How not to rebuild – a New Orleans guide

You live in an area where your home is actually below sea level. Your government ignores necessary standard maintainance care for levees for years and performs sub-par repairs when doing any work on them. Your government ignores studies showing the catastrophic damage possible from an exceptionally powerful hurricane. Said hurricane hits, destroys massive amounts of the city, leaves your home flooded and worthless or washed away. You are away for 12 months and more, until finally one day, you find out you are eligible for federal reconstruction funds, so you decide to move back to the city you left and rebuild your home. At this point, what’s the smartest thing to do? Why, rebuild in the same area with the same kind of house and hope for the best.

By ones and twos, homeowners here are reinhabiting neighborhoods, even the most devastated ones, and many view their return as a triumph over adversity.

But experts involved in the rebuilding believe that the helter-skelter return of residents to this low-lying metropolis may represent another potential disaster.

Continue reading “How not to rebuild – a New Orleans guide”

Why Queen mama bee gets around

I’m sure you’re sitting there, pondering questions of cosmic importance, just musing what is, was, can be, and such. And while you are doing that, probably one of the questions which often consumes your thoughts is “Why do queen bees mate with multiple males?” especially since you know one male produces enough sperm for all the baby bees the queen can produce in a single gestational period (yup – big word there – we like to educate while distributing trivial and worthless knowledge).

Seeking extra mates costs a promiscuous queen honeybee energy and time, and it puts her at greater risk of predation and catching venereal diseases. But it doesn’t stop her.

I’m going to offer up my guess here. Mama queen is just a horny slut. Of the extreme nymphomaniac persuasion. That’s not a judgement, mind you – I love horny sluts, and wish I knew more of them. Let’s read on and see if I am correct.

Continue reading “Why Queen mama bee gets around”

President Bush continues to consider himself above the law

Roughly a year after President Bush’s illegal (yet unfortunately still unprosecuted due to Congressional “leaders'” lack of backdone) wiretap program, the President has granted himself the authority to now open mail from and to American citizens without a warrant. Apparently, the whole checks and balances concept doesn’t apply to the current administration.

President Bush has quietly claimed sweeping new powers to open Americans’ mail without a judge’s warrant, the Daily News has learned.

The President asserted his new authority when he signed a postal reform bill into law on Dec. 20. Bush then issued a “signing statement” that declared his right to open people’s mail under emergency conditions.

That claim is contrary to existing law and contradicted the bill he had just signed, say experts who have reviewed it.

. . .

“Despite the President’s statement that he may be able to circumvent a basic privacy protection, the new postal law continues to prohibit the government from snooping into people’s mail without a warrant,” said Rep. Henry Waxman (D-Calif.), the incoming House Government Reform Committee chairman, who co-sponsored the bill.

. . .

Most of the Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act deals with mundane reform measures. But it also explicitly reinforced protections of first-class mail from searches without a court’s approval.

In this, we learn that President Bush believes he can write law merely by adding on to bills he signs, while simultaneously failing to understand the bills he is signing. For those that don’t know, it is true that with a signing statement additional measures can be added to laws when they are signed. However, it is also true that the Constitution does not give these signing statements any actual legal significance. Historically, signing statements have been used to clarify or limit signed bills, but never to extend them.

Folks who think that judges legislating from the bench are bad should be extremely riled up by this, but I predict that won’t happen. Many will fall back to either “It has no actual legal force” or something effectively equivalent to “He’s trying to protect Americans so it is OK.” Neither of these statements work for me, because President Bush will use this new illegally granted power as if it were really the law, and I only hear that second statement used by people already supporting the President. If a Democrat takes the White House in the next election (scary though that thought is, it currently seems very probable), I can’t see many of the people I know who now say that of President Bush being OK with President {$Whatever_Liberal_Wins}. If the President wants to protect Americans, I think that laws and the Constitution should be more important rather than less important than they used to be. Without our laws and Constitution, we’re not the America we were 10 or 20 (or more) years ago. It makes me agree with this recent comic:


Now I open up the floor for all supporters of President Bush to tell me why I’m wrong.

[tags]President Bush ignores Constitution; creates laws on his own, Legislating from the White House[/tags]

Idiot steals, wrecks fire truck

Sometimes, some people just do stuff so stupid, it’s hard to believe they live to be old enough to do these stupid things. And trust me, as a big proponent of publicizing idiocy, it pains me to say that. But I do believe it.

nowpublic_firetruck-wrecked.jpgTexas – A 17-year-old who was cold and tired of walking took and then crashed a $650,000 fire engine in the West End Tuesday morning, said Beaumont Fire Chief Michel Micky Bertrand. The Quint 9, a nickname referring to the five different functions the apparatus performs along with the station number, is the most expensive piece of equipment the fire department owns and serves as both a pump and ladder truck, said City Manager Kyle Hayes.

[tags]Idiot steals then wrecks firetruck, Can we just shoot him now?[/tags]