Saturday, August 18, 2012

The Journal | Ogdensburg’s Knox Street, Grove Street houses not sold yet

    Two pieces of property in the Maple City are like the tar baby for city officials in Ogdensburg.
    Controversial homes on Knox and Grove Streets are still in city hands months after controversy caused the departure of two top city officials...
    Meanwhile it's about two weeks now since it was announced a city manager hiring was imminent with no follow up coverage.
     Is there a cone of silence over the 'Burg ?
     The Journal | Ogdensburg’s Knox Street, Grove Street houses not sold yet

Florida Lass Hopes Path to DC Runs Through Pearl Street

     A GOP operative from the Sunshine State will be filling in for me Sunday afternoon at Fort Pearl while I attend the Pirate's Weekend Parade in Alexandria Bay. The Doheny campaign seems to think I add some kind of  je ne sais quoi to the candidate's appearance in his hometown parade.

        I told the campaign high command I'd be glad to stop by but I needed coverage at the gin mill, so they are dispatching a just-arrived operative from Tampa who will fill in for me. Her name is Courtney and I was introduced to her last night by the campaign manager.
       A recent Florida State grad, Courtney hopes for a career in politics but its wise to have a backup plan like bartending.
      Courtney has worked similar jobs in Florida at various country clubs and high end spots. 
       Come see Courtney Sunday afternoon at Fort Pearl !

Putin No Pussy....Jails Gals for Hooliganism

      Three Russian women in a band called 'Pussy Riot' have been sentenced to two years in jail for "hooliganism".  The trio protested the regime of President Putin in a Moscow church.
      There are worldwide protests for the jailing.
Russian punk trio Pussy Riot gets two years’ prison, igniting protests worldwide -

Friday, August 17, 2012

Roger Stone: Picked by a Koch Brother, Ryan is Big Government and No Libertarian

   Long time GOP insider Roger Stone gives his read on Paul Ryan....and it's not the conventional MSM take.
Roger Stone: The Stone Zone

2012 Undressed: All Of The Presidential Candidates Shirtless

       If you like to vote based on buffness, here is your article...

Jenna and Paul Ryan
     It appears Rep. Paul Ryan will be the new heart throb at age 42 and into physical fitness.

Police Say Driver Inattention Caused Antwerp Fatal Crash | WWNY TV 7

    So the accident that claimed six lives in Antwerp is just that, an accident....A driver who had an attention lapse, such as we all have at times...Usually there are no consequences, in this case they were profound.
     No alcohol, no drugs, no texting, no fudged logs, no vehicle deficiencies...That seems to be the results of an investigation that will be reviewed by the DA to see if charges will be filed against the truck driver who plowed into a line of vehicles stopped at a construction site.
     The system demands charges....finality...closure...blame....But sometimes tragedy is random and doesn't fit neatly into the model of the criminal justice system.
    It will likely be presented to a grand jury as that provides some cover if they come back with a no bill.....
     No matter what...the driver has to live with the results.....
Feedback: Police Say Driver Inattention Caused Antwerp Fatal Crash | WWNY TV 7 - News, Weather and Sports for | Local News

Bank of Canada bans image of 'Asian-looking' woman from new $100 banknotes

   Stop with the over analyzing....Canada has pulled its new $100 bill because the person pictured appears to be Asian and that offends someone in a focus group.
   The yellow tint to the bill is considered a sign of bigotry towards Orientals and the use of an Asian woman to show the nation's medical innovation typecasts Asians and math and science fields and that's considered prejudiced.
    Go back to Sir John A. and leave it at that.
Bank of Canada bans image of 'Asian-looking' woman from new $100 banknotes

Tom's Salesperson Lands Small But Influential Account

                 Today. I signed up to convert payroll to a Rochester -based provider after a second visit by salesperson Jackie Sedgwick....After a flurry of initials and signings on a screen, I was a customer. Anyway, no more checks to write...All direct deposit for staff and no more scrambling to come up with 941 payments quarterly.
     I signed so many things I may have bought a hundred thousand mile warranty too.
In the Inner Sanctum at Fort Pearl Copying Files
 Rare Access Granted to Jackie    
       Not much planned for the weekend...Just some work at the bar and a next to last weekend dinner at Pete's.

