March 2015
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Month March 2015

Is the USOC about to drop a house on #Boston2024′s bid?

Quick, someone prep the Lollipop Guild; it looks like someone may drop a house on #Boston2024′s bid. The Fat Lady hasn’t sung yet, but the obvious conclusion about Boston 2024 is becoming obvious to the people who still have the time to stop it. The USOC has come out to deny the report, but the story is writing itself from here. Is the USOC really going to continue to humiliate itself after wasting years of effort to get back in the IOC’s good graces? Doubtful. It’s only a matter of time, now — as Boston 2024 goes drip, drip, drip.

Governor Baker, Prioritize Environmental Justice

Dear Governor Baker, As you know, on November 25 of last year Governor Deval Patrick signed into law an Executive Order #552 on Environmental Justice which decrees that state agencies designate resources to protect the health, safety and environment for the most vulnerable residents of the Commonwealth. It recognizes that low-income communities, communities of color and communities with limited English-proficiency live in areas with greater exposure to environmental health hazards. As part of the College Democrats of Massachusetts’ Environmental Action Week, we write to you in support of this Executive Order and thank you for ensuring its continued implementation. We appreciate the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs’ (EEA) updated policies on Environmental Justice including reducing diesel emissions, promoting clean energy technology, brownfields revitalization and creating greenspaces. In addition to the EEA, we hope we can count on you to make sure all state agencies create an environmental justice strategy by May 24, 2015 and that secretariats designate a coordinator to implement their specific strategy. Massachusetts made history by becoming the eighth state in the nation to make environmental justice a policy priority and we cannot allow this progress to stagnate. Another crucial part of guaranteeing environmental justice for […]

Stan Rosenberg Cheapen’s Gay Marriage With Karyn Polito Officiating his wedding

Stan’s love is so real, so strong, so sacred, so special that he’s allowed the obtuse wealthy closet tea party nut job to officiate his wedding. Imagine if you were a bride and your husband to be wants  somne stranger with suspect credentials officiating your wedding because it will help him at work. I’m beginning to think Stan’s personality may get in the way of his performance as Senate leader. Tough to respect a guy who sells out his wedding for a poilitcal headline.   (man have been in a bad mood this week.)

TED BROUGHT US WITH HIM…

Many of us had some tie with Ted Kennedy — and for most of us it was simply having voted for him because we knew he would deliver for our state. Today, watching the wonderful ceremony opening the new Ted Kennedy Institute for the US Senate, it dawned on me that his greatest gift was in being able to reach out to those who did not fully share his progressive values. But the reason this was such a gift to our nation was that he used that gift to lead us forward into a more equal, a more prosperous, a more peaceful, and a more generous – spirited place by bringing together those who didn’t originally share his vision.  Ted Kennedy brought us along gracefully into being that more generous nation. Thank you, Senator Kennedy.  Thank you because after all of your tribulations, you used your humanity to bring our nation and our community together in the end.   Fred Rich LaRiccia    

Question For All Us Feminists: Should Michelle Wu Bring Baby to City Hall Meetings?

First Rule of this argument: Let’s assume everyone has had a kid, knows someone who’s has a kid, or has at least one parent who’s had a kid. Okay? Nobody has cornered the market on parenting. A picture of  Michelle Wu with her beautiful sleeping baby in in front of her on her desk at a council hearing was tweeted out today. Very cute and yes I question the photo-op/using-baby-as-prop-for-political-gain (do you know how many kids have been raised in city hall and kept out of the chamber for meetings?). I got jumped on when I questioned this in a twitter reply. But let’s use this to discuss the bigger issue. I am sorry to tell my fellow feminists but there is a difference between the male and female and this is where we see it. Michelle is a mother. Michael Flaherty is a father. He leaves the house and I bet doesn’t obsess about his kids that day. Will they make the dentist appointment, will they make it to the bus on time, do they have money for the field trip, are they dressed warm enough. Yes the dad thought about it and yes he cares but in reality, […]

Ocean “conveyor belt”: Where do the fish go?

At its heart, the global warming problem is about food. There’s a local angle to the climate news that the Atlantic “conveyor belt” is slowing down. Also known as North Atlantic Drift, these are the ocean currents that go from the tropics and bring relatively mild weather to Europe. The melting of Greenland’s glaciers has significantly slowed down the conveyor belt. So, Europe may well be getting colder. But there’s a local problem as well — where do the fish go? From Living on Earth’s interview with famed climate scientist Michael Mann: CURWOOD: Now, when you say it keeps Europe warm, we’re saying places like England, which is far north of eastern United States – New York, Boston – tends to be much warmer and has an earlier spring. MANN: That’s right. And of course, Western Europe relies upon that moderate climate. If they were to lose that moderate climate that would obviously be problematic for them, for their economy. The pattern of climate, of rainfall, of drought, of temperature, that we rely upon today, and we rely upon the stability of those climate patterns for human civilization, well, if they were to change abruptly, that could really spell trouble, […]

“US needs new perspectives” — a progressive alternative?

