Saturday, January 12, 2013

Council Work Session to Feature Three Items

      Monday, City Council will get the proposed plan and cost for the replacement structure for the Aviary in the Thompson Park Zoo.
      The covered pavillion is supposed to provide a better venue for educational and other activities at the Zoo and has gone through several itterations since 2010 when Council wanted to make something of the existing structure.
       Last year Council agreed to a covered pavillion as a replacement. The proposal is the result of input from users and Council will decide whether to send it our to bid in time to get the darn thing in place by summer.
        Council will surely reject at Monday's work session a proposal to place an electric car charging station on City property. Aside from the economics of it, there is real doubt it's even legal under the State Constitution to just give away electricity to a chosen group.
      Lawmakers will also discuss a proposed human resources position.

What Do You Read and What Do You Do All Day ?

   The other day at a meeting of Advantage Watertown (a public think tank on community issues) I pointed out that voluminous applications for funding and lengthy master plans on economic development are often approved by public bodies but never read.
    A pillar of the community churlishly asked me, just what it is I do read.  Caught off guard at a public session I retreated to the political answer and since the publisher of the local paper was there I reflexively barked, 'why I read John's paper'.
    However, its a question of great import and I will strive to answer.
    I read a lot on-line and the only hard copy paper I ever buy is the NY Post, as I like the format and attitude.
At the Crystal Restaurant on a Saturday Morning

     I read Newzjunky and by extension the publications it links to. I read the on-line WDT, and I read Liz Benjamin's blog as I find it the best summary of Albany nonsense.
     Whenever I hear a word or subject I am not familiar with, I Google it, as I don't like being stumped. As a kid I read the family encyclopedias and almanacs, but those have gone the way of cursive writing.
      I like some liberals and read Maureen Dowd and used to read Frank Rich when he was with the Times. I also like a Krauthammer or a Will now and then.
       Needless to say I listen to a lot of talking head television and radio.
       Of the paper that crosses my desk at City Hall, I pick and choose. I looked through a recent summary of legislation affecting local government and asked questions of staff on things I was interested in. Other things, you just can't take time to read it all.
       The sheer volume of stuff means who have to be either a good scanner or rely on staff accounts. I often appreciation my collegues on Council having interest in some things I don't, and vice versa.
        I engage in a lot of issue-oriented conversation whether on the radio...or at Pete's or just talking to customers at the Pearl Street Pub.
       I support funding for libraries although I haven't signed out a book in some time....
       So to answer the question of what do I read and what do I do all day.
       Well, I try to keep up and am always open to viewpoints.
        Save a couple other guys in town (Wright and Bartow), I am probably the most knowledgeable on political and government issues, and am always striving to be more conversant in sports as its good to be one of the guys at times.
        Just try to do my best with the gifts God gave me.

Sir John A. Macdonald Statue Vandalized

    The defacing of a statue of Canada's first prime minister is an apparent political act on the 198th birthday of Sir. John A. McDonald.
     The statue in Kingston, a large city just a short distance from us, was splattered with red paint and the words "murderer" and "colonizer".

      Our sympathies to the people of Kingston who are proud of their city's heritage and don't deserve this kind of crass act.
Sir John A. Macdonald statue vandalized in Kingston -

Anyone Can Be a Star These Days

    Soooooo, these people who have their pictures given to the press with the 'have you seen this person' headline...What are they guilty of ? We presume its shoplifting as these are clearly from store security cameras.

    These folks are not arrested or convicted, but clearly are labled as criminals by virtue of the release of the phone and the request.
    These are today's 'wanted posters' without the crime listed. The wording may prevent any claim of besmirchment, but it's clear someone considers these people criminals.
      I wonder about the potential for abuse, or careless error in the quest to fill space on reality shows and blogs.

World Reacts to Kate Middleton Portrait: ‘Lifeless,’ ‘Dull,’ ‘Ghastly’ - ABC News

     On to the latest faux controversy...Award Winning (we say that without knowing the specific honors) artist Paul Emsley has unveiled the first ever official portrait of Princess Kate. 
     In a world with so many photos, a portrait may be as out of date as cursive writing, but this one has been panned as it didn't buttress the narrative that the Princess is drop dead gorgeous.
      However, a portrait that looks like a photograph is hardly worth the time at the easel.  
World Reacts to Kate Middleton Portrait: ‘Lifeless,’ ‘Dull,’ ‘Ghastly’ - ABC News

