Trail mix

Ads ’n’ ends from the media front
By JOHN CARROLL  |  October 11, 2006

THE AD: Enough already
Cleaning out the clip file while wondering whether Green-Rainbow candidate Grace Ross will accuse us of contributing to the fast-vanishing tree supply in Massachusetts:

Copping a plea
Could someone please get a temporary restraining order against Kerry Healey’s Deval-Patrick-loves-cop-killers TV spot? The commercial — which the average Bostonian has seen roughly 748 times in the past two weeks — details Patrick’s 1980s defense work for Carl Ray Songer (why do these guys always have three names?), who faced the death penalty after killing a Florida state trooper. The spot ends with the question, “While lawyers have a right to defend admitted cop killers, do we really want one as our governor?”

Here’s a better question: while political candidates have the right to carpet-bomb us with hyperventilating half-baked scare tactics, do we really want one as our governor?

And you, Mr. Patrick: wipe that smile off your face. If you don’t stop acting like the Human Fog Machine, you’re going to deserve every distortion you get.

LaGuer est finicky
The other jackpot Patrick finds himself in is the strange and endless case of convicted rapist Benjamin LaGuer, who’s roped numerous local luminaries into supporting his bid for freedom. Patrick wrote letters to the state Parole Board in 1998 and 2000 urging LaGuer’s release and ponied up $5000 in 2001 to pay for DNA tests that actually backfired on LaGuer, who had claimed they would clear him.

Just like the Songer issue, l’affaire LaGuer came back to haunt Patrick. Healey, of course, has jumped on it, and victims’ rights advocates have whacked Patrick for “at every opportunity [taking] the side of the violent offender over the victim.”

Enter LaGuer himself, who only made matters worse by saying he’s not upset that Patrick has moon walked away from him. “In no way do I feel that Deval has betrayed me,” LaGuer told the Boston Globe. (Helpful hint for Deval: when you’re running for governor, try to avoid being on a first-name basis with anyone convicted of rape.)

Then came the finicky part. “I’ve been thrust into a forum which was not unwelcome,” LaGuer said. “I’ve wanted scrutiny of the facts of my case. I’ve not wanted a political fight.”

Yeah, don’t you hate when that happens? Question for Patrick: with friends like Benjy, who needs Kerry Healey?

Cardinal Lawmaker?
Down on Capitol Hill, beleaguered House Speaker Dennis Hastert now finds himself yoked not only to e-mauler Mark Foley (R-Drop Your Shorts), but also to Cardinal Bernard Law, late of St. Enabler’s parish in the archdiocese of Boston.

Following the Phoenix’s lead in which Brendan Lynch compiled a side-by-side comparison of remarks by Hastert and remarks by Law, the Wall Street Journal ran a front-page piece headlined HASTERT FACES INTENSE PRESSURE AS FOLEY MESS ROILS REPUBLICANS, which said, “associates worry the press-shy speaker will be typecast as a Washington version of Cardinal Bernard Law, who was faulted for not doing more to address child abuse by priests in the Boston Archdiocese.”

Then last Sunday’s Boston Herald ran a “Separated At Birth?” item with photos of Hastert and Law. And the icing on the cake: a Mike Peters editorial cartoon from the Dayton Daily News, which shows Hastert in ecclesiastical garb saying to a priest, “We should’ve just moved Foley to another parish.”
Do we see a pattern emerging here?

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  Topics: News Features , Mark Foley, Roman Catholicism, Dennis Hastert,  More more >
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