Tag Archives: Politics

A Sort Of Good Friend

The South Shore Hospital has been a good friend of Weymouth for many years. I’m sure they are now the largest employer in town and certainly one of the largest on the South Shore. They have grown over the years from a single brick building on the corner of Main and Columbian Street to a multi building facility that spans acres along Route 18 and over to Columbian Square. Lots of money goes through South Shore Hospital; not too long ago I spent an hour and a half there and it cost me over $4,500, but I’ll save that complaint for another day. While you’re reading this complaint, keep in mind that this hospital does not pay taxes. I haven’t done the math, so it’s difficult to say whether the benefit to the Town Of Weymouth monetarily, is positive or negative; and certainly the association this town has had with the hospital isn’t just about statistics, although it would be good to know.
For me, the relationship of this town and this hospital is symbolized by a stretch of Columbian Street which is about 200 yards long. I’ve been traveling down that section of road for many years and there have been many changes, all brought on, and I’m sure partially paid for, by South Shore Hospital. They have basically taken over ownership of this part of Columbian Street. There once was a church on the corner at Fogg Road, which was torn down long ago and paved over to be used as a parking lot for the hospital, even though it does not own the land. The church maintains a good relationship with the hospital and gets to use the lot on Sundays and even lets the hospital have their annual outing on the front lawn of the church with one of those big tents. The grass gets a little beat up and sometimes the tent crew drives a stake through the sprinkler system but it all seems to work out in the end. The positive outweighs the negative, I think.
The hospital has their own security team, who drive around in shiny new vehicles to make sure only patients park in the parking lot. Not even their own employees can park there. They park all throughout Columbian Square pretty much anywhere they can take up a spot that a tax paying consumer would normally use to shop in the local stores. They’ve made up for that inconvenience by beautifying this section of roadway. There’s new sidewalks, signage and plantings, and they cut through the pavement in a couple of spots and installed nice brick cross-walks. It looks so good I’m thinking of doing it in front of my house as soon I figure out how to cut through that asphalt street. Of course you can’t park on that street anymore, in fact, don’t even stop, you’ll get a ticket; but hey, I suppose the benefit outweighs the detriment.
When you travel toward the traffic light at Route 18, be prepared to stop for emergency vehicles, trucks at the loading dock, cars entering and exiting the parking lots; and all those folks using the crosswalks, predominantly marked, telling you to stop for pedestrians. There’s no way you could go over 10 miles per hour on that stretch of road. The funny thing is, somebody important must get after our police department because I see where they installed one of those speed monitoring signs, you know, the ones that clock your speed. It was right there beside the emergency entrance. I couldn’t build up enough speed to make it go over 15 mph. What’s crazy is that people speed through Columbian Square all the time, and nobody ever stops for pedestrians in the crosswalks; and the police are never in the square. You’d think with all those tax-paying merchants in the square that the town could do something about that.
When you finally get down to the traffic light at Route 18, you know, the one with the camera, you can turn right on red. The problem there is that the hospital put a nice big, brick sign there so there’s no way you can see oncoming traffic unless you straddle the crosswalk and keep the nose of your vehicle perilously close to getting clipped. There probably should be a “no turn on red” sign put there before somebody gets killed, either in the crosswalk, or by getting blind-sided. Maybe they will eventually, once the hospital decides that the negative outweighs the positive.
If the hospital can convince our police force to monitor the speed on Columbian Street, then maybe they could also pay to have a police presence in the square, full time. Now that would be a positive for everyone.


Keep Keith

Keith Olbermann’s indefinite suspension turned out to be 2 days. I’m sure the guy who thinks he’s Mr. Olbermann’s boss felt it wasn’t worth the grief that would have resulted in a longer stint in exile. Liberals were already organizing a petition protesting the obvious infringement of his rights and whether or not an apology was in order. Not to be “left out”, I went digging through the archives for my “Keep Keith” button. I used to wear it in school during the early seventies, not so much for political reasons but because my name is Keith and I thought it was kind of funny.

The Keep Keith buttons were distributed about that time, when then U.S. Representative Hastings Keith was running for re-election. I can’t remember who was opposing him but Keith won. We were part of the 12th District back then. Gerry Studds eventually succeeded Mr. Keith and later on the 12th District was dissolved and Weymouth became part of the 10th District. Bill Delahunt took over after Gerry Studds retired and now it appears Bill Keating, another Democrat will succeed the retiring Delahunt. There was fear amongst us True Blues that the Republican candidate, Jeff Perry might actually have a chance, but in the end, a scandal regarding an illegal strip search of a young girl (Mr. Perry is a former police officer) was his undoing. If Mr. Perry had won, he would have been the first Republican to represent Weymouth in the U.S. House Of Representatives since Hastings Keith in 1973.

Slurpees And A Movie

Jon Keller writes after all the election hoopla-

“Can Friday really, truly, finally have arrived?

I believe it has, and I don’t know about you but after what we’ve all been through this week, I’m ready to get away from it all with a good movie.”

Stan replies, injecting some humor about President Obama’s recent comment regarding Slurpees

You might be on to something. How about all the pols get together for a movie. Republicans on one side of the theater with red Slurpees and Dems on the other with blue Slurpees. I heard Apocalypse Now is out on Blu-ray. What could be more sobering than that? The horror…the horror.

As for me, Slurpees give me a headache and I want to see how the Pat’s defense handles Peyton Hillis.

Post Election Whining

John Keller says,

“With regard to Gov. Patrick, does it dawn on his worst critics that his re-election might have been helped by backlash against their sometimes excessive animosity towards him?”

This is a good point. I think Mass. voters are pretty smart. They’re not going to fall for a constant barrage of negativity from those critical of a candidate’s policies across the board. Deval Patrick astutely tapped into that with his accentuating the positive versus Baker’s negative spin on the state of Mass. Blaming our Governor for unemployment and raising taxes then not giving him credit for Mass. slowly improving economic numbers is not a fair assessment of the past couple of years.
The same will be true with our President. Like it or not Barack Obama has worked hard to get legislation passed that will change health care and regulate financial institutions, which is exactly what he set out to do from the beginning of his term. The incessant negativity from tea partiers and the right, and the immediate promise to undo what he has accomplished, will only help him get re-elected in two years.