The Arkanssouri Blog.
WARNING! This is not underwear! Do not attempt to put in pants!
Tuesday, January 31, 2006
Mine doesn't look like that . . .
ESL Democrats: Vote Early, Vote Often . . .
... and don't forget to tip your voter.
A former Democratic election worker in this battered city was sentenced Monday to a year and a half in federal prison and a City Hall volunteer got probation for scheming to buy votes in the November 2004 election.
But I thought such things were a REPUBLICAN problem!
Australia: The key to bad behavior is in the jeans.
No, not 'genes.' Jeans.
I hate magical thinking. One behaves how one chooses to behave, not how one's fabric forces one to behave. Someone tell these doofs to join the Enlightenment with the rest of us.
Monday, January 30, 2006
One for the homies in their pajamas.
Ask Bob Woodruff if there's no downside.
Damn I wish comments weren't closed on this one from 1/26 on CBS' Public Eye:
Christ, the theocrats will bitch about ANYTHING.
On Jake Tapper's 'Down and Dirty' ABC News blog, in the entry about Bob Woodruff and John Vogt's injuries, Jake Tapper lists some resources for many religions' prayers for the sick and injured, if you're so inclined.
You guessed it.
In the comments, "sophillyfatz" bitched about it.
Why is it necessary to be so politically correct to such a degree that even in prayers for healing the sick one has to be "with it" and not use traditional prayers (Jewish section)?
It's becoming increasingly clear that the only way to tell the difference between an al-Qaeda member and a Christian fundamentalist is to look for the one wearing a turban.
Is it tacky to wonder . . .
. . . if there's an Elizabeth Vargas curse?
'Cuz it sure seems like the men around her are suffering a series of unfortunate events.
And CNN wonders . . .
... why we have to go elsewhere to find news that's "Fair and Balanced."
From yesterday's CNN Live Sunday, Suzanne Malveaux asks a former Enron employee:
And this trial, of course, is starting tomorrow. Obviously you're going to be paying very close attention to it. Do you think that this is going to be
fair? Do you think that Ken Lay and Jeffrey Skilling will be found guilty? Or do
you think this is perhaps just an exercise?
"Fair" equals a guilty verdict? And anything other than a guilty verdict is "just an exercise"?
I just couldn't keep all the bizarreness to myself...
I once suggested . . .
Friday, January 27, 2006
I couldn't make this stuff up if I tried.
Who possibly wants to wear such a thing as a "Yellow Scat Scarf"?
I know what MOM's getting for Mother's Day!
Thursday, January 26, 2006
1836 men on the field.
In real football, anything over 11 will get you a penalty.
Yeah, you heard right. The Houston 1836. Not 1836'ers. 1836.
Even I could come up with a better franchise name, in an old league on Front Page Sports fbpro96 -- the Houston Solution.
Ronnie Milsap could sing the national anthem, and perform at halftime. Or, wait, would that be 'thirdtime'? Or is that hockey?
The Houston 1836.
I need to go lie down. It makes my head hurt.
[Hat tip to Anne of BlogHOUSTON and PTI.]
Is there an salve I can use for that?
Don we now our tinfoil hats.
The Register brings us news of a 21st-century Chitty Chitty Bang Bang in Perth, Australia.
The sad thing is, there's more evidence there than there is of a second shooter on the grassy knoll.
I'll tell you one more time, people.
I don't want to hear Angelina Jolie's views on world poverty. I don't care about Moby's ideas on Presidential power. I believe President Bush possesses no special insight on car design.
And the person with the LEAST insight on love, sex, and marriage is the Pope.
Stick with what you know, people. Fry cooks don't have special insight into brain surgery. Rodeo clowns don't know much about rocket science. Accountants can't write country music worth a flip. Politicians shouldn't sing, and singers shouldn't politic.
And I'll say it again, I really, really don't need sex advice from the Pope, any more than I should seek absolution from Dr. Ruth.
How to get blocked by Google China, part two.
(Write this down, folks. I'm actually going to say something good about CNN and Lou Dobbs Tonight.)
Kitty Pilgrim, in a segment on Lou Dobbs Tonight last night called 'Dot Commies,' began to make an excellent point that even free traders such as myself should acknowledge:
PILGRIM: Now, the congressman goes on to add that Americans were told that globalization and free trade would make countries like China more democratic. But recent decisions by Microsoft, Yahoo!, now Google show otherwise.
I'll fix that last sentence for her.
Recent decisions by Microsoft, Yahoo!, now Google show that, in fact, the opposite is true. Globalization and free trade seem to be making the rest of the world, and certainly the companies that deal with the communist countries, more ANTI-democratic.
The Times Online has a pretty good article on Google getting in bed with the devil here.
Randian Superhero of the Day.
[Hat tip to Volokh, via Tom Rants.]
It's nice to know that not all of today's businessmen belong on the Landthieves Wiki.
One who doesn't is John Allison.
On Wednesday, Allison made the unusual decision to announce a corporate
policy regarding eminent domain, that controversial practice in which the
government can seize private property for public use. BB&T ... is not
going to lend money to any developer that plans to build on property seized in
such a manner. "The idea that a citizen's property can be taken by the
government solely for private use is extremely misguided," Allison said in a
statement. "In fact, it's just plain wrong."