Summer Memories for Kids in East Hills

    Summer is just starting to wrap up and school is around the corner....but it was still a day of summer fun as the Watertown Housing Authority hosted and End of Summer Bash at East Hills with all sorts of games, food and entertainment for residents of the complexes.
                                           Kids play in water slide/splash pool

WDT: Ritchie and Others Rap DC Inaction on a Farm Bill

      Increasingly, Senator Patty Ritchie is following her own path even if doing so puts her in a position of criticising fellow Republicans.
     Ms. Ritchie is rapping the failure in DC to pass a farm bill even though much of the national debate over the issue has centered on the GOP controlled House where Speaker Boehner has declined to allow a vote.
     The Senator like Democratic Governor Andrew Cuomo has been busy chiding Washington for not being able to transcend party labels the way Albany has of late.......
NYS leaders have convinced themselves there is no more dysfunciton on the State Capitol.
     Watertown Daily Times | State officials decry federal inaction on farm bill

WDT: McDougall Ascension Makes News

    Looks like labor activist and political hobbyist Ron McDougall will be the mayor of the Lifesaver Village.
     If the legalities can be worked out, Mr. McDougall will be everyone's choice on the November ballot to fill out the remaining year of former Gouverneur Mayor Chris Miller's term. Mr. Miller resigned this week, but Mr. McDougall, who is on the village board, had been defacto mayor for some time.
      Mr. McDougall is a registered member of the Independence Party, as is the mayor of nearby Watertown.
Watertown Daily Times | McDougall is likely mayoral candidate

Finding Another Gate to Public Awareness Now Commonplace With Local Governments

   While initially a source of aggravation and consternation to some, the use of new media to get out a story or just communicate important information is more and more a part of what mayors and local governments do.
    Across the nation local governments are using Twitter, Facebook and other conduits to keep in touch with constituents.
     For about three years I have used this blog and other means to augment the normal chains of communication to the public.  While "the blog" was criticised by some, it's now just one of many means all sorts of local officials use to stay in touch.
      Mayors like Cory Booker of Newark, NJ and many others regularly use social media to receive complaints and let the public know what they are up to or to acknowledge a situation.
Getting official word out via social media -

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Stripey The Cat Finally Comes Home To Owner

      Water cooler news today on Channel 7 as the cat missing since a High Street apartment house fire three months ago has reappeared.
      Stripey is an eleven year old feline thought to have stayed in the building until its demolition last week when he showed up at a neighbors house.
       Hooray for Stripey !
Stripey The Cat Finally Comes Home To Owner | WWNY TV 7 - News, Weather and Sports for | Local News


   I can tell from the comments, we have a lot of Democrats reading the blog as well as Republicans...That's good..We like the discourse.
    Tonight I went to the Chamber mixer at Davidson Chevrolet...Boy, that's a fancy dealership and the food was great.
     Councilman Butler and I had hoped to meet with the Zoo people this evening about the possible Aviary replacement, but we felt a little like Joseph and Mary...No room at the Inn.
      That nice young lady from Paychex is coming to see me tomorrow about payroll services. My accountant told me to make sure I at least get lunch as she is on expense account....Besides a free lunch on Tom is slight compensation for that weekend in White Plains 14 years ago.

Jackie from PAYCHEX Comes Over Friday to Clinch the Deal
       I got very good service today at Caprara Honda when I took the scooter in for service.   The service writer was especially helpful and deserves a kudo from Billy.
         My good friend and style advisor Kari turned 40 today....In her case forty is the new 25.....
        I stopped at Parks and Rec today and saw Amy Poehler.

