The sun still rises over an un-Olympic town

So what happened in Boston, and what next? A roundup of some Olympic thoughts:

Jon Keller says this is the Market Basket story all over again - the 1% once more was tone deaf:

Corporate welfare is under attack from left, right and center. A risky multi-billion dollar investment in what the critics loved to call "a three-week party for the international elite” with ticket prices unaffordable to most was always going to be a tough sell in a community that may be on the economic rebound, but still struggled with antiquated infrastructure, struggling schools, unaffordable housing, lack of resources to treat drug abuse, etc.

Market Basket is thriving more than ever, and Boston's flirtation with the Olympics will quickly become a historical footnote. But the message of both stories is clear.

Andy Tarsy ponders the collapse of the bid:

Resist the temptation to say this confirms Boston is a "just say no" kind of place. Those like Shirley Leung will do it (again) but you don't have to be that way. This episode is an example of civic engagement and tough questions that ultimately had inadequate answers. That's it. It is not connected to any past episode of us doing whatever we did when other things happened in the past. Our narrative is whatever we want it to be. It is not a destiny that makes us naysayers. Calling us that is cheap headline writing and just plain old beneath us.

David Meerman Scott looks at how Boston 2024 lost the social-media battle and so the war.

At the Boston Business Journal, Craig Douglas blames the Gang that Couldn't Shoot Straight:

It's about an A-list brigade of gunslingers whose aims and aspirations were at once inspiring and altogether self-defeating. They are the city's captains of industry whose collective vision pushed the boundaries of what's possible in a 400-year-old city, but whose self-assured missteps were worthy of The Three Amigos.

WBUR points to seven reasons the bid failed.

In case you were wondering what House Minority Leader Brad Jones thinks.

Boston now looks truly miserable and inhospitable.

Joan Vennochi: No Boston Olympics activists are heroes.

Dan Shaughnessy: Loss of Olympic bid a victory for Boston.

Shirley Leung: Bostonians are horrible; I hate you all.

So what happens to Widett Circle now?

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Comments

Widett Circle

In all of this "hyperbole" people seem to forget that blasting Widett Circle was going to have a massive social cost to the people who worked there. Meat cutters don't live in Westwood or Needham last time I checked. These facilities are close into the urban core or older mill towns and need what is essentially an immigrant labor force who need for the most part to live near the T and or near the neighborhoods where they live. Have you noticed that the largest food distribution areas of the metro area: Widett / Newmarket, Chelsea, Freetown / Fall River, Tewksbury, Methuen, and Taunton aren't filled with mega mansions and private golf courses?

That being said the land in Widett is becoming more and more valuable every day. The Flower Exchange across the XWay is under negotiations, a 5+ acre parcel abutting Andrew Station sold without any approvals for just under $14M last year and that is with the buyer having to clean it up. Across Dot Ave another parcel sold for $11M+ last year with no approvals.

Development is coming that way big time. Downtown has little way to flow. It is coming to what was considered the old South Bay area. It is important that the city hold the line on not giving away tax breaks in this area. You shouldn't hand out $100 bills for fun to people who live on streets like Sandy Valley Road or Jerusalem Road because you think it will help create new real estate value. It is going to happen anyway. Do not shortcut the people / taxpayers of Boston and the people who work there need to be handled properly as they were in the 1960's when they got tossed from Quincy Market.

Also, Shirley Leung has acquired full moron status. She is starting to make Michael Graham look sane.

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Just read Leung's column. I

Just read Leung's column. I'm sure some people will feel the same way but no regrets here. This isn't about being opposed to something just because it's new. It was about being opposed because the Olympics were not right for Boston. I think there were about 5 minutes where I was like, "Well this could be cool," and then I thought of all the ways we are not equipped to handle an event of this magnitude, as well as the massive inconvenience for everyone who lives--not just in Boston--but anywhere remotely close by any event taking place. Throw the debt on top of that and no way. I'll watch them on TV and will be happy to celebrate. But I do not want to get anywhere near that thing, sorry.

