Ted Frier

Ted Frier
April 02
Ted Frier is an author and former political reporter turned speechwriter who at one time served as communications director for the Massachusetts Republican Party, helping Bill Weld become the first Bay State Republican in a generation to be elected Governor. He was Chief Speechwriter for Republican Governor Paul Cellucci and Lt. Governor Jane Swift. Ted is also the author of the hardly-read 1992 history "Time for a Change: The Return of the Republican Party in Massachusetts." So, why the current hostility to the Republican Party and what passes for conservatism today? The Republican Party was once a national governing party that looked out for the interests of the nation as a whole. Now it is the wholly-owned subsidiary of self interest. Conservatism once sought national unity to promote social peace and harmony. Now conservatism has devolved into a right wing mutation that uses divide and conquer tactics to promote the solidarity of certain social sub-groups united against the larger society while preserving the privileges of a few.

Ted Frier's Links


New York Times columnist Paul Krugman turns out to be an amateur piker when it comes to ad hominem partisan name-calling. So Nick Gillespie, editor of the libertarian journal Reason, shows Krugman how it is done in a 1,000-word temper tantrum in today's Daily Beast that is certain to become a… Read full post »

JULY 16, 2013 9:29AM

Fear Now A License To Kill

Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, or so say conservatives who use the absolute sovereignty of outlook to justify a belief in such perverse ideas as global warming is a hoax, that Saddam Hussein really did have weapons of mass destruction and that President Obama is a foreign b… Read full post »

JULY 12, 2013 9:23AM

Defending the One Percent

It seems puzzling that Harvard University would grant tenure, let alone appoint someone to be the chairman of its economics department, who fundamentally doesn't believe in economics. But there it is, all spelled out in a much talked about new paper, "Defending the One Percent," by Harvard economics… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
JULY 4, 2013 8:51AM

Rick Perry: Job Poacher

Poaching on the labor of others is an ancient and honored Southern tradition, whose antebellum antecedents Texas Governor Rick Perry has recently brought up-to-date with a $1 million advertising campaign to encourage businesses to pack up and come on down to the Lone Star State where the… Read full post »

 (Note: Today marks the 150th anniversary of Day 2 of the climatic Battle of Gettysburg, fought July 1-3, 1863.  Fighting on Day 2 was concentrated along the Union left flank and featured such famous locations as Devil's Den, the Peach Orchard, The Wheatfield and LiRead full post »

JUNE 28, 2013 10:13AM

American Economy Going South

Mississippi is the poorest state in the nation. The gap between rich and poor has been the fastest growing over the past generation of any other in the Union. One in five non-elderly Mississippi residents lacks health insurance.

The state's governor and its bosses in the Republican-controlled state… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
JUNE 19, 2013 1:49PM

GOP Still Liz Cheney's Party

There is no future in the Republican Party for self-reflection.

Consider the case of Louisiana Republican Governor Bobby Jindal.  As the New Republic’s Alec MacGillis reports, barely had the last executive jet departed Boston’s Logan Airport with its cargo of crestfallen Mitt Romney… Read full post »

JUNE 19, 2013 1:15PM

GOP Still Liz Cheney's Party

There is no future in the Republican Party for self-reflection.

Consider the case of Louisiana Republican Governor Bobby Jindal.  As the New Republic’s Alec MacGillis reports, barely had the last executive jet departed Boston’s Logan Airport with its cargo of crestfallen Mitt Romney…

Read full post »

When was the last time you saw a Republican in these fractious, bitterly polarized times hold up a T-shirt that read: "Some of our best friends are Democrats!"

You would have if you were present in the House Chamber on Thursday as former Governor Bill Weld joined… Read full post »

JUNE 14, 2013 6:41AM

Democrats Bring Knife to Gunfight

You'd think that as an airport guy I'd be thrilled Congress and the President moved at the speed of light in this era of polarization and obstruction to keep airplanes flying without lengthy delays when air traffic controllers got exempted from the ill-effects of the federal sequester's… Read full post »

Okay, I admit it. I am obsessed with the Republican Party and its transformation into a vessel for a right wing movement that, by my reading of history, rejects democracy in favor of some form of authoritarian "freedom" that represents the worldview of reactionary conservatives, and only… Read full post »

JUNE 5, 2013 12:31PM

Welfare "Corrupt?"