Governor Cuomo Reduces Size of Government by Signing Bills to Eliminate More Than 120 Inactive Local Authorities and Agencies | Governor Andrew M. Cuomo

   The Watertown Urban Renewal Agency and 119 other inactive or defunct public authorities have been swepted from the books under a law signed this week by Governor Cuomo....
    That's a good start.
Governor Cuomo Reduces Size of Government by Signing Bills to Eliminate More Than 120 Inactive Local Authorities and Agencies | Governor Andrew M. Cuomo

Schelleng Honored in Franklin Building

      Two downtown development organizations teamed up this morning to honor the memory of Doug Schelleng, the former head of the Watertown Trust who died in a car crash on the very morning he was to attend the dedication of the Franklin Building, the renovation of which he spearheaded.

WDT: Old Buildings....Slow going

   The Times opines about the slow going on two downtown buildings still vacant and still on the slide to decay.
    One is the Woolworth Building, where owners have a revised plan for rehabilitation. The other is the Masonic Temple, where Times brass look out their office window every day to check on the pieces of cornice that have fallen.
    The situation with the two buildings is not the same, but the end result could be. The price tag is about the same as well.
     The prospects for the Woolworth Building are better with the owner securing a new development team and state aid already in place. It's still a very tenuous situation.
     The Masonic is one of those buildings you can take the tour every week...conclude it's an interesting structure.....and leave without a clue about any reuse.
Watertown Daily Times | Slow going

Owens: Invite Me To Your Small Business

       The plight of small business is big business in the campaign for Congress, and Rep. Bill Owens says he wants to visit your enterprise.  Just fill out a form on Mr. Owens website and he might just be stopping by.
         So far in this campaign both candidates have been opposing a minimum wage hike on the grounds the increase will hurt small business. Mr. Owen's foe, Matt Doheny, did a fifty businesses in fifty days tour.
          The recent ruckus over President Obama's remark about who built small businesses has sensitized candidates to the rough and tumble world of trying to make it on your own.
          Candidates are always welcome on Pearl Street, especially if they bring a posse of parched operatives.
Invite Bill To Your Small Business | U.S. Congressman Bill Owens

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Candidates and Media Need to Deliver for Voters Denied Comprehensive Coverage of Congressional Race

       Watertown could be the center of the NNY political universe if both candidates for Congress agree to participate in the proposed October 25 debate at JCC and hosted by YNN.
     The prospect of a live debate and a live audience less than two weeks before the election is exciting and a chance to talk about the issues important to this region, including the future of Fort Drum and various border issues.
Let the Big Guns from YNN Carry the Big Debate in NY 21
     On top of that there is the prospect of YNN's Liz Benjamin venturing away from the Thruway to host the debate.
      So far Republican Matt Doheny, as the challenger, wants high profile debates in the three major media markets in the 21st CD. Clearly, an incumbent like Rep. Bill Owens would want obscure debates, tape delayed and without studio audiences.
      Team Doheny claims the Congressman will not agree to the JCC/YNN format, instead wanting a more discreet joint appearance on the local PBS station. Well, I don't know about that, but it would make sense if you are running out the clock in a race you think you are leading.
       Starting in September we will see the barage of commercials, but its time NNY moved into the real world by staging and covering joint forums.
       The event at JCC, and two other events in Plattsburgh and Queensbury, would be  seminal moments for the candidates and voters....
        We don't need the equivalent of debates in Fine, NY.   Oh, and by the way, let the Green candidate in as well.
         Democracy should not be confined to those who can afford TV spots, direct mail and display ads on the news websites.

Romney: No more Obama’s a Mr. Nice Guy

  Politics is not bean bag and it's getting heated between President Obama and Governor Romney.
   This race is like lancing a boil and the resulting puss is acrid. That's great as so far its been one sided with Mitt Romney calling the President a "nice guy" even though he may not be.
     Let the fighting escalate.
Romney: No more Obama’s a Mr. Nice Guy - Reid J. Epstein -

Team Liz to Host Watertown Congressional Debate

   My friends at WWNY and WPBS are going to hate me for saying this....but why is the Congressional debate being held in Watertown being sponsored by YNN ?
Doheny Accepts Three Debates | Doheny for Congress