Indiana Senator Wants Cursive Writing Back in Schools

   The chuckle we got over a cabinet nominee's signature brings to mind one of those things that if you are out of school for decades, you don't realize the changes made.....
   Cursive writing is out of favor these days, although a press-release seeking Indiana lawmaker has introduced a law to require its teaching in the Hoosier State.
    It's hard to imagine not having to make use that specially lined paper to form letters....And how about the grade for penmanship.
     I got poor grades for that, causing simmering anxieties that linger to this day.
     Is cursive still taught locally ?
Indiana senator renews effort to return cursive writing to schools | Lifestyles | Detroit Free Press |

WDT: Fort Drum soldier’s arrest for mutilating cat one of many issues ignored by unit, wife alleges

     Not that he would, but if the alleged cat mutilator went on to start shooting people in a theater, it would be another of those hand wringing cases about warning signs of mental illness or omminous behavior.
      But if he never did anything more, it would just be another domestic dispute. 
      Is this a person with a propensity to violence and an indifference to suffering caused by three deployments to Afghanistan, or is it just a high strung, overly testosterone-laden male who got a little out of hand ?
        In a subtext of the gun debate, the media describers the mutilator as a sniper by trade.
       And what of all these requests by the wife for employer intervention ?
       If something bad ever happened involving this person, there would be ample fodder for recriminations about why the signs were overlooked....But the signs are not always actionable until a law is broken.
      That has happened here, We will never know if anything was ever done in this case, because it's a personel matter and it involves medical records.

Watertown Daily Times | Fort Drum soldier’s arrest for mutilating cat one of many issues ignored by unit, wife alleges

Russell, Ritchie Face Off Over 'Mark's Law' | WWNY TV 7

   The 2009 killing of EMT Mark Davis while responding to a medical emergency call continues to be the subject of legislative jockeying as now both our state lawmakers are cranking out press releases on different versions of a law to include first responders under the definition of first degree murder.
    The original "Mark's Law" proposed by Senator Patty Ritchie never passed the Assembly and now Assemblywoman Addie Russell has seized on recent tragedies and controversies to craft her own version of Mark's law.
     The new law adds a new crime for recklessly allowing a firearm to be obtained by a nut, such was what allegedly happened last month in West Webster, NY where two firefighters were ambushed and killed.
      Not missing a story in the news, the Russell proposal also restricts hand gun permit information available on the Internet, presumably a sop to FOX News watching gun owners upset over the publication on line of a map of permit holders in Westchester and Rockland Counties.
      I would propose a bill banning laws named after victims as there are so many of them you can't keep track anymore.
]Russell, Ritchie Face Off Over 'Mark's Law' | WWNY TV 7 - News, Weather and Sports for | Local News

Friday, January 11, 2013

Ouch! No, you’re not imagining it. Your paycheck just shrank. (no kidding MSM !)

   Only now are august media outlets like the Washington Post writing about the news all of you got in your first paycheck of 2013.  Your taxes went up and the woefully uninformed media and political class had been so busy shopping the fiction of a "middle class tax cut" that they forgot to report what was really happening.
    There was no tax cut. The withholding rates have been what they are for a decade and all that was on the table was to keep them the same.....
    Meanwhile another long time tax....the FICA, or Social Security payroll tax, was cut in 2010 from 6.2% to 4.2%.  As an employer and as a businessman. I knew about it and understood its effect on pay checks...However the media didn't and as the rate expired and reverted to 6.2%, the effect was the "middle class tax cut" dutifully reported for weeks was actually a tax hike.
     I know I have discussed this before, but when you see a pillar of journalism only now reporting on this as if its something new, you realize how bereft the news biz is of depth and knowledge....

Ouch! No, you’re not imagining it. Your paycheck just shrank.

“Lion’’ dog on the loose had some people in Norfolk, Va., calling 911 -

       Imagine one of these at the Farmer's Market....A lab-poodle mix groomed to look like the king of beasts panicking crowds in Virginia.
      It's a great hoax and just when you think there's nothing new under the Sun.....
Kudos to the owner and to the groomer !
“Lion’’ dog on the loose had some people in Norfolk, Va., calling 911 -

Time mobbed with criticism for Christie cover -

       New Jersey Governor Chris Christie should not be surprised when TIME magazine used a cover photo that makes him look like the stereotypical Italian mobster from the Garden State...Sort of like Tony Soprano.
       The Governor has cultivated an in-your-face, tough guy persona that lends itself to those comparisons.
        Time mobbed with criticism for Christie cover -

