Sunday, July 31, 2011

An Editorial Comment

Kenneth M. O’Brien

Having posted 100 articles since this site was started, I feel that it is appropriate at this time to address several issues.

The first is the criticisms that have been leveled at me regarding the use of anonymous posts.

As anyone who uses Google’s blogspot service, as I do, knows, there are several options offered to those making a comment.

One option is to choose “Anonymous”. It is beyond my control to change that.

However, there is another option offered. This is the “Name/URL” option. It would greatly simplify matters if more people used this option. When chosen, you can enter a “screen name” for “Name” and then leave the URL option blank. This would at least allow readers to distinguish among different individuals posting comments.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Another Kick In The Charter

Kenneth M. O’Brien

In their ongoing rush to re-establish the controlling interests of our corporate overlords, the Clickolla led town council of Casellaburg has scheduled another palace coup.

As you are most likely aware, the town mangler has been seeking a doctor to replace the resigned member of the Board Of Health, Dr. O’Leary.

In the meantime, however, the new ruling majority has begun preparing for the reestablishment of a five member BOH without waiting to amend the charter.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Do What You’re Told!!!

Kenneth M. O’Brien



Speaking as one the pigs or other barnyard animals now living in the “Animal Farm” of Casellaburg, I realize that my opinion has very little influence on our Clickolla led overlords.

Nevertheless, having outlined what I believe is coming to undermine the will of the people (once again), I was still taken aback in reading today’s newspaper.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Will Cart-Man Strike Back?

Kenneth M. O’Brien


Just as citizens celebrate their triumph over the Cart Monster, there are rumblings that Clickolla has plans to make that victory short-lived.


Such an administrative end run around the democratic process would be nothing new in Casellaburg.

We have Carlisle’s distortion of the Charter to create a five member Board of Health.

We have Healey’s “side letter” that altered the start date of the SRD contract as it was originally defined.

Now we have a variety of signals that there will be another avenue taken to re-animate this "Cart monster corpse".

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

“Gangster Government” Requires The “Constitutional Option”

Kenneth M. O’Brien

There’s a very old, and rather crude joke among campers who share a tent regarding the sudden nocturnal presence of unpleasant aromas. It begins with the observation, “He who say it….”.

The joke contains, however, as all jokes do, a fundamental truth about human behavior. In this case it demonstrates the presence of guilt and the immediate effort to escape such guilt and place the blame on others.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Breaking News: The Cart Monster Is Still Dead

Kenneth M. O'Brien

Contrary to all expectations, the Casellaburg Town Council last night overwhelmingly defeated an effort to revive the Smat Cart program.

By a vote of 7 to 1 the council voted down the agenda items that would have established the program. The sole vote in favor of the plan was cast by council vice chair Denise Clemence. Councilor Darlene Marcucci had been excused anf therefore was not present for the vote.

A large number of citizens braved the uncomfortable conditions in the council chamber and waited for several hours to speak on the subject.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Spend And Borrow Conservatives Created This Mess

Kenneth M. O’Brien

After decades of listening to the epithet “tax and spend Liberals” the truth has become clear.

Anyone who can divorce themselves from their ideological (dare I say religious) biases need only look at the facts.

From the election of Ronald Reagan in 1980 to the election of Barack Obama in 2008, Republicans controlled the White House for twenty out of twenty-eight years.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

The Cart Monster That Wouldn’t Die


Kenneth M. O’Brien

The newly reconstituted town council of Casellaburg will hold its first regular meeting on Monday, July 25 at 7:00.

The community’s new power couple of town manager Christopher Clark and council chair Catherine Nickolla (which in the spirit of other such power couples as Brangelina and Bennifer I will dub Clickolla) has put forth their first collaborative agenda.

Among the items to be acted upon are the following:

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Zero-Tolerance Lemon Laws

Kenneth M. O’Brien

I have made no secret of the fact that I am an outright liberal (or, in today’s micro-parsing of a once comprehensible language, a progressive).

In that regard I have argued for the need to regulate corporate, individual and political behavior that destabilizes society.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Hello? Kathy Charette? Are You There?

Kenneth M. O’Brien

Earlier today the wife of the Southbridge Police Chief posted a comment on this site.

Responding to another frequent, oh so frequent, commenter, Mrs. Charette stated:

The Charter Chupacabra

CHUPACABRA
Kenneth M. O’Brien


Wasting no time, the new Town Council leadership took a meat axe to the recommendations of the Charter Review Committee.