YNN: Mayor Couldn't Find a Lifesaver in Gouverneur

     Labor activist Ron McDougal is now acting mayor of the Village of Gouverneur following the unexpected resignation of Mayor Christopher Miller after just nine months in office.
    Mayor Miller told YNN he is leaving the area and was honored to serve. the Hizzoner of Lifesaver town leaves behind a controversial past.
    He is reportedly bordering on bankruptcy, owes lots of taxes, and had previous criminal convictions. He was elected anyway because people in the Village were unhappy with Mayor Dorothy Vorce and frankly people of vision and virtue are not attracted to chief elected office positions that offer more grief than compensation....
     Very often you do indeed get what you pay for.
      Best wishes to the Mayor who showed us all the state of elected office in NNY.
      As for Mr. McDougal, he gained office by appointment to a vacant board seat and then got named deputy mayor. He is the hubby of former Mayor and Assemblywoman Diedre Scozzafava.

Gouverneur mayor resigns - YNN, Your News Now

Getting Ready for Season Opener Against the Bills

   The bad news about being one of the few JETS fans is the beer companies don't have a lot of POS for them...The good news is what little there is, I have an inside track on.
    So when Eagle Beverage got two JETS Bud Light neons, my good friend Bob LeFevre made sure I got one of them.
     There are also some new Saranac brews coming out for the fall including a Black and Tan and a Pumpkin Ale. Hopefully we can get Saranac's Meghan back up to Watertown this fall to visit the bars that carry this fine upstate product.

Congressional hopefuls agree: Don’t raise minimum wage - AdirondackDailyEnterprise

    There's not a dime's worth of difference between North Country Congressional candidates on the issue of minimum wage hikes....Both Matt Doheny and Rep. Bill Owens say they oppose it.
     I suspect Mr Doheny's opposition is more steadfast, but they both say they oppose it nonetheless.
     Mr. Owens likely feels he can't be seen as too much of a progressive in NNY where love of Democrats is still a newfound emotion.
      For Mr. Owens the strategy is not to roil the waters by drawing distinctions on controversial issues like minimum wage or Obamacare.
     He wants the race to be on image. Doheny wants it to be on ideology.....
Congressional hopefuls agree: Don’t raise minimum wage - | News, Sports, Jobs, Saranac Lake region — Adirondack Daily Enterprise

WDT: Woman want her parents’ belongings: ‘It’s my family’s heritage’

   Here is the unusual story of the Seymour Street house frozen in time for 22 years after the children of a Watertown man who died decided to leave everything in its place in honor of their late parents.
    For years one sister held title and paid the taxes along with late fees and surcharges when the City would have to cut the grass. Neighbors were frustrated watching the bizarre situation continue as the exterior of the house deteriorated.
     Now the sister who had been paying the taxes stopped doing so and the City finally has title...Now another sister from New Mexico is in town and wants the personal effects nobody wanted till now.
     Without a court order, she has no legal claim and to avoid getting in the middle of a family spat, the City asked her to get a judge to sign something.  In the meantime, she has gone to the media with her story.
       On the inside there is a Christmas tree still decorated with gifts under it. The living room looks as it did in 1990.
       This is by any account an unusual situation.
Watertown Daily Times | Woman want her parents’ belongings: ‘It’s my family’s heritage’

Campaigns to Center About at Best a Couple or Three Million People Who Vote, Are Persuadable...and Live in the Right Place

        The largest number of people 18 and older this November will not vote for Barack Obama or Mitt Romney....They won't be voting at all...90 million of them.
         That's the estimate of the number of Americans who will sit on the sidelines, but a survey of those people show they prefer the President by a two to one margin.
         There are many reasons people don't vote, but it doesn't matter.
          You can see why turnout models, voter suppression, and appealing to the base are so important.
           Everybody talks about wanting more turnout...Having run for office, I know I want people to turn out who will vote for me. I know that how matter how well I do, the vast majority of adults will have not voted for me, simply because they don't vote at all.
            When you take out the forty states not in play and leave out those in the remaining ten states who either won't vote or are locked in to one candidate, all the money are rhetoric this year is really directed at a very small number of people who are willing to vote....who are persuadable....and who live in a swing state.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

WDT: And in This Corner....Robo Call !

