A Ballot Committee of
Citizens for Limited Taxation & Government
PO Box 408 * Peabody, MA 01960
Phone:(617) 248-0022 * E-Mail:
Visit our web-page at:
*** Promise Update ***
Saturday, April 11, 1998

Greetings friends and activists;

Sitting here watching another dawn breaking, it suddenly struck me that some good has come from the teachers union challenge and the heavy workload, the 100-hour work weeks, and the non-stop demands on us since last Labor Day weekend, when we launched our petition drive.

First, I must say the I *hate* winter. I hate winter with such passion that I escaped if for five years in the late ‘70s and early ‘80s in the tropical Florida Keys, living aboard antique boats we’d be restoring (had they not been so old and in need of such major reconstruction, they’d have been called yachts!), surrounded by palm trees, pelicans, and stilt-legged herons. My entire wardrobe back then consisted of a collection of t-shirts (of which the artwork on many I’d designed), a few pairs of shorts, and deckshoes.

I had a small sign-painting business down there and a year-round tan you wouldn’t believe. I really loved the climate and the simple lifestyle. I called it "my early retirement" and learned that nobody had to endure winter! All my friends from up here made it a point to come down and find me when they’d had enough of winter, got into "snowbird" mode, and needed a place to stay, so aboard we always had a full house from January through March and some really fun annual reunions! They always left envious that I didn’t have to leave with them.

It took our 60’ Alden schooner being stolen to force me back up here, where I dedicated the next three years to chasing down the thief and, with great satisfaction, finally saw him jailed in Michigan. And then came along the first mandatory seat belt law, I got my feet wet in my first involvement ever in politics, and as they say, "the rest is history" and here I am, still.

My "retirement" has passed, as I knew down there on that gently rolling deck under the tropical sun that it one day would. I still I hate winter, but have learned again to grit my teeth and endure it year after year, day by excruciating day, because now I have "a mission" and it requires me to be here.

This year was different. I didn’t have the time to notice what day of the week it was, never mind what season. I almost never had the time to go out into winter—and I just realized that it’s spring already!!!

Anything that helps make winter pass with so little if any notice can’t be all bad!

But on with the news:

Yesterday Barbara went on the air with WRKO’s Howie Carr (AM-680) where she was given the opportunity to expose the teachers union’s unscrupulous tactics. Though Howie’s program has drifted away from real political issues, as has most of Boston’s talk-radio, his phone lines immediately lit up with callers who’d been subpoenaed or knew someone who had.

She’ll be on with Moe Lauzier (WRKO) this morning after the 8:00 news to again expose the teachers union’s slimy tactics, and we expect her to also make an appearance either this afternoon or tomorrow with Jerry Willams (I’ve got to call him later this morning).

I may soon have news that I can release about our legal response to the MTA’s reprehensible and probably illegal tactics, but more on that later.

The following is from the State House News Service’s advances of this morning; an update on the ongoing assault on the petition process from many quarters.

Enjoy a great Easter Weekend, friends.

Chip Ford—

Advances - April 10, 1998
Week of April 13, 1998

BALLOT QUESTIONS......Could the sky collapse if the ballot initiative "freeing the Pike" passes? No, but the petition’s passage might be like tossing a very large rock into the delicately linked ‘Pike and Central Artery/Tunnel finances, Boston’s business leaders warned last Thursday. In an effort to block the initiative from the November ballot, the Artery Business Committee challenged the petition’s legality before the Supreme Judicial Court last Friday. But while the ABC says abolishing tolls would break agreements between the ‘Pike and bondholders, Free the Pike’s campaign manager says the state has enough money to remove the "hidden tax." SJC Chief Justice Herbert Wilkins has recused himself from the case, as his son, Assistant Attorney General Douglas Wilkins, is defending the state. In other petition news, the Campaign for Fair Electric Rates is also finding out that getting on the ballot takes more than a successful signature drive. After spending last week defending their case before the state Ballot Law Commission, supporters of the electric deregulation repeal campaign are expected to give closing arguments this week, possibly on Tuesday. And Barbara Anderson’s tax-cut petition is still grinding through the court process, with testimony from a handwriting expert expected Tuesday at 9 am in the Middlesex Courthouse. Anderson said her opponents - the Mass. Teachers Association - have subpoenaed 300 petition signers to testify this week.

"The only alternative to limited taxation and government is unlimited taxation and government."

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
You can e-mail A Promise to Keep: 5% at -->
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *