Posts Tagged ‘policy’
Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Thursday, May 7, 2015
I find it strangely fascinating that so many are so fearful… particularly in the South, and in Alabama especially.
Two days ago many celebrated Cinco de Mayo – the 5th of May – by eating out at Mexican-themed restaurants, quaffing a few margaritas, or by making Mexican-styled eats at home. It’s a way, in part, to acknowledge solidarity with our Mexican brothers and sisters and commemorating Mexico’s 1862 victory over France at the Battle of Puebla during the Franco-Mexican War. A turning point in Mexican struggle for independence, the firefight pitted 2000 ragtag, poorly equipped Mexicans against 6000 well equipped, battle-tested French soldiers. By the time the French retreated from the all-day battle, 500 French, and 100 Mexican lives were lost.
Alabama State House
11 South Union Street, Montgomery, AL
But May 5 also marks another significant event, largely unknown – and certainly unrecognized – by many, if not most.
On May 5, 1925 John T. Scopes was arrested in Tennessee for teaching Darwin’s Theory of Evolution.
It certainly seems Southerners have had it out for Science for quite some time.
Now, like hogs wallowing in mud, Alabama politicians want to meddle even more in the stinking pot of their own making by… well, here’s the news item: Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in - My Hometown is the sweetest place I know, - Politics... that "dirty" little "game" that first begins in the home., - Read 'em and weep: The Daily News | Tagged: Alabama, biology, Climate change, cloning, Darwin, education, engineering, Evolution, GOP, hypocrisy, idiots, law, math, Montgomery, policy, politician, Republican, school, schools, science, smart, teaching, Technology | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, May 6, 2015
Opining upon the notion of Alabama State Senator Del Marsh’s casino gambling plan to fund Medicaid, someone wrote, “[It’s] The only voluntary tax I know of. If you don’t want to play don’t pay.”
The retort was, “I’m finding myself more open to this lately however; once someone loses their house, job, family etc., don’t come crying for taxpayers to take care of you.”
To which came this reply, “Those people are already finding ways to gamble their lives away. They don’t need a lottery.”
My response follows.
“Those people,” are the Legislators.
In this one thing, I share the Governor’s sentiment – which he ineffectually (no surprise there) communicates:
Lottery will NEVER remedy poor fiscal policy, with which Alabama is replete.
In almost every lottery situation, law demands that the proceeds from lottery are to be used to supplement – not supplant – existing revenue. And in this single instance authored by Senator Del Marsh (R, Anniston) it is being used to supplant – to replace – existing sources of revenue. And that is Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in - Did they REALLY say that?, - My Hometown is the sweetest place I know, - Politics... that "dirty" little "game" that first begins in the home., - Read 'em and weep: The Daily News | Tagged: AL, Alabama, bill, casino, Del Marsh, gamble, gambline, gambling, GOP, Governor Bentley, health, healthcare, lottery, Medicaid, money, Montgomery, news, policy, poor, poverty, Republican, Revenue, Robert Bentley, Senator, Senator Marsh, sick, taxes | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, April 8, 2015
A bill by State Senator Arthur Orr (R-Decatur) to privatize the Alcoholic Beverage Control Board has died in the Senate Finance and Taxation General Fund Committee by a 7-6 vote along party lines, with one Republican voting ‘NO.’ The vote received applause from attendees.
A substitution bill presented by Orr would’ve changed the suspension penalty for Selling to Minors from one year to one week, and increased taxes, was also adopted along party line vote.
Orr said earlier that, “Part of our job is to downsize government,” and demanded a committee vote be taken on his bill today.
Alcoholic Beverage Control Board Administrator Mac Gipson testified that employees are paid from mark-ups from sales in the state’s 176 ABC stores. He also noted that by comparison, there are 587 private package stores in the state.
In Alabama, liquor is marked up at Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in - Did they REALLY say that?, - Politics... that "dirty" little "game" that first begins in the home. | Tagged: ABC, Alabama, Alcohol, ALpolitics, Arthur Orr, beer, beverage, Bill Beasley, board, booze, business, Committee, convenience store, Democrat, enterprise, entrepreneuship, geotag, geotagged, jobs, law, liquor, Montgomery, news, policy, politics, religion, Republican, retail, Revenue, sales, senate, Senator, spirits, store, taxes, unemployment, wine | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Sunday, October 26, 2014
Alabama Governor Bentley claims he, and his policies – whatever they are (he has none… just look for your self) – have been responsible for declining Alabama Unemployment. Fact is, he’s blowing smoke.
Alabama Governor Bentley claims he, and his policies – whatever they are (he has none… just look for your self) – have been responsible for declining Alabama Unemployment. Fact is, he’s blowing smoke.
Alabama’s Republican Governor Robert Bentley, MD has crowed about “success” in lowering Alabama unemployment during the past 4 years of his term.
However, to be certain, a random statistical examination of the state’s Unemployment rate shows that it is very likely, AT LEAST two points higher than reported. Here’s how.
Unemployment is calculated as a simple average. Take the number of people working, added into the number of people NOT working, AND who WANT to work, divided by the people who are available to work, gives the unemployment rate.
Here’s how the Bureau of Labor Statistics defines the parameters of the equation:
What are the basic concepts of employment and unemployment?
The basic concepts involved in identifying the employed and unemployed are quite simple:
• People with jobs are employed.
