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Throw this in Cheney’s face next time he or anyone associated with the word neocons opens their mouth….

Beside Biden’s this is one of the best predictions ever made of the Mid East……

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One of the greatest tragedies the exposure the NSA has given America abroad, is its loss in the dream… We all have a dream losses in our lives.  For some it is experienced when as the fathers we idolized growing up, somehow over the course of 4 years in college or the workforce, matriculate from being the source of all wisdom and goodness, into becoming just regular people struggling along like everyone else….

The USA experienced the same disillusionment under the Snowden leaks.

Our nation always propelled high ideals, and usually we were willing to back them up…  Iraq could not take over Kuwait, (though we tarnished that  ten years later when we tried to “take over Iraq” but now are out.)

The Soviets always tried to paint us as a capitalist nation, an imperial power using economics as opposed to force, but the power of our good people always thwarted that message and annulled it’s impact… We couldn’t be as bad as the Soviets said, because “look at all the good America was doing, and how richly everyone lived over there… Factory workers over here could afford cabin cruisers for heaven’s sakes.

What Snowden showed was that the We, The People are no longer in control of this government’s policy OR actions…   Instead we had a government saying one thing, and a shadow government doing the opposite… and all that it did,  was not just for its self protection… It was for its corporate protection….

Listening in on German chancellor Merkel’s phone conversations really has no solid reason inside our relationship. We are good friends.  However it does have great importance in the worlds of investing or competing with trillions of dollars of European money… What are her plans?  How can our investment community turn that into cash?  These are extremely useful pieces of information, and investing in the obtaining of such, would be a very wise course of action if takenwith in the limited context strictly inside that frame….

One can trace the chilling of the warmth of the US-Soviet relationship to Snowden’s defection and asylum in Russia, June of last year.  These things are done on a quid pro quo basis, and everyone is well aware that  Snowden is only in Russia, because it is better for the Russians to keep him safe there, than turn him over to the US authorities….

The true picture of the NSA’s release and further actions they took after that release, does indeed cast truer fears that the American nation is not being controlled by it’s people… That a cabal inside the government is operating freely on its own, using the conduits of information as its unlimited fiscal source and to create situations out of manipulating that medium…   The idea that this could exist were rare and ethereal before the initial Snowden releases.  But since, the possibility has become real.  And the cabal would never have to become known.  By creating the context of events, they could control the outcomes… By making dissent invisible, they could corral popular opinion to follow their whims…

All I can say to anyone detracting this as a complete impossibility, that propaganda is incapable of bottling up truth for any length of time,  is to remind them that when Stalin died, everyone (still living) in Russia thought he was a god.  A wonderful, loving, benevolent and caring man.  Don’t believe me?  Look it up…  Controlling information can do amazing things.

But to the shock of Putin and the Chinese, the Snowden releases showed that the President, and Congress, and our bureaucracy were wimps at the hands of corporate dollars.  That a illegal request to infiltrate computers of a Brazil oil company in order to find the high yield offshore oilfields prior to the official bidding, would be fast tracked.  That listening on Merkel before a bond deal for Greece, would be done to satiate the whims of the big investors.

That our entire Federal governmental structure is pawned to big money is something our Supreme Court just made even more believable with its bizarre McCutcheon agreement lifting caps on unlimited campaign spending. further benefiting those responsible for all these international illegal actions, and hindering further progress by Americans set against such behavior…

It is really hard to hate the American people… Not even Muslims can do that effectively.. But it is every easy to hate American corporations that have no qualms with devastating a third world nation, then when money is gone, pulling out with no sense of responsibility for the damage done.

What Snowden did, was to expose that was really the truth behind the American dream… So much that when we say America is for democracy, …  around the world, the global audience says…. yeah, right…

Taken from within this context of inside knowledge, Putin’s moves in Ukraine now make a great deal of sense as a solely defensive action… What if the entire Ukraine disturbance was indeed pushed forward (in Reichstag fashion) to create a crises punishing the Russians in the East?  Put it this way,…. before Snowden, that would have been deemed preposterous….   Now it has to be interpreted within the context of:  “wait a minute, these are the people who listened in on Merkel’s cellphone.”….

The real global problem in the world today, is this unlimited wealth against which no one is safe…  Would anyone of us turn down a billion dollars for one or two seconds of work?  Especially if done in secret and no one , no one could or ever would even know?

Believe it or not, the global  solution is to raise their taxes…  When any excess money earned  is going to be sent to  some government somewhere, the incentive to use all this unused money in illegal actions to make more, disappears…  Instead of gambling big money on a price’s rise and fall,… hiding it as an expense by investing in real physical capital becomes the prime option to maximize wealth, one which will benefits us all…  Raising tax rates marginally to higher heights on very, very, very big money, is a policy change that turns the wealthy from being the bad guys, into the best human beings possible…..

 

 

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Photo courtesy of the EPA.

That would be my advice.  Truth is, we quickly make Russia into a demon.  They do the same to us.  If there is anything we have learned over 100 years since the Great War started in August 1914,  it is that going to war, should be the last resort…

Back in the early ’90’s upon being given the privilege to look over the Soviet’s intelligence when Communism fell,  we were shocked that all their aggressive actions were seen in their eyes as defensive moves against possible aggression being planned by us….It is best represented by a young officers story from the cold war.  I’ve long forgotten the source, if it comes up later I’ll tag it in…

But a young officer was in charge of a section of the German fence, and on his first shift, received a request for orders and told the reconnaissance  brigade to go 5 more miles along the fence past where they usually turned around.  They called back to say they’d stumbled on fresh movement of troops being maneuvered to that gap on front line we never had bothered to inspect..  After finding our troops were now outnumbered  by their new response, this young officer ordered another brigade to move up from the south.   That brigade also discovered another large number of troops moving in from the eastern reserves to that same point… The officer began to sweat. Was he witnessing on his watch, in his territory, the beginning of the long-feared invasion of Western Europe by the Soviets?  He called up two more brigades and ordered them to dig in around that point.  The Soviets brought up tanks, and lined them up for an invasion… The young officer then picked up the phone…  Far away, the head of command looked over all the evidence… Finally he gave this advice… Pull your troops out, by ten miles…. he did, and the Soviets pulled theirs back as well.  Ok, came the next order. Resume normalcy.  And soon, everything again was routine….

For those that don’t understand war,  the point of the story was, that the young officer caused the crises.  The whole Russian buildup, was because of him.  He made a move the Russians didn’t understand, and since they didn’t understand, they prepared for an attack. As we brought up more, so did they. They were simply matching our moves… Fortunately someone wise enough to understand that he Russians really didn’t want to go to war, stepped in and averted a possible WWIII start-up incident…

As if on cue, already dumb John McCain is rattling swords and demanding we nuke Moscow.  Soon Lindsey Graham will follow as Tweedle Dumb always follows Tweedle Dee… Likewise, Putin will also have his exact same crowd (probably riding Harleys), his group of idiots, clamoring for war as well…

The Western press has already begin its war talk, leading with the condemnation of the Russian Government…  But really, isn’t that a bit premature?   No one has died.  Far less than anything that happened in Kiev earlier this week….

Let’s wear Putin’s shoes for moment….

What if the predominantly Mexican population of San Diego wanted to be aligned with Mexico instead of the USA, all because we couldn’t get Republicans to pass immigration laws.. What if they gathered en masse in San Diego to protest, stayed, burned down government and private buildings.  What if we tried to make them stand down, and it roused up even more Mexicans to their defense.  What if the Mayor fled to Yuma, and camped out in a sanatorium. …   …

What would the US do.  OUR entire Pacific Fleet rests in San Diego… We would probably act prudently. and move outward to expand our perimeter.  We would probably commander all airports and ship docks in that area in order to be able to land reinforcements if necessary.  We would probably park a couple of gunboats facing the city as an intimidating force reminding the Mexicans we had forces they couldn’t get to, so their behavior should keep that in mind.  We’d probably block access roads leading into the port, so an invasion army wouldn’t be able to charge in unannounced…

Just to play devils advocate, what might happen if we took no action to defend ourselves?  As most Americans are asking the Russians to do? We saw the Mexicans had little respect in town for law and order.  There are a lot more of them than there are of us… What if 10,000 of them just walked on to the base, armed with shotguns, hunting rifles, and a few semi automatics.  What if they boarded all our ships, our subs, and put our sailors at gunpoint into the brig, and announced they were in charge of the Baja Mexican Navy… Now the 2nd largest navy in the world.   What would the US do?  Would we sail into our own harbor as did the Free French and blow what used to be our own ships up out of the water?

Of course the Mexicans would say we are invading their new country.  Of course every Spanish tonged nation South of our border would be condemning us for invading Mexican California… despite the fact that a lot of gringos, maybe even a majority, live around San Diego and support our American troops being there and keeping the masses of Mexicans from turning on them….

Point is, we would ourselves, do what Russia just did...

So how can we condemn them, when we have contingency plans to do exactly the same thing?

There is further evidence this is not like Sudetenland, . One, no one has died. It was a smooth peaceful quiet takeover, textbook by American Standards.   Two, action is isolated to the port and Crimea.  Three,  all evidence points to these actions solely for the purpose of controlling access to the base.

As Americans we would laugh at Europe, Russia, and China telling us to abandon San Diego.  There are a lot of similarities between that and the Russian base. The number one move now appears to be: for the Kiev Ukraine government to insist that the base will forever stay Russian, and guarantee the safety of all Russians living on Crimea… Second, it should state that the current administration insists  there will be no change for those who like having Russians close by. For that select group, there will be only two options.  Life goes either goes on the same; or it gets better.  The third option that it may get worse, is forever off the table.. .

It would be the equivalent of that American young officer calling off his men, and telling them to retreat backwards 10 miles..  it would be the opposite of what happened 100 years ago, where threats begot threats and soon rigid plans took effect and not one leader had the chutzpah to stop it from going forward.  6 million soldiers died, 15 million civilians died, and a whole generation of young men was wiped out.  Girls had to marry men their father’s age.. and in the end  Western Europe’s borders were right back where they were before the whole event started.

Cool heads must prevail.  Of course the McCains will spout off.  They don’t matter.  What matters is that we treat the Russians with respect just as we would like them to do for us, if the shoe were on the other foot and we were fighting the battle of San Diego…..

The causes of poverty are complex and varied:

Yet the list of solutions is strikingly short. Other than picking a kid’s parents, it amounts to giving all children access to a high-quality education.

Here’s the catch-22. While the only long-term solution to poverty might be a good education, a good education is seldom available to children living in poverty…..

Philadelphia has really screwed up a lot of kids. So has Milwaukee,  And Chicago.. And DC….  all places where education reform has bulldozed down the existing public school structure, allowed for charters, then walked away of all accountability…. It is about to happen here in Wilmington, as well.

It starts with the Chamber of Commerce.  Then the Newspaper and media jump on.  Then a mysterious foundation materializes and begins issuing communiques that miraculously always land on the front page or the editorial pages of the most read journals…  The theme is the same.  Our public system is failing and we have to go private…

And the question never gets asked… who is making money off of this?  For when it does and the trail gets followed, it ends at the Chamber of Commerce… types, I should add.  In this case, the Longwood Foundation stands to get (if all tenants come on line)  at bargain rates, $1.6 million per month in rent….

Remember the entire building was donated to them.  Remember the state is paying for the capital improvements (which is fine if only Delawarean out-of-work laborers are hired to do the renovations) and the foundation of which the head of the Republican Party, Charlie Copeland, is the treasurer, gets to collect $1.6 million each month….  $19.2 million per year.  Free money

Even I would be in favor of such a system if it worked.  But as we can see from studying the effects upon those who left Pencader Charter School, on those who will be leaving Moyer Charter School, on those who are to be leaving REACH Charter School… not only does that concept not work, it actually plays with people’s lives towards the negative….  It’s bad. And the public systems already in place are systemically better….

The Southern Education Foundation reveals that nearly half of all U.S. public school students live in poverty.   Secondly, the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center, reveals that poverty — not race, ethnicity, national origin or where you attend school — is the best predictor of college attendance and completion.

Delaware has 51.9% of its students classified as low income….  To gain some perspective, ride the elevator up to the Morris and James office in the WSFS tower.  Step out of their copper colored elevators and look south, then draw an imaginary line straight south as far as you can see.  Everyone on the left is affluent, and everyone on the right is in poverty… New Castle, Delaware City are affluent.  Middletown, Newark, Glasgow are in poverty… THAT… is the reality we are dealing with…  THAT… is about as bad as the stories I’ve heard about the Great Depression….

But we’re not in a Depression! And some districts like Christina School District, have 61.7% of its students low income!!   That is over 6 out of every 10 students!  Is this really America?  Why does the News Journal fail to report this most significant factor in Delaware’s entire being?

Because they are in bed and loyal to the Chamber of Commerce types.  Who never deal so never care about those of low income levels… Certainly not enough to pay a penny or two extra on the dollar to help a brother or sister out….  Actually they are very generous to causes they patronize… so this is not an ad hominen or anti-wealthy attack..  It is just a push to show all that our priorities are in the wrong spot….

The donations and lip service are indeed well intended, and in their small way, certainly appreciated…  but the problem has grown beyond receiving free cases  plug-ins and Febreez to spritz up the room.   it is time to figure how we are going to get the elephant and all it’s dung, through a door that is now too little for it to pass…..

We need to take out a wall, pull out the elephant, clean out the dung, rebuild the wall, and then, use the Febreez and plug-ins to make it smell nice…

That elephant is poverty.  The only way that 51.9% of Delaware’s children EVEN HAVE A SHOT OF ESCAPING POVERTY!!!!  is through a good public school education……

Yet every year with Charter Schools, we are taking tons of money out and away from public education….

