Wednesday, December 31, 2003
A Fraud in Review

We’ve always hated ‘this is the year that’ reviews - largely because we dislike seeing what we missed, and being reminded of what we were unable to avoid.

However, in our attempt to satisfy our many reader requests, listed below are a handful of highlights of Team Reform’s first year in office.

And while not rank ordered, we begin with our favorite fraud of '03 which is a microcosm of all we have witnessed since Romney took office:

· The Fraud Governor claimed to cut short his vacation to oversee security in the Commonwealth, then left the Commonwealth for vacation!

Romney also,

· pledged to save the taxpayers $2 billion in waste, fraud and abuse, but did not;
· pledged to not raise taxes, then increased a gas tax (and shifted the money into the General Fund), proposed a new tax on IRS closing agreements, proposed a new tax on diversified savings and loan companies, and proposed a new tax on late-filed refund returns;
· pledged to manage better without seeking new revenue, then implemented $500 million in new fees;
· pledged to not cut core services, then tried to reduce school aid, including reimbursements for the cost of educating severely disabled students;
· pledged to abolish the hack-infested MDC, then created a new state agency, largely staffed by former MDC employees;
· pledged to not hire cronies or insiders, then cherry-picked from the staff of former state Treasurer Joe Malone, who headed one of the worst administrations in state government since Sir Edmund Andros (in 1689);
· pledged to create full-day kindergarten, but did not;
· pledged to protect seniors, yet has repeatedly cut elder programs and failed to fund Alzheimer’s programs;
· pledged to create more affordable housing, but cut state housing and rental programs;
· allowed his toll-free, waste hot line to become an ad for dial-a-porn. (Doubt us? Go ahead, dial 1-888-END-PORK and follow the instructions, if you dare!);
· pledged to embark on an extended out-of-state mission to bring jobs to the Commonwealth, but did not;
· pledged to reform the judicial nomination process, then nominated, as his first judge, an insider;
· initiated almost a dozen task forces after campaigning against the use of task forces;
· proposed across-the-board budget cuts after criticizing former Gov. Jane Swift (R-Flag Bearer) for implementing across-the-board budget cuts;
· pledged to implement a transportation policy based upon a defined, public process, then declared that Greenbush would be completed – before he finished his defined, public process for setting transportation policy.

Oh yeah, and most of these are just what we’ve noticed since the beginning of September!

So hold on to your wallets, kids. Team Reform has another three years at the trough. In the meantime, we’ll break out a clean slate and chalk box.

RiaF will return … next year.

Happy Hogmanay!

Tuesday, December 30, 2003
Team Reform is Whacko

While pronouncing his opposition to gay marriage, Willard Mitt said "at the same time, we should (be) providing the necessary civil rights and certain appropriate benefits" to same-sex couples. (source: Boston Globe, 11/21/2003)

And his loathsome $150,000-a-year spokesman preened "the (fraud) governor is not a social crusader. He did not run for office to crusade for or against gay rights. But sometimes issues are forced upon you, and they require a response. . . . The governor has taken a consistent, principled position."

Romney had previously said gays should receive the same work, social and family benefits as married couples -- except for the right to be married. "I draw the line there," he said. (source: Lawrence Eagle-Tribune, 8/10/2003)

So Romney supports protecting civil rights and social benefits for gays? And takes consistent, principled positions?

A U.S. Magistrate Judge has ruled that Whacko Hurley and the other South Boston parade organizers can force gays to march in a ‘separate but equal’ parade next St. Patricks Day. (source: Boston Herald, 12/30/2003)

So when can we expect the Fraud Governor to fly back from vacation so that Team Reform can hold a press conference assuring us they will protect the civil rights and social benefits of parade-minded gays?

Or is this a job for the Lieutenant Governor?

Too bad we don't have one.

Monday, December 29, 2003

So Willard Mitt wants to make Massachusetts citizens feel more secure? He might start by doing something about Public Safety Secretary Edward A. Flynn, who today stands accused of white-washing inside information of departmental breakdowns until whistle-blowers, “fed-up with Flynn’s inaction,” contacted the FBI. (source: Boston Globe, 12/23/2003)

It was only after departmental complaints were taken outside the system that Flynn “declared that he had uncovered problems in the grant program and had initiated an investigation into allegations of misuse of the money.”

Flynn’s mendacity was confirmed by Christine Cole, the Secretary’s deputy chief of staff, who said Public Safety employees told of allegations of grant money misuse back in January of 2003.

So what other security short-comings is Secretary Flynn covering up?

And when can we expect our Fraud Governor to fly back from vacation and hold a press conference to assure us that he is doing everything to keep us safe from … our state government?

Friday, December 26, 2003
Flight of Fancy

The headline was priceless: “Romney flies back from vacation.”

