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February 5, 2010     Post-Gazette
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February 5, 2010
 

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Ihh,h,h,,,Ih,ll,,ih,,,,ll,,I,IIl,,,I,,I,,,I,i,ll,,,I,,li ......................... -;dBD ADC 010 ,f4- P3 PAUL JEFFKO SMALL TOV PAPERS. 502S  AVE- SW F.ATTLE WA 98136-I T THE ITAL-AMEIUCAN VOICE OF MASSACHUSETTS E (Formerly LA GAZZETTA del MASSACHUSETTS) VOL. 114 - NO. 6 BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS, FEBRUARY 5, 2010 $.30 A COPY None of this is Bush's Fault by Dan Calabrese Let's explode one of President Obama's most egregious bits of nonsense concerning his profligate spending -- the whole I-in- herited-this-mess business. This is better known as the Blame Bush Defense. As Obama so helpfully explains, the day he walked into the Oval Office he was facing $i trillion deficits as far as the eye could see, and there was nothing he could do about it. It was all George W. Bush's fault. You must spend ... you're getting very sleepy ... Balderdash. It is true that Bush did not restrain the out-of-control spending of the Republican Congress during his years in office, as he should have. And it's true that the deficit when Obama took office ex- ceeded $1 trillion. But that was true one time only, because of what was supposed to be a one-time emergency provision - a pro- vision Obama voted for as a senator. ' It was not a long- term trend, until Obama made it one. Bush did not inherit a surplus from Bill Clinton, as Democrats like to say, but the deficit during Bush's first year in office was only $144.5 billion. After 9/11, the start of the Iraq War and the continued upward trajec- tory of legally mandated entitlement spending -- along with the many ear- marks and domestic pro- gram increases so loved by the GOP Congress, the defi- cit ballooned over the next several years, topping out at a record $605 billion, or 5.3 percent of GDP, in 2004. But as economic growth set in, largely as a result of the Bush tax cuts, the deficit began to decline, fall- ing to only $459 billion, or 3.4 percent of GDP, in 2007. The deficit was on a sim- ilar downward trajectory in 2008 when the mortgage market melted down in Sep- tember, leading to the mas- sieve bailout spending that exploded the deficit to just over $1 trillion. Yes, that was the deficit (Continued on Page 15) Mayor Menino Brings Anti-drug Campaign to Eastie Mayor Tom Menino stung by the arrest of his former East Boston liaison on drug charges launched an anti-drug campaign in the neigh- borhood. The mayor said that on January 30, dozens of volunteers and city workers went door to door in East Boston to let residents know what treatment services are available to resi- dents and survey the neighborhood's reaction to the community's longtime struggle with drugs. The city will hold a Neighborhood Substance Abuse Summit in East Boston on February 13. It will also use a $5,000 grant to run workshops for teens with drug problems at two East Boston drug treatment centers and begin educational programs for area residents. Kudos to the Menino Administration for doing this. Ylaherty Trying Again for State Senate Cambridge lawyer Tim Flaherty who placed third in the 2007 Senate race that Anthony Galicia won has announced he plans to seek the Senate seat in a special election the Sen- ate is expected to announce. Flaherty is a former assistant district attorney and son of (Continued on Page 15) East Boston Historical Society Launch Students from the Umana Middle School Academy who created the "East Boston Historical Society" launched their first exhibit of student history projects and community treasures on January 29, 2010 at the Cultural Exchange Center, 80 Border Street, East Boston. Shown is a photo of the Kennedy family. The students have been exploring the Kennedy roots in East Boston among other historical facts. (Continued on page 8) Mayor's Column by Thomas M. Menino, Mayor, City of Boston As the economy continues to struggle it is important that we find ways to help working families maximize on every opportunity to save money. This week, on National Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) Day, I kicked off Boston's ninth annual EITC Campaign by announcing the opening of 28 free tax prep centers across the city to assist residents in filing their taxes and claiming the credit. The Boston EITC Coalition an- ticipates an even higher turnout this year, with two additional sites, the campaign's largest-ever volunteer corps, and a host of new resources available for residents. However, awareness of the credit is crucial as millions of dol- lars go unclaimed each year which could otherwise be in the pockets of those who need it the most. This is a campaign for working people and we want to make sure they bring home the money they earned. The EITC credit makes it possible to pay bills, make purchases and even save, all of which strengthen our City's economic health. The credit is only available by filing taxes and our free tax prep centers make the process easy and accessible. Eligible residents who worked in 2010 can qualify for up to $5,657, depending on income and family size. The income threshold this year is set at approxi- mately $49,000. For instance, you may be eligible if you are married and have two or more children and earn less than $45,295. If you are single and have two or more children, you need to have earned less than $40,295. To find out if you qualify for the tax credit, call (617) 918-5275 or visit www.bostontaxhelp.org. Last year's campaign transformed thousands of lives and cemented Bos- ton as a national leader in promoting the credit, which is a sum above and beyond the normal tax refund. Nearly 12,000 Boston taxpayers used the cam- paign to file their taxes and received $19.4 million total, saving an additional $1.6 million in estimated tax prep fees. In conjunction with free tax preparation services, last year 1,500 individuals re- ceived credit counseling helping them stabilize their household budgets. Saving money in these hard economic times is crucial and as you can see it's not that hard to do because we have come together as a community to pro- (Continued on Page 13) ] THE POST-GAZETtE SATELLITE OFFICE IS NOW OPEN AT 35 BENNINGTON STREET, EAST BOSTON This office is open on Mondays and Tuesdays from 10:(X) AM to 3.'00 PM and Thursdays from II.'(X) AM to 2.00 PM, for the convenience of our East Boston and North Shore clients and contributors Call 617-227-8929 for more information