Daily Archives: June 10, 2022

My Weaselometer Is About to Explode

And so we bid a fond farewell to the former Boy Wonder of Vermont politics, T.J. Donovan. He announced, on Friday afternoon (nothing suspicious there), that he would resign effective June 20ten days from now — to take an executive position with online gaming platform Roblox. His new job as director of public policy and U.S. state strategies, he said, “will allow me to continue to advance consumer protections.”

When I read that, my Weaselometer shrieked, its red lights flashed furiously, and a wisp of smoke wafted from the back of the machine. And that was before I read of the controversy surrounding Roblox. But I knewthat no one on God’s green earth has ever gone from public service to corporate executive “to advance consumer protections.”

Especially not if the new job appears to be Top In-House Lobbyist for Roblox, a publicly-traded corporation worth billions upon billions. I bet Donovan’s salary will let him afford the top-line custom-tailored suits you see in the Statehouse whenever a bigtime corporate lobbyist parachutes in to try to defeat a, ahem, “consumer protection measure.”

Now, I don’t begrudge Donovan cashing in on his legal expertise. He’s been living on public sector salaries for 16 years, and that’s a big sacrifice for a skilled attorney. But I am ticked off that he wants to have it both ways: rake in the big bucks and try to bullshit us about his reasons.

And that’s not the end of the bullshit, either.

Continue reading

Alleged Moderate Endorses Extremist

Hey, is Jim Douglas getting crotchety in his old age? Is he sporting a tinfoil hat these days? First he turns his back (in a very limited, unimpactful way) on his alma mater Middlebury College for removing the name of eugenicist Vermont Governor John Mead from a campus chapel. Now he’s gone and given his imprimatur to state Senate candidate and certified extremist John Klar.

You know, the guy who ran against Gov. Phil Scott in the Republican primary two years ago? The guy who wants to recast the VTGOP as an ultraconservative, white supremacist-adjacent organization? That guy. “We need balance in Montpelier,” Douglas wrote of Klar. “We need real-world experience. John Klar has the energy and the background to tackle our problems.”

Hmmm. “The background,” you say.

This would be the same John Klar who’s been harassing the Orange Southwest School Board over a Black Lives Matter flag, which he calls “illegal,” and has accused BLM of practicing “reverse racism.”

Continue reading