Transportation Secretary James Aloisi set a new state record for self-aggrandizement as he prepared last month to do battle with Daniel Grabauskas, the former head of the MBTA. “If this is our 1939, I sure as heck am not going to allow myself to be Poland,’’ wrote Aloisi in an e-mail obtained this week by the Globe. A deputy secretary, perhaps better described as an aide-de-camp, advised Aloisi in turn to be “more Churchill than Chamberlain.’’ What the heck is going on at transportation headquarters? First Aloisi and his loyalists load up on Grabauskas - a competent holdover from the former Romney administration - for reasons that appear more political or personal than substantive. And then they imagine themselves as British prime ministers confronting the advent of World War II.
Right now, most Bostonians would prefer a vision of reliable, reasonably priced commuter service to one of historical grandeur. But in case Aloisi and his troops develop any Mussolini fantasies, they should note that historians believe the Italian rail system worked efficiently before Il Duce came to power.