Monday, June 05, 2006

Open Forum

Violence continues in Hartford with lawmakers set to unveil a plan to help put a stop to it. The plan apparently includes a cease-fire between neighborhood groups, among other things.

I hope it works, for the sake of these kids who stand to lose the most from the violence.

What else is happening today?

32 comments:

Top-n-Center said...

Enfield moves to welcome a new town manager this evening. Matt Coppler,39, currently the "village manager" of Batavia, NY is expected get unanimous support from the Council tonight and would start July 1st. Onward!

Mmmm Jodi Rell said...

Excellent article in the Courant this weekend about the kids in Hartford and the violence. Really struck home. Hope Jodi and Eddie can show some leadership on this issue.

Mmmm Jodi Rell said...
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Mmmm Jodi Rell said...

So as its an open forum, and nobody's doing or saying anything - looks like John DeStefano was busy this morning.

http://www.myleftnutmeg.com/showDiary.do?diaryId=1461

TrueBlueCT said...

Turn on your TV if you want to know why I more or less hate today's GOP. The political sham which they are engaging in is so horribly divisive.

Just now I am watching some Repuke, (who appears closeted, btw), rant on about "where do you draw the line"? That they are attempting to confuse the debate by bringing up polyamory and polygamy is just plain disgusting. I wonder just what ugliness PA Senator Rick "man-on-dog" Santorum will be spewing.

What Bush is doing might help in the short run, but in the long run he is doing disastrous harm to his own Party. Young people are growing up in a culture that now has little problem with homosexuality, and the Republicans' current intolerance will be remembered long into the future. As well it should be.

The Architect said...

"Though Bush himself has publicly embraced the amendment, he never seemed to care enough to press the matter. One of his old friends told NEWSWEEK that same-sex marriage barely registers on the president's moral radar. "I think it was purely political. I don't think he gives a s--t about it. He never talks about this stuff," said the friend, who requested anonymity to discuss his private conversations with Bush."

Via MSNBC

cgg said...

Apparently they don't even expect the amendment to come to a vote. It's all just grandstanding. What a waste of time and money just to spew hate.

Weicker Liker said...

Has anyone heard anything out of Miriam Masullo and Scott MacLean in the 1st CD?

Masullo recently filed for a Primary.

You would think either of the candidates would want to be visible in the next few months.

CTOctaneBlue said...

I have to agree with cgg- what a terrible waste of time and money. It's really sad that it has come to this for Bush- to get back into the low 30s in his popularity, he needs to blatantly pander to his super-right-wing religious base. One thing I have always wondered- what does Cheney think about this amendment? Sure, he may look like Darth Vader in disguise, but he does have a daughter who is openly gay and probably doesn't support a CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT banning gay marriage.

Also- did anyone see Joe Biden on MTP yesterday? I was impressed, and although he just may be crazy, he could be what this country needs as a president. Apparently he thinks that we should split up Iraq into three different states, one for each ethnic group, similar to what happened in the Balkans in the 90s. When you consider the fact that the British artificially created the political borders of Iraq back in the day, basically forcing three completely distinct ethnic groups who hate each other to live together (and we all know what happened then...), Biden's plan actually makes a lot of sense. But oh the "political will" needed to implement it.. I'm not sure even McCain has them, nevermind Bush!

Weicker Licker said...

Weicker Liker said... "
Has anyone heard anything out of Miriam Masullo and Scott MacLean in the 1st CD?"



Poor Scott hasn't been seen anywhere in quite a while

TrueBlueCT said...

Octane--
Divvying up Iraq would be great, except that Turkey won't accept an independent Kurdish state.

Read more here.

I guess Kurds make up 20-30% of Turkey's population. They are concentrated in the Southeast along the Iraq border, and there is a history of Kurdish uprisings in the hopes of gaining their own independence.

So Turkey would be a huge hurdle to Biden's "plan". Plus who would control the oil? The Shi'a as backed by Iran?

CTOctaneBlue said...

Ah yes- I did forget that there is a considerable Kurdish population in Turkey, and that the Turks would do everything possible to prevent an Iraqi Kurdish state (presumably because the Turkish Kurds would try to secede and join the Iraqi Kurds). But wait- wasn't the Turkish border just another one of those borders arbitrarily created by the British and French when they dismantled the Ottoman Empire? (For those interested, it's the Sykes-Picot Agreement). Hmm...

I agree that the oil will remain a big problem for the forseeable future. Certainly the oil companies are doing (and will continue to do) nothing to investigate and promote alternative fuels- and why would they? They are raking in the cash! Drilling for oil in Alaska is also NOT the answer- I wish republicans would just give up that pipe dream. The real solution would be for a strong leader to try and mandate changes to fuels- how many billions are we giving to farm subsidies again this year, to grow corn that no one eats?

