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Correction: "Beasts". Not "beats". I'm sure Kerouac isn't Tiger Wood's type. Ginsberg? That's another story.
Well, the blizzard of the century came and went. Events were canceled and/or postponed and on Saturday morning local roads were clogged with people rushing to the store to buy milk and bread as if there would be no further deliveries until May. But come on folks, living in suburbia as we do you know the plows will be out and the roads generally cleared within 6 hours of the end of a storm and that even if you have to wait a little longer you won't starve. Honest.
The Journal News reported yesterday morning:
"The National Weather Service expected about 17 inches in southern Westchester, 9 in Rockland and 8 in northern Westchester and Putnam."
Local Republican leaders are upset with the namby-pamby middle-of-the-road politics of NRCC selected Nan Hayworth in their attempt to unseat moderate Democrat John Hall. In order to better reflect their homo- and xenophobia they want Greg Ball back in the race.
But why would the part-time Assemblyman from the 99th district walk away from the NY State Senate seat he was gifted by outgoing Senator - and soon to be County Executive - Vincent Leibell? Inquiring minds want to know what kind of deal was made. After all, it affects each and every one of us. You'd think we'd be in on it.
From the "I Swear, I'm Not Making This Up" Department:
Conservapedia is an attempt at gathering the knowledge of the world without the liberal bias that exists in the more formally known Wikipedia. At least that's what they say. Actually, here's what they say:
"Conservapedia is a clean and concise resource for those seeking the truth. We do not allow liberal bias to deceive and distort here."
That liberal bias seemingly extends to the Ten Commandments which Conservapedia credits as being solidly Christian theology. Hebrews/Jews, other than a brief reference to two old testament passages, apparently had nothing to do with them. On the other hand, Conservapedia tells me that there is a direct link between homosexual behavior and illegal drug use, that the recent cold weather proves global warming is a myth and that Marxists control the UN. They even claim the War of 1812 had little to do with our invasion and Madison's attempted land grab in Canada.
To prove that Conservapedia is non-biased, compare the opening of the articles on President Jimmy Carter first at Conservapedia and then at the left-wing, Stalinist, kum-bah-yah singing, hippie run Wikipedia.
America's greatest ally in the Middle East, Saudi Arabia, home to most of the 9/11 terrorists, has sentenced a 75 year old woman to 40 lashes for being in the company of men she was not related to. The men had gone to her house to collect bread she had baked. Having the men physically near her and she not having a husband she was in violation of Sharia Law. The Obama administration has been silent while millions in military loan guarantees flow from Washington to Riyadh and the oil flows back creating a new definition of the term "blood money".
A NYC Policewoman stopped a man filming at the UN the other day claiming it was Federal property and demanded he turn over his camera. He quite properly refused the request. He asked if he was free to go and if he was being arrested. The policewoman would only say that she had called the secret service and reminded the man that he could not film because of the USA PATRIOT Act. After a nine-minute standoff the man simply walked away.
In the meantime over in Jolly Old England, photojournalist Paul Lewis of the UK Guardian was told by police that he could not film at the base of the architecturally famous "Gherkin" building based on their version of the USA PATRIOT Act, Section 44 of the Terrorism Act. But the police were wrong, as they have been in these cases time and again, and a memo sent by The Association of Chief Police Officers to every officer and department a couple of weeks ago has reminded them that photography is not a crime yet the harassment still goes on... on both shores.
Each minute we're stuck in Afghanistan costs you $57,000.
For the same money we could:
It is that week of the year that strikes either terror - or joy - into the hearts of people everywhere. Try these cookies I brought to the annual winter Solstice party at the Allen's in Put Valley yesterday. Bake 'em up and enjoy!
1 cup flour
And now, The News:
“The PACE loan program will provide more than access to critical federal funds, it will enable us to pursue the clean energy goals that are better for our environment and a boost to our economy,” Governor Paterson said. “New York has significantly expanded energy efficiency incentive programs, like my ‘45 by 15’ clean energy initiative, that help residents and businesses reduce their energy costs. Now, thanks to the leadership of the Obama administration and Congressman Israel, the federal government is supporting such measures through the PACE loan program. To ensure that New York’s ability to tap into this federal funding, we needed to pass this legislation, which authorizes municipalities to administer PACE loan programs. I am pleased to sign this bill into law and thank my partners in government for their work on this issue.”
More disturbing news as USA Today continues its exposé on the abysmal state of school lunches. The headline of its most recent article: 26,500 school cafeterias are not properly inspected, leaving U.S. children susceptible to foodborne disease pathogens, such as norovirus. That's roughly 30 percent of schools in the U.S.
