Welcome to Perspectives, a blog of thoughts, commentary and observations ranging from autistic adolescents to intimate portraits of urban communities.



“The idea of hereditary legislators is as inconsistent as that of hereditary judges, or hereditary juries; and as absurd as an hereditary mathematician, or an hereditary wise man; and as ridiculous as an hereditary poet-laureate.” Thomas Paine, The Rights of Man As disheartening as an hereditary president.

Hillary Clinton declared her candidacy five days ago, 19 months before the polls open. She has been on the front page of the New York Times ever since – even though she faces no opposition and her campaign to date has consisted of driving to Iowa, having coffee with people, and going unrecognized in a Chipotle restaurant. For this she garnered such headlines as: “The Hillary Clinton Reboot: Both Off the Cuff and Meticulously Planned;” “Another Clinton Now Vows to Fix Political Finance System;” “For a Clinton, It’s Not Hard to Be Humble in an Effort to Regain Power.” Nineteen months of this?

Meanwhile, Jeb Bush, who hasn’t even announced yet, is roaming the country picking off big donors so effectively that he quickly pushed Mitt Romney from the race.

Publicly, Jeb and Hillary are distancing themselves from heredity and inevitability, and they do have impressive resumes. But in an election projected to cost $5 billion, it’s what happens in private that counts. These are the safe candidates behind those doors, the representatives of the old order, security blankets for the establishment. Look around, they say, you could do worse. We certainly could. The question is, can we do better?

Patriots' Day

Off the Books