Sunday, March 01, 2009

Boston Globe *Really* Wants A Mayoral Race

Unfortunately, Mayor Tom Menino, the Boston Globe just doesn't like you. And at the start of an election season, that's not fair.

The Boston Globe is begging for a Mayoral race. On Thursday of this week, columnist Joan Vennochi could not have begged more directly.
After 16 years, Menino is part of the establishment. He's comfortable, maybe too comfortable for voters whose lives are growing less comfortable in today's economic environment...Boston is ripe for...political change. The only question is whether there's a mayoral challenger strong enough to rally around.
In my years of watching politics, I have never seen anything like it. Last year, the Globe reported survey results showing the Mayor's approval rating in the city holding steady at 72 percent (granted, the data is old, but it is the most current). Yet a Globe columnist says it's time for change. The same survey notes that 54-percent of residents have met the Mayor. Yet a Globe columnist says he is out of touch.

Vennochi's tone is in direct conflict with what I witnessed last Sunday, when the Mayor greeted a group of younger adult residents in West Roxbury. He didn't seem to me to be detached from the uncomfortable economic realities faced by residents. He didn't seem to me to be a Mayor who has lost a step or is complacent. He seemed determined to meet residents in Boston that are new to him.

It's something related to the Boston Globe that I have noticed for years, magnified this year by the slippery slope of political change. I voted for President Barack Obama, and he was elected because change was needed in Washington. Whether change is needed in Government Center here in Boston is another question altogether.

It appears that the Globe, like Mayor Menino's challengers, hopes that this city will be swept away by the wave of change, regardless of whether it is needed it or not--and most alarmingly, without discussing the challenges we face and the ideas we all have to overcome them.

NOTE: Excerpt taken from: "The bloom is off Menino's rosy image," by Joan Vennochi; Boston Globe, February 26, 2009.

No comments: