
The proposal is still mightily controversial, likely at the moment a majority would oppose it in Germany...but elections are looming therein and the debate and consquent agenda can change with the speed of a Donald Trump Tweet.
And there is something Teutonically thorough, about checking to see if it's "legal" to subcontract with Paris for a new independent nuclear deterrent for the EU.
I take this as a general indication that institutional confidence in Donald Trump in Europe is already quite low and likely to go lower, and if it starts rubbing up against the sanctity of our strategic guarantees to NATO then heaven help us all.
Meanwhile the President is meeting Vladimir Putin tomorrow solo, Trump's aides are likely in a lather about what he'll say to the Russian Leader or what obligations he'll undertake. Thats a worry and real one, but I'm more concerned with what Putin is looking to get out of that meeting, does he want his consulates & diplomatic retreats reopened in the USA or is he looking to leverage Trump to further destabilize NATO?
I'll bet Macron & Merkel would like to know that themselves....

Tuesday, July 04, 2017

Monday, July 03, 2017

The President's Latest Tweet is plainly nauseating...

(he is depicting wresting "CNN" to the ground this derived from ye Olde WWE Footage) copped as it was from anonymous racist on line tirader.  The truth of the matter is, the President has been threatening CNN in the most diresome terms for a good two years no with entirely ineffectual results and there is something plainly ridiculous about a grown ass man using footage of Vince McMahon jobbing himself out to Trump to illustrate his "triumph" over cable news.
In a fair fight, Vince McMahon would wipe the floor with Trump....and that is my only take away here that the President is belligerent, ineffectual and mentally twelve years old.

Friday, June 30, 2017

Every couple of weeks...

President Trump tweets out some bloodcurdling message hinting at imminent war with Iran, Isis, North Korea or whatever....and the internet and opinion industry explodes with either joy or terror...and then...Nothing.
The trail goes cold then the Presidents tweets out something else and the cycle starts up again...so this leads me to the inevitable conclusion that the President lacks the requisite adult attention span to follow thru with any of his saber rattling....which is a bad thing should he ever be cornered in foreign affairs and sooner or later he will believe me.

This contrasts starkly with the laser like focus brought to bear by President Bush, VP Cheney and SecDef Rumsfeld in the lead up to the disastrous Iraq War II.  So I guess over the short term, there may be some safety in chaos...til that gets put to the test.

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Revenge of the PUMAs....

Two weeks ago, if you had asked me on the down low, I'd a said that Middlesex 04 special election was Rep. Sean Garballey's to lose, it looked like he had a lock on the Arlington vote, and as Arlington goes, so goes the district.
Then I started seeing all sorts of "Friedman for State Senate" lawn signs in obscure parts of Lexington, which I foolishly attributed to Jay Kauffman's almighty reach in his home town.  But last night, Seemingly against the very God's Themselves, Cindy Friedman battled back to win the democratic nomination for state senate in Middlesex 04!
She lost Arlington by a thousand votes, and carried the district by about a thousand votes! No small achievement because on paper primary turnout along in Arlington can determine the nomination in the 4th Middlesex.  Friedman did it by having disciplined cadres in the dozens who worked a relentless voter ID model all over the district, they then executed. Ruthlessly on primary day. Their plan was, to hold Sean's Lead in Arlington to single digits if at all possible, make up the loss in Lexington and run the board everywhere else, and that exactly what happened. Hell, the woman carried Billerica, a town that Trump carried back in November!
The other big winners last night were Jay Kauffman & Bob Peters up in Lexington who turned the vote out with a six to one margin for Friedman, they can credibly claim to be "QueenMakers" in every way.
Clearly Garballey was relying on his immense personal popularity in Arlington to tip the district, but that might not have been a good call in a special election with unreliable turnout in play in five cities and towns.  Garballey got into the State Legislature nine years ago on a special election, he must have felt himself on familiar ground and sometimes that can be a source of faulty decisionmaking.
However, he is young and will likely try again for this seat when it opens up down the line nothing went down here to harm his prospects going forward.
Mary Ann Stewart on the other hand, ran poorly all over the district and did no business whatsoever in her home town of Lexington, if she wants to try for higher office again its hard to see how she gets that done given her numbers.
Anyhow, the PUMA faction in Arlington put some serious skin in the game yesterday and finally came up winners,  many tears of joy were seen last night at the Masonic Temple in Arlington....

Monday, June 26, 2017

In the 4th Middlesex Special State Senate Primary Tomorrow...

The Chimes at Midnight heartily endorses Arlington. Democrat Cindy Friedman.  Its said with much justification that there is little ideological difference between the candidates in the democratic primary, so the decision gets inevitably based on other factors, experience, personality, stamina....a host of datapoints.  But for sheer zeal, ability, compassion and a rare capacity for hard work, none exceed Cindy Friedman, she has been training for this job all her life, and ought to have the opportunity to Make Her Mark in the State Senate.
Without trafficking details I've had some experience with her willingness to go the extra mile on the part of a departed relation, Friedman has indeed a range of virtues that ought to be working on behalf of everyone in the district...this I can affirm without demure.
"Friedman in 2017!" & please vote in tomorrow's primary!

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Another outcome of GA 06...

I suspect Handel's victory slightly emboldened the Senate Leadership to release an "All or Nothing at All" anti ACA Health Bill to the public...clearly McConnell & Ryan don't fear consequences at the polls in 2018.  Make no mistake this is a bad bill that will deny healthcare to millions, force those who do have it to pay more for less coverage.  Nothing drives this save a nigh autistic devotion to the twin conservative myths of rugged individualism & small government...but the "debate" (if I can call it that) is largely driven chimerical ideological notions. A lot of people may well end up suffering intensely and needlessly because the leadership of this country can't deviate from their fixed hysterical notions about public policy, to the point where they literally deny there is any "debate"  at all to say nothing of grounds for compromise.
I don't know what else to tell any of you, the wrong people have too much power and are deaf to discussion, under these circumstances saving some radical alteration in the composition of congress likely the ACA will be repealed and a veritable "health care recession" will fall upon the American People...
And when it does, this blog will be a loud loud voice for high taxes and a single payer system, we may as well "go for broke" if this thing works out as I think it will.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

A note on GA -06

I wanna take a moment to reach past all the gloaters and social media bullies and pay unashamed tribute to the democrats of Georgia's Sixth Congressional District, they fought this thing down to the last ballot, the last voter, maybe they didn't win but they sure as shit were not defeated last night.  I've passed thru a few heartbreakers of my own and it must be special disappointment to come so close in such a challenging district.
All I can advise is, Don't Listen to the Haters, they are all as useful as tits are to a bull, The Just always sleep easier when they know they have executed their Duty Come What May.


Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Mirror Imaging the Tactics of Your Opponents....

Especially when you have imputed vast and imaginary powers to said opponents, is almost always a bad idea and complete confession of impotence.

Hence James Hodgkinson shoots up a collection of GOP Congresspersons practicing for a Baseball Game and some Jobber in London tries to drive his car thru from Muslims exiting a Mosque.

It almost never works, especially when you consider the motives which are usually driven by rage, reaction formation, suppressed envy etc.


Monday, June 19, 2017

Thought for the Day

Forgive me if this is repetitive:
"We must be Equal to Our Times".

I do not expect our national nightmare to end any time soon, in fact in many ways things will get worse before they get better.  Nonetheless our progeny are depending on us to stand the watch with all the vigilance of FDR's Myrmidions or Abraham Lincoln's Dauntless Legions.  We live in a Free Republic, Republics are inherently self regenerating therefore we are collectively responsible for our own safety and our own betterment.

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Jeff Sessions' Testamony Amounted to...

"I Probably Did Nothing Wrong, But If I Did, Then I Don't Remember It".

