ssǝɹddns ɹou ɹɐǝɟ ɹǝɥʇıǝu plnoʍ ʎʇǝıɔos ǝǝɹɟ ʎlnɹʇ ɐ ʇɐɥʇ ƃuıʇnɔolɯnɔɹıɔ suıɐʇuoɔ ǝʇıs sıɥʇ



Thursday, May 31, 2012

DA: I'd tell you, but then I'd have to...

Eight weeks ago, somebody got murdered in Wilkes-Barre.

As a direct result, just yesterday, somebody (a minor) who claimed to be with the victim at the time of said murder was taken away in handcuffs.

Yet, astonishingly, we are not yet allowed to know the particulars.

I know not of retooled juvenile laws and the like. But I do know that when a heart-sickened community convulses after an unimaginable death tears upon it's worn and faded fabric, that community demands answers, not legalese and and evasive double-speak.

A gun was fired.

A boy died.

A double-secret courthouse hearing was held.

The only reported eye-witness to the murder was taken away in cuffs.

So now all that's required is to have the pig-tailed district attorney take a couple of big chick steps.

I do understand that this is Luzerne County, where openness and truth play like a skinhead metal band at a gay wedding reception.

But gunplay and resulting deaths should not be shrouded in secrecy for any length of time, no matter what and no matter the age of the players.

No matter how it's spun, this is as confusing as it is troubling. I know it. You know it.

Later

When Yoko became the second-most hated person

I waited a decade...

Still pisses me off.

Later

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Waco documentary

Agree, disagree...whatever.

“Waco - Rules of Engagement”

Parts 2 through 6 can be linked to in the view box at the conclusion of this first installment.

I derived two disturbing things from this interesting documentary.

The first was how completely sidetracked and out-of-the-loop people can get when they become totally absorbed in ancient religious rule books, the authors of which are still the subject of centuries-old debates.

Secondly, I was struck by the carved-in-stone correct notion that only the people toting the Bibles could be surrounded, put under military siege for 51 politically-embarrassing days and then later executed at the hand of Fedrule agents in the land of the free---the United States. All other religious persuasions and perversions and obvious excesses are to be tolerated no matter what, they tell us, while those heartland red-state folks, steadfast adherents of whichever version of the Bible are deemed to be enemies of the (Democrats) state.

In a perfect world, Bill Clinton and Janet Reno head to the same hoosegow after the congressional hearings.

It all makes Ruby Ridge look like fun.

And it all makes the Oklahoma City bombing seem totally avoidable.

Later

Monday, May 28, 2012

My Body of Water

Pennsylvania has Tom Corbett.

New York has celebrity.

If you have not seen Kayak Dude's latest video (not the one I embedded), please visit his site and have a look.

Later

Fatal drift

On a typical "three-day" holiday weekend, I replace the batteries in my portable police scanner.

When the hoi-polloi know they have that extra day and/or night by which to consume enough alcohol to inebriate themselves two or three times over, Scanner Land can be wildly entertaining.

That said, you will never see a better argument for the wearing of seatbelts than you will when this minute-long video switches to slow-motion.

No paramedics needed with that one. No need to "put an X on it." That's a 10-45...Notify coroner.

At the risk of sounding like an Ad Council devotee, Buckle Up!

Later

KD in the news (again)

This is a story that might be unparalleled throughout the entirety of these United States.

Although, I imagine it'd be damn near impossible to verify.

Strong family ties with Memorial Day parade

If today's weather is right, Don Williams will march down Wyoming Avenue playing a fife that is older than anyone watching the parade - an instrument a Union soldier used in the Civil War more than 150 years ago.

Later

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Prometheus

For me, it started with Arthur C. Clarke.

One more week and a couple of days...June 8...Prometheus, the Alien prequel.

I'll see you there.

Later

Dawn of the Dead?

Reports are coming in of cannibals eating people in the streets.

The Mayans suck!

Later

Exclusive video from KD

Our intrepid reporter and protector of the watershed---Kayak Dude---sent along the following video culled from Leroy Township, Bradford County.

There has been a rather significant gas migration event up north, but I guess it's too far away for the local press to travel to for breaking news.

What is that mucky muck? Migrated sludge? Flowback water?

Not to worry yourselves, though. As we have been told time and again, fracking has no detrimental environmental effects.

Later

"It's like the Earth is vomiting in our yard."

A video by Scott Cannon...

You can take the full tour by following the links at the conclusion of the video.

Later

Cookout Day

Yep, cookout today. Perhaps a robust bikeabout. MLB later on. And, of course, some domestically-produced fermented weeds.

The full movie can be linked to when the trailer ends.

Vietnam: The Sequel. Time to come home.

Later

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Unscientific polling

Too much time has been squandered on the most important debate of the past half century: Laurie Partridge or Marcia Brady?

With Marcia being the clear winner in my deteriorating mind, it's time we revisit other equally important matters. This is big, so sit up and pay strict attention.

Ginger or Maryanne?

Later

Bain this!

So Bill Maher--the wise-ass pipsqueak--wants to know why conservatives are so mad at pothead Barry? Bill, you pussy, it's not becasue he's black, but nice try. But it is partly because he pretended to be Green. Er, he lied.

As an initial waypoint, how about the outright corruption/stimulus package?

Forget Bain — Obama’s public-equity record is the real scandal

Amazingly, Obama has declared that all the projects received funding “based solely on their merits.” But as Hoover Institution scholar Peter Schweizer reported in his book, “Throw Them All Out,” fully 71 percent of the Obama Energy Department’s grants and loans went to “individuals who were bundlers, members of Obama’s National Finance Committee, or large donors to the Democratic Party.” Collectively, these Obama cronies raised $457,834 for his campaign, and they were in turn approved for grants or loans of nearly $11.35 billion. Obama said this week it’s not the president’s job “to make a lot of money for investors.” Well, he sure seems to have made a lot of (taxpayer) money for investors in his political machine.