We are closing the door on half of Delaware’s children…  SLAM, Lock, throw away the key…..

We need to start working on that elephant problem now!

The same controversy surrounding Tennessee’s equivalent of SB51, has at least that state’s Democrats fighting for those educating our children .  Not like up here where Dave Sokola and Erica Jenner joined forces and sold the teaching profession out for a couple of pieces of silver.

Think for a second.

If your boss gave you a pop quiz at work, how well do you think you’d do? … Guesses?

The correct answer is: you would do only as well as he wanted you to do.  If he wanted you do do well, he’d quiz you on things you do every day enabling you to pass with high marks.  If he wants you doing poorly, he fills the test up irrelevant questions, that you haven’t thought about in decades (because they are irrelevant); at work you are constantly being bombarded with things that truly do matter..

So we are talking about taking a teacher’s license away because her students did poorly on a standardized test, not by how good or not good the teacher is!

Does the teacher make the test?  Of course not:  the test is made many states away by people who have never stepped foot in a classroom and get paid 6 digit salaries. The tests are untried at the time of taking. They are not last year’s test remade.  No one knows how relevant or non relevant these tests are.

Does the teacher get to know the material on the test so she can teach her students the relevant data?  No, that would be cheating.  The teacher has to guess before hand what will or will not be covered, and then has to teach her best guess.  What if those think tank “specialists” have different philosophies?  Bad scores.

Does the teacher get to interpret the test, to explain the questions in a way the child might better understand?  No, that is considered leading the child.  So if a child can’t understand the question, because they haven’t a Masters or Doctorate degree in education, they fail.

Does the teacher have any control over the test taking environment?  No, if every one stays up late to watch Breaking Bad, and then texts till two in the morning about what happened on the show, and what might happen on next week’s episode.,..  they will do poorly.  To them its some dumb test that doesn’t matter anyway.  They’ll still get promoted…  456 + 789… ah, my head hearts…  let me guess… umm  “{c}”

Imagine lining up all of Delawares School Board and Rodel Foundation officers around the Governor, as he signs SB 51, and taking one photo, then firing all those who blinked, grimace, moved, or otherwise “failed” to properly enhance the photo…..

As their cleaning out their office, you can here Hefferman mutter… “they didn’t even count down. They just took the picture.  If they’d counted down, I could have been ready.”

And speaking of FAILURES.  OH!  MY!  GOODNESS!!!  Rodel’s Vision 2015 has failed to meet its objectives (GOALS) it set for itself back in 2006.  They have had 7 of the 9 years they gave themselves to make it happen. Instead of  firing itself, it announces its name is now Rodel 2020….  But a teacher who’s students blink during 3 hours one day from watching Breaking Bad the night before?  YOU’RE A LOUSY TEACHER!   WHAT A FAILURE YOU ARE!  GET OUT OF OUR SCHOOL!  EVEN BETTER!  GET YOU OUT OF OUR ENTIRE PROFESSION!

That is why this is so stupid. SB51 is so stupid. Everyone who voted for it, without reading it, is so stupid.  Every blog except those who raised awareness against it, is so stupid.  Mr. Sweeney, is so stupid….

I won’t belabor the point anymore.  But firing a teacher for a photo moment, is ridiculous.  Taking away their license for the same should in a proper universe, damn you to an eternity in Hell.

If you yourself personally choose to go to Hell, you will find the following assorted people there to keep you company.

Blevins,  Hocker,  Peterson,
Bonini,  Lavelle,  Pettyjohn,
Bushweller, Lawson,  Poore,
Cloutier,  Lopez,  Simpson,
Ennis,  Marshall, Sokola,
Hall-Long, McBride, Townsend,
Henry, McDowell, Venables,

Atkins,  J. Johnson,  Ramone,
Barbieri,  Q. Johnson,  Scott,
Bennett,  Kenton,  B. Short,
Blakey,  M. Smith, D. Short,
Bolden,  Longhurst,  Smyk,
Brady,  Miro,  Spiegelman,
Briggs-King,  Mitchell,  Viola,
Carson,  Mulrooney,  Walker,
Dukes,  D.E. Williams, Keeley,
Gray,  Outten,  K. Williams,
Heffernan,  Paradee,  Wilson,
Hudson,  Peterman,  Schwartzkopf,
Jaques  Sweeney, Markell, Murphy, Jenner.

Just looking over that list, … I would bet that if this list ever got public, and people could see the likes of the company they’d be spending their eternity with, .. our churches would be overflowing this weekend!…

By the way, can anyone out there possibly tell me when was the last time a doctor lost his license for one case of malpractice judgment decided in court against him? Or one Secretary of Education fired for in his first year statewide test results, in what even the friendly News Journal headline lambasted as: “Disappointing Results”?

