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Although the year is barely out, we do have our first nomination for the spot to be announced in December 2013. With the Kinder Morgan Deal now on hold semi-permanently, even they are pointing to our hero of the year as the man most responsible for allowing the port to remain state owned….
I can say it was Julius Cephas who was behind almost every move to combat the loss of good jobs at our port. He is being pointed out as the villain by the capitalists at Kinder Morgan. In Delaware’s eyes, that elevates his hero’s stature even more…
In truth, he is no villain and knowing him, he will probably shun the acclimations being made by us common folk as being our hero. In his eyes, he was just doing what needed to be done because no one else was there at that very moment to do it, and as that task swelled, it took a lot out of him….
Capitalists always need a villian. But it was the “truth” which actually is what killed this deal. Kinder Morgan WAS going to cut back on jobs, and their change of heart and blaming Julius instead of others, points exactly to the core of their problem with our port… …
People in Texas, do not understand unions. They simply can’t fathom or understand how there can be an actual law that lets people strike and shut you down, whenever you try to pay them less.. In their eyes, you work for what they want to give you and if it is too little, ..humph. go elsewhere….
The second culprit (after the “truth”), was our office of economic development. We gave Kinder Morgan too many “eager” signals that set us up as being seen as an easy pick. They truly thought they could waltz in, pick up a top notch East Coast Port for a song, and we would eagerly give it up… Again, that was because everything was done in secret. Had a meeting been forthcoming in the very beginning, Kinder Morgan might have moved on earlier when it became readily apparent, that southern Texas practices do not bode well in the Northeast…
Of course, being a corporation, they will blame the whistle blower. (Ironic since the whistle blower of Enron works for them).. Of course. It is not like they find anything immoral in taking a state asset for a song, in firing those skilled dock workers, and replace them with some Spanish speaking Texans who never even heard of a union….
And Julius did blow that whistle. . Like Rose on the Titanic, he took the whistle off of Jack (pun intended), and blew softly at first, then harder, and harder. Gradually the sound registered on others ears….
Without Julius, Bob Marshall would not have pushed through Senate Bill 3. Without Julius, most of the links showing up in everyone’s blog, would have not been found. Without Julius, the case for protecting workers would not have even made the rounds of the Norman Oliver show….
There were many helpers. Bob Marshall, Nancy Willing, Norman Oliver, Norinda, Helene Keeley, Al Mascitti, Liz Allen, John Kowalko, and (an other blogger too shy to be mentioned here). When one looks back through all of them one sees from everywhere, there in the center of the universe, stands a normal human being just like us, known to most … as Julius.
There will come a time when a better deal will arrive. Could even be this year. There will come a time when a suitor who does care about Delaware, who does care about unions, about human beings, about those businesses on the outside, and who will want to upgrade the port for everyone’s interest, not just their own… And that suitor in this day and age, could even come from abroad. Germany is very committed to union labor, to the environment, to being a good neighbor…. There are a great many possibilities out there that are immeasurable…. We definitely dodged a Texas bullet with this one….
When that suitor arrives… Julius’s stature will be set in cement…. For he did nothing really Herculean, except argue the truth… He didn’t lie. He didn’t connive, He didn’t threaten….
That was done by our office of economic development. Instead and unlike them, Julius told the truth. He told the truth to anyone who would listen. He told the truth enough, so many “did” listen….
And that is why, he deserves this nomination as Delaware’s Man of the Year. I know it is early into 2013, but great things just do not wait!!….
You will hear smears that Julius tubed the deal… I saw the letter and it is already out on WDEL and the Delawareonline’s News Journal… But as an impartial blogger, I can tell you exactly what killed this deal.
It was “the truth”. The truth of what this deal would cost us Delawareans….. is what turned the tide and caused the outcry that rose up against it….
If Kinder Morgan really wanted this deal, they could have easily said… “we are expanding and putting 5 new berths out into the river. We are buying the port for the bargain price of $5 billion. We need those businesses outside the fence because the jobs we get, will soon be too big, we can’t do it ourselves. We will keep the union just as it is; Wilmington needs good jobs and we are going to do our part…. We are also going to contribute into an emergency fund to be used for any spill or environmental accident that takes place under our tenure….
Kinder Morgan could have done any of those things, … and didn’t…. The blame doesn’t lie with Julius after all…. Especially when you consider the following…
This Economic Council erred on Fisker Automotive. Then it erred on Bloom Energy. Then it tried to Kinder Morgan us out of our port….. Someone rushed in with a save to make sure that last one didn’t happen.