Anybody used much ecotricity lately?

Later

Friday, May 25, 2012

U-Haul anticipating record sales in Scranton?

Stick a fork in her, because Scranton is all but done.

Revised recovery plan could hike taxes 78% by 2015

Scranton Mayor Chris Doherty on Thursday unveiled a revised recovery plan that proposes a 78 percent tax increase over the next three years.

And that's just for starters. Additional tax increases that could range anywhere from 15 to 31 percent over the life of an eight-year loan also will be necessary to account for a landmark state Supreme Court ruling last year regarding arbitration awards that favored the city's police and fire unions, according to Mr. Doherty and city Business Administrator Ryan McGowan.

The proposal also calls for new commuter and amusement taxes and higher license, permit and garbage fees, as well as the following: selling the city's stormwater conveyance system; selling delinquent taxes and trash fees; selling ad space on city facilities; leasing parking concessions; cutting expenses by 10 percent; and generating health care savings by asking police and firefighters to contribute toward health benefits.

For many years now, I’ve listened to WILK hosts and callers alike rip Wilkes-Barre and it’s elected and appointed management a new one. And, Scranton? The ACT 47 Molotov cocktail in persistent search of a match? Nary a mention.

Don’t misunderstand me, I am fully cognizant of the fact that Wilkes-Barre has just as many festering wounds as the next town wrestling with societal decay. And it’s elected management has come under heavy fire from it’s would-be replacements posing as selfless activists for borderline ethical lapses.

But I knew all along that the ticking financial time-bomb in Scranton would explode in due time. When the Tax Anticipation Notes started flying of late, I knew the end was near. And that proverbial ticking time-bomb has finally exploded like a 30,000-pound MOAB on Tora Bora.

So, going forward, for the purposes of participating in talk radio, remember: Scranton all good, Wilkes-Barre all bad.

I’d enjoy a hearty chortle at this tragic point if I could, but instead I feel for the residents of Scranton who were taught long, long ago to vote for the party and not the candidate.

Now let the out-migration begin!

Later

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Generation YT

This here embedded video was captured in Kiev, Ukraine.

Although, it was pretty easy to tell from the surrounding landscape that this is the site of a former Soviet Bloc country, because of all of the tell-tale, cookie-cutter high-rise dormitories in lieu of homes. Basically, the Soviet Union was one giant public housing project with inaccurate nukes.

Each according to their government-prescribed needs. Right, Barry?

Anywho, this ill-advised stunt and the tens of thousands of others just like it uploaded to the Internet are the products of Generation YT (YouTube), the phalanx of misguided kids who seek short-lived affirmation in all of the wrong places.

Don’t cry for him when he one day goes splat!

Later

Leroy gone Dimmock

Leroy Township is on the map!

April, 2011: Bradford County shale well spews fluids

May 2012: DEP Issues Statement On Bradford County Methane Migration Investigation

The Depart­ment of Envi­ron­men­tal Pro­tec­tion has sent StateImpact Pennsylvania a statement about its methane migration investigation in Leroy Township, Bradford County:

The Department of Environmental Protection and Chesapeake Energy are continuing to investigate the source or sources of methane gas that has been detected in the head­space of three private wells in Leroy Township, Bradford County. All three wells have been vented and the homes have had methane monitoring alarms installed by Chesapeake. A mobile water treatment unit has been installed at one residence, a temporary water supply tank has been provided at another residence and bottled water is being provided to two additional residences.

Chesapeake’s Morse well pad contains two wells and is about one-half mile from the impacted private wells.

On May 22, DEP Oil and Gas Program staff collected isotopic gas samples at both of these wells. Gas bubbling continues in a wetland and two small tributaries to Towanda Creek.

On May 23, DEP staff monitored the methane-impacted wells and checked the homes for the presence of methane gas. Chesapeake’s consultant continues to assess other private wells in close proximity to the Morse well pad and the methane-impacted private wells. The investigation is on-going.

Yeah, you already know what the official line will be…

Move along. Move along. There’s nothing to see here. It’s all over. Now move along, people.

Later

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Mid-week one-liners

Despite the fact that he’s a Philthydumpia Phillies fan, I have this longtime friend who’s had way too much fun of late by calling the Atlanta Braves the Buffalo Bills of baseball. Oh, gee. Hurt me, why don’t you?

In response to his tired taunts, I recently asked him how many world championships the current version of the PhilDumpias have won since they got to collecting Cy Young winners?

Uh, yeah. That’s what I thought.

As of this very moment, the Dumpias have no offense, and the Cy Young winners couldn’t collectively shine Cy Young’s leather jock.

Welcome to Buffalo, Philthydumpia.

The obviously overmatched president of these United States said being president is making sure that "everybody in the country has a fair shot."

Translation: The hard-working productive will continue to unduly suffer for the sake of the generational unproductive who never even tried to reach out for the proverbial brass ring.

The man is to cluelessness what stagflation will be to his eventual undoing.

War On Women. Osama. Gay Marriage. Bain Capital. Deflect, deflect, deflect. Anything but an examination of his hapless efforts.

Can’t wait 'til the November electoral spanking.

I don’t think I’ve ever linked to this site, but here goes.

From Politics in Northeastern Pennsylvania: What World Does Obama Live in?

Lots of good coal-related facts as they pertain to Pennsylvania.

And as we all know by now, Barry wants to cap-and-trade coal out of existence. His words, not mine.

The man is to cluelessness what coal is to the generation of electricity.

The monstrous new emergency room building at General Hospital is nearing the end of the construction phase and is soon-to-be taking patients.

Although, they tell me that just as soon as the finishing touches are put on the new ER building, the construction of an adjacent 8-story tower will immediately commence.

So, as I said many moons ago, the Nord End continues to shrink while General Hospital continues to grow. While the many towers rise, the one-time homesteads disappear from the landscape.