   And on the other side, the Dems are hard at work on a "medi-scare" phone campaign against Matt Doheny.
    It's a long 12 weeks ahead as the hangers-on try to hang on and the upstarts try to take charge and change the unchangeable.....
     Big yawn....
Watertown Daily Times | Dems to robo Doheny on Medicare

Doheny: Owens is a Shill for Labor Bosses

    Perhaps emboldened by the increasingly clear choice in the race for the White House, local Congressional candidate Matt Doheny is doing something his GOP predecessors wouldn't do.....That is take on Big Labor.
     In the past, Republican pols have descended the stairs into the basement of the former Clearview Restaurant in Gouverneur to seek and usually get the endorsement of the labor bosses assembled.
     Perhaps knowing he is too much of a free marketeer for the Ron McDougal crowd, Mr. Doheny issued a broadside today, claiming Labor has bought and paid for Rep. Bill Owens with over a half million dollars in contributions.
      It's risky because so much of the local economy is built on public employees. Of course, just because you are in a union doesn't mean you are oblivious to the looming economic calamity caused by high debt and deficits.      
Labor Leaders Own Owens | Doheny for Congress

The Mayor's Day So Far

      Next Wednesday (August 22) the City and the Chamber host the kind of event we want to see more of. An outdoor movie will be offered free of charge as the Dr. Seuss flick The Lorax is shown on a 25 foot screen.
    A complaint from the Downtown Business Association over parade routes obstructing traffic flow will get a hearing at City Hall.  I have asked the manager to see if there are ways cross-town traffic could be facilitated, particularly during a weekday event like the Dairy Parade.
      A house the city took for taxes on Seymour Street is becoming a source of controversy as a relative of the folks who lived there till their death over 20 years ago wants to retrieve personal effects she says have been in there for two decades.  It's a bizarre tale and since the woman is taking here story to the media, we will surely read more soon.
       This Thursday a plaque will be dedicated at the Franklin Building for the late Doug Schelleng, who spearheaded the renovation project before his death in a car wreck the morning the building was dedicated.

         I am planning to attend a Zoo Board meeting Thursday to answer questions about the City's intent with replacement of the Aviary which has been the subject of much conversation of late.

Politico: Nervous Nellies....GOP pros fret over Paul Ryan

   The political operatives and insiders who make their living off helping candidates live the dream regardless of prospects, are busy telling that the Paul Ryan choice is death on GOP chances for the fall, both up and down the ballot.
    Of course, this story is full of "on background" , not for attribution quotes.  Nobody wants candor to get in the way of earning a living.
     The premise is Mr. Ryan brings a discussion of Medicare into the mix and that's a third rail for Republicans who like to talk fiscal restraint before listing all the programs they will be protecting.
     I disagree. If Paul Ryan's role is to be the authoritative truth teller about our current finances, and he can articulate that in a congenial and constructive manner, then his selection will sell in times when just maybe there are 51% of the people who want to hear the truth.
GOP pros fret over Paul Ryan - Alexander Burns and Maggie Haberman and Jonathan Martin -

No American Graffiti Moments for Today's Generation as Teen Driving is Restricted

     Society continues to try and micromanage all risk and adversity out of life and banning teenage double dates is the latest. Because teenage car crashes are more frequent than adults, states are placing more restrictions on teen drivers, including not allowing other teen passengers.
     All of this is tough to enforce, but how about an easier method ?
     Ban licensing until age 21. Then by definition there will be no teen drivers.
Teenage Driving Laws Stiffened in Many States -

Social Security in Its Golden Years at 77

    Social Security turns 77 today and the Depression era social contract is still alive although a new generation of Americans is skeptical about its long term prospects.
    Younger people with a retirement horizon a ways away routinely will say they don't expect SS to be around for their future...Perhaps a gallows humor, but not a sentiment I heard when in my 20s and 30s.
      Of course, for those approaching retirement, Social Security is still very much a part of their plans.
       This year's election will very much be about the sustainability of programs taken for granted.
Richard (RJ) Eskow: Happy Birthday, Social Security! Now About Your Gift ...

