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I never thought of this. These guys are brilliant.  Connecticut and New York have figured how to keep food stamp (SNAP) benefits at their current level.

First how they were cut.  In the Farm Bill just passed, the Republicans insisted and got a large reduction in the amount being paid for SNAP (food stamps)… This huge reductions can devastate economies in states with large numbers of recipients.  If you take a 20% cut,  close to 20% will be cut from being spent in Grocery stores, thereby hurting the economy.

In a piece of legislation primarily aimed against Blue States, the Republicans targeted a program called “Heat and Eat” in which states states could qualify residents for higher food stamp benefits by giving them a small amount of heating assistance.. That level used to be $1 dollar.  The new law raised that to $20 dollars thinking that no state would pay the premium and that would force cuts to the Federal Program.

The genius is in the benefits and rate of return…

Connecticut will spend about $1.4 million in federal energy aid, increasing benefits for 50,000 low-income Connecticut residents from $1 to $20 so they do not lose $112 in monthly food stamp benefits…… It will preserve about $67 million in food stamp benefits….So the rate of return for Connecticut is 4785% (correct, thousands) meaning that for every dollar spent on heat,  Connecticut gets $4785 dollars back in food benefits to be spread thoughout their state….

New York will spend about $6 million more towards the federal Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program’s funding to maintain food stamp benefits totaling $457 million… New Yorks rate of return is 7611% meaning for every dollar spent, they get $7,611 dollars back.

Now if they would just raise taxes on their one percent’s income to pay for those small increases, .. it comes as free money….

If only Delaware could quickly jump on the wagon and get those dollars into our state and make the Republican supporters in this state, pay for the damage their Republican campaign funds do to both our state and the United States of America….

But alas. we are stuck fighting the battle of Common Core… instead of truly fighting for education by fighting against poverty…..

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Newark National erupted for six runs in the third inning Sunday night, winning the Little League Mid-Atlantic Regional title with an 8-2, nationally televised victory over Pennsylvania in Bristol, Conn.

Little League World Series play begins Thursday in Williamsport, Pa. Newark National will face Iowa, champions of the Midwest Regional, at 8 p.m. Friday. The game will be televised on ESPN.

The Social Media outlets erupt: “Oh no, another school shooting” “I’m so saddened by the sickness in America” “My hearts go out to the families of all involved…”

Another shooting… Seems like one happens after every big blockbuster release these days…

This shooting in Connecticut, is our Norway-bloodbath it appears… The idea that children so small getting torn apart by bullets makes every normal person pause. It is terrible.

But as happens with every tragedy there is soon a period of accounting that takes place, to see if vulnerabilities occur elsewhere in our system, if we are truly secure, if it could happen to us….

Television brings it close. Our media has the capacity to transfer what used to be a printed newspaper byline: “shooter kills 28 in elementary school” into putting us right there into that very school’s parking lot seconds after it happened. We see moms and dad, teachers and support staff, and 3rd Graders themselves… telling us in their words what happened…. As we see the same clips over and over, it is as if it happened to people we personally knew.

In real life when one witnesses a horrific crime, the residue from it stays with them forever. Whether it causes them to overcompensate, or go crazy, that event makes some dent in their destiny…..

It just makes sense that our emotions would choose not to distinguish between one that happened to us, and one was electronically beamed. To our emotions, both are very real.

We say: someone has to do something!.!.!

And often the medicine we prescribe is worse than the disease we are trying to cure…….

In an effort to put this in perspective, here are some facts I’m willing to share.

There are 39,200,000 elementary students in school today, both public and private. Today we lost 18.
Just saying if you stood every student side by side in a single row starting from Delaware’s Old Courthouse in Old New Castle,…. (39,200,000 feet at 5280 feet per mile, gives you a row of elementary students standing side by side, that is 7424 miles long)…. meaning it would stretch 2 and a half times across our nation… almost exactly the distance Forest Gump ran in the movie Forest Gump.

As you drive home today, imagine a line of students looking at you from the side of the highway from the beginning of your commute to its end. Imagine if that line continued to California, and came back on the other side, and then headed out again!… Imagine as in the Hunger Games, some authority, divine or otherwise, picked out just 18 from that line…..stretching beyond as far as our eyes can see….