That person is now hereby nominated for Delaware’s Person of the Year…….
When I was young, and thought I ruled the world, I went car shopping. it was about time for a new car, I wasn’t really in the market, but repairs were due and perhaps I could leap into a new car, and let the dealer fix up the old one on his dime…. I walked into the Honda dealer on Cleveland Avenue 15 minutes before closing , way back when Honda Accords were listed for $12,000….
I test drove then sat down with the salesman/manager (he negotiated back and forth with himself), and I said, it’s a nice car, but I can’t go over $8000. He got all exasperated, and flustered about, and said, .. “if you sign it tonight, I can give it to you for $8500…. Right here. Right now…” That scared me. I began to wonder what on earth was wrong with the car; still, I could have sold it the next day for $9000. But, it was too fast for me, and I said so. “I can’t sign tonight, I have to look at all the options including finances.”
I spent all night trying to find a way I’d lose money on that deal.. I couldn’t find one. So at 10:00 am I drove to Cleveland Ave, … the car was gone! I approached the manager I’d had the conversation the night before, and thinking they were prepping it up for me, I said … I decided to take that offer now…”
“Sorry, kid. That was for last night. It is gone. Would you like another vehicle?” I didn’t want to pay more than $8500. so i said “no:….
As a caveat 7 years later I saw that same model, same year, on the used car lot with a price tag for a used car, of $14,800…. My left shin was black from all the kicks I gave it…
To this day, I’ve always wondered why he went so low that one night? It has definitely been the best deal ever on a vehicle I’ve seen, and I haven’t figured out any rational reason why he would do such a thing…. Being the sales manager, the man in charge, it obviously had some import….
This relates to the fiscal cliff in this way. Just because an offer was made… doesn’t mean it has to stand. It was made for a limited time only.. That time frame is at the discretion of the seller.
Did you ever try to use a coupon that has expired? What happens? It doesn’t work.
If Republicans do not act on this in a timely way, the price goes back up… That way, they will have more respect, as did that young car buyer, of in the future, acting in a timely fashion…
If they don’t accept now and firm a deal, it is time to pull the offer. Later on, we can settle for keeping the tax cuts on those under $250,000 and Republicans will sit out in the cold…..
We wanted to sell it today, we gave them an offer they couldn’t refuse, they refused and the offer got pulled…
It was for a limited time … only.
The story goes that Warren Buffet, rather worried about his investments early 2008, wanted to talk to God… God told him to use his phone and he’d send him the bill… He got and paid the $333 million dollar charge. His investments flourished, too… That would be the end of the story, except he was down in Sussex County recently, following up first hand on a corporate case being processed out of Georgetown… once again, he asked God for the right to call, and agreed to accept the charges… When he got his bill, he was fuming… He was only charged 25 cents… “God”, he said, “you ripped me off on that first call, big time!”… God said, “Warren, don’t you get it? In Sussex County, that’s a local call…”
As someone who grew up where prayers were always said before football games and county meetings, it isn’t a big deal…… That is, as long as everyone agrees it isn’t a big deal. You don’t see prayers before meetings conducted in New York.
Not because New Yorkers are heathens, but because in New York, you have a multiplicity of religions, so praying a prayer from one of them, is a slap in the face for all others…
Why it’s even an issue in Sussex County is because the Positive Growth Alliance, has been building condo’s like ants, and lots of people who did not grow up in Sussex County, now live there. Many have different ideas of religion than those who’ve always been there all their lives…
If everyone believe in the same version of God as does David Anderson, then of course, duh, why are we even arguing about it… Of course we’re going to pray to God to guide us through this meeting.. That’s what He’s for!
Suddenly, thanks to Rich Collins and the Positive Growth Alliance, we have tons of people who do object to having David Anderson’s version of God, one who dislikes Homosexuals, and one who casts pox on Democrats, one who believes married people should have sex only when they have children, one who believes sex between animals is immoral, one who believes taxes are caused by the devil, one who believes that nature was made to bulldoze and pave with a combination of petroleum and gravel. … one who believes that oil companies have the divine right to pollute oceans, one who believes that animals were made for us to kill. … one who believes a national religious holiday should fall on the first day of deer season.. one who believes pick up trucks and baseball caps are proof that homosexuality is a sin,… on who believes killing someone with a gun is not a sin, but taking that gun away for the safety of others is…
(yes, I’m having fun and talking tongue in cheek)…
The point I’m making is that Sussex County is changing; and it is changing mostly thanks to Rich Collins and the Positive Growth Alliance.