WDT: Summer Sun Drive Scooter Sales

      A warm summer and the crushing cost of gas for in-city driving has spurred a surge in sales of scooters and small motorcycles.
Scooters Like the Yamaha Zuma 125 cc Provide Alternative to Using the Car in Summer
       The two wheelers are affordable but in short supply world wide as many people are turning to this means of urban transport to get the 60 to 90 mpg compared to the ten or twelve most cars and SUV's get on short trips in town.
       Bikes over 50cc in engine size require a motorcycle license, while the smaller 49cc models do not, although their top speeds are in the 30mph range depending on the weight of the driver.
        It's a way to go green and have some fun for those not inclined to buy a windmill.
Watertown Daily Times | Summer sun drives scooter sales

Monday, August 13, 2012

Council Hears Woodruff Proposal and Other Matters

    City Council heard the latest incarnation for renovating the historic Woolworth Building in downtown Watertown....However, developer David Gallo and two collegues did not press the Council for action on the bus stop, PILOTS or parking, instead telling lawmakers they have more work to see if the plan is able to be financed.
    A previous plan by the building owner to put a hotel there fell apart and a plan for 45 to 50 apartments was hatched.
    Mr. Gallo will be getting back to Council with more details.
    Lawmakers also kissed and made up with their ad hoc advisory group called Advantage Watertown.
    Some on Council had complained the group, which meets monthly, was a rogue panel at odds with the job of lawmakers.
    I argued  the group was stakeholders in downtown who were trying to air their ideas in a monthly skull session and meant no harm...In the end everybody held hands and sang a boisterious chorus of Kumbaya.
    Finally, Downtown Business Association President Steve Weed asked Council to reconsider parade routes, particularly moving away from Washington Street and back to State Street.
      Mr. Weed says the Washington route unduly cut off large sections of the City. 
       At least two lawmakers were sympathetic with Teresa Macaluso saying she had a hard time gettting home during the recent Dairy Parade....
      Easy solution...park your car and enjoy the parade.
      Council also decided to hold off on removing the Zoo Aviary until plans are firm for a replacement building. Discussions are proceeding on that. Council also asked for a cost estimate on an access port to downtown caves.

Billy To Open Area's First Fiat Dealership

   The new Fiats available at FX Caprara's new dealership range in size down to the very cutely named Panda, a tiny urban vehicle.

Fiat Panda - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Costco shoppers demand U.S. citizen-only opening hours after getting fed up with Canadians crossing border | Mail Online

   What a bad idea...people seeking to restrict Canadians from shopping on the US side of the border because the lines in stores are too long....
    Costco customers in Washington State reportedly want Americans only shopping hours.
The Canadians are taking advantage of a weak US dollar, but for border areas its a boom amidst an overall sluggish US economy.

      Come on over...we appreciate the opportunity to do some business.
Costco shoppers demand U.S. citizen-only opening hours after getting fed up with Canadians crossing border | Mail Online

WDT: Massena Snake Still Troubling Small Dog Owners

     While the snake on the mid-way in Watertown last month appears now to be a hoax, folks in Massena are still on edge about their their slithering interloper thought to be moving about the village.
       There has been another spotting, and residents tell the Times they are on edge over the purported five foot reptile said to be on the loose.
       All those cameras on poles offer no solace from this kind of threat. The inability of authorities to deal with a snake makes you wonder.
Watertown Daily Times | Massena snake still apparently at large

The Who, Spice Girls not enough to save a Jessie J-Centric Closing Olympics Ceremony : Blogs

    The job of critics is to criticize and I am sure the Olympics closing ceremonies could have done this or that to be better, but I thought it was an entertaining show with lots of celebration of the wide range of British pop music we have all enjoyed.
     Sure there was no Elton John, and the Russell Brand cover of 'I Am the Walrus' was lacking...but by an large it was good theatrics and great music.
                                   Funny Hats Featured in Pet Shop Boys Revival