Good does still exist in this world. Sometimes people do things because it's the right thing to do. But Forbes just can't keep itself from questioning those people's motives:
It also smacks of another trend in banking: the idea that doing good will result in good press.
Motives only matter in determining whether or not a certain person committed a particular act. In this case, there's no question about it -- he did it. And good for him.
Shrug on, Atlas.
Can someone help me with this?
I just posted this over at the TTA, but I have different readers over here, so maybe someone here can answer whether I'm reading what I think I'm reading:
In today's SMN, an article by Jan Sisk Lawrence, titled Election ballots set, mentions the following (emphasis mine, not theirs):
Ambulance - Oregon County Clerk Gary Hensley has announced no one has filed for either of the two positions open on the county ambulance board. He said two candidates will be chosen as write-in candidates. Hensley said the candidates chosen will have to accept the position.
Have to? Are we resorting to involuntary indentured servitude now?
I keep thinking surely I'm misinterpreting this, or maybe it's a typo of some sort, or maybe it was taken out of context. But then I think, in what context is this not a civilian draft?
Again, this isn't in their online edition yet, so if you want to see for yourself, you'll have to get a dead-tree copy.
Wednesday, January 25, 2006
How to Get Blocked by Google China.
Google has gotten in bed with the devil. However, it seems this little blog is still making it through. Let's remedy that, shall we?
Capitalism is good. The Chinese government murdered people in the Tiananmen Square Massacre.
Communism rewards failure and punishes success and is doomed to fail.
Government exists to protect rights, not fill needs.
God is not the state and the state is not God.
Government should serve the people, not the other way around.
Human rights matter.
Censorship, no matter how Google tries to finesse it, is wrong.
Chairman Mao was an evil, murderous bastard. He is in Hell right now.
ADDENDUM: Oh, yeah, I forgot a couple.
Parents, not the government, should decide how many children to have.
And . . .
Gay cowboys ROCK!
But I thought it was BUSH that caused Katrina...
... turns out I was mistaken. It was Ayn Rand.
Largely, we just stare. So typically, when New Orleans filled with water
and FEMA did nothing, we stared, and we watched an old pattern unfold: where
there are a lot of people in crisis, somebody will make formidable money.
We should have known it was coming.
If FEMA’s response had been swift and effective it would have looked heroic, for both the common person and for the common good. FEMA’s inaction was not a botch. There are deep corridors behind this.
It was close to what Ayn Rand’s disciples have in mind, and I believe there are plenty of Rand’s disciples in places of high influence.
Note the concern not with how many people were saved, but that somebody made a few bucks doing it.
And didn't we have this discussion a couple of years ago, only instead of "Randian cabal" it was "Straussian cabal"?
Tuesday, January 24, 2006
More fun with Inappropriate Product Names.
Originally uploaded by Arkanssouri.
Or, as my friend Kevin used to suggest, "Japanese Cheese Friends"?
It's Reefer Madness, I tell you.
Note the sneaky way this man-bites-man story implies that marijuana use is to blame, without actually saying marijuana is to blame.
FORT LAUDERDALE, Florida (AP) -- An airline passenger bit a fellow traveler Monday, then jumped out of a jetliner as it was moving to take off, authorities said. He was later subdued with a stun gun.
Rigby will be charged with criminal mischief, criminal trespass, battery, resisting arrest with violence and battery on a law enforcement officer, in addition to an outstanding warrant for marijuana possession, the sheriff's office said.
The pot warrant is irrelevant to the crime. Why include it?
Because, to quote Mr. Mackey, DRUGS ARE BAD.
Who decides these things?
So I'm at Wal-Mart a few days ago, and I decide to get a cheap microrecorder to record city council meetings, so I can better blog about them.
Wal-Mart has the recorders, but doesn't carry the tapes. What use is the recorder without the tapes?
I suppose I could dig out one of my old recordable Walkmans.
Or I could do like dude from the radio station and carry a thump-ass microphone with a bright yellow head, so I could sit in the front row and lay it on the ground in front of me.
Or I could save up some scratch and get a digital voice recorder.
Too bad Jesus didn't think of that.
'Cause He'd be one rich MoFo by now.
Vatican sells out.
Publishers will have to negotiate a levy of between 3 per cent and 5 per
cent of the cover price of any book or publication “containing the Pope’s
words”. Those who infringe the copyright face legal action and a higher levy of
15 per cent.
But if the Pope is God's representative on earth, speaking for God, then aren't the words GOD's intellectual property, not the Vatican's?
Morton Downey Jr.'s ghost.
This would have been perfect for his show -- a reunion of the Buttafuocos and Amy Fisher.
Maybe it will be a joint effort between Geraldo and Jerry Springer.
This reminds us that the term "attention whore" existed long before Paris Hilton.
And it gives a chance to say "Buttafuoco" one more time.
Monday, January 23, 2006
It may just replace "Esera Tuaolo Nude."
