April 2008
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Day April 14, 2008

The National GOP Attack On Kerry

{disclaimer: I’m John Kerry’s Internet Director}

It’s always fun when the GOP attacks these days. What with gas pushing $4 a gallon, their nominee calling for 100 years in Iraq (or a thousand, make it a million!), and our economy rampaging toward recession, it’s kind of tough to run on the issues. And when you have a bench as bare of credible candidates as MA … whaddya gonna do?

Lie. Avoid the issues. And put a picture of Britney Spears on it.

The gruesome details (with bad pop culture references) below …

The genesis of BitterGate, or, yes, the internet really has changed everything

The NY Times has a must-read story on the ongoing flap over Barack Obama’s remarks about small-town Pennsylvanians — specifically, how they became public.

It was a blogger.

Here are a few key items for your consideration.

John McCain is Not a Christian?

CNN held a discussion on religion on Sunday night at Messiah College – A Nationally-Ranked Christian College founded by the Brethren in Christ church and located in Grantham, Pennsylvania. Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama attended. John McCain said he had a scheduling conflict although his schedule reported that he was home in Arizona and would travel to his other home in Washington D.C. that day. Both Clinton and Obama presented themselves well in a provocative discussion of faith. Again, McCain was invited by the college and CNN but did not attend. In a discussion which followed with John King of CNN and a panel of other guests it was revealed that although John McCain was brought up in the Episcopal Church and now is a Baptist that John McCain has NEVER been baptized. To put it bluntly, you cannot be a Christian – a follower of Christ – and not be baptized. Even the New Testament reveals that Jesus Himself was baptized by John The Baptist. John McCain maybe a decent, moral and honorable man but he cannot be a Christian without being baptized in any one of the Christian denominations. Please correct me if someone can document that John […]

NRSC Targets Kerry

The National Republican Senatorial Committee released a Web video today to commemorate the anniversary of the last time John Kerry introduced successful legislation in the United States Senate. NRSC Communications Director Rebecca Fisher said in a release, “Some people may rejoice in the fact that John Kerry’s agenda isn’t being passed into law. But, unfortunately, John Kerry’s inaction has left the state of Massachusetts without an effective legislator.” The fact that Kerry is getting any attention at all from national Republican organizations is interesting. UPDATE: The text of the bill is here

A “small program” that could keep Massachusetts from losing its twenty-something residents

The graduation rate for Massachusetts Community Colleges is stuck at about 17% [that may be a bit low, as it doesn't count those who do graduate but get a two year degree in six or seven years - per the Massachusetts Area Planning Council's figures].  See http://www.metrofuture.org/

THE NEW IDEA:  Many residents in their 40s-60s have homes with empty bedrooms because their own children have graduated, married, moved on.

Foster care and DSS services basically end at 18.  For that reason among others, young people in the 18-24 year range who have aged out of foster care often lack homes and adult guidance.  These are state-created “legal orphans”.  

Additionally, some young adults who have been adopted are never successfully integrated into their adopted families and also find themselves without support during the “normal” college and trade school education period.  

Massachusetts is poor in manufacturing and entry level work as well as having very high housing costs.  For this reason, many of these young adults may start a community college, perhaps with tuition assistance, but cannot keep a roof over their heads, and may move to a “cheaper state” to survive and drop out.

Even without being made into legal orphans by the state, many other young adults must support themselves fully with no help from a kinship system.  Many work very hard, taking one or two classes a semester for years while struggling to survive in the harsh Massachusetts economy.  

Hundreds rally at state house in support of home care workers

On April 1,home care workers joined 1199SEIU members, consumers, allies and elected officials to speak out for better wages, benefits, training options and state funding for a contract that improves home care in Massachusetts. Over 5,000 signed cards were delivered to the governor’s office in support of better home care jobs. Check out the video on pcavoice.org for more information.

Tax Day in the Creative Economy

A message in honor of Tax Day from Cecil B. DeMillion Enterprises. Dear Massachusetts Taxpayer: A year ago I was a sad sack just like you, cutting a check to the Department of Revenue.  Then I learned about the Massachusetts Film Tax Credit.  And now I understand that in the creative economy, it’s not about the taxes you pay, it’s about the taxes you don’t pay. Let me explain.  Cecil B. DeMillion Enterprises is a family-run business consisting of myself and my sister and brother-in-law.  We specialize in cinema verite depictions of the Massachusetts urban landscape, including these soon-to-be classics: “Mystic Riverbank”® (2007).  What happens when you park your car in the Assembly Square Mall parking lot and point your webcam east for an hour?  Mystic Riverbank® will open your eyes to the fascinating world of seagulls and flotsam. “Good Twill Hunting”® (2008).  Shot entirely from a pants rack at the Men’s Wearhouse in Quincy, this short subject captures and ebb and flow of a retail establishment on a weekday morning, showcasing the camcorder feature of the Motorola MotoRazr V6M cellphone. Without the Massachusetts Film Tax Credit, neither of these important films would have been made.  Here’s how it works. […]

Happy Anniversary John Kerry!

It’s been 9 years since you’ve been lead sponsor on a bill that has become law.  Congrats.

Barry Crimmins Is Giving Away The Store!

Okay, a slight exaggeration, but Barry Crimmins is offering free – absolutely no strings – his first recording “Kill The Messenger”, to any-and-all, for the downloading.

Recorded in 1991, this has Crimmins coming off the decade-plus that saw him run the legendary Ding Ho Comedy Club, in Inman Square, Cambridge, MA, as well as establishing himself as the best political satirist in the country.

Update on Governor’s Agenda

Last week I shared an overview of Governor Patrick’s agenda for the next few months.  I want to post a progress report for review (and comment) by the BMG community. The past week was a productive one for the Governor.  He asked his Cabinet to institute over $150 million in spending controls and prepare for deeper cuts if revenues come in lower than expected, he delivered a well-received economic address that was supported by the Speaker and Senate President, he introduced new initiatives to stimulate the state’s economy, repair our roads and bridges, create jobs, and help regional economies, the House passed legislation to close corporate loopholes, and both the House and Senate passed the Transportation Bond bill. This week, the Governor will continue to visit different regions of the state to discuss local growth districts, make another announcement about a company deciding to stay and grow in MA (the third such announcement in the last two weeks), and continue to work on implementing reforms in our transportation infrastructure. I appreciated the suggestions that my last post generated, and please know that they were shared with others in the administration.  I look forward to additional comments as we move forward […]