• People who are jobless, looking for a job, and available for work are unemployed.
• The labor force is made up of the employed and the unemployed.
• People who are neither employed nor unemployed are not in the labor force.
Simply put, the formula is:
|Unemployment Rate =
|Employed + Unemployed
However, if you’ve had a college course in Statistics – and most folks in Alabama have not (it’s part of maintaining the policy of “largely poor, uneducated, and easy to command”) – then you’d understand that a random sample of the set would show essentially the same results.
And face it… most folks in Alabama DO NOT HAVE A COLLEGE EDUCATION. In fact, according to the Alabama Department of Education, Alabama’s High School Drop Out rate is 28%. Page 2, Frame 2 of the linked document shows the 2010-2011 TOTAL Graduation Rate as 72%.
Face it… ALABAMA IS
Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in - Lost In Space: TOTALLY Discombobulated, - My Hometown is the sweetest place I know, - Politics... that "dirty" little "game" that first begins in the home. | Tagged: adults, analysis, Bentley, children, dumb, dumb kid, easy to command, eduction, election, facts, Fail, failure, figures, FRED, GOP, governor, Governor Bentley, graduation, High School Drop Out, idiot, idiota, ignorant, impoverished, jobs, policy, politics, poor, poverty, poverty stricken, Republican, Robert Bentley, statistics, stupid, uneducated, unemployment | 1 Comment »
Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, October 15, 2014
By his refusal to act, Alabama Republican Governor Robert Bentley allowed legislation to pass which PROHIBITED TWO Out-of-State Businesses from Investing, Conducting Business Operations, and Hiring in Alabama.
Total Cost Loss To Alabama = $200+ Million
Governor Bentley Refused To Reign In Unfounded Fear Mongering By GOP Dominated Legislature
Fueled by unfounded, unscientific constituency fears, Legislators in Alabama’s state Senate and House of Representatives recently authored restrictive regulatory legislation which made it impossible for a Texas-based business to expand operations in Alabama. Not counting the jobs and salaries lost, the investment cost of the loss to Alabama exceeds $200 Million.
Specifically, Pioneer Green Energy, 802 Lavaca St, Austin, TX 78701, (512) 351-3363, planned to spend over $200 Million to build two facilities in Cherokee and Etowah counties to generate electricity, and hire local people to operate and maintain the facilities.
In comparison, Remington Arms – the firearms manufacturer which recently announced relocation to Huntsville, Alabama – will be spending $110 Million, with $38 Million in tax incentives provided by the state.
Pioneer was set to construct 30-45 wind-driven turbines (electricity-generating windmills) in Etowah county at a cost of $160 Million in their NoccalulaWind project. In nearby Cherokee county, they were set to construct 7-8 such windmills, at a cost of $40 Million in their ShinboneWind project.
A series of bills which originated in Alabama’s state Senate, and House of Representatives was effectively, the death knell for the projects.
State Senator Phil Williams, a Republican in Alabama’s 10th Senate District, speaks from the Floor of Alabama State Senate. He authored SB 402 & SB 403, prohibitive regulatory legislation which hamstrung $200 Million in Industrial Development and Jobs.
As reported by Conservation Alabama, April 10, 2014, in a column entitled “2014 Legislative Session recap,“ “Two local bills opposed by Conservation Alabama did pass. Senate Bills 402 and 403 requiring strict regulations for wind energy conversion systems in Etowah and Cherokee counties passed, eliminating any real chance of wind energy in those two counties. After these local bills passed it was thought that Senate Bill 12, a statewide bill to regulate wind energy conversion systems, would make it through with language that superseded the two local bills and included more reasonable and agreed upon language between the two sides. However, proponents of the bill could not get on the same page. Last minute changes to the bill created additional controversy, and the bill ultimately failed to pass in the House and consequently the two local bills will become law.”
Alabama state Senate Bills 402 and 403 were authored and sponsored by Senator Phil Williams, a Republican whom represents Alabama’s 10th Senate District, which includes Etowah and Cherokee counties. By profession, Senator Williams is a lawyer, and in part, he wrote this about himself on his legislative profile/biography webpage: “Phil Williams is the managing member of Williams & Associates, LLC, a law firm based in Gadsden, AL.” His campaign website states this, “His legal focus is largely in the areas of insurance, municipal and corporate defense.” (SB402 may be found online here -or downloaded from this site AL SB402-int– & SB 403 may be found online here -or downloaded from this site AL SB403-int-)
Here’s Part One of the Grand Hypocrisy. The Alabama GOP website states this about Senator Williams: “One of the most promising freshman Senators in Montgomery is Phil Williams of Rainbow City. He is the proud sponsor of the Alabama Jobs Creation and Retention Act, which provides tax incentives to new or existing businesses that engage in industrial projects. Sen. Williams said, “This Act will help make Alabama a center of gravity for new and existing business growth, and is another example of our Republican-led senate following through on our campaign promises.””
Why would a State Senator whom sponsored the “Alabama Jobs Creation and Retention Act” author legislation that FORBADE the creation of jobs?
Alabama State Senator Phil Williams (R), in green tie & suit, authored regulatory legislation which lost $200 Million Industrial Development in Alabama, and cost jobs.