In a provocative appearance on ABC’s “This week”, former Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley spoke to a certain weariness that at least some of us have with the current state of the 2016 presidential campaign: “The presidency of the United States is not some crown to be passed between two families,” the former Maryland governor told ABC’s “This Week.” Finally. As a former Maryland resident, I am all too aware that the last former Governor from Maryland to achieve high office was not a success. Still, a brief review of Mr. O’Malley’s public record is at least initially encouraging (emphasis mine): O’Malley was governor of Maryland throughout the Great Recession, from 2007 to 2015. It is one of only eight states that kept an AAA bond rating throughout that traumatic period. Bond houses attribute the record largely to strong fiscal practices by O’Malley and his Democratic legislature, including a willingness to cut spending, raise taxes and restructure fiscal obligations, including pensions. The AAA bond rating statement is worth highlighting (emphasis mine): KEY RATING DRIVERS CONSERVATIVE FINANCIAL OPERATIONS: Financial operations are conservative, and the state maintains a well-funded rainy day fund. The state took repeated action during the course of the last […]

Why is Indiana’s “Religious Freedom” law such a big deal? Because Hobby Lobby changed everything.

Unless you’ve been hiding under a rock for the past week or so, you’ve probably seen something of the sh!tstorm that has erupted over the decision by the Governor of Indiana, Mike Pence (quite possibly a candidate for president but I digress), to sign a “Religious Freedom Restoration Act” into law in that state.  The NY Times declared that the law has been “denounced as [an] invitation to discriminate against gays”; the “#BoycottIndiana” hashtag is trending on Twitter; major entertainers, athletes, sports leagues, businesses, and others are talking about withdrawing from the state or cancelling plans to appear there or to expand their businesses; everything’s just going all kinds of wrong in the Hoosier state. This morning, Governor Pence went on This Week with George Stephanopoulos to try to defend himself and the law he signed, and his principal argument is a pretty straightforward one: our law is exactly the same as the federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA), which President Clinton signed, and it’s also the same as state laws that are already in effect in roughly 20 other states.  All basically true [UPDATE: however, see additional notes at the end].  So, he asks, why is everyone picking on […]

Dan Conley Is Lying To Public About Prosecutorial Discretion. He is Dangerous Man and Needs to be Replaced. (Plus He’s Stupid. Really Stupid. Makes Him More Dangerous To The Public)

At recent Pioneer Institute event SJC Chief Justice Ralph Gants used his time to decry mandatory criminal sentencing in a well thought articulate presentation based on law and facts. Following Gants on the Playbill was Suffolk County District Attorney Daniel Conley who, upon hearing Judge Gants’ remarks, threw away his notes and went broken arrow. This lightweight who thinks he’s a super heavyweight ripped into Gants in what has been described by many there as very unprofessional. (a lawyer can disagree with a judge but the higher the judge the outward respect shown rises exponentially. The SJC Chief is BIG regardless and Dan talked down to him. Punk.) Dan said Gants and those who think like him are a mess. The broken window policies 1990s work is his mantra. AND DISTRCT ATTORNEYS KNOW BETTER THAN JUDGES AND EVEREYONE ELSE WHAT THE PROPER SENTENCES FOR CRIMINALS ARE AND MANDATORY SENTENCING MAKES SURE THEY CAN CONTROL SENTENCING RATHER THAN JUST RECCOMMEND. That is Dan Conley’s position. Real simple folks. Public policy and we as schmucks want our district attorney to have discretion. It’s a good thing. That’s why they have a lot of discretion. We want that. Let’s them clean out the […]

Boston 2024: “Gullibility, What’s Your Policy?”

Now that even the folks at Boston 2024 are onto the public relations crisis surrounding their plan to bring the Olympics here, let’s do some speculating about how they’ll respond. Fortunately for the Boston 2024 team, its members include specialists in public relations work, such as the marketing firm Hill, Holliday. And fortunately for the rest of us, a preview of the kind of PR blitz we may soon expect in support of Boston 2024 is already available on the Hill, Holliday website. Here they are tooting their horn about a successful marketing campaign they undertook a couple years back for Liberty Mutual Insurance Company (not coincidentally, another member of the Boston 2024 team). I quote from it at some length because I just could not help myself. Smarmy has a hypnotic effect on me sometimes. Making a Challenger Brand a Leader Liberty Mutual…needed a resonant idea that would impact awareness and consideration, magnify its media investment, and drive growth – particularly online. Liberty Mutual was founded on the belief that the employees were responsible for “helping people live safer and more secure lives.” Internal interviews of everyone from the CEO to the call-center reps confirmed a resounding desire to […]