Is it me or does this entire vile rabble exude the sheer pathetic terror of miscreants with something very serious to hide?

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

"We. Are all Targets Now"

And we have been so, for a very long time despite a pathological refusal to admit the truth. THAT is my big takeaway from today's shooting in Virginia. We've saturated our society with firearms and poured motivational vitriol into the ears of every twitchy weirdo from The Aleutians Islands to Cutler Harbor. Its a wonder this doesn't happen more often...oh wait IT DOES.
Congress ducked and ran like rats in a firestorm when one of their own Gabby Giffords got plugged in the head, they did less than nothing when Sandy Hook was turned into a pre teen graveyard...and it'll do nothing now believe me.
I'm repeating myself ad nauseum but the problem has become so widespread that I don't think any congressional action at all will even begin to resolve it. Like cowards we've waited too long and now we reap the whirlwind...whats the answer? Not sure, maybe we need to start building bulletproof redoubts in our homes or something.
Meanwhile succor to the victims....

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

If Trump's reciprocal summit with Theresa May in London

is suddenly "in doubt" it can only stand as a defacto admission that the PM's coalition stands on ver shaky ground indeed.
Hell I think a few good belligerent tweets from the So Called US President and May's Government could well fall.  I don't think Corbyn et al, want Theresa May's government to fall anytime soon, I suspect they'd like the country to get alittle rest from all these election whilst May and her Ministers get worked over well and thoroughly.
But Trump could upset that timetable, at the very least he could RUIN the Brexit Negotiations beyond hope of recovery, Theresa May already has so little work with, the wrong tweet from Donnie could compel her to "Sue for Peace" from the EU.
Hence the current indecision about Trump-in-London....

Monday, June 12, 2017

I want to take time to THANK Governor Baker and his

"Picked Finance Board at the MBTA" for holding my Green Line Commute between Park Street and Boyleston Station to an entirely manageable SIXTY MINUTES.
I thought for a while there that I'd finally kidnapped by the MBTA in a vain hope that the ransom might purchase a new and hopefully more reliable signals system for the Green Line.
Thankfully I was able to disembark and was only seventy five minutes late for work today....NICE GOING CHARLIE!!
The trouble with Charlie Baker is that he is a cowardly blockhead, he knows the MBTA's problems require revenues, maintenance and new equipment cost $$ after all.  But he persists in substituting administrative solutions to deal with systemic budget issues. In short he doesn't wanna solve the problem because that will cost money he simply doesn't want to spend.
Is anyone gonna hold him accountable for Epic Failures like Today's Red and Green Line Commutes?
Probably not...who are we kidding here after all?
Just please...DON'T give me that "we could do worse than Charlie Baker!"Rubbish,  Because right now an MBTA transit time that compares unfavorably with an ox cart seems a pretty dismal state of affairs....

Friday, June 09, 2017

Wow , from a twenty point lead to a Hung Parliament in the U.K.

I used to think you'd have to go a long long way in England to find a bigger chump in politics than David Cameron but by Ghod Theresa May surged right past him!
She went from a serviceable majority in the House of Commons to going Hat in Hand to Belfast to Preserve her Administration from dismissal. Now she clings to power at the behest of a collection of weirdo Orange Falangists in the North of Ireland who, irony of ironies are entirely PRO EU in sentiment.
If I was Jeremy Corbyn I'd promise the UK no vote of confidence over the intermediate term (unless "forced by irrevocable events") and just let this malfunctioning robot they got for a PM completely break down all by herself.
My Ghod Theresa May lost the youth vote by 44%, did she have NO IDEA those cohorts were laying for her after the Brexit referendum? Those kids a mere two years ago were beguiling themselves with the happy notion of working in start ups in the South of France now they've got to tote their resumes up and down Desolation Row in Liverpool, THE HELL they weren't gonna take that out on the Tories!
May broke an important unwritten rule in democratic politics never break a promise that the electorate is counting on, the voters in the UK were counting on a little peace and quiet in the voting booths after Brexit and Scottish Referendums...and Dumbass Theresa couldn't give them that....and they very nearly gave her "The Shove" in brute retaliation.
In other words her party's popularity depended on her pledge not to call an irritating snap election, she broke her promise and reaped a harvest of disaster, Instead of being fortified for the upcoming Brexit negotiations the UK is badly weakened.
Epic Fail All Around.
Frankly I think she'd a lost outright but for the last two terror attacks in England.  There I said it...if the conservatives wanna do any business going forward they are definitely need some new different and above all smarter cadres at the top...cuz there is blood in the water in the UK and certain cadres therein are developing a taste for it.

Tuesday, June 06, 2017

4th Middlesex State Senate Democratic Primary, Candidate's Forum, Arlington Town Hall 6-5-2017

Internet or no internet it still take ninety minutes of your life to discover there is almost no ideological differences between the three current democratic aspirants to the late Ken Donnelly's seat in the State Senate.
Where do Cindy Friedman, Sean Garballey and Mary Ann Stewart disagree....exactly nowhere folks.
Sentencing Reform a loud yes from all three, universal health care They are all all for it (but tellingly provide no plan to get there) nobody wants to raise the Charter School Cap and everyone wants to fix the funding issues at the MBTA.
This is not a field given to dissent from the broad range of concerns within the democratic party's base...neither were a lot of new ideas bruited about. If newness is in play it comes from everyone's desire to be a fresh perspective in State Senate.
Given the broad range of consensus in this particular race, I suspect a lot is going to determined by personalities, shoe leather politics, signage, mailings, name recognition and the willingness to spend money somewhat heedlessly.
So as such let me assert that Mary Ann Stewart seems a little more sure of herself behind the podium but her experience is limited to the Lexington School Committee (which admittedly isn't a bad place to start as the schools in that town seem very well run) and a lifetime of activism. In short she seems to understand a lot of the issues in this race from a point of view of the marches she has gone on and the petitions she has signed.
On the other hand, Sean Garballey has been in public life more or less since the day he graduated high school, not sure what his last private sector job was, I suspect it was literally scooping ice cream somewhere. Given that he is a very polished presence on the podium and can quote literally dozens of pieces of legislation he has either "gotten passed" or is "working on"....to hear him tell it, Sean Garballey is a One Man Great Society in the State House of Representatives. Tellingly though, how much of this legislative cataract is gonna be signed by Charlie Baker remains a silent sacerdotal mystery.
Which brings us to Cindy Friedman the Late Senator Donnelly's Chief of Staff a woman with a varied. Resume within and without the private sector, she has a strong insight into the legislative process and the mores of the State Senate in particular. She is funny and honest but very new to the game in terms of being up at the podium out in front so to speak and sometimes that shows....both her opening and closing remarks last night were read off of 3x5 cards, spiels like that ought to be memorized from the git-go.
Those are the choices in the Fourth Middlesex, given the degree of consensus this race may well come down to intangibles like name recognition, "likeability" and just plain luck.  Word on the street is, the race is very wery close with a lot of undecideds, (which is to be expected) last night's forum was thankfully well attended which might start turning some of those undecided numbers a bit.

Monday, June 05, 2017

Anyone who knows me,

knows I don't think much of off-year state democratic conventions, nothing much gets affirmed and more often or not the party ends up making obligations it can frankly so without.  So it comes as no surprise that this years's confab failed to impress me, granted a lot of anti-Trump rhetoric got aired, but everyone seems to be suffering from "gubernatorial aphasia" a weird inability to utter the name "Charlie Baker" let alone criticize him vociferously.
Listen, I yield to no one in criticizing Donald Trump, beating him up in front of the State Democratic Convention keeps the newcomers and activists charged up and thats usually a good thing....but ghod guys save some ammo for Charlie Baker, running him out of office next year is one of our tasks at least.
The sad thing is, Charlie is getting a pass from certain democrats they are resigned to perpetuating him in office as long as he doesn't interfere too broadly with our domination of the legislature or Senator Warren's tenure in office.  So its no wonder Trump gets beat down at convention time, he is he biggest broadest target.
The sad thing is, there is a case to be made against Charlie Baker, exactly what has he done about the opioid crisis, the transportation crisis, the budget shortfall and the attending revenue crisis?
To say nothing of his lack of leadership where Trump himself is concerned,...
These are all good places to start but so far no one wants to start there...