When You Can't Say Anything Nice....Just Say He's a Family Man

     President Obama used what has become the most patronizing line in politics, referring to Rep. Paul Ryan as a "good family man".   Republicans use the same line for the President when they feel obliged to say something nice.
     This is going to be a sharp elbows under the basket campaign as I suspect there is a visceral dislike and contempt for one another. That should make it interesting.
Obama criticizes Romney vice-presidential pick Paul Ryan -

Medicare to take central role in House races | Democrat and Chronicle

      In the next 80 or so days you will hear more about Medicare than you have heard in a lifetime.
      The selection of Rep. Paul Ryan as the GOP VP candidate will be the culprit as Mr. Ryan's comprehensive proposals on the federal budget include changes to the fifty year old health plan for seniors.
       While the national debate will be over the choice of how to deal with the deficit, the issue will be especially acute in those Congressional districts with competitive races.
       That includes up in NNY, where I am sure the attacks will begin soon.
Medicare to take central role in House races | Democrat and Chronicle |

WDT: Developer to update council about Woolworth Building

      While downtown has made strides in recent decades, one high profile challenge has been the Woolworth Building.  City Council will get an update on efforts to finance its redevelopment which may include relocating the bus station on Arcade Street.

      This is the first work session since the new city manager assumed her duties on July 16.
Watertown Daily Times | Developer to update council about Woolworth Building

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Spice Girls wow at Olympics closing ceremony

   There is nothing as gratifying as being a "retired" group of pop divas from two decades ago and being brought back to perform in front of one billion people at the closing ceremonies for the Olympics.
     So it was for the Spice Girls....Five Strong and a big hit, along with many other British pop groups.
      The Who, Queen, Jessie J, George Michael....lots of others...It was a great show.
Spice Girls wow at Olympics closing ceremony and Boris Johnson gets his groove on | Mail Online

Paul Ryan Drove The Oscar Mayer Weinermobile

   This will be manna from Heaven for Middle Class Mike and Danny.....It turns out GOP VP candidate Paul Ryan once was the driver for the Oscar Meyer "Weinermobile".....This is clearly an example of corporate shilling for a company that will stuff anything into a casing to create what is euphemistically called a "hot dog".
     This weinermobile story will be the nail in the coffin for Mitt Romney...nobody wants such a person to be a heart beat away.   Or do they ?
Paul Ryan Drove The Oscar Mayer Weinermobile | Mediaite

Looks Like a Good Show from London

    It's 5PM and I am cheating NBC by watching the closing ceremonies of the Olympics on CJOH.  It's a great musical tribute to British pop, but too bad its in regular TV as channel 13 is not on Time Warner hi-def....
    I assume Canadians have such technology.
    Anyway, I can watch it again later on NBC.

Where's T-PACC ?

   With cigarettes now at eleven bucks a pack in the law abiding stores, it's amazing to know you can buy a bag of two hundred filter butts for just $7.50 and no sales tax.
Bag 'O Butts
   Now that's the equivalent of 75 cents a pack...And these don't have the additive to make them go out, but they do have the cancer warning label.
    There's no limit on the number of bags you can buy at Akwasasne...Just the chance of getting caught...But I am told if you have a poker face, you can run the gauntlet of cops and cameras between here and the Res.

"Not for Profits" are Profitable for Those Running Them

   Often I hear it said that fees should be waived or regulations overlooked for the "not for profits."  Everytime I see a not-for-profit though, it has a six figure executive director like in this NY Post story about the head of a Brooklyn agency who is paid nearly $700 K a year in salary and benefits to run a center for autistic children.
       The so called "not for profits" under the tax code may indeed perform laudable functions, but there name is a misnomer that leads you to believe they are home for the austere doing good deads like the Salvation Army or Mother Teresa.
        EXCLUSIVE: Painter gets $700,000 a year, with six weeks’ vacation, as nonprofit head -

