Wind Projects Count on Towns Ignorance

The proposed wind project in the towns of Windsor and Sanford is a bad idea and the town boards ought to be drafting zoning regulations that are in the best interest of all of us not just some of us.

This project was originally slated for offshore, near New York City, closer to where the power is actually needed.  Taxpayers on Long Island pushed back so wind developers began seeking softer, easier targets in small, rural community’s upstate, taking advantage of a suffering, depressed local economy and counting on small community leaders that may lack the sophistication and legal understanding to mount any significant challenges.

The truth is that the net economic toll in projects like this are consistent losers for the local economy, local taxpayer and property owners.  Developers and suppliers make the most money up front, courtesy of government subsidies and incentives, paid with our tax dollars!   After calculating the losses in property values, the negative agricultural impact, suffering tourism, the health implications and the awful aesthetics, these projects pose a health, safety and general welfare problem for everyone and truth-be-told, the net losses are in the millions of dollars beyond the short-term gains.

Our Town Boards have a statutory obligation to protect all of the citizens.  Those in leadership positions did just that in Cooperstown, NY, which successfully defeated a wind project in their area.  Ask any community that has gone ahead with a wind project if they would do it again and overwhelmingly the answer is no.

The short-term allure of modest lease payments and the unfulfilled promise of abundant power is not a sufficient rationale for allowing this project anywhere near Broome County.  Accordingly, we are calling on not only the Towns of Windsor and Sanford to step-up and face their statutory obligations; we are calling on every town and village in Broome County to pass a well-written protective wind ordinance, in anticipation of these projects continuing to propagate.

Imagine dozens of these 500 to 700 feet behemoths, visible from everywhere, stretching up into the sky three times higher that the state office building in downtown Binghamton.

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Thank God, we enjoy the concept of home-rule here in New York State, allowing us local control over our own areas.  We need to harness this advantage and refuse to allow downstate interests to control our destiny and literally change our landscape.  We already supply them with our water, take their trash and afford them our natural beauty and peaceful, wonderful countryside as their weekend and vacation escape.

The beauty, serenity, our way of life, lets not let them take that from us too.  We should not and we will not surrender to anyone this place we all call home.

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Hope

My first meeting with “Tony” was in the parking lot of a Super-8 motel.  I thought it odd he listing a post office box as his address, and he was adamant about meeting somewhere other than his home.  It took me about 2 minutes to realize that the SUV Tony was driving was his home.  I saw the Marine decal on his side window and he wore a black hat that spelled out “Vietnam Veteran” in bold, capital yellow letters.  As he leaned out of the truck, his walking stick assisted him and I could see the hospital ID bracelet still on his thin left wrist.  Tony was frail and almost toppled over twice in the 10 minutes we spent together.

 

I was sent there by the insurance company to assess collision damages to his SUV.  Because we are about the same age, I felt at ease talking to Tony, a connection that came comfortably.  I asked him about his situation.  He explained that the bank had foreclosed on his house and that he was homeless.  He admitted to having a brother on Long Island, but seemed dismissive of contacting him.  We didn’t get into his medical details but clearly, Tony was in rough shape, but a battle-toughened Marine, far from giving up.  I asked Tony if he had a relationship with God.  He told me that he had lost his faith over the years.  I told Tony that even if he had given up on God, God had not given up on him.  I encouraged him to find a good, local church.  I shed a few tears as I left, at the same time grateful for my life but frustrated that I couldn’t do something more for Tony.

 

I knew he and I weren’t finished even before I said good-bye to him after our first encounter.  Sure enough, a month later, I was assigned to meet with him once again.

 

When I called to make the appointment, Tony said, “I’ve been thinking about something you said to me and I want to talk to you more about it.”  Encouraged, I called the local social services clearing house for some information about homeless vets and whatever other services might be available.  Before meeting Tony in that same parking lot as last time, I met with the staff people at the clearinghouse and they loaded me up with brochures, information and applications for a variety of assistance.

 

After exchanging greetings and some small talk, I asked Tony what he wanted to talk about.  I was curious as to what I might have said to him the last time that had stuck with him.  Tony told me that he had lost his faith when his 37-year-old wife died of cancer.  I told him that the lack of an explanation about such things shakes everyone’s faith.  I told Tony that I had no idea what God was doing nor could I offer any explanation, except to say to him again that even if he had given up on God, I was sure that God had not given up on him.  I told Tony that he and I were put together like this for a reason.