Nord General can’t be that far off.

In closing, is Facebook too big to fail?

I sure hope not.

Later

1997 BoA shootout audio

Being a resident of "Scanner Land," I've heard plenty of wild, crazy and amusing things over the years. I've also heard a few disturbing things, such as a responding medic announcing that he had encountered a child hanging in a basement at a murder scene.

Anyway, this here video clip includes the frantic police chatter that went out over the police scanner during the 1997 North Hollywood shootout following the Bank of America robbery.

It clocks out at 13:17, but stick with it...

Later

Monday, May 21, 2012

Social Studies for Dummies

Boy, sure beats droning on and on about India and Pakistan like we did back in the day.

Oh, wait. According to the all-knowing one-term wonder, it's Pock-e-ston.

Later

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Sunday night musings

No, I ain't dead. Sorry to get your hopes up. I merely took a few days off from all of this Internet tomfoolery so as to chill and recharge just a tad.

They, whoever they are, say that termites cause in excess of $5 billion in property damage in the continental United States each and every year. When I got home yesterday afternoon, I felt as if I had personally responded to every one of those damage claims. For the past fifteen months, ever since the Pest Control Technology ‘technician of the year’ issue in which I was lauded, it has been rugged. Great sales tools, these awards.

I see the clueless anarchists are at it again, this time in Chicago. Somebody said somebody was meeting somewhere, so life’s slackers were off in hopes of securing some useless gotcha videos, while the city absorbs tens of thousands in overtime costs as a result.

What that video and the countless others like it say to me is that we need more police officers on the streets, and police officers sporting far, far less restraint. Injure just a few of them, and the rest will run home to cuddle with their skateboards.

And don’t give me any jive feedback on all of this needless protesting. Back when I could have been protesting just for the sport and the fun of it, I was instead managing a business, raising three kids and hanging out at a Little League field. You know, getting on with things by pretending to be an adult.

Locally, I see our new county executive, Robert Lawton, is not real keen on wasting millions upon millions of taxpayer dollars.

To the pathetic multitudes of hangers-on who told us that government cannot be run like a business, please mix alcohol and prescription drugs in large quantities. Do it.

And what’s this? Our former commissioner turned county councilman is taking the saving of millions of taxpayer dollars very hard? Uh, taking it personally?

Wow! Somebody better check on the ratio of methane to oxygen in the courthouse atmosphere before our entire legislative body goes all loopy on us.

Sometime Tuesday, through my employer, I will be taking receipt of a new Ford 250/XL. In addition, it will be sporting our new paint scheme as well as the new logo. Those light blue trucks with the god awful stripes, those rolling billboards are being rapidly replaced. In fact, we are replacing our entire fleet. How’s that for a capital outlay?

Yes, “America’s Finest” has spread from it’s base of Reading, Pennsylvania into 33 states, Mexico and now Canada. We are now a North American company.

And finally, to our city council…business trips without receipts for reimbursement upon return is a huge no-no no matter which way it’s twisted all pretzel-like.

I know. I know. A government cannot be run like a business. Nope.

Not until it’s forced to, that is.

Later

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Summer

Donna Summer was the one and only disco artist I respected. Very talented lady.

And the 12-inch version of ‘I Feel Love’ was the only disco/dance record I ever bought. What did Zappa say? And a couple of quarts of beer would fix it so the intonation would not offend your ear.

The making of ‘I Feel Love’

Later

More Dem pablum up in smoke

Just like that lady on WILK always says, there’s no voter fraud in the United States.

Voter fraud allegations in mayoral election rock New Mexico city

Among the allegations are charges that city workers registered people who didn't even live in New Mexico and convinced them to vote for Salinas during early voting.

In addition, absentee ballot applications were allegedly intercepted before reaching the city clerk, so that Salinas’ opponents could not hand them out to their supporters.

"They pressured the poor, old people, the people who don't know English. They were forced to sign without knowing what they were signing. It’s incredible, it’s disgusting," mayoral candidate Gerardo Hernandez told Fox News.

Yeah, and judges don't trade kids for cash.

This one is fun.

First he told us that he never heard a word his preacher said for twenty years. Now he’ll feign to tell us that he never read his own mini-biographies.

And the folks with the purple-stained lips, who have so much invested in the prevaricator-in-chief, will snarl at anyone who suggests that said prevaricator ought to be stripped of his arrogance and immediately shipped back to his natural homeland.

Obama’s Lit Agency Used 'Born in Kenya' Bio Until 2007

Archive.org shows that the Dystel website used the following biography for Obama as of April 3, 2007:

BARACK OBAMA is the junior Democratic senator from Illinois and was the dynamic keynote speaker at the 2004 Democratic National Convention. He was also the first African-American president of the Harvard Law Review. He was born in Kenya to an American anthropologist and a Kenyan finance minister and was raised in Indonesia, Hawaii, and Chicago. His first book, DREAMS FROM MY FATHER: A STORY OF RACE AND INHERITANCE, has been a long time New York Times bestseller.

Obama launched his presidential campaign in February 2007.

By April 21, 2007, the Obama bio had been changed to state that Obama was born in Hawaii:

BARACK OBAMA is the junior Democratic senator from Illinois and was the dynamic keynote speaker at the 2004 Democratic National Convention. He was also the first African-American president of the Harvard Law Review. He was born in Hawaii to an American anthropologist and a Kenyan finance minister and was raised in Indonesia, Hawaii, and Chicago. His first book, DREAMS FROM MY FATHER: A STORY OF RACE AND INHERITANCE, has been a long time New York Times bestseller.

Favorability ratings, baby.

Later

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Broken Promises

Best way to do it...use Barry's own blah, blah, blahing against him.

Later

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Politically stillborn

I'll readily admit to being unflappable on most days. Ask Wifey. No matter what may transpire; good, bad or a hair from being beyond horrible, my usual retort is "Whatever, man." She hates it.

