THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN SERIOUS AND NOT. That would be the difference between Attorney General Tom Reilly and Governor Mitt Romney.
Item one: Romney sends the marriage-license applications of 10 out-of-state same-sex couples to Reilly's office and demands that Reilly take action to prevent them from getting married. Romney: "We all have the same interests. To make sure the law is carried out." Reilly: "We have an awful lot of other things going on, so we'll deal with this as it comes." (Globe coverage here; Herald coverage here.)
Item two: Six ex-employees of the Registry of Motor Vehicles are being investigated for their alleged role in a scheme to sell illegal driver's licenses. The Globe reports: "Reilly called the allegations 'deeply disturbing' because of the potential dangers posed by those in the country illegally with false documents and by dangerous drivers being returned to the road." (Globe coverage here; Herald coverage here.)
In other words, when Reilly says he has better things to do than persecute gay and lesbian couples, he's not kidding.
IT DEPENDS ON HOW YOU COUNT
New University of Massachusetts president Jack M. Wilson will earn $350,000 a year plus an array of benefits including hefty car and housing allowances, under an agreement reached with trustees this week, a UMass spokesman said.
The salary is higher than that of his predecessor, William M. Bulger, who earned $309,000 plus benefits, but falls well short of the $400,000 limit that trustees set on Wilson's pay before starting negotiations this month.
New UMass President Jack Wilson inked a five-year contract this week that could pay him nearly a cool half-million dollars his first year - $140,000 more than his predecessor.
The contract was signed late Tuesday, a UMass spokesman said, giving Wilson, a former physicist, a handsome pay package of as much as $497,000 for his first year on the job - his first as university president anywhere.
As you will see, the facts in both stories are the same - it's just that the Herald totaled up Wilson's benefits. Since money is money, I'd say the Herald provides a truer picture.
TUNE IN SATURDAY AT 3 P.M. I'll be appearing tomorrow on WBIX Radio in Boston (AM 1060) between 3 and 4 p.m. on Family Talk Radio, with Deirdre Wilson and Peter Chianca, to talk about my book on dwarfism, Little People: Learning to See the World Through My Daughter's Eyes.
If you're out of the signal range, listen live here.