We truly do live in a very safe society where most of us have no real fear that our lives won’t emerge at the end of the day, very similar to how they began at it’s start……

We have a lot to be thankful for… that those numbers are not a lot higher….

If we truly want to get that number down to zero, we need to begin fostering a culture where anger and depression are treated as normally as is a common cold. We need to open lines of communication where any child who is abused at home, can simply feel extremely comfortable telling any public official such, and that abuse can stop… We must continue our work against continued suppressed emotions by dissolving anger before, as it did today, it breaks out into an even bigger tragedy.

You won’t find this on any domestic news services.

Wiki leaks was booted out from Amazon servers at pressure from the US.

Twitters touting Amazon said:

“It is one thing to be cowardly. Another to lie about it.”

“Wikileaks servers at Amazon ousted. Free speech the land of the free — fine our $ are now spent to employ people in Europe,”

“If Amazon are so uncomfortable with the first amendment, they should get out of the business of selling books.”

Wikileaks was briefly hosted by a California-based internet hosting provider called Everydns, and became briefly accessible through a DNS address. But Everydns dumped it saying it could not afford its other 500,000 customers being affected by the intense cyber attacks targeted at Wikileaks.

WikiLeaks later re-emerged on Friday with a Swiss domain, WikiLeaks.ch.

Anyone and everyone is building mirrors. No one is concerned with the content. Everyone is concerned with the freedom of the internet.

Like Robin Hood, the more Uncle Sam chases its founder Julian Assange, the more legendary he becomes…..

Face it: the damage is done. Whatever was in those documents is already out there. A smart leader would acknowledge the carelessness of his subordinates, and work to turn this negative event, somehow into a positive one.

It sure shows Dick Cheney for what he was. That is something positive ….

This is a good thing. Apparently extensive lobbying has not destroyed the voice of the people.. Unless you receive daily threats by email from the Republican Party leadership, if you live in this country, between 70% and 80% of you are for the public option to be included.

The plan is a compromise along the lines of that Connecticut Compromise which established two houses of legislature: one dedicated to population…, the other giving every state an equal voice.

This option will give a public option, but allow some states to opt out.

That may seem counterproductive to some… For limiting the size of the pool of payees drives up the costs… Expanding the pool drives costs down…

But, if a state such as Senator Selby’s Alabama opts out, they will suddenly see their economy fail as firms leave to other states that do offer the public option.. Who would want to transfer to Alabama? No one… You couldn’t pay an employee enough to move there.

So over time, all states will chose to opt in.. It’s common sense, sort of like choosing to eat a peanut butter sandwich instead of pointing a loaded 357 magnum at your head and pulling the trigger.

So this option, even with the opt-out clause, will eventually give us all 50 states with the ability to serve their citizens the public option if those citizens wish to subscribe…

Common sense says they will. After all, if 55 Republicans vehemently bawling against the public option for regular citizens, use public health care for themselves… (Medicare and Medicaid, both which work well, are forms of the public option), then it must be good for the rest of America.

The private option will still be available… There will be no change in anyone’s insurance which they currently have, except perhaps that their rates might go down.

Yesterday the House voted to help save the economy. Today it went to the Senate where there was a question whether enough Republican votes were available to pass it.. This morning, the Senate Republican leader, Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, spoke out forcefully against the bill, effectively dooming its chances despite the urgings of the White House.

Reading Bloomberg’s synopsis I was impressed by one fact…

The administration saw the dire need to pass the bailout package, stating that “the economy is in such a weakened state right now that adding another possible loss of one million jobs is just something our economy cannot sustain at the moment”. Simultaneously, “that one” who was overwhelmingly elected because he opposed everything the current administration has done, said earlier….”we cannot simply stand by and watch this industry collapse. Doing so would lead to a devastating ripple effect throughout our economy.”

Yesterday the House voted 237-170 to approve the bailout package. That means 58.2% voted in favor. Today most precounts anticipate the Senate will vote 59 to 40 in favor of the bailout. Unfortunately under the act of cloture, the number 60 must be reached for anything to pass inside the Senate. (Old rules used to be 51.)