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I want to point out this

I want to point out this exemplifies what I'm trying to say my largest comment I made in the previous Olympics post. But I'll defer to Waquiot's post as he said roughly the same thing but much more succinctly.

The proposal was a logistical nightmare, corrupt, and expensive mess of a bid. The logistics was a nightmare as the main site is dependent of pulling off an engineering feat that remain mostly untested while also requiring to move quite a number of critical businesses. This - along with the other gaffs - help show signs of corruption. Which leads to the price screaming that to rise exponentially if we somehow had to build this thing with the price-tag on us.

Boston is not making this bid because it was a bid that offer far too few benefits for a whole lot of downsides and risks with way too many red flags on the character of the group pushing this (or this should be our reason, in my opinion). The bid look more like 1976 than 1984. The reasons of inconvenience that would last 2 weeks that is 9 years from now and "not equipped to handle an event of this magnitude" - i.e. a city that can't get things done - should not be the reason. I like to believe Boston is capable to handle an event of this magnitude - that we are a city that can gets things done. Just that, we are not idiots and do things looking to instruct us to shoot ourselves in the foot.

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Have to disagree with you...

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..on the point of Boston being able to get things done. When I lived in Allston I watched in amazement as multiple years went by with "construction" going on at the Harvard Ave and Comm ave T-stop. Multiple years. All they did was lay brick and build a new metal post overhang on either side. Pretty sure I could drive to New Bedford, load up a pickup truck full of Portuguese guys and have that job done inside a week, with hand tools only. Meanwhile during my semester in the Netherlands I watched an entire train station get torn down and rebuilt within 3 months.
Considering the bid would not be decided until 2017, that would give Boston 7 years to finish all the infastructure projects. Yeah, WOULD.NEVER. HAPPEN.

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I can top that

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I was a sophomore at BU when they started the constructon on Kenmore Station. They finished it something like 2 years after I graduated.

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You have a point

I, too, have gripped plenty of times at watching the station reconstruction - one exception was Science Park, which I have taken as a bit of some hope they are learning, regardless, you're right that the MBTA constructions is a sign that Boston-can't-get-things-done.

I should have caught myself on that in trying to explain my thoughts. The Olympic Bid was a bid that we had to kill. It was hinding tons of costs and will balloon, at our expense, if we have somehow won by some miracle. But, there lies the rub. Wanting to see the bid dead because it's a bad bid is very different than wanting to see the bid dead because we are inept.

Now, one might say "well... what wrong with that if it is true?" Well, it's a feedback loop. We'll continue to think this way as long our most recent memories is project like the goddamn Kenmore Station and the Big Dig. No one is going to expect and thus push for better if we continue to think this way. The only way to break this loop is a successful large project.

This bid wasn't, but we need to remember that. The reason this bid had to be dead is because it was a bad bid. Not because Boston can't get things done.

Believing in Boston-can't-get-things-done long enough and eventually we'll get Detroit.

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Widett Ver 2.0

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I think if we all go back and look at old news copy once more we will find that Bob Kraft (Patriots) was speculating on the Widett Circle area for a possible new soccer stadium BEFORE the land was Targeted by the Boston 2024 people. makes you wonder who he has tea with, eh?

At the same time the MBTA has also been looking at that general area as one of its (not favored) choices for an expansion of its rail yard train storage needs over the next 10-20 years. You will find that published In the MBTA's long-range planning docs (online). As it stands, the South Bay rail yard which is adjacent to that business area is already at capacity which is why the MBTA has been creating "lay over" yards at the ends of some lines like at Pawtucket, RI (which replaced a similar yard in Attleboro), Kingston (MA), Greenbush, and elsewhere along with those that already existed at Needham (MA), Rockport (MA), etc. As rail capacity demand increases, you need someplace to park the trains when not in use.