According to an article in The Alabama Reporter written by Brandon Moseley, published 07 June 2013, Senator Williams, who hails from Rainbow City, is seeking a second term in office, and made this remark about his candidacy: “It has been a great honor to serve the people of Senate District 10 these past few years. We have accomplished so much of what the people in our communities said they wanted, and my intent is to continue the fight for conservative values and finish what we’ve started.”
Readers may recall that Etowah county is home to disgraced former Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore – sometimes popularly known as “The Ten Commandments Judge” – who was removed from office following a hearing November 12, 2003 by a unanimous vote of the Alabama Court of the Judiciary. Since then, he campaigned for the same office – State Supreme Court Chief Justice – and was elected November 6, 2012.
It certainly seem that folks in Alabama Politics – that’d be the GOP/Republicans – are largely backwards, hypocritical, narrow minded fear mongers who appeal to their equally “largely poor, uneducated, and easy to command” constituency.
Because while on one hand, they decry “regulation” and “excessive” regulation which they claim constrains business, and free enterprise – and therefore jobs – in the state, they simultaneously enact the very legislation they decry.
It’s called HYPOCRISY. And to be certain, it’s simply defined as “the practice of claiming to have moral standards or beliefs to which one’s own behavior does not conform; pretense.”
This is a HUGE case in point, that an out-of-state business was prepared to construct and expand business operations in Alabama – from the ground, up. Had leased land, obtained easements, and every other necessary preliminary item to conduct business operations… including hiring professional services in Alabama to prepare for business operations.
Wouldn’t you know it? The GOP-dominated Alabama State Legislature (House & Senate) enacted legislation, which passed without Governor Bentley’s signature, which PROHIBITED the businesses from even getting the first bulldozer out to clear land. Seriously.
Think I’m joking, exaggerating, or kidding?
Oh… and be sure to thank them in November.
Alabama regs too strict for turbines, says lawyer for wind energy developer
By William Thornton, firstname.lastname@example.org
on August 20, 2014 at 11:16 AM, updated August 20, 2014 at 12:03 PM
GADSDEN, Alabama — The lawyer for a Texas-based company abandoning plans for two windmill farms in northeast Alabama said today that recently approved state regulations on wind energy led to the decision.
Charlie Stewart, attorney for Pioneer Green Energy, said the company no longer has plans to develop two wind energy farms in Cherokee and Etowah counties. Groups opposing the development announced yesterday they had received word Pioneer Green was relinquishing land leases for the projects.
Pioneer Green Energy announced last year it planned to develop wind energy projects in the two counties, and said land leases had already been secured. Five Cherokee County residents filed suit in an attempt to stop the development, and a group of Etowah County residents also filed suit.
Pioneer Green planned a $40 million project with seven to eight turbines in Cherokee County. The larger Etowah County project would have had 30 to 45 turbines costing $160 million.
Stewart said the company was ready to begin construction when the lawsuits were filed, and the legislation passed earlier this year, which established setback and noise standards.
That bill required the state’s Public Safety Commission to oversee wind farms, mandated that noise from the turbines not exceed an average of 50 decibels, and laid out a setback of five times the height of the tower from the base to the nearest property line. Last year, a company official said the legislation was too restrictive by making the property line the threshold and not the nearest residence or structure.
Stewart said much of the opposition was fueled by “hysteria.”
“The bill was basically Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in - Business... None of yours, - Did they REALLY say that?, - My Hometown is the sweetest place I know, - Politics... that "dirty" little "game" that first begins in the home. | Tagged: AL, Alabama, attorney, Can you smell the hypocrisy cooking?, construction, electricity, Energy, entrepreneur, fearful, fears, GOP, Green, hypocrisy, hypocrites, ignorant, income, industry, jobs, lawyer, lazy, money, news, Phil Williams, Pioneer Green Energy, policy, politics, poor, poverty, power, Renewable, Republican, Revenue, shiftless, stupid, Texas, wind, Wind turbine, windmill | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Sunday, October 5, 2014
There’s a meme which circulates on FaceBook and presumably, in other places as well, which appears similarly as this:
Drug Test Public Assistance Recipients Meme
Honestly, the idea is a failure.
But you’d rarely – if ever – hear about it’s failures.
Florida was the first state to tread that path. What they learned was surprising. And then, the law was struck down by a Federal court. The states that embark upon Florida’s path will be wa$ting their citizen$ taxe$.
Only 2.6% of Florida applicants failed the drug test.
“Because the Florida law requires that applicants who pass the test be reimbursed for the cost, an average of $30, the cost to the state was $118,140. This is more than would have been paid out in benefits to the people who failed the test. As a result, the testing cost the government an extra $45,780.”
The purported savings in Florida’s program will be negligible after administrative costs and reimbursements for the drug tests are taken into account.
But it wasn’t limited to Florida. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in - Faith, Religion, Goodness - What is the Soul of a man?, - Politics... that "dirty" little "game" that first begins in the home. | Tagged: abuse, business, economy, family, Florida, food, fraud, GOP, government, Minnesota, Missouri, money, Oklahoma, policy, politics, Republicans, TANF, taxes, Temporary Assistance to Needy Families, Tennessee, Utah | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Thursday, August 7, 2014
Every single word in this OpEd is spot-on.
Alabama is on the verge of a complete takeover of it’s prison system. That is a VERY sad indictment, and fact. Further, most Alabamians are COMPLETELY unaware of the dangers the state faces.
Alabama is a state in crisis.
