January 2009
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Month January 2009

Let’s hang together, or …

Now is the winter of everyone's discontent. Gigantic budget cuts are now necessary; local aid slashed; new taxes proposed to try to patch the gaping holes in state and local budgets. Nobody's happy. Therefore, I'm not very receptive to complaints from the beverage industry that they're being singled out in a strengthened bottle-bill proposal. Neither can I believe the claims from restauranteers who complain that a meals tax of a couple percent will seriously damage their business. At first blush, the idea is well, laughable. Doesn't a restauranteer have a heck of a lot more to worry about from a recessionary loss of employment than from a measly 1-2% tax on a bill? Do restauranteers remember that the very people who work on the taxpayer's dime take their families out for a meal every now and then? And indeed, the general public should not feel unduly put upon by a higher gas tax, (or even higher sales or income taxes, in order to keep our roads/bridges/buses/cops/teachers/firefighters/mental health workers/etc. If we don't want quality of life to deteriorate, and if we don't want to throw the most vulnerable in society to the wolves, then we have to pay for services. (That's […]

What’s happening in the 3rd Suffolk race to fill DiMasi’s former seat?

Aaron Michlewitz is off and running, and garnering support in the South End and Bay Village. Michlewitz was constituent services director for DiMasi and is highly regarded for his progressive pedigree. DeLeo is likely to schedule the election for early spring. What other news is out there already?

Good things

and bad things

President Obama


Caucus Day Open Thread

If you need information on what this caucus thing is all about, check out my post.  I thought that I would get an early start on an open thread. So where did you go?  Did you find lots of interested people, or was your caucus struggling to fill its allocation? I’ve been making phone calls in my own town to people who volunteered in the Obama campaign.  I’m finding a lot of people activated by the campaign who would like to get involved.     I’m always very ambitious and try to get to as many communities in the district as I can.  I’m hoping to get to eleven caucuses tomorrow.  A town at 10:00 AM, and then over to a city meeting with seven wards at the same location.  Then 12:30, 1 PM and 2 PM. I just can’t squeeze in either town that meets at 10:30.  Then I’ll relax by going to the Ashland DTC event featuring Congressman Jim McGovern.  People say I should get a life.  I tell them that this IS my life! 01/31/2009 Ashland DTC Wine & Food Pairing Fundraiser with Jim McGovern Saturday, January 31, 3 – 6 PM Ashland Fish and Game Club, […]

Politics as usual

This is all just more of the same

Stimulus: Making it work is more important than making it bipartisan

Not one Republican vote for the House stimulus.  Nada.  Zip.  The press report it as the end of the Obama dream of changing the tone in Washington and bringing in a bipartisan consensus.  Nothing like a quick verdict that.  Even after Obama dangled some tax cuts in front of Boehner and the boys, they still did what opposition parties do, they opposed.   From where I stand though, that’s not such a bad thing.  Now the Administration can get down to simply worrying about making sure the stimulus does what it says on the tin.  Reflate the economy.  Getting the most effective package passed and implemented well is more important than winning Republican votes.  Americans care a lot more about their jobs than they do about seeing donkeys and elephants holding hands under the Capitol.  The best route Obama can take to bringing Republicans around is by getting the economy turned around. So the big question is will the stimulus do the trick?  Is it big enough?  Is it funding the right types of investments?  Can it be spent well and perfomance managed so we can measure its impact?  That is really all that matters because if it doesn’t get […]

Weekly Joke Revue

From Daniel Kurtzman: “So far so good for the Obamas. The family is settled in. There’s the President and his wife and the kids and the mother-in-law. And they’re settling nicely. The only problem, the only complaint — and they don’t want to make trouble — but the only complaint is they can still hear creepy organ music coming from Dick Cheney’s dungeon.” –David Letterman “This is kind of an awkward time for President Bush. He’s too young to retire, yet still too old to destroy the moral and economic infrastructure of another country.” –Jay Leno “But Dick Cheney, you’ve got to give him credit. He’s enjoying his first week as a private citizen. In fact, today, he was out hunting human prey.” –David Letterman “They’re closing Guantanamo. That’s how bad things are, ladies and gentlemen. That’s how bad the economy is. You know it’s tough, you know the economy is bad, when even the terrorists are being laid off.” –David Letterman “Blagojevich looks like the guy that tells you you need new brake pads, you know? … He looks like an insurance salesman that keeps calling you ‘Captain.’ ‘Hey, Captain.’ … He looks like a guy who backs you […]

Commerce Secretary: Gregg’s Statement

A lot of buzz concerning President Obama’s interest in appointing Sen. Judd Gregg (NH-R) as Commerce Secretary.  As has been widely discussed, New Hampshire has a Democratic Governor, John Lynch. Should Gregg be asked and accept the position, John Lynch would likely be selecting the 60th Democratic Senator creating a super majority. I would not think that Republicans will allow this to happen, but things got interesting today with Sen. Gregg’s office releasing the following statement: “I am aware that my name is one of those being considered by the White House for secretary of commerce, and am honored to be considered, along with others, for the position,” Gregg said in a statement. “Beyond that there is nothing more I can say at this time.” That doesn’t sound like not interested to me.   So is this for real or is he opening up shop negotiating some kind of deal with fellow Republicans.  I don’t know what they can really offer at this point.

Obamaland has officially merged with the DNC

Follow this LIVE LINK and see for yourself.