 

I handed over the paperwork and put it into Tony’s SUV.  I told him that I thought that there was lots of help around him; he just needed to reach out and accept it.  As I shook Tony’s hand, I pressed a 20-dollar bill into it and I told him that God was watching over us all and to work on rebuilding his faith by finding a good church.

 

I left the parking lot once again with tears in my eyes, but this time, with a glint of hope.

 

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Citizens, not Subjects

It seems that the less one knows about firearms, the stronger their positions concerning them.

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“AK-47”, “AR-15”, “cop-killer bullets”, “undetectable plastic guns”, “assault weapons”, “weapons of war”, “automatic weapons”, “machine guns”, “gun-violence”, terms all tossed about carelessly by those most likely to have zero understanding of that which they speak.  This happens when the intellectually lazy find the talking points that match their own misconceptions and blindly absorb the narrative as their own.  Never mind that they can’t even define the terms they use or know one end of the gun from the other, they take solace knowing that their friends all feel the same way, facts be damned.

Presidential candidate and former Vice President Joe Biden summed it up best when he said the following in a speech at the Iowa State fair.  “We choose truth over facts.”  Apparently, this refutes the adage that one is entitled to their own opinions but not their own facts by simply relegating those pesky facts to the intellectual scrap heap.

 

A gun, like Joe Biden is a tool.  Fortunately, the gun can’t fire itself but Biden sure can.

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The black “scary-looking” guns available to the public are no different from the guns of 1885; the year semi-automatic firearms were invented.  The term “assault weapon” was fabricated by a gun-hating media to mislead the public into believing actual weapons of war can be owned by private citizens when they cannot.  The black, scary-looking guns are no different than the brown, wooden stocked guns used for hunting.  Like a tee shirt printed to look like a tuxedo is still a tee shirt, black, scary-looking guns only mimic the cosmetics of actual assault weapons.

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The less one knows about guns the more they fear them.  When you combine that feeling of fear with a lack of knowledge, no one so charged can be expected to form accurate assessments about the subject.  Fear prevents one from becoming knowledgeable and the lack of knowledge results in ignorance.  When your fear is stronger than your intellectual curiosity, you lack understanding and when you lack understanding; your fear has made you a pawn to those who have conquered their fear and now count on yours in order to control you.

 

Those powerful forces shaping the anti-gun narrative gin up the fear factor in order to form the base of their operation.  If you’re scared to death of guns and know nothing about them and want to know nothing about them, you’re being used and exploited as cannon fodder in a dishonest and twisted debate about ultimately disarming America.

 

In the frontier west of the formation of this country in the 19th century, “the great equalizer” was the gun.  Later in the 20th century, Horace Mann called education “the great equalizer.”  Ironically, both of these positions are as true today as they were back then.  People in positions of power seek it exclusively.  They perceive others with power as a threat.  This is why those who lust for power are so afraid of ordinary people possessing anything that challenges them.  Firearms in the hands of a free people make the difference between being subjects or  citizens.

John Lennon was insightful when he wrote the famous Beatle’s song, Power to the People.  What else stands between the ordinary citizen and true tyranny should it come our way, but the power of ordinary people?

Firearms haven’t changed a lot in 134 years, but society sure has.

Murderous maniacs are the problem, not their methods.  Societal choices bear a price.  Dismantle, disregard and dismiss the traditional family structure and face those consequences.  Downgrade, denigrate and deny the existence of God and face that outcome.  Celebrate abortion as a civil right and convince yourself that all is right in the world.  Clearly all is not right.

Edmund Burke reminds us that evil prevails when good people do nothing.  Divine leadership happens in the kingdom of God that blesses families through His grace and our faith.  Human leadership starts in the family unit, lead by fathers on Earth, instructed by God in heaven.  Anything less gets us what we’ve got.  Reality is a harsh teacher.  Look hard at the world in which we live today.  We are choosing evil over righteousness, the easy over the difficult, the soft over the hard, the less over the many; we need a reawakening if we are to survive as the great nation of our founding.

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If we can get back to nourishing healthy families in the spirit of God, we will solve a thousand problems at once and the grace of God will again shine His light upon the exceptional nation of the United State of America.

