Opera singer, blogger, lawyer. You can reach me by email at david [at] bluemassgroup [dot] com.

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  1. It doesn't. (0 Replies)

    It’s a free widget from another site. Just a little snippet of javascript. Seems to work OK.

  2. No. (0 Replies)

    A Trump presidency would be catastrophic for the country and the world, and I don’t use that word lightly. So what if he doesn’t have a Republican Congress. He has the executive branch and the military, and that’s plenty to pretty much ruin the world in 4 years.

  3. Good heavens. (1 Reply)

    The rules are the rules, and they are not (or should not be) a mystery to anyone involved. It’s that important to them who gets to bang the little gavel?

  4. Images (2 Replies)

    Our native image hosting system is not working. You’ll need to post them elsewhere (Google Drive, flickr, etc.) and then link to them from there.

  5. Kaine. Ugh. (3 Replies)

    I really hate that idea, though I concede it’s possible. Still going with Julian Castro.

  6. Bernie was not effective (1 Reply)

    on foreign policy throughout the primaries, IMHO (agreeing with jconway below). His powerful, straightforward message on domestic issues like income inequality and health care was nothing like his rather superficial, not terribly convincing message on foreign policy. Hillary hasn’t moved left on foreign policy in part because Bernie has not forced her to do so – which is not the case for domestic policy.

  7. I'm glad it picked up. (0 Replies)

    I was there for about the first hour, and I can’t say that I learned much – the questions were unfortunately rather repetitive, and I couldn’t discern much in the way of policy difference between the two candidates. Both candidates agree that income inequality is a problem; both support the Fair Share/millionaire’s tax amendment (which won’t be on the ballot until 2018); both agree that investing in fixing and expanding the T is a good idea. *Yawn*

    What I also could not discern is why a voter looking for basically progressive representation would choose to unseat Jehlen and replace her with Cheung. He didn’t seem to me to offer anything especially new or creative, and Jehlen has been doing the job well for quite a while now.

  8. Kristol really is (1 Reply)

    the worst of the worst. It’s very unfortunate that anyone takes him seriously.

  9. Yeah, I agree with this. (1 Reply)

    I think the “nyah nyah” scenario’s likelihood is basically zero. Sure, there will be the odd overzealous Clinton supporter who takes that tone. Just as the odd Bernie bro sticks with the “Bernie or bust” approach. But the candidate herself? No. She’s never said anything like that, and IMHO she never will.

  10. Well, they were wrong. Lol. (1 Reply)

    They’ve basically acknowledged as much recently (see footnote 3). But they’ve apparently taken the position that at this point, it would be more appropriate for the political process rather than the judicial process to change the rules. I can see the argument.

  11. Two points (1 Reply)

    On distinguishing salaries from wages, I assume you mean something like an agreed-upon annual salary vs. an agreed-upon hourly wage? I don’t think that would work. Lots of salaries – the vast majority, in fact – are well below the cutoff for the Fair Share Amendment. On the second point, taxing wealth is an entirely different ballgame and is not constitutionally problematic even without an amendment.

  12. "They wanted to be sure all income was taxed equally." (1 Reply)

    I will just repeat, for the record, my view that the authors of Article 44 never intended to impose a uniform tax rate on earned income.

  13. The operative language in Article 44 (2 Replies)

    is that income tax “shall be levied at a uniform rate throughout the commonwealth upon incomes derived from the same class of property.” If you accept the notion that all earned income is income “derived from the same class of property” (which you shouldn’t, but which the SJC unfortunately did in 1921), then you’re stuck with a uniform rate.

    One could, I suppose, argue that especially high incomes are somehow derived from a different “class of property” than lower incomes. But it’s hard to see what that “class” would be, and it’s also hard to imagine the SJC seeing the maneuver as anything other than an end-run around the prevailing (though IMHO erroneous) interpretation of Article 44.

  14. And, amusingly, (1 Reply)

    there’s a comment on the livestream reading “I agree on that Gary is a good guy but begging is sad.”

  15. Overheard (1 Reply)

    from Gary Johnson’s speech: “PLEASE give me Bill Weld!” LOL

  16. On the question of standing, (1 Reply)

    the issue isn’t addressed in the opinion (which you can read here, since the Globe story unhelpfully doesn’t link to it – wtf). I don’t see any indication that the defendants ever questioned the standing of the various plaintiffs (individual and institutional) to bring the suit.

  17. Again, (1 Reply)

    the final up-or-down vote on this issue has to be at the ballot, because the proposal is to change the state Constitution. It’s different from the initiative to cut the income tax rate to 5%, which was ordinary legislation.

  18. A popular vote is required in either case. (0 Replies)

    This is a constitutional amendment, not a law. So regardless of whether it’s proposed by initiative (1/4 legislative vote in 2 successive sessions required to get it to the ballot) or by a legislator (majority legislative vote in 2 successive sessions required), it goes to the ballot. Yes, a signature drive builds up a limited degree of popular support first – but the numbers are so trivial compared to what’s actually needed to pass the thing that I don’t see that as a major factor.