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Harry Truman he ain't

I know there are a lot of issues on the table right now, particularly the sales tax increase the House just passed, but, because it was buried at the bottom of a column deep in the Metro section of this morning’s Globe, I wanted, very briefly, to point to a comment from Lawrence school superintendent Wilfredo Laboy so absurd it defies satire. Yet another scandal appears to be roiling the Lawrence public schools. After recent revelations that assistants to the Superintendent conducted unwarranted background checks on more than 400 individuals and that, apparently, underage drinking at Lawrence High doesn’t require police notification, we learn today that a K-8 school principal in Lawrence has been hawking her, according to the Globe, […]

One Day

That’s all it took. We wait years for pension reform. Years for the state to reform the health care purchasing regime. Decades for them to loose the embrace of public employee unions. All that takes decades. And it isn’t done. But an increase in the sales tax? All it takes is a day. On this one the Governor is right. His letter yesterday certainly offended House members, in a way U.S. interference in a Central American election would offend that country’s population. The Governor’s letter was certainly an act of political gamesmanship, but what is wrong with that? Yes, he got the gospel late in the game, finally insisting on reform first. But the Senate only talked a great game. […]

The Return of Governor Deval Patrick

The House of Representatives is, as we go to press, engaged in a political suicide mission — attempting to build a veto-proof majority to raise the sales tax by 25%. The Governor, smartly, has staked out a contrary position with some very specific insistence on reforms, backed by a threat to veto the sales tax increase: – On pensions, the Governor is insisting on reforms that apply to both new and current employees. This is a direct challenge to the House’s efforts thus far. – On transportation, “real reforms” and “true cost savings”, noting that based on the House and Senate efforts “[w]e are not there yet”. – On ethics, he notes the Senate’s inaction. This is smart politics and […]

Interesting Choices

I opened up my Globe this AM to be greeted by this Metro section headline: “Political Momentum Builds for a Sales Tax Increase” plus a picture of a rally and an article on the topic. Interesting choices, given that the rally only attracted 40 or so people and the content of the article was much more noncommital. Contrast that with the studied inattention to the larger “Tea Party” rallies of the week before — wire story on a rally elsewhere deep in the first section.

Treasurer Cahill's Spring Cleaning

Allegations were made regarding the connections between the Treasurer and some lobbyists at the end of last summer. The State Ethics Commission recently started investigating the allegations and certain folks on the left started jumping for joy (see here and here). They assumed this was the end of a potential challenge to their Governor. But Cahill was ‘cleared’ yesterday by the Ethics Commission (that’s the Herald headline, the actual wording was “this matter does not warrant further action at this time”). Regardless, Cahill has a clean bill of health on the matter should it come up later and he did it before the vast majority of voters are paying much attention. My guess is that this was his intent all […]