Swedish dude who got here searching for "peeing in my kilt" on MSN:
Get some help, man.
Saturday, January 21, 2006
I hate ties. I despies them. I absolutely loathe them.
So why did I buy two black shirts and a tie for my birthday yesterday?
Because it is the Best Tie Ever. It colorshifts from red to black. Very vampiry.
I brought it home and tried it on.
Or, rather, tried to try it on.
I realized that it has been so long that I no longer remember how to tie a tie.
Maybe this nice gentleman will help me.
Oh, no he did-dint!
I had a birthday. It existed independently of my happiness or unhappiness or absolute indifference to it. Emotion is irrelevant.
But then some chickenshit anonymous commenter went rippin' on Diamond.
Debate my positions all you want. Debate KIP's positions all you want.
But a personal attack on the appearance of someone's child? That's just cowardly.
I guess if you can't refute the position, you attack the person. And if you can't attack the person, you go after their family. Total chickenshit.
But if Chickenshit Anonymous Commenter wants to go that route, Diamond leaves more beauty on a newspaper on the floor than Chickenshit Anonymous Commenters ever HOPE to have in their entire lives.
Friday, January 20, 2006
John Ashcroft's ghost rattles it's chain.
Why I may have to find another search engine.
[Update: A closer reading reveals that even that won't keep the government out of my business:
The government indicated that other, unspecified search engines have agreed
to release the information, but not Google.
Why won't they tell us which ones have caved?]
Kickass Lawn Mower.
RETRACTED: Katrina: The New El Niño.
Well, it seems Hurricane Katrina is the new El Niño.
Because here in Missouri (Missouri!), the Kat's being blamed for the Taum Sauk reservoir disaster.
Never mind the two were seperated by almost a month and more than 600 miles.
Blogmaster's note: I feel stupid. And contagious. I got home last night and realized maybe they were talking about Rita, not Katrina. Maybe I had misread the story.
Then I heard a radio news report that confirmed it was indeed Rita.
And then this morning, a nice anonymous commenter let me know the error has not gone unnoticed.
Unlike Dan Rather and CBS, I have no problem admitting when I make a mistake. And I don't blame it on pajama-clad bloggers.
Nor do I employ the Jayson Blair defense, which is "I was drunk." I was NOT drunk. Yet.
I was fully prepared to employ the Clinton defense, no not the "It depends on the meaning of 'Katrina'" one. Or the "I did not have hurricanal relations with that reservoir" one. I would have used the one that Hillary used to explain why missing records were found in their closet -- the "We are inept" defense. Hey, it worked for her.
But then, when I was able to log on this morning, I found that the original error was KAIT's, not mine. But instead of employing the OJ Simpson "It wasn't me" defense, I accept full responsibility for not verifying the news story from a second source.
Big Brother and the 85 MPH Tractor.
Yeah, the "world" has "bigger" things to worry "about"...
... than extraneous use of quotation marks, but I find this irritating.
"Steven" Pearlstein, a Business "Columnist" for the Washington "Post," writes in a "column" on Alan "Greenspan":
A determination to substitute the wisdom of markets for the heavy hand of
government runs through the Greenspan story. It begins with the heady Greenwich
Village days as a follower of Ayn Rand's "objectivist" movement, continues
through his years as economic adviser in the Ford White House, ...
What point is he trying to make by putting quotation marks around the word? Would he write about "Christian" conservatives? "Social" liberals? "Fiscal" conservatives? "Gay" cowboys? Eating "pudding"?
In contexts such as this, the use of quotation marks usually is a short-cut for "so-called" or "wink-wink, nudge-nudge." Is he implying that Ayn Rand's philosophy only claimed to be the [O]bjectivist movement, but wasn't the real [O]bjectivist movement?
End quotation mark abuse NOW!
Maybe we can get some former Clinton White House staffers to go into his office and steal all the quotation mark keys off his keyboards.
Thursday, January 19, 2006
Changed the subtitle of this little blog.
It's the Addams Family motto. Ostensibly, it means "We gladly feast on those who would subdue us."
But the closest thing I can find to a Latin-English online translator doesn't think so.
[Update: I suppose I could always go with a more-easily translated language -- Banqueteamos contentamente en los que nos dominarían. ]
Sledgehammers: More fun than scalpels!
You might be a food addict if . . .
these are the only people who send you a birthday card:
Well, I guess I shouldn't say 'only' yet. My birthday's not until tomorrow, so there's still time I suppose for the cards to come flooding in.
But I'm not holding my breath.
And since when did the Chicken of the Sea mermaid become a bleach-blonde clone of Ariel? Didn't she used to look like this?
Wednesday, January 18, 2006
More join the 21st-Century Prohibition Movement.
axes the DVD release of the South Park episode where Tom Cruise is literally trapped in a closet.
The episode also portrayed the "Church" of Scientology unflatteringly, which I suspect may be the actual reason the episode got axed.
Grow a sack, Paramount.
South Park has a BBS, if you want to share your opinion on this. But be warned; registering for it's a bitch. So far, they've never sent me my confirmation email, so I can't comment.