New York Legislators Debate Details of Assault Weapons Ban -

      Governor Cuomo is racing to beat the President in getting a comprehensive gun control law in place and the only sticking point is said to how large a detachable magazine will be allowed for sale to NY gun owners. The Governor wants a seven round clip to be the max, which can be billed as the nation's most stringent law.
Albany Eyes Seven Round Clip Max for Guns

     Mr. Cuomo said Wednesday New Yorkers are fed up with gun crimes and that he values seeing New York as the nation's leader in promoting "progressive" legislation.
     Albany wants the matter resolved quickly and there is likely not enough opposition in the Senate to block the initiatives.
      Yesterday's school shooting in California makes it all the more likely the measure will pass.
New York Legislators Debate Details of Assault Weapons Ban -

WDT: County Catching on to Notion of Political Cover for Albany Pols

   Slowly but surely the state legislators from St. Lawrence County are getting the political cover they need to risk breaking their own no-tax pledges and carry legislation in Albany to hike the county's sales tax by 14%, from 7% to 8%.
     Local governments and even the Chamber of Commerce are begging for the higher tax rate based on a promise by the County to lower the property tax levy over the next five years. Local governments who now get half of the local share of sales tax would end up with a smaller percentage of a bigger pie, but for them that does mean more dollars which makes their budgeting easier.
County Manager Karen St. Hilaire and the County Legislature
Lobby for Higher Taxes

     It's unknown if the Governor will support the local tax hike but if all the local governments are asking for it, I suspect he will.
      For residents of the Big County examining their small paychecks due to the recent federal FICA tax hike, its one more reduction in their family spending power.
      However, higher sales tax cuts evenly across the board, meaning it's a way to spread the tax burden to classes of people paying little or no property tax. In other words, making the poor pay their fair share, if you will.
     What will happen is what happens in Jefferson and all other counties. The extra money allows for a temporary reduction in property tax levies until the new revenue stream is absorbed over the next three or four years. Then the property tax levy will start increasing again.
      If and when it is enacted, the state representitives will be able to say they are doing the will of the people, or at least the will as expressed by local elected bodies.
      Watertown Daily Times | Ogdensburg Council voices support for county tax plan

In a Politically Correct World, Be Careful of Your Old Quotes....Especially Quoting the Old Testament

     What was this minister thinking...Surely he knew a comment he made in the mid-90s about aggresively gay agendas would disqualify Rev. Louis Giglio from being the giver of the benediction at the Obama inauguration.
      Forget that the remark was based on scripture and was consistent with what many were saying in the mid-90s , a period when Mr. Obama himself had yet to evolve to his current positions on gays.
      There is no tolerance among the chronically tolerant for those not adhering to the orthodoxy of secular humanism and political correctness.
Louie Giglio pulls out of inaugural over anti-gay comments

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Letting People Get High is One of New York Governor Andrew Cuomo's Top Priorities in 2013

   It's's not so bad....not fare to bust or imprison....but it's still illegal....
   Don't drink a beer....we're waiting for pot to be legal in NY. 
   It's a, it's harmless.....cops holding up plants for TV news....but its just a show, as the Governor wants it legal....
    And you wonder why no one takes the law seriously....
Letting People Get High is One of New York Governor Andrew Cuomo's Top Priorities in 2013

WHS English Teacher Suspended After Charge of Providing Devil's Brew at New Year's Party

        I'd want to know  a lot more about this case as those who work with WHS English teacher Kate Harrienger speak highly of her.
        Maybe there was something wrong, but I know how easily circumstances like this are shaped. How old were the "children".  How much did they ingest ? What were the circumstances of "allowing" them access. Who did the complaining ?
         Of course, Ms. Harrienger is now a teacher with a headline of "unlawfully dealing with a child".   Not a good place to be.
          I'll reserve judgment on this one.
WHS English Teacher Accused Of Unlawfully Dealing With Child | WWNY TV 7 - News, Weather and Sports for | Local News

Capitol Confidential » Cuomo gets a flu shot, which means we see his biceps

    Fresh off his assertively progressive State of the State Address, Governor Cuomo got a flue shot today and gave a waiting press corps a look at his biceps.
    Influenza cases this year are rampant.
     Your mayor got his flu shot a couple months back and it must be working so far.
Capitol Confidential » Cuomo gets a flu shot, which means we see his biceps

