Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Selectman Weiss speaks

Mr. Weiss's Chariot.

So Boston radio personality Michael Graham wanted to hear Mr. Weiss out on this proposal to allow (2) "cleared" Gitmo detainees to resettle here. Happy to oblige him.

The warrant article (#14) Town Meeting will vote on does not contain any names whatsoever and clearly uses the word "cleared" four times.

So again, just for record. If there is any chance in Hell the two individuals have any connection to terrorist activities I will of course vote No on the floor of Town Meeting. But this naming of the two is kind of a new wrinkle and I'm now told that the two in particular may have some connection to bad things. Makes me wonder about the definition of "cleared."

Amherst Town Meeting: I gave it my best shot

Mr. Graham's blog post about the People's Republic


Yes, the petitioner and Mr. Weiss show up in the Hall of Shame

Really Dumb Foreign policy from the People's Republic

video

24 comments:

Anonymous said...

Wow, I find myself caught between two things I really dislike about town politics:

1) The tendency toward grand displays of compassion using town microphones that essentially say "look at me", and

2) The opposing and increasingly popular temptation to respond to these articles with a bureaucratic, almost Dickensian tone of dismissal : "this is no place for this".

The happy medium, in my judgement, involves a 30-45 minute presentation to Town Meeting and then a quick up or down voice vote, and move on.

Rich Morse

LarryK4 said...

Agreed.

I still remember the Special Town Meeting back in 1990 with only one article calling for "continued negotiations" with Saddam Hussein that passed unanimously; but folks were pissed that somebody called the question after only a half hour or 45 minutes because they wanted to talk all night long...

Anonymous said...

What slippery slope?

It's none of your business, move on...

Anonymous said...

See gavinthink.blogspot.com for a slightly different approach to the warrant article.

The problem with both the Weiss and O'Keeffe arguments is that they are both open-ended. Gerry uses the phrase "slippery slope" to characterize the situation posed by his presumed opponents. But his vague, open-ended rationale (thanks for the video, Larry) in turn presents us with a slippery slope as tall as Everest: in which we are justified in confronting all the world's ills and injustices in Town Meeting? We obviously can't do that, and Stephanie's SB vote in opposition attempts to respond to that clear logistical problem.

So Stephanie has "sorted the mail" here and stuck this warrant article in her personal "Not Town Business" compartment. She seems to have done that fairly mechanically, but that too is simplistic. And her argument that this matter is not within the "expertise" of Town Meeting opens up an enormous can of worms. (You mean as opposed to zoning articles?)

Some modest concession has to be made to the nature of the community in which you find yourself. No one person gets to maintain a stranglehold on the agenda in town. This is not Podunk: Amherst citizens have social justice concerns beyond the simple nitty-gritty of municipal governance, whether or not we have a looming 4 million dollar deficit. Ms. O'Keeffe wants us to be focused like a laser beam on that latter mess, but we're going to be living with it for awhile to come. Meanwhile, life goes on and residents feel the need to address other concerns.

So I find both arguments to be simplistic and overreaching in confronting this problem: when do human realities beyond the borders of the Town come within the proper jurisdiction and consideration of elected leaders here, recognizing that we can't do everything AND we want Town Meeting to be an office that folks with other demands on their time can handle?

Stephanie seems to be saying: never.

Gerry seems to be saying: always.

There has to be a mediating principle between these two positions. Without being able to articulate that principle, I sense that at least the welcoming clause of the proposed resolution treads on that narrower ground.

Rich Morse

Anonymous said...

"and I'm now told that the two in particular may have some connection to bad things. Makes me wonder about the definition of "cleared.""


Oh, so now you fu cking ask. You're such a retard Larry.


Fu ck Amherst. What a dump.

LarryK4 said...

Good a time as any you Nitwit. The warrant article will not be acted/voted upon for another month.

You don't like Amherst, leave; or do what I do and try to change it.

Anonymous said...

Are there actually 2 men identified or is this just a hypothetical 2 men. Like anyone would want to relocate here...

Maybe Weiss and Stein could each give up a room in their home for them. Now that would be doing all you could do.

LarryK4 said...

The actual Warrant article does not mention anyone by name, or even a number. Does use the word "cleared" four times.

Anonymous said...