Papers across the state reported that in response to heightened security concerns, Willard Mitt flew home from vacation to oversee the Bay State's jump to threat level orange. (source: Boston Herald, 12/22/2003)

They even included a cool, gubernatorial quote: "We are planning a substantial increase in the deployment of personnel, and that's primarily law enforcement personnel. Police and fire will be far more visible in some of the areas of critical infrastructure in the commonwealth."

The state’s official web-site continued the charade, four-walling “December 22- Governor Mitt Romney provided an update on the state's emergency preparedness efforts associated with the increase in the national threat level." Replete with a 360 x 244 pixel picture, in full color, of Romney calming the public. (source: mass.gov 12/22/2003 – 1/7/2004 and counting)

But then on Tuesday, “Acting Gov. William Galvin signed legislation giving cities and towns the option of waiting a month to mail out third-quarter tax bills.” (source: SHNS, 12/23/2003)

Huh? We thought Willard Mitt flew home to oversee security? So why was Secretary of State Bill Galvin the “Acting Gov?”

“Galvin (was) acting governor while Gov. Mitt Romney and Lt. Gov. Kerry Healey (were) out of state for the holidays.” (source: SHNS, 12/23/2003)

Maybe our sources were right. Because, as we heard it, the Fraud Governor flew in on Sunday at 9:00 p.m., held a press conference to show he was large and in charge, and was back on a plane to Utah by Monday afternoon. (source: source)

Thank goodness Mass.Gov didn’t post a 360 x 244 pixel picture of Romney boarding his return flight. The image of the Fraud Protector leaving the state hours after bragging that he had returned to oversee security would have likely caused panic in the street.

At least near 85 Merrimac Street in Boston.

Wednesday, December 24, 2003
Have Yourself A Team Reform(er) Christmas
(sung in three-part harmony, of course)

Have yourself a Willard Romney Christmas.
Don’t drink any beer.
Make sure that the Swifties are most out of there.

Have yourself a Kerry Healey Christmas.
This is what we mean:
Do whatever you want you will not be seen.

(Loathsome Spokesman stay close to home.
Get thee near a phone. Be true.
Never know when that Joe Malone
Will seek out a job, from you.)

As for the Administration Sec’y,
His case he did state.
Give the takers nothing that is from Bill Gates.

Or there will be an Angry Eric Kriss-mess time.

RiaF will return on Friday, December 26.

Tuesday, December 23, 2003
Willard Hoover

Looking like George H.W. Bush at a supermarket scanner, the Fraud Governor recently rode the Blue Line to publicize his plan to create “development where it is needed,” residences and workplaces in proximity to transit and the creation of active pedestrian districts around transportation hubs. (source: Office of (Fraud) Gov, “Romney kicks off transit-oriented development initiative,” 12/17/2003)

According to Team Reform, “the MBTA, which is the second-largest landowner in the Commonwealth, will demonstrate these practices through development on its
own property and by offering certain communities strategic assistance for this kind of development.”

Back when he was Winter Games chef, Willard Mitt was chastised for failing to develop housing in Salt Lake City, Utah. Salt Lake Impact 2002 and Beyond, a watchdog group, gave Romney and his Salt Lake Organizing Committee a ‘D minus’ in housing and community development for creating 156 units of affordable housing out of a goal of over 2,000 units. (source: Deseret News, 2/9/2002)

Romney, meanwhile, expressed apathy toward the creation of affordable housing, saying brutally “people of all different economic situations are living in our community and that's the way it should continue.” (source: Associated Press, 4/5/1999)

But that was then.

Now the Fraud Governor wants to aggregate T riders and put 'those people' in a common area where they can live and work.

Is it just us, or does this scheme sound familiar?

No matter. If the Transit Ghettos come to fruition, we propose each be fronted with an ‘if you lived here you’d be home-type' plaque:

“Welcome to Romneyville, USA.”

Monday, December 22, 2003
May gives, may take

Willard Mitt is making noise about car insurance. On the cusp of the average insurance bill breaking the $1,000 barrier, Romney claims he is working on a solution. (source: Boston Globe, 12/18/2003) But he’s taking a Nixonian-ish stance on releasing details.

Great. While he's at it, he can also pretend to solve some of the other regulated payments that citizens are forced to pay – like natural gas prices.

Last week, NStar, one of our friendly natural gas companies, announced they would petition state regulators for a 6.6 percent rate hike. (source: Boston Globe, 12/20/2003) In a display of Romney-esque arrogance, NStar’s rate request followed a notice they would increase their quarterly dividend payment to investors by 2.8 percent. (source: Boston Herald, 12/19/2003)

We trust that the Thanksgiving photo-op showing NStar CEO Tom May serving turkey with the Fraud Governor (source: Boston Herald, 11/27/2003) was coincidental to NStar’s rate file. As was the $5,200 that May and 15 other NStar exec’s gave Team Reform in May 2003. (source: OCPF)

Sure sure.