Thursday, June 01, 2017

Ah The "Trump Bump"...

Just enough prosperity for just enough of a limited cast of multinational billionaires to start exporting US Jobs to a semi despotism called the Phillipines.  But...we were warned, Paul Tsongas said a service economy could never create the transmission belts beltween the lower classes and the middle class to keep said middle class in the business of keeping the Republic Strong.
But at least we are an Exporting Nation Again, even if our Chief Export seems to be mid level financial jobs to any overseas wage sinkhole the Board of Directors can Unearth.

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Well it sure looks like

Trump has gravitated back to his notion of busting up NATO either by judicious neglect or else overt action whenever the coast is clear. Why else lecture the German's about the trade deficit & yet remain silent on Article Five of the NATO Covenant?
For all intents and purposes this is a de facto withdrawl of the formerly rock solid American Nuclear Guarantee from NATO, so it's no accident that virtually the day after the summit German Chancellor Merkel went straight to Dusseldorf and told all that they could no longer rely on the USA in all things.
THAT is not good news my friends, not with a proposal being bandied about in Brussels to arm the EU with nuclears weapons (French warheads on persumably German financed and sourced missiles)...for fifty plus years the US and NATO have kept the peace in Europe, dismantling said alliance largely at the behest of a Despot in Moscow has grave and immediate consequences for all of us.  Put it simply we don't want Germany to feel itself free to make its own way in Europe, either by capitulating to Moscow or deploying it's own cruise missiles, and we certianly don't want Paris and Berlin cooking up their own set of strategic rules in Central Europe. But as of last week we've all but gotten up from that table...I've said it before, ISIS has dynamite, Moscow has Nukes, which horde of "Barbarians" poses the closer threat?

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

You have to go a long ways in Massachusetts Politics

To find a politician more bereft of ideas than Charlie Baker.  Faced with a budget deficit, the usual infrastructure challenges, his mule-like status with the National GOP, looming cuts, revenue shortfalls, The Governor's Answer to EVERYTHING is raise 30 million for his reelection campaign, play to the center , leave the legislature unchallenged & run on his "Bipartisan Accomplishments"...

Its like Bill Weld Never Resigned....
If Charlie Baker was a sitcom he'd be "Thats so Weld!"....Nothing seems to echo in that cubed shaped head of Charlie's save the search for an opportunity to swan dive into the Charles River.
But ya know what its a proven model and it works, so far the democrats are underfunded and at loggerheads with the usual image problems, but then again a good part of Baker's plan on us doing exactly what he wants us to do....so lets at least agree not to do that eh?

Monday, May 29, 2017

4th Middlesex Special Election Forum....

The Arlington & Lexington Town Democratic Committee are hosting a candidate's forum, Monday June 5th at 7pm at Arlington Town Hall, 730 Mass Ave Arlington Ma. Doors will open at 6:30pm All three democratic candidates will be in attendance, Cindy Friedman, Sean Garballey & Mary Ann Stewart, the primary is June 27th, so this is a priceless opportunity for all three to outreach to the party's base.  Likely this will follow the standard non-League of Women Voters format, written questions from the audience and moderation regarding time limits. The forum itself will be moderated by Charlotte Golar-Richie...

Meanwhile someone spent some cashola this weekend on a phone poll in Arlington a legit phone poll at that...

Friday, May 19, 2017

Sources close to

both the Garballey & Friedman State Senate Campaigns tell me that no Republican has pulled papers or collected signatures to contest the special election for the Late Ken Donnelly's Seat. This means that no Republican will be on the General Election Ballot come July....
A couple of thoughts come to mind, this special election is pretty much "The Only Game in Town" for the GOP until next year, you'd think, given that Trump DID carry Billerica that they'd make a pro-forma effort at least even if its a notoriously safe democratic seat.
I assume that if Charlie Baker wanted a candidate in the 4th Middlesex, he'd a gotten one. Maybe he thought this meant he'd have to make a deal with some neophyte Trumpist...or else the Governor is defaulting to "Reelection Mode" and wants to discourage stirring up the democrats thus to encourage ticket-splitting come November of next year.
Of course this doesn't rule out some sort of write in campaign but those are doomed efforts in the Bay State and a pretty blatant confession of defeat.

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Roger Ailes is dead

The Diabolical Founder of Fox News was seventy seven.  In his memory at 9pm at Fox News Headquarters there will be a "twenty two gam salute" with ceremonial short skirts and then a memorial women's dash around the late Political Pontiff's Desk.
Rest in Peace....

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

It'd be funny if James Comey...

simply concocted this story about a memorandum indicating Trump asked him to drop the Flynn Investigation....because he knows disproving said story would implicate the adminstration in an illegal wiretapping felony. Ironic given the President's irrational insistence Obama bugged his phones.
Besides the mere hint of said memorandum seems to have detonated the pyrobolts holding Trump's delicate psyche together...payback is a mother ain't it?
But truly these stories are moving very fast I don't expect the crisis to end soon either....so keeping up is gonna become arbitrary and capricious around here....

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

According to the Washington Post...

Alt Right PostBoy Richard Spencer (think of him as a sort of local "General Eon O'Duffy" sans brogue) led a march in Virginia this weekend decrying the iminent removal of a Confederate Statue. "Dozens" showed up to protest bearing torches and placards which read (among other things) "Russia is Our Friend!".
Didja read that one? The Racial Right in the USA suddenly has a hard on for Moscow, I don't doubt Vladimir Putin spends a nice chunk of the Russian Taxpayers Money on all sorts of noisy freaks like these in hopes to sparking something nasty.  So clearly, Putin's Russia is back playing the part of "European Reaction's Reserve Army", to quote Karl Marx, a status that predates the Crimean War and persisted as Russian Policy right up until Nicholas & Alexandra were placed under arrest.  Up until fairly recently the Racial Right in the USA had a burning hatred for the Russians in part out of CounterMarxist Frenzy as well as antipathy for the "Vile Slavic Hordes of Muscovy."  Signs like "Russia is Our Friend" at a Racial Right Rally just tells me, someone somewhere is spending big money to make twitchy weird friends in far off places....
And that dynamic "Russia as Reaction's Firewall" is something well worth keeping an eye on....I'd love to know how far something like this goes, if indeed it is happening at all.

Monday, May 15, 2017

Comey Outski

I suppose I'm in the minority when I say I'm not surprised hat Trump found a reason to fire FBI Director James Comey he must have reasoned anyone willing to interfere in a US Election (the famous "letter to congress" the week of the election) is probably more than willing to terminate Trump's administration in due course via a thorough investigation.
I can't fault the President's "Corleonesque" logic, his honesty, goodwill and ability, yes but his logic is lowbrow and irrefutable.
That having been said, these are the actions of someone who THINKS they have something to hide, they may well not know for sure, but the possibilities are endless and frightening hence last week's example of Trumpian "Frightfulness".  We can expect more of the same because I doubt firing Comey quieted any of Donald Trump's fears...he'll make worse decisions in due course count on it.
It might be a good idea to take a giant step back here and recall we've been interfering with our own elections in deed and in spirit for quite some time now, we've been letting jobbers in rotten boroughs "vote for their own constituencies" for a generation now, we've permitted funny money to become the deciding factor in most elections and now we are experimenting with outright voter suppression. So it should be no big shock when a foreign tyrant and some Hillary hating FBI agents decide to sway the election by any means necessary.  Hell we all but beckoned them to "come on down".