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Sorry Shirley...

" 'Boston is our city,' USOC board member Dan Doctoroff said during the last week’s televised debate on the Olympic bid. "

David Ortiz speaks for me.

"Finally, at long last, someone has gone broke underestimating the intelligence of the American public. And it couldn’t have happened to a nicer bunch — Boston 2024. There is a God." --HC

http://www.bostonherald.com/news_opinion/columnists/howie_carr/2015/07/c...

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I agree with HOWIE CARR??!?

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Finally, at long last, someone has gone broke underestimating the intelligence of the American public.

And it couldn’t have happened to a nicer bunch — Boston 2024. There is a God.

The lesson here is from Abraham Lincoln: You can’t fool all of the people all of the time — even in Massachusetts. It’s a great victory for the people, but it could easily have gone the other way.

Right on, Howie! How the hell did you find your way to my side of the tracks!?

What if Marsha Coakley had been elected governor? The state would already be on the hook for $5 billion in cost overruns.

Aaaaaaaaaaand, we're back. You mental midget. This was a victory of the people. You said it yourself not 10 words ago! Charlie Baker had NOTHING to do with why this bid was pulled.

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Charlie Baker

By simply standing aside, and pointedly refusing to actually endorse the bid until he had more data (from the forthcoming Brattle Group study), Gov. Baker did the opponents a huge service. I'm not confident that Coakley would have done the same, and I *know* Juliette Kayyem wouldn't have. (No idea how Steve Grossman or Don Berwick would have dealt with this.)

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Interpret what it may imply.

Interpret what it may imply. But along with refusing to endorse. The cut his made with the Convention Center and DMUs both hurt Boston 2024. They were originally depending a lot on the convention center for hosting events and to hold the press. The DMU (admittedly more suspect claim) because it was important to tennis center site.

Generally, the entire process, whenever Baker did an action. It always seem to be undercutting Boston 2024 in some way. Don't know if it was intentional or coincidental or bit of both.

That said, barring Coakley authorizing some kind of financial backing, an alternative history of have Coakley as our governor would probably play the same way.

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Memo to Shirley Leung

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Your fifteen minutes are now officially over. Please join the USOC and go somewhere else.

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What's next?

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What's next? New Orange and Red Line cars are still three years away. And that's if everything goes as planned, which it won't. That means 3+ more winters of wear on a system that we've known for more than a decade has been hopelessly out dated. Is there anything on the horizon to speed the process up, let alone ensure the current time frame? Absolutely not, and thats what's next. Enjoy your "victory," everyone.

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I think I asked this before...

I remember the bunch of buddliners in the North Station area waiting to be scrapped. I was told 'asbestos'. Well, OK, but they had to remove it anyway. Clean them up, new interiors, maybe replace the old 6-71 GM (I think) with new power and presto, stainless steel self propelled passenger cars.

Question: Why not?

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They tried rehabbing a couple of

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the Buddliners as self-propelled units in the early 1980s (IIRC). Converting the cars to push-pull units instead was deemed more cost effective from both a rebuilding standpoint and from a fuel consumption standpoint - while Budds were pretty good running as single or double units, they became horribly inefficient when running in longer trains (this is the reason most Chicago area railroads opted for push-pull gallery cars instead of Budds in the 1950s for their commuter operations).

The intital rebuild/conversion of a bunch of the Buddliners to push-pull cars was actually one of the MBTA's more sucessful rebuilds. However, when they decided to convert more of the cars, the company (Bombardier?) that did the oriignal work quoted a price that was over 100% greater than they did the first batch for.

Of course, this is now a moot point, as there are only two Budds left, and they apparently aren't even MBTA property.