Tuesday, January 17, 2006
I'm a little late on this,
but I did want to mention it.
September 11th is still claiming lives.
“If you were healthy and it happened again, would you go, he said I would go all over again,” said the victim’s father, Joseph Zadroga.
James spent as many as 16 hours a day at ground zero, searching for victims. His family says the long hours started catching up with him nearly a month after the tragedy. He retired in 2004 after developing a constant cough and other respiratory problems that required him to use a machine for oxygen.
Really, a million?
I must point out that, if The Smoking Gun held itself to the same standard that it holds James Frey, it would expose it's own vast exaggeration of the number of lies in his book. Have they counted them?
They seem completely unaware that autobiographies are NEVER "the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth."
Why don't they comb through, say this or this and apply the same standard they're applying to Frey's?
Honestly, who cares if some of the details in Frey's book are kind of mushy? That tends to HAPPEN with drug addicts.
But I bet lots of people on both sides of the political spectrum would be interested in a vigorous combing through of the details of the Clintons.
Content of their character 0, Color of their skin 1.
Ray Nagin (and God, he claims) dreams of a 'chocolate' New Orleans.
When called on it, he backtracks like a manic crawfish:
"How do you make chocolate? You take dark chocolate, you mix it with white milk, and it becomes a delicious drink. That is the chocolate I am talking about," he said.
"New Orleans was a chocolate city before Katrina. It is going to be a chocolate city after. How is that divisive? It is white and black working together, coming together and making something special."
Is there no room in New Orleans for Hispanic chocolate? Native-American chocolate need not apply? Is is a case of "Yellow chocolate go home!"?
Hurricane Katrina destroyed the buildings. Hurricane Nagin and his little commission will destroy the city.
He's a lumberjack and he's okay...
I think the doctors may have mistakenly implanted a vagina in him instead of a kidney.
Or maybe an ovary.
that it happened on Prohibition Remembrance Day.
Smoking ban on businesses in the Chicago Soviet took effect yesterday.
How long until it's outlawed altogether?
Monday, January 16, 2006
Why I am not a big-o Objectivist.
I posted this comment on another blog, and thought it might make good reading here.
My problems with the Randroids like not with Objectivism itself, but rather with Objectivists.
A vast majority of them seem to be stuck in the moment Ayn Rand died, able only to regurgitate her words, but not able to extrapolate her philosophy into a modern mindset.
Take Ayn Rand's view on homosexuality, for instance. She believed that it was a choice. And it was a reasonable belief at the time.
But in the years since her death, new scientific evidence has arisen that certain brain structures are different in homosexuals than in heterosexuals, meaning they are hard-wired that way.
And we all know what Ayn Rand said about people acting against their nature -- that it can't be done.
Given the new evidence, Ayn Rand would almost certainly have reassessed her belief.
But the Objectivists are still spouting the [words from the] text of a speech she gave on the matter as if they were Bible verses. Rather like androids, I must say.
Why can't they synthesize her philosophy with what is, instead of what they want to be? I guess what I'm asking is, why can't the Objectivists live in objective reality?
If he missed the point any further, he'd be getting CLOSER to it.
From one fellow's disagreements with Objectivism:
1. Objective reality exists but this reality exists for each person and not as a whole.
Objective reality exists, but only subjectively?
Why do I even try?
Dissent, apparently, is not a democratic value.
You gotta wonder why one would allow comments, but only from "team members."
Why, you ask?
Because the left finds mutual-admiration echo chambers preferable to political debate.
Here's the comment I tried to leave:
If a Ford Dealer can refuse to sell Chryslers, or a convenience store can refuse to sell beer, why shouldn't a pharmacist be allowed to refuse to sell contraceptives?
Honestly, is anyone truly excited . . .
. . . that either the Panthers or the Broncos are going to the Super Bowl?
I would have loved to see an old-school Super Bowl featuring the Steelers and the Bears, but as it is, I may not even watch.
At least the Steelers took care of the Koltskis. A just universe does not allow evil to triumph.
Dieting vicariously through television.
When I’m rushing on my run
And I feel just like jesus’ son
And I guess that I just don’t know
And I guess that I just don’t know
I have made the big decision.
- Heroin, by Velvet Underground.
What does it mean that when I watch a weight-loss show such as Celebrity Fit Club or The Biggest Loser, I have to go on a carb binge?
In case I haven't mentioned it before, I am a (self-diagnosed) food addict. I have been on a food bender for weeks now, set off when I went to renew my license and the clerk, without weighing me or asking my weight, put the weight on my license at 350 lbs. I have to walk around for six years now with a little card in my wallet saying I weigh 350 pounds.
She upped the weight that was on my old license by about 50 pounds. Bitch.
A normal person would look at that number and decide to show the bitch by losing all the extra weight. But that's not how it works with me.
For some reason, and I don't know why, when people point out that I am fat, I want to . . . no, not 'want' . . . I have to gorge myself on carbs. And once I take that first hit of sugar, that's all she wrote; I'm done for.
So it's been for weeks -- I can't eat just a handful of potato chips; I have to eat all of them. I can't eat a package of Ho-Ho's; I have to eat a box of them. And don't even ask about the ramen noodles.