Thursday, May 11, 2017

"Let All the Poisons That Lurk in the Mud, Hatch Out"

Since nuclear war initiated by the present Administration will come as no surprise to me, James Comey gettin' the old heave-ho by Trump is hardly any shock at all. Comey did his level best to help Trump into office last October and his reward was to get shown the door allegedly by Trump's personal bodyguard no less...but then Comey went into business with Trump last October and got screwed over thoroughly like ALL of Trump's private sector creditors, partners and investors...why should Flynn or Comey or possibly General McMaster's fate be any different?
What surprises me is that people are surprised....y'all were warned in no explicit terms this would happen....
But let me put this out there, Trump is no clever three dimensional chess player, he is impulsive and secretive, and truly based on this latest outrage, he has a lot to hide.  But that isn't a confession of strategic genius by any means I don't think Trump understands truly the danger he has brought down on himself, I think he believes that his own luck and impulsive wits will master any situation. ANd if that is the case "Hubris" is really in charge of the USA down to custody of the nuclear launch authority and no that is not a good thing.

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

A Gruesome Prediction...

In the wake of the Fields-Bolanos murders down in the Seaport District we are gonna hear a lot of loud advocacy in favor of the death penalty from Governor Baker.  All you democrats out there be prepared for a lot of tepid but insistent demagoguery from our tepid insistent Governor....
Just remember the last time it was before the legislature in the 1990's it lost by a single vote, and election years tend to make people crazy around here.
I tell you I can just see the TV commercials with Texeira's battered zombie face all over them....

Monday, May 08, 2017

Just as I suspected

The Firefighters Local 1297 endorsed Sean Garballey for State Senate today, their absence was pretty conspicuous at the Friedman kick off yesterday, so I am not surprised.
Its ironic because the Late Senator Donnelly was fire chief in Lexington and whatever commitments he undertook on behalf of First Responders were probably in the main executed by his loyal chief of staff, Cindy Friedman.
But at any rate firefighters were a good chunk of Donnelly's "ground game" back in 2008, no doubt they'll loom large in Garballey's calculations now.
Its a seven week campaign plus a few days not much time to do thorough voter ID a lot turns on big billboards, endorsements, mailings etc...its given the exceptional and truncated nature of the race the outcome could well turn on quaint retrograde factors such as that.
So its "game on" most definitely....

Off & Running

Cindy Friedman piled into the democratic state senate primary for the Fourth Middlesex at a well attended event at Arlington's Venerable Elk's Club.  There were a lot of young people in attendance which is fairly unusual for an Arlington off election year event but then the Spartans have been murmurring about "Trump Multiplier Effect" for several months now.  Lexington's well tenured State Rep Jay Kauffman is acting as co-chair of the campaign, State Senator Will Brownsberger is apparently doing a Friedman fundraiser, Anne Paulsen, Jeff Thielman, Jim DiTulio, Local Chair Aimee Coolidge and numerous other notable Spartans were in attendence, their common trait they are excellent political organizers. Citizen Friedman clearly has some outreach into the incumbent class of politicians...If there was a theme to the announcement it was "Revenge of the PUMAs", they clearly absorbed their setback from Last November and are rested and ready for new adventures.  Hillary Clinton's Local Imperial Guard should not be dismissed lightly they've won some lost some but their drive, determination and SKILL is undiminished. Clarissa Rowe and Company will run Sean Garballey a very close race when all is said and done.
I didn't see any representatives of the public sector unions at this event, that is significant, Friedman is running as Ken Donnelly's personally approved sucessor and part of Ken's electoral success was built around a strong volunteer base among police/firefighter.
Politically I think the plan is simple close to within three points of Sean Garballey in Arlington and then sweep Lexington, that mayb well be enough to tip the nomination. The presence of Mary Ann Stewart, a former Lexington School Committee on the primary ballot is a sure sign that someone wants to keep the vote in that particular town divided and unconcentrated.
As for Citizen Friedman, she is personable enough, even funny at times, but she is new to being at the podium so to speak, she needs to cut down her tendency for multiple examples and tighten her pitch a bit.  The debates ought to be spirited affairs, as a campaigner Garballey is no slouch he is one of these "up at six am run all day long and into the night" type politicians.  What ideological points said debates will turn on is unknown at the moment, Garballey & Friedman probably agree on much and disagree on little in the Main, their two way debate may well hinge on questions of gravitas and experience....
The Game is Afoot!

Friday, May 05, 2017

I have friend

(I do have them, the wiser of this small cohort never ever read this blog)....and he is a cancer survivor, he vociferously asserts that the ACA (aka "ObamaCare") saved his life, covered his chemo, his extensive and ongoing rehab, got him the special nutrition he needs to live, all of it.
Now yesterday with the weary connivance of many many GOP "moderates" in the US House (a group that is as useful as tits are to bull in the patois of my youth), Paul Ryan FINALLY rammed thru a ACA "repeal and replace" bill and dropped it on the US Senate for good measure.
The bill is by all early indications a disaster that'll likely shorten my friend's life by many many years if the US Senate has the temerity to pass said measure.
So my question is, can we get the Middlesex County DA to indict Speaker Ryan for attempted murder? Because thats what AHCA is, murder in the last decree, higher premiums, less care more dead citizens....
Failing that since Ryan resolved the US House into a Huge "Board of Medicine" then can we sue him for Malpractice? Making medical decisions without a license ought to be actionable in a Civil Court I would think...besides you know the twitchy sumbitch doesn't have medical malpractive insurance (his insolent and vile aides likely have never thought of it)...so we could potentially clean him out but good.
All kidding aside I have a friend whose life hangs in the balance and there had better start being some dire electoral consequences for such a pretty pass....

Thursday, May 04, 2017

Word on the Street is...

that Lexington School Committee Member, Mary Ann Stewart has pulled papers to run for the democratic nomination for state senate in the 4th Middlesex special election.  She joins the Late Senator Donnelly's Chief of Staff Cindy Friedman and Arlington State Rep Sean Garballey in vying for said sinecure, so far no republican has pulled papers, the deadline to pile in is May 16th.
At a first glance, Stewart likely impedes Friedman's ability to build an out-of-Arlington coalition to counter Garballey's name recognition, & alleged fundraising edge.   I think it likely the Friedman campaign was hoping the endorsement of Lexington Rep Jay Kauffman would help bind said community to her cause, its also a pretty transparent division of the "women's vote" leading me to wonder exactly how a Lexington School Committee Member is gonna raise the 100K+ needed to be credible in this race and who encouraged her to run?
Otherwise Stewart's issues seem decorously boilerplate, climate change, education, infrastructure a woman's right to choose....etc etc, nothing new but quite frankly the three candidate so far differ in very little save perhaps their utterly intangible and unmeasurable leadership potential.

Tuesday, May 02, 2017

As if there is nothing else going on in the world...

worthy of a front page berth, The Boston Globe piles in ginnin' up Congressman Seth Moulton for President in 2020. They cite his youth, energy, articulate style, anti-Trump bona fides and his status as a....(sound the forlonr hunting horns) moderate.
Waaa-al Ah Swan before we git all misty eyed over Moulton's Moderation, just remember he is a "Massachusetts Moderate" and that is, at the end of the day, nothing that would pass as a middle-of-the-roader in Alabama or Florida.
But lets face it, Seth isn't dumb enough to run against Charlie Baker next year and Ed Markey's plans for 2020 aren't clear yet, so by process of elimination the Globe came up with "Moulton in 2020"...
Of course his office officially denied any such ambitions (for what that is worth which is nothing really). Nonetheless this does spotlight the Boston Globe's enduring status as a newsdaily in favor of restoration really any restoration at all when push comes to shove. Dealey Plaza went down fifty four years ago come this November but Morrissey Blvd goes on searching for a Presidential White Knight from Massachusetts, someone who'll bring the Big Job Back Home where they can keep an eye on it....to that end they've hyped everyone from Mike Dukakis to Mitt Romney.  Its a little sad like an aging Uncle's eccentric diet or something, to me, it seems clear that a Massachusetts Home Address is TOXIC for a serious presidential candidate but the Globe just goes on pretending it's 1962 and we are all Equals in the Sight of the Electoral College...
Seriously they need to stop flogging this equine skeleton, and get going on a nice thorough Spotlight Series expose, like maybe why the roads in wealthy antebellum Belmont are universally abominable...rutted & potholed like the Sea of Tranquillity?