Friday, December 19, 2003
Romney Courting Problems in Construction Reform

Willard Mitt wants to revamp the court system by reducing the number of facilities throughout the Commonwealth. The Fraud Governor wants to consolidate the present 116-facility network into 20 regional justice centers. (source: Boston Globe, 12/15/2003)

Team Reform claims that under their new construct, ‘virtually every resident would be within fifteen miles of a courthouse.’

Unless we have no sense of 'radial math,' (we always respond to our readers) that means a lot of new construction.

And Angry Eric “Human Triage” Kriss wants to strike Ward Commission-era enacted public construction laws and place controlling interest back in the hands of the “trust me, I’m from the government and I’m here to help” project owners.

That means a lot of general contractors will be looking for a lot of new construction.

Team Reform may have to schedule a whole new round of State House breakfast thank-you receptions.

Angry Eric’s 'I have a dream' speech about the evils of public construction laws was silted with quotes from John F. Kennedy, including this non-sequitur about looking “forward to an America which will not be afraid of grace and beauty, which will protect the beauty of our natural environment, which will preserve the great old American houses and squares and parks of our national past and which will build handsome and balanced cities for our future.” (source: EOAF, “Balanced Cities,” 12/15/2003)

What this has to do with public construction reform is beyond us.

But we’d like to suggest a new phrase that Angry Eric and Willard Mitt can use the next time they want to tell us how their construction over-haul will help make Massachusetts a better place to live and work:

"Ich bin ein Fraud."

Thursday, December 18, 2003
Dining for Donors?

Not too long ago, Willard Mitt dropped the hammer on designer party organizers who had been using the State House as a function hall. In order to help pay for facility “upkeep,” Team Reform implemented a user fee, and began charging as much as $4,650 for events in the Great Hall, on the Grand Staircase and in other historic rooms in the State House.

The genesis of this cash grab was … the FY2004 budget, which was signed by the no-tax (fraud) governor, himself. (source: Boston Globe, 8/30/2003)

Now when you think of historic rooms in the State House, do you think of the Governor’s office? Maybe. Especially the mahogany conference table that Gov. Weld’s former speechwriter used back in the early 1990s. (source: Bostonmagazine.com, 6/2003)

So if you wanted to have a breakfast to thank your friends and supporters, and you wanted to use the Governor’s office, do you think you’d be charged an “upkeep” fee?

We ask because … we hear things. And according to a tip to the Rat Line, the Fraud Governor may have recently held breakfast receptions in his State House office to thank campaign donors.

Now, we doubt the Fraud Governor would be so … foolish … as to hold a fund-raiser in his office. But would he hold a campaign thank-you there?

If so, would it be sanctioned by the Ethics Commission? And if so, would his campaign have to pay an “upkeep” fee?

According to the Office of Campaign and Political Finance, Team Reform paid for catering services on November 14, November 18, and November 19. Could these dates correspond to gubernatorial breakfast receptions? There are no corresponding “upkeep” payments. So perhaps our information is but a bad rumor.


Then again, perhaps someone should FOIA Team Reform’s November/December calendar pages and guest logs. And ask for an Ethics Commission ruling.


Wednesday, December 17, 2003
Six for the Season

Remember how Willard Mitt abolished the MDC to get rid of all those redundant management positions? (see RiaF 7/15/2003)

Well, in this, the 'worst economic time since the Great Depression' (cough), your state government is hiring. And not just any agency - the Department of (MDC Job) Conservation and Recreation, otherwise known as DCR.

Team Reform is looking to fill six, count ‘em, six management positions at what we used to call the MDC. They are looking to hire:

a Deputy Commissioner for Operations;
a Deputy Commissioner for Administration and Finance;
a Deputy Commissioner for Planning and Engineering;
a Director of the Division of Urban Parks and Recreation;
a Director of the Division of State Parks and Recreation; and,
a Director of the Division of Water Supply Protection.

Note the published qualifications: preferred applicants must have 7-10 years of related management experience and relevant education. (source: Boston Globe, 12/14/2003)

Can you spell bag-job?

With Team Reform calling the shots, the big winner in the Somerset Street sweepstakes will most likely be William McKinney - the failed congressional candidate who headed the MDC earlier this year and who's been living in a spider hole since the Fraud Governor named him acting director of the urban parks division.

Wait a minute. Does McKinney have 7-10 years of related management experience?


Note to (failed Melrose-mayoral candidate and former MDC commissioner) Dave “Red Dog” Balfour: Please come home; all is forgiven.

Tuesday, December 16, 2003
Deadbeat Dom?