While the absence of members of the Charter Review Committee (CRC) was lamented, such posturing was disingenuous in the extreme.

Members of the CRC were never informed of the hearing or invited to attend. The Chairman was on vacation in Maine. Other members found out only through an email from the Chairman of the CRC on Monday or through reading about it in the newspaper.

Future Of Southbridge?

Generally I have refrained from duplicating reporting from other sources.

However, the following just struck a chord that somehow I could not resist.

Thus with all due credit and attribution I bring to your attention the following story from the Chicago Sun Times.

Town of Cicero spent $500,000 on trinkets from board member’s firm

By Steve Warmbir
Staff Reporter/swarmbir@suntimes.com
Last Modified: Jul 18, 2011 02:58AM

Why did the Town of Cicero buy 250 rubber chickens?

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

More Preble Piffle



Kenneth M. O’Brien

On Sunday, July 17, the Worcester Telegram & Gazette ran an article titled, “Priest’s account denied outright: Non-tornado charities got aid”.
I think that an objective reading of the article demonstrates that it more appropriately belongs in a gossip column rather than in a news story.


Monday, July 18, 2011

The Remark Of Cain

Kenneth M. O’Brien

Appearing yesterday (July 17, 2011) on Fox News Sunday with Chris Wallace, Republican Presidential candidate Herman Cain addressed the issue of the opposition to the construction of an Islamic Mosque by the residents of Murfreesboro, Tennessee.

The Fox News website has reported Mr. Cain’s remarks as follows:

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Smart ALEC

Kenneth M. O’Brien

America’s (genuine) cowboy humorist, Will Rogers, famously remarked,” I am not a member of any organized party — I am a Democrat.”

That observation is as true today as it was when it was made over seventy years ago. Herding cats is easier than getting Democrats to fall in line.

On the other hand, Republicans are notorious for conformity. I am not going to debate this. It is common knowledge and those who wish to dispute it overlook the various mechanisms that the Republican cult has created to excommunicate the unfaithful. As things stand today, even Ronald (on your knees, may his name be praised) Reagan would be declared anathema (after all he raised taxes 11 times and the debt ceiling 17 times during his eight years in office).

Friday, July 15, 2011

Tea Bugged

Kenneth M. O’Brien

I have recently been the subject of criticism for permitting the use of the term “teabaggers” on this site.

Now, I have made it clear that I will not allow the use of libelous speech.

I have similarly indicated that I will not condone indulgence in the use of language that is not acceptable in polite company.

This particular term, however, has caused some reflection.

A number of the bravest souls have voiced their objections in anonymous comments.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Strategic Arson: Republicans Are Demonic Keynesians

Kenneth M. O’Brien



This famous observation, perhaps the most oxymoronic of all time, is the strategy that the Republican cult and its demonic stepchild, the Tea Party, have chosen to adopt.

Never forget that Mitch McConnell, Senate Minority Leader, stated quite clearly that his Party’s number one priority was to guarantee that Barack Obama was a one-term President.

As a result we have witnessed a conscious program that has sought to stymie every effort designed to improve the economy.

Judge Declares Mistrial In Clemens Perjury Case

From The Los Angeles Times

"
July 14, 2011, 9:01 a.m. [PST]

The judge in the Roger Clemens federal perjury trial abruptly declared a mistrial on the second day of testimony after the government inadvertently allowed the jury to hear statements from a U.S. congressman questioning the credibility of one of the key witnesses against the former All-Star baseball pitcher.

U.S. District Judge Reggie Walton was livid Thursday that a video screen was left on in the courtroom while he and the lawyers privately discussed an issue away from the jury, and yet the jurors could clearly see written comments by U.S. Rep. Elijah E. Cummings (D-Md.) during a 2008 House hearing in which Clemens testified he never used steroids or other enhancement drugs."

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Tomorrow Dies – Fair and Balanced

Kenneth M. O’Brien

I never cease to be amazed by the number of local residents to whom I talk who say that their sole source of information is FOX News.

The 18th movie in the James Bond series, released in 1997, was titled “Tomorrow Never Dies”.

In that film, the British super agent was up against a worldwide media mogul, Elliot Carver. It was widely recognized at the time that Carver was a parody of Australian, (now U. S. Citizen) Rupert Murdoch.

Now, I realize that for many who follow this site, I’ll be repeating what you already know. I hope, however, that there will be the outliers who investigate what I am saying and perhaps realize the extent to which they have been hoodwinked.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Southbridge Town Council Reorganizes

Kenneth M. O’Brien

At its first meeting following the June Town Elections the Southbridge Town Council elected its leadership for the coming year.