GO TO CHURCH!

A bill was placed on the docket to change Delaware Law.  It was supposed to slip through the last minute when no one was watching.    That is Blevins SB 151 regarding the Treasury…   Since it was a surprise, a lot of hoopla as been thrown  in the fire by pundits reacting to the impact of first impressions.   In their defense that was all they had to go on…

Due to time constraints this investigation will take a series of small steps, probably spread across Delaware’s official blog circuit, with help from Starkey of the News Journal

But to back up the word coup in my title,  I first want to show you how the original language was written then show you how it looked with the changes after SB 151.  Of course this was stated as necessary to keep the state treasure in line, a ploy that El Som and Cassandra seem to have swallowed hook, line and sinker.

First the original bill:

For those who follow along (you all are great) here is the passage number  Title 29; 2716(a)(2)

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(1) Require as a condition to any deposit of such funds in any state or national bank or savings and loan institution that such deposits be continuously and fully secured by direct general obligations of or obligations the payment of the principal and interest on which are unconditionally guaranteed by the United States of America or other suitable obligations as determined by the Board;

(2) Require that the selection of financial institutions to provide banking and investment services pursuant to this section be conducted on an open and competitive basis; and

(3) Require that temporary clearing accounts as well as major disbursement accounts be established in a bank or banks whose principal office is located within the State.

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That was the original piece of legislation.  Patty’s bill seeks to amend the section 2 of that piece, the embolden area.  From SB 151…

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(2) Require that the selection of financial institutions to provide banking and investment services pursuant to this section be conducted on an open and competitive basis as defined by the Board.; It shall be the responsibility of the Board to approve the selection of each of the said financial institutions by a majority vote of the members of the Board. The Board, by a majority vote of its members, shall be responsible for setting the policy as to the allocation between short and long term investments and the allocation of funds to the respective financial institutions selected through the open and competitive process; and

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Notice a “lot” of new language. In the synopsis this was sold as a clarification of the responsibilities of the board and the trimming of the responsibilities of the Treasurer. Instead, in what is now typical Markell modus of operandi, this if more of a surreptitious law-change than a clarification.

Previously the directive was this should be done in on an open and competitive basis. The previous directive specifically states this further down: 2716 (e)(1)

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The investment of money belonging to the State shall be made by the State Treasurer in accordance with policies established by the Board and subject to the terms, conditions and other matters, including the designation of permissible investments relating to the investment of the money belonging to the State,

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It is obvious to all that the existing law separates the Treasurer specifically out from all other board members when it comes to the investment of the state’s finances.

And that was really all existing code says in regards to the investment portfolio of the state’s money.

But, the new law, the one proposed by Blevins titled SB 151, makes HUGE changes. Now the board must make that decision. The board which according to Title 29; 2716(c)(4):

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The Board shall meet as often as shall be necessary to properly discharge its duties; provided, however, that the Board shall meet at least 2 times annually; and provided further, that the State Treasurer or the Chairperson of the Board shall be authorized to call special meetings of the Board.

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and 2716 (c)(2)

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a quorum of 5 members shall be necessary to hold a meeting of the Board.

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and 2716 (d)(5)

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The use of teleconferencing or videoconferencing is authorized for use in conducting meetings of the Cash Management Policy Board.

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Even now under existing policy only 3 people out of nine, if they time their conference-call correctly, can decide the future investment strategy of this state. Patty Blevin’s law would now give those three people (whomever they might be) unprecedented power and remove the current oversight of the only elected official responsible to the public.

“Coup” is the proper term for it.


Courtesy of Wikipedia

There are no universal rules about how long the life of a concession should be. Economic theory on regulation indicates that the longer the life-span, the more incentives the private concessionaire has to make adequate investments to enhance the assets, since profitability will be dependent on the state of the facilities.

However, the longer the period between two concessions, the less information the regulator may have on cost and demand conditions. Therefore, there is a trade-off between incentives and information for regulating a concessionaire optimally…..

50 years is a long time.   Most people over 50, won’t see the end of the lease.  Only 6% of those now between 40 and 50 years old, will be around go see it revert back to the state.   An egg, fertilized tonight, will be moving around as a 50 year old when this port lease expires…..

