Category Archives: Random

WTF, Florida?

If you are upset about a 10 year old boy with Autism being arrested, hauled away in handcuffs and forced to spend a night in juvie, well, you should be.

If you don’t know about it, you can read about it here.

The mother has asked people to write or call (be respectful) Okeechobee officials. If you do not live in Okeechobee but live in Florida, you should reach out to the people who represent you in the state House & Senate. I would say to contact Governor Voldemort but well, he’s evil.

If you do not live in Florida but still want to call someone, call your Congressperson and Senators. This school district gets federal funding, too. I think they do.

You can reach all three at 202-225-2131. Now, that is officially the House number but it is easier to get through and you can get both sides of the Hill. You can look here as well: http://whoismyrepresentative.com/ or you can text your zip code to 520-200-2223 and get everyone who represents you.

If you live in Okeechobee:

Okeechobee City

Mayor: dwatford@cityofokeechobee.com

City Council

dwatford@cityofokeechobee.com

moconnor@cityofokeechobee.com

nchandler@cityofokeechobee.com

mclark@cityofokeechobee.com

Okeechobee County

Okeechobee County Commission

http://www.co.okeechobee.fl.us/government/board-of-county-commissioners

Go here to find your commissioner:

http://www.co.okeechobee.fl.us/government/who-is-my-commissioner

District 1: http://www.co.okeechobee.fl.us/government/who-is-my-commissioner

District 2: http://www.co.okeechobee.fl.us/government/who-is-my-commissioner

District 3: bgoodbread@co.okeechobee.fl.us

District 4: bgoodbread@co.okeechobee.fl.us

District 5: bgoodbread@co.okeechobee.fl.us

Florida State Senator for Okeechobee County: https://www.flsenate.gov/Senators/s26

U.S. House of Representative Rooney: https://rooney.house.gov/

This is a link for a number of your reps. FL House & Senate, US House and US Senate:

https://www.myfloridahouse.gov/Sections/Representatives/districtdetails.aspx?housedistrict=55&senatedistrict=26&SenateMemberID=4587&MemberId=4551&SessionId=83&CongressionalDistrictID=17&LAT=27.24334&LONG=-80.827&houseDistrictId=55&senateDistrictId=26&congressDistrictId=17

PS. to this story. I just received this:

“Good Evening, I recently saw Luanne Haygood story on your page and wanted to share that this also happened to another kid last month in Florida. Only it was Orange County and the kid is a 14yr old Autistic teen with no history of behavioral problem who was also assaulted by the school VP and school resource officers. https://sso.cmgdigital.com/static/server.html?origin=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wftv.com%2Fnews%2Flocal%2Fparents-of-orange-county-student-with-aspergers-question-schools-handling-of-sons-outburst%2F499498721

What do you think? Are we insane?

The United States has elected some interesting people. Over the years, we have had pro wrestlers become governors. Actors have been president. For a long time, we even had a leprechaun in the House of Representatives. (Yes, Dennis Kucinich, I am looking at you. Right at you.) Being insane is not going to disqualify anyone from elected office here.

speaking at CPAC in Washington D.C. on Februar...

speaking at CPAC in Washington D.C. on February 10, 2011. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Now, we have elected a reality star. Some people say Donald Trump is also a successful businessman but his business model seems to be shit to me. He goes into a place, gets a bunch of government money, takes out some loans, hires local companies, they do the work, he never pays the, he files for bankruptcy, he moves to a new place to repeat all of that. While I never went to Trump University, I don’t think that is a good model to follow. It’s an insane model to follow.

Now the Tweeter in chief does not seem to understand that he has moved to a new world. He can no longer control every aspect of the story that is told about his life. Now people listen to what he says and expect him to say things that are, if nothing else rooted in reality. The problem is that for Trump, reality has always been whatever he wanted it to be. When the media asks his representatives about his claims, he calls them “rude.”

No, Mr. President, it is not “rude,” that is what they are paid to do. And coming from the most caustic person in politics, you have no business calling anyone rude. Ever.

What I am left wondering, amid the claims by Sean Spicer that when Trump said he was bugged, Trump was using air quotes or from Kellyanne Conway that Americans’ microwave ovens are turning in us, how does the world view us? I would love to know.

Take the poll! Let me know what you think of us!

What do U.S. politics tell you about the people who live there?
  • Add your answer

When will we reach a tipping point?

I don’t know if we are living in a period of more or less violence than the times before or what will happen sad catin the future.  I do know that we are living in a country (if you are in the United States, any way) where approximately 2.6 people are killed each day by the police.  In tennis, we are currently in the “Open Era.”  In life, we should refer to this as the “Mass Shooting Era.”