Monday, May 01, 2017

I guess Trump's Plan to get rid of Kim Jong Un

is to alternate bellowing and cooing until he sues for peace.  This morning we were on the brink of war, this afternoon the So Called President called Comrade Kim a "Smart Cookie" someone with whom he might be able to negotiate....oh sure cuz Japan, South Korea, China et al really want those two in a room alone making commitments....
But I digress, nothing will come of the threats or the entreaties, Trump will get rid of Kim's Bandit Regime the way he got rid of the ACA....oh...wait....

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Sorry Folks

but you can't compromise Ann Coulter's First Amendment Rights without Compromising Your Own. Listen, I hate the bitch as much as the rest of you, she is particularly detestable since she makes such good money being a "controvore" (ergo a deliberate exuder of mental excrement)....but be that as it may, she has a right to speak on the Campus of UC Berkeley.  I realize college students think they have so much more to lose in the current political environment, and indeed they do, but shutting her event down doesn't effect Coulter in the slightest...only rigorous peaceful engagement Can alter that equation...And that is what has gone missing here.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Trump got schooled this week

He tried to force the democrats to help fund his "AntiMexican Wall" with the threat of a Government Shutdown, Pelosi & Schumer didn't fall for it, and predictably Trump folded.
Kudos for the democrats for hanging together in face of adversity, we could all use more of that I am sure.  Otherwise this yet another historic lesson, Congress can Blackmail a US President if that body is sufficiently determined or the issue is important enough, but it remains difficult for a sitting US President to do likewise and the same to Congress...even the so called much buffetted minority party.
Trump doesn't get that, because he has almost no discernable political skills and he isn't gonna develop any either if I am any judge.
No, he'll retaliate by ramping up enforcement in cities and localities, more round ups,  more punishment of those what can't fight back, more mayhem and maybe a nice tasty stand off with a sanctuary city. In that way, he will build his wall and it'll be a nasty one, look for it.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

I can infer from Today's News

That the Governor put 78 million in the current budget to help fix UMass Boston's dangerously dilapidated underground garage as proof positive he is gonna track back to the Center in Campaign 2018. A mere year ago news that The Boston Campus had a public safety danger that put coeds in mortal peril of plunging thru the Earth's crust would have ellicited no reaction from Charlie Potatoes other than the admonition that UMass "slender down" and "live within its' means" etc.
But that was pre-Trump and the Governor wants to run as a split-the-difference moderate so badly he is practically lactating the milk of human kindness....
So pay heed though, Baker is never going to be much of an anti-Trump factor in the National GOP, but he'll play the centrist card to the last deal of the deck.  As democrats we need to remember how much of this is truly a feckless pose as we go forward into Campaign 2018.

Monday, April 24, 2017

If I read the rags rightly

Rep Lombardo (GOP Billerica) is not running for State Senate in the 4th Middlesex Special Election, all that money spent on a push poll fer nothing...is Charlie Potatoes gonna give this one a pass? If I was the GOP I would not, the potential for mischief on the cheap seems too tempting. Then again the State Senate is getting to be a costly venue for a two year term on Beacon Hill, there are those who can't raise the money or simply don't want the mishaugas.
Will the General Election be contested ? Stay tuned folks!
Meanwhile CIndy Friedman (The late Ken Donnelly's redoubtable Chief of Staff) has piled in for sure and racked up the endorsement of Lexington's State Rep Jay Kaufman...thats important because with the democratic vote seemingly divided in Arlington the importance of racking up good totals in Lexington Burlington, Woburn & Billerica becomes paramount. Normally sweeping the democratic vote in Arlington & Lexington is tantamount to nomination and theoretically sufficient turnout in Arlington alone can get you the State Senate Nomination, but that likely won't be the case in this go round....like I said, stay tuned!

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Marine Le Pen

an alleged blonde and pronounced falangist, has made to the Presidential Run Off in France come June on a platform calling for a public ban on hejabs and yarmulkes. Apparently the yarmulke must go because everyone must make sacrifices in the our common apocalyptic death struggle with "Islamic Terrorism".
So I'm wondering, is she gonna ban the Nun's Habit as well? Commonality of Sacrifice and all, and what about turbans, the Papal Mitre or will she force Shaolin Monks to start growing their hair again? So if the Pope visits the Elysee Palace "President Le Pen" will snatch the white skullcap off his noggin eh?
I know I'm going for laughs here but it's sort of inevitable, the one thing serious authoritarian populists always lack is a sense of humor...remember that.

Friday, April 21, 2017

The rumor is....

That Cindy Friedman Ken Donnelly's uber - able Chief of Staff is about to pile into the Middlesex Four Special State Senate Election. This is per State House News and thus a rumor (til some one calls me  at least). This would be Friedman's first campaign "out front" after years of either managing campaigns or assisting governance in the State House so she at once, fresh and yet experienced as well.  She is also "in good" with the local PUMAs who are still growling around their fires and sharpening their assegais looking for a fight to win.  Eight years ago the quote I heard on a State Senate Fight was 110K, likely that has gone up and if Friedman is a serious candidate it comes with a mute indication that she too can raise the cash and quickly for this race....key word their quickly since the timeline terminates on all this next summer.  This also means that the fabled "Arlington Vote" will likely be divided on primary day, which in turn may embolden potential democratic candidates from Lexington-Burlington-Billerica-Woburn.

Let the games begin!

Scott Brown cashes in his Chips

and gets nominated US Ambassador to New Zealand....Initially I guffawed because I just knew that the famously unintelligent Scott Brown probably needed an embassy that didn't require him to hire translators or perish-the-thought, learn a new language.
But then I thought supposedly there is a mute trend among the overclass to secure real estate in New Zealand due to its relative distance from notional radioactive fallout should nuclear war break out.  Who knows maybe Scott knows something we don't....and if he does can he please take his best and most loyal local apologist, Howie Carr with him....and let me go down with the ship with dignity while they cower in the Murdoch Family's palacial bunker?

Thursday, April 20, 2017

O'Reilly Outski at Fox News

for apparently being far too salacious a bully for a conservative "news" network built and administered by salacious bullies who select their leggy newsreaders on the basis of their photographs.
As I' ve said before hypocrisy is a cumbersome unreliable weapon indeed, especially in these post hypocritical times we live in....but O'Reilly has been driven out and largely because he preached patriarchy and puritanism and lived prurience and perversion 24-7, so yay us.
Nonetheless, discourse and debate are dead in this country (and whats worse they died before this internet thingie got big as well) so rest assured "the din will continue"....with different voices but even louder to be sure.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Something worth remembering in respect of the Middlesex #4 Special State Senate Election...