Can a lot change in 50 years?   Let’s look back… 50 years ago was 1963… Let that sink in….  If our ancestors had leased the port in 1963, while John F. Kennedy was president, while Lyndon Baines Johnson was Vice President, while Robert Kennedy was Attorney General, it would still be in the lessor’s control….  What would it be?   Would it have grown as it did as as public entity?   Kinder Morgan is an energy company…  How many of these are still around?   Amoco, Getty, Esso, Sinclair, Atlantic, Texaco, Gulf, Pure, Phillips 66, ….

A quick reminder of our local refinery may drive home the point.   Originally Delaware City refinery was started in 1956 and as of 1963 was owned by Getty… In these 50 years past, it has gone through a progression of Texaco, Star Enterprises, Motiva, Premcor, Valero, and after a brief shut down, it is now run by PBF Enterprises…  I wonder how many of the original promises that Getty made to get approval and the refinery built, are still edified in the practices of the current owner?

Kinder Morgan says it has no plans for Liquid Natural Gas…  but, what about its third owner, its fourth, its fifth?   The only thing constant is change….  When people tell me Kinder Morgan is going to be around a long time,  I tell them that early last year, El Paso Gas was saying exactly the same thing….

Bottom line, none of us would lease our house out for 50 years locked at today’s low rent prices, yet that is what we are doing with Kinder Morgan.  We are giving them a cut throat bottom rate for 50 years with no  renegotiations….. And speaking strictly for myself, if I were Kinder Morgan, … those last 15 years I would put as few pennies as I could into my investment, knowing full well, I’d soon just be turning it over to the state in 2064…

Which means, that after the end of 50 years the State receives an beat down, unmarketable entity, and not the same shining port we are giving up today:  the number two largest fruit port of the entire world…..

So, what do other ports lease for?

http://info.worldbank.org/etools/docs/library/64583/2181seaport.pdf

As one can see, only one port is leased out for 50 years:  La Harve in  France. The average lease on the chart above, is 23.3 years. Furthermore, in such agreements it is very common to have penalties and fines to guarantee adequate compliance with the terms of a concession agreement… Concession contracts have long lives, and therefore it is important that port authorities are able to establish strong positions from the start of the concession, and be allowed to perform regular inspections to verify assets are being kept in top condition. The potential threat of fines must be written into the contract to ensure compliance.

It is because concession contracts have long lives that it is important the port authorities are able to establish strong positions from the start of the concession. Re-negotiation of a concession contract is probably the rule and not the exception, and should not be perceived as a failure. Since concession contracts are typically long-life documents, it is impossible that at the moment of drafting the contract the parties can foresee all possible future contingencies….

Bottom line, the excessive length of this contract for this small port is odd, and is definitely laid out in the favor of the renter, who in this case will be Kinder Morgan.  At this point, without balance embedded deep within the contract, we are really doing nothing more than selling our first born daughter to the very first man who comes along….

Notice the Quiet Time During the Assault Ban 94-04
Courtesy of Mother Jones

There are many holes in the argument of banning assault weapons. Briefly there are three. One, assault weapons are not the cause of most murders. Two, assault weapons are hard to define exactly. Three, once something is banned, it can be modified, sold legally, then once the sale is approved, unmodified to make it banned again…

So it is difficult and when one argues with a gun enthusiast one gets bogged down. However, I heard Biden mention if first and spent a long time to look up the data…..

For some reason, even though the assault ban was full of holes, when it came to mass murders in public places, the ban seems to work. One must note that Columbine occurred during this time frame. That proves nothing is fail safe. But it also shows that despite a tragedy occurring during this time, for some unknown reason, an assault weapon ban achieved the desired results…

This is just being discovered right now, so data is reduced to speculation.

I speculate the following.

Because an assault rifle could not be replaced, collectors were less likely to give it to creepers up to no good.

Because assault rifles were de-glorified, simply going ballistic wasn’t cool anymore…

Because these weapons were banned, they kept a very low profile, in order to avoid confiscation.

Here is a chart of all the data Mother Jones compiled over the past three decades involving mass murders.

If you look, you can see assault weapons were very few of the weapons of choice in these mass killings. Most were done with semi-automatic handguns.

So why are we not banning handguns? One step at a time. We know that banning assault weapons in the past lowered the rate of mass murders… In fact it appears that over this time frame exempting Columbine most of the incidents were work related. Revenge for “I got fired so now I’m firing this at you.”

What is missing during the assault ban are those crazies mad at the world and going out and wasting everyone away. Oddly, they show up again, just as soon as the assault ban is dropped in 94. Yet they use semi-automatic handguns as their primary tools, not assault weapons…..

It is almost as if, when we say that “carrying any gun any where is good American behavior”, the crazies get guns and pay society back for their hurt…

But when we say,…. “guns are bad, some have to be banned and regulated”, that the crazies agree somewhat, and stay away from getting these “bad” guns and shooting up innocent people to pay us back for their hurt….