According to the Washington Post, during the first 204 days of 2015, we have averaged one mass shooting a day.  Let that sink in.  One. Goddam. Mass. Shooting. A. Day.  Seriously, if I were a leader of ISIS, I wouldn’t worry about killing Americans on American soil, I’d stop planning that and remind my followers, “We don’t need to kill Americans, they’re killing themselves.”  If this were a biological model, I would say Americans have exceeded their carrying capacity.

Yet, gun control remains the holy grail of progressive politics.  President Obama has said that not getting anything done for this is the biggest failure of his presidency. Today, I heard part of a heated debate on having guns in movie theatres where the gun rights supporter said things like, “you know you can fire guns in the dark.”  Wow, thanks, Captain Obvious.  His point was, I think, that we should allow everyone to have guns in movie theatres because then a fellow citizen cold have taken the gunman out.  This led to the conversation about what about cops who aren’t in uniform or what if the police burst in just as someone in regular clothes went to “take out” the gunman and didn’t know who the bad guy was. My head went to some movie about the wild west where everyone had guns and the whole place got shot up.

That’s the America I want to live in.  It’s Rick Perry’s America, too.  What is wrong with us?

Some people have said they are concerned about going to the movies now.  What happens when people stop going to other businesses?  When the DC sniper was active, it shut most of the area down.  People cancelled plans to visit the area.  And that was two people in a car, shooting random people at gas stations and outside malls.  The area economy took a huge hit.

When will mass shootings do the same thing?  When will people stop spending money at stores?  When will businesses tell the NRA, “Look, we appreciate your views stem from an opinion of gun rights that was formed when the army used muskets but we’re losing business because modern people are scared of being killed by a crazy person with an assault weapon.  So please stop opposing reasonable measures to prevent mass shootings.”

When will that exchange occur?

 

 

Avoid squirrels

Watchu talking about, Willis?

Watchu talking about, Willis?

I have been curating news for an app/website — www.inside.com/science.  You can find the app on iTunes (please do, and recommend it, it’s great for news junkies).

Basically, I read articles and listen to podcasts about science and write about the pieces.  I end up reading a lot about, well, science stuff and learn something every time.  This is what I learned today…

Avoid squirrels.  They get a certain kind of boravirus that attacks the brain and causes it to swell.  They can now pass it to people.  Three died last week in Germany.  They’re cute but will kill you.

Avoid the University of Colorado at Boulder.  Apparently tranquilized bears are just falling out of the trees there.

Want to go to Mexico, Chile or Indonesia?  Don’t.  Massive volcanoes are erupting there.

Thinking about visiting Long Island?  You probably should avoid that place, too.  Not only are the beaches teeming with Portuguese Man-O’-Wars but dead whales keep washing ashore.

And if you think you can remember a hundred things at a time, you’re wrong.  You can blame your parents for your anxiety, it’s inherited.

If you think something is wrong with you because you can’t feel as much empathy as you’d like when you read about thousands of people dying, don’t be so hard on yourself.  It’s your biology. But if you are mean, be careful, you might be evil.

On the bright side, if you want to drop acid, a study in the medical journal, the Lancet, says that’s pretty safe so have at it.

And that’s some of what I learned today.

Diary of a disenfranchised Democrat

Ok, I published this a few years ago but with the pundits hopping all over themselves to write President Obama’s most recent obituary, I thought we could use a laugh.  Oh, how the 1990s were just an era of wonderful bipartisanship and hope…

 

There’s been a lot of talk about how President Obama is in trouble with his base.  The narrative goes something like this: liberals are disappointed with Barack Obama’s performance.  Maybe he has been too timid, too hands-off, too much of a law professor when what we neehttp://www.alysonchadwick.com/wp-admin/admin-ajax.php?post_id=688&action=grunion_form_builder&TB_iframe=true&width=768&id=add_formded was a scrappy street fighter, willing to go toe-to-toe with an obstructionist Congress and the wiley John Boehner and Eric “Dr. No” Cantor.  Neither Bill or Hillary Clinton would have put up with this malarky.  No, sir.

My friend, Chris Rugaber (you know the AP business writer, if you don’t read his stuff, you should start), sent me this piece: When did liberals become so unreasonable? The idea being, that liberals are never happy with anything.  I dug through my personal papers and the following represent excerpts from my journal.

******************************************************************************************

Fall 1991:

Dear Diary,

My mom and I were talking about what Democrats will run for president next year.  Seems pointless to me.  George Bush is just so dang popular, what with that stupid Iraq war and all.  I like Paul Tsongas a lot but, seriously, another liberal, Greek from Mass?  That’s never gonna happen.  I said Bill Clinton is the only viable candidate.  She thinks his performance at the 1988 Democratic Convention will do him in, they did lower him off the stage and all, but I think he’s got a certain “je ne sais quoi.”  I cannot wait to move to France.  If Bush gets reelected, I am going to move there.