Fiscal crisis from a failure of long-term management, unwise, unsound policy, unnecessary prolonged and costly legal battles at the state and federal levels over inane laws which have had no positive effect upon the state, from policies and procedures which have only burdened the people, tax giveaways to corporations, funded corporate welfare, an inequitable personal income taxation system which has hampered and hamstrung state growth, and further placed the state’s citizens into poverty.
Face it folks… I don’t give a damn about what political colors you wear, or how or what you describe yourself as politically in Alabama… if everything were peaches and cream in the state, then why in the Hell is the state’s poverty level 18% – 4 percentage points ABOVE the national average?
Why is the state sick in their persons? Of all states, Alabama continually ranks high in rates of obesity, diabetes, cancer, heart disease, etc., even among CHILDREN!
Why does the state have a high crime rate?
Why are Alabamians largely “largely poor, uneducated, and easy to command”?
Why Alabama Cannot Wait on Prison Reform: Guest Opinion
Guest opinion By Alabama State Senator Cam Ward
August 06, 2014 at 9:00 AM, updated August 06, 2014 at 9:05 AM
By Cam Ward
Prisons are an issue that would never rank high on any list of priorities for the people of Alabama and understandably so. With unemployment hovering near 7 percent and many schools in need of repair, people ask me why prison reform should be a major subject at this time. The answer is simple – because our failure to maintain a good corrections system is going to push over a fiscal cliff that we may never recover from.
For years as our corrections system became more crowded the political leadership in Montgomery turned their eyes to issues more palatable to the voters during election time. The general feeling for decades has been “let’s wait and deal with that when we have more money.”
As we waited our system grew to 192 percent capacity and despite this incarceration rate our state has the 8th highest violent crime rate in the country. Both of these statistics point to a failing system of corrections.
In addition to allowing for a broken system to continue down a path of inefficiency we have also created a fiscal nightmare of the likes our state has never seen before. While we spend Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in - Politics... that "dirty" little "game" that first begins in the home., - Read 'em and weep: The Daily News | Tagged: abuse, ADOC, AL, Alabama, Alabama Department of Corrections, Alabama Senate, Cam Ward, Corrections, Democrats, Department of Corrections, geotag, geotagged, GOP, government, governor, Kim Thomas, money, policy, politics, prison, Prison reform, prison system, prisoners, reform, Senator, state, takeover, Taxation, taxes, United States | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, July 28, 2014
Let’s talk about drug abuse.
Abuse of any kind is improper use, or dependency. In some cases, so-called “recreational” use is “abuse,” for there is no other kind of use, since a drug may be already illegal.
For the greatest part, those drugs, which are sometimes mistakenly called ‘narcotics’ (technically, narcotics are derivatives of and synthetic chemical relatives to the opium plant) are already illegal, and include LSD and other hallucinogens, heroin, methamphetamine (as “crystal meth”), etc. And, at the Federal level, like it, or not, agree or disagree, marijuana is included in that list.
Further, alcohol must be included in the list of abused substances, simply because we know that people’s lives can be, and are destroyed by alcohol abuse, directly and indirectly.
There’s a database of information based upon hospital admissions related to drug abuse. It’s called the Treatment Episode Data Set, or TEDS, and the information is collected anonymously by each facility in a state that receives “State alcohol and/or drug agency funds (including Federal Block Grant funds) for the provision of substance abuse treatment.”
It is not an exhaustive data set by any means, and there are limitations upon it, yet it does provide some reliable degree of accuracy to the extent, scope and nature of the problem. Consequently, information in “the tables focus on treatment admissions for substance abusers.”
In other words, someone abuses a substance on the list to the extent that they need some degree of care, including hospitalization, and that anonymous information about their admission gets collected and reported. For the purposes of that report, anonymous information is age, sex, ethnicity/race and drug(s) which led to the need for treatment.
The TEDS list of abused drugs are: Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in - Do you feel like we do, Dr. Who? | Tagged: 420, abuse, Alcohol, Alcoholic beverage, Children and Youth, decriminalization, drug abuse, drugs, facts, figures, Legalization, marijuana, medicine, mental health, Mental Health Tax, MJ, money, policy, politics, pot, Pro-Legalization, psychosis, reefer, research, studies, tax, taxes, youth | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Saturday, June 28, 2014
“How much is enough?” is a qood question to ask many folks, especially some among the Wall $treet crowd.
And to be certain, the two principles of “the worker is worthy of their hire,” and “You must not muzzle an ox to keep it from eating as it treads out the grain” are equally compelling ethics.
As those two ethics concern our nation’s economy, we can point to times in history where various nations suffered revolution, and the most common causes of revolution.
In fact, I wrote at length about it in this blog in 2011, and observed in part that, “…it’s not as if uproars have never happened before. They happen with great regularity and frequency. In fact, they’re quite predictable. Yes, predictable. It’s called “history.” The maxim goes something like this: “Those who forget the lessons of history are condemned to repeat them.” And so, any reasonable or prudent person should ask, “What are the lessons of history?””
Just remember this: Food, Clothing, Shelter. If you can’t get them with what you have, you’ll fight, kill, go to war, or civil insurrection, to obtain the basic necessities of life.
The Pitchforks Are Coming… For Us Plutocrats
By NICK HANAUER
Nick Hanauer is a Seattle-based entrepreneur.