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Equality?

Members of the US Woman’s National Soccer Team are suing their governing body for gender discrimination regarding compensation levels they view as unfairly low, compared with their male counterparts.

 

In the every-day world of business, figures of between 18 and 22% are commonly bantered about as the pay differential between men and woman.

 

Assuming that all of the above is true, the question becomes, so what?

 

Men and woman aren’t properly measured in groups; we are all individuals, not interchangeable monolithic commodities.  If there is one defining factor unique about America, it is the importance of the individual over the concept of groups.

 

As for wage disparity, anyone can bargain for higher pay.  If athletes, or anyone else, feel they are under-paid, they are free to perform for another organization that agrees on their value and will pay more for it.  If folks can’t or won’t do that, their perceived value is less than the marketplace is willing to pay, and it is the marketplace that ultimately determines value.

 

Each of the 28 named plaintiffs are individuals.  Each of these individuals signed a contract agreeing to the salary and benefits package they are currently enjoying.  None of these woman are claiming they signed under duress, so what is the problem?  Signing that contract was undoubtedly one of the highlights of their careers, so what changed?

 

Perhaps it is jealously of the men’s ability to apparently better negotiate?  Maybe it is embarrassment for failing to be a good negotiators on their own behaves?  Could it be that the marketplace of consumers doesn’t value the woman’s program of soccer as highly as they do the men’s?

 

None of the 28 named plaintiffs would enjoy any notoriety if not for their membership and affiliation with the US Soccer Federation.  It is on this national platform from which they gained access to the wider world audience, a privilege afforded to them courtesy of the United State of American.  That world stage was created by each nation’s national governing body, culminating with the World Cup, sponsored by the international governing body of the sport, FIFA, (International Federation of Association Football.)

 

The 211 member nations governing bodies have built the international platform that the athletes stand upon.  Those nations own that space, the athlete’s job is to perform upon it, not use it as their own bully pulpit.  They are free to do that on their own time, their own dime, and to make perfectly clear, they are expressing their own opinions as individuals,  the terminally disgruntled Primadonna athlete with a chip on her shoulder, not as members of a national team that represents all of America.

 

 

Thanks ladies, for demonstrating the concept of the Ugly American while grossly over-celebrating the shellacking of Thailand, or carelessly dragging the US flag on the ground while hamming for the camera.

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Before the girls get too excited about direct comparisons between male and female competition, let’s have a reality check on performances.  Let’s give credit where due, to the FC-Dallas, boy’s under 15 team who put a thumping to that same US Woman’s team back in 2017 in their preparation for international competition.

 

The US Soccer Federation has been in existence for over 100 years, and 4 years from now, when the next World Cup is played, today’s whining poor sports will be as unrecognizable as the 2015 team, not a single player from which 99% of fans can name.

 

The 2019 World Cup belongs to the United States of America.  Not a single athletes name is engraved on that trophy, not even the country; it simply says FIFA Woman’s World Cup and thank goodness for that.  No one wants to be associated with militant poor sports throwing the F-bomb in public comments.  Good grief these woman had many cheering for the Netherlands!

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And on behalf of the millions of decent, hard-working proud American who play by the rules and enjoy a healthy rivalry, to the rest of the world watching this, I’m sorry; these women don’t accurately represent who we are.

 

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How Conservative Revenue underwrites Liberal Talk Radio

Local talk radio is a luxury only afforded by the revenue streams of the Limbaugh’s, Hannity’s and Levin’s of the national airwaves.  These powerhouses of conservative talk collectively generate the lion’s share of income to some 1300 radio stations serving the entertainment and information needs of over 42 millions listeners each week.  Local radio WNBF-1290AM is one of those outlets.

 

Here in the Southern Tier, the WNBF talk-host is Bob Joseph.  Instead of finding a host with unfettered opinions and the willingness to express and defend them freely, Joseph also doubles as a reporter, pressed into action when the former talk host unexpectedly fell ill some years ago. Because Joseph needs to be sensitive to his credibility as a straight news reporter, this compromises his ability to openly and freely share his opinions, especially on news items he reports on when he wears his reporter’s hat.  Add to this dilemma the fact that while Joseph is a garden-variety liberal in the wide world of conservative talk, he wobbles when taking positions using snarky and sarcastic undertones suggesting insincerity while affording him a comfortable distance from his own words.  Not many of the listener’s share his personal views, which he attempts to disguise through the over-use of sarcasm and being openly facetious.