As I said… “it is as if…” I think it would be impossible to determine it now after the fact. However, for whatever reason, there was a period of quiet time between mass murders, that except for Columbine was aligned perfectly alongside of the assault ban passed and signed and named after Ronald Reagan’s press secretary, Jim Brady.

Weird huh?

So why are there so many gun killings this year, and there is one giant manhunt going on in Southern California right now?

It appears to the the fault of ALEC… Did you know gun laws on a state by state basis have been rolled back and eliminated since 2009? Mother Jones provides a chart that handily shows the damage that was done. if we had ways of tracing before? They are gone now. Thanks to the Tea Party and ALEC> When you go to that page, and it is a must see, on the map make sure you click on the tabs across the top first. Then go across one tab at a time to see and fully understand why so many crazies are shooting up so many innocents 2012 and beyond…

All evidence points to reigning in these anarchists. As long as people want people to have guns that are untraceable, there can be no order…

  • Ban Assault weapons and high capacity clips.
  • Register every gun so any gun can be traced back to a human being.
  • Any gun owner whose gun is used in a crime, is a co-conspirator.
  • License every gun owner and require they prove they are competent enough for the responsibility.
  • Create one law for one people. Gun laws become a Federal standard and are not bendable by any state legislature.

This way, any gun owner can have their gun. There is no change in anyone’s gun behavior, unless of course they are a criminal.

And we really don’t want criminals to have guns now, do we?   Unless, of course, we are a spokesperson for the NRA that is.

The inaugural commission created a menu balanced across the palate of the United States of America… Featuring Maine Lobster, hickory grilled bison from South Dakota, Hudson valley apple pie, wines from Lake Eire region. The decision was made by a committee…

Mrs. Debbie Boehnor
Mrs. Diani Cantor
Mrs. Honey Alexander
Mrs. Iris Schumner
Mr. Paul Pelosi
Mrs. Landra Reid

They tasted thousands of different items representing areas across this , and came to a consensus… How hard is that? You try it. It is very hard!

If Americans who have no connection other than their spouses chose to run for office and won, can come together to figure out a complicated endeavor, why can’t we figure how to keep guns out of school, how to raise our debt ceiling, how to cut spending fairly and how to balance our budget?

The reason is the bullies on the outside. Those groups who yell, “don’t you give one inch”. Those groups who say “they’re trying to take rights away from you”. Those groups who growl: “take everything; give them not one penny in return”.

Usually those bullies are powerful because they are bullies. They live and survive on your donations… IF they can freak you out, that you give up some of your hard earned money, they get rich…

There is an industry that thrives on conflict. That gets rich off discontent. That fans flames to grow their pockets.

That industry is who to blame for our nation’s intransigence. Fox News gets the lions share, because they were first. But Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, Bill O’Reilly, Ann Coultier, Glenn Beck, are all to blame. Because we see them in surroundings that mirror our memories of Ed Marrow, Walter Cronkite, Tom Brokaw, Peter Jennings, we drop the pretense that what we are hearing is not news. It is a business whose income depends upon the temperature of our hate. Pure and simple. The more we hate, the richer they get..

Would a consensus on a menu reflecting all of America have been so easily obtainable if Limbaugh, Hannity, O’Reilly were shrieking about each item? Exhorting any viewers to call and complain?

You know the answer… Proof is without the bullies on the outside, you put a handful of Americans on any committee, and things get done….

We’ve got to silence the bullies on the outside… Let’s do it, and eat in peace…

New Castle County Executive. Today we decide.

I first heard of Bill Shahan from Nancy. Woo-hoo, I thought. Someone beside Clark. Bill filed early. He really wants to do this.

But alas in the meetings I attended, Bill Shahan appeared amateurish compared to Clark. Paul Clark, without Pam, presented a good case. He trimmed the budget, he kept the A+++ rating during the Republican Depression from 2008 on. He increased the amount of police being trained. He raised the target level, even though it would make him look bad politically, because he then had more openings on his police force.

Paul effectively explained and I doubt that Nancy could hear it, that sites like Barley Mill, could be developed if they met all parts of the code. The County cannot say to you who own the property, “you can’t build here”. It has no authority under code to do so. What it can do, and does, is say “Ok, if you are building you have to meet these requirements: traffic, environmental, run-off, density, historical, sewar.” As long as the property owner meets those requirements (or gets a variance) he is free to build……

In the beginning meetings back in March, Shahan sounded like a good guy, but, was outclassed by Clark. Clark had all the answers; Shahan had opinions yet untested….. Remember…. this was Pre-Gordon….