Steve Behm: A Sensible Voice in Crazy Times

    In retirement, former Watertown and later LA radio personality Steve Behm has become a chronicler of the human condition in American vis his FACEBOOK posts.
Todays news: Some people think Brent Musburger should register as a sex offender for calling a beautiful woman beautiful on a football game full of scantily clad cheerleaders. A norovirus that makes people puke is spreading across the globe. Our designated Secretary of the Treasury writes like a second grader, and Rosie O'Donnel and her "wife" welcome a new baby...Me? I'm just sittin' on a ranch in Texas wondering what planet I'm living on...Y'all sleep tight tonight. I'm sure it gets better tomorrow... :-)

Cuomo Calls for State to Return to Progressive Ideals (Takes off the Mask ?) -

     Campaign on for 2016 as Governor Andrew Cuomo delivers a decidely "progressive" themed State of the State speech calling for an "end to madness" on guns, higher minimum wage, more greenhouse gas standards and even a network of electric charging stations to promote greener cars (oops).
      Last November's election may have signaled to Mr. Cuomo its OK to back off on the more conservative mantra assumed in his first two years, as he angles to position himself for an expected run at the 2016 Democratic Presidential nomination.
      He will need to use liberal dog whistles to win the nod and yesterday's speech seems to be a move in that direction.
      On gun control, the Governor wants to pass a state law ahead of federal legislation to be seen as the nation's defacto leader on the matter.
       Legislative sources say a law in Albany is close to being drafted.
        Meanwhile, in a return to the norm, local political gadfly Middle Class Mike, has dropped his recent bashing of the Governor over the Senate fight and is embracing the speech as the lurch to the left we've been waiting for....That's more telling than any NY Times analysis.

Cuomo Calls for State to Return to Progressive Ideals -

Wife of 'murdered' lottery winner Urooj Khan 'tried to cash $1m after his death from cyanide poisoning' | Mail Online

        The 32 year old wife of her workaholic 46 year old husband is under a cloud of suspicion as officials in Chicago prepare to exhume the body of lottery winner Urooj Khan, who died of apparent heart disease after winning a million dollar scratch off lottery prize.
       Overlooked toxicology reports now suggest Mr. Khan had a little help in his demise with some cyanide in is curry.
        The oft used poison causes cardiac arrest and in a routine death might not be suspected unless foul play is suspected.
         Mr. Khan operated three dry cleaning shops in Chicago.
Wife of 'murdered' lottery winner Urooj Khan 'tried to cash $1m after his death from cyanide poisoning' | Mail Online

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Katherine Webb, parents tell world: Cut Brent Musburger some slack | Fox News

    I know all of this is just media hype and chatter...something to talk about...a faux controversy over an announcer stating the obvious....Miss Alabama, Katherine Webb is shockingly good looking, an by most accounts a modest and decent person.
     All of it said by Brent Musberger during a painfully boring national championship college football game.
      What is it with this society that venerates hotness and then chastises someone for saying it ?.....Gone are the days of the "finely turned ankle".    Pulchritude is on display and Ms. Webb happens to represent the top of the game. Looks, fitness and values......
      Leave Musberger alone...and don't demean him for being a "dirty old man."  Anyone who saw Ms. Webb gets it. She is beautiful.
     And as a minor media outlet, don't I now get to run a picture of her ?


Katherine Webb, parents tell world: Cut Brent Musburger some slack | Fox News

Nixon at 100......Good or Bad...You Decide

       Today is the 100th birthday of Richard Milhous Nixon.....
        Tricky Dick's number one fan...former aide Roger Stone is spending the evening with the Reboso family in Key Biscayne.....That would be a party I'd like to attend.
        Of course Roger has that Nixon tattoo on his back, and that's a little too intense for me.
        President Nixon was a fighter...a not so popular guy who made it to the White House...And really, wasn't all that Watergate stuff a little overblown ?
22 Reasons To Love Richard Nixon On His Birthday

Ski Hill Owner Weighs In On Thompson Park Sledding Issue | WWNY TV 7

    The answer was the one staff originally bought a fence for. That is to place a fence midway up the hill to prevent excessive speed.
     Mr. McAtee at Dry Hill has weighed in. He is a private sector businessman worried about keeping customers happy and any resulting liability.
      His comments are appreciated.
       This week's thaw should allow time to think the matter through.
  Ski Hill Owner Weighs In On Thompson Park Sledding Issue | WWNY TV 7 - News, Weather and Sports for | Local News