Arlington State Rep Sean Garballey has had the advantage of occupying the safest seat in the Great & General Court, but he hasn't had to fight a seriously contested general election at all for the span of his incumbency.  But then I can say that about almost any other democrat currently tempted to pile into the race....so all and sundry are hereby admonished to drop any notions that "nomination is tantamount to election".
That push poll yesterday (via phone) was a clear early warning to democrats that the GOP plans to drop some money and effort into this race, indeed its the only game in town at the moment, Charlie Baker has plenty of money on hand and knows where to find more. Flipping  a State Senate Seat is a way to get toned up for 2018...don't laugh Scott Brown got in thru a special election...it very certainly can happen here.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

An outfit called "MRC" has started push polling

the 4th Middlesex State Senate District not even 2 hours after democrat and Arlington State Rep Sean Garballey announced for the Late Ken Donnelly's vacant seat!  Said poll heavily trafficked Garballey's name and cited an alleged vote to make Massachusetts a "sanctuary state" (which it has been since the Revolutionary War as far as I am concerned) as well as his supposed support of the recent legislative pay raise.
Wow that was quick...This isn't the first time the Fourth Middlesex was push-polled on behalf of the GOP, the Late Ken Donnelly was similarly trafficked last fall on the road to an Easy Win in November.
In sum is it possible the GOP or any of it's outliers think they can do business in one of the democratic party's allegedly safest seats?
Maybe they do, or maybe they just have no other outlet for their mischief this year, either way local democrats should take heed.

Monday, April 17, 2017

I can personally attest that

That the BPD, the Commonwealth & da Feds take elaborate precautions to ensure a safe & secure Boston Marathon, never moreso than in the aftermath of 2013's tragedy.
I should know, I'm sitting in cafe a bare fifty yards from the Finish Line and I am basically surrounded by police officers including a large contingent of motorcycle cops.
All that is fine....but the flyover this morning of fighter jets is pure Terrorist Porn and only served to remind me that the granite and steel behemonth I work in, likely designed to resist Luftwaffe Bombardment...probably couldn't stand up to today's ordinance....
But thats a fanciful ideation indeed....but we live in fanciful times yo.

Thursday, April 13, 2017

I see Governor Baker

To a seventy five percent approval rating.  This in the teeth of an intractable opioid crisis, our increasingly dilapidated state infrastructure, and MBTA held together by luck & chicken wire, the usual unimpressive appointments and Baker's own intangible status as a political mule with no natural constituency within the GOP to speak of.
But Charlie Baker is good at framing the debate in terms of a low set bar, there he is truly a genius, people expect little of him, he delivers still less and his polling skyrockets.
Sooner or later though, that low bar gets raised, suddenly, and then politicians like Baker are in trouble...but that requires events to take a hand, and so far, events have favored Baker. Again that can change in an instant, the MBTA could have a catastrophic foul-up, Donald Trump could decide to make an example of him...any number of things. And keep in mind...things are not quite going Charlie's way despite his polling, I think for example The Governor would Piss on a Live Sparkplug to keep Geoff Diehl OFF the GOP senatorial primary ballot....he must have legit nightmares of Trump coming to campaign for his favorite local apologist maybe a nice campaign event on campus somewheres....
But we as democrats and liberals can't let events dictate our decisions we must make the best fight we can polls or no polls with a united integrated effort everywhere....strength in numbers, strength in depth is the only way forward.

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Of course Passengers are being beaten bloody and bodily dragged off US Airline Flights,

They are consumers not citizens in the eyes of United Airlines, and core concept of the rigid and heirarchical consumer producer relationship is "caveat emptor". The consumer - producer relationship furthermore is entirely undemocratic in character and will always remain so.
For a generation now, our status as citizens has been overtly degraded into mere consumerism in both the public and private spheres, it colonizes political rights and obligations and even degrades our political discourse (expl "Brand Romney") to an appalling degree.  I take the Radical Jeffersonian View that "inalienable rights" take precedence in all relationships, they must be respected when one is voting, buying an airline ticket or being vetted as Cabinet Secretary. Granted this is a retrograde notion with heavy tinges of William Jennings Bryan to it, but without this most necessary Jeffersonian infusion aggreived passengers on our airlines can look forward summary execution if they don't obey an officer's orders.
Just remember, we didn't get to this pretty pass because the Institutions are so Powerful, Irresistible and Corrupt, we let them do it, OUR PASSIVITY ALONE incited them to degrade us all to the status of cattle-with-credit-cards.
As far as I am concerned this passenger "stood his ground" he wasn't armed and he doesn't have a million wingnuts at his back, but he was asserting himself as a citizen while the airline simply treated him like a consumer with all the abuse and violence that entails.

Monday, April 10, 2017

Let the record show

that the Ex Governor of Alabama, Robert Bentley MD (R)....that pathetic philanderer, that tepid rake...that guy was the Alabama Christian Coalitions "Statesman of the Year"!!??
Will he at least have the decency to send the damn thing back?
Because we are officially in the "Hypocrisy is Dead" era, and if we are, then at least we should grant refunds!
I mean the guy's politics was crude xian dominionism even for Alabama...doesn't anyone think there is a necessary link between his repressive politics and his stunted withered gruesome libido....??

Friday, April 07, 2017

A Clintonesque Cruise Missile Cannonade

on Syria, undertaken for the usual feckless impulsive reasons by President Trump....all on behalf of a benighted and oppressed people he has been trying to exclude from the USA since he was sworn in.
Why else would Assad use nerve gas on those poor bastards? Hell we practically waved him in, last week Trump said we were resigned to The Supreme Opthalmolocrat's Hold on Power in Damascus...after all Assad is only nerve gasing people the US President hates and fears.  I myself can't believe this atrocity was undertaken without Russian connivance and tacit approval...because for the moment it'll bolster the Q Rating of their Mark in the White House and make Assad all the more dependent on Moscow...if such a thing is possible, advantage, Putin, IMHO.
Hell we daintily warned the Russians the missiles were coming via the hotline and their response was entirely Macchiavellian, they are now gonna help strengthen Syrian defense to prevent such attacks in the future.
Again, advantage Putin he must be laughing at us right now.

Thursday, April 06, 2017

Bannon Out at the NSC...

although supposedly Trump can let him tag along down in the situation room when and if it comes time to Empty the Missile Silos.  From what I've read this is a pretty big coup for General McMaster who also get the JCS, the CIA back to the table and routed a few cabinet departments to his "in tray". Pretty deft move but I'm sure Bannon had some legal exposure on several fronts so McMaster just wanted him far out of the room when the Work Boot Drops.

Wednesday, April 05, 2017

Bill O'Reilly

is finally coming under some serious advertising pressure after seemingly years of alleged sexual harrassment allegations.  Mercedes Benz has dumped his ass on Fox News and some other outfits have similarly bailed.  "Weaponizing Shame" is always a cumbersome and time consuming option when it comes to an odious hypocrite especially one who preaches patriarchy & puritanism and practices insolent licentiousness...as has been alleged with regards to O'Reilly. In fact, its a shaming process that usually only works when a great deal of money is either taken off the table or is profligately spent to crush a target in the court of public opinion.
Left unaddressed is the larger issue that Fox News is clearly a sort of a wingnut wet-tee-shirt contest run by gruesome old oinkers who use leggy news readers as cannon fodder to hook in an aging & belligerant audience. Which is only the physical manifestation of an even larger issue that  a captioned wingnut can preach puritanism and live debauchery for years and get paid for it and never get called to account unless someone is willing to devout time and money to shaming them.
Meanwhile the rest of the hypocrite disport like Satyrs loose among the virgins....color me unimpressed and weary of the whole farce. If O'Reilly goes down great, but there is a worse sexist twerp waiting in the wings for his "big chance"...

Tuesday, April 04, 2017

State Senator Donnelly's wake...

will be this Friday, April 7th, 4 to 8pm in the Auditorium of Arlington Town Hall 700 Massachusetts Ave .  Undoubtedly this will be a well attended wake, with many notables within and without politics paying their respects, the Man Made Friends in his public career, I can think of no better epitaph.
It'll be a political wake of the old school, but let us foremost recall that The Family is Mired in Sorrow, bring comfort one and all.