You can call state Senator Cheryl Jacques a lot of things, but to our knowledge, she always pays her bills. Which is more than appears to be true about Republican State Committee Executive Director Dominick Ianno.

On Wednesday, December 10, Ianno bid $212.50 to win an online-charity auction for a State House tour by Jacques. (source: Neponset Valley Daily News, 12/11/2003)

However, according to our sources, as of late Monday December 15, five days after the auction ... Deadbeat Dom had yet to pay the 501(c)(3) charity.

Hours after the auction closed, someone (Deadbeat Dom?) called the media to make hay.

Perhaps they should have called PayPal to make good on Deadbeat's debt.

Monday, December 15, 2003
Kriss Crinkles Revenue Message

Wait a minute. Eric "Human Triage" Kriss thinks that rising tax revenues will allow the Commonwealth to carry an extra $495 million into next fiscal year? (source: Boston Globe, 12/12/2003)

Then why was Kriss arguing that times were so tough the Commonwealth should restructure its unfunded pension liability payments by pushing the schedule back to 2028 and calculating the value of fund assets as of October 1 instead of January 1? (source: Boston Globe, 12/8/2003)

(And while he was at it, why didn’t Kriss suggest the fund be annually valued as of the date of its highest valuation? That would really goose the spreadsheets!)

We find it coincidental that almost one whole year ago, Kriss was crying that declining tax receipts were jeopardizing local aid payments, leading then-Gov. Jane Swift’s secretary of Administration and Finance to shrug that "The budget is in balance, Eric is just trying to err on the side of caution…. (source: Boston Globe, 12/17/2003)

And - surprise surprise - the Commonwealth ended FY2003 with a $133 million surplus. (source: Boston Globe, 7/8/2003)

So now what is going on in A&F? Is Kriss trying to err on the side of exuberance? Or has the 'time to make the Fraud Governor look good' budget phase begun already?

We figured that Team Reform had at least one more year of ‘worst economic times since the Great Depression’ press arrows left in their grotesque quiver.

Looks like the Fraud Governor is trying to 'find' new revenue so that he can pay for the $1 billion-dollar tax rollback he promised to deliver.

Friday, December 12, 2003
Romney Hot-Line is H*O*T

Remember the hot-line that Willard Mitt set up during his campaign to restore truth and morality to Massachusetts? He called it “a toll-free ‘waste hot line’ where people can report it. That's 1-888-END-PORK.” (source: Boston Globe, 6/21/2002)

We figured we'd report some pork. So we dialed Romney's number: 1-888-END-PORK.

And didn't get his hot-line. We got his H*O*T Line!

A voice said, “Call 800-400-TALK.”

So we did. And we heard a female voice say "Hi, guys. Welcome to a new, exciting way to go live and one-on-one with hot, horny girls waiting right now to talk to you . . .."

At which point, fearing some under-handed, clandestine Romney revenue scheme, we hung up.

Thursday, December 11, 2003
Romney A Security Adviser? What Noncents!

If you claimed to launch the “largest anti-terrorism deployment since 2001” while implementing policies which downsized local public safety forces to a point where your own Secretary of Public Safety called it “an ugly, ugly, ugly, forced-choice, zero-sum game for everyone” (see RiaF, 9/9/2003) do you think you’d be rewarded?

You would if you were the Fraud Governor. Because just this week, Department of Homeland Security Secretary Tom “Duct Tape” Ridge appointed Willard Mitt to an advisory council recommending security measures. (source: Boston Globe, 12/9/2003)

We trust Romney will not recommend downsizing local public safety forces as an effective method of improving security.

Of course, Ridge and Romney have a history together. In 2001, Ridge helped provide Winter Games chef Romney and the Salt Lake Olympics “the largest domestic security operation in the nation's history” including having FEMA fly 400 missions to secure restricted airspace. (source: Deseret News, 3/9/2002)

And earlier this year, Romney helped take pressure off Ridge at a time local officials across the country were clamoring for for increased funding by claiming that local entities do not, in fact, want money.

Romney, incredulously said “This isn't a matter of money, this is a matter of establishing procedures and working groups that continue to strengthen our intelligence capability and the communication of intelligence across different levels of government.” (source: Stateline.org, 8/25/2003)

(Just like the Commonwealth, eh Fraudo? Local officials don't want local aid; what they really want are procedures and working groups. Sure sure.)

So now Ridge and Romney are officially a team. We hope they make great strides together, and suggest they start by trying to find the Lightweight Lieutenant Governor.

Sherry Kerry Healey has not been seen in public since she went deep into the hinderlands to give tips on how to winterize homes. (see RiaF, 10/24/2003)

We’re afraid she’s been frozen out.

Wednesday, December 10, 2003
Romney Works For Resurgence of Press Releases

In office for less than one-year, Willard Mitt’s vaunted media machine appears to be cutting corners. A casual glance at Team Reform’s recent press releases will show that during one ten-day period, the stout, Reese Witherspoon-wannabe dye-job aide to Romney’s loathsome $150,000-a-year spokesman “wrote” and issued virtually the same press release touting what is purportedly Willard Mitt’s favorite subject.

Compare and contrast the following releases. The October 20 Worcester release is presented in bold, while the October 30 Andover release is in plain font:

October 20, 2003 CONTACT:
Shawn Feddeman
Nicole St. Peter
(617) 725-4025

October 30, 2003 CONTACT:
Shawn Feddeman
Jodi Charles
(617) 725-4025

Pushes proposal to provide tax rebates to companies that create manufacturing jobs

Pushes proposal to provide tax rebates to companies that create manufacturing jobs

WORCESTER – Bringing his campaign to create more jobs to Central Massachusetts, Governor Mitt Romney today highlighted his proposal to provide tax rebates to companies that create new manufacturing jobs in the biotechnology, life sciences and medical device industries.

ANDOVER – Bringing the Romney/Healey administration’s campaign to create more jobs to the Merrimack Valley, Governor Mitt Romney today highlighted a proposal to provide tax rebates to companies that create new manufacturing jobs in the biotechnology, life sciences and medical device industries.

“We want to encourage companies that create and develop their ideas in our Commonwealth to stay and manufacture their products here,” Romney said after touring the Massachusetts Biomedical Initiatives Incubator Park.

“We want companies that develop their products in Massachusetts to manufacture them in Massachusetts,” Romney said, after a tour of Wyeth BioPharma, one of the largest biopharmaceutical operations in Massachusetts.

He added, “My proposal, which is part of the jobs bill I filed, will help businesses expand and give them incentives to stay right here in Massachusetts as they move from the lab to the factory floor.”

He added, “My plan, which is part of the economic development bill I filed, will help businesses grow and give them incentives to stay in our Commonwealth as they move from the lab to the factory floor. My administration is committed to helping companies like Wyeth reach their full potential.”

Romney’s economic development bill provides companies in the biotechnology, life sciences and medical device industries with a tax rebate for each new manufacturing job. Romney’s proposal will provide eligible companies with 50 percent of the state income tax they pay for 10 or more new employees.

Romney’s economic development bill provides tax rebates to companies in the life sciences, biotechnology and medical device industries that create 10 or more manufacturing jobs. Under the plan, eligible companies will receive 50 percent of the state income tax they pay for the new employees.

Romney noted that many R&D firms are attracted to the Bay State for our dense concentration of research universities and skilled workforce. But once they have a product developed, they move out of state or the country to manufacture it because costs are lower.

Romney noted that many R&D firms are attracted to the Bay State for our dense concentration of research universities and skilled workforce. But once they have a product developed, they move out of state or out of the country to manufacture it because costs are lower.

“I applaud the Governor’s support of the biotech industry and the good jobs that our companies in Worcester are creating everyday,” said Kevin O’Sullivan, President and CEO of the Massachusetts Biomedical Initiatives, a business development venture that assists start-up biomedical and biotech companies. “The tax rebate will help convince many of the companies that get their start here at the incubator to stay and manufacture their products in Massachusetts.”

“We applaud Governor Romney for his focus on job creation and reducing barriers for business – especially for biotechnology companies that face such high risk in getting our products to market and into the hands of patients who need them,” said Chris Perley, Managing Director of Wyeth BioPharma in Andover. “The tax rebate that Governor Romney has proposed in his ‘Jobs First’ bill is exactly the type of incentive that global companies like Wyeth need in order to focus and maintain jobs in Massachusetts.”

Romney urged the Legislature to take action on a job creation bill quickly so that companies can begin creating more jobs with the use of the tax rebate and other incentives to help get the Bay State economy going again.

Romney urged the Legislature to take action on his jobs creation bill quickly so that companies can begin creating more jobs with the use of the tax rebate and other incentives to help get the Bay State economy going again.


Zoiks. Yawn. And pass the No-Doz.

Keep in mind that Romney claims to actually care about the economy. Imagine how much work Team Reform is putting in on issues they DON’T care about!

Tuesday, December 09, 2003
Freedom's Just Another Word For 'Shut Up, You're Suspended'

Quick, who said, “I would certainly promote the right of free speech in appropriate, permitted settings to espouse positions and views I consider wrong. That's part of our American system and, likewise, my political philosophy.” (source: Boston Globe, 8/11/2002)

The quote is from then-Fraud Candidate Willard Mitt.

Next question: who said, Romney “understands that not everyone will agree with him on every issue, and he's willing to engage in an open and honest dialogue.” (source: Boston Globe, 12/6/2003)

How many guessed the stout, Reese Witherspoon-wannabe dye-job aide to Romney’s loathsome $150,000-a-year spokesman? You were correct!