Councilor Catherine Nikolla was elected Chairman of the Council.

Councilor Denise Clemence was elected Vice-Chairman of the Council.

As my only comment on this outcome, allow me to offer my proposal for the Town's new promotional campaign going forward.

Monday, July 11, 2011

GAY PAY

Kenneth M. O’Brien
Now that Massachusetts has sanctioned same sex marriage a disparity exists between the ways that gay couples are treated by the Federal tax system.

As a result of the 1996 Federal Defense Of Marriage Act (DOMA), the Federal government cannot recognize the legality of the marriage of same sex couples, even if it is legal in the state in question.

Thus, the Federal Government taxes the health benefits of gay couples but not those of straight couples.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

PUBLIC SAFETY OR PUBLIC SNAFU?

Kenneth M. O’Brien


Recently there has been a lot of controversy on this site regarding the Southbridge Police Department.

The night of the recent Southbridge Town Election the wife of the police chief appeared on this blog and ridiculed critics of her husband in light of the election results (the second comment).

What was notable was that, as others have commented, there was no attempt to answer or deny the questions that were raised by such prior posts as “Ain’t That A Crime”, or “Liquorboarding The Lazos”.

When Babies Die


Louise Woodward

Kenneth M. O’Brien

There is nothing more tragic than the untimely death of an infant or toddler.

It is even more disturbing when such a tragedy occurs under circumstances that are open to question. Under such conditions it is natural for people to assume that there must be an explanation for what happened. Usually this translates into the belief that someone has to be at fault, someone has to be to blame for this tragedy. Such things don’t “just happen.”

It is at this point that emotions begin to outrun facts.

We have seen this phenomenon at its most extreme in the public outcry over the verdict in the Casey Anthony trial.

Society has become infected with a CSI mentality that feeds the belief in the virtual infallibility of forensic science and its practitioners.

Unfortunately, reality is not as clear cut as those dramatic moments when David Caruso cocks his head, slips his shades down his nose below eye level and flashes those steely blues at the checkmated perpetrator.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Update: Activist Group Schedules Its Next Meeting

Kenneth M. O’Brien

As we reported on June 15th, a group of concerned Southbridge citizens congregated the following day, to address the issues confronting their town.

Of the almost 80 articles that we have posted since starting this blog, the report that this group was organizing has been the seventh most popular among readers for all time.

As a result of such public interest many others and I have wondered what would happen next.

Finally we have some insight.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Prebeble Cause?

Kenneth M. O’Brien


Today the Worcester Telegram & Gazette ran an article titled, “Tornado Relief Goods Misdirected – Given Away By Local Priest”.

Allow me to state at the outset that I don’t believe that clerics should be involved in politics.
This is not a new opinion for me. It goes way back to my early days when Massachusetts had a multi-term congressman, Robert Drinan, a Jesuit Priest. Those who proclaim adherence to the Christian Gospel should be cognizant of the admonition that “…one cannot serve two masters.”

Leaving that aside, we have a variety of allegations in the article.

The most damning was the remark that, “Chief Charette said there is nothing for authorities to act upon because no one has complained to the police or Fire Chief Ciesla.
“If in fact these were earmarked for specific things,” Chief Charette said, “absolutely, it could be a criminal offense. But I do not think that at any time there was any intent to commit a crime here.”

However, Chief Charette said, Detective Sgt. Ryan Roettger is talking with the Worcester district attorney’s office “to see if this is something that rises to the level of a crime.”

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Casey Anthony Not Guily In Death Of Her Daughter

Kenneth M. O'Brien

A Florida jury has found Casey Anthony not guily of any charges relating to the death of her daughter, 2-year old Caylee Anthony.

She was found guilty on four charges of lying to law enforcement officials.

Report from Reuters.

What do you think?

The Obama Town Council

James J. “Joe” Marino
Guest Contributor

Why are our taxes the highest in the area and our sewer and water rates out of sight? The answer is simple. We have a liberal council with the mind set of Barack Obama , just keep spending and spending our tax dollars. We have a town manager who hasn’t seen a tax he doesn’t like and a town council who goes along to get along to take care of their friends and relatives. We have a council with no backbone to make cuts and who are only thinking of themselves to get reelected.

Barack Obama forgave a billion dollar loan to his Muslim friends and we who are on social security can’t even get a pay raise. If we can’t get a pay raise why is the town council giving out pay raises and ridiculous contracts?