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Budds were scrapped

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The Budds outside of North Station were sold for scrap but were never taken by the company that bought them, or else the deal fell through. They still show on the equipment roster (unofficial) as scrapped awaiting disposition. By FRA rules they cannot be towed out of there because it is likely the brakes no longer work, or would need upgrading to conform. As such they would have to be cut up where they are. They might be able to arrange a slow tow to Iron Horse in Billerica as a night move. That is where the "Screamer" locomotives recently went when they were taken out of service as new HSP46 units came on line.

Delays in the new build for the new Red and Orange cars are due to the need for the manufacturer (CNR of China) to establish a manufacturing plant in Massachusetts. At present a location in Pittsfield is on the radar. This is required to fulfill conditions of the federal "Buy America" Act as well as contractual conditions set forth by the MBTA/MassDOT to create jobs in MA.

Sometimes great ideas are bound by laws and regulations that are not understood by the public at large.

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Mark Arsenault

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So it just got off on the wrong foot....

http://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/2015/07/27/olympic-collapse-caused-mist...

As with many great disasters, it was not one thing that sank the bid, but an accumulation of mistakes and missed opportunities, a mishmashed message, unanswered attacks from aggressive opponents, and bad luck — in the form of 100-plus inches of snow.

And here I was thinking it died because it was a TERRIBLE idea for the city, promoted with greed, arrogance, lack of transparency, and lies.

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I think Mark is talking about

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I think Mark is talking about himself there. Boston 2024 was exposed as a scam right from the start and there was no way of fixing that outside of delaying the inevitable, which they were only able to do by spending money on their pantomime.

Outside of a few unscrupulous “captains of industry” and athletes with tenuous connections to the city, not a single person of note gave their full support to the bid. Nobody would stake their reputation on it.

Mark spent the past six months handling their PR under his byline at the Globe. And he did a horrible job of it.

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While I know you wrote that

While I know you wrote that in display of disdain for him. My memory of him during his time as GM and later Transportation Secretary was positive - as most of UHub. This is probably the last chance I get to point this out, I noticed and found it interesting that back in the early Olympics posts. Every posts was generating 100+ comments (and I guess still is). Then when the post that Rich Davey will be CEO - yeah that thread was relatively quiet.

I should also note, back when I was hoping for the ideal outcome of the Olympics. Rich Davey was one of my reasons. Admittedly, he looks pretty hack-y right now.

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The way Davey has been

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The way Davey has been slandered goes to show the level of thought a lot of people on the anti side put into their reasoning. But they get away with blindly calling everyone corrupt because that's the conventional wisdom. No mention of Davey's prior record as a public servant and his accomplishments at MassDOT and the MBTA (if you can't remember what he did, MarkK hates him so you know he was doing something right). But now Davey's only out to scam us.

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Davey

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Yes this is what bothers me about Rich Davey. And why did he have to get involved in the hot mess known as Boston2024. I LIKED Rich Davey when he worked for the state. Very personable, seems very approachable... a fresh 'face' for the T and the MBCR. (and yes, an accomplished person also)

But now his association with HotMess2024 makes me second guess him and his intentions. Although, one could just assume he was sucked up into HotMess2024 without really knowing how much heat he would have had to take from the public, so he may have just been a pawn in B2024's game of chess. (And truth be told, since he's considered apart of the Patrick administration, it's unlike.. as it was with Dr. Scott.. that he would ever get a job working in transportation for the state of MA.. at least under Cholly's watch.. so I am sure he was looking for a job and was courted by B2024)

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Winners..not heroes

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No Boston Olympics aren't heroes. It's all well and good to speak truth to power, but when there's no alternative proposed, no other long-term goal in place, no other challenge in hopes of establishing a new system that isn't founded on the "benevolence" of the developers, wheelers, and dealers in this city - all we've done is return to the status quo. It's the same city today sans Olympics as it was yesterday with the Olympics - it's the tin-eared legislature, the same byzantine development processes, the same BRA, the same MBTA, the same MassDOT, the same Mayor and the same City Council.

