New England

It really wasn’t my intention to Mass-bash today — God knows the great respect I have for the venerable old commonwealth — but sometimes they just make it too easy for me to resist. Such is the case when a story involves two of my great passions: Great White Sharks and hapless libs.

The Cape Cod Times (August 10, 2007) informs us that:

[…] Chatham [Mass] harbor master Stuart Smith said that while his office has fielded plenty of reports over the last two or three years about Great White sightings, there has been no photo or video documentation.

Well, ok, but what about the 15 foot, one ton Great White shark that Massachusetts officials actually TAGGED in Cape Cod three years ago?

Does that count?


Would you still be empowered to make your own health care choices?

James L. Payne turns the Lib abortion mantra back on them in his essay My Body, My Choice taking on Massachusetts’ mandatory health insurance law. (As of July 1, residents of Massachusetts are required by law to purchase health insurance)

Looks like reproductive health (sic) is the only domain where choice applies in the Bay State.

When serial killer Michael Ross was put to death in May of 2005, Connecticut became the first New England state to carry out a death sentence in more than forty years.

At the time, the spectacle of a tiny, deep blue state dispatching a convicted murderer via lethal injection gave rise to the usual hand-wringing and no small amount of curiosity. I mean, let’s face it, Connecticut ain’t exactly Alabama.


(Credit: Bob Englehart - Hartford Courant)

The Christian Science Monitor took up the baton and ran with it:

New England’s resistance to the death penalty stems in part from having the country’s lowest murder rate, says Richard Dieter, the executive director of the Death Penalty Information Center. Experts also cite its liberalism overall and the impact of its renowned universities.

Yet some in Connecticut worry that with this execution, that distinction would no longer hold as firmly. “It can no longer call itself an enlightened state,” says Paula Montonye, a lawyer who represents some of the state’s death row inmates. The execution “is a stamp of approval on killing. It creates an atmosphere of death. And life begets life; death begets death.”

Enlightened or not, it looks like two prime candidates for Connecticut’s next rendezvous with the gallows have emerged in the upscale town of Cheshire. Here’s CNN:

Prosecutors in Connecticut say they will seek the death penalty for two men charged with killing three members of a prominent Cheshire, Connecticut, doctor’s family during a gruesome home invasion.

New Haven State’s Attorney Michael Dearington announced additional charges against Steven Hayes, 44, and Joshua Komisarjevsky, 26, on Thursday.

The charged include murder — called capitol felony in Connecticut — which carries a sentence of either life without parole or execution by injection.

The suspects were initially charged with aggravated sexual assault, burglary and arson.

Hayes and Komisarjevsky are accused of killing Jennifer Hawke-Petit, 48, and her daughters Hayley, 17, and Michaela, 11.

Hawke-Petit’s husband, Dr. William Petit Jr., was assaulted and thrown into the basement of the home during the attack.

After “invading the home”, at 3:00 AM Monday morning, Hayes and Komisarjevsky beat the father and threw him in the basement, raped the women, robbed them, and then burned the house to the ground – murdering everyone but the father.

I’m against the death penalty. I arrived at my opposition intellectually – and over a long period of time – not as a result of inherent revulsion, religious conviction, liberal politics or anything of that sort.

But when I read a story like the one above, I realize that my conversion is nowhere near complete and that I’m in serious danger of backsliding. When two career criminals (with more than twenty convictions on their rap sheets) commit the Devil’s Trifecta of murder, rape, and armed robbery I could not — would not — look a good ol’boy from Missouri in the face and make a cogent argument about why their lives should be spared.

I hope that someone with a longer — and more committed — history of opposition to the death penalty will enlighten me.

In the meantime there’s a part of me (a very big part of me, indeed) that hopes that Dr. Petit buys a gun and takes care of business himself.

More of that quirky New Hampshire behavior that just makes us love them so much:

MERRIMACK, N.H. —Town leaders are asking residents to pay their tolls one penny at a time.

Officials want residents to pay tolls on the F.E. Everett Turnpike in pennies one day next month to protest the failure of a toll-relief plan.

The Town Council voted unanimously this week for a “Toll Revolt Day” on Aug. 27.

Chairman Dave McCray says residents’ burden of paying tolls to get around town is being ignored by lawmakers. The protest will call attention to the situation, he said.

McCray says lawmakers from other towns are “useless blowhards,” who could “count the pennies in their spare time, because Lord knows they have enough of it.”


“You people in Concord,” McCray said. “You son of a gun. I am going to Sovereign Bank to get myself a roll of pennies.”

Northern New Englanders have a certain charm, don’t they? I mean this isn’t a citizens’ group organizing a toll revolt, it’s the freakin’ Town Council organizing a toll revolt! Anyway, as revolution brews in New Hampshire, prepare for the earth to be knocked off her axis by the sheer force of the brays from the Western media over this little bit of news:

Australian citizenship test will include Christian heritage


In speaking in Parliament about the new law in May, the Minister for Immigration, Kevin Andrews, noted: “British settlers of Australia brought with them the Anglo-Celtic principles and traditions of Christianity, the scientific revolution and the Enlightenment.”

Very soon it will be un-PC to hold conventions, spend your vacation, or even change planes in Australia. Kangaroos will be burned in effigy in the streets of Berkeley; Harvard will divest of its Aussie securities; and Dennis Kucinich will pledge to break diplomatic relations with Canberra upon taking the oath of office.

And, no doubt, Christiane Amanpour will host a CNN Special with footage of small Muslim and Hindu children who have become alienated, self-loathing, and drug dependent as a result of the Christofascist extremists in the Howard government with their insensitive, not-sufficiently-diverse law mongering.

The outrage!