And all the while, I'm watching TV shows trying to figure out how to get this under control. But I can't watch them without them setting me off further.
How does one detox from a substance they'll die without?
Friday, January 13, 2006
Dantooine... they're on Dantooine...
What, no flying squirrels?
The nearly-random quote of the day:
Vatican: Judas was Robin to Jesus' Batman.
Oh, I see. For two thousand years, we have been mistaken. Because, it seems Judas wasn't such a bad guy after all.
If I was a Christ-y type, I'd be wondering right about now if Pope Benny, the former Hitler youth and protector of child molesters, is actually the Antichrist.
Maybe she should come back as Mrs. Butterworth.
Be afraid, Jimmy Carter.
That's Clan Gunn Society, not Klan Gun Society.
If this school truly held the conviction that their anti-Scottish bigotry was justified, then it would not matter how many people objected to it.
And if they didn't hold that conviction, then why did they do it in the first place.
Right and wrong exist independently of the number of objectors.
In the end, the right thing was done and the Scottish-American community can celebrate their heritage at this school. So kilt on, young men!
Big Brother is watching you shower.
And he knows if you're peeing in it.
Actually, he's watching your water consumption.
He doesn't need to worry about me. Last month, I bought and installed one of these. It easily allows me to get wet, shut off the water and lather and shampoo up, turn the water back on to rinse off, turn it off again to put conditioner in my hair (and brush my teeth while giving the conditioner time to work), and turn it back on to rinse off again. This is saving me loads of water.
Why do I do this?
I don't give a damn about the environment or water shortages. Nor do I give a damn about regulations.
So why, then?
Because it is in my economic self-interest to do so. It reduces my water bill. That's it, pure and simple. Self-interest is the reason, and it is the ONLY reason.
Rage Against The Machine, literally.
UK Court to impudent citizen: Respect the machine's authoritah!
Respect is earned, not an entitlement. What did the camera do to earn this fellow's respect?
The Health Nazis are coming; will they bring copiers?
My notes on last night's Thayer (Missouri) School Board meeting are up over at the Thayer Taxpayers' Association blog.
Thursday, January 12, 2006
Just the other day I was saying . . .
. . . the world doesn't have enough glow-in-the-dark pigs.
Which brings us to our nearly random quote of the day:
They claim that while other researchers have bred partly fluorescent
pigs, theirs are the only pigs in the world which are green through and through.
Is that a sequel to "Santa Claus Conquers The Martians"?
Oh, those donations donations.
From AP Newsbreak:
Matthew Rodham-Blunt: Big Government Conservative.
Watched the State of the State speech last night.
I was struck at Blunt's self-cheerleading about all the increased spending and growth of government he's put through. I don't think he mentioned a single department he shrank or spending item he cut.
Take this, for example:
We are saving millions of dollars within state government that can be sent to schools, used to provide health care or to improve Missouri’s roads, highways and bridges.
Note that refunding some of the money to the people who paid it doesn't even cross his mind, only finding ways to spend it.
Later, we have this excerpt, where Blunt praises both his own ability to spend other people's money AND the concept of "From each according to his ability, to each according to his need.":
I pledged to Missourians that I would deliver consistent increases to our schools and that withholdings would stop.
Last year, we fulfilled that promise and delivered 158 million new dollars to public schools, a 4.4 percent increase. We also passed a new funding formula that is based on the needs of Missouri schoolchildren rather than the taxing capacity of school districts.
But I thought it was the liberals who channel the spirit of Karl Marx, Governor Blunt. Why are you doing some Marx channelling of your own?
Next, Governor Blunt boasts of his ability to outspend the tax-and-spend Democrats.
At the same time, we ensured that last year’s budget provided public colleges and universities with more funding than any budget of the prior administration.
Later, we find that in Bluntworld the primary function of government is not to protect and defend the rights of individuals, but rather . . .
My priorities remain clear. From preschool to college, the state budget should reflect the Number One fiscal priority of state government — “to educate and prepare our children for the 21st century.”
To that end, he again boasts of his own desire and ability to increase spending:
A key component of my comprehensive childhood education commitment is an increased investment in Parents as Teachers.
My new budget provides another $1 million to Parents as Teachers in addition to last year’s increase. I am committed to delivering more taxpayer resources to Missouri schools every year.
and he continues with his government-as-drunken-sailor model:
Last year we increased state aid to education by $158 million. My new budget fully funds the first year of the new school foundation formula and provides a total increase of 167 million new education dollars. Combined, these increases will result in 325 million new dollars for schools delivered by my administration and this General Assembly.
He then moves on to higher education, where he throws money like confetti and denounces unfortunate budget cuts and capitalistic user fees known as tuition:
Prior to my service as governor, colleges and universities were hit with significant cuts. This year, my budget calls for a $17 million increase for state colleges and universities, providing them with the resources they need to improve quality and hold back tuition increases.
