September 2013
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Month September 2013

The Canadian Cruz Conspiracy

It took a while, but I think I finally understand what is going on with the Cruz-induced government shutdown. Let’s start with the basics. United States Senator Rafael Edward “Ted” Cruz was born December 22, 1970 in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. Less than a year after being elected to the Senate, Cruz is whipping votes in the House and pushing Congress into a U.S. government shutdown. Let’s connect the dots here. A Canadian-born US Senator is actively pushing this shutdown, actively pushing a strategy that will damage the US government and the US economy. And who would be the prime beneficiary of this governmental suicide? Canada, of course. Isn’t it obvious? What else could this be? Isn’t this the first step in a Canadian conspiracy to take over the United States? With the US federal government shut down, it will only take a few dozen members of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police to roll across the border and take control of our country. And then what? Will we all be singing Oh Canada, in French? Will the Canadians mandate all USA Dunkin’ Donuts be converted to Tim Horton’s? Will we be forced to replace our favorite breakfast meat to Canadian bacon? […]

Ex-it Scott Brown?

Selling the Wrentham home.  Carpet bagging to where?  Well, it’s been a slow news cycle for him since the Iowa state fair flop and the annoying focus on the BosMayor race…..gotta keep the ego sated.

Sheltered workshops under fire in Massachusetts

(Cross-posted from the COFAR Blog) Paul Buonomo enjoys his job stuffing envelopes, collating papers and carrying out other tasks in a program in Danvers known as a sheltered workshop. His parents, Doris and Joe Buonomo, maintain that the workshop, run by Heritage Industries, is the best such program Paul has ever been in. But in the wake of a national debate over the political correctness of sheltered workshop programs for people with developmental disabilities, programs such as Paul’s may soon be phased out.  Here in Massachusetts, the Department of Developmental Services is reviewing its policies regarding sheltered workshops and has invited state-funded providers into a working group to determine what the future will be for the programs. Sheltered workshops provide opportunities for developmentally disabled people to do assembly work and other tasks, usually for a small amount of pay, in group settings.  The charge of political incorrectness stems from the fact that the workers are not participating in the nation’s mainstream workforce and are therefore allegedly being “segregated” from non-disabled people.  In many – perhaps in most – cases they also receive sub-minimum wages. The charge that sheltered workshops promote segregation and inadequate pay to disabled people is being leveled not only by a […]

Please Support the Initiatives to Raise the Minimum Wage and Provide Earned Sick Leave

For the past several weeks, I (and many others) have been helping out the Raise Up Massachusetts campaign, a broad coalition of groups working to place two initiative questions on the November 2014 state ballot. The first would raise the state’s minimum wage from the current $8 per hour, where it’s been since 2008, to $9.25 in 2015, $10.50 in 2016, and pegged annually to inflation going forward. The second would require Massachusetts employers to provide their workers with earned sick leave. Workers would accrue one hour of sick leave for every 30 hours worked, up to a maximum of 40 hours per calendar year. For employees of businesses with 11 or more employees, the sick leave would be paid. For employees of businesses with 10 or fewer employees, it would be unpaid but the employee would be protected against termination for using the sick leave. Please support each of these initiatives in any way you can. These policy changes have broad public support and are sorely needed, but Raise Up Massachusetts has a daunting task in placing the questions on next year’s ballot.

Scott Lively running for Governor of Massachusetts as spoiler candidate

Scott Lively, the Springfield-based anti-gay activist on trial for the persecution of LGBT people in Uganda, has announced that he is running for Governor of Massachusetts. Yesterday the blog Conservative Patriot reprinted an email from Mr. Lively in which Mr. Lively states: After long contemplation and prayer I am convinced that I should run for Governor of Massachusetts. I will run as an independent. The Christians and conservatives of this state need a candidate who can clearly and unapologetically articulate Biblical values without fear or compromise. They need a candidate who will tell the simple truth that abortion is murder, and homosexuality is condemned by God (but that Jesus forgives and heals those who repent). That parents and not the state have authority over their children, because government is our servant and not our master. That socialism is slavery and humanism breeds corruption. But mostly they need a leader who will remind the people that Massachusetts was founded upon Jesus Christ and the Bible and that our future security and prosperity depend on restoring our trust in Him. “Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord!” Psalm 33:12. Mr. Lively confirmed via email this morning that he is indeed […]

Patriots Open Thread -They are screwed

My goodness, the only guy that has hands is doing punt returns and almost got knocked out of the game.  Why is Edelman doing punt returns? Wilfork out with a bad wheel, and Brady’s new target is #46, who played defense for Brown Univ.  Now the Pats look like an old Oklahoma team that runs the ball 9 out of 10 plays.  My goodness, get Tebow back here and run the wishbone offense until china doll Amendola and Gronk get healthy.