Last question: who said, “it's more than inappropriate for a staff person to make a comment. (H)e was not authorized to speak on behalf of the department." (source: Associated Press, 12/5/2003)

That would be Justin Latini, a Department of Corrections spokesman, announcing a suspension of Robert W. Brouillette, the business agent for the Massachusetts Correction Officers Federated Union, for describing the death of an inmate.

So much for Team Reform standing up for freedom of speech.

Which is ironic insofar as Romney owes his office to the First Amendment. Remember the poll that Christy Mihos first commissioned (as "a private client") that ended up getting Romney in the race? Mihos purchased the poll to get back at former Gov. Jane Swift (R-Flag Bearer) for, in his view, violating his First Amendment rights. (source: New Bedford Standard Times, 5/13/2002)

So why is Team Reform now turning its collective back on free speech?

Just after taking office, Romney made a big show of firing redundant press aides that had been marbled throughout state government. Yet when the dust settled, it became clear that many of the supposedly fired agency spokespersons had actually just been moved to different positions. (source: Boston Herald, 6/19/2003)

We figure the Fraud Governor is now trying to reserve some work for his press vassels so they have more to do than simply work on his Christmas Card list.

Monday, December 08, 2003
Post-Storm Post Mortem

The December blizzard was Team Reform's first opportunity to do something for the citizens of the Commonwealth. Since being sworn to office, Willard Mitt and his band have been working against - taxes, policies and politics. The storm gave them an opportunity to do something for the citizenry. However, judging from the quality of Storrow Drive and other state roads, they failed miserably.

As someone once said, any jerk can knock down a barn; it takes skill to build one.

Romney Breaks Special Interest Pledge

Question: who does Sue Bass like in the Super Bowl? On August 20, 2002, Bass (of Belmont) wrote a letter that is worth a second look:

"Voters disgusted that state governments serve special interests rather than the public interest should not expect much change if (Willard) Mitt Romney wins election. As the story on the astounding $1.9 million he has raised in campaign funds since March makes clear ("Romney fund-raising setting a record pace,'' Aug. 15, 2002) Romney will be indebted to the financial, real estate, and construction industries, and probably many others. (source: Boston Globe, 8/20/2002)

Of course, Willard Mitt claimed he would owe no one. In campaign debates he lambasted Democrat Shannon O’Brien for being “a tool of a labyrinth of lobbyists and special interests.” (source: Boston Herald, 9/25/2002)

But now it appears that over the past three months, Romney has helped the State Republican Party take hundreds of thousands of dollars from top executives of area financial, real estate, and venture capital firms, many of whom do business with state government or are looking for special (tax) legislation. (source: Boston Globe, 12/7/2003) These "donations" are from “wealthy private-sector special interests, almost all of which are active at the State House trying to influence government officials and state policies.”

Hey Willard Mitt, could you say that labyrinth thing again?

Back when he was nominated by the Republican State Convention, Romney said “I pledge no allegiance to any special interest group, no political machine, and no far left political ideology.” (source: Romney2002.com, 4/6/2002)

But after hob-nobbing with special interests, and hiring anyone who ever met Joe Malone, Romney has now broken two of his three Convention pledges.

Which only leaves his pledge to avoid pinko-leftie groups.

Sue Bass is no doubt taking bets on when Willard Mitt will join CPPAX.

Saturday, December 06, 2003
Federal Judge Refutes Olympic Scandal

If a tree doesn't fall in the middle of the forest, does it still make a sound?

A US federal judge recently threw out charges against Tom Welch and Dave Johnson, two Salt Lake Olympic organizers, saying the bribery case against them was "devoid of criminal intent or evil purpose." (source: Boston Globe, 12/6/2003)

He also refuted whether the Olympic "clean up," which was led by Winter Games chef Willard Mitt, was as noble as has often been described, calling attributions of moral values "misplaced."

Romney, who was hired by the Salt Lake Organizing Committee (SLOC) to be a "White Knight" and "clean up" the Games, made headlines criticizing Welch and Johnson, calling them "unethical" and comparing the two to shamed President Richard Nixon. (source: KSL(radio & TV).com) (Willard Mitt's comments continued a long-standing feud between his family and Nixon, who in 1970 called George Romney a 'grandstander.' (source: citypaper.net))

Welch's attorney pronounced Romney's comments self-serving, calling them "mean-spirited, hurtful and wrong. Shame on him for inflicting pain for his interest and shame on him for his phony morality." (source: KSL(radio & TV).com)

A federal judge apparently concurs.

