Not raising taxes when required to fix the commonwealth's infrastructure has been the worst blunder of modern times in the Bay State. Joined and often led by cowardly and self-interested Dems, they refused to generate the revenue necessary for road and bridge repairs, other transit improvements (including track and high-speed rail preparations), and other low-visibility essentials.
The result has been an accumulating bill like those for the people who don't exercise or eat right and who refuse to visit the doctor or dentist until they are in big trouble. The costs for those delayed infrastructure essentials have soared and have gone from millions to billions.
Meanwhile, donkeys and elephants alike here have largely rolled through re-elections on that promise of I'll never raise your taxes. Thanks a bunch, you short-sighted and dishonest pols.
To their discredit, the Democratic Party has not made it plain that fiscal responsibility definitely does not include deferring the necessary until it is critical. With a heavy sigh, I admit that is likely in recognition of how many Dems play the never-raise-taxes game to get re-elected too.
In fairness, along with his high intellect and far-reaching political vision, Mike Dukakis will forever represent two negatives to many voters — Taxachusetts and that damned tank picture.
Back in the real world, we should ask whether he would be a good stand-in for Kennedy with crucial health-care and other votes coming up before the middle of January. That answer is clearly yes, which must annoy and terrify our local GOP types.
In contrast, they have set themselves apart as the the anti-Kennedys. After decades of slamming and slandering Ted's goals, they don't have anyone who stands for his values. Dukakis, with his two burdens, does. I don't know that Gov. Patrick would have the courage to appoint the Duke and come down like Samson with the donkey's jawbone on the sillies.