Charlie Baker bucks accountability in RMV mess

President Harry S Truman had a sign on his desk: “The Buck Stops Here.”

Gov. Charlie “Tall Deval” Baker needs a sign on his desk: “The Buck Doesn’t Stop Here.”

Have you ever seen an elected official more shamelessly sprint from his culpability for a major disaster as Tall Deval has in the wake of the seven motorcyclists senselessly killed in New Hampshire last June? They died at the hands of an allegedly drunk, stoned career criminal non-citizen whose Massachusetts CDL should have been pulled years ago, if only the Registry of Motor Vehicles wasn’t so grossly negligent and incompetent.

But Tall Deval knows nothing about his own agency. Remember Hogan’s Heroes, the old TV  sitcom about a Nazi POW camp? One of the guards was Sgt. Schultz, and his trademark line was a long, drawn-out, “I know noooooooothhing!”

Q. What’s the difference between Sgt. Schultz and Tall Deval?

A. Tall Deval doesn’t have a mustache.

When he became president, Obama went on an apology tour. Now Tall Deval is on an alibi tour.

At the State House Thursday, he was asked about his abysmal stewardship of the RMV, and he responded by climbing into his own way-back machine.

“Twenty, twenty years,” he muttered. “Nobody was doing this stuff for over 20 years. That part is absolutely incredible to me.”

Um, Tall Deval, you’ve been governor now for more than four years. And you did nothing about the problem – do you consider that absolutely incredible as well? And going back 20 years – that means you’re pointing the finger at the last four governors, three of whom were Republicans, and one of whom is deceased.

On Thursday night, Baker went down to New Bedford, where he took a new tack. Did you ever hear of Louis XIV, the king of France who famously said, “Je suis l’etat.”

Translation: “I am the state.”

Meet Tall Deval, the Louis XIV of the 21st century. He is the state.

This is what he said in Bristol County about the 72 bins of undelivered suspension notices at Registry headquarters, including one OUI notice Connecticut sent that should have kept the foreign criminal Volodymyr Zhukovskyy off the road.

“We finally figured out that Connecticut had actually notified Massachusetts and Massachusetts dropped the ball on suspending Zhhukovskyy’s license –“

You follow that? Tall Deval didn’t drop the ball. Nor did the Registry, or the hackerama, or the two women he went to Needham High with who he’s had down there in Quincy off and on. No, none of them dropped the ball, the blame all rests with… Massachusetts.

“We came out right away and said this is a major fail –“ Yeah, after Connecticut provided the documentation that they had done their job, until which “Massachusetts” had been indignantly denying responsibility.

“We’ve gotta clean this up and fix it and make it right.”

Seven people are dead. How do you fix that? How do you make it right?

“Look,” Tall Deval continued babbling, “the tragedy associated with that accident in New Hampshire is something that everybody’s gonna carry.”

Everybody? I guess we’re back to “Massachusetts” dropping the ball.

Now that Connecticut is off the hook, Tall Deval is desperately trying to blame New Hampshire because… the buck doesn’t stop here. Gov. Chris Sununu is having none of it, nor should he.

Don’t worry, though, Tall Deval has come up with the solution. He’s going to hire yet another hack at the Registry – the deputy registrar of safety.

I kid you not. Now, isn’t the Registry supposed to be all about safety – making sure all the vehicles and drivers on the road (and boats in the water) are… safe. I know, it’s really all about generating more millions for the hackerama, but isn’t safety the ostensible reason the RMV exists?

The new job posting reads: “The Deputy Registrar of Safety oversees… compliance with all applicable rules, laws and regulatory requirements… champions a strong safety and compliance culture….”

Isn’t this a little like Bill Belichick posting a job opening for “Cornerback – to prevent completion of forward passes by opposing team on offense.”

The salary for this latest slot at the public trough is $110,000-125,000. In other words, it’s an entry-level position.

A nationwide search is anticipated.

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