So the state Senate president, who hasn’t had a real job since Jimmy Carter was president, decides at the age of 67 to get married to a guy who’s 38 years younger than he is.
A guy who wears a bow tie, looks and dresses like Pee Wee Herman, has no real career and likes to drink.
What could possibly go wrong?
Everything, as it turns out. The perverama that has engulfed the nation in recent weeks now comes to Beacon Hill. Move over Harvey Weinstein, Matt Lauer, Al Franken and Kevin Spacey.
Meet Senate President Stan C. Rosenberg and his husband, Byron Hefner. This is the headline about the Dream Couple of Beacon Hill:
“Four men allege sexual misconduct by Senate president’s husband.”
The story is in the Globe, believe it or not. That’s how out of control it has apparently gotten at the State House. Not even the Globe, which comforts the comfortable and afflicts the afflicted, could put a shine on this PC sneaker.
This celebration of diversity hits on the same day as local prosecutors throw out 7,500 drug cases after a state chemist in Amherst spent almost a decade snorting and ingesting the evidence. It comes as the state police release communications showing that less than 40 minutes after a hack judge’s toll-taker junkie daughter was arrested for OUI on Interstate 190 in October, the brass were already scrambling to make sure that their fellow hack would not be embarrassed.
This is your state government at work.
A century ago, the president of the Massachusetts state Senate was Calvin Coolidge. He wrote what was then a famous tract, exhorting the Commonwealth to believe in itself:
“Have Faith in Massachusetts.”
Do you have faith in Massachusetts? Me neither.
This scandal is all on Rosenberg. He’s supposed to be the adult here, even though he was cowering behind closed doors in his Beacon Hill apartment, pouting and yelling to a Herald reporter how “disrespectful” it was to confront him before he’d had “any chance to process it.”
There have been problems in the past with Hefner — for a while he had a job of sorts with that local ethical titan George Regan. But lately Mr. President claimed he’d constructed a “firewall” between his personal life and the hackerama he embodies. I hope he’s got a warranty on that firewall, because it looks like it’s badly in need of a recall.
The story about Hefner’s depradations is lavishly detailed, like the New Yorker pieces about Weinstein, or the Variety story about Lauer. Hefner allegedly gooses another gent in the back of a Prius — of course it’s a Prius, what else would he and the senator from the People’s Republic of Amherst be riding in, except a Tesla maybe.
Hefner brags about his “pull” as he allegedly gropes younger guys and older guys. A heterosexual victim frets that “complaining about it would be seen as homophobic.”
In a time that now seems as remote as Calvin Coolidge’s, the Senate president was Billy Bulger, whose brother was a gangster from South Boston. Bulger was succeeded by Tom Birmingham, who was named after his late uncle, a gangster from Charlestown.
In retrospect, those were the good old days, when you could have faith in Massachusetts.
Order Howie’s new book “Kennedy Babylon” at howiecarrshow.com.
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