Good Ole' Amherst, Open Arms for Gitmo "terrorists" to get a home and a job plus help off tax payers backs, yet they condemn a dog to death because of natural instincts and human errors! SO PROUD TO LIVE HERE IN THIS SHIT HOLE

Anonymous said...

"SO PROUD TO LIVE HERE IN THIS SHIT HOLE"


Joke of the fu cking nation right now...

Has been for years.

Jimmy D said...

The names were on the radio. One was a Russian name. Can't remember the other but it wasn't and Iragi, Irani, or Afgan.

Anonymous said...

I'm not in favor of our town reps taking the time and effort to opinionate on national and foreign policy--in the name of the TOWN OF AMHERST. What you do on your own is fine, of course.

When I vote for town reps and for select board I do NOT have enough information to determine which person REPRESENTS me in a national nor foreign policy manner, including you, Larry.

In fact since our elections are for TOWN representation, then I find that having our town reps take it upon themselves to determine what Amherst wants nationally and internationally is far beyond what the citizenry charged our elected representatives to do.

And I am absolutely appalled that town meeting members and SB have the gall to do so.

We want you to make decisions that affect the town government. You know, finances, zoning, schools etc. We don't want you to represent up politically. We elect state and fed reps to do that job.

Now I know it could be argued that it is a town decision to open up to the detainees and welcome some to live here. But one knows it is more than that...political gesture, grandstanding and destined to make us a "NATIONAL" presence and represent our superior social conscience etc. I just don't think that is or should be the town meeting's role.


-Elaine

LarryK4 said...

Yeah, that's why I love the blog. I can expound on anything I damn well please (although I try to keep it local.)

And as you know, I'm not a big fan of town meeting in general.

Anonymous said...

"-Elaine"


Said it fu cking all.

What is wrong with this god damn screwed up town?!

Anonymous said...

OK, I have a question.
Once these guys, or anyone else from Gitmo, get cleared do they really need a towns permission or blessing or whatever to live there? If they are truely freed to live in the US is this grandstanding needed? It just seems like a big pat me on the back move from Weiss.

LarryK4 said...

True enough. Ms Hooke did say at one point that Town Meeting approval was not necessary and that they were doing this to drum up PR.

Old Chinese proverb: "Be careful what you wish for."

Anonymous said...

It appears that Ms. O'Keeffe and others have been successful in lumping this article in with other past articles in which Amherst gave advice on policy.

I leave it to others to decide whether that's a distortion or not.

Rich Morse

LarryK4 said...

Now you know why I mention her background as a PR flak.

Ry Willey said...

Exactly how many of the people I know feel, including myself. Thanks for stating it clearly.

-Ryan

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm not in favor of our town reps taking the time and effort to opinionate on national and foreign policy--in the name of the TOWN OF AMHERST. What you do on your own is fine, of course.

When I vote for town reps and for select board I do NOT have enough information to determine which person REPRESENTS me in a national nor foreign policy manner, including you, Larry.

Anonymous said...

I do agree that compleatly cleared people should be allowed to live where they wish...BUT...If the town's "permission" is not needed then this is something they should be doing on their own time.
We have so many local issues to deal with at town meeting already. Nobody should be allowed to use that time to further their own cause, whatever it may be. Can you imagine what it could lead to?

Anonymous said...

Bottom line....there are MAJOR budget and school and service cut issues that are WAY more important than this for our Select Board to be worrying about! When can this town finally get its' priorities straight? Whenever this town acts on issues such as this to make itself appear all good and fuzzy and p.c. ... what it really does is make the town of Amherst a nationally known embarassment!

Anonymous said...

"A nationally known embarrassment"??

Amherst is?

Compared with what? Springfield? Holyoke? Detroit? Or How about any big city in Connecticut, like Waterbury and Hartford, where their mayors regularly go off to jail?
Or how about this nation's infant mortality rate compared to that of other countries?

If you're embarrassed by Amherst, then yours is a very restricted world. You need to get out more.

Anonymous said...

You really should re-read that post...obviously you are too immature or single-minded to understand the true meaning of that post...Amherst is indeed an embarassment when it comes to certain political issues. Especially when other issues such as taxes and schools and deficits are way more pressing and fundamental to ALL Amherst residents.

Anonymous said...

"If you're embarrassed by Amherst, then yours is a very restricted world. You need to get out more."


People like YOU are the problem.

Understand?