Longtime local talk host Paul Benzaquin dies

Benzaquin, also author of a book on the Cocoanut Grove fire, was 90.

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    Sad to hear about Paul

    Sad to hear about Paul Benezequin's passing.

    He was a great Boston iconoclast. I recall back in the 80's listening to his Saturday evening talk show which was of course during a state budget crisis.

    This was in the day of CLT, or Citizens For Limited Taxation. and there would be callers who would call up, starting off, "I'm a small-business man...." as if this were a credential for balancing the state budget. Benzequin, with a certain crusty, drollness would interject, "how small are you?"

    Usually the callers were so wound up, but the linguistic retort was emblematic of how the conversation would go. The caller would suggest that if the state used the same practice that the caller used in running his hardware store.... etc. etc.

    Yes, boys and girls, back before the Reagan administration repealed the federal "fairness doctrine", broadcasters that ran their business on the public airwaves had to provide some public service which included providing a diversity of opinions, so liberal states like Massachusetts actually had liberal voices on the air instead of the ersatz canned conservatism of today.

    On a side note, everyone should read Benzaquin's book about the Coconut Grove fire, he is a compelling writer about one of Boston's great tragedies.