Then Tom Gordon enters the race. My first thought was, really? But then he makes a film for the Muslim audience of New Castle County, and that was impressive. No one in recent memory had ever reached out to them. Perhaps this was someone contrite, humbled, possessing a firm quietness…..

The first public meeting with Clark, Shahan, and Gordon, brought back all the memories. Gordon was a thug… Not in a bad way, and if you needed a forceful enterprising person, that personality might be advantageous, say, in tackling the murder rate of Wilmington, “Die, Sucker, Die”… But the congenial atmosphere of going to debates changed. Instead of hearing a college lecture, one needed to prepare his stomach as one does before a episode of “Breaking Bad.” They were combative.

It was like watching a dog fight… with everyone standing around… Your natural urge was to wonder, shouldn’t somebody do something to stop it?

Under the onslaught of Gordon’s thuggishness, Clark responded in kind. Debates were very visceral. It became about who was the toughest, about who could throw punches and who could dodge them, not what could be done for New Castle Citizens.

Having written off Shahan very early on, I believe all attention was focused on these two to see who would be the better for us. This is not completely accurate, but.. one could say the Unions back Gordon, and the Building Industry backs Clark.

It was Allan Loudell of WDEL News who first brought it to my attention. “Both challengers to Gordon & Clark – Jon Husband (a manager in the county’s Special Services department) and Bill Shahan (an employee in the county’s Land Use Department) – tried to stay above the fray. Shahan tried to direct the discussion to the future. He showed great polish and poise for someone who hasn’t held elective office before. Both lesser-known challengers suggested they’d be in a unique position to cut waste and inefficiencies in county government, because they’ve long labored within the innards of county government.”

“Bill Shahan tried to stay above the fray. Shahan tried to direct the discussion to the future. he showed great polish and poise for someone who hasn’t held elective office before……

That moment made me think there was something in Bill I had missed. He’d grown in 6 months.

Then I happened to catch his editorial in the News Journal. It was good, priorities were right. But in that opinion piece was a surprise I really liked. The question was what would you do to bring jobs to New Castle County. The others candidates said tax cuts, improve education… everything that sounds good but is impossible  to implement… Bill said, “our port is under utilized. If we bring in more cargo, we have people working full time, not part time. We have money spent in the economy. ” I said wow. Here is an idea from someone who really does have a breadth of knowledge. We already have it here, It sits right off the artery of eastern America, it is cheaper than further upriver, it has a great potential to steal business away from both Philly and Baltimore… Sure as the others stated, you could pay someone to try to coax a small business hiring one or two people to abandon every other county in the nation and choose ours, but really, what would be your rate of success? But to build up the port, where you already have trained labor under utilized, where you actually get tax money instead of giving it away, what a great idea. I wouldn’t have thought of that…

i began to see Bill as different. Bill was around before the UDC. Bill built the UDC. Bill has been around to see its successes and its failures. Bill really knows the UDC in and out. Now I don’t know about you, but often in ones workplace you have two jerks who are always vying with each other for the next big promotion. They form two camps of supporters, and neither one talks to the other… When each side talks to you, most of what they say, is telling you how bad the others are…

When both are on the same shift, the tension is thick. When only one is there, there is no love or happiness, but you can tolerate it. But when both are gone, everyone feels happy, like a load’s been lifted off, and everyone likes working those days because everyone does their job, doesn’t have to waste time looking over their shoulders, and enjoys the work thoroughly.

I was listening to Al Mascitti yesterday morning, and the was explaining the history of Tom Gordon, and Gordon supporters were calling up and bashing Clark. “You can’t talk about Gordon because Clark is corrupt!  He did this; he did that. He’s a terrible person… ” and I thought really? ….You are trying to make me like you, by demeaning someone else? And it was just disgusting… like the dogfight I alluded to above. Sure it was good radio, but somewhere in that discussion, I had to ask why… Why are we dealing with this?  If either one, Clark or Gordon gets elected, the other side won’t let up, and this will continue ad infinitum. ….

What would break the cycle?

“if you stay out of the headlines for bad things, and start making headlines for good things”…. Bill Shahan.e/o WHYY

That finally decided it for me. “Damn, we deserve better than what we have.”

What was originally a diamond in the rough, has now been polished.. and is now ready to lead the first county in the Diamond State.

When a good person is put in charge, everyone steps up to carry him forward. If (and I stress if because I’m beginning to think the guy on the inside all these years maybe does have all the answers),  there is any experience factor missing in Bill Shahan’s portfolio, someone already and expert in it, can support him.

The difference is, we can now all be” proud” of who our County Chief executive is, instead of carefully watching our elected officials  and tolerating their disgustingly negative spontaneous outbursts.