Nefarious circle

Letters to the Boston editor: August 4, 2006
By EDITORIAL  |  August 2, 2006

I could not believe what I was reading when your editorial suggested an independent commission like the one that investigated 9/11 should investigate the improprieties of the Big Dig. First, I would like to point out who the “independent” 9/11 commission was, since you have obviously dropped the ball here. It was headed by Phillip Zelikow, member of the National Security Council for Bush I. He is director of the Aspen Strategy Group, whose members are Brent Scowcroft, Dick Cheney, Paul Wolfowitz, and Condoleezza Rice. Next we have Thomas Kean, former New Jersey governor, director of the Amerada Hess Corporation. He has business ties to Saudi investor Khalid bin Mahfouz, who has been accused by some of bankrolling Al Qaeda. He is also a close Bush-family friend. Next is John Lehman, former secretary of the Navy under Reagan. He was disgraced in a number of scandals, including Tailhook. Then we have Richard Ben-Veniste, partner in the law firm Mayer, Brown, Rowe, and Maw, who represented Westfield Corporation, insurance beneficiaries of the WTC destruction. And so forth.

These people were hardly “independent.” Remember: $40 million was spent on investigating Clinton, and only $600,000 to investigate 9/11. Remember: Cheney called Senate minority leader Tom Daschle and told him to limit the 9/11 investigation; soon thereafter Daschle received anthrax-tainted letters.

I hope that in its zeal for truth, honor, and the American Way, the Phoenix will not put its foot in its mouth again as it did with this article. Have real guts and let’s get our country back from the fascist liars and murderers that have taken it away.
Jeff Tanzer
Salem

Breathing room
My complaint with MassPIRG is a little different from “Saying ‘No más!’ to MassPIRG." I agree with their position on most things, but they don’t do anything. How come they never put any questions on the ballot? I think the land of activist judges might vote for a wind farm or something progressive if they had the chance. It took a few weeks for some religious nuts to get the paid-for Gay.com sign taken down from the top of the Cambridgeport Saloon. Why can’t MassPIRG or someone mobilize against those offensive Hummer commercials? Look at MassPIRG’s site. They are right on the money about most things, but all they can do is suggest that you send an e-mail to your local rep.
Ron Fink
Medford

I’m with the author about MassPIRG being overly in your face. As to “hard work” — that’s part of the problem: they completely take over and block the sidewalk like they own it in the apparent belief that, after all, we’re doing a good thing so that makes whatever we do okay and much more worthwhile than whatever you’re trying to do. I’ve spent extended parts of the past few years on crutches and they’ve made it a regular hell to get around some places, particularly where the sidewalks are relatively narrow. Zero consideration, even when they’ve landed a mark and won’t accomplish anything by continuing to block the sidewalk. And no, a polite request to move doesn’t always accomplish anything. I have no problem with their ideas, whether or not I agree on a given issue, but if they care about other people, as they claim, they should treat them with some respect. You can learn to solicit without doing your best imitation of a Jersey barrier. It makes them and their agenda of the day just about as appealing as one.
Kim Malo
Allston

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