Monday, May 16, 2011

FEMA Grant/Patches Kennedy/Barney Frank/Other Stuff

The Sting was a great movie about running a con game and in my opinion that is how grants operate. The idea with a con is to make the mark (not BB) think they are winning and with a grant you target a need and have a nice front end load (money) but the back end load is what kills you and that back end is it will become your responsibility for future funding.

Middleboro has a dire need for full or as close as your can get to it for fire services and a FEMA grant is available. No doubt about the need as that is a slam dunk. Now we’ll read all about numerical magic that may show just how the future funding will magically appear since the feds always have strings attached and in this case the strings are cut in two years. So what happens down the road? More layoffs of the newly hired? Reduced station hours - again? To quote Cuba Gooding: “Show me the money!”

What and where are potential sources of revenue? State just may open the door a bit with a little chip away at collective bargaining allowing some health care savings. The G&E will be shoveling some more PILOT money into the dismal coffers of our quaint community. Maybe negotiations with the myriad of town unions will get some needed cash flow? But extra cash means a feeding frenzy as everyone lines up for their collective share of the pie. This is an example of where government on all levels needs to be up front about anything and everything - you do it show where the money will be coming from.

I’ve loved to rake “Patches” Kennedy over the coals since I have always considered him the ultimate political lightweight living off of family name and connections. His issues with depression and addiction are well documented especially the more public displays that were a family and personal embarrassment but when you read his comments on his situation it really strikes an emotional cord. The guy is battling and will all his life. His exit from politics seemed to be a big plus for him and he has eloquently expressed that.

Occasionally I do actually agree with the Congressional king of spittle Barney Frank. Barney was yapping away about Republicans and their amnesia regarding putting some moderate clamps or road blocks in place for oil speculators. Speculators actually comprise most of the market and they do not drill, work on a platform, explore or anything else except display a casino mentality regarding oil futures. This has resulted in price escalation even when a glut of gasoline and oil appear. Even when consumption figures decrease. They do nothing but push paper around and take a financial risk with the end result being sky rocketing prices based on perceived down the road market conditions. When a shot is called wrong they can lose millions and even billions but even when wrong we still pay high prices thanks to an inflated commodity.

OBL is reported to have had quite a stash of porn. I wondered where all my stuff went.

OBL also had three wives. A Muslim custom is multiple wives and we do the same only consecutively.

Another Muslim was arrested for interfering with a flight by yelling “God is great” and attempting to get into the cockpit. Naturally one of the excuses of his legal hump is he was trying to get into the bathroom. I often yell “God is great” when my prostrate cooperates.

Now up at the plate is a potential tax on candy and soda under the guise of obesity. Yeah - like any of us really believe it is motivated by concern and not revenue.

I wonder if they will also tax diet drinks? Probably.

Will the nutrition nannies also target processed foods? Loaded with salt and just look at those ingredients.

I look at some of the visible physical conditions of supporters of revenue enhancement on soda and candy and wonder why they don’t practice what they preach?

There is also a proposal to now tax plastic bags at the supermarket with the stash being divided among the store and the revenue enhancers.

As I got older I noticed I sometimes forget where I’ve parked my car at the super market. What is especially alarming is when I have walked to the market.

And on the super market trail Stop & Shop is finally moving out. I really am not particularly fond of S&S and have often wondered why the Middleboro store has managed to survive since it always seems like a sparse number of customers when I do stop by.

I can’t imagine any pet messier than a parrot although my wife - The Lovely Cynthia - claims husbands could be considered their equal.

The local Dairy Queen has had some nice coupons. Many buy one get one free items.

Dustin Pedroia has been chasing out of the strike zone fastballs the way Charlie Sheen chases skirts only Charlie has had more success.

BB finally “educated” me on the value of a Kindle. I do prefer a book but not by enough to make it a deal breaker. I have loaded in about fifty books and almost all were free. Already paid for itself.

I have observed and participated in MCAS for about fifteen years and have come to the conclusion that teaching to the test has dramatically increased test scores but has dramatically reduced ingenuity, spontaneity and creativity in the classroom. Just an opinion.

Cameras to catch traffic violators is technology for diligent law enforcement or revenue enhancement? Just another way to legally be a pickpocket.

A nice grant for firefighters but the downside is what do you do when it runs out?

I am amazed that the most expensive of hotels charge - and a high price - for using wireless. $15 a day is not unusual. Yet a coffee house around the corner or a Motel 6 will have it free.

Another nickel and dime pathetic fee from high end resorts is a “resort fee” which is just another scam to help the bottom line.

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