If No Boston Olympics participants want to be heroes - they have to challenge the status quo. Until then they're just the best at saying "no", even if "no" had to be said and said loudly. Let's hear what their plans for schools are? No public monies had been allocated for the Olympics, it's not like the city now has a slush fund to play around with in bettering communal circumstances. Let's hear what Dempsey's plan for improving the MBTA beyond what's been allocated in the current CIP and what's been approved by the legislature for the "Way Forward" 10 year plan. He's a former Deputy Secretary of Transportation, he's not unfamiliar with the area - the legislature has already funded or proscribed bonding authority for: GLX, South Station Expansion, the Green Line power study, Red & Orange rolling stock procurements, new GL cars to fill in headways for the extension, and South Coast Rail. I can think of myriad projects that aren't, but should be on our capital program - but the casting out of the Olympics out brings those project no closer to reality. So what's the plan? If we brought half the enthusiasm of No Boston Olympics to supporting infrastructure investment in Massachusetts, we'd be in a different place.

The Olympic deadline would've put some pressure on MassDOT to finally end this ridiculous staring contest with the USPS over South Station, and might've pushed them to actually engaging on a study of DMU implementation (which has now begun to die that slow-burn, slowly wilting away death that unloved projects tend to do. If anything we're in a more precarious position vis a vis public investment in infrastructure and schools without the looming Olympics.

I fail to see how the status quo is anyway changed.

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Now that Boston 2024 had been

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Now that Boston 2024 had been thoroughly told off we can plan for the next 3 generations, not for a 3 week party for rich tourists. We'll be able to enjoy Boston Common and Franklin Park instead of dealing with years of construction and security on them and having trees cut down to make way for Coca Cola bill boards. And we probably saved the city a billion dollars, assuming we still don't let these crooks get away with the 85% tax subsidy they want in Widett Circle.

I agree that they are not heroes. Anyone with common sense and access to Google can figure out in 10 minutes that hosting the Olympics is a terrible idea.

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Sometimes...

... just saying"NO!" to a bad idea is good enough.

BTW -- Blue Mass Group has become a very strange "Democratic" site -- it seems quite rife with ultra-capitalist libertarians (or at least Ayn-Rand-ites).

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Isn't it?

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It's a bit stuffy and clunky too.

I get the sense that 'reasonable' ideologues go there to try and peddle Randish nonsense as various facets of the right try to manipulate different tiers of public opinion.

One cohort rolls with the paranoid bigot red meat side while another tries to work liberals with artfully reasoned appeals to selfishness as if it were a virtue

We have a few of em here.

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False equivalency

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Boston2024 made all kinds of big promises about what they would do. It's not on the No side to then solve those problems, they were simply making the case that Boston2024 was making promises they couldn't keep.

Larger picture - one group of private citizens decided we should all sign on the line to commit to possibly paying for a temporary stadium, etc... They were not elected by any democratic process to do this, but it's their right to try. Another group of private citizens opposed that which is also their right. The key thing is that the people who actually had the power to commit public money to this bailed out on it.

It's on Baker and Walsh to work to solve these issues still just as it was prior to the conception of Boston2024. You make it sound like a popular, well supported publics work project was scuttled by a NIMBY minority which just isn't what happened.

Status quo has to be changed by electing people who will lead on these issues not by giving the Sepp Blatters of the world free money.

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Ho, Hum, Done - now let's get to work!

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Now that the distraction is gone, can we please restart the conversation about constructing a multimodal, Grand Junction-using, neighborhood-connecting, river access-enhancing WEST STATION right now?

If New York is willing to try to rebuild an entire airport in the middle of one of the most (most?) densely populated big cities in the country, perhaps at least we can build a train station plus on what is mostly vacant land (occupied currently, ironically enough, mostly by train tracks)?

Seriously, let's take the rest of the summer off, and come back ready to do some real fricken work in September.

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Yes but

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You see, NYC is actually a world class city.