Andy: More Casinos, Fewer Guns are Priorities for New Yorkers

     Telling New Yorkers "we have work to do" Governor Cuomo made three new casinos, a higher minimum wage and more expansive gun control as highlights of his agenda for the year ahead.
     A longer school year was also on the Governor's mind.
      The casino proposal was linked to the carrot of local tax relief and stands as a symbol of the Governor's commitment to gambling as an alternative form of taxation.
       Capitol Confidential » Cuomo: Build three Upstate casinos, lengthen school

City Hall Visit Yields Unexepected News for TV 7 Duo

        I was at City Hall to receive a Community Covenant from the Fort Drum Garrison Commander today and suddenly John Moore and a new reporter show up.    No news, just a get-to-know-you tour for Rachel.
        Now I certainly wanted the first time at City Hall to be productive for the Beehive State native, so I invited them to cover the visit by Col. Gary Rosenberg and we even did an interview on another subject that can be used to advance next week's meeting.
       I bored her with stories of my early days in TV news with the 16mm film and the kinescopes.
       I think she must have concluded I was post Sarnoff, but pre-cable news in my vintage.
       I gave her and the Colonel a city mug. Hope I don't get either of them in trouble.

Sheriff Issues Ticket To Deputy Following December Incident | WWNY TV 7

     Appropriate action ? As long as it was just an open container of alcohol and he wasn't drinking it in a county police vehicle....Maybe the officer was showing the K-9 what one looked and smelled like. 
     The other conclusion is that it was a case of drinking on duty, in which case I know what would happen to an employee of mine, since the personnel policy clearly prohibits it.  These days there are too many means to snitch you out...You are better off just adhering to the policy until off duty.
Sheriff Issues Ticket To Deputy Following December Incident | WWNY TV 7 - News, Weather and Sports for | Local News

Heat Coming....Snow Leaving....Spring a Little Closer

       What started out as another mild winter season...then turned headed back to mild again with several days of above average and possible record temperatures.
       This should clear the hard packed snow and ice on sidewalks and parking lots and give some relief to those struggling to pay heating bills.  Kind of like a HEAP program for us all from Mother Nature.
        While winter will surely resume, it's nice to have a week with surety of not touching the snow blower or a shovel.
Weekend might see record high temps; Ask weather questions today at noon |

WDT: Happy Ending in Auction Drama

   A much better result from the latest auction for that warehouse on West Main Street taken for taxes last year year.
    A prominent local company, Knowlton Technologies, was high bidder at the new auction for the site, bidding $80,000. That's a healthy figure and in line with what the building was expected to yield before a previous auction produced a high bidder linked to the former owner who in the end was unable to pay what was bid.
    In the initial auction, the City did retain the $12,500 down payment, making the total haul on the property $92,500 minus expenses incurred in staff time and securing the structure for winter.
    City Council will approve the sale at its next meeting.
Watertown Daily Times | City has new buyer for Fort Drum Vehicle Storage warehouse

State of State offers one-man show - Times Union

   Governor Cuomo will go back to a one man show this year as Legislative leaders will not be giving introductory speeches prior to his State of the State address at 1:30.  The past two years, Speaker Silver and Leader Skelos got to speak as part of some kumbaya exercise in the capital. 
     This year with control of the Senate more of a group act, I am sure Mr. Cuomo wants to share the stage with no one and make his agenda the only agenda presented.
      Minimum wage, gun control, and campaign finance will surely come up. Lacking may be clarity on fracking and the notion of reforming state government appears to have faded as well.
State of State offers one-man show - Times Union

Brent Musburger Criticized for Remarks About Miss Alabama -

    The same people upset over "binders of women" are carping over aging sportscaster Brett Musberger calling the girlfriend of a quarterback "lovely" and "beautiful".
     His remarks about Katherine Webb have been labled "creepy" and excessive after a cutaway shot of the beauty prompted banter fromt the booth during the somewhat boring BCS national championship game on Monday.
     Meanwhile Ms. Webb, who placed herself in the public arena by winning Miss Alabama honors, has been an Internet and media sensation.
Brent Musburger Criticized for Remarks About Miss Alabama -

Gawker publishes N.Y.C. gun-permit holders

   For all the fuss over the publication of names of gun permit owners in two suburban NYC counties, the gossip website Gawker claims it has made names available for the past two years and no one cared.
   The difference is the Journal News made its list more user friendly with an interactive map of Westchester and Rockland counties and its list came out in conjunction with a debate over gun control in the wake of Sandy Hook.
    While I don't want to know who or where permit holders are, it would be interesting to know how many permits there are in each county. There are said to be 1.2 million permit owners in New York State.
      Gawker publishes N.Y.C. gun-permit holders