 

You would think that the abysmal failure of the Air America network of “progressive radio” in 2010 would serve as an example to Joseph, but instead, he doubles down on liberal-leaning rants, no so cleverly cloaked in sarcastic nuance so to provide a convenient escape if and when a listener calls him out.

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How can you have as mentors, the three giants in the arena, and still manage to misunderstand your audience?  When half a dozen callers represent a five days a week regularity to the point that other listeners know them by name, you know your show is in the tank.  After listening and learning from the greats in the business, why would any host stray too far from the successful format they demonstrate each day?

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Without the steady income provided by the big-boys, the lights would soon flicker and the power would be shut off to the transmitter on Ingraham Hill and the swan song of Bob Joseph would trail off into the ether, left to the dredges of Twitter and the stream of photos showing pet dogs and dilapidated old EJ buildings reminiscent of the “good old days.”

 

Truth be told, there is Pulitzer Prize level scandal all around the Southern Tier, just ask John from Binghamton, a daily caller/contributor.  The fact is, Joseph doesn’t have the stones to report it so instead, we get three hours of snark and sarcasm while waiting for the varsity to play.  Joseph ought to end his show every day with a big thanks to Rush for making it all possible, and the bad actors in and around Broome County should thank him and all the other local media midgets for turning a blind eye.

 

Local talk radio is a luxury only afforded by the revenue streams of the Limbaugh’s, Hannity’s and Levin’s of the national airwaves.  These powerhouses of conservative talk collectively generate the lion’s share of income to some 1300 radio stations serving the entertainment and information needs of over 42 millions listeners each week.  Local radio WNBF-1290AM is one of those outlets.

 

Here in the Southern Tier, the WNBF talk-host is Bob Joseph.  Instead of finding a host with unfettered opinions and the willingness to express and defend them freely, Joseph also doubles as a reporter, pressed into action when the former talk host unexpectedly fell ill some years ago. Because Joseph needs to be sensitive to his credibility as a straight news reporter, this compromises his ability to openly and freely share his opinions, especially on news items he reports on when he wears his reporter’s hat.  Add to this dilemma the fact that while Joseph is a garden-variety liberal in the wide world of conservative talk, he wobbles when taking positions using snarky and sarcastic undertones suggesting insincerity while affording him a comfortable distance from his own words.  Not many of the listener’s share his personal views, which he attempts to disguise through the over-use of sarcasm and being openly facetious.

 

You would think that the abysmal failure of the Air America network of “progressive radio” in 2010 would serve as an example to Joseph, but instead, he doubles down on liberal-leaning rants, no so cleverly cloaked in sarcastic nuance so to provide a convenient escape if and when a listener calls him out.

 

How can you have as mentors, the three giants in the arena, and still manage to misunderstand your audience?  When half a dozen callers represent a five days a week regularity to the point that other listeners know them by name, you know your show is in the tank.  After listening and learning from the greats in the business, why would any host stray too far from the successful format they demonstrate each day?

 

Without the steady income provided by the big-boys, the lights would soon flicker and the power would be shut off to the transmitter on Ingraham Hill and the swan song of Bob Joseph would trail off into the ether, left to the dredges of Twitter and the stream of photos showing pet dogs and dilapidated old EJ buildings reminiscent of the “good old days.”

 

Truth be told, there is Pulitzer Prize level scandal all around the Southern Tier, just ask John from Binghamton, a daily caller/contributor.  The fact is, Joseph doesn’t have the stones to report it so instead, we get three hours of snark and sarcasm while waiting for the varsity to play.  Joseph ought to end his show every day with a big thanks to Rush for making it all possible, and the bad actors in and around Broome County should thank him and all the other local media midgets for turning a blind eye.

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The Utopian Ideal of Fairness

It isn’t fair that only a select few people have stood on the summit of Mt. Everest.  Everyone is entitled to see that incredible view from the highest point on Earth, right?

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Wrong.