Jeff Jacoby's most recent rant against government lifting a hand to help the poor is bad on so many levels.

"Is welfare corrupt?" the conservative columnist asks in last Sunday's  Boston Globe. "Of course it is."

Jacoby's hook for this sweeping indictment is a recent report from the Massachuse… Read full post »

There is a flip side to the "culture of intimidation" Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell accuses President Obama of creating when, as McConnell baselessly alleges, federal agencies controlled by Obama single out for "targeting" right wing groups like the Tea Party for inordinate scrutiny an… Read full post »

The GOP is a "party of crybabies." Or so says Jonathan Bernstein in yesterday's Salon, reprieving one of my biggest pet peeves, which is the presumption by conservatives that freedom of speech entails freedom from criticism for one's opinions - no matter how absurd or obscene those opinions… Read full post »

MAY 22, 2013 7:14PM

Worst Since Watergate? Please

Why do so many still take Peggy Noonan seriously when she may have penned the single most self-immolating line ever uttered by a national leader in a major political address: "Read my lips, no new taxes."

Noonan's penchant for the sweepingly grand, if melodramatically vacuous, remark is… Read full post »

Someone once said that the real scandals are not the way some politicians break the law but the way most politicians make the laws.

And in the manufactured outrage over the extra scrutiny the IRS gave to Tea Party and other "patriot" groups seeking tax exempt status… Read full post »

MAY 12, 2013 11:55AM

The Center Cannot Hold

Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.

         -- William Butler… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
MAY 1, 2013 9:46AM

Sandra Day O'Connor's Mea Culpa

Maybe Congress should enact a new Judiciary Act and create a Supreme Court of Appeals Emeritus composed of ex-Supreme Court justices whose only qualification would be that they deeply regret some past decision and wish to correct the record and make amends before they die.

First up on the docket… Read full post »

APRIL 28, 2013 10:29AM

The US-Israeli "Special Relationship"

The United States and Israel have a "special relationship."

Before there was Governor Rick Scott's defiance of the US Justice Department's order to stop purging Hispanics and other dark-skinned Democrats from the Florida voter rolls, there was Avigdor Lieberman, foreign minister in Israeli leader… Read full post »

APRIL 26, 2013 6:43AM

Two Cheers for the Nanny State

Anyone with teenagers will tell you: Paternalism gets a bum rap.

If parents had their way, these boiling, bundles of raging hormones would be locked away in some dark place only to emerge years later, cicada-like, as fully-formed human beings.

But that is not going to happen anytime soon… Read full post »

APRIL 18, 2013 6:15AM

Don't Mess With Boston

The phone rang a little before 3:00. "Are you watching the news?" my mother-in-law asked frantically. I wasn't. "Then turn on the TV. Two bombs just went off near the finish line at the Marathon."

There was good reason for her urgent tone. Though my wife was away on a… Read full post »

APRIL 11, 2013 6:09AM

Sequester Begins to Bite

This month I met the federal budget sequester up close and personal.  

On April 3, I was on hand alongside hundreds of others at Worcester Regional Airport as JetBlue President David Barger touched down in the newest JetBlue plane in his fleet, an Airbus 320 nicknamed… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
APRIL 5, 2013 9:19AM

Hope For "Catholic Spring" Eternal

In all my years of church-going, I do not ever recall hearing what I heard at Easter Mass last Sunday: a congregation putting its hands together, not in prayer, but to applaud a priest for his sermon.

The surprise ovation may have been due to the homily's decidedly political message, delivered… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
MARCH 26, 2013 10:55AM

The Clash of Civilizations Over Marriage Equality

As an all-Catholic, conservative Supreme Court majority prepares to hear arguments on a topic its church has declared to be a sin, a recent debate between Daily Beast columnist Andrew Sullivan (who is gay) and a Christian fundamentalist over the question of whether civil marriage… Read full post »

MARCH 21, 2013 9:37AM

Greed Not So Good

Ever since he first proposed it in the same year Thomas Jefferson declared all men to be created equal, people have been delighted and beguiled by the hidden workings of Adam Smith's famous "invisible hand."

For a millennia or more, humans who marveled at the orderly movements of the heavens… Read full post »