What we have here, is a minority holding up the will of a majority.

The very reason we went to war with Great Britain.

If the bailout fails to pass, Bloomberg predicts job losses would total 2.5 million to 3.5 million from an automaker failure in 2009, including 1.4 million people in industries not directly tied to manufacturing, according to a Nov. 4 report from the Center for Automotive Research, which does studies for government agencies and companies.

This would be the same as if the entire population of Nevada ( on the low end) or every person in Connecticut ( on the high end) lost their job on the same day.

Our economy simply cannot recover from such a hit. Chapter 11 is being touted by some Republicans as a viable alternative.. The only problem is that under chapter 11, invoices are renegotiated, not paid. Receiving no money for work already performed, means up to 3.5 million people immediately stop receiving income. Unemployment will have no choice but to pick up the pieces. (The cost of carrying 3.5 million people has been estimated as high as 25 billion, far more than the loan being given..)

After all we are to receive a payback on the guaranteed loan. However that massive expense going to out to unemployment, is gone forever.

And here is what Congressional staffers are saying is being touted within the Republican Senate caucuses. Apparently all Republicans realize Obama is on the right track. They understand that as his recovery works, their prospects of election are quite dim in two years. They realize that only if America is in the throws of a Great Depression, and they can throw blame upon Obama for the worsening conditions occurring on his watch, will they have any foothold upon which to stand… They are intent on destroying our economy to enable their potential future gain. Hence the opposition to this measly expenditure, which is being made by them.

As the bridge loan fails, despite the 60% overwhelming majority of those supporting it, it fails solely because insider Republicans want an campaign issue around which they can rally..

Forget that people get hurt because of their action. Forget that a number of people equaling the entire population of Connecticut will soon be out of work… Principals to them are more important.

Those of us who study history are often amazed how little things taking place miles away will ultimately cast a huge impact over all.

Imagine living in Georgia, waking up on April 19, 1775 working the farm, eating and going to bed without even remotely having a clue that over a thousand miles away, a shot fired would be heard around the world.

Honey, did you hear ‘dat noise?
“Yep, somebody must be out catchin’ ’em some food.”

And now some two hundred and thirty-three years later, after fighting first for this country, then against this country, then against opponents of that country, then against a country of opponents, and finally Georgia is where it is today.

And it all originated on a Green in the center of Lexington, Massachusetts . There, blood was spilled in defense of the truly original American notion that: I’m fed up and I’m not going to take it anymore.

Tomorrow an event of much greater magnitude will take place and probably will go unnoticed by even WDEL. Before I go on, can anyone guess what it will be?

I refer to the revised FISA bill that goes up before a Senate vote tomorrow, February 12th, 2008. Those of you who do not follow Constitutional politics may be scratching your head, wondering why this would even be considered on the scale of the Battle of Lexington, April 19, 1775.

First: some background.

FISA was originally passed after Nixon had confused the concept of National Security with that of “Nixon’s security”. Thereby assuming both were synonymous, it was morally perfectly acceptable to bug the Democratic headquarters thereby enabling Nixon to stay in power by knowing in advance where Democratic “punches” would land.

FISA didn’t change much. It just said that someone else needed to look over the Executive Branch’s shoulder, and approve and insure that American values were protected. After 9/11 Cheney used the hysteria to say that no one should be looking over their shoulder. Having someone do so would endanger our safety. Although it made little sense, many went along and allowed it to happen.

To everyones surprise but mine, these new powers were not focused on terrorists. They were used predominantly on government employees, to vet out those within the State, Energy, and Defense Departments who might latter oppose ridiculous policies when they came forth. Fortunately the legislators put an end date, thereby killing this policy on a certain date. December 31, 2005.

In a hasty move, an extension was rushed through before the Congressional August holiday, extending the powers until two Friday’s ago. ( If your computer and internet connection seems to responding better today, you now know why. )

Tomorrow a vote takes place on a replacement FISA bill. Included in this bill is a blanket protection of immunity of all telephonic companies who complied with illegal searches of citizens records: searches that had no bearing on National Security. The telephone companies answer is, as expected: “Cheney made us do it.”