Memo: From Nick Hanauer
To: My Fellow Zillionaires
You probably don’t know me, but like you I am one of those .01%ers, a proud and unapologetic capitalist. I have founded, co-founded and funded more than 30 companies across a range of industries—from itsy-bitsy ones like the night club I started in my 20s to giant ones like Amazon.com, for which I was the first nonfamily investor. Then I founded aQuantive, an Internet advertising company that was sold to Microsoft in 2007 for $6.4 billion. In cash. My friends and I own a bank. I tell you all this to demonstrate that in many ways I’m no different from you. Like you, I have a broad perspective on business and capitalism. And also like you, I have been rewarded obscenely for my success, with a life that the other 99.99 percent of Americans can’t even imagine. Multiple homes, my own plane, etc., etc. You know what I’m talking about. In 1992, I was selling pillows made by my family’s business, Pacific Coast Feather Co., to retail stores across the country, and the Internet was a clunky novelty to which one hooked up with a loud squawk at 300 baud. But I saw pretty quickly, even back then, that many of my customers, the big department store chains, were already doomed. I knew that as soon as the Internet became fast and trustworthy enough—and that time wasn’t far off—people were going to shop online like crazy. Goodbye, Caldor. And Filene’s. And Borders. And on and on.
With over 30 years of experience across a broad range of industries including manufacturing, retailing, e-commerce, digital media and advertising, software, aerospace, health care, and finance. Hanauer’s experience and perspective have produced an unusual record of serial successes. Hanauer has managed, founded or financed over 30 companies, creating aggregate market value of tens of billions of dollars. Some notable companies Include Amazon.com, Aquantive Inc., (purchased by Microsoft in 2007 for $6.4 billion), Insitu group (purchased by Boeing for $400 million), Market Leader (purchased by Trulia in 2013 for $350 million). Some other companies include Marchex, Newsvine, Qliance, Seattle Bank and Pacific Coast Feather Company. – Photo by Robbie McClaran
Realizing that, seeing over the horizon a little faster than the next guy, was the strategic part of my success. The lucky part was that I had two friends, both immensely talented, who also saw a lot of potential in the web. One was a guy you’ve probably never heard of named Jeff Tauber, and the other was a fellow named Jeff Bezos. I was so excited by the potential of the web that I told both Jeffs that I wanted to invest in whatever they launched, big time. It just happened that the second Jeff—Bezos—called me back first to take up my investment offer. So I helped underwrite his tiny start-up bookseller. The other Jeff started a web department store called Cybershop, but at a time when trust in Internet sales was still low, it was too early for his high-end online idea; people just weren’t yet ready to buy expensive goods without personally checking them out (unlike a basic commodity like books, which don’t vary in quality—Bezos’ great insight). Cybershop didn’t make it, just another dot-com bust. Amazon did somewhat better. Now I own a very large yacht.
But let’s speak frankly to each other. I’m not the smartest guy you’ve ever met, or the hardest-working. I was a mediocre student. I’m not technical at all—I can’t write a word of code. What sets me apart, I think, is a tolerance for risk and an intuition about what will happen in the future. Seeing where things are headed is the essence of entrepreneurship. And what do I see in our future now?
I see pitchforks.
At the same time that people like you and me are Read the rest of this entry »
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Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Saturday, May 3, 2014
More power to you!
The GOP has been hijacked by extremist elements.
It’s time to put those sorry, low-life punks in prison for collusion, terrorism and anti-American activity.
‘Smart’ Firearm Draws Wrath of the Gun Lobby
By JEREMY W. PETERS
APRIL 27, 2014
Belinda Padilla is trying to market a new .22-caliber handgun that uses a radio frequency-enabled stopwatch to identify the authorized user so no one else can fire it.
Credit Monica Almeida/The New York Times
BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. — Belinda Padilla does not pick up unknown calls anymore, not since someone posted her cellphone number on an online forum for gun enthusiasts. A few fuming-mad voice mail messages and heavy breathers were all it took.
Then someone snapped pictures of the address where she has a P.O. box and put those online, too. In a crude, cartoonish scrawl, this person drew an arrow to the blurred image of a woman passing through the photo frame. “Belinda?” the person wrote. “Is that you?”
Her offense? Trying to market and sell a new .22-caliber handgun that uses a radio frequency-enabled stopwatch to identify the authorized user so no one else can fire it. Ms. Padilla and the manufacturer she works for, Armatix, intended to make the weapon the first “smart gun” for sale in the United States.
But shortly after Armatix went public with its plans to start selling in Southern California, Ms. Padilla, a fast-talking, hard-charging Beverly Hills businesswoman who leads the company’s fledgling American division, encountered the same uproar that has stopped gun control advocates, Congress, President Obama and lawmakers across the country as they seek to pass tougher laws and promote new technologies they contend will lead to fewer firearms deaths.
Lately, there has been little standing in the way of the muscle of the gun lobby, whose advocates recently derailed Mr. Obama’s nominee for surgeon general, Vivek Murthy, a Boston doctor who has expressed alarm about the frequency of shooting deaths.
And despite support from the Obama administration and the promise of investment from Silicon Valley, guns with owner-recognition technology remain shut out of the market today.
“Right now, unfortunately, these organizations that are scaring everybody have the power,” Ms. Padilla said. “All we’re doing is providing extra levels of safety to your individual right to bear arms. And if you don’t want our gun, don’t buy it. It’s not for everyone.”
