Weekend Redux: What You Missed
Just because you spent all weekend tending to your frostbite doesn’t mean the world stopped moving. We round up the notable stories you missed.
It was pretty much the Leeland Eisenberg show all weekend long. The 46-year-old man from Somersworth, NH held Hillary Clinton campaign staffers hostage for nearly six hours on Friday. Turns out Eisenberg had been on a drinking bender for 72 hours before going to Clinton’s Rochester office. If he’d been drinking for that long, why didn’t he just order a pizza and pass out like the rest of us?
Eisenberg was also a victim of the church sexual abuse scandal and is going through a divorce. He reportedly told investigators that he wanted to talk to Clinton because he was unable to afford psychiatric treatment. If only Bill Clinton found a way to get universal healthcare, maybe this whole mess could have been avoided.
Of course, all of the candidates are evaluating their security measures after the hostage situation. After the five-hour standoff, the goodwill ended and the sniping began apace. As the Iowa caucuses draw closer, independent groups are starting to run negative ads. Former governor Mitt Romney is the first to get the treatment from a pro-life Republican group.
The Massachusetts State House: Brought to you by Friendly’s and Bank of America? It could happen.
The Leeland Eisenberg weekend continues, this time with his stepson’s recollection of Eisenberg’s pre-hostage-taking state of mind.
“I’ve never seen Lee that wound up,” [stepson Benjamin] Warren said. “Lee is a very intelligent person. Even when he’s real good and drunk, he’s still smart and pretty in touch with himself. He just repeated himself a lot.” Warren added: “All he said to me was he was feeling very depressed and he was going to do something the next day to ensure he would be in the hospital by Friday night.”
Creepy, right? It’s clear to just about anyone that Eisenberg isn’t well. But what does Warren do?
. . . Eisenberg asked Warren if he could buy flares at the local convenience store. The answer was no, but Warren said he told him he could get them at an auto parts shop.
Why would you direct a man who’s openly declared he wants to get attention and be hospitalized on how to purchase something that could be construed as a bomb?
The Globe also brings us down by reminding us that the number of gay bars in the city has steeply declined in the past decade.
The MBTA and the town of Brookline are in the midst of a spat. The town installed new “smart lights” on Beacon Street that will adjust signals with traffic conditions and pedestrian traffic. However, the MBTA did not invest in technology that would have factored C Line trains in to the mix.
MBTA spokesman Joe Pesaturo said the T will not invest in trolley-recognition technology until Brookline provides the MBTA with a study that demonstrates how the T stands to benefit from it.
“The T asked the town for this information more than two years ago, and the T is still waiting for a response,” [MBTA spokesman Joe] Pesaturo wrote in an e-mail. “The T will not make a major investment before establishing all of the facts.”
According to city officials, however, the MBTA simply was not interested in purchasing trolley-recognition devices for traffic lights. Will this make the C Line just as mind-numbingly slow as the B Line? Stay tuned.
This has nothing to do with Boston, but Ted Turner is buying up land in huge quantities throughout the country. His minions claim he likes to ranch, but Turner’s new neighbors have some theories of their own.
Among the theories: Turner is trying to corner the land over the Ogallala Aquifer, the world’s largest underground water system, to gain power in the water-starved West.
Or he is scheming, perhaps with the United Nations, to create a vast wildlife refuge and turn it over to the federal government, removing the land from Nebraska’s tax rolls. That could hurt schools and other services already starved for cash.
Maybe he just wants to build some casinos? That seems to be the cool thing to do nowadays. If he starts talking to Donald Trump, we’ll know what’s up.