A.J. McCarron's girlfriend, Katherine Webb, steals spotlight at BCS National Championship game -

    While the BCS game bored America, the TV announcers were busy fawning over Katherine Webb the 23 year old girlfriend of Alabama QB A.J. McCarron.
      Ms. Webb is certainly very attractive and poised as she was crowned Miss Alabama. She currently works for a Chick-fil-a restaurant in Georgia, begging the question of what she got for her degree from rival Auburn.
A.J. McCarron's girlfriend, Katherine Webb, steals spotlight at BCS National Championship game -

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Good Govt Groups Defend FOIL in Journal News/Putnam County Dispute

    Sure, I think Putnam County is breaking the law by refusing to disclose pistol permit holders...It is a public record...But do we need to know ?
    There are lots of things in the public domain we don't know about. Like who get's who get's taxpayer funded abortions...just all sorts of things that the MSM doesn't report because to do so would reveal too many people they value.
     I think it would be great to know who the pistol permit holders are in Jefferson County......Not because it's important but just out of curiosity....
     Does my curiosity trump privacy....Depends on whose high horse I chose to hop on to.
Good Govt Groups Defend FOIL in Journal News/Putnam County Dispute

Watertown To Install Ski Netting At Sledding Hill | WWNY TV 7

      The installation of ski netting at the bottom of Thompson Park Hill is one remedy for concerns over injuries at the popular sledding site. However, restricting access to the upper portions of the hill is still needed to reduce speeds and keep this cherished winter activity as safe as possible.
       Meanwhile, my interest is in two recent accidents that came to light at last nights Council meeting when Councilman Jeff Smith related stories he heard as a result of his position in the health care community.
        I also heard a couple of anecdotal accounts of nighttime sledding at the hill, often association with socializing.
        All of this is well and good, but when you invite or allow people on property for a known activity, I think you have to set limits.

Watertown To Install Ski Netting At Sledding Hill | WWNY TV 7 - News, Weather and Sports for | Local News

Losing Your Marbles Can Get You in Trouble

       This is why I'd make a lousy cop....If I got called to a dispute and had to arrest someone for pouring a container of marbles on someone's head, I'd flip out on all the people who expect taxpayers to intercede in the most mundane personal disputes.
       All these orders of protection and yet the news account refers to the man as the "boyfriend" and the incident happening in "their apartment".
        Neither should be the case if there is a court order.
        Speaking of marbles, remember when we would collect them as kids, especially the larger agates. Some of them were treasures at the time, and we would never think of pouring them over anyone's head. Police Blotter

Shower With a Friend ? Just Shower With Your Phone Instead

    With cell phones now an appendage to the human body, there has to be a way to deal with the need most people feel for bathing and exposure to water.
   Sony now offers a smart phone able to withstand 30 minute submersion without missing a call.
     Who would have thought a generation ago that you'd have to be able to shower with your phone ?
BBC News - CES 2013: Sony unveils bath-friendly Xperia Z smartphone

Monday, January 7, 2013

Pulling The Plug On Electric Car Chargers? | WWNY TV 7

       Some people are aghast at the shot I took at the tofu-eaters on Channel 7 tonight, but really, who is it who wants free electricity for the green elites ?
       The issue is whether to provide a state sponsored, but ill-advised free electric car recharge station on city property.....
         Meanwhile, Davidson Chevrolet had two of them available free of charge to anyone.
        Was it class warfare on my part or spot-on commentary. You decide.
Pulling The Plug On Electric Car Chargers? | WWNY TV 7 - News, Weather and Sports for | Local News

Park Hill Job Security for the Orthopedic Group

      City Council learned tonight that two youngsters have suffered broken femurs in the past couple of weeks slamming into those frozen hay bales at the bottom of the Thompson Park Circle Hill.  Efforts to restrict access to the higher sections of the hill fell prey to vandals taking down fencing.
Park Circle Hill

    Its a great place for sledding...not break-neck sledding.Sometimes being the adult in the room means you won't be the most popular person in the room.
    I also outlined to Council my concerns over the pending closure of Mercy and the need for staff to be on top of closure plans and subsequent supervision of the 400K square foot complex.
   Council didn't really discuss those electric charging stations for Volt owners visiting town. There was widespread reluctance to free charging but I hear my interview on TV 7 was a hit....
    Perhaps not for the tofu-eating, Birkenstock-wearing, Volvo-driving, New York Times reading,  wish-I-went-to Berkeley instead of JCC crowd that might be inclined to buy an electric car. Come to think of it, don't many of them work on Arcade Street.
     Finally, I had a bottle of flouride on my desk tonight, left by Water Czar Mike Sligar. The liquid is what's put in the drinking water to keep us cavity free and to suppress our collective IQs.