But wait, there's more:
The A+ program is an additional tool that helps young Missourians stay in school and ensures that advanced learning is a reality for more Missourians. My budget increases state funding for A+ by $1.8 million, which will allow additional Missouri young people to attend community college and acquire the skills they need to be competitive in today’s global economy.
Residential care facilities such as Boys and Girls Town and Edgewood provide the love and support that can dramatically impact troubled children’s lives.
Last year my budget recommended a $2.1 million increase in funding for these care providers. This year, I am pleased to include 2.8 million new state dollars in my budget request for residential care facilities.
He then moves on to the Nanny Nation Issue du'jour:
Smoking is one of the leading health care cost drivers. In Missouri, smoking takes thousands of lives and devastates families.
We all pay the costs of smoking through increased insurance premiums, social welfare for smokers and most significantly through the loss of family and friends afflicted with cancer. The tobacco settlement funds have been misused in the past, and I propose that $1 million of those dollars be spent on smoking prevention and cessation this year.
What's that, Governor Blunt? The solution is not to allow insurance companies to opt out of covering smoking-related illnesses? Nor is it to end social welfare for smokers? And you say it's somehow the government's concern that people lose family and friends to cancer? You say the solution is instead for the government to spend a million bucks telling people what they can or cannot put in their own bodies?
Next he throws some money at Grandma:
However, some seniors and low-income Missourians have been pushed past their financial ability to keep up, and we must respond. In order to help low-income Missourians pay high winter heating bills I ask that $6.1 million be dedicated immediately to Missouri’s Utilicare program.
This program has never been fully funded and has received no funding since 2001. This crucial funding will provide real assistance to seniors and low-income Missourians. No Missourian should have to choose between heating and eating, between utilities or groceries.
Most seniors and disabled adults would like to remain in their own homes. In-home health care is more cost effective, and it allows them to do so. Last year, working together, we increased funding for in-home health care services.
To continue encouraging home care as an option, this year’s budget calls for a $10.9 million general revenue increase to improve the quality and availability of in-home health care.
But . . . don't they already OWN their homes?
Then he moves on to an unfunded mandate that takes choice away from the consumer:
I also call upon this General Assembly to pass an “Energy and Green Power Initiative,” to reach beyond full funding for biodiesel and ethanol incentives.
I ask that we give Missouri’s heartland economy a major and lasting boost by requiring that motor fuel sold in Missouri for passenger cars and trucks contain 10 percent ethanol.
He moves on to throwing money at dope fiends:
Drug courts save the state money. A University of Missouri study demonstrated that the cost per drug court participant is $5,400 versus the $14,000 cost the state bears to incarcerate a drug related inmate.
Many nonviolent drug offenders can be better punished and rehabilitated through drug courts, which is why my budget provides them with a $2.1 million increase.
You really want to save the state money, Governor Blunt? Stop punishing and "rehabilitating" nonviolent drug offenders altogether. Decriminalize simple recreational drug use.
And it goes on and on . . .
My administration remains committed to providing meaningful assistance to our neediest citizens. Medicaid is an important state program. That is why my budget asks for $275 million additional state dollars to sustain its current commitments.
This significant increase will allow us to continue providing health care for 16 percent of our fellow citizens. It also means that this important program will receive 29 percent of the entire budget.
My budget provides an additional $700,000 for the funding of new community health centers which will benefit tens of thousands of Missourians.
25 million new state dollars for a new Health Care Technology Fund.
I look forward to working with all of you to ensure that the state funded MissouriRx program is a robust supplement to the federal benefit.
The new student need-based funding formula is now the law, and I have recommended that we fully fund it.
He even once again channels Karl Marx:
As we tackle other tough issues ahead we should keep in mind the words of the Bible that “to whomever much is given, much will be required.”
Be honest, folks. If you didn't know who gave this speech, wouldn't Hillary Clinton, Howard Dean, or Ted Kennedy cross your mind?
Tweedledee, meet Tweedledum.
The five minute job only took (at least) ten days.
Finally the animal carcasses dumped at the Warm Fork Park are gone. After ten days. I didn't get a chance to check yesterday, but this morning they are gone.
On a hunch, I also checked out the (17th-century) bathroom.
Whoever cleaned up the corpses did not replace the toilet paper. Or clean the dead leaves and stagnant, standing water on the bathroom floor.
Maybe they would have cleaned up the dead animals faster if I'd stayed on their butts with a call every day, but I'm the type of person who believes you should have to pester people into doing their job. One report should be enough.
Wednesday, January 11, 2006
Nearly random quote of the day.
If you wanna hang out you got to take her out.
Mayor Crackhead's back on the nose candy.
Anyone have an animated GIF for Samuel L. Jackson doing the Crackhead Dance?
Kooks and Liars.
His name is Russell Tice. And as you can see, he is not nearly as hot as Mike Tice.
His security clearance was revoked, and he was later dismissed, by the NSA for "psychological concerns."
Note to the feds: I am annoyed by the Huffington Post.
Annoying someone over the Internet is now a federal crime.
God, he's kidding, right?
Ted Kennedy's dog is named Splash?
Does he have a cat named Glug-Glug?
And a horse named Chappaquiddick Sam?
Run Bessie Run!
