Notes from a quiet street

(The second  of 2016’s random observations far from the front lines of our past, and not worthy of full bloghood).

He was talking about the special interests that influence government, including banks and protected industries.

We want prosperity, but not at the expense of liberty.

Poverty is not as great a danger to liberty as wealth, with its corrupting, demoralizing influences.  Suppose all the influences I have just reviewed were to take their hands off instead of supporting the Republican Party, would it have a ghost of a chance of success?

Let us have prosperity, but never at the expense of liberty, never at the expense of self-government, and let us never have a government…owing its retention to the power of the millionaires rather than the will of the millions.” 

That’s not Democratic Party rhetoric this year.  It’s from a speech given by Joseph Pulitzer in Indianapolis in 1880.

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We got a press release from the St. Louis Archdiocese a few days ago announcing churches throughout the Archdiocese would be taking part in a “Reconciliation Initiative” March 4-5.  The press release arrived about a week after the Bishop said churches should consider dropping sponsorship of the Girl Scouts because the Scouts might lead girls to think of things beyond what the church thinks they should think.

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Nancy’s downstairs listening to the John Denver Channel on Pandora. It’s an internet site that plays whatever music you want to hear.  John Denver would be 72 years old now.  He died more than eighteen years ago.  72.  Kind of hard to envision.  But then James Taylor turned 68 a few days ago and still sounds like James Taylor is supposed to sound.  But still, John Denver would be 72—-

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A sample of legislative efficiency:  The state senate has restored the chamber’s mezzanine beautifully.  But to do it, it had to destroy the offices of its senate information staff.  It moved them into a first-floor hearing room for a while, then into some vacant space in the capitol basement.  Then it moved the capitol press corps out of its spaces on the first floor across the hall from the hearing room up to some offices on the fifth floor that are not handicapped accessible. Then it moved its information staff from the basement into the spaces on the first floor that the press had occupied.  Wonder if it ever occurred to the senate to just move its information people into the fifth floor offices to begin with and save a bunch of effort and hassle.

And now it’s spending more money on another move—getting rid of those pesky reporters at the press table on the senate floor because one of them reportedly (an appropriate word in this instance) did his job by tweeting that the senate leader had told a senator who had been presiding that he should have brought Senator Brian Nieves under control when Nieves went off on one of his embarrassing tirades.  The senate is spending still more moving money to turn an area that has been for public visitors for the last 96 years into a place for people who apparently have been illegal aliens on the senate floor in this capitol—as well as the one built in the 19th century.

We are sure the Senate will give the taxpayers it so aggressively wants to protect a complete final report to the public about how much it has spent, total, to move all these people from top to bottom to top in the Capitol.

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Another example of efficient thinking: Had to get a new computer monitor the other day.  Got one of those 23-inchers (so maybe there will be fewer typos in these entries since the letters are bigger).  Once again, a piece of equipment treated the purchaser like an idiot.  Remember owner’s manuals?  Remember you used to be have directions to things that you could READ?  The box lid for this thing had some drawings that were useful only because this user had hooked up a monitor before.  One drawing appeared to show an “on” switch, which was fine except the screen was still black when a little blue light came on on the front panel.  Inside a plastic bag were some booklets.  Directions?  Oh, no.  Warranties written in most of the world’s known languages.  The user’s manual was on an enclosed disc.   Great.  Except if the monitor is only a black screen, what in Heaven’s name is the user supposed to use to read the directions that tell him how to make the monitor not black?

This user thinks he has been insulted. A person smart enough to have a computer apparently is not smart enough to read an instruction manual on  hooking up the monitor unless he is smart enough to hook up the monitor  so he can see images of the manual. Obviously because you are reading this, the problem got solved, no thanks to the drawings, so the disc with the users’ manual on it is not needed.

Now that the monitor is working, it’s time to plan to do some other things that make about as much sense: check the stock market, make some airline reservations, buy a tankful of gas for the car, wait for the House to rationalize passage of the Wesboro Amendment……

 

Let me know what you think......