No Offense to Tofu-eaters When You Watch the Local News Tonight

    The media is big on the proposal to build a National Grid electric car charging station in Watertown for use by traveling motorists using all-electric vehicles.
    The 220 volt stations exist now at Davidson Chevrolet, but this proposal before City Council is based on a state grant, so it is viewed as free, or nearly free, money.
     I have two sets of gut feelings...on the one hand, having a spot on the map as part of a database for such travelers is in theory the neighborly thing to do.
     On the other hand, why is this the government's job ? Like so many aspects of the green agenda, it is being fueled with so much public subsidy.
    It was the skeptical view that gripped me when interviewed by John Moore on the subject moments ago.  I think I gave the tongue in cheek soundbite about the demographic subscribing to this version of "free sh--". (I of course didn't use such coarse words in John's presence.)
    Of course, Big Oil has been subsidized over the years too, but sometimes you get sick of the socio/economic engineering of human behavior. I still don't know of anyone with an electric car, unless you count golf carts.
    I suspect Council take the station as its only $600 local share and future electric costs, which are minimal if no one uses it. We've been conditioned by many years of these kind of grants from Albany.

Bloomberg Likens Teachers Union to NRA

    Come on Mayor...comparing teacher's unions to the National Rifle Association...What would MCM say ?  
Bloomberg likens teachers union to NRA

A Vegas strip club unveils plans for a new adult pool

   Hope they have a state of the art filtration system.
A Vegas strip club unveils plans for a new adult pool

St. Lawrence County to Local Government: Do Our Bidding or We Kill the Cash Cow

   St. Lawrence County lawmakers are bringing in the heavy artillery in getting approval for a hike in sales tax...They are openly threatening to reduce the current share  of sales tax going to underwrite the local budgets in towns and villages across the Big County.
  They can do that, as local governments (other than cities) have no statutory claim to sales tax.
    If local government poobahs are convinced the threat is real, they will begin pleading with state electeds to raise the tax and let the county keep the additional revenues.
Big County Czar Karen St. Hilaire Says Raise the Tax or the Towns Pay

    The locals shouldn't fold so quickly. They should insist on a share of the new revenue in exchange for their carrying the water for higher taxes.
    Of course the County could just keep the current tax rate and eliminate the share to local governments, forcing them to live within their means.
    St. Lawrence is one of only a handful of counties still at 7%, and since it's run by Democrats, they understand the need for all residents to "pay their fair share."

St. Lawrence County leaders want sales tax hike | NCPR News

Deputies: Sunday Motel Fling Brings Cops a Callin'

   A little dope and a woman on a Sunday afternoon likely would have been a harmless endeavor if the woman, who was allegedly for hire, hadn't gone all whacky and started calling the cops, claiming she was raped by a man chasing her with a gun. Police said she was lying, but the guy discovered his Sunday party at a Town of Watertown motel got him in trouble.
But What's the Guy Look Like ?
    Deputies labled the woman a "prostitute", but we don't have nasty perjoratives for the man in the equation. 
    Who ended up with the $300 ?
Deputies: 'Prostitute' Accused of Falsely Reporting Rape, Gun Chase

Gov. Cuomo’s State of the State Address will pledge not to raise taxes -

   Governor Cuomo's State of the State Address will include no new tax proposals, but will include controls of some sort on military-style "assault" weapons, a higher minimum wage and a plan for publicly financed statewide campaigns for office.
    Politically, those are in order of importance.
     The Governor is riding a 70% approval rating, something unheard of for a governor entering his third year.
Gov. Cuomo’s State of the State Address will pledge not to raise taxes -

WCT: Crystal Restaurant building sold to local landlord

    Two downtown properties have now been sold to local interests. One is the Lincoln Building to businessman Brian Murray and the other is the Crystal Restaurant building sold to local landlord Ricky Frazier.
    Let's hope the local ownership results in improvements to the aging buildings and in particular let's hope the Dephtereos family's stewardship of the Crystal continues unabated.
     Downtown has made many strides in recent years and owners committed to incremental improvement of their property is key to addressing the buildings in need of work but not likely to be part of a major public sector initiative.
Watertown Daily Times | Crystal Restaurant building sold to local landlord