Can you make new citizens join the current religion? If so, then by all means, just like the days of old, they will see no qualms in having a tiny prayer before the meeting.
But if they don’t want to join that religion, then, to force one group of religious people to impose their prayers on others, is not American…In fact, it’s kinda creepy…
If in an effort to show fairness, the Sussex County decided they would do prayers from all religions in alphabetical order, when they came to “B” and hit Buddahism, giving an Buddahist prayer before the session, most of those in the audience would be saying WTF! This is our nation, why do we have to listen to such crap…
Which is… exactly what those Buddahists think, who have opened a business in Millsboro, and have come before the county to ask for a variance on something or other that is in their antiqued code….
So… If it is unnatural for a Baptist to suffer a Buddahist prayer, it is equally unnatural for a Buddahist to sit through a Baptist prayer…
It’s not about one religion being right and the other wrong. It’s about who the citizens are that make up Sussex County. If you want to blame anyone over this controversy, the blame solely lies with those who built up Sussex County and brought in all these new people to begin with… Now that they are here, we have to make Sussex County as fair to them as New York, is fair to us, when we take our business up there……
Positive Growth, huh? Depends on your version of positive I guess………….
With a lot of discussion aimed at one particular person who is employed by the state, and works for it as well, that something will get washed under the bridge without anyone mentioning it.
If we disallow state employees to run for office, who does that leave to run? People with Republican sympathies…..
Let me explain. Delaware only pays a legislator $42,000 a year. One can’t live on that… Therefore the only people who can physically serve are those who do not have to work 40 hours for their income…. That can be someone retired,or someone fabulously wealthy, or someone who doesn’t need forty hours of pay to stay alive….
Therefore, every legislator if not independently wealthy, needs a benefactor. If that benefactor is not the state, or other forms of government, it has to be a private concern…. And… a private concern will be much more emphatic that their “owned” legislator, does their bidding…. For proof of this, look no further than Scott Walker, John Kasich, an Rick Scott.
Currently, allowing someone to work as a state employee, and serve as a part time legislator, is the only way a person representing working people, can afford to be a legislator.
It can create some problems of course, such as funneling money to a certain bureau but that pales in comparison to having another friend of Delmarva Power, Bank of America, Waste Management, Dupont, Positive Growth Alliance, Pam Scott Realitors, serving in our state legislator.
Only someone independent of corporate influence can see clearly when it comes time to balance the needs of corporations versus the needs of our state’s people…
One, we’ve already lost that balance. Forcing a legislator to have a corporate benefactor, will only push that balance further in the wrong direction….
So if we force this disconnection between a working state employee and a position as an elected official, we need to also have a way of having voices independent serve on our state boards…
Currently you have land use issues around this state. Residents are in an uproar over changes to their neighborhoods. But, none of them can run… Who can run? A realtor…. So properties get zoned for quick sales, irregardless of the consequences they actually impose upon those who live there!
This is the direction this bill will take us… unless we have something in it to balance corporate takeovers…
I propose that we pull the plug and make our legislators full time….
Jump the salary from $42,000 a year to $100,000 a year…. Wow, that’s a 138% increase in a time of recession!
Yes, but it will better equal our capacity to serve the whole of our states population.
Any government worker, can afford to quit to serve as his constituents representative. Any corporate representative, can afford to quit, to serve as his constituents representative…. Any human being, can afford to serve the needs of his constituents, without having to sell his soul to represent some narrow interest group once in….
How much will this cost?
41 plus 21 times $58,000…. equals $3.5 million dollars. or roughly 1 percent of our state’s budget. Whereas that may sound like a lot, we could easily increase the top 1% tax rate slightly to counteract it, and with the stroke of a pen, finally have a government independent of corporate, or labor, or another state department’s influence.
Such is the cost of excellence….