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I like the enthusiasm - but

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I like the enthusiasm - but activating the Grand Junction needs far more than enthusiasm.

Let's just talk stock of how ithe GJ currently employed: a daily freight to Chelsea produce terminal, and daily transfers of MBTA and Amtrak equipment from to and from Southside to the main engine terminal at BET northside. In order to proceed to North Station will have to enter the already congested terminal district north of the station. Non-compliant DMUs cannot traverse this district unless they receive a time-separation waiver from the FRA (which is unlikely), compliant DMUs are not at a point where they're cost effective. In turn every main eastern egress from Cambridge slams head on into the GJ, all at grade crossings. The MBTA already studied re-routing Worcester Line peak hour trains over the GJ nearly 10 years ago, they found the traffic impacts (especially at peak) to be too severe and they found the demand for non-peak Worcesters to be too low to justify the impacts.

So long as the MBTA needs to shuttle the odd trainset south-to-north and vice versa, so long as DMUs are bound by mainline railroad grade-crossing regulations, and so long as DMUs are an as-of-yet unstudied mode in Boston's circumstances nothing can happen on the GJ. For the all talk of DMUs, the MBTA still has not completed and up-to-date implementation study - and bonding authority for DMU implementation has been ceremoniously kicked back year to year on each successive CIP. The GJ looks just so, so great on a map, connecting Allston and Kendall without having to plough through downtown congestion or cram into the 66, wait for the 70, or wait even longer for the 64. Yet it won't happen unless all those previous barriers are unwound. And unwinding them will take a while and will require greater public investment than is already allotted to MassDOT.

GJ will be a latter phase of transit development in Boston, there are other, far more executable improvements that needs to come first (Blue-Red, Blue-Lynn, Green-Rt 16, Green-Needham, Green-Porter, Orange-Rozzie/Westie/Needham, bus lanes for the key routes, DMU implementation on Fairmount, F/W Line to Riverside, South Station Expansion, etc...)

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Exemption

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only helps a little. The terminal district is still a mess, the grade crossings will still bottle Cambridge traffic and screw with the 1 and CT1 (which together account for 15k riders per day, second most in the system behind the 20k that take SL4/5). We won't get the waiver for it anyways, too much freight activity by Sand and Gravel and the Everett and Chelsea terminals. GJ needs to be severed from the CR and freight systems entirely, which means either upgrading the outer Framingham loop between northside and southside or somehow building another maintenance terminal on the southside. If it's severed we can flip it to Green and run a boomerang route in and out of Boston.

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There are now FRA compliant

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There are now FRA compliant DMUs that are capable of accelerating and braking at rates required to operate through the grade crossings like light-rail. Although Baker's MBTA capital plan for this year pulled the funding to buy DMUs, the MBTA still has a procurement out there to get proposals from builders for FRA compliant DMUs. They just pushed the bid date back to December of this year. They'll have an actual price number to work with before they decide to resume the DMU project or kill it for good.

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How hard would it be to take

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How hard would it be to take the extreme path and bury the Grand Junction?

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One Percent?

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Can we please stop saying 1%? I really don't think people making 400K are the problem here or had anything to do with the Olympics bid. Lazily blaming everything on the 1% comes off as just being jealous of success.

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You've got to hand it to Howie.

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Fox "news" should have him do their new employee orientation. He's a real master of deflecting the view away from his pals, and what a fine line he's treading here. Somehow, if Martha Coakley had won, we'd be in debt for the Olympics. Fortunately, we have Howie's man, Charlie Baker in office, who, is responsible for the countless debt we're still paying off from the Big Dig, which was under his (mis) management. Not that I'm a Martha fan, but talk about b.s...

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never ceases to amaze me about any Big Dig conversation:

Charlie Baker is somehow Himmler enabling his evil overlords, while
Fred Salvucci and Mike Dukakis still prompt signs of the cross as sainted progressives speaking truth to power.