WDT: Gouverneur mayor will file for bankruptcy

     More bad press for the mayor of Gouverneur, the sleepy SLC village with the giant Lifesaver perched in its downtown public square.
     Mayor Christopher Miller is struggling with a string of financial woes with back taxes and properties being foreclosed on.
      I wouldn't seem he would have the traction to get reelected, but since few people want to run for these offices, anything is possible.
     Look for current deputy mayor and labor poobah Ron McDougal to seek the office. As the hubby of the former Assemblywoman and a longtime political player, he would seem a logical candidates for the easy pickings the mayor's office will be in the next election.
    Most recently, the deputy mayor made an appointment as provisional police chief and has filled in doing other duties.
    The mayor is the chief administrative person in village government and earns about $7,000 a year. 
     Watertown Daily Times | Gouverneur mayor will file for bankruptcy

Post Standard: Family Guy Selling Misery Across Upstate

   The Post Standard has done some great follow up and detailed the fascinating and audacious story of John Tebbetts, who owns numerous upstate head shops, including one in Watertown.
    The stores became the focus of federal raids recently due to sale of synthetic drugs known as "bath salts" and "window cleaner".
John Tebbetts III in 2009 Mug Shot
     Mr. Tebbetts is 32 years old and he and his businesses have the look of mainstream while peddling a product critics say is very dangerous.
     This story is an interesting read and tells 'the rest of the story' on just how someone who on the surface was a loser bouncing along at the edge of the law became very successful.
      He has six children and apparently is considered a good parent by those who know him.
      In politics, we'd call him a 'family man'.

Upstate's Donald Trump of synthetic drugs hauls in the cash as authorities move in |

Janna Ryan: Wisconsin full-time mom thrust into the vice presidential spotlight: The woman who gave up career as lawyer to marry Paul Ryan.. but is family ready for glare of national media? | Mail Online

    Rep. Paul Ryan doesn't have to go far to chat about tax law....His wife Janna was a high powered tax attorney before she married the Congressman and they had three children.
    Mrs. Ryan is a graduate of Wellesley College and George Washington University Law School.

Janna Ryan: Wisconsin full-time mom thrust into the vice presidential spotlight: The woman who gave up career as lawyer to marry Paul Ryan.. but is family ready for glare of national media? | Mail Online

Will Ryan Pick Help Down-Ballot Democrats?

   Sometimes with elections, you can analyze too much....but since that's what we do, here is a Liz piece musing on whether the selection of Paul Ryan as the GOP VP candidate will hurt Republican candidates down ballot in races like Congress.
      The presumption is Mr. Ryan will not play well in RINO NY and may aid slightly those marginal Democratic candidates like Rep. Kathy Hochul in western NY and Rep. Bill Owens in NNY.

      In NNY, the Doheny campaign claims Mitt Romney is poised to carry the 21st CD. I don't think the Ryan selection changes that since most don't vote for VEEP and if anything Mr. Ryan might take the rich guy image off the GOP ticket.
      If as it happened four years ago, Barack Obama wins NNY, it will be difficult to win a close Congressional race, but if that happens, I don't think you can pin it on the selection of Mr. Ryan.

Will Ryan Pick Help Down-Ballot Democrats?

Team Obama Readies the Slime to Knock Ryan Down a Peg

     The race is on to define Paul Ryan, with Democrats scrambling to portray him as a sop for the rich and a destroyer of the social contract. Republicans say he is a courageous truth teller with real answers to the Nation's vexing fiscal problems.
      Ryan is a career pol, but he is not wealthy in the way others in the race are. Sort of a younger Biden, with more conservative views.
       His real value is he could switch the conversation back to the economy and the deficit and away from tax returns and dancing horses.
        They say he has a way of explaining his views in a non confrontational and understandable way.  That's a quality in short supply.  You mean he really doesn't want to push wheelchairs off a cliff ?
Obama camp video: Get to know Paul Ryan (Updated) -

Stressed-out men prefer a fleshier woman -

   So a stressed out man prefers heavier women ?  Who does this type of research ?
    There are all sorts of rationales and the definition of "fleshy" can certainly vary.
    The subtle difference between Rubenesque and morbidly obese.
    Stressed-out men prefer a fleshier woman -