All This Plus Bagels And Coffee

I’m worn out and its is still only August.

My ears are ringing from assorted chainsaws, diesel engines, string trimmers and mowers. The knees are holding up but barely—so I took a short vacation yesterday.

I hopped on the 6:50 am shuttle out of Boston with all the laptop draggers and went to DC the Americans For Tax Reform “Wednesday Meeting.” It was like a shot in the arm.

Grover Norquist, the head of ATR , was in his usual spot at the twenty foot table surrounded but issue advocates from all over the spectrum of the center right side of politics.

Part of the invitation only package is that you promise not divulge what people say at the meeting but you can pass on what is printed. There is an armload of material on each seat. I will be using it on our NH Taxpayer Radio program on WLMW 90.7 FM for some time.

You get polling data and analysis to die for. There is first hand information from people working on political and economic issues in other countries. Topics cover anything from FISA to talk radio. The White House sends people as well. Candidates and their representatives stop by.

I would guess that about a dozen or so people speak and take questions all in the span of an hour and a half. It is not boring. In short it is a “say what you have to say and sit down” forum complete with well placed zingers if you have a momentary brain lock and stumble for a name or word—all in good fun of course.

Since I have been going to these meetings every so often for a number of years (how’s that for vague) I can’t help but notice how many young people who used to work for ATR have moved on to other organizations and are still involved in the fight to limit oppressive, expensive, unaccountable government. It gets a bit frustrating at times to lose one of our CNHT Directors to the legislature, a budget committee, political campaign, or selectman’s seat. From watching ATR I have come to understand I will have to accept that as part of the natural cycle of things - no good old boys club here.

Can’t forget the best part of this trip.

My neighbor’s daughter, Deana Dennis, who I have known since she was about four years old, went along to the Wednesday Meeting with me. She works at a law firm just a few blocks away. (She’s been a political junkie since she was a teenager so I think she had a good time at the center of the vast right wing conspiracy.)

Not a bad deal. I had an expert guide who knows where to eat lunch and who could point me to the Metro. (Thanks Deana.)