In a usual courtroom case of first degree murder, twelve members of the jury usually do not acquit a murderer of a spouse and innocent children, simply because he was told by someone else to do it. However it is certainly possible, that the trigger person could deal with the D/A and get a much reduced sentence by explaining the truth as it REALLY happened. There is a benefit to society in doing so. Currently there are at least seven lawsuits against these telephony companies who broke several basic privacy laws that have stood for centuries. By granting immunity to these companies there will be no way of getting them to testify, thereby enabling the American public to determine once and for all, that no wrongdoing was evident.

Since the sweat beading on the brow of this administration and the foreheads of all the telephon execs is telling, their innocence appears doubtful.

Therefore this ploy of granting immunity can be seen as an attempt to protect the “evil doers”, those very same who wish to undermine all American values.

The House has voted “No” shutting out any immunity for the telecoms. The only hope left to Cheney is for the Senate to vote Yes and then in secret negotiations with the House, re-add these immunity parts to this bill.

In the Senate, a yes vote looks likely, partly in thanks to Tom Carper. Hence, those few Senators still not compromised by Cheney, nor bought out by the telephony corporations, will attempt a last stand by use of a filibuster on the Senate floor. Chris Dodd leads the charge beginning with the procedural statement, ( Mr. President, I refuse to yield.) He will be joined by Russ Feingold, Ted Kennedy, and now, Patrick Leahy, each who will jump in with a question to the Senator long enough to insure that no puddles stain the Congressional carpet. These precious few will attempt to hold the floor until enough heat is put on the administration and Harry Ried by you, the public, forcing them to fold their hand.

So why is this important?

Great question. Up until this point the United States has been a nation created for the people, of the people, and by the people. If this bill goes forward, we will have switched our interpretation of the Constitution and become a nation for the corporation, of the corporation, and by the corporation. In other words, the needs of the corporation will from this point hence, take precedence over the needs of the citizen.

Some of us think that is just wrong. Corporations can’t vote. But with enough money and creative advertising, they can steer us to vote for who they want. But didn’t our ancestors fight so that we could be free and independent, and not beholden to some corporation?

Of course in a sense we are beholden to corporations most of our lives. Does one own your house? Your car? Does one cover your automobile accidents, your heath cost overruns? Does one supply your power, your fuel, our your paycheck? Stop and think for a moment just how much of your personal income is turned over to our corporations. Most if not all?

Now I don’t mine being beholden to a corporation if I am getting something that I want: a house, a car, a flat screen TV, especially if I couldn’t have any of those things without their help. But to have no recourse, and be forced to vote their way on issues, only because they know secrets of my past known to no one else, sends our country down the path to more corporatedom, than is good for the people. Essentially this bill will change Bedford Falls into Pottersville.

This bill tomorrow will help determine whether we hasten down the dark path of corporate domination, or whether we have tools at our disposal to check them and balance things when they step out of line. Will we be in charge, or will they?

This bill decides.

Right now, those corporations who chose to spy for the Bush administration are desperately trying to escape criminal prosecution. But if this precedent is allowed, any future corporations whether seeking past due amounts, or fishing to break your lease or steal your property, will always refer back to this bill to justify their further encroachment of our rights.

Little know fact: In Delaware three years ago, one jury actually took a stand, declaring by their verdict that even in the most justifiable of circumstances, even when used against the most odious, sickening elements of humanity, privacy issues were sacred and could not be touched.

There is precedent here. A jury of twelve random people has forced upon a court the decision that neither private individuals, nor corporations have any right whatsoever to release another’s private history. Tomorrow it is time our government itself become subject to the same laws as its citizens.

So while you go about your daily duties, somewhere far away, a handful of very motivated and angry Senators, are fighting for your’s and your grand children’s right to privacy. Whether they succeed or fail, their ripple in time will be felt perhaps as long as the next two hundred and thirty three years….

The clock is ticking down……less than forty hours remain. Friends….that is only 2400 minutes! Or even worse, just 144,000 seconds. The countdown continues…..