High-speed chase: Bovine Edition.
Sometimes fleeing is successful.
Just not for OJ.
Bread and Circuses.
My observations on last night's Thayer City Council meeting can be found over at the Thayer Taxpayers Association blog.
Tuesday, January 10, 2006
It occurs to me that I haven't posted this over on the Thayer Taxpayers' Association. I shall do so.
Monday, January 09, 2006
Awright, let's have a clean fight.
Larry Miller's Megaplex theater . . .
. . . doesn't want you to see Brokeback Mountain.
But he's more than willing to show you a tale of "interspecies romance," a fun romp with married robbers, a dude who gets in on with grandma's sewing circle, "the darkest, sickest recess of human nature itself," a geisha and her anonymous patron, a pro-terrorist Spielberg piece, a pro-failure piece, and a film that ridicules the retarded.
But a flick with kissing cowboys is too much?
Larry Miller also owns the Utah Jazz (which may explain the pro-failure movie).
The theater chain's email addy is: email@example.com . The phone number for this particular theater is: (801) 304-4577.
There is a "contact" button in the upper righthand corner of the website for the Larry H. Miller Group.
Seatbelt traps woman in sinking car.
What, he's toilet paper now?
Caption seen on CNN: Abramoff Pleads Quilty. No reference to it online, but it was there. I saw it. And it was a capital Q, so there's no mistaking it for a G.
And a quick newsgoogle of "Plead Quilty" reveals ABC and the WaPo are in on the action too.
But Speaking Of Toilet Paper, it's good to see Charmin reaching out to a certain subset of the gay community. Although, I'm thinking their narrowcasting is a little too narrow on the second one.
And when does the toiletpaper for bear tops come out?
[Hat tip to NathanKing on Flickr for the first one.]
Saturday, January 07, 2006
Other than the Koltskis,
Day 6 and counting. . .
They're still there.
What, are the Thayer city employees waiting for the river to rise and wash the corpses away? Are they hoping scavengers will carry them off?
This, apparently, is how things are done in the City of Thayer, Missouri.
Oh, Philip. Oh, Missouri.
Missouri, it seems, is outsourcing the writing of legislation to fifth-graders.
Fifth-graders who think beer should be warm, no less.
State senator Bill Alter, my friends, is a Republican. And an idiot.
Time to put on my Captain Obvious costume.
Jesus did exist, or didn't exist, independently of what an Italian court says about it.
There oughtta be a law . . .
. . . against headlines like this:
Kennedy told: quit by Monday.
But don't get your hopes up. It's not that one.
Will the Charles In Charge movie be next?
How about the Punky Brewster movie? Or the He-Man movie?
Oh, wait. That one's really gonna happen.
Do we really need a He-Man movie?
As if Brokeback Mountain didn't give us our gay fix for a while.
If they're gonna keep rehashing old (bad, forgettable) TV shows into movies, they could at least do it right.
So tell me, Mr. Hollywood Decision Maker, when will Misfits of Science vs. Jason of Star Command come out? And will it have a Wiki vs. Peepo subtext?
Can I at least hope for ElectraWoman and DynaGirl?
Friday, January 06, 2006
What? Wikipedia has no article on eminent domainer John Q. Hammons? We may have to RECTIFY that.
Did anyone hang onto their old copies of The Bear Review so I can factcheck the dates?
Fatwa Patty: God smote Sharon.
Calling all tinfoil-hattish types (of which I am one) . . .
At least Day 5.
Contrary to appearances, what follows in this post is NOT a visual representation of Jewel's music.
It is the face of government bureaucracy.
Oh yeah. They're STILL there. These pictures were taken the day I noticed them. Now add five days of putrification, and you can imagine what they look like now.
This is the face of Thayer Missouri city government.
Thursday, January 05, 2006
Just who, exactly,
is Sharon Gravely the Third?
And why is she after a massive stroke?
What, is there a slot machine in the living room?
Misinterpretable headline of the day:
Parents leave kids home alone to gamble.
Are they playing Texas Hold 'Em in the kitchen?
And if the chidrens is gonna gamble, shouldn't they be supervised?
Flip This City.
Representative Richard H. Baker, a Republican, proposes that wide-scale property flipping is a proper function of the federal government.
Hell, let's make a whole cabinet-level department out of it, shall we? The Department of Property Flippage.
And Donald Trump can be it's secretary.
Someone remind me again why we EVER bought the idea that the Republicans were the party of small government and constitutional constraint.
'Cuz I sure don't find property flipping power being given to the federal government ANYWHERE in the Constitution.
And free bags of weed would reduce potheads' run-ins with police.
And you didn't know that the inflection of "Oh, Canada" should be the same inflection you would use when you scold your retarded brother Philip for dumping lime Jello powder in the toilet.
With their flapping heads and beady eyes.
From this Breitbart article applauding socialized booze for Canadian rummies:
Free drinks may improve the health and lives of homeless alcoholics and reduce their run-ins with police, according to a study published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal.
Oklahoma: If we can't get 'em for sodomy . . .
. . . we'll get them for discussing sodomy.