Although, it should be noted that the touching of myself or any of my stuff draws a much different response.

Now, I just perused the PDF file from the Luzerne County Bureau of Elections which proves that I lost the tie for Ward 5 Republican Committee member when the jiggling of the electoral ping pong balls went down this past Friday. Okay, I'll type it. Whatever, man.

But what I found tugging my jaw down towards the floor was that I lost out to the GOP poll worker whom I had entrusted to distribute the write-in cards I was provided with.

Huh? What?

I guess he lined his ferret cage with those write-in cards.

Does that qualify as being 'dirty politics?'

Oh, well. Maybe the Greens will have me. All I'd have to do to become a Green committee person in excellent standing is show up wearing my pot leaf pin.

Off to the political graveyard with me. Politically stillborn, I was.

Later

1000 A.D. to present

This is like watching the geographical history of Europe unfold in fast-forward mode.

Quite the picture of stability, this Europe. And the Democrats see this as the model to be copied why?

Later

Monday, May 14, 2012

The burning mountain stands as a reminder

Six decades ago, coal mining in the Wyoming Valley came to an abrupt halt thanks to what is now called the Knox Mine disaster.

I've written before about how foreign and fascinating this culm-dotted landscape was to a kid visiting from Connecticut. And I've relayed how my grandfather scared the wits out of me with talk of how the ground would just suddenly open and swallow cars, poles, pets, houses, kids and what have you.

He told me about how the men (miners) were out of work en masse and spent many an hour at the corner beer gardens while their wives toiled away in garment factories. We'd sit on his front porch high on Guthrie Hill and he'd repeat his stories about the town that used to sit up there on the-then burning mountain spread out before me. But despite his many descriptive recountings of Laurel Run, the hows and whys of it's untimely bulldozing, the burning mountain was inconceievable to me no matter how many times it was explained to me.

To a sprat of seven or so, it resonated as such: A burning mountain? Only in Wilkes-Barre.

I took the above picture this afternoon on the road to Laurel Garden Estates.

Six decades later, the burning mountain still smolders.

But I'm supposed to believe that with the injecting of billions of gallons of proprietory chemicals, tainted water and sand into the ground, folks won't be bemoaning it's devastating effects six decades from now.

Fool me once...

Later

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Bikeabout

Seven and a half miles.

First time out under their own power. Not bad for an 8 and a 6-year-old. Two spills, but not a single whine.

Heredity, man.

Later

Video Flapdoodle

Groove Armada...Paper Romance.

Huh.

If I didn't know better, I'd swear this was Human League.

Later

Mother's Day: Beats flippin' eggs

When people have asked why I turned my back on the hospitality industry after a 17-year run, I oversimplify things by saying that I was tired of being married to a restaurant. And Mother’s Day is a great example of what that marriage was like.

At 14-years-old, and then 17 years later, Mother’s Day meant one thing to me and my compatriots---work. That is, that day was always far and above the busiest sales day of the year. While you and yours were treating dear old mom to breakfast or brunch or dinner, I was there in the store making sure it went well. Waiting line in, waiting line out. Year-in, year-out. A hellacious day.

But as I approached my 31st birthday, I had this premature mid-life crisis which had my head filled with all sorts of intemperate and selfish thoughts. I wondered what it would be like to enjoy a work-free weekend like those normal people did. And I fantasized about being the customer on a holiday, not a proprietor. And I had a hankering to watch The New York Football Giants every Sunday, just like I had done before I was drafted into the high-volume maelstrom that was the kitchen at Percy A. Brown & Co.: Foods of Distinction.

So, despite the warnings and protestations of those of a similar industry rank, I called the division office and gave the top dog a three-week notice---I quit.

And ever since, I’ve enjoyed my weekends off. I have spent every holiday since with family and friends, not customers. Obviously, you ought not interrupt me when those aforementioned gridiron warriors are engaged in battle. Still though, even with the divorce from the restaurant finalized, Mother’s Day still came up flat since my mother had passed away two years before said divorce.

Ironically, it was her passing that shook me to my very core and brought on that soul-searching that felt like a crisis. If she hadn’t passed away when she did, I am firmly convinced that I would be bailing out my hung over short-order cooks at this very moment. As I said, waiting line in, waiting line out. Year-in, year-out. While I dearly miss her, I will never miss that.

It’s bittersweet enough to make me want to go and have a nice one-way conversation with her overpriced headstone. But as I have done on each and every Mother’s Day since 1988, I’ll take a pass on that. See, I ain't got no need for tears.

In keeping with the selfishness bit, I think I'll fire up a bicycle and wander aimlessly throughout the town.

Beats flippin' eggs.

Later

Friday, May 11, 2012

Avery's boo-boo

The littlest guy---Avery Jayce Cour---broke his arm.

He's only 4-years-old and he's been done violently wrong by a publicly-owned playground. I'd sue, but most of the self-absorbed lawyers have gone off to Congress in search of riches and sex-crazed interns. That's one of the reasons why the United States is fast going the way of the Roman Empire. Only, in this sorry case, the axe-wielding Barbarians came from within our very midst.

All of that aside, understand that once you've done away with me, my offspring and their many offspring will still need to be reckoned with.

I didn't mean to frighten you, but there it is.

G'nite

Evolving all over again

I copied this from somewhere, although the where escapes me now.

Sorry, but I was jumping in and out of fantasy (baseball) last night, so the reality part comes up somewhat lacking.

In fact, Obama has not “evolved”—he has changed his position whenever his political fortunes required him to do so. Running for the Illinois state senate from a trendy area of Chicago in 1996, he was for gay marriage. “I favor legalizing same-sex marriages,” he wrote in answer to a questionnaire back then. In 2004, he was running for the U.S. Senate and needed to appeal to voters statewide. So he evolved, and favored civil unions but opposed homosexual “marriage.” In 2008, running for president, he said, “I believe marriage is between a man and a woman. I am not in favor of gay marriage.” Now in 2012, facing a tough reelection campaign where he needs energized supporters of gay “marriage” and has disappointed them with his refusal to give them his support, he is for it. To paraphrase John Kerry, he was for it before he was against it before he was for it again.