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Roger Stone: Best and Worst Dressed Lists

    With fashion critic Blackwell now passed, political bon vivant and fashion fan Roger Stone has taken up the annual task of a best and worst dressed list.
    For men, former Denver Bronco Shannon Sharpe takes top honors, while for the ladies, First Lady Michelle Obama beat out Pippa Middleton for top honors.
     Among the worst dressed ? Former Minnesota Governor Jesse Ventura and pop star Katy Perry.
Roger Stone: The Stone Zone

Local Model Posts Edgy Gun Photo on FACEBOOK

   With gun control and the marketing of weapons as being chic, a Jefferson County woman has posted on FACEBOOK a potentionally controversial lingerie photo with her pointing one of those assault style weapons right at the camera.
Local Model Ashley Pushes the Envelope With This Gun Photo

      Ashley could be the poster child for the pro gun crowd....Should introduce her to Bart Bonner....

Gun regulations in Cuomo's sights - Times Union

   Republicans in the State Senate will get a quick lesson on how toothless their leadership deal is. This month Governor Cuomo, with the help of the Independent Democratic Coaltion will pass some kind of gun control bill, including a ban on so-called assault weapons.
    For the Governor, it's another punching of his ticket for the Democratic nomination fight in 2016.
    Senate Republicans will just have to go along on this one, in hopes of winning another battle further down the line.
   The GOP lost ground in the last election and is depending Senator Jeffrey Klein's five member IDC to form a majority.
Gun regulations in Cuomo's sights - Times Union

Gun Forum

    I haven't read anything about Friday nights's gun forum in Watertown, other than a post by Middle Class Mike.
    Did I miss coverage of it ?

WDT: Another Restaurant Review....Arcade Eaterie Lauded as Cozy.

      I always wonder when the food critic comes in, do you know who he is ? I wouldn't recognize Walter Seibel, but a strange face with a posse coming in to eat could raise suspicions.
Food Critic Seen in 2007 Visit to Public Radio
       Also, we live in a small town and doesn't that result in reviews without too many sharp elbows under the basket ?
        I think his reviews are polite and thorough and you can usually read between the lines. A less than tangy tinge but an assessment that fits with North Country tastes which tend towards informal , old-comfortable-shoe style dining with portions as big as all outdoors.
Watertown Daily Times | Local News, Sports, Features, and Community Information for Jefferson County, St. Lawrence County, and Lewis County in Northern New York.

Big Time Hockey to Resume, Meanwhile Local Hockey to Continue

   Hockey returning in time for a truncated 2013 season with Stanley Cup playoffs coming later than ever. A tentative collective bargaining agreement has been reached between the NHL and its players.
   Meanwhile, hockey has been popular in Watertown with the addition of the Privateers and discussions will begin soon on the particulars of that teams second season next fall.
   NHL, NHLPA reach tentative agreement - ESPN

WDT: Beer Giant to Base Itself in Oswego

   We will find out if bigger is better as the area's largest beer distributor plans to move operations to its Oswego headquarters. Eagle Beverage has been telling customers they have to conform to order and delivery protocols that will limit the number of delivery runs. The firm is also said to be planning to sell liquor in addition to beer.
   Eagle also has reportedly pulled out of a plan to build a distribution center in Watertown.
    To their credit, Eagle is the only distributor to maintain personal contact with smaller retailers by sending a salesman every week, but the old days of calling and asking for a delivery that day are increasingly a thing of the past, although rivals Missert and Doldo still will do that.
Watertown Daily Times | Eagle Beverage

Loyal Italian Cat, Toldo, Brings Gifts To Owner's Grave

   Another reason that despite the extra work, we love animals.
Loyal Italian Cat, Toldo, Brings Gifts To Owner's Grave (PHOTO)

EXCLUSIVE: Welfare recipients getting cash at strip bars and X-rated video stores — on taxpayer dime -

   So what ?
    If welfare recipients use their government supplied benefit cards at ATM's located in liquor stores, bars or adult video stores, how or why would anyone know ?
   People are given debit cards so they won't be stigmatized by having to use food stamps.

So we see people with debit cards and if the machine accepts them, end of story.
    If you are going to give people money, be prepared to learn they will spend it as they please.
     The Post presents this, suggesting businesses are doing something wrong. Not so. If someone has cash, they have the right to buy what they want.
EXCLUSIVE: Welfare recipients getting cash at strip bars and X-rated video stores — on taxpayer dime -