Winter 1992

Dear Diary,

Well, I don’t have to move to France.  Bill Clinton is our new president!  We have the White House, the Senate and House of Representatives!  I hear that means a lot!  There’s nothing stopping us now!  We are going to make health care available to everyone!  It’s a good time to be alive!  Diary, you had better not stop thinking about tomorrow!  I know I won’t!1

Spring 1993

Dear Diary,

This has been a sad time for Democrats.  We have a Dem in the White House and control both sides of Capitol Hill but President Clinton’s stimulus package went down in flames in the Senate, damn you filibuster! ( http://www.nytimes.com/1993/04/22/us/gop-senators-prevail-sinking-clinton-s-economic-stimulus-bill.html) Weren’t they paying attention to the It’s the economy, stupid! message?  Hello! I remain hopeful that we can get healthcare reform through, Hillary Rodham, I mean Hillary Rodham Clinton (I keep forgetting she is using his name now!) is heading up the committee for that so I am sure it will go through.  She tried to soften her image with that cookie recipe and my mom swears by her turkey tips (hint: avoid basting by putting bacon on top — saves time and is delicious!) but she’s tough as nails. President Clinton’s lack of foreign policy experience is pretty clear, I sure wish we’d stop the genocide in Bosnia.  Slobodan Molosovic sounds like a dick.

Fall 1993

Dear Diary,

I just cannot shake the feeling that we are fucking up big time here.   If we cannot capitalize on the promise of Bill Clinton, we are totally screwed.  Does he know the damage he is doing to our party and system?  Bosnia remains a mess.  When are we going to help these people?  I hear there’s going to be a new Holocaust museum in Washington, DC, I sure hope they look into Bosnia.  This crap is unacceptable.  None of my friends will even talk to me about it.  And now the crazy “liberal” media seems obsessed with some innocent investments the Clintons made a thousand years ago, I think they’re calling it white-water?  I don’t know why they are so anti-rafting.  Seems like a good hobby to me.

Spring 1994

Dear Diary,

Am so depressed.  Hillary Clinton’s health reform looks to be headed towards disaster!  They say she didn’t consult Congress enough, as if!  What has happened to our party?  I thought we had some guts but I guess not.  Man, Bill Clinton sucks.

Winter 1994

Well, the end of the world is here.  Officially.  The Republicans just took the House back — after about a million years.  The Speaker was the first to lose his seat since we had a speaker.  Healthcare reform died a painful death.  Damn senators act like they should be consulted on policy issues, how rude!  Don’t they know Bill Clinton is a D?  Stupid “liberal” media is still into that rafting crap.  Have they no lives?

Winter 1995

Dear Diary,

Have been too depressed to write.  Bill Clinton has failed us all.  First no action on Bosnia, then health care reform failure and then he was all about welfare reform.  Says that will be his big thing should he win reelection, good luck, jerk.  Thank god for Newt Gingrich.  He was so mean/whiny that he made us look good.  Shut down the government because he was pissed about his seat on AF1.  I sure wish Democrats would grow a pair.

Winter 1997

Dear Diary,

Wow. It’s been a painful few years.  When did Democrats stop being Democrats?  Sure we had a few victories but that’s all because Newt Gingrich is so stupid. And whiny.  Bill Clinton totally caved to the GOP on the last two budgets and welfare reform.  Thank goodness he won reelection, though he seems more like a Republican.  That rafting thing ended up being more of a big deal than I had thought. And now, it looks like he may have had an affair with an intern.  Question:  If you know the world is watching you, can you keep your pants on for five minutes?  No?  Work on it.

January 1998

Dear Diary,

Just got a job in the record industry (publicist for RCA Victor).  All my friends were surprised that I would pick music over politics but it has been hard to be a Dem.  Fr weeks, every day, reading the paper has been a challenge.  But then I was walking down the street and had a thought — why am I upset with Bill Clinton?  He has been a good president.  We have had a near unprecedented period of peace and prosperity.  That has been a good thing.  I am tired of being unhappy with him for stupid crap that doesn’t matter.

*******************************************************************************************

Ok, those aren’t really from my journals, though I am sure I wrote similar things back then.  I remember worrying that Bill Clinton was going to squander the opportunity to do some truly spectacular things with his presidency.  I could not understand why Congress resisted working with him, did they not understand that he and they were in the same party?

It is easy to criticize President Obama for being too hands off when dealing with Congress, his absence from the conversations about the debt ceiling or the super committee’s failure only reinforces the narrative and it is easy to forget that he accomplished more in his first year in office than Bill Clinton.  He also managed to get health care reform, as imperfect as it is, passed.  I would like him to be more of a fighter, to het his hands dirty a little — politics is a dirty business — but that’s not who he is.  That’s also not the person many people voted for.  I am going to try to remind myself of how I felt during the Clinton administration whenever I am tempted to buy into the narrative that says I am supposed to be disappointed in President Obama.