Monday, April 03, 2017

Sad News from the Fourth Middlesex,

Of the untimely death of State Senator Kenneth Donnelly of Arlington after a long battle with cancer.  In life he was a loud unreconstructed Hubert Humphrey style democrat, unabashedly liberal, fond of labor unions, a tireless advocate for every dispossessed and downtrodden citizen on the map and a "gem of a man" or so it was said up and down Arlington.  He will be missed very dearly, he was a former firefighter and cancer that pitiless slayer of firemen finally got him.  If some good comes of this tragedy then if might issue from an increased awareness of the special carcinogenic risks run by firefighters nationwide.
He was a friendly man, avuncular, never anything but honest and aboveboard in all his personal dealings with me, his staff rendered yeoman service to my family when my late father needed full time care outside the home.  Would that fate had been more discriminating.

Saturday, April 01, 2017

VP Mike Pence...won't dine alone with any woman other than his own wife

Its a sense of ethics that died out roughly about the time Teddy Roosevelt left office in 1909...but geez what a way for the Veep to rebuke His Own Mother Eh?

Well what of it? Given his 10th century approach to gender issues what woman would ever want to dine with him other than that sky-grifting wife he's got?

Friday, March 31, 2017

To Read Yahoo.Com's news feed

is to be told that Putin's Russia is fifty to hundred years ahead in all aspects of weapon's research and development, they have missiles that fly at five thousand miles an hour, death rays that can obliterate the Moon and likely time machine technology that can make us all cease to exist at any moment.
I've come to the conclusion that "news" defined here as "who what when where why & how" died about ten years ago....and no one wants to man up and admit it.
Just remember one this Facts, NEVER cease to exist, factual reportage can be obliterated....but events go on conspiring to make fools of us all.

Thursday, March 30, 2017

Crazy Christy Mihos, RIP

Late word comes to us of the untimely death of "Crazy" Christy Mihos local convenience store magnate and perpetual political hawt mess.    Mihos was for a while Shakespeare's own "imp of fortune", a early and loud critic of the Big Dig (I mean that literally, Christy had no discernable "indoor voice" he shouted seemingly at everyone), he put Mitt Romney "Back on the Map" in 2002, he broke with the GOP in 2006 then tried for the GOP gubernatorial nomination in 2010...
He was populist insurrectionist waaa-ay before it was popular, but like a lot of those guys, he paid a price, a cringeworthy divorce a dire reversal in his financial fortunes, a sad self off of assets then...cancer.
Its a political career full of sudden violent shocks, perpetual drama, loud oathes, louder rejoinders, and it could only go down in Massachusetts, Land of the Free, Home of the Rave.
I made fun of Christy when he was out on the stump, but unlike Donald Trump who is Fraud Incarnate it is important to recall that Mihos was trying in his own blustering wingnutty way to spare the taxpayers getting stuck with the bill for the Big Dig.  But for me his fabled craziness starts with his naive belief that Mitt Romney was gonna resolve that problem sans any burden to the citizenry.....
Say what you like he was a populist mercurial and loud, he made no apologies, he was no breaker of proverbs he will give the Devil His Due.

Monday, March 27, 2017

BTW Kudos to Nancy Pelosi

She held her fractious caucus together, keep the media byplay to a minimum and surrendered no votes to the ACA Repeal on Friday, I promise you democratic solidarity was a big reason why Trump and Ryan went down in flames.  When you consider how hard it is to hold any US House democratic caucus together this is no small achievement and a example of that ineffable quality called "Leadership" from Rep. Pelosi.
She's had a bad couple of years so its nice to see she still has a few good haymakers saved up....

Saturday, March 25, 2017

ACA lives another day...

GOP Infighting doomed the bill forcing Paul Ryan to cancel a vote he and the White House were sure to lose.
Sucks to you guys for sure.
Trump's reaction was typically pathological, he blamed the democrats (who control exactly nothing in DC at the moment) before mumbling something about getting democrats to "join him" and producing a future healthcare bill.
Good no wonder Nancy Pelosi was smirking at her press conference she's been called every name in the book down thru the years and likely saw her last chance to be House Speaker go down the tubes last year....so watching her tormenters and opponent murderously brawl amongst themselves must have been precious and lovely indeed.

Friday, March 24, 2017

A Lot Rides on the House Vote Today...

Paul Ryan's ego and reputation for one thing, if he cannot leverage Trumpcare Bill to Passage then he looks like an impotent schnook after years and years of big talk about "repeal and replace".
If it passes though, (and passage in the Senate still sounds doubtful) Congress will be willfully creating a native class of lumpen unisured "refugees" and if that doesn't spark some form of mass consciousness at the polls then this country is surely doomed.
If it doesn't pass then we are faced with a far more dangerous and ambiguous situation (those two words are the very crux of "Brand Trump"), a brutish hostile US Congress and President are compelled to administer a law they've sworn up and down to repeal....I doubt the administration will waste any time to make sure the ACA is badly enforced and a burden in extremis to all and sundry.
Under those circumstances repeal is oddly enough the better option for Us Liberals, we can then self transition completely to the "single payer" option (the same one all of Congress Has to this day) having tried a private sector centric approach.
Keeping ACA on the books yet badly administered muddies the waters policy wise, I am assuming here that no matter what healthcare is going to become a very controversial issue over the intermediate terms costs and burdens will rise services will be restricted.
On the other hand it'll just be fun to watch Ryan try to spin an abject defeat today....he has it coming to him believe me.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

London...

Terrorists are a classic contradiction, the successful practitioners all adapt seamlessly to the very societies they are so desperate to disrupt & destroy.  They can identify "soft targets" with malignantly shrewd insight and secure such weaponry as said society makes available to them. That and they have the secrecy mania and advantage of surprise, and that in turn works best of all if this is a one-off lone wolf style attack.  If something like today's tragedy had gone down in the USA the perp would've had easily some large magazine'd carbine or a pistol with a similar capability....again its a question of the weapons easiest to procure and this time it was a hunting knife and a fast car.
Attacks like this are gonna become the norm, low tech one off murderous actors, largely trained on line in a sort of "homicidal MOOC", mass action on hard targets seems largely denied these people so the action gets automatically exported to the streets where determined self destructive recruits can rack up a few casualties and seize the headlines.
In some ways its a confession of sheer impotence, a well programmed hidden asset largely wasted in bloodthirsty street theatre...but I'm sure the news media will see it all very differently.

My Heart Goes Out to the Victims...As Always.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Predictably...

Charlie Baker and the MBTA backed down from their scheme last week to shut down the Commuter Rail on Weekends. I think it's hilarious that the Boston Globe was able to cite a ridership of some ten thousand every weekend, a simple statistic that somehow eluded our spreadsheet worshipping Governor.
But this is the new normal count on it, Baker and his handpicked Financial Board are gonna constantly be on the prowl for new ways to cut services and reliability while forcing the ridership to pay more...outrage saved us this time, the next instance though, maybe not so much.
Which just tells me what a "Big Sneak" (as my white haired old Irish Mother would say) the current Governor truly is, he hasn't got a plan he dares enunciate without strong opposition so he goes around in the dead of night looking to chisel off a piece here and there.
Its a lot of things, but it is Not Leadership....

Monday, March 20, 2017

Does Anyone Out There Think....