Home Depot and Trader Joe’s putting part-time workers into Obamacare Exchanges

Kudos to these two companies for actually providing h/c insurance to p/t employees.  I love Trader Joe’s wine selection, I always go for the $2.99 Charles Shaw brand.  This weekend I was at Home Depot buying a few pressure-treated fence posts.  I had to do some fence mending before the cold weather hits. 20,000 p/t Home Depot workers will lose their employee sponsored health insurance, according to Reuters.  Huffington Post reports Trader Joe’s making the same move with its p/t workers, and pushed into the public (not private) exchanges.  While technically this breaks Obama’s promise that people won’t lose their current insurance, I can see the argument that many could benefit from this move.  We are told there are more options in these exchanges, and possibly these workers will be given a subsidy.  Like anything in life, there will be winners and losers.  My gut tells me most of these workers would benefit. It appears that Deval Patrick was told by D.C. “No waiver for you”.  He asked a waiver on a ratings factor in the Obamacare Law, for small businesses under 50 employees.  Even Keating, Capuano, Lynch, and Tierney asked for the waiver.  ”A study by Massachusetts health insurance […]

Resilience and Climate Change

Recently, I’ve noticed there has been a shift from talking about mitigation to adaptation to resilience when dealing with climate change. From my perspective, this is not a bad development as resilience focuses on practical preparedness for immediate hazards. This can partition change into small increments that are readily understandable and remove the polarized politics of climate change from the discussion. If you’re talking about measures to prevent system failure because of a weather emergency, it tends not to matter what your position is on greenhouse gases because everybody remembers the last hurricane, flood, or blizzard. In addition, resilience measures can also be adaptation and, even in some cases, mitigation strategies for climate change as well. At least, this is what I’m observing here in the Boston area and what I’ve heard out of post-Sandy New York and other areas. This week I attended a discussion at the Boston Society of Architects about a new report, Building Resilience in Boston (PDF). Before the meeting, I spent some time scanning the document and found it to be superlative work, a great introduction to the concepts of urban design for resilience and emergency preparedness and, most especially, a fine literature search of […]

Joke Revue: Obama in plot to force Americans to live longer

  Borowitz: FOX NEWS: OBAMA IN PLOT TO FORCE AMERICANS TO LIVE LONGER NEW YORK (The Borowitz Report)—In a blockbuster documentary to be broadcast tonight, the Fox News Channel alleges that Obamacare is “little more than a thinly veiled scheme to force Americans to live longer.” The documentary, called “The Ugly Truth About Obamacare,” claims that President Obama “is cynically using the health-care law to achieve his true objective: raising the life expectancy of Americans without their consent.” “In America, how long you live has always been your own business,” says the documentary’s narrator, Sean Hannity. “Under Obamacare, though, it’s the government’s business—a government that wants you to live as long as humanly possible.” The documentary lays out a nightmare scenario of Americans being saddled with sky-high life expectancies for years to come. … SCALIA FORMS SEARCH COMMITTEE FOR NEW POPE WASHINGTON (The Borowitz Report)—Saying he was “sorry it had to come to this,” Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia said today that he was forming an “independent search committee” to select a new Pope. The visibly upset jurist appeared at a press conference with the sole other member of the newly formed search committee, Justice Clarence Thomas. Justice Scalia said […]

We’re Headed For A Shutdown! Let’s Fund-raise!

So, we’re headed for a shutdown of the Federal government. As this Politico article notes, Republicans in the House this afternoon decided to attach a one year delay of the individual mandate in Obamacare in exchange for a Continuing Resolution that keeps the government funded until mid-December. Let me say that again in different words and with intermittent bold font: Republicans want to delay the largest part of the President’s signature legislation (which, mind you, was already delayed for three years) for a year in exchange for doing the absolute minimal that their jobs require for the next two and half months. This is just silly.  Republicans aren’t bargaining in good faith.  (As the article also notes, the C.R. Senate Democrats passed would have only kept the Government operation until the middle of November of this year.  I mean, IS THAT THE BEST THEY COULD DO?  I hope next time the Democrats plan on passing [and selling] a C.R. with a slightly longer term.)  And with an apathetic public and mainstream media outlets (like Politico) largely giving their extremist non-sense a free pass, there’s no real impetus for them to start doing so anytime soon. With a shutdown imminent, you […]