To the mountain and the attainment of its summit, the concept of, “a level playing field” is a joke.  The only way to climb the highest peak is to prepare, practice, get fit, acclimate, be highly motivated and highly trained.  Like mountain climbing, the normal course of every day life activity does not resemble anything remotely “level.”

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Playing fields are designed by humans, controlled by lines, numbers, fences, referees and rules.  Americans are blessed with the opportunity of the daily adventure of pursuing happiness by way of their God given rights, not government granted successes.  The more level the playing field, the less liberty one has.

The myth of fairness shrouds itself not in the righteous concept of access to opportunity, but in the perverse, socialist ideals of the equality of outcomes.  This warped mentality ignores the human conditions of individualism, ambition, perseverance, leadership and vision.

The summit to the climber, or an ordinary life well lived are both attained by our own actions, not ordained by governments.

 

 

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America’s Finest!

The clueless clamoring over Trump’s tax returns is the liberal’s version of the Obama birth certificate scandal, except that being a natural-born citizen is a constitutional requirement for being the President.  Handing over your tax returns is not.

The Internal Revenue Service, (IRS) is the most aggressive tax collection agency in the world, employing 10,000 auditors.  So what do the liberals want?  They must believe that the audits of Trumps returns are inadequate or they wouldn’t be asking.  Why do they doubt the very agency they created and control?  Had any wrongdoing been found, Trump would have been subject to penalties.

And who better to review and analyze a complex tax return than the likes of say US Representative from Texas, Sheila Jackson Lee, member of the Judiciary Committee and among those demanding his returns.  Representative Lee is famous for confusing her planets when she asked if the Mars Pathfinder was able to photograph the spot where astronaut Neil Armstrong had planted the US flag, (except that was on the moon.)

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Certainly Congresswoman and Science Committee member Lee might be just the brain trust to unravel for us not only the mysteries of space, but of high finance as well.

 

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No Appetite for Change

The Southern Tier doesn’t have a “hunger problem”; it has a nutritional problem in dysfunctional households.  This isn’t from a lack of food, this is the result of families failing their own children.  Local incidents of malnutrition are practically zero.  Poverty and poor nutritional choices positively correlate.  The real medical emergency regarding nutrition is obesity and all of the health concerns stemming from that.  The poorest among us are the most obese.

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If children are going hungry, it is the breakdown of families not of governments.  The illusion of hunger is a marketing tool that massages donor’s guilt to support the charities payrolls.  Childhood obesity is on the rise, especially among the poor.  In Broome County, more than 30,000 people receive SNAP benefits, (food stamps.) There is not a lack of food or its availability, but families incapable of managing adequate households.

With at least eight federal programs available, and nearly every community having a food bank, soup kitchens, church suppers, free lunches, replicated in hundreds of places throughout the area, it strains credulity to accept that anyone is going hungry due to a lack of community care or governmental policies.

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Being poor in America

For the only large grocer on the North side of Binghamton, SNAP is the stores welfare program as one employee told me that approximately 70% of their income comes from some form of government food aid.

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Being poor anywhere else

Some SNAP recipients offer “shopping” services, selling their benefits for 50 cents on the dollar in order to generate cash.  By making the maximum use of all of the free sources of food, combined with their SNAP benefits, those gaming the system create a benefit surplus large enough to sell on the open market of the grocery store parking lot to anyone who pays in cash.  This generates the funds that buys cigarettes, alcohol and drugs.

Food banks and free meal giveaways make the donors think they are doing the Godly, righteous thing.  Tossing a box of cereal or a few cans of vegetables into a CHOW barrel makes for easy, pain-free soul cleansing with the tiniest amount of effort.

Without means testing, (which no local food giveaway does,) no controls are in place in order to calculate the righteousness of those seeking the assistance.  Those defrauding the system are using the good will of decent people that are unwittingly supporting their drug habits, addictions and other vices.

A SNAP program so liberalized as to accept almost anyone is an all-you-can-eat vote-getting machine.  Attempting to regulate the kinds and qualities of foods recipients consume is of no interest to politicians that need them fat and happy enough to keep pulling the lever for politicians that keep the free stuff coming their way.

Knowingly inducing obesity and learned helplessness isn’t Godly it is evil.  However, requiring proper nutritional balance and limiting choice to the most cost-effective brands would buy fewer votes and therefore is an idea without a prayer.

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