The National School Lunch Program mandates that school cafeterias, which serve 31 million students nationwide, be inspected twice during a school year to make sure their facilities and storage practices are up to snuff. The USDA, according to the piece, admits its "the rule is almost impossible to enforce." That's because the language of the law requires that states report how many of their schools are failing—and not which ones are the health hazards.
A new piece by Arne Duncan,(PDF) the United States Education Secretary, starts out fairly predictably: He praises the fine, difficult work teachers do, repeats the sentiment that they "deserve" better pay, top-notch training and more respect, and so on. Then he asks the predictable follow-up question: Why don't teachers get the respect, admiration, and compensation they are owed? Then the piece gets interesting.
He proposes that part of the problem is that the whole system is stuck in the "factory model of the industrial age. Students, in classrooms that look uncannily like the classrooms a century ago, move through 13 years of schooling beginning at age five, attending school 180 days a year, and taking five subjects a day in timed periods similar to what the Carnegie Foundation recommended in 1910."
Dec. 17 (Bloomberg) -- Homeowners with mortgages of more than $1 million are defaulting at almost twice the U.S. rate and some are turning to so-called short sales to unload properties as stock-market losses and pay cuts squeeze wealthy borrowers.
“The rich aren’t as rich as they used to be,” said Alex Rodriguez, a Miami real estate agent with JM Group USA Inc., whose listings include a $2.9 million property marketed as a short sale because the price is less than the mortgage, leaving the bank with a loss. “People have reached the point where they can’t afford the carrying expenses of a $2 million home.”
Payments on about 12 percent of mortgages exceeding $1 million were 90 days or more overdue in September, compared with 6.3 percent on loans less than $250,000 and 7.4 percent on all U.S. mortgages, according to data from First American CoreLogic Inc., a Santa Ana, California-based research firm. The rate for mortgages above $1 million was 4.7 percent a year earlier.
Carry-on baggage rules will be relaxed under a shake-up of aviation security announced by the Federal Government today.
The changes will see passengers again allowed to carry some sharp implements, such as nail files and clippers, umbrellas, crochet and knitting needles on board aircraft from July next year.
Metal cutlery will return to return to cabin meals and airport restaurants following Government recognition that security arrangements must be targeted at 'real risks'.
The measures are contained in the Government's Aviation White Paper released today, a blueprint for aviation in Australia, covering security, safety, economics, consumer protections, consultation over noise and urban growth, greenhouse gas emissions, and issues of staff training and access for remote and regional services.
Posted on December 17, 2009, Printed on December 18, 2009
WASHINGTON -- Reflecting on the growing divide between Wall Street and Main Street, Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) on Wednesday offered a powerful critique on the state of the economy in an open committee hearing.
"The class warfare is over -- we lost," Kucinich said before the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform. "I want to make that announcement today. Working people lost. The middle class lost."
The harrowing comments from Kucinich, who is Chairman of the Domestic Policy Subcommittee, come amidst a national unemployment rate of 10 percent, one year and several months after the economic collapse of 2008 has marred the livelihoods of many.
"Don't tell me about class warfare," he continued. "Come to my neighborhoods in Cleveland. I will show you class warfare. I’ll show you hollowed out areas. I’ll show you businesses that went down because they don’t have access to capital. And on Wall Street it is fat city. Don’t tell me about class warfare."
By Carmen K. Sisson Correspondent
Tuscaloosa, Ala. — Every good Southerner knows there are only two religions in Alabama – football and football. This week, a new maxim emerged: When it comes to the state judicial system, there’s a lot of crimson hiding beneath those billowing black robes.
Circuit Judge Dan King announced Wednesday he would grant a delay in the civil suit Traywick v. Energen Corporation, which was scheduled for trial Jan. 4 in Bessemer, Ala., a suburb of Birmingham.
Energen’s defense attorneys want to attend the showdown between the University of Alabama and University of Texas at Austin, scheduled for Jan. 7 at the Rose Bowl. If Alabama wins, it will be the first time in 17 years that they’ve claimed the Bowl Championship Series national title, considered by many to be the apogee of college football achievement.
“Such an event only comes infrequently during a person’s lifetime and is an achievement of such a magnitude that all involved in this litigation should want everyone to fully participate in this achievement,” writes Jon Terry, attorney for Energen, in his nine-point motion for a delay.
Because so many lawyers, jurors, and witnesses are planning to travel to Pasadena, Calif., for the game, it would be a hardship, he says. February would be better. Much better.
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