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Random notes on the news

Republicans can spend, too

I love the irony of seeing Republican lawmakers running around handing out checks, especially after what just went down in Washington.

Touhill came up with $6 million for Hanover. Barletta got $3 million for Pittston.

Goes to show that when it comes to spending other people’s money, they’re just as handy as Democrats.

Some of the $3 million grant for Pittston goes to the construction of a $6.45 million retail and office building at the corner of William and North Main and some other stuff.

Not that I begrudge Pittston the money. They need it and can use it.

Revilatizing an old small city is not easy nor cheap and there is no guarntee it will work, but they have to try.

Easy math

Let’s say the federal deficit is $5 trillion in a fiscal year just to make the math easy. So they cut spending in that year $1 trillion. Now the deficit is $4 trillion.

Then they raise taxes $1 trillion in that year. So is the deficit now $3 trillion? No it’s $4 trillion because the $1 trillion in taxes gets spent so they don’t have to reduce spending by $2 trillion. Extrapolated that out.

Wrong rights

People who say gays have a “right” to marriage are confusing rights with privileges. There is no such thing as a ‘right” to get married for straights or gays.

If it was a right we’d just go out and do it. A man or woman, or two people of the same sex, or more than two people of either sex for that matter could just stand next to each other on the riverbank and say, “Ok we’re married.” But that wouldn’t make them legally married because marriage requires a license from the state.

Rights don’t require licenses. And because the state licenses marriage it can refuse to grant a license to, say, first cousins, more than two people, a women and her St. Bernard, and, as most states do for better or worse, two people of the same sex.

Don’t gripe to me that I’m a nasty old gay-hating conservative. I was a guest at a same sex marriage last year. Because it was in a state which does not grant marriage licences to same sex couples it wasn’t a legal marriage. They called it a committment ceremony.

Too bad for them. I wish it was legal. I’m not against states legalizing gay marriage, I’m just pointing out the fact that marriage is not a right.

More wrong rights

L. A. Tarone has a radio show on WILK on Sunday afternoon. It’s a good show. He’s an interesting guy and WILK would do well to have him on the air more than two hours a week.

But, to nitpick about another misuse of the word “right”, Tarone’s motto for the show is “Dedicated to the belief that you have a right to be heard.”

We don’t have a right to be heard. We have a right to free speech, yes, but there is no requirement that anybody listen. We can turn off the radio.

Sure, anyone can get on a soapbox on a corner and rap their gripes, but I can turn my hearing aid off as I walk by. The soap box rapper does not have a right to be heard, nor does anyone else.

Newspapers have editors who are free to pick and chose which letters-writers get the “privilege” of getting their letters in the papers.

Talk radio shows have screeners who pick and choose which callers get the “privilege” of being on the radio.

Ignored traffic laws

In Wyoming the state police or PennDot, or maybe it was the local police, put out signs on Wyoming Avenue warning drivers to stop for pedestrians in crosswalks. That would be fine because crosswalk laws have been ignored since they were passed. But it’s not fine because the paint on the crosswalks is mostly obliterated.

Not that drivers would obey the law and stop for pedestrians in crosswalks even with new paint on the crosswalks. Most of them wouldn’t stop for a little old lady with arms full of groceries in a pouring rain, or a guy walking an old slow beagle.

I know, I tried it. Almost got killed.

Speaking of ignored traffic laws, I drive I-80 a lot to and from Penn State, and 70 mph is standing still, 75 is like 60, and 80 is the norm.

So what’s the point of a 65 mph speed limit? Make it 80 and enforce it. Like, get that guy going 90 off my bumper.

Sick days for sale

Do you get annoyed when you hear about school districts or the state or county “buying back” retiring employees’ sick days? How did such a ridiculous concept get traction in the first place?

Answer: It was negotiated into contracts by the unions and the compliant state and gutless school districts. It’s just another way for public sector unions to take money out your pockets and put it in theirs.

How about this? Call it vacation, sick, personal, whatever, here’s X amount of annual leave. If you’re sick stay home. Use it or lose it.

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