So, he was for it before he was dead-set against it. But now he's definately for it all over again because the coming landslide election loss needs to be staved off at any and all costs.

As the months pass and the internal polling numbers grow worse and worse, this pretender to the throne will bankrupt us to save his anorexic ass.

Bye, bye Barry. Please don't take all of us with you.

Buh-bye

The Tree-Hugger Anthem

Thirty...years...later...

Older and graying, Alex Lifeson still rules!

Later

Thursday, May 10, 2012

WBASD: A round of applause for the broke and the broken

Where would you dig, trench, auger, drill or bore?

RED denotes the approximate location of underground electric power lines, cable, conduit or lighting cables.

YELLOW denotes the approximate location of underground gas, oil, steam, petroleum or gaseous materials.

ORANGE denotes the approximate location of underground communication, alarm or signal lines, cables or conduit and traffic loops.

After the factoring of varying tolerance zones, are you feeling lucky? Brave?

I'm still here to post about it, so I nailed that one.

So, the retiring school board honcho recieved a standing ovation from the Wilkes-Barre Area School Board members that have not done time in the clink. What the fu>k are those people thinking?

And while the honcho retires with a 100% taxpayer-provided pension, a board member caught up in all of the celebratory hoopla dons a pair of wrap-around shades in an attempt to mock a scornful taxpayer. If you voted for him, admit it, you fu>ked up.

Meanwhile, the physical plant fails right before our eyes.

We need to remodel three high schools, or build a new one. But the school district can afford neither.

The school district is bleeding red ink, yet awards raises with each and every teacher contract.

Wilkes-Barre students repeatedly score well below average.

Teachers are forced to teach kids who can't speak a word of English.

Federal investigators have proven that teachers in the district were hired after they delivered brown bags stuffed with cash.

GAR athletes are ejected from District II sporting events with alarming regularity.

While the teachers and administrators accrue millions in unused/payable sick days, student-athletes, predominantly female, are forced to finance the purchase of their own uniforms.

The district solicitor overbilled the district with impunity, and now seems headed off to the hoosegow.

Just as soon as the board relented to taxpayer demands by ordering an independent forensic audit of all finances, the retiring honcho, fresh off his new 3-year contract extension ups and hints that he's retiring.

And what's the going rate on a teaching gig these days?

Yep. Standing O for everybody! Pats on the back all the way around! Great job! The Wilkes-Barre Area School District is the model that all others need to avoid like warts on genitals, but why sweat it?

A round of applause for the broke and the broken.

Now vote the lot of them into submission!

Later

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

An open letter from an ant

I wanted to comment on Gort’s most recent post: Bloggers are reluctant and accidental Committeemen

While I consider this comment from Gort about yours-not-so-truly to be spot-on accurate, it did crack me up…

If he does win the ping pong ball selection and follows through he will be as welcomed at a 6th District Republican Committee meeting like ants at a picnic.

Truth be told, when I spoke to the GOP honcho about getting involved, I did warn him of my strong, strong suspicion that most of the diehard Republicans in this one-party city “probably hate my ass.” Not that I care none too much.

In these here parts, this is all that is required of a resident to win an elected office: Register as a Democrat. Have all of your friends and relatives sign your petition. Buy a gross of election yard signs. Then win the primary and a victory over the Republican opponent (assuming there is one) in the fall is all but guaranteed. Voila!

And what I find most disturbing is that that most minimal of efforts is all it takes to keep the Luzerne County Republicans on an equal footing with the folks suffering with leprosy.

To recap: Register, signatures, yard signs, primary challenge and BANG!…you’re an elected “leader.” The GOP does not matter.

So, if I am to become an interloping ant at the GOP picnic, keep in mind that I am no soil ant. Rather, I am the carpenter ant with the powerful mandibles.

And if it’s not in the cards for me, fine. The Republicans in this town don’t need any assistance from me to continue on with their anemic ways.

If the strong-willed and energetic neophytes are not welcome, I would have to conclude that the party is not serious about growing from the ground up.

Later

'Death by Cop mauling' video

This was featured on CNN.com earlier today…

Trial ordered for 2 California police officers in beating death of homeless man

Thomas was beaten by police during the July 5, 2011, incident and died five days later, prosecutors say. The FBI is investigating civil rights violations in the case, as well.

Rackauckas has said that Thomas suffered brain injuries, facial fractures, rib fractures and extensive bruising and abrasions. The county coroner listed his manner of death as a homicide and said he died because he was unable to breathe after having his chest compressed.

Thanks to the vast Internet, the following is the surveillance camera video that is being used against the officers in this case.

The audio and video get better as the video plods along. The odd thing is, it’s obvious somebody was repositioning the camera as well as tweaking the audio as the incident unfolded.

I found the entire video interesting, but it turns physical just after the 14-minute mark iffin’ you want to skip the run-up and just watch someone being pounded to death.

You can clearly hear one of the cops claim "he's on something," which would explain the prolonged resistance a la super-human strength. But the story made no mention of any toxicology results just yet.

Back in the midnight shift era, I scrapped with a couple of different guys who were hopped up to the stratosphere on uber stimulants. Eyeballs about THIS wide, jumpy and easily agitated. It didn't go too well for them, but they did put on one helluva show before the eventual bloodletting, subsuquent arrests and rides to the emergency room.

Ugly stuff.

Later

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Zombie Park

This is eerie.

And creepy.

Spooky.

Downright post-apocalyptic.

Yet, it’s just pictures of abandoned theme parks.

Later

Monday, May 7, 2012

"Go to Hell"

This one got me to wondering whether Justin Vacula had seen it or not.