In Georgia on Wednesday, Gov. Nathan Deal signed into law a bill that allows people to carry guns in bars, government buildings and even some churches. The National Rifle Association called the measure historic.
In West Virginia, one of several Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in - Business... None of yours, - Politics... that "dirty" little "game" that first begins in the home., - Read 'em and weep: The Daily News | Tagged: Armatix, business, CA, California, enterprise, entrepreneur, extremists, female, firearms, guns, handguns, inventor, law, money, news, Obama, pistol, pistols, policy, politics, POTUS, right wing, rights, safety, Surgeon General, terror, terrorists, threats, weapon, whackos, woman | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, April 28, 2014
Here’s a fun–n–easy guessing game!
(Emphasis on “easy.”)
Don’t be scared or intimidated by the fill-in-the-blanks.
(Which appear as _?nation?_.)
It’s really only two answers.
(The other answer is _?currency?_.)
HINT: (None of which are “United States.”)
The CIA World Factbook
The _?nation?_ economy has experienced continuous growth and features low unemployment, contained inflation, very low public debt, and a strong and stable financial system. By 2012, _?_ had experienced more than 20 years of continued economic growth, averaging 3.5% a year.
Demand for resources and energy from Asia and especially China has grown rapidly, creating a channel for resources investments and growth in commodity exports. The high _?currency?_ has hurt the manufacturing sector, while the services sector is the largest part of the _?nation?_ economy, accounting for about 70% of GDP and 75% of jobs.
_?nation?_ was comparatively unaffected by the global financial crisis as the banking system has remained strong and inflation is under control.
_?nation?_ has benefited from a dramatic surge in its terms of trade in recent years, stemming from Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in - Business... None of yours, - Even MORE Uncategorized!, - Politics... that "dirty" little "game" that first begins in the home. | Tagged: banking, banks, business, CIA, CIA World Factbook, economy, fun, Games, international, intrigue, jobs, policy, trade, World Factbook | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Saturday, April 12, 2014
When campaigning for the office of Alabama’s Governor, Robert Bentley – a retired dermatologist physician who at the time was an elected representative from Tuscaloosa County – promised if elected governor that, “I will forgo a salary as state representative for the rest of my term and will not accept a salary as Governor until Alabama reaches full employment.”
When pressed on the matter, he later defined “full employment” as having state unemployment somewhere around 5%. It is a promise to which, as of the date of this entry – 12 April 2014 – he has kept. In other words, Alabama has NOT reached “full employment,” and he has not been paid a salary. He has, however, been compensated for out-of-pocket expenses (the governor’s office has a budget, so why would he personally have any such expenses for work in an official capacity?), though he has received – as legislator, a legally-mandated $1.00 per month salary. Since his election to the governorship, he has not received a salary.
Let’s examine Governor Bentley‘s employment record.
During Governor Robert Bentley’s watch, International Paper – the large paper mill formerly known as Champion Paper, in Courtland, and the largest employer in Lawrence County – closed and cost the area economy & state 1100 jobs. Those jobs were Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in - Business... None of yours, - Politics... that "dirty" little "game" that first begins in the home. | Tagged: Alabama, ale, American City Business Journals, analysis, Balch & Bingham, Barack Obama, beer, Bentley, business, craft brew, Democrats, economy, entpreneurship, facts, Fail, fail blog, failure, Florence City Schools, GOP, government, Governor Bentley, health, healthcare, International Paper, jobs, loss, microbrew, Microbrewery, money, news, Oakwood University, Pilgrim, policy, politics, record, Republican, Robert Bentley, Robert J. Bentley, Sara Lee Corporation, tax, taxes, Terry Sewell, university, Wall Street, Wayne Farms | 1 Comment »
Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Saturday, September 14, 2013
More than a few folks recall the significant benefit the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) provided this nation, and how our nation’s infrastructure (roads, waterways, electrical power grid, etc.) grew during that time. In Monte Sano State Park, in Huntsville, Alabama, there are cabins which are STILL standing, and which are in EXCELLENT repair, that were constructed by the CCC. It is testament to their quality, and to the effort to put people to work in this nation in the aftermath of the Great Depression.
Sadly, this largely Republican-led, “just-say-no” congress has done NOTHING to produce or encourage any type of jobs. That is to say, they have written NO BILLS to promote, encourage or stimulate hiring. NONE.
And yet, there is a sure-fire, time-tested way to get folks back to work – and what is being done about it?
Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in - My Hometown is the sweetest place I know, - Politics... that "dirty" little "game" that first begins in the home. | Tagged: Civilian Conservation Corps, economics, economy, George Miller, Great Depression, jobs, John Kline, money, Monte Sano State Park, policy, politics, Republican, United States, United States House Committee on Education and the Workforce | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Saturday, August 24, 2013
I may step on a few toes with my next remark, but I can always apologize, and ask forgiveness if it so be the case that my remarks are found offensive.
