Restaurants in Massachusetts tired of ‘being beat up’

This sign in Halifax sums it all up: “Charlie Baker Take 25% of Your Pay.”

This sign in Halifax sums it all up:

“Charlie Baker Take 25% of Your Pay.”

We’re all in this together, right? That’s what Gov. Baker keeps screaming at us — hectoring, lecturing, threatening, demanding, even banging his fists as he thunders one preposterous, counter-productive order after another.

But unlike his subjects, I mean constituents, the man Joe Biden calls Charlie Parker has not lost a single penny throughout this entire disaster.

For presiding over this panic more incompetently than almost any other governor in the U.S., Charlie Parker is paid $185,000 a year, plus a $65,000 housing allowance.

Even at 25%, Charlie Parker would still be grossly overpaid at $62,500 a year.

The signs — two of them — are outside the Lyonville Tavern in Halifax. It’s owned by Debra Trotta, along with Grille 58 across the street. She put the signs up about a week ago.

“I’m tired,” she was saying Thursday. “It’s been 11 months now, I’m tired of being beaten up. I’m 61, I could close up shop and retire and I’d be okay but I feel a responsibility to the people who work for me. I’ve got 60 employees. I’ve gone from four waitresses to three to two, and they’re not making any money.”

The signs, she said, are a reminder of what’s happened to most of the people in the state.

“I just wanted people to be aware of what’s happening and it’s just not fair. How come it’s okay to be a Walmart, or Lowe’s, or any big box, or a supermarket, but you can’t be in a restaurant, or a gym, or a hair salon?”

She was speaking from the kitchen at her house, where she was baking the night’s desserts for her restaurants. A year ago, the Tavern had a 70-seat capacity in its dining area, as well as 26 seats at the bar.

Now, the Tavern is down to 22-23 seats in the dining room, and maybe 16 in the bar — depending on how many people sit down at those four-person tables backed up to the bar.

“A year ago the economy was booming. My people were doing very well, they were buying cars, they were buying houses. Now … .”

She closed on March 18, the day after St. Patrick’s Day, when she got rid of all the cabbage she’d bought for the holiday to go with the corned beef.

“I figured everybody would be okay, between unemployment and the $600 checks. While we were closed, I spent $12,000 on a tent, on barriers, on fans, electrical work.”

She reopened the tavern, under some of the most draconian, absurd restrictions in the United States, on June 28.

Meanwhile, as thousands of businesses have folded, the hacks have given themselves 6% pay raises, after many of them, including the Legislature, basically took the year off with pay.

“Charlie Baker Take 25% of Your Pay.”

But Debra, Charlie Parker feels your pain. As he said last week:

“We’re still dealing with a deadly pandemic and an under-forming, an an underperforming economy that’s come with it. People remain justifiably anxious about their day-to-day and their future.”

Their day-to-day what Charlie? Tall Deval’s problem is, he never talks to any of the people whose day-to-day he has destroyed with his hysterical overreaction. Maybe if, like hundreds of thousands of his fellow citizens, he had to take a 75% pay cut … .

But do you know how hard the governor is working? Do you know what he did for you at Thanksgiving? He dispatched his hacks (none of whom have had their salaries cut) to supermarkets across the state to make sure his orders were being followed to the letter.

“We even checked out what size turkeys people were buying and it turned out that, you know, the big ones were still around on Thanksgiving Day and all the smaller ones had been sold.”

In other words, his subjects obeyed, even though the governor acknowledged they were “probably unhappy” with doing the “public-health appropriate thing.”

Next year, perhaps, turkeys over 12 pounds will be outlawed in Maskachusetts, just like menthol cigarettes.

First they came for the Newports and I said nothing. Then they came for the Butterballs and the Ovenstuffers and I said nothing.

“Charlie Baker Take 25% of Your Pay.”

You think this is easy, destroying a society?

As $165,000-a-year Lt. Gov. Karyn “Pay to Play” Polito said: “These are incredibly difficult decisions but they are necessary in order to slow down activity and reduce mobility so we can reduce the spread of COVID and keep our schools open and our economy moving.”

Or, as the apocryphal officer in Vietnam put it, “We had to destroy the village in order to save it.”

Now that I think about the calamity that Charlie, Karyn, et al. have inflicted upon us, I would make one change in the sign above the Lyonville Tavern.

“Charlie Baker Take 0% of Your Pay.”

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