Whenever somebody stoops to blaming the embedded infrastructure of Republican 1%ers in MA, I know it's time to break out the telephoto lenses. Unicorns pooping rainbows can't be far behind.

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zombie claims

like zombie ideas that never seem to die no matter how wrong. Yup, I blame Salvucci and Dukakis too.

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Yes, because greed is divine.

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All of the worlds great religions go to some length to extol greed and hogging as the highest virtue.

Lord Christ devoted a significant part of His Sermon on the Mount to greed as the greatest tribute to God.

Buddha wrote so many sutras on the magnificence of ostentation, hogging and grabbing everything in sight, that a special and little known collection of them had to be made for the Yahooyana doctrine.

The Prophet made greed a central tenet of an under appreciated part of the Quran as did Ali Hussein, martyred founder of the Shia sect.

Why can't you people just grub and grab away without expecting the rest of to make saints of you? Jeeze. The old school malefactors of great wealth had the sense to lay low and STFU.

The idea that greed is heroic is sleazy and pathetic and corrosive to a broader social contract when it takes off like a toxic algae bloom and poisons life quality for everyone else.

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Lying low and S-ingTFU

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The old school malefactors of great wealth had the sense to lay low and STFU

I am not asking this in a snarky manner: can you identify some of the people that you are thinking of because the people I thought of off the top of my head (Carnegie, Rockefeller, Vanderbilt, Jobs, Gates, Hancock, etc.) don't fit the description of either lying low or S-ingTFU - and in some cases, I think that we might all be better off for it.

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If they didn't hog so much

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... there'd be no need to give anything back in self aggrandizing charity moves. Jobs never gave anything away and died before he took time to think about it.

The old school 1950s CEOs viewed grandiose compensation as an embarrassment because it looked bad for shareholders and stake holders. The newer bunch is more like the robber barons of yore making big useless hoards.

Microsoft should have just been running dividends and setting better price points. Their bloatware OS stuff is made by piles of contract temps and then ineptly vetted by the higher status regular employees, who do a crappy job.

Windows 8 anyone?

Carnegie found himself in a minor labor war with the Homestead Strike.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homestead_Strike

While the run up to 2008's crash was marked by all manner of fawning stories of asshole CEO's like Jack Welch, eventually the thrill was gone and all that remains is a bunch of sociopathic greedheads who have been the shock troops of wealth inequality.

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I disagree with Shirley Leung, BUT...

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While I think Shirley is wrong that the defeat of the Olympics is just us being us again (I actually think is is more a reflection of our better selves), I am not comfortable with the tone and nastiness of some of those who are criticizing her. She has a perspective and it is valid albeit misguided. In fact, over the past couple of years I have found many of her columns to be much more daring than we usually get from the scribes in this town. I would hate for her position on this issue and the backlash against it to cause her to be silenced on other issues (or even this issue) as we move forward. Shouting her down and calling her stupid and other names is beneath us, beneath the victory that was just achieved, and short-sighted.

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Citations needed

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Seriously, what's an example of a good column from her? The ones I've read were either fact free boosterism of the business leaders of the region or criticisms of people who dare disagree with said business leaders.

What's an interesting thought provoking thought she's expressed which is relevant to her position as business columnist for the Boston Globe?

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About those Globe business columnists...

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I make no comment about the quality of Shirley's columns, but, then again, so far as I am concerned, that space has been dead to me since Steve Bailey left for London.

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Thanks

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The Friends of the Public Garden are also owed a great vote of thanks. When the first bid came out and described the damage that would be done to the Boston Common and Garden, the Friends organized a very sophisticated behind the scenes campaign against it. Proof they succeeded was in the lack of anything in either the Common or Garden in bid 2.0. They did a great job.

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Can I just say...

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How relieved and proud I am, that the people of Boston were able to defeat this scam?

I feel better about Boston right now than I have in years.

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