You know, free speech rights as they pertain to advertising by way of public transportation and all of that.

As for Barry, didn't he come from a place where he once ate insects and dogs?

Perhaps that billboard should have read,"Go back!"

Later

Traffic cameras in PA?

Here is some info I received from Jim up Wapwallopen way on both the red-light cameras( RLC's) and speed cameras in work zones in Pennsylvania. I’ve talked to him in person quite a few times, and he definitely knows what he’s talking about.

He believes we should be lobbying against these revenue generators due to fairness issues, traffic safety and traffic flow concerns. And I happen to agree with him.

His email is as follows…

There are various bills for each. Some are for Philly only, some statewide. I can provide more detail on all this, if you wish. The main thing is to get people to contact their state senator, state rep, Lieutenant Governor, Governor, media (talk radio, newspapers, blogs), and friends about this. Calling into talk shows and writing letters to the editor is also cool.

The National Motorists Association has a pile of info on all this, which is unbiased. Since you drive a lot, you should consider joining, as there are many perks.

National Motorists Association

His sample letter loaded with bullet points…

I am writing to ask that the bills authorizing red-light cameras be pulled, or at least not advanced to a floor vote. I would also likely to see ALL forms of camera-based traffic enforcement banned. These bills will inflict serious harm upon the residents of the state, despite claims to the contrary. I also do not want for any other tactics to be utilized to force these through, especially without proper debate, hearings, and public commentary. I have a few reasons I would like for you to consider:

1.Most tickets are for a non-complete stop while turning right on red (legal to turn.) This is NOT a safety issue at all.

2.Why not extend yellow duration on current lights? This is shown to reduce almost all “runnings”, as they are unintentional? People do not blow through lights on purpose, the yellow is too short.

3.Why not synchronize lights so you do not get a red on every block AND all yellows are of the same duration on a road?

4.Sensors can tell if a car is in an intersection, so won't change until clears.

5.Can use all-red interval, to clear cars from intersection.

6.Countdown timers can be used to tell time from yellow to red.

7.Cars get stuck in intersections taking left or right turns, plus they have to slow down significantly and cover more distance than going straight through.

8.Many tickets are for just barely going through, not 5 seconds after the red.

9.Can have view blocked by a large truck.

10.This will cause much unneeded stress, which is bad for safety.

11.There is an incentive to do this for revenue purposes. Why no community service or charitable contribution for a fine?

12.There is an incentive to make “short yellows”, or specifically shorten one yellow on a street where a camera is located.

13.Rules of evidence do not apply at the first appeal, which is REALLY abridging a driver's rights. The state is really looking to get sued here.

14.The bill defines what is discoverable later in court and also what is “right-to-know.” Also a good lawsuit here. You cannot even defend yourself!

15.You get a ticket weeks or months later for out-of-state people, so how is this legal?

You cannot remember it or realistically fight it. If from outside the area, you are home and cannot look at the scene. Due process?

16.Owner cited, not driver.

17.With rental cars or business cars, you will just be billed and cannot appeal.

18.PARALLEL ticketing, in that a cop ticket has different penalties than a camera. YOU CANNOT HAVE DIFFERENT PENALTIES FOR THE SAME VIOLATION, based upon enforcement method.

19.Even if you claim this is for safety, if a person gets a ticket 1-3 months after an incident, won't they drive recklessly until then? A cop can issue a ticket on the spot to change behavior NOW.

20.There have been widely reported cases of incorrect tickets being issued. It is assumed you are guilty.

21.How can you prove a person got the mailed ticket?

22.What is the definition of running the light? If you cross the STOP line by 1 inch when the light changes, it should be OK, but is it? What is different cities define running a light differently? Legal?

23.How can you tell from a snapshot picture what happened?

24.Drivers will avoid cities with cameras or at least the streets/intersections with them. Traffic volumes change year-to-year anyway. Even if camera companies showed crashes decreasing, it wouldn't matter, since people are driving in other places. I have seen studies showing INCREASES in crashes, though.

25.There are no clearly defined standards of what the qualifications are to work on the camera systems, what the calibration requirements are, which equipment can be used, who the people are authorized to install and maintain this equipment, etc. I also do not see this info being made available for a traffic case, should you appeal. They will likely block you from getting it.

Rear-end collisions may go up with cameras, as people slam the brakes or floor it. Many people will do crazy stuff, such as refuse to take a right on a red, stop if a truck is in front of them, refuse to take a turn if they could get stuck in an intersection, etc., for fear of tickets. This will cause more crashes, road rage, and traffic backups. Unconstitutional, as not accused by person and cannot confront in court. Incorrect tickets issued. Heavy lobbying from camera makers. As you see here, much of this is questionable regarding legality.

THE COMMONWEALTH RUNS THE RISK OF GETTING SUED HERE, due to knowingly doing something which will likely cause crashes. Also, if a person's rights are not respected, the state will get sued. Not just state court, but federal too. In federal civil rights cases, the guilty party must also pay legal expenses when they lose, I think. If the state must pay for multiple defenses for various parties in various courts, and there are compensatory damages, punitive damages, and possibly ticket refunds, voided contracts, etc., this could go into the millions.

I think the state should prioritize here and look for job growth, such as a law to ban employers who refuse to hire unemployed people, especially if out of work for awhile. This proposed law seems to be a sham, which will likely cause crashes, cost the state a FORTUNE when they are sued, and seems to be exclusively for revenue. PLEASE DO NOT MOVE THIS FORWARD AND SCRAP THE CAMERAS WE HAVE RIGHT NOW. Ban future camera usage.

Other areas are REMOVING cameras, why would we put them in?

People are paying attention to this, so if for no other reason, for the sake of your own reelection, I ask for your help in stopping these bad bills.

Thanks.

AP: We are in like Flint!. Er, shale

Yippie!!!