Deutsches Chancellor Angela Merkel had a good summit in DC this week? Trump basically called her a mark for refugees and terrorists on the campaign trail and a military moocher to her face. He wouldn't even shake hands with her...churlishness indeed.
I suspect that Snub may pay Merkel some short term electoral dividends going forward...at the same time she does need him erect and nominally functioning at the EU Economic Summit in July although based on last week's performance she might be conjuring with finding a pretext to delay the whole mishaugas.
Experiencing Trump's unreliability up front must be giving Merkel second thoughts about that much rumored proposal out of Poland to arm the EU with it's own nuclear deterrent.  Thats a lot of political and diplomatic ground to cover but after this summit its must look like a better bet for the buck with an erratic aggrieved US President presiding over NATO. A lot depends on the outcome of the French Presidential Election next month (Merkel would have to come to an agreement with nuclear armed France to "subcontract" a nuclear umbrella for the EU AND security post Brexit England's tacit connivance as well) as well as German's Federal Elections this Fall.  Hell Paris and Berlin could be in the hands of angry populist irredentists come the fall....or a collection of deeply offended integrationists with aspirations of nuclear independence....

AM I the only person in Massachusetts

that is plainly astonished at the revelation that the MBTA and Charlie Baker's Financial Board thereof, has no means whatsoever to estimate the ridership on the commuter rails on weekends???  I thought this was "Governor Spreadsheets" we are talking about??  This is his managerial genius at work? If so gimme back the ineptoid antics of Jane "Jingle Money" Swift.
Ah but I think we all know what is really going on here, its not that the Governor et al, can't estimate weekend commuter rail ridership, its that they don't want to....since the real goal is to shut down said branch of Public Transport as a cost saving measure.
Which largely forfills the predicition I made two years ago, that Baker's stewardship of the MBTA means higher prices for lesser service...and right here and now, we are getting that fabled decrease in service.
So I am in turn forced to reiterate my original notion is that the only way the ridership (the MBTA's much abused constituens) can get control of this situation is to get into some sort of a defacto alliance with the Carmen's Union. Yeah I know its a forlorn hope but it's likely the only short term solution that leaves all of use forced to pay more for less deliverables.

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Anyone notice

that via the public prints in Today's Globe, that Jeff Jacoby puts on a Fetish Mask and dances ecstatically around a shopworn stone idol he called "Free Market Healthcare"?
Has Jeff's Rabbi ever taken him aside and discussed the columnist's routine disdain for The First Commandment whenever he starts groveling and venerating this False God Called "The Free Market"....serious book worshippers would call it blasphemy, I'm sufficiently broadminded to call it sickening (no pun intended).

Friday, March 17, 2017

Thought while shaving....

Lynda Carter (star of stage and screen and when she wasn't Wonder Woman, Ms. Carter probably longed to be Cher) could go up to New Hampshire in about 18 months, proclaim herself "a petitioning centrist democrat" promise all and sundry a balanced budget with no new taxes or tapping social security, & likely be in the top three poll-wise before she even rents her storefront on Elm Street Manchester.
And for this degraded state of politics where mere name recognition is necessary to start at the top of the game, we can thank Donald Trump.
As for Carter, again thanks to Trump she doesn't need to prove herself in any other office she can just start up with the tweeting and be off to the races. Believe me, on paper she looks great, she used to be a GOP stalwart (she can utter that bromide "I didn't leave the GOP, it left me" with unctuous sincerity I am sure), an actress a TV pitchwoman, her second marriage is rock solid and her kids decorously photogenic.
On the other hand, Occam's Razor strongly suggests that Trump's Presidency will either end in a series of mushroom clouds or else abject failure and perhaps the current vogue for populist celebrity politics will have crested and waned.
But I was Lynda Carter I'd make a few quiet phone calls, ya never know....Just don't hire John Podesta.

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

I think we can all agree that

"Prison Rules Suck".

They do, they are uncivilized and more importantly reduce all transactions into brutal zero-sum game calculations.
So I have to laugh a little bitterly when I see that Rachel Maddow tried to gin up a "release" of Trump's 2005 Tax Return last night and got trolled heavily on Social Media for violating The President's alleged privacy.
This is the same crowd that bayed on and on for Barack Obama's birth certificate back in the day....But Like I Said, "Prison Rules Suck".
Anyway the American People have a perfect right to say all of Trump's Tax Returns going back to the days of Tumbledown Dick and the English Protectorate if there is probable cause to believe a security risk inhabits the Oval Office.
After all our right to survive as a free people ought not conflict with his right to privacy, assuming Trump can man up and release the returns but he won't for whatever reason and as far as I'm concerned until then, He Has Something to Hide!

Monday, March 13, 2017

The Globe is Ginnin' Up Disatisfaction Among

Senior democrats with respect to the emerging field of Gubernatorial Challenges to Charlie Baker.
Fair enough, its gonna be a difficult year and the usual collection of big money and or big names are giving a hard uphill race a quiet pass.  I also think some PUMAs within the state democratic party are trying to tempt AG Healey into the race despite her assurance a week ago she was running for reelection in 2018 and nothing else.
Frankly if Healey wants to be Governor  then 2018 is likely not gonna be her year, moreover she might wanna seriously reconsider whether the AG's Office is a proper platform from which to leap to something better.  I think something like four AG's in my lifetime have gone for the corner office and come up short...hell the only one who managed to move up was Ed Brooke and he had the common sense to run for the US Senate.
You make enemies as AG, especially in this state where the office tends to be sort of de facto "quality control" over chiselers in the legislature.
The off year convention in June up in Lowell should be interesting, I'm sure Healey will get intensely lobbied to reconsider by the usual suspects I urge her to resist the temptation she'd only be sacrificing herself in vain and opening up the AG's Office needlessly.
I still say we need someone "outside the box" who can strongly self finance, either gender will do if they can demonstrate some moxie.

Thursday, March 09, 2017

GOP Soreheads and assorted

Tantrumps are grousing at Governor Baker in the wake of his announcement last week to the effect that the State will make up any funding shortfalls to Planned Parenthood should the Feds defund said group.
Waaa-al I tell yuh, Charlie Potatoes can say all sorts of things but whether he does it is whole different matter.
But true to form, The Governor has waltzed his way back to the center (accompanied by the usual sighs of relief from the Boston Globe) after his twin ballot question debacles (charter schools and legalized pot) last fall.
Mind you, nobody expects Baker to get "primaried" next year, the GOP bench on the right in The Commonwealth is preposterously thin...although if these guys were dead set on challenging Baker they'd likely need someone who can self finance & raise hell, and likely there just isn't another Donald Trump to be had here in Massachusetts.
Advantage Baker, for now.

Tuesday, March 07, 2017

Rumors are cropping up to the effect

that the European Union is considering deploying it's own nuclear deterrent entirely independent of the very explicit strategic guarantees the US has issued to NATO practically since Day One.
The modalities of such a move are relatively simple, the Union could "subcontract" a nuclear umbrella of its own from France (which I believe still has the third largest operational nuclear arsenal in the world), maintained in part from general EU Funds with some sort of a dual-key or triple key launch system...
The Poles are allegedly agitating for such a deployment (those cruise missiles Putin has supposedly deployed in Western Russia in violation of INF Treaty obligations HAVE to be aimed at Berlin, Gdansk, Warsaw etc to say nothing of the Baltic States), Angela Merkel might see this as a better bet for the money rather than depending an impulsive and duplicitous US President, one with an ambigious relationship with Vladimir Putin.
"Our Source" to quote Peter Bull in "Doctor Strangelove" is "The New York Times" so take all with a grain of salt.
If your "Iron Dream" is a world composed of homogenous "Racial Fatherlands" (and a big believer in just that nonsense is sitting in the White House Situation Room even as I write this), then be warned, "Europe" has feared the "Barbaric Hordes of the East" for a thousand years, just because they may be white doesn't mean Europe doesn't regard them all with loathing. And should said "Barbaric hordes" start building bivouacs on the Vistula River & stringing barbed wire then I do not give this civilization six months to live....not with all these glistening racial homelands armed with nukes.
So lets all hope I am wrong....:)