As far as we are concerned, justice has now been served - both in Utah and Massachusetts. After all, Romney used his position as Winter Games chef as a springboard to the Commonwealth's Corner Office. It's only fair that the Fraud Governor be unmasked as the Fraud Knight.

So, now that the court has found that the Salt Lake Olympic scandal was not really a scandal, what becomes of Willard Mitt's self-sculpted reputation as a scandal solver?

We suggest the former Winter Games chef treat the federal court the way he treats the Massachusetts courts: just ignore the gosh-darn buggers and hope they go away.

Friday, December 05, 2003
Could Court Cuts Curtail Nomination?

We hear things. And while we generally refrain from printing without a corroborating, published cite, once in a while we have to trust our sources.

Today is one of those days.

Earlier this week, Willard Mitt broke his judicial logjam and nominated two bench appointments, one of which is slated to sit on the Land Court.

In 2002, the number of Land Court judicial positions were increased from four to six. As such, with Romney’s latest nomination, the number of Land Court judges have increased by 50 percent.

However, during this same period, the Land Court support staff has been decreased by approximately 20 percent. Seven staffers were laid off this year due to budget cuts. At present, Land Court staffers are said to be barely able to keep up with docketing litigation papers as they are filed.

Perhaps the most over-whelmed staffers at the Land Court are the two sessions clerks. One has been handling trial and hearing scheduling for three judges, the other for two judges. Now, if the Governor’s Council accepts Romney’s nomination, another judge will be added to the mix.

What does all this mean? By adding another judge to the Land Court, yet refusing to address staffing concerns, the Fraud Governor is actually working to make the Land Court less efficient.

Simple solution: the Governor's Council could short-circuit the Land Court nomination. Maybe Eric "Human Triage" Kriss will help make the case for fiscal prudence in this, the worst economic period since the Great Depression (cough).

Of course, if the nomination goes through, Willard Mitt now has an excuse to create several staff positions that Team Reform could fill. Maybe they'll use another "blind" process that is “free of political considerations.”

Would someone please tell Leon Lombardi that his (fraud) governor needs a new list of names?

Thursday, December 04, 2003
Long List of Connections for Judicial Nominee

Willard Mitt, the Fraud Governor of Massachusetts, who pledged to establish a judicial screening process free of political considerations yesterday nominated Keith C. Long for a seat on the Land Court. Long is a long-time friend and former co-worker of Leon Lombardi, who is the former head of the Republican State Committee. During Lombardi’s tenure as RSC Strongman, the RSC counsel was Daniel Winslow, who now serves as counsel to the fraud governor. (source: SHNS, 12/3/2003; Boston Globe, 11/13/1992)

Oh yeah, Leon Lombardi is now a judge, on (you guessed it) the Land Court. (source: Boston Globe, 6/29/2003)

Lombardi and Long worked together at Warner and Stackpole (which in 1999 merged with Kirkpatrick & Lockhart. (source: Boston Globe, 7/22/1992; law.emory.edu))

(Warner and Stackpole was very close with the administration of then-state Treasurer Joseph D. Malone. Through 1994, the firm earned more than $400,000 from bond work with Malone’s Treasury. The law firm also employed a former law partner of Joe Malone's top deputy, and attorney Rich Arrighi, a leading fund-raiser for Malone who was sentenced to a three-year jail sentence for his involvement in a $9.4 million embezzlement scheme. (source: Boston Globe, 6/28/1992; Boston Herald, 10/1/1999; Boston Globe, 9/27/2001))

So did Long’s relationship with Lombardi, and Lombardi’s relationship with Winslow have anything to do with the Fraud Governor’s nomination?

Stop it. After all, Willard Mitt promised to establish a judicial screening process free of political considerations.

It's certainly nice to see an independent, apolitical-type make something of himself.

Kim Thurlow

A tip of the RiaF cap to Kim Thurlow, a senior in the Winchendon public schools who yesterday confronted the Fraud Governor on how special ed students are supposed to deal with MCAS.

Romney's unctuous and patronizing response? After acknowledging that some disabled youth will have trouble passing the test, he said scrapping the graduation requirement would be detrimental as testing "points out to us where we as a group of old guys responsible for schools have some more work to be done. By testing our students, we're testing ourselves as educators and administrators and even political leaders to see where we are failing." (source: Boston Globe, 12/4/2003)

Translation: If you're unable to pass the exam, do not receive a high school diploma and can thereafter not obtain decent employment for the rest of your life don't take it personally because MCAS is a tool for 'grown ups.'

Ward 'this'll hurt me more than it hurts you' Cleaver would be proud.