I heard that the Iranians are now threatening to cut off all the oil coming out of the Persian Gulf... that could be problematic.

CTOctaneBlue said...

Just so we're all on the same page, corn can be turned into ethanol, which can be used like gasoline in cars. Brazil switched from oil to ethanol already, and now they're relatively energy independent. It would probably work here in the US as well, but the big oil lobby would NEVER allow it. Alas those damn special interests!

TrueBlueCT said...

luckily we have Joe Lieberman to fight the Big Oil companies for us!
[snark]

GMR said...

It's the farm lobby that is blocking more use of ethanol. We could import ethanol from Brazil, but there's a big tariff. Our farmers would not be very competitive, and they've lobbied to have the large tariff.

Big oil companies do make a lot of profit, but only because they are big, not because they are significantly marking up the price. The oil industry has become fairly consolidated (at least, if you are a vertically integrated oil company, you're probably pretty big by now for efficiency purposes).

ExxonMobil in the past 12 months has made $36 billion in profit on $339 billion in sales. About 10%. Chevron Texas made $15.42 billion on $198.45 billion in sales, so about 8%.

Microsoft made $13.5 billion on sales of $42.64 billion, so about 32%. Some other profit percentages: IBM, 9.27% on $88.9 billion; Caterpillar 8.32% on $37.4 billion; Disney 8.22% on $32.33 billion; 3M 15.41% on $21.6 billion; Apple Computer 9.97% on $17.3 billion; McDonalds 12.41% on $20.76 billion.

I guess another problem is that if we did adopt ethanol use on a widespread basis, the web and tv commercials would be full of people making the argument that the amount of corn your car used when you went to the movies could feed a family in the third world, and isn't it terrible that by your driving, you are taking food out of their mouths? Trust me, that argument would almost certainly be used if food products were used to power cars.

TrueBlueCT said...

Trust me, that argument would almost certainly be used if food products were used to power cars.

GMR-
Thanks for bringing up your "fact" {that there are starving people in this world}. Unfortunately your made-up "fact" just isn't true; you just use it to attack liberals, --who pretend to care about world poverty.

This happy consumer never listens to the left-wing dominated 24/7 news channels. Instead I watch Stephen Colbert. Trust me, he gets it.

CTOctaneBlue said...

GMR - good point, I forgot about the tariffs on agricultural products. I'm definitely not an expert on this stuff, but here's a thought:

It's much cheaper to grow corn in South America and then ship it by boat to the US, than it is to grow corn (and many other fruits/vegetables) domestically. The Federal Government long ago had to enact tariffs to keep domestic corn viable as an industry, as there is a LOT of farm land in this country, and a LOT of people employed in the agricultural industry. But the Feds still need to bail out the agricultural industry every year- I just saw that it is going to be something like 2.6 billion dollars this year- because it is just too expensive to farm in the US, compared to other nations. This domestic produce cannot be priced competitively with foreign produce. I propose that a significant amount of domestic corn be converted into ethanol. The oil companies could get in on the action, by funding the construction (and assuming ownership) of factories that convert this corn into ethanol. US automakers could decide to make cars that run on the ethanol- this would help the American auto industry, at least until the other automakers catch up. I'll admit that the start-up costs would be huge, but then again as GMR pointed out, the oil companies made $36 billion in profit in ONE year! It's really a shame that no congressional or senate leaders are pushing this idea- energy independence is the right thing for our country.

MikeCT said...

Y'all come down to MoveOn's rally outside Nancy Johnson's New Britain office on Wednesday, June 7 at noon.

“In November of last year, Rep. Nancy Johnson voted against imposing strict penalties against war profiteers like Halliburton. We’ll hold an event to call for Rep. Johnson to return the thousands of dollars she received from defense contractor PACs – money that could have influenced her profiteer-protecting vote. We’ll also deliver letters from MoveOn members to her office,” Eli Pariser, MoveOn’s executive director, announced online.

MoveOne says Johnson took $72,300 from defense contractors.

“Many of the companies who would've been penalized by measures to protect the military from being overcharged are among her campaign contributors,” MoveOn said.


Here are directions to the office, courtesy of Nancy. And who can forget MoveOn's oldie but goodie "Red Handed" prescription drug ad?

GMR said...

In Brazil, they make ethanol from sugar cane. It's much more economical to use sugar cane than corn, as sugar cane produces more energy, and is a lot easier to grow.

Most cars can already run on a mix of 15% ethanol. Some can run on a mix of up to 85% ethanol.

Ethanol is difficult to ship via pipelines because it reacts with water, so it has to go via train or truck over land.

