A photo for Easter from Tony Sampas
A photo for Easter from Tony Sampas
John Prendergast meeting in South Sudan during the Southern Sudanese independence referendum, 2011 with President Jimmy Carter, 7th Secretary-General of the United Nations Kofi Annan and George Clooney (web photo courtesy of wikipedia.com)
John Prendergast of the Enough Project is the 2012 UMass Lowell Greeley Scholar for Peace Studies. He has two events open to the public next week during his second visit to the campus. Both events below are free and open to the public in accessible venues. Learn more about the Greeley Peace Scholar program here.
Pizza with Prendergast, Monday, April 9, 3-4 p.m., UMass Lowell Inn & Conference Center, 50 Warren St., Lowell, Mass. Lowell youth organization activists are invited to meet John Prendergast to talk about community organizing, global issues, and more over a slice of pizza and a soft drink.
Film Screening and Community Forum, Monday, April 9, 7-9 p.m. , UMass Lowell Inn & Conference Center, 50 Warren St., Lowell, Mass. John Prendergast will screen the film “Blood in the Mobile” and talk about his human rights work in Africa and other issues.
In this week’s Local History article on the Howl in Lowell website, I write about the Three-Fifths Compromise in the US Constitution, the section of that document that tacitly acknowledged the existence of slavery without ever mentioning that word. While standing firm in opposition to slavery in 1787 may have prevented the enactment of the Constitution, side-stepping the issue as the delegates did ensured the issue would have to be resolved in the future. It was, by the American Civil War.
On Sunday, April 15, 2012 at 2 p.m. at the Patrick J. Mogan Cultural Center at 40 French Street in Lowell, I will discuss this and the many conflicts over slavery that occurred in the country from colonial times until the start of the Civil War with emphasis on how these conflicts manifested themselves in the rapidly growing city of Lowell. This talk will be part of the opening of the new exhibit, “Lowell Remembers: The Civil War 1861-1865″ featuring the photography of Tony Sampas.
Here is another video excellent from the UMass Lowell Robotic’s Lab.
This video is an overview of the UMass Lowell Robotics Lab’s research, including our work with multi-touch devices for robot control, telepresence, combining art and robotics, and student projects from undergraduate and graduate students.
The entry beow is being cross posted from Marjorie Arons-Barron’s own blog.
Most attorneys general don’t go after political corruption because acting against colleagues can translate into a dead end politically. But Martha Coakley has a new Public Integrity Division, a welcome addition. And she has the new 2009 ethics law, which criminalizes behavior previously treated civilly. Still, there are questions about whether she is being too aggressive in going after former TreasurerTim Cahill, using a cannon to kill a flea.
At issue was his using three quarters of the Lottery Commission fy 2011 advertising budget to extol the virtues of that agency in the weeks before the 2010 election, Coakley was damned if she did, damned if she didn’t. If she took no action, she’d be accused of a cover-up. If she indicted him, she would be accused of excessive aggression and advancing her own political career. (Yesterday, to counter that, she made an early announcement that she’d be running for reelection, not for Governor.)
Previously what Cahill did would have come up before the state Ethics Commission, resulting only in a fine. Now, if he’s convicted, he could land behind bars.
Reporters and columnists are seeing old examples in a new light. Bill Galvin showing up in voter registration ads, Steve Grossman injected into abandoned property notices, Tom Menino’s name on Boston construction signs, Deval Patrick on highway projects. Will these have to go away as well? (Note: apparently Galvin’s ads don’t appear during an election season.) Certainly all politicians will have to be much more careful about how much they, using taxpayer dollars, inject themselves or take credit for their official accomplishments or projects.
Cahill may reasonably argue that his face and name were deliberately excluded from the Lottery commercials. He could also say that lottery ticket buyers could be turned off by disparaging ads run against the Lottery by the National Republican Governors Association during the gubernatorial campaign, when Cahill, running as an Independent, threatened to spoil things for Republican Charlie Baker.
Three Boston Globe writers have had totally different takes on the Cahill story, all three – Scot Lehigh, Brian McGrory and Joan Venocchi – worth reading.
For me, what legitimizes Coakley’s action is the trail of emails showing close collaboration between Cahill staff and his campaign consultants. Naïve? Stupid? Venal? Take your pick. Not to prosecute would give the green light to politicians of all stripes that the new ethics statute will be meaningless. Cahill may just be unlucky in being the first to be prosecuted under the new law. He should get more than a slap on the hand, more than a fine, but he is not Sal DiMasi, who got money in exchange for steering government contracts. Nor is Cahill Dianne Wilkerson, who stuffed money in her bra in exchange for regulatory consideration. Time in the slammer? House arrest? Probation? Community service? I’d like to hear from you.
I’d greatly appreciate your thoughts in the comments section below.