WHEN WILLIAM BULGER became president of the University of Massachusetts in 1995, I remarked that his Beacon Hill career had been one long gorging at the public trough. ”By now,” I wrote in this space, ”the dollars he has extracted to enrich himself and his relatives must run well into seven figures.” After last week’s larceny, it may be time to update that estimate. Between the $960,000 severance deal and an annual pension of at least $240,000 (but ”there are a lot of complicating factors that could make it even higher,” the state treasurer’s office says), the total Bulger take must surely be nearing the eight-figure mark — if it hasn’t passed it already.
The right answer, then as now, was: A person of integrity, someone of incorruptible character whose appointment would reflect honor on the institution. No one should have confused Bulger with such a person — least of all the man whose endorsement essentially handed him the job: Governor Weld. [Boston Globe]