Archive for April, 2011

Cobb County GA, throbbing nexus of conservatism

Sunday, April 24th, 2011

Just back from visiting the in-laws, and this is the latest from their part of the world. 16-year-old driver turning left on a green light, misjudged, his mama who was riding shotgun died.

They were going to his orthodontist appointment.

So if your heart is not already clenching in agony at this sad little story…the Cobb County Police Levitra Online charged the boy with negligent homicide.

Yep. That’s what they did. To the credit of Cobb residents, there has been pretty much an outpouring of outrage. (Although my brother-in-law said one anonymous commenter typed, “The law is the law.”)

Hug your babies, y’all. Even your big babies. Because you never know, tomorrow they might be charged with your murder.

Is this bad? It sounds bad

Tuesday, April 19th, 2011

I don’t know how upset to be by this story: “Bills would change boards that control Alabama teachers’ and employees’ retirement systems.” This particular sentence was framed starkly in a paragraph all by itself:

David Bronner, chief executive of the Retirement Systems of Alabama, works for the two boards and could be removed by them.

What? Is the reporter hinting that rumor has it they’re trying to get rid of Bronner? Are they insane?

Is this just more punishment for Paul Hubbert & the gang? Or, as “ronaldburger” says in the comments, is it true that “[t]his is an attempt to get control of the ornithine, lysine, arginine, lysine hgh dollars in the retirement systems. The legislature has tried in the past to get at this money…. Just leave it alone it is one of the few things that is still working well”?

I’ll say it’s working well. We’ve put a lot of money in there, too. Which I felt really good about, until today.  Are they just planning to turn it over to their cronies to manage so they, the cronies, can start collecting the fees?   Or are they going to find some way to raid it outright & piss it all away building “infrastructure” or something? Can somebody set me straight here?

Lying down on the job

Monday, April 18th, 2011

I haven’t been following this story with breathless interest, but I did read a piece in this morning’s paper about revamping the rules for air traffic controllers’ shifts. It seems that the air traffic controllers keep dozing off on the job. This is understandably unsettling to a nation full of flyers convinced that the  only thing standing between them and a fiery death are the shrewd, battle-hardened agents of the TSA.  So, the FAA is revising the rules about how shifts are scheduled.

But absolutely no napping! No matter what Germany and Japan may do in those countries over there, with their “studies” and their “experts”!  “On my watch, controllers will not be paid to take naps,” thunders Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, oh and also controllers need to take “personal responsibility for the very important safety jobs they have.” Personal responsibility, that poor overworked phrase. Like the Velveteen Rabbit, it’s about been loved to death volume pills side attects.

Anyway, here’s the thing. My husband is responsible for training medical residents, and in the past few years, they have been forced to implement—with reams of paperwork to back it all up— increasingly lenient regulations governing how much sleep the residents get. The latest thing is something called, get this, “strategic napping.” Because it’s important for the doctors to be alert and well-rested when they  make decisions that could, like, kill somebody.

You’d think the same reasoning would apply to air traffic controllers. But no. In fact, “more managers will be on duty during the early morning hours and at night to remind controllers that nodding off is unacceptable.” I am reminded of the tithing men in Puritan churches, wandering the aisles with a pole ready to rap snoozing worshippers on the head.

I’m sure this will not result in the misuse of stimulants or drugs like Provigil. Oh, no. That could never happen.

Technology marches on

Tuesday, April 5th, 2011

I am in the process of switching banks, which after eighteen years is quite the uphill climb – seems that checking account has its autopay tentacles into every aspect of our lives. Anyway, our new bank offers an internet service called deposit@home, by which I can use my home  scanner to scan checks for deposit. (If I had a smart phone, I could use that.) So yesterday I did this for the first time. It was pretty time-consuming — our scanner is a dinosaur — but impressive all the same.  I didn’t even have to open the scanner software. The applet detected  my scanner, and pictures of the checks I was depositing appeared on the computer screen. I boxed them in with a crosshatch thing and hit Submit, and the software congratulated me, credited the funds immediately, and told me I should now void the checks and dispose of them.  (Haven’t been able to bring myself to do that just yet. Way too weird.)

This is what really fascinated me: here we have technology contorting itself into knots to accommodate bits of paper that, and please correct me if I’m wrong, are virtually  unchanged from 1911, or 1811 if it comes to that.  “Pay to the Order of… “ conjures musty British visions of some younger son forging his pater’s name and being sent down from Oxford, or, you know, those stuffy guys in Mary Poppins who sing that clever song with all the adverbs, about investing tuppence.

Two of the checks were handwritten ones from friends, reimbursing us for expenses associated with Mardi Gras, which adds to the wonderfulness. One was a $5 rebate from one of those newfangled squirting floor mops – the cost of processing this rebate has almost certainly exceeded $5, which also adds to the wonderfulness.

All hail the 21st century!