UPDATE: One of my astute media colleagues has come up with an even-better dark horse: John Celona, who has a little more than a week of freedom left before he is scheduled to be imprisoned.
One of the great Rhode Island events of the year is prevented, by statute, from taking place in Rhode Island. We speak of the Providence Newspaper Guild's annual Follies, which happens on the last Friday in February (in other words, two days from now) at the inimitable Venus de Milo in Swansea, Massachusetts.
When satellite radio came on the scene a few years ago, I didn't think many Americans would be willing to pay for it. I was wrong. About 14 million people now subscribe to satellite radio in this country. Just as with very-popular NPR, there's real appeal in being able to listen to high-quality commercial-free broadcasting, in a broad range of topics and genres, from Major League Baseball to '70s funk.
Edward Achorn makes a compelling case today that we in Rhode Island have failed the victims of the Station nightclub disaster and their loved ones.
John DePetro is taking up the same issue this morning.
Last October, I wrote about the political fallout of the Derderians's plea agreements.
As we head into budget season, One Rhode Island has announced plans to hold a news conference this Thursday, February 22, at 11 am, at the Federal Hill House, 9 Courtland St., Providence, to outline its 2007 legislative priorities. "Coalition urges expansions, not cuts, to vital work support programs," is one of the subheadlines on a news release.?xml:namespace>
Give it up for George and for Abe.
The two main points from US Senator Jack Reed, who appeared with Senate colleague Chuck Hagel this morning on Meet The Press:
1) The US has known for months about the newish, more lethal type of IEDs being introduced into Iraq, reportedly by Iran's Quds Force, part of the that country's Islamic Revolutionary Guard.
Tim White, who's off to a strong start as WPRI's investigative reporter, talks on Newsmakers (5:30 am on Channel 12 and 10 am on Fox 64) this Sunday about the New England mob. (I'm hardly impartial in evaluating Tim because of my respect for his dad, the late, great Jack White, who first invited me onto the show.)
Also, Representative Peter Palumbo of Cranston talks about a recent goodwill trip to Nicaragua, and the panel (Steve Aveson, Arlene Violet, and myself) discusses the ongoing aftermath of the Station nightclub disaster.
Thanks, Keith. We'll always have 2004.
Bruce Sundlun revealed today that he has been in touch with Buddy Cianci and tried to facilitate a jailhouse meeting between the former mayor and his daughter, Nicole. The colorful former Democratic governor was a guest speaker during a luncheon held by the RDW Group.
Sundlun, who explored the prospect of buying the ProJo in 2003, did not disappoint.
UPDATE: I stand corrected on Col. Pare's last day with the RISP. Pare, who also appeared Sunday on WLNE's morning show, told Jim Hummel, "I'm leaving because I decided it's time to leave."
It's my understanding that today marks Wednesday marks the last day on the job for Colonel Steven Pare of the Rhode Island State Police.
Blogging continues to grow in new and fascinating ways. The New York Times had a good story yesterday about how the bloggers at Firedoglake have provided the most extensive coverage of the Scott Libby trial.
A few other odds and ends:
-- Seth Gitell, the astute former Boston Phoenix political reporter, had some kind words for Not for Nothing on his blog yesterday, saying, "Even though disgraced mayor, Buddy Cianci is still in federal prison, Rhode Island politics are still colorful.
When even Ed Achorn whacks Governor Carcieri for not sounding a sufficient alarm about Rhode Island's problems, you get a sense of the difficult times facing the Ocean State. One piece of this puzzle is the state's brain drain, and I've got a story about it in today's Phoenix.
Providence Mayor David N. Cicilline offers an implicit response, of sorts, to Achorn with an op-ed in today's ProJo, headlined, "RI must climb out of its budget rut."
Will the Clinton machine roll over the other Democratic presidential candidates? Will Obama's charisma overcome his institutional disadvantages? Boston Phoenix political reporter David S. Bernstein has a look at how well the two big-name Dems are faring in making friends and influencing people in New Hampshire.
Things have improved considerably at WRNI (1290 AM), Rhode Island's public radio station, since Jane Christo, the then-GM of the Boston-based WBUR Group, announced plans to sell it in 2004. Christo is long gone, and Boston University, which holds the license for WRNI, decided to maintain its affliliation with the station.
Marriage Equality RI and MERI's new blog are reporting that the wintry mix won't affect plans for today's 4:30 pm Valentine's Day rally at the State House.
Unfortunately, for same-sex couples seeking full marriage rights, legislation in support of this seems unlikely to make it far in the General Assembly this year, mostly because of the socially conservative inclination of the legislature.