Other state’s paying for full time legislators, are…. California, Illinois, Michigan, New York, Pennsylvania… Once looking a the the list of salaries paid state by state nationwide, it becomes rather apparent why across this great nation of ours, the whims of government can be quickly changed by one good meal……
Desperate times demand bold actions… Yesterday Delaware Governor Jack Markell, who won the past election with the support of many from both parties, addressed the full houses of both Legislatures giving a “state of this State”, message…
The commentary across the blogs and airwaves, is all over the place.. So for those who missed it, here is the meat…
A. We’re in the middle of a Great Depression.
B. Wake Up, Old Farts! We’re short $780 million!
C.We shall share the burden fairly, and not cater to the sqeamy baby whiners…
D. (1) Cut spending by $331M; (2) Cut funding to special funds by $40M; (3) Utilize $155M in one-time federal stimulus funding; (4) Raise at least $55M by re-authorizing a sports lottery and getting a fairer deal for taxpayers; (5) Increase our revenues by $166M; and (6) raise fees and fines by $12M.
E. If you see one of our State’s Casino operators out shopping or walking down the street, do the whole state a favor and bitch slap some sense into the moron.
F. We have 10 weeks; or 70 days; or 1680 hours; 100,800 minutes…. to correctly set Delaware’s course to solubility over the next three years… Every second squandered, every breath of hot air, pushes us backwards from where we came…
G. Only complete openness and accountability can make government more efficient.
H. “We must shift our reliance on expensive institutional care for our senior population by fostering community and home based care.”
I. This state funds local governments.. We wonder what THEY are doing with that money we give them…. Hmmmm.
J. Education sucks up and wastes much money… We will consolidate our school districts as soon as we render inconsequential those legislators who have their tongues permanently stuck up their union’s ass, ….
H. We will free teachers from the impediments imposed upon them by unions and ill informed legislators, and let them teach… Let teachers teach.
I. Teaching to the DSTP — dead
J. Want more money? Then teach better… We’ll make sure you get it.
K. The only long-term answer to our problem is getting Delaware back to work
L. We propose to train 40-50 year olds how to use computers. We propose to use 5 million to leverage 50 million to start up small businesses. We propose to push green energy from the top to generate jobs and cheaper energy for Delawareans than ever Pepco or Delmarva Power could ever provide. Since the blogging world is now keeping a close eye on Harris McDowell, we can use the good parts of his plan, and even mention his name in public again in a positive way… Will wonders never cease?
M. We seek legislation that requires utilities to achieve, by 2015, a per capita electricity consumption reduction and peak demand reduction of 15%.
N. We propose to establish a statewide priority order for new electricity generation – requiring that we look first to cost-effective efficiency measures to meet new demand, followed then by cost-effective renewables. Only after those resources have been exhausted should we look to conventional fossil fuel sources.
O. Delaware must become the center for Green energy. Not China.
P. So let’s work to encourage turbine manufacturers to make the turbines and assemble the towers here in Delaware, with easy access to the Atlantic Ocean. These wind turbines require thousands of parts and we should work to make sure they are made in Delaware.
Q. Nod to Gilliagan, DeLuca, and Carney… Hey… How are you?
R. Look folks, it’s this simple.. We’re dead in the water, the enemy ship is swinging around to rip us apart with a final broadside from 55 cannons…. Do we grapple, tie ourselves, board, and take the fight to them, or…. do what we always have done and quibble about who gets the credit and who carries the blame…
S. Damn it. I’m going aboard. Who is with me?
In typical kavipsian fashion no punches were pulled.. Our crisis is too big for subtle niceties… “Gee, Tony, what nice suspenders!”…. The effectiveness of the speech, lies in the answer to the last question: who is with him?
For one, I am. And I pity whoever gets in my way….
(right click on image for full view)
The Budget Bill is posted and goes to both Houses on Monday, the last day of this year’s Legislature.
Avid readers can understand after reading why most Delawarean legislators vote aye or nay on standard principal without ever reading the entire voluminous work…….
However at this point in time, the Bond Bill is still off line. That bill is primarily the one with all of the hidden agendas…….
For those unaccustomed to analyzing these type of things, the definitions below may be helpful……..
GF – General Fund
ASF – Appropriated Special Funds
NSF – Non-appropriated Special Funds
TFO – Trust Fund Operations
TFC – Trust Fund Capital
FTE – Full-time Equivalent
Due to it’s complexity and size, specialists in each category now need to look over just their own respective areas of expertise, in order to determine if any citizen action is required…..
You can post any item you feel requires citizen action in the comment section below (the tab is at the end of the category listing just under the heading) and they will be read by those who need to know……..