Remember when the General Assembly was sworn in early in January, At that time the 1st of July seemed a long way off.

But in 2359 minutes, it will be here! January to June, let us see…..six months? we should be tidying up by now with just a few knick knacks left to finalize…..Right?

Let us see what is on the agenda’s of today’s General Assembly.

In the Senate: as of 12:00 (yesterday) only one thing: Tony De’Luca’s bill to have various organizations within the state, look for extra money and report back on 12/21/07 on what they find. I find this a little confusing. Why do we need to tie up the remaining 2398 minutes with a bill that does nothing but say “we need to do this”. On the surface, when you first hear it, it seems sound good. “I, Tony DeLuca, got tough with our bureaucrats and demanded they look for other ways to fund our government.” But isn’t that naturally what happens when you, your business, your government runs out of money? Your first priority becomes to find “where you can get more”……….Since there is no funding within the bill, and there is really nothing new in the bill, this bill, as it says from the outset, it is just a proclamation……..A commission, proposed within this bill, could just as easily be appointed by the governor to find revenue streams and report back.

If someone could get back to me on why this bill is important, I would like to hear. But in reading it, it sounds like ‘much ado about nothing.” One would think with only 2397 minutes left, we could find something far more worthwhile to debate……………..

On the house side more is going on. You have Senate Bill 36 which quietly sells government employees down the river. AFSCME may still be around for years, but as for saving pension plans or bargaining for better insurance, forget it. This bill would forever remove those items from the collective bargaining table:

Position classification, health care and other benefit programs established pursuant to Chapter 52 of Title 29, workers compensation, disability programs and pension programs shall not be deemed to be compensation for purposes of this section;

So if in the future if it becomes necessary for the state to economize by cutting benefits to minimize costs, the unions will be unable to protest it. This appears to be the first quiet, hidden attempt to cut state employee’s benefits. This Rubicon, if crossed, will forever diminish labor’s effective voice. Due to the lack of outcry, I doubt if most of them know……….or will know with only 2396 minutes left.

Next comes HB 177, the fusion bill. This would eliminate candidates who may have lost the primary, from running as a third party candidate in any general election aka Joe Lieberman or Connecticut. As Delaware Watch points out this bill would force organized labor to support just one of the two major parties. And you know they won’t support Republicans. Obviously this is one Democrat’s attempt to keep its rank and file from trickling away, aka the Berlin Wall. Thanks to the watchfulness of Dana this bill became public knowledge. But with only 2395 minutes left it had a good shot at going through.

Next comes HB 208, which says that a person has committed burglary as soon as they enter a building without permission. They do not have to steal anything, just be there. This would effectively cut down on the solid American tradition of checking on elderly neighbors, just to see if they might need medical attention. But most likely this issue will not be raised with just 2394 minutes left.

House Bill 251 prevents convicted criminals from becoming volunteer fireman. Perhaps this is ok, but I think there is no harm in letting Freeberry fight fires if she wants to. But these ramifications will go unnoticed with only 2393 minutes left.

The Senate Joint Resolution 3, organizes a leviathan task force to see what can be done with Wilmington’s schools. The makeup of this monstrous 33 member task force, will be big on names, but seriously short on talent. It will pass on the feeling of “lets do something nice for Wilmington” because no one will have time to look too hard at it with only 2392 minutes left.

House Concurrent Resolution 32 creates another task force, this time of 23 people, to look at new assessment possibilities instead of the current DSTP used in schools today. 3 of those will be on the above task force as well. (I hope they have daytimers). This report is due late May 2008, too late for serious action by the second half of this General Assembly. But it should generate plenty of controversy for the upcoming election. 2391 minutes and counting.

Senate Bill 119 seeks to insert this clause into the Delaware code: “(1) The amount to be raised by taxation shall not exceed 20.97 cents on each $100 value of real property in Sussex County for the tax year 2008, 22.23 cents for 2009, and 23.50 cents for 2010 and all years thereafter.” This is to fund Vocational Schools only. And with only 2390 minutes left, no one will even know……..

