The Baystate Objectivist

The Baystate Objectivist

Sunday, October 19, 2008


When the game is over.

This morning I took the dawn express into Amherst and got off at the Big Y to do some foodstamp shopping. Afterwards I began walking down University Drive towards UMass. When I got to the University stadium, I saw there was quite a mess all over the lawn made by tailgaters.

Yesterday the UMass football team lost 30-15 to Richmond. The fans sure left behind a lot of trash.

The presence of semi-neat piles like this suggest that some attempt had been made to clean up.

UMass employees will clean the rest up, but still one would hope a better effort would be made by the students to pick up after themselves. Another discouraging sight once I got near the UMass library was to see this bunch of flowers ripped out of the pot and thrown on the lawn.

Who does this kind of mindless destruction? Drinking or a lost football game is not an excuse.

This afternoon at the Hillel House just off campus there was some kind of fundraising bike ride picnic underway.

At the 2004 Democrat Convention in Boston, I ran into Rep. Barney Frank and asked him if I could take his picture. He said yes.

Frank has been getting a lot of unfavorable publicity lately from those who have argued that as the top House Democrat on finance he should've been looking to see that the government created Fannie Mae and Freddy Mac mortgage giants had better oversight. Now its been reported that Frank's lover was a executive with Fannie Mae. Conflict of interest?

Barney Frank, an openly gay Democrat member of congress, is also the chairman of the House Banking Committee. You know, the group that's supposed to oversee government-sponsored enterprises like Fannie Mae.

But for years Frank's gay lover, Herb Moses, was an executive at at Fannie Mae - even while Frank had the power to block real oversight of Fannie Mae. Fannie Mae was recently taken over by us, the taxpayers, because they made TRILLIONS in loans that they could not guarantee. At least $400 billion of that was to people with terrible credit profiles. And now we're on the hook because Rep. Frank vigorously defended Fannie Mae's unethical and dangerous practices.

You have to give the Republicans credit, they at least warned of impending disaster (although without doing much about it) which is at least a step above Democrats like Frank, who stubbornly denied that anything was wrong. While there's plenty of blame to go around for this economic crisis, the fact is more of the blame falls on the Democrats.

Not that the Republicans will be able to benefit at the polls - as usual they're too busy fighting among themselves, as you can see demonstrated at the local level when the Western Mass Republican group refused to endorse right-wing ideologue Mike Franco for Governor's Council.

Here's Franco's version of events, in a press release in which he refers to himself in the third person:

The Western Mass. Republicans Executive Board voted not to support Mike Franco's campaign for Governor's Council because of outside influences on their decision making. Franco, who holds a position on the board as Vice Chairman, abstained from the vote. He did, however, speak on behalf of the campaign during the meeting.

In an uncanny development, the WMR Board, under an initiative proposed by Kevin Jourdain, WMR Chair, voted to give the Republican Newspaper $500 to $1000 of advertising monies from the WMR treasury to highlight candidates in the region under its "banner", which would include Franco. Yet, the Board's earlier vote signaled they did not want the WMR name associated with Franco's campaign, which also translated to no financial support.

In an e-mail vote, which Franco objected to, calling instead for a physical assembly of its members, the Board voted 5-to-1 to give substantial advertising dollars to the Republican Newspaper. Here's the record of the vote:

Kevin Jourdain - Yes
Hunter Golden - Yes
Bill Caplin - Yes
Bill Johnson - Yes
Marcia Evans - Yes
Mike Franco - No

(Note: Kevin Jourdain has let his intentions be known that he will run for Mayor of Holyoke in 2009. He has personally asked Mike Franco for Mike's direct support more than a few months ago.)

Gee, I hadn't realized that Jourdain (above) has already made the decision to run for mayor. I wonder who the Democrat nominee will be? With the incumbent Mayor Sullivan retiring, this race should be a real barnburner!

Oh well, let us close with the thought that whatever else happens in life you can always be a loyal plastic robot for a world that doesn't care.


Jason Burkins said...


The photo of the outside of the stadium was appalling. I would expect people would take more pride and care in how they leave the property. I used to go to many of the UMASS football games back in the early 00's and I can't remember it ever looking that bad afterward. Its disgraceful.


Kristen said...

I never had any doubt that Jourdain would run and I doubt anyone else from Holyoke did either as soon as Sullivan announced his intentions not to run again over the summer.

I am just hopeful that there are other strong contenders in this race. I'd love to see a large field of candidates.

Anonymous said...

barney frank is an even more repugnant piece of crap than teddy kennedy