An executive committee member of the Southern Baptist Convention was arrested on a lewdness charge for propositioning a plainclothes policeman outside a hotel, police said.
That's right. No money was exchanged, not even OFFERED. It was a private discussion.
One has to wonder, if the man had propositioned a woman outside a hotel, would charges have been filed?
How many arrests were made in Tulsa last year for a man propositioning a woman?
I'm betting this won't get as much time in The Situation Room . . .
Defining Pork Down.
SC Democrat defines tax rebate as "pork."
In a news release, State Democratic Party Chairman Joe Erwin said Sanford's spending plan "has so many election-year gimmicks in it that its hard to take seriously. Suddenly, Sanford the tightfisted Libertarian is Sanford the pork-king."
Pork is a taxpayer-funded study of whether a cricket crosses it's legs left-over-right or right-over-left. Pork is a study of owl vomit. Pork is a bridge to nowhere.
Tax cuts, and tax rebates, do not qualify as pork, which is of course, a shortened form of "pork-barrell spending."
My favorite line from the article?
...and $174,175 cut from state support of Special Olympics.
Taxpayer funding of the Special Olympics? Now that's pork.
This Sanford guy may have all the makings of a Randian superhero.
Day 4 (at LEAST).
It is now Thursday, and they're still there.
And apparently, wherever Wal-Mart outsources it's photo development to observes Berchtold's Day, because there is a one-day delay "due to the Holiday."
But back to the skinned corpses in Warm Fork Park.
This provides an excellent opportunity to compare government bureaucracy to private management.
Suppose Warm Fork Park was privately owned/managed. And suppose they charged a small admission fee to the park. How long would it take them to get this cleaned up? The longer the rotting corpses stayed there, the less money they would get, so I HAVE to believe they would find a way clean it up as soon as it was first reported. Even if it was reported on a holiday.
Now, let's take a look at the Warm Fork Park that IS. It is funded by tax dollars, which means that no matter HOW awful the conditions are at the park, and no matter how many people don't use it, they get the same amount of money. Maybe this explains why they still have 17th-century restroom facilities that are cleaned so infrequently that sometimes people would rather take a dump on the floor than on the seat perched above the hole in the ground. (Yes, I've seen the evidence of that actually happening. As I recall, THAT wasn't cleaned up for quite awhile, either.) And maybe that explains why nobody in charge of managing the park has realized that people MIGHT want to wash their hands after using the bathroom. Or that toilet paper occasionally has to be REPLACED.
So, in short, there is no incentive for city employees to remove the rotting corpses.
Such a thing would NEVER happen at Disneyland.
Wednesday, January 04, 2006
Kirk: You left port without a tractor beam?
Harriman: It doesn't arrive until Tuesday.
-from Star Trek: Generations.
That's a running theme in the movie; that the ship's not ready and nothing can be accomplished because the systems, supplies, and people don't arrive until Tuesday.
Sunday, I'm driving home from the grocery store through Warm Fork Park. I notice something out of place lying on the ground between the trash and the bathroom. Something dead.
Not just dead. Skinned. And from that perspective, it looked like it COULD have been a baby.
I stopped the car and jumped out to investigate. It wasn't a baby. It was a bunch of animals. I couldn't readily identify what kind of animals, but the size, shape, and brown fur on their unskinned feet made me think they might have been dogs. There were four of them on the ground, and one in the trash.
Someone had dumped them there. In the park. Where children play. It was extremely gross.
I hopped back in my little car and went to the police station. The dispatcher, a guy I'd guess is in his late fifties or early sixties, was the only one there. "May I help you?" he asked.
"Yeah," I replied. "Someone has skinned some animals and dumped them in the Warm Fork park."
"Oh, those are 'coons," he informed me. "We know about them, but nobody can do anything about cleaning them up until Tuesday."
This was Sunday, mind you. Two problems with waiting until Tuesday come to mind.
1. Children play there. The ghoulish death-grimaces of skinned animals will give them nightmares. And the likelihood that more children than usual would be playing there was a real one, because Thayer schools don't end their Christmas break until midweek.
2. Dead things decay over time. This might not be a big problem if these were normal January temperatures, but with daytime temperatures approaching 60, those things are quickly going to get nasty. It would take five minutes for a city employee to shovel them up and put them in a dumpster somewhere, but by waiting those extra two days, the corpses will turn into a soupy, maggoty, stench-riddled, ten-times-harder-to-clean mess.
But nobody can do anything about it until Tuesday. It was a holiday weekend, and apparently no city employees were on call.
I went home and grabbed my cheap disposable camera and returned to the park, where farther up the walking path I found ANOTHER one. Took about ten pics. Dropped them off at Wally World. The pictures are supposed to be ready tonight. I'll try and get at least SOME of them scanned and post them tomorrow.
This morning . . . this WEDNESDAY morning, mind you, I drove through Warm Fork park. They're still there.
Hey, the dispatcher didn't say WHICH Tuesday.
Maybe I'll blow a couple of them up to billboard size and put on captions such as "Welcome to scenic Warm Fork Park." Or "This is the face of Thayer city government."