However, suffice it to say, that our nation’s Congress, has, for at least the past 20 years, or so – and even moreso in the past decade plus – embarked upon a very Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in - Business... None of yours, - Did they REALLY say that?, - Faith, Religion, Goodness - What is the Soul of a man? | Tagged: Africa, Ancient, Ancient Egypt, Big Business, business, corporation, Democrat, Egypt, employees, enterprise, entrepreneurship, faith, Golden Parachute, GOP, government, Hebrew, Hebrew language, Hebrews, history, jobs, money, Moses, people, Pharaoh, policy, politics, profit, prophet, religion, Republican, Seychelles, tax, United States, values | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Sunday, August 4, 2013
Educational attainment in the world, 1950–2010
Robert Barro, Jong-Wha Lee, 18 May 2010
Empirical investigations of the role of human capital require accurate measures across countries and over time. This column describes a new dataset on educational attainment for 146 countries at 5-year intervals from 1950 to 2010. The new data, freely available online, use more information and better methodology than existing datasets. Among the many new results is that the rate of return to an additional year of schooling on output is quite high – ranging from 5% to 12%.
It is widely accepted that human capital, particularly attained through education, is crucial to economic progress. An increase in the number of well-educated people implies a higher level of labour productivity and a greater ability to absorb advanced technology from developed countries (Acemoglu 2009). Empirical investigations of the role of human capital require accurate and internationally-comparable measures of human capital across countries and over time.
Our earlier studies (1993, 1996, and 2001) constructed measures of educational attainment of the adult population for a broad group of countries. This column introduces a new data set (available at barrolee.com) providing improved estimates for 146 countries at 5-year intervals from 1950 to 2010. The data are Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in - Even MORE Uncategorized!, - Read 'em and weep: The Daily News | Tagged: advancement, analysis, Asia-Pacific, Asian Development Bank, Barro, commerce, economists, economy, education, historical, history, Human capital, Journal of Monetary Economics, labor, modern history, policy, Rate of return, research, Robert Barro, statistics, Sub-Saharan Africa, Technology | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Sunday, July 28, 2013
Chattanooga is an old, old, old, old city.
It’s older than Civil War old.
Throughout the city there are narrow streets, many (if not most) of which need widening and repaving. Interstate 24, which leads into the city, is in sore need of widening. Because of the twisting, winding route it takes as it leads into, through and around the city and it’s numerous mountains and hills, it can be treacherous. When any slowdown for any reason occurs, traffic can be backed up for 15-20 miles, or more. When wrecks occur on that route, they’re often fatal, and create even longer delays. The only other major route into the city is US Highway 72. There is no bypass. If there are problems on either of those two routes, significant delays can take hours. (See a Google Map of the area.)
It has a university – University of Tennessee, Chattanooga – with other smaller colleges & universities nearby (Lee University, in Cleveland & Southern Adventist University, in Collegedale). One of three hospitals in the area (each which has numerous campuses) Erlanger, is a Level One Trauma Center, and teaching hospital for the College of Medicine at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. Memorial Hospital, is part of the Catholic Health Initiatives system, and is a teaching hospital, while Parkridge Hospital is operated by TriStar Health.
Because of industrial waste released by area manufacturing, in 1969, Chattanooga had the filthiest air in the nation. The Tennessee River which serves as a boundary for the area was equally polluted. For many years, troubles GALORE plagued the city, including economic inequality, poor race relations, deteriorating economic infrastructure, rapid population decline, and departure of industry.
Recognizing that the city and area residents were suffering a slow suicide, officials and interested citizens embarked upon a plan to revitalize the area, including cleaning up industrial waste, reinvigorating the economy with employment opportunity, and looking forward, rather than backward.
EPB (Electric Power Board), one of the public utilities in the area, came upon an idea to infuse their power grid with Fiber Optic cable to enable better response times, to pinpoint areas of concern, and to re-route electricity during power outages when lines were downed by trees or severe weather. They faced stiff opposition in the form of legal fights by Comcast (principally), yet were successful in overcoming. In turn, they sold High Speed fiber optic Internet Connectivity to area residents at a significantly reduced cost in comparison to the Wall-Street-traded Comcast. They also provide better service.
While the area’s renaissance is by no means complete, it has advanced with enormously significant strides.
Obama to visit uneven Chattanooga area recovery
published Saturday, July 27th, 2013
Mike Pare, Deputy Business Editor, Chattanooga Times Free Press; MPare@ TimesFreePress.com phone: (423) 757-6318
by Mike Pare
When President Barack Obama flies into Chattanooga on Tuesday to tout new economic initiatives, he’ll see a city recognized in a national study as a metro area emerging from the recession as an “economic frontrunner.”
Area Development, a national business magazine covering site selection and relocation, ranked metro Chattanooga at No. 86 — in the top quarter — among 380 metro areas examined for the study titled “Leading Locations for 2013.”
While in Chattanooga Obama is expected to unveil new ways to spur the nation’s sluggish economic recovery.
At the Amazon distribution center at Enterprise South industrial park, the president will see a growing, state-of-the-art distribution facility with 1,800 full-time jobs created since 2011. The Chattanooga facility, along with Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in - Business... None of yours, - My Hometown is the sweetest place I know, - Politics... that "dirty" little "game" that first begins in the home., - Read 'em and weep: The Daily News | Tagged: Alabama, Amazon, Atlanta, Barack Obama, Bristol, business, center, CEO, CHA, Chattanooga, Chattanooga Tennessee, Chattanooga Times Free Press, CLEVELAND, Columbus, connectivity, Dalton, Democrat, Democratic, economic, economy, enterprise, EPB, fiber optics, fulfillment, Georgia, high speed Internet, Huntsville, Indiana, Internet, Jeff Bezos, jobs, Kingston, Knoxville, living, Louisiana, manufacturing, Memphis, money, Nashville, Nooga, Obama, Odessa, policy, politics, president, private enterprise, region, regional, Rome, South, southern, taxes, Tennessee, Texas, TN, TVA, United States, University of Tennessee, Volkswagen, wages | 2 Comments »
Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Saturday, May 25, 2013
Ross Perot was right.
