Monday, July 29, 2013

Cambridge Machine notices Longfellow Bridge

1. Activities noticed.
2. Summary.

1. Activities noticed.

The listserve which is run by the Cambridgeport front organization of the Cambridge Machine has suddenly seen a bunch of discussion on the state’s repairs to the Longfellow Bridge. The Longfellow Bridge is the second bridge east of the BU Bridge.

Most of the comments simply gripe about the impact on transportation flow during construction. The leader of the front organization has twice, at least, decried the project for environmental harm, pollution from cars.

Now Councilor / State Representative Toomey has noticed the situation and has an order marked up for the next Cambridge City Council meeting on July 29, 2013.

2. Summary.

Over the past several weeks, we have reported outrageous destruction of two magnificent groves of trees on the Cambridge end of the Longfellow Bridge by the Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT).

This destruction follows on corrupt practices by the Cambridge Machine which supported the destruction of hundreds of trees between the BU Bridge and the Longfellow Bridge if you dig far enough and translate code words they way they can and normally would be translated. The destruction was supported in fine print of fine print, with a not at all surprising interpretation. The fought for destruction stretches pretty close to the Longfellow Bridge.

I will not go yet again into this particular outrage, except to note that the head of the front organization walked out of the February meeting (conducted on April 23) at exactly the point when the most recent part of the outrage was beginning, the blatantly fake vote.

No purpose was given for him leaving, although the most basic part of the outrage was the deferral of the February meeting for two months followed by the fake and horribly complicated vote being scheduled for the last ten minutes with the wording passed out at the beginning of the last ten minutes and Charles River supporters driven away by the delay.

There is no indication that the head of the group ever walked out on approvals by the Cambridge Machine for the “underpasses” proposal which was translated by the Governor’s funding to include bond authorization for destruction of those hundreds of trees.

Interestingly, the head of the group is now yelling about traffic being reduced to one lane from two in this project and never, to my knowledge, has he publicly objected to traffic on Western Avenue in Cambridge next to Cambridgeport getting the same treatment by the City of Cambridge. Very clearly, Western Avenue is a much greater nightmare for traffic traveling in that one direction than is the Longfellow Bridge.

Both projects are ongoing at the same time. The most important other differences between the two projects are

1. MassDOT is handling bicycles responsibly and Cambridge will supposedly confine bicycles to the sidewalks as part of their project.

2. MassDOT is irresponsibly destroying trees and Cambridge is not.

The environmental noise fits the standard package of the Cambridge Machine. Yell loudly about the lesser stuff and destroy, destroy, destroy, on the big stuff, while keeping the big destruction as secret as possible and acted on as rapidly as possible.

Such tactics exactly fit what looks like a norm, a norm which is hard to call approaching good faith, and, as usual, things are made as murky as they can get away with.