If we were serious about ethanol, we'd nix the ethanol tariff. This would likely mean, however, that we'd import most of our ethanol, because Brazil can grow sugar a lot more efficiently than we can.

Ethanol does take a lot of energy to make a gallon, much more than gasoline, so that's also a factor.

CTOctaneBlue said...

Well done. Looks like I definitely don't know what I'm talking about!

Gabe said...

I'm pretty sure that all cars can already run on 10-15 ethanol and that all cars can run on up to 85% ethanol with a conversion kit (mainly new fuel pumps and fuel lines).

Also, don't forget vegetable oil as an alternative fuel for cars. All diesel cars can take it with a conversion kit. There is an interesting article about vegetable oil-powered cars in Western Mass in UMASS Magazine, here.

Wellstone 13 said...

The other day I noticed at DSCC Website www.dscc.org how blatantly their Connecticut page ignores that Lieberman has a challenger named Lamont. (What will they do after our Primary victory, make a quick link to www.nedlamont.com ?)

Today, I note DSCC has a Blog. Join me, and post on your blogs promoting your readers to do the same, let's pound the DSCC Blog www.fromtheroots.org with messages from subtle to outraged asking for acknowledgement of this race by DSCC and also raising awareness of Ned Lamont nationwide.

I seem to have a little trouble registering right now, until they delete the username for my email address. But the Terms of Service seem to say that other than their right to moderate and ask for modification or removal, find their rules generally center around this: "Those users posting material not suitable for all audiences must agree that they are fully responsible for all the content they have posted anywhere on the service and allow DSCC to delete any content deemed inappropriate, offensive, libelous, or slanderous."

We know the power of word spreading through the Blogs, a few posts here and there and many individuals may register at DSCC and spread awareness of Ned Lamont's very viable challenge of Joe Lieberman. Perhaps if a message says "Don't donate to DSCC they are Pro Lieberman" it will not be appreciated. I bet some will get through to the fromtheroots Blog and its readers AND we have OTHER messages that won't be so controversial.

Chris MC said...

Well done. Looks like I definitely don't know what I'm talking about!

Very generous, even courageous of you, CTOB. Your posts produced that substantive and useful thread, and we could definitely stand plenty more where that came from. Thanks for leading in that way. Takes something to put it out there like that.

Your post is an opening onto the much larger discussion of BTU's and what it takes to provide them, and what it costs.

Not to incite the wild-eyed lefites but (for example), if you calculate the cost-savings in defense spending that would be available in a world that didn't require a secure petroleum source and a balanced petrodollar, you have a very different equation to base the conversation on. I think.

But I don't really know what I'm talking about either, so there ya go....

TrueBlueCT said...

Chris Mc--

Will you go on the record as to your support for Lieberman? Obviously you believe in the DLC ticket, Lieberman & Malloy.

I hope it's not too much to ask you to go on the record as to the Iraq Occupation.

CT64 said...
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CT64 said...
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CT64 said...

Now holding rallies outside Nancy's office? MoveOn should do exactly what their name says MOVE ON! If you want any shot for Nancy's opponent you will let him run his own campaign and don't cause controversy such as the wonderful ads that MoveOn releases and rallies outside an opponent's office. It must be nice not to have any accountability for anything you do or put out for the public to see.

Ever wonder why some TV stations won't even play your commercials?

bluecoat said...

Gabe: Brazil uses E-85 and the cars are mostly Detroit Iron - the cost to make them E-85 compatible is reportedly nil if done on the assembly line...and I think the Constitutional Ammendment making it to the Senate floor again is part of Bill Frist's energizing his base to run for Prez...sure....

Gabe said...

Bluecoat - that is my understanding as well: If the E85 conversion is done at manafacture, the only cost is the difference between ordinary fuel pumps and fuel lines and ones that can handle ethanol - negligible when compared to the price of a car.

Chris MC said...

Had lunch with a friend today who is a retired petroleum engineer and executive from a big oil company.

Funny, out of nowhere he starts talking about this very subject. Said that the problem with ethanol is that it is technically very difficult to produce, and thus expensive. Something about the fact you can't boil the water out of it because the boiling point of ethanol is too similar or something. So it has to be made using a kind of distillation process.

Also, ethanol is water soluable! If it sees water, big problems. He said you have to have dedicated equipment to transport and deliver it, and more that I can't clearly remember.

Also confirmed what GMR posted about the fact that sugar cane is a much higher value source than corn.

bluecoat said...

Notwithstanding the expertise of GMR and ChrisMc's lunch partner here is some technical skinny on ehtanol.

Chris MC said...

Just to be clear, I am entirely receptive to alternative fuels. I don't think the economics of BTU's are well understood, definitely not by me.

This organization looks like an astroturf kind of thing at first blush, but maybe it's worth looking over the technical stuff....