Wednesday, December 03, 2003
Romney Highway Storm Policy Proves Slippery At Best

A morning snow shower paralyzed greater Boston highways yesterday, gridlocking traffic for hours. MassHighway Department officials told the Boston Globe that their "agency had been caught off guard because the prediction was for mere flurries." (source: Boston Globe, 12/3/2003)

However, independent snowplow contractors who have been balking at new state regulations claimed they were not called out to sand the roads by a punitive MassHighway Department. (source: Boston Herald, 12/3/2003)

Aside from the over 300 accidents that were reported to State Police, the malprepared roads caused “almost incalculable economic carnage due to missed meetings, blown deadlines and lost productivity.”

This is the second time this year that MassHighway inaction has caused massive traffic tie-ups. Last March, plow operators accused Romney officials of holding them back “until the last possible minute and getting a late jump on a blinding snowstorm that created scores of major accidents, including a 100-car pileup on I-95 in Attleboro.” (source: Boston Herald, 3/8/2003)

Plow drivers said that state managers use “the 11th-hour mobilizations” in a short-sighted attempt to save money.

Total snow-fall at Logan Airport during yesterday’s “storm" according to National Weather Service : 2/10ths of an inch. Total economic impact to state businesses according to the Associated Industries of Massachusetts: in the millions. (source: Boston Herald, 12/3/2003)

Thankfully the long New England winter is finally over, and the Fraud Governor can return his attention to the harder functions of government, like instructing taxpayers on how to safely cook a turkey.

Tuesday, December 02, 2003
One Hand Paves The Other?

Would you lookit this. According to news reports, the Federal Highway Administration has barred Aggregate Industries from participating in any new federally funded construction projects. Something to do with price-fixing charges involving MBTA bids. (source: Boston Herald, 12/1/2003)

(The company claims they are blameless. And we believe them. Sure sure.)

Strangely, a spokesman for the Feds claimed the suspension was delayed because of alleged inaction by U.S. Attorney Michael Sullivan's office. Could one conclude that Sullivan’s inaction allowed Aggregate to participate in Big Dig related contracts from which they otherwise would have been barred? If so, Aggregate shoots and scores - with an assist from the former-Republican state representative from Abington.

Stranger still, Aggregate Industries is Willard Mitt’s favorite asphalt company. Company officials kicked in over $3,600 for Romney/Healey Inc in 2002 (back when it counted.)

But their biggest contribution came on June 24, 2002 when Aggregate 'made like a movie set' for one of the Fraud Candidate’s phoney "work days" and Willard Mitt joined the gang in Andover to help lay down some black gold. Sans helmet, of course.

And a good pol never forgets a favor, right?

So do you think Team Reform asked US Atty Sullivan to lay off Aggregate until the last few big Big Dig contracts had been completed?

If so, do you think that this was the first time that Romney and Sullivan joined forces? Last fall, shortly after Willard Mitt pounded Democrat Shannon O’Brien for working for Wellesley-based Community Care Systems, Fred Thacher, that company’s former CEO, pled guilty to tax, Medicare and Medicaid fraud. Did Sullivan tip off Romney that a deal was in the making? Did Romney ask Sullivan to help pressure Thacher into pleading?

Only their hairdressers (and asphalt pavers) know for sure.

Monday, December 01, 2003
Ike Romney Fails in Bid to Shortchange Military

Beware the Friday-just-before-or-after-a-holiday press release. It has even more potential for mischief then the typical Friday release.

Last March, one day after posing in a faux bomber jacket at the Otis National Guard base in Bourne (source: Boston Globe, 3/27/2003) Willard Mitt filed legislation to give additonal pay to state employees who had gone on active military leave.

However, his bill, to provide qualified military personnel with $6,000 (source: House No. 3739) was immediately denounced as 'tokenism' by members of the state Senate (source: Boston Herald, 4/11/2003) due to the fact that the salary gap between the average state employee and the average military personnel is $15,000. (source: (Fraud) Gov's message, H-3739)

Instead, the legislature filed language to provide qualified military personnel with complete salary protection. (source: Senate 1985) And that is the bill that was recently signed into law.

Romney's reaction? Take credit, of course.

The Fraud Governor, who spent the Vietnam War selflessly defending Parisian patisseries from the godless horde (see RiaF, 3/28/2003) released a press statement on the Friday after Thanksgiving which read, in part, "I support our troops overseas and recognize that families across Massachusetts are making sacrifices by having their loved ones away defending our nation. We don’t want them to also worry about paying their bills. This will help ease that burden for state employees.” (source: Office of (Fraud) Gov, “Romney lends a hand to state employees on military duty,” 11/27/2003)

You don't want them worrying about bills? Then why did you propose that they receive but $6,000, and for the benefit to stop in early October 2003? (source: H-3739)

What a turkey. When it comes to Romney, the only thing military men and women can be thankful for is that the Fraud Governor has as much legislative juice as an after-dinner mint.

One can only guess what Romney's pathetic press machine will release on the Friday before Christmas.


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