From The Marcellus Shale Coalition…

Benefits of Natural Gas Production Realized by “Every Single Pennsylvanian”

Canonsburg, PA – While a clear majority of Americans – facing stubbornly high national unemployment and underemployment rates – still believe that the U.S. economy is getting worse, according to new Rasmussen Reports research, positive, private sector-driven economic growth continues to buck trends across Appalachia.

One key factor? According to a new Associated Press analysis, Pennsylvania mineral owners and family famers received more than $400 million in Marcellus Shale royalty payments in 2011 alone, while the natural gas industry invested several billion dollars in the commonwealth during that time. As Fadel Gheit, a senior oil and gas analyst with Oppenheimer & Co., tells the AP, “We are producing record levels of natural gas.”

It’s lengthy, but give it a read.

As for my somehow benefiting, I’m the guy spinning cobalt and diamond-tipped drill bits for a living. And according to my continuing education in Excavation Safety 101...when methane exceeds 5% of any atmosphere in a confined space bereft of proper ventilation, a single spark from a drill bit could lead to one nasty explosion.

And what do we seem to be getting in spades since the fracking came to town? Uh, try methane showing up in the weirdest of places.

Yikes!

Later

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Jonesing without Joe

The on-air staff of WILK News/Talk/Facebook are truly a professional and multi-talented bunch.

While a few of them might prefer to see me and mine deported to the Falkland Islands, say, to iced-over South Georgia, I have no problem with giving them a well-deserved shout out.

But, since Joe Thomas went off to Italy and injured himself stomping on radiated grapes or some such thing, I've missed his wit as well as his common sense approach to most things.

Nancy, whiile we may love you and the rest of the crew, I need my daily fix of Joe.

Later

Eli on SNL

I wish my "little" brother could see this.

Later

Metal theft: A felony?

We’ve all grown accustomed to media reports of metal, copper and aluminum thefts. So much so, that reports of stolen manhole covers, storm sewer covers, electrical line components and railroad rails, just to name a few, have become commonplace.

So, while outright theft drives the much-ballyhooed recycling industry, the increasingly brazen metal thieves are putting not only theirs, but your lives at risk as well.

Just over a week ago, copper thieves blackened a wide swath of lower Luzerne County. An industry insider who shall go nameless told me the thieves hit a line that was powered down, but in very close proximity to a line carrying 21 billion jiggermasts (?) of electricity. In other words, they were fortunate they were not blackened like burned toast.

That same insider also told me that some thieves have taken to cutting their way through chain link fencing at utility substations where poles, wire and transformers are stored.

In this first video, British Railway Police visit scrap metal recyclers in hopes of educating them on tagiments and other identifiers, as well as hunt for stolen utility company property. Does the possibility of riding on vandalized rail lines give you pause for thought?

This next video gives you a pretty good idea of what happened in lower Luzerne County just a few days ago. And note that the guy who suffers from sleep apnea lost access to his machine when the power went down. Lives at risk, people.

And, tens of thousands of dollars in repair costs so that someone can cash-in on a couple of copper trinkets? That's unacceptable.

I read where one of our local state legislators authored a bill to clamp down on the sale of stolen metals to recycling dealers, but it was hampered or flawed or some such thing. Meanwhile, as you navigate your way through your busy day, hope that you don’t steer your way over the exact spot where a manhole cover or a storm sewer cover sat just hours ago.

A few years ago, while out enjoying a pre-dawn bicycle ride through the city, I encountered two idiots who were stripping aluminum siding from the side of an abandoned home and stuffing it into stolen shopping carts.

That was the only time I ever impersonated a police officer when I toned them with a Maglite while inventing new and exciting vulgarities on the fly. They scattered. But I’m sure they returned later on to finish what they had started.

And being that we have a recycler of metals situated just up the street a ways, I wondered if the recycler would have accepted a couple of shopping carts filled with aluminum siding from two idiots that looked as if they just arrived in town direct from Tent City, U.S.A. Nothing suspicious about that pair, heyna?

Sadly, I suspect that the two aluminum thieves had nary a problem cashing in on their most recent theft.

Anyway, these chuckleheads are endangering our lives on a regular basis. So when another one of them is found fried to a utility pole, put a medium-well sticker in between his lips, snicker at his stupidity and leave his body there to be scavenged by the birds. To hell with those who would put our lives at risk for a measly heroin score or another forty ounces of malt liquor.

Since a single metal theft could result in a death or multiple deaths, I say our local state legislator should push to have any and all metal thefts classified as being a felony. That's right, a felony.

And with that, I’m off to enjoy the latest in the Playboy audio book series.

Later

Occudorks in Oakland

Some people have way too much time on their hands.

I cannot imagine participating in such wasteful pursuits. At 25, I had a wife, three kids, a puppy, a kitten and a career to tend to. Oh, and a bi-weekly paycheck.

While watching this video, I was reminded of why I could never, ever be a police officer---my volcanic temper.

If it were my call to make, I'd order the beatings to commence with extreme prejudice.

Later

Saturday, May 5, 2012

All Dolled Up

Mom...wherever you are, I'm sorry.

And, no, I ain't deaf.


All Dolled Up: A New York Dolls Story by crazedigitalmovies

Buh-bye

Kent State or: Rock Tossing 101

Why do we and ours pack up and head off to college?

To further our education, or to blindly follow the leader of the rock tossers?

Should we and ours be studying, or following the Marxist (Democrat) leader on campus?

Four dead.

Needless.

Later

Casting of Lots

I just opened some snail mail sent to me by the Luzerne County Bureau of Elections, signed by Thomas P. Pizano.

RE: CASTING OF LOTS TO BREAK A TIE VOTE

As fate would have it, somebody or other wrote my name in as a write-in candidate for Member of the Republican County Committee for Wilkes-Barre City Ward 5. Or, perhaps a couple of people did as much. You got me by the dangling unmentionable parts.

And if I'm reading this right, my minimal chances of being a political power broker now hinge on the path of the bouncing electoral Ping Pong balls? Whatever.

