Saturday, July 19, 2014

The Cambridge, MA (USA) Machine, their Destruction at Alewife, proper treatment of victims.

1. Introductory.
2. The record of this fake group.
a. Zoning Issues.
b. Most basic policy.
3. What should be done at Alewife.
4. Hurting the feelings of victims.

1. Introductory.

I have had an ongoing discussion concerning the irresponsible destruction of the environment at Alewife by the City of Cambridge and the Department of Conservation and Recreation with the invaluable assistance of their influenced “Friends” of the Alewife Reservation which, as with so many Cambridge Machine front organizations is anything but friends of the Alewife Reservation.

Here is a photo attached to a puff piece of the City of Cambridge bragging about the destruction.  The only place I have seen the puff piece printed is the Robert Winters blog.

The trees in the background are identical to trees which formally occupied the entire area of the photo.  They were destroyed by Cambridge and the DCR with the assistance of the con centered on the fake group.

I will follow with the record of this fake group and then report helpful comments from the exchange in the past few days.

Interestingly, I know both of the people I was talking with outside the fake group.  I consider the pricipal talker a typical victim of the Cambridge Machine.  The second person “does not compute” to quote the inimitable Data from Star Trek: The Nest Generation.

2. The record of this fake group.

a. Zoning Issues.

This group was created nearly 20 years ago by Ellen Mass after discussions with Cambridge’s Department of Conservation and Recreation.

They have spent most of that period yelling at private developers obeying Cambridge Zoning.

I do not honestly know if they have ever been so responsible as to submit a zoning change proposal for the area.  That seems to be a moderate action in a group which opposes the zoning.

I do know that in 1999 and 2000 I assisted Sheila Cook and I did the legal work in the drafting a zoning petition for the area.

The zoning proposal was quite wide.  It only succeeded in changing the zoning of a parking lot owned by the DCR and rented to the then owners so that the DCR property was zoned for open space.

Key in the petition was a provision which amended the definition of “open space” in the zoning ordinance to make it meaningful.

My understanding is that Sheila was bullied into withdrawing that provision by a Cambridge Machine operative.

Several years later, the fake group conducted a celebration of the return of the parking lot to the environment.  The developer stated that he was doing this to comply with the zoning.

The fake group proudly introduced all its officers and gave some sort of impression that the fake group had done something.

No introductions or even mention, as I recall, was made of the two people key in the zoning change, Sheila Cook and me.  My understanding is that members of the fake group treated Sheila like crap for filing the zoning petition.

b. Most basic policy.

Ellen Mass promptly prohibited discussion of possible destruction of the very major public holdings.

She ordered that only fighting against the private developers obeying zoning would be allowed.

That was nearly 20 years ago.

The exact same policy was repeated in the discussion. Private destruction is imminent.  They do not have time to fight about the public properties.

The speaker was unable to respond to the accomplished destruction of acres of Alewife by Cambridge and the DCR and the possibility that more was coming.

This is classic company union.  Fighting against private developers obeying zoning is titling at windmills.  Fighting against irresponsible governmental destruction by a government with a lot of city councilors lying that they are pro environment, if done meaningfully, can be very successful

At minimum, fighting the fake environmentalists would allow truly concerned people to get rid of the fake environmentalists.

But this is yet another fraudulent group which is part of the same entity which is using similar tactics including other blatantly corrupt tactics in their fight to destroy on the Charles River.

3. What should be done at Alewife.

The nominal person I was talking with repeatedly asked me what I wanted at Alewife.  I repeatedly answered.

Here is a good one.

That person commented: “Identifying the problems is not a solution.”


Now, how many times do I have to say that underground storage tanks are needed to control flooding in the area, by easement taken by the City of Cambridge under all new construction, under public streets, public playgrounds, under T facilities to the extent possible, and under whatever else can be determined. Easement payment and costs of construction have to be provided by Cambridge, the DCR, and whatever else is possible.

Essential to this would be a reversal of the most basic principal under which Ellen Mass created the organization:


yell at private developers and ignore the very major responsibility inherent in the behavior of the city and DCR governments, including their own development and including the zoning.


A very major part of the government problem is the outrageous destruction of acres of Alewife with this group telling people not to look at the destruction, and with Ellen Mass publicly supporting the destruction before the fact and bragging about it after the fact.

That destruction and the circumstances behind it, particularly since you continue to parrot Ellen Mass' nonsense while claiming to be defending the areas being destroyed, has to be reversed.

This is company union behavior. It has to be reversed.

The City of Cambridge, DCR and the towns as applicable have to be held accountable. If you have people silly enough to try to go to bizarre extremes to get around the municipally created zoning, go to it, but nobody who controls that money will respect Cambridge having it both ways. They will see Cambridge keeping irresponsible zoning and destroying its own property while expecting other folks to pay to buy privately threatened property whose value is multiplied by the irresponsible zoning.

At the same time, Ellen Mass' positions on public destruction are such that she has no business in the group IF the group is protecting Alewife and respecting what its name says.

4. Hurting the feelings of victims.

Things get a bit confusing.  I think this the best way to communicate.

The person who does not compute commented:

“No, Bob, "Negative" here means turning people off to your view with aggressive, destructive rhetoric that defeats your purpose.”


I have been living with Cambridge influenced groups for the last 40 years.

Treating their nonsense with undeserved respect gets what I am getting from [person 1].  Repeated nonsense as to whether or not I have stated my position.


Follow on comment.


I live in reality. Our world lives in reality.

There have been two victories at Alewife.

1. Sheila Cook's zoning change which I wrote and whose results have been denied appropriate credit.

2. The destruction of acres of Alewife by Cambridge and the DCR, whose results have been denied appropriate credit.

Cambridge has a massive, Cambridge influenced organization pulling a whole bunch of people's strings and fooling people into stabbing themselves in the back.

The strongest justification for their behavior is ALWAYS that the victims are in denial. You will hurt the feelings of the victims.

A couple more victories, very major.

1. The Inn at Harvard, which Harvard wanted 72% larger. A Machine operative stole major protections on the Harvard Square side streets from our agreement with the Cambridge City Council under the flat out lie: you have made your deal with the City Council. Now you must deal with the Planning Board.

2. The residential nature of the Harvard holdings south of Mt. Auburn Street are a direct result of my saving 10 Mt. Auburn Street.

Throughout, I have been attacked by folks who have been lied to, deceived and corrupted from their own good.

What is the justification?


Don't stand up to people who have been shafted by those they have falsely trusted.

You will hurt the feelings of the victims.


But they have been shafted by people they have trusted.

So the victims get to declare victory and Cambridge's irresponsible government gets another VERY REAL victory over victims who have been conned into stabbing themselves in the back.

You can have your fake victories and soothed feelings.

I support what [person 1] said he wants in the first place.

I condemn the warping of his goals so that he is fighting against his own goals.