Senate Bill 123 further seeks to streamline and professionalize the educational process by controlling who those parents are on the advisory boards, which used to be siphoned from the Delaware Congress of Parents, but now are to be hand picked by the Secretary of Education.

Senate Bill 126 finally does some good. This bill alone should save the state billions over its lifetime if enacted. This bill returns the determination of fines back to the discretion of the judge, by eliminating the predetermined amounts, which unfortunately sent many people into our correctional system, who really did not need to be there. Let’s hope there is enough time, with only 2388 minutes left.

House bill 189 removes one more roadblock that stands in the way of remaking Sussex County into a sea of aluminum sided houses. This obsolete law, which on its surface makes sense to update, will, by its removal, allow many developments to go forward which have been so far held back. This bill still is stuck in committee. It may not see light in the next 2387 minutes left. Oops just passed the House.
HS 1 for HB146 seeks to mandate stateside recycling. Unlike most bills before the House this time, this one has the means to pay for itself. However constant vigilance and discipline need to be exercised to insure the recycling fund is not pilfered by Republicans whose modus operandi has always been: “see it, spend it” despite their political rhetoric to the contrary. Oh! Just got shot down…………..

House bill 241 seeks to make this change which will affect 5 employees of the state………all well known to every legislator.

Section 1. Amend §5201(b), Title 29 of the Delaware Code by adding the following sentence at the end thereof:

“An Individual qualifying for a service pension under §5522(e) of this Title shall not be an ‘eligible pensioner’.”.

Section 2. Amend § 5501(d), Title 29 of the Delaware Code, by inserting therein a new paragraph to read as follows:

“(22) Service as a per diem employee with the House or Senate of this State.”.

Senate bill 133 seeks to mandate the separation of children from sex offenders. This is a good bill. Let’s us hope it gets a hearing with only 2384 minutes left.

HB 220 could with tongue- in- cheek, be called the John Atkins bill. Should he ever return to political notoriety at a whim, he could be hauled in and tested. This bill extends alcohol monitoring indefinitely instead of ending in one year. This could be a good thing for those repeat offenders, but more than likely, knowing how most legislators can put down several very stiff drinks in a very short span of time, it could also be used for intimidation and control once an arrest was made. But in their stupor, there is no time to consider this, with only 2383 minutes left.

House Bill 172 seeks to impose the monitoring of uninsured motorists driving upon the road. It tightens reporting requirements on those who get insurance to buy a car, then let it lapse with no payment. Within ten days the state will know. But, to those who like to hold public officials accountable for their actions, this warning is appropriate: you had better make sure your insurance gets paid on time…….

HB 240 seeks to clarify criminal offenses by switching many minor ones over to civil offenses where they belong. This bill is an interesting read for it includes a list of minor infractions that should be civil in nature. Check out for yourself how many times you were a criminal, and because you did not get caught, you never knew it? This bill is overdue. The cost savings from tying down courts, the AG’s office, and law enforcement, over the life of this bill, should save billions.

HB 212 widens the area sex offenders cannot be seen in to include parks, playgrounds, daycare centers.

SB 160, again by DeLuca, provides one more slap in the face specifically to those American workers who get HURT ON THE JOB. They are being asked to incur at least 15% of the medical costs that occurred from accidents while they were on the job. Currently, they receive medical attention at no cost to themselves for employer mandated accidents. Considering that most current Americans do not have enough money to pay for gas , electric, ARM mortgages, car insurance, or car payments,….. their answer to the question “Do you want to go to the hospital for that?” will turn into an emphatic “no,” a decision that may perhaps kill them a few months later from its complications, but save them from paying their part of the 4000 dollar medical bill, which if paid, would push them into bankruptcy. This is just one more example of how a leadership position, removes a thoughtful person away from reality.

Senate Bill 111 seeks to move one offense the other way, towards a felony. Violation of a Domestic violence protection order, will be upgraded from a Class A misdemeanor, to a Class F felony. Knowing how those to violate these orders, are under passionate emotional influences, and immune from normal rational thought , this bill falls into that feel-good status, (look, we did something) just as mandatory sentencing did, and not into effective control. The only effective difference will be the charge presented to the court, long after the women and children are dead.

