This morning I heard Michael Graham complaining that the Boston Globe failed to cover the local "Tax Day Tea Party," providing only an AP story bylined from Kentucky. I now see that Graham has groused about it on his blog as well. Graham led the after-work rally at Christopher Columbus Park; there was also a lunch-time protest on the Common, in front of the State House.
Papers around the state fret about cuts in the House Budget: Globe, Herald, Lowell Sun, Springfield Republican, Quincy Patriot-Ledger. Elsewhere:
--Lawrence City Hall will be closed on Fridays for budgetary reasons, the Eagle-Tribune reports. Fitchburg preps for layoffs, reports the Sentinel and Enterprise.
Down, down, down go the numbers, ever lower, lower....
Bottom line: total state aid to Boston in the FY 2010 House Budget released today is $76.2 million less than what was budgeted for Boston in FY'09, and $53.2 million less -- 12% less -- than what Boston actually received in FY '09, after mid-year "9C" cuts.
It is also roughly $30 million less than what's assumed in Mayor Menino's FY'10 city budget, submitted earlier this month to the council.
Lots of stories today about Deval Patrick's grim budget news and plans to layoff state employees. Also, about the woman found murdered in the Copley Marriott -- which can't be good PR, although on the plus side the headlines do all refer to it as a "luxury hotel." Elsewhere:
--A punch in the gut for long-suffering Brockton: Rocky Marciano statue for Brockton on hold for financial reasons, the Enterprise reports.
--Tom Menino just deposited well over $10,000 from Boston-area contributors with East Asian surnames. Take that, Sam Yoon!
--Menino also got a nice contribution from former DA and almost-challenger Ralph Martin. Take that, former Martin employee Michael Flaherty!
--Sam Yoon is going across the river to Cambridge to hold a "College Night with Sam Yoon at the Hong Kong."
Michael Steele, the new RNC chairman, really doesn't know what the hell he's doing.
Tomorrow is the big day for the "Tax Day Tea Parties," to protest big-government taxing and spending, among other grievances of the far right/libertarian crowd. As I previously blogged, I've got nothing against it -- when people disagree with their government, this is exactly what they should do.
So says the New York Times, which reports that Governor David Paterson will introduce a same-sex marriage bill Thursday.
Plenty of outrage and anger about the Easter Traffic Fiasco in today's papers. Elsewhere:
--Tomorrow's unveiling of the house version of the state budget already has stomachs churning, and fingers pointing, state-wide; the Worcester Telegram and Gazette has a good overview.
--Today's bad budget news: 123 Andover teachers get layoff notices, reports the Eagle-Tribune; Bridgewater-Raynham schools will lose 66, according to the Taunton Gazette.
I want to emphasize that I have absolutely no reporting to back up the following notion -- quite the contrary, in fact. This is pure speculation, of the "what-if," "gee that would make sense" variety of idle thought.
So here it is: Deval Patrick, US Ambassador to China.
A savvy pundit put it into my head a couple of weeks ago -- again, with no personal knowledge or information -- and it makes so much sense I can't shake it off.
Today's focus is on the rescue from pirates of Capt. Richard Phillips, Mass. Maritime Academy alum. In non-pirate news:
--Always more budget bad news: Lawrence is rotating firehouse closings, according to the Eagle-Tribune; Lowell's city manager warns of impending layoffs, the Sun reports; Leominster is looking at its toughest budget in years, says the Sentinel and Enterprise.
Boston Housing Authority's long-time chief, Sandra Henriquez, was named today to be Assistant Secretary for Public and Indian Housing in the Obama Administration's Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).
Henriquez has led the housing authority since 1996 -- making her one of the longest-serving members of Tom Menino's cabinet.
The state's new report on hospital errors and mishaps is big news today -- especially in communities with hospitals that racked up big numbers. Standard response: Our hospital has higher error numbers because we've taken such great strides in improving our reporting of errors, not because we make more errors. Elsewhere:
I'm a big believer in protest. If you've got a complaint, especially against the government, get up and say so and make sure you're heard.
I've seen a lot of political protests, from one lonely soul to hundreds of thousands. I've seen the profound, the passionate, the hate-filled, and the absurd. Most ultimately have little impact toward the organizers' goals -- in fact, they are often detrimental to the cause -- but that's not surprising, because people tend to protest when they feel they have no avenue for effecting the change they believe in.
Eric Fehrnstrom, loyal Mitt Romney flack, has a guest column in the Des Moines Register sharing his wisdom on gay marriage -- wisdom gained during the gay-marriage wars in Massachusetts -- with Iowans who will soon be experiencing it for themselves. For gay-rights supporters who were in Massachusetts during those wars, it's a great read, in the punch-your-fist-through-the-screen-trying-to-throttle-that-lying-hypocritical-weasel sense of good reading.
This blog is much honored to have made Chris "The Fix" Cillizza's new list of "Best State Political Blogs," at the Washington Post. (Although not bold-faced like Blue Mass Group!)
I want to take a moment to welcome any Fix readers who may be stopping by to check the blog out. Naturally, we in the great Commonwealth of Massachusetts do not actually care about those of you in other, inherently inferior parts of the country.