Beam on Politics | Alex Beam

Flaherty? Menino? 10 reasons to vote yes

Councilor at Large Michael Flaherty. Councilor at Large Michael Flaherty.
By Alex Beam
Globe Columnist / November 3, 2009

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Top 10 reasons to vote for Michael Flaherty for mayor:

10. At a Flaherty event, Haitian activist Sylvane Simon compares Menino’s years in power to the genocidal Duvalier regime in Haiti.

9. His wife, Laurene, is a dead ringer for Heather Locklear. “I have been told I look like [WCVB coanchor] Heather Unruh,’’ she says.

8. He’ll invent a job for that nice Sam Yoon.

7. Plays backgammon.

6. He’s not related to disgraced former House speaker Charles Flaherty, as far as we can tell.

5. He’ll go to the airport to personally greet CEOs interested in doing business in Boston.

4. Sunglasses-clad Yoon looks like an Asian-American Ray Charles in a bold but ridiculous YouTube video of “Floon,’’ singing the Paul McCartney/Stevie Wonder ditty, “Ebony and Ivory.’’

3. Flaherty will make Boston Fun City! He enjoys the support of the Boston Nightlife Coalition, and promises to “lift up the wet blanket that currently hovers over our city.’’ Buzzkill, thy name is Menino.

2. Fun City, II: Flaherty hosted a rollicking evening of off-color humor at the South Boston pub, The Cornerstone. Noting the absence of running mate Yoon, comedian Steve Sweeney allowed himself an ethnic shot, or two: “Sam Yoon? I could never vote for Sam Yoon, because 30 minutes later I’d feel like voting for someone else.’’

1. If elected, says he’ll serve only two terms . . . the same promise Menino made in 1993.

Top 10 reasons to vote for Tom Menino for mayor:

10. You can’t fight City Hall.

9. “Menino fights against us truckers. We can’t park on no city streets in Boston’’ - Flaherty supporter quoted in a campaign video.

8. He wants to start a fish farm in Boston Harbor.

7. Plays hardball.

6. We are the Athens of America, and he is our Demosthenes: “Whatsa matter? Latinas aren’t minorities?’’ he asked while being browbeaten for the lack of ethnic diversity in his administration.

5. No voice mail at City Hall? They’re technologically fashion-forward, and they don’t know it! “The end of voice mail is nigh, and it won’t be missed,’’ Slate magazine tech writer Farhad Manjoo wrote six months ago.

4. Flaherty’s penchant for Rhetorical Over-reach: Menino’s opponent compared the abandoned Filene’s building site to “Fallujah.’’ OK, it’s an eyesore, but no Marines died at Downtown Crossing.

3. The firefighters are for Flaherty.

2. Flaherty likens Menino to jailed former mayor James Michael Curley, “The Rascal King,’’ of Jack Beatty’s memorable book title. But aren’t there two statues of Curley in downtown Boston? Isn’t his home a local landmark? Throw me in that briar patch!

1. “He is who is he is,’’ quoth the Rev. John Borders, speaking to his “dear personal friend’’ Tom Menino from the pulpit of the Morning Star Baptist Church on Sunday; “He loves the children.’’ That’s good enough for me!