House bill 266 attempts to standardize the definitions of abuse thought the state’s governmental system. However, based on their definition of “emotional abuse” that definition could be in a thesaurus under “marriage”.

SB150
will give those medical professionals who help out during emergencies, freedom from any liability for any action occurring as a result of their involvement, the same way state emergency responders are protected.

HB 207 seeks to give the same penalties for selling counterfeit drugs, as for the drugs themselves. No more getting off because the actual drug sold, acetaminophen, was not on the controlled substance list……… but was being sold as something that was……..

SB 35: Section 1. Amend Subsection 1014(a) of Title 26 of the Delaware Code by striking the figure “$0.000178” in the first sentence thereof and replacing it with the figure “$0.000356”. This extra money goes into the Green Energy fund at the residential electrical cost of .18 cents per household. This is to generate home grown energy projects on a person’s own property.

And most importantly, with ramifications greatly affecting all Delawareans, is the Dick Cathcart sponsored HB 245. This bill will change history by changing the method moist snuff is taxed within the state of Delaware.

UPDATE: JUST LAID ON SPEAKERS TABLE

Keeley HJR 7 establishes yet another task force, again devoid of funding, to look into statewide recycling. I guess she doesn’t have the necessary votes to pass HB 146.

Then there is the HB 250, the appropriations bill for 2008: all 256 pages of it. But no worries, mate, there still are 2377 minutes left. (9.28 minutes to read and absorb each page, that is if so choose not sleep.)

Hopefully they are taking amphetamines. Because if they decide to get a good night’s rest over the next couple of working days, they will squander 480 minutes of that time left. One must assume that they will sleep on the floor of the offices, because commuting times will bite into 120 more of those minutes. Unless they eat while working they will use up 120 minutes and estimated bathroom time should fall between 100 and 120 minutes. So if we are willing to forgive these personal indulgences (a whopping 820 minutes), they have only 1577 minutes left……a little over twenty six hours to do all of the above and the bond bill as well, which as of yet, has not arrived out of committee…

There is a lot for our legislators to absorb in the next several minutes. To make it even tougher, our lobbyist’s contingent insists… that our legislators follow the Dr. Pepper rule these last few days……..

Dr. Pepper rule? Don’t know that one? That is a classic. It stands for having two drinks by ten, two drinks by 2, and two drinks by 4. Is it any wonder that our citizens get the short end of the deal at the end of every legislative session?

For true insight on how democracy works, show up at legislative hall on Saturday night.It is free and open to the public…… And bring a camera phone.

Horton hears Blue Wind Blowing

Karen, you at the PSC have heard so much.

What is one more?.

In Horton Hears A Who, a childhood book by Dr. Suess, the elephant’s big ears overhear conversations on a speck of dust, and only one Who, has the squawk that makes the difference in being heard or not, to those about to destroy the dust speck..

In the book, that squawk saves their planet.

If only I could be so presumptuous……………………………

However, they say our childhood memories make up our core. And perhaps that is true.

For when the time comes to stand up and be counted, those memories of sitting next to mother, and being read to, are the ones that now block out all the research, facts, figures, I have done on this issue, and in a gentle human way now seem so clear, and so purposeful.

My children, your children, all children need this Wind Farm to go through. For you, it is about money and who will get it………For us, it is whether our life here, in this state, is worth forbearing. For us, it is the difference in the amount of CO2 that the Wind Farm will save, For us it is the difference in Sulfur, Nitrous chemicals,and Mercury embedded in our children’s lungs. For us, it is the difference between paying 6 cents per future kilowatt, and paying 13 cents per future kilowatt.

Wind, despite its problems, is the choice that this little Who believes we need to make.

Just recently I asked someone for how Lieberman’s election was currently playing out among the rank and file of Connecticut’s voters. The response was unexpected.

Their feeling was that he is primarily concerned about Isreal. The defense of Isreal is his main agenda. The war is a method to those means.

Locally he was perceived as a good guy. He got strong marks for standing up to Clinton. He was percieved as more stable than either other candidate. At least they knew with him, what to expect.