Browse By

Manic Monday Markup 12/16/13…

…And the World:

We begin today in Chile, where former President Michele Bachelet has won a new term as President running on a platform of reversing the country’s inequality, although there are doubts.  The Chilean constitution forbids consecutive terms of as president. Bachelet previously served from 2006-2010.  She defeated right-wing candidate, Evelyn Matthei.  The New York Times’ correspondent for that region of South American noted the day before the election that the region seems to be empowering women—politically at least.

The Washington Post has put together a survey of the refugee crisis caused by the Syrian Civil War through eighteen stories of refugees.

Nelson Mandela was laid to rest in his home village of Qunu, the final stage of the grand sendoff South Africa has given its most famous son.  Quotes from the ceremony collected by the South Africa Times.

Elsewhere on Africa, South Sudan stops a coup and Tunisia’s political parties have agreed to a caretaker government until new elections can be held next year.

The Feds:

With working, The Wall Street Journal reports that Insurance Companies are planning a huge advertising blitz to get people to sign up.  The story is behind a paywall, but today’s Morning Plum by Greg Sargent quotes the key details.  Meanwhile, Paul Ryan, the reasonable voice in the room on the House-Senate budget deal is threatening…a debt ceiling crisis!  Ryan Cooper looks at what this shows about GOP Economic Policy.  Spoiler!  It didn’t work out too well for Herbert Hoover.

Rhode Island’s gubernatorial race inches closer to getting a historic name.  Claiborne Pell, the grandson of the famous senator, is hiring exploratory staff, starting with a well-known political hand in the Ocean State.  In the same vein, The Atlantic profiles Providence Mayor Angel Tavares, who is already running for governor.

A federal judge questions the constitutionality of the NSA’s bulk collection of data in a ruling that could shake up the controversial program.

The CT Mirror has a look  at the impact of the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown has had on Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy.  Twenty-six people were murdered, including 20 children.  The anniversary of the massacre was this past Saturday.

Texas’ filing period has closed for its elections next year.  Why not contesting more if not as many races as possible is just stupid for Democrats.

The State of Things:

Masslive has an article about Scott Lively running for governor.  To be fair, Lively announced that back in September and Fire Dog Lake among others (like us) noticed back then.

Masslive does have some newsier info about what may happen if Hampden County District Attorney Mark Mastroianni is confirmed by the US Senate to be Federal Judge before his term is up. Mary McNally, an assistant DA and director of operations, would seek an interim appointment from governor Deval Patrick as well as the office itself in November.

Problems continue to bedevil Massachusetts Health Care website and the state agency running it puts the blame squarely on the contractor.  The Boston Herald says that the state may cancel payments from the IT contractor.

Westfield has no state representative right now, but it does have a candidate to fill the seat.  A special election is expected, but no date has been set.  The Reminder interviews the candidate Democrat John Velis.

…And Scott Brown finally ditches Massachusetts for New Hampshire.

City Slickers:

Pete Goonan has the rundown of Springfield’s City Council meeting tonight.  The Council is expected to informally choose its Council Preisdent and consider ordinances for street side food vendors and the School Committee’s salary.

More on the mobile food vendor ordinance the Council will consider via The Reminder.

Also by Paul Tuthill today, anti-casino activists are questioning the impartiality of Gaming Commissioner Bruce Stebbins, a former City Councilor who also worked for the city’s Planning and Economic Development Department.

Major public works project for Springfield about to begin and you may never see it: replacement of the city’s primary water lines from Provin Mountain revervoir.

Twitter Chatter:

The other side of Health Insurers’ plans to spend lavishly on advertising is that the Republican party is betting that Obamacare will be, or rather, already is a flaming wreckage of a policy.  Therefore, a number of “reformed tea party” people are seeking their old jobs back, the New York Times had reported (we did not link to it).  Today we award the tweet prize to Dave Weigel, a political reporters at for noting how the Times called one former congressman Bob Dold, a reform tea partier after calling him a moderate in 2012 when he ran for reelection.  Now we obviously love the Times here, but when they do something ridiculous like contradict themselves, possibly for the political benefit of a politicians, that deserves notice and Weigel’s patented deadpan tweets expose that well.