Scene: 1992 Presidential Debate: Former Arkansas Governor William Jefferson Clinton – D, President George H. W. Bush – R, and Ross Perot – I.
White Male Audience Member: Yes, I’d like to direct my question to Mr. Perot. What will you do, as President, to open foreign markets to fair competiton from American business, and to stop unfair competition here at home from foreign countries, so that we can bring jobs back to the United States?
Ross Perot: That’s right at the top of my agenda.
We’ve shipped millions of jobs overseas, and uh… we have a strained situation because we have a process in Washington, where after you’ve served for a while, you cash in, become a foreign lobbyist, make $30,000 a month, then take a leave, work on presidential campaigns, make sure you got good contacts, and then go back out.
And if you just want to get down to brass tacks, the first thing you ought to do is get all these folks who got these one-way trade agreements that we’ve negotiated over the years, and say ‘fellas, we’ll take the same deal we gave you.’ And they’ll gridlock right at that point, because, Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in - Business... None of yours, - Did they REALLY say that?, - Politics... that "dirty" little "game" that first begins in the home. | Tagged: 1992, Bill Clinton, debate, economy, employers, George H.W. Bush, Giant sucking sound, government, history, jobs, labor, money, Perot, policy, president, presidential, Ross Perot, United States, Washington, Washington D.C., Washington DC, worker | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Sunday, April 21, 2013
I wouldn’t have believed it had I not read it for myself from the official Congressional website.
U.S. Representative Martha Roby, a Republican from Alabama’s 2d Congressional District has introduced H.R. 1406, officially named the “Working Families Flexibility Act of 2013″ which would END the requirement of the Fair Labor Standards Act for employers to pay Time-and-a-Half to employees for every hour worked over 40 in one week.
The Congressional Budget Office has reported on the bill, and in part wrote that: Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in - Lost In Space: TOTALLY Discombobulated, - Politics... that "dirty" little "game" that first begins in the home. | Tagged: Alabama, cheat, child labor, compensation, Congressional Budget Office, deception, Egypt, employees, Fair Labor Standards Act, family, GOP, governance, government, Hewlett-Packard, industrialist, labor, law, Let my people go., liars, management, Martha Roby, Moses, offshore, offshoring, overtime, overtime pay, pay, Pharaoh, policy, poll, radical, rate, Republican, Right to Work, Robber Baron, Robber Barons, Roby, Southen Poverty Law Center, steal, taxes, Tea Party movement, theft, theives, Time-and-a-half, unfriendly, United States, United States House of Representatives, unjust, weasel, Wikipedia | 153 Comments »
Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, April 15, 2013
Las Vegas has the highest metropolitan suicide rate in the U.S.
“I’ll add that there’s one more feature here, of Las Vegas, which I think bears mentioning. And that is what I kinda’ think of as a sort of “frontier culture” mentality among residents, and I think, even among visitors.
“That Las Vegas is this sort of place of place of total license. You know… its the ‘Wild West,’ it’s an open frontier for all kinds of immorality and exploration of vice, and… the entire self-branding of Las Vegas as this place where that is not only tolerated, but actually sanctioned.
“You know, the “What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas” kind of mentality – produces, I think, a kind of… sort of libertarian ethos of ‘go it alone, do it yourself.’ And help seeking in this sort of framework is perhaps not accepted or valorized the way it is other parts of the country.
“These kind of cultural arguments are always very hard to make. They always sound deeply unscientific. But, in a lot ways, I think that’s exactly where a lot of the explanatory power comes from… is in this understanding the culture and values underlying people’s behavioral sense.”
– Matt Wray, sociologist, Temple University, Philadelphia, PA, and co-author of a 2008 paper entitled “Leaving Las Vegas: Exposure to Las Vegas and Risk of Suicide” / excerpted from Freakonomics Radio, episode #92 “Gambling With Your Life,” released April 27, 2011
Of late, attention has been increasingly given to the suicide rate of veterans returning home from the horrors of war in the Middle East, specifically, from their numerous extended tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan.
While in retrospect, many acknowledge that Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in - Faith, Religion, Goodness - What is the Soul of a man? | Tagged: 2003 invasion of Iraq, Afghanistan, Air Force, Al Qaeda, Arabian Peninsula, Army, budget, CNN, death, Death of Osama bin Laden, Democrat, drones, Esquire, expense, Explanatory power, extremism, faith, George W. Bush, government, GWOT, help, insanity, Iraq, Las Vegas, Las Vegas Nevada, Leaving Las Vegas, Libertarian, List of countries by suicide rate, Matt Wray, mental health, Middle East, military, news, Osama bin Laden, Pakistan, Peter Bergen, Philadelphia, policy, politics, radical, religion, Republican, soldier, spending, Taliban, Temple University, terror, United States, United States Naval Special Warfare Development Group, USA, Vega, Vegas, war, wouned warrior | Leave a Comment »