Tuesday, February 08, 2011

A POSSIBLE, TEMPORARY Win in Cambridge on the Grand Junction

1. Introduction.
2. Three members of the audience.
3. The Cambridge City Council.
4. Actual issues.
5. Summary.

1. Introduction.

It almost never is possible to fully evaluate controversial issues in front of the Cambridge City Council.

Having said that, it is possible that we had a very big but temporary win in Cambridge last night.

The Cambridge City Council discussed the Grand Junction passenger train proposal coming out of the state.

There was, I believe, one person in the audience who commented on the issue. I leafleted with a flier on the issue from Friends of the White Geese.

As usual, there were several people in the audience who have been active in Cambridge politics. My leaflet went into detail concerning the Urban Ring subway proposals and placed them in context with the Grand Junction rail proposal from a Cambridge perspective. It is highly likely that this was the first time that many of these people had been exposed to something other than a lie concerning key parts of the Urban Ring subway proposal.

It is always impossible to exactly characterize things in Cambridge. The facts from the Cambridge Pols concerning the Urban Ring subway have consistently including key falsehoods, passing off the inferior BU Bridge crossing as the only thing under consideration by the state.

Cambridge pols commonly are off in their own world, a world with very major disconnects from reality. That is because their elected officials are running on platforms targeted to please a very concerned electorate. Trouble is that the elected pols are on the wrong side on too many issues which are key to the voters. So you get a view of the world which is strikingly different from the view seen by the world outside Cambridge. The differences are so major that it silly to call these false statements other than lies.

I have long given up on trying to distinguish between the knaves and the fools. From a practical purpose, there is no difference. If the fools can rejoin reality at some point and treat the knaves with the treatment the knaves deserve, then there might be value in making a distinction.

I would be happy to pass on the flier. Please give me a request at boblat@yahoo.com.

2. Three members of the audience.

I spoke with a woman from North Cambridge who was there on another issue. She has been active in the planning for the extension of the Green Line streetcar / subway branch which currently ends at Lechmere in East Cambridge.

It was such a pleasure talking with her. It is so rare to work with somebody from Cambridge who is active in politics and who is in contact with reality, as opposed to what the Cambridge Pols put out. She understood the Urban Ring issues and she discussed them intelligently.

A second person I spoke with was a man sitting near her who did not talk during the meeting. He looked familiar and asked probing but knowledgeable questions. In retrospect, I presume he was a reporter, perhaps from the Cambridge Chronicle.

The third person who stood out very clearly was a probable (never possible to really be sure) victim of the Cambridge Pols. He bitterly opposed the Grand Junction plans and had been attending a lot of the meetings. Trouble is that he rejected the reality of the non stop con games from the Cambridge Pols out of hand.

He clearly had information I did not have concerning the various meetings which the state has been conducting. He reported pretty much unanimous objection by various residents to the proposal. Trouble is that he behaved (like many victims) like somebody in denial. He very clearly rejected out of hand anybody who would actually talk a reality which differs from that passed out by the Cambridge Pols. He saw my flier. My flier spoke reality in great detail, but he has been given a lot of lies.

He did not want to talk.

3. The Cambridge City Council.

It is pretty much impossible to tell when you are exposed to an orchestrated discussion from the Cambridge City Council.

In retrospect, last night looked like an orchestrated discussion.

Toomey made strong points against the state’s proposal and tore apart another councilor’s supposed attempts to maneuver. The other councilor repeated his comments before Toomey spoke and then backtracked after Toomey spoke.

As usual, the most destructive member was Davis. She always sounds like she is trying to be reasonable while maneuvering into bad territory.

The rest spoke, in general terms, against the proposal. But one member picked up a key point from my flier, a point which proves the lie that has been passed out in Cambridge that is the Cambridge version of political correctness on facts of the Urban Ring. That councilor’s responding quickly to that point in my flier raised a very real flag in retrospect. Did my very exact communication of reality on the Urban Ring move members of the council toward positions which have respect for their constituents on the related Grand Junction proposal?

It is always impossible to tell with certainty.

4. Actual issues.

I have gone into the real issues on this matter before on this blog.

All I am really trying to communicate is last night’s meeting.

The one new issue of possible substance was brought out from me by the reporter.

It is increasingly looking like the Grand Junction proposal is part of an attempt by the state to back out of the plans to expand South Station for South Coast Rail. It certainly would be quite expensive to tear down the adjacent post office and, I presume, pay for the replacement post office. Building that post office further into the South Boston Waterfront would also take up prime land which the state would rather see developed for business.

So Cambridge and Worcester/Framingham are being shafted. The initial foray is "just a few" trains. It looks like they are maneuvering to move all Worcester/Framingham trains from South Station to North Station and putting the South Coast Rail trains in the emptied trackage in South Station.

5. Summary.

It was a pleasure to see perhaps a little favorable move out of the Cambridge City Council.

Regrettably, the standard game in Cambridge is: “I am your friend, I am your friend, I am your friend, have I got a deal for you.”

The apparent victim of the Cambridge Pols who is in denial showed very clearly how effective the standard con is in Cambridge.

The woman from North Cambridge who intelligently discussed issues showed the possibility of responsible behavior in Cambridge.