The Casting of Lots? Wasn't that a Bible lesson or something? Shouldn't the self-aggrandizing, three-ring athiests demand a separation of Church and State-owned Ping Pong balls when they're not busily impressing themselves? Seems like it.

Anyway, this is where I'm at with all of this politico malarkey...

The Republicans in Wilkes-Barre as well as Luzerne County have been virtually invisible for generations on end without my dutiful help. And I figure they can go on being a complete non-factor without any and all assistance I may have provided them.

To be honest, until Renita Fennick finally comes back to her senses, her roots and her calling; I took my unexpected call to join the local GOP scrum as the equivalent of being General George Armstrong Custer's replacement buglar during that final gallop into history. Sad, but blatantly honest on my part.

The way I spy it, t'ain't no big thang.

Later

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Beyond Gas?

Is it getting ugly yet?

War Over Natural Gas About to Escalate: Sierra Club launches 'Beyond Gas' campaign

The rocky relationship between one of the world’s most influential environmental groups and the natural-gas industry is headed toward full-scale combat. The Sierra Club is intensifying its natural-gas reform campaign and renaming it “Beyond Gas,” a spin-off of its decade-old “Beyond Coal” campaign seeking the phaseout of coal-fired power plants.

Big Gas vs The Tree Huggers?

Hard to bet against Big Gas.

I'm just sayin'.

Later

Ray (1970-2007)

I cannot believe five years have passed since my bodyguard/little brother passed away. Five years.

Rarely a day goes by without something or other reminding me of him. The reminders are greatly appreciated before a wafting feeling of glumness quickly settles over me. And then I shake that glumness off and mush on.

As his father/brother, that’s pretty much what I raised him to do---mush on, boy! Nobody cares. So why fret, why whine, why cry or why waste time feeling sorry for yourself? Suck it up and mush on.

While I’ll admit that a piece of me went with him, I cry not. Instead, I mush on.

Wherever he is, he gets it.

Later

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

What do these two groups have in common?

Man, I have a real problem with this one.

County officials consider skate park

A skate park at the proposed site would benefit the county if it would become an alterative spot for skateboarders and bikers, who currently go to the River Common along the Susquehanna River. Skateboards are damaging sandstone construction by the park's Millennium Circle, Brozena said.

"The kids now have claimed the Millennium Circle," Brozena said.

So, due to financial restraints (to put it mildly), Luzerne County is reconsidering it’s previous commitment to renovating the train station in Wilkes-Barre. Luzerne County, due to financial restraints, has apparently decided to forego it’s previous claim of ownership of the Hotel Sterling property and essentially stick Wilkes-Barre’s residents with the cost of demolishing the dilapidated eyesore. Luzerne County, due to financial restraints, basically mothballed Moon Lake Park, which caused damage still not fully calculated.

Yet, Luzerne County is considering the creation of a new amenity, an amenity that would appeal to demographic group too microscopically small to even calculate. And the new amenity would essentially be a peace offering to the marauding “skateboarders and bikers” who always feel free to damage whatever they like.

I say we get the county detectives out of their bucolic McMansions and down to the River Common with a case of pepper spray at their disposal.

And after the lawless marauders are all expelled and sent home crying a river of cayenne pepper to their inattentive, self-centered parents, then we pave over the lot where the proposed skate park would have been.

Just what we need, another amenity we can ill afford to maintain.

Cripes!

And then we have this useless mumbo jumbo.

Occupy movement returns to W-B

WILKES-BARRE – Today is “Global Occupy” day, a hoped-for resurgence of last year’s efforts to call attention to economic disparity.

And while calls have gone out for mass demonstrations in cities as far flung as Torontoand Sydney, the Occupy Wilkes-Barre movement will be involved as well.

Economic disparity. Economic…disparity? Effing…economic…disparity!

Want to correct your so-called economic disparity? Yeah, then occupy a job fair!

I heard our well-known local professional protestor on Sue Henry’s WILK radio show today, and he made me want to demonstrate how many members of a drum circle I could kick the living sh*t out of.

He claimed he was poor. He claimed he has never really had health insurance benefits. He said he was an entrepreneur, or some such factually-challenged, diversionary bilge. But he went on to brag about his well-documented protesting exploits, his 50 or so hand-made protest signs and his “40-hours-a-week” of volunteerism.

Still though, he suffers as a result of the “economic disparity” in Amerika!

As for me, I work longer and harder than anyone should have to. Why? Because I like owning toys. Expensive toys. And the more, the better. Yes, Kurt. As you would say, I worship money. And I’ll tell you why.

I worship money because we only get one shot at this life of ours. If we’re lucky, we get what seem like fleeting decades as they rapidly pass us by. And if I only get one shot at this, I want to have some fun before I‘m cremated and unceremoniously dumped at Sandy Beach. And without a serious jingle in my pocket, the fun those expensive toys would provide me with will remain just out of my grasp.

And over time, I’ll resent the boys with the expensive toys I cannot afford. And I’ll grow to be bitter and resentful. And with too much time and pot on my hands, I’ll get caught up in the class warfare nonsense leading me to the nearest hardware store to purchase the paint needed for my protest signs.

Kurt, some of us bought alarm clocks, shaved every day, attended seminars, continued our educations, built resumes, ignored our supervisor’s shortcomings, endured the monotony, busted our jewels and learned how to get ahead just the slightest of bits. And now that we can afford a garage full of expensive toys, we need to be lectured to by life’s committed slackers?

Man, I don’t think so. Save that cowslip for some easily-impressed underage girls, or whomever it is that would run screaming from a random drug test and who now fills the ranks of the ambition-starved army of the occupation.

So, I ask again, what do these two groups have in common? Too much time on their hands? No purpose? No ambition? No drive? No job!?!

Come to think of it, maybe we’ll need more than one case of pepper spray.

Later