Minnesota’s Bid for the Final Four- another bad idea.

Apparently Minnesota is in the final running for the NCAA Final Four, which will be held at the brand spankin’ new Vikings Stadium brought to you by taxpayers of Minnesota.

I’m not sure how much we’ll wind up paying for the NCAA’s, hopefully slightly less than we did for the Super Bowl. On the radio this afternoon there was a dialogue about great this stadium is going to be and how fantastic it was that were even able to get the game. And now the NCAA, imagine that.

And just when you thought it was safe to reach into your wallet, I heard today that the Stadium Commission is going after the NCAA Championship Football Game.

Next target for the sports commission, the NCAA Football Championship Game. I can’t wait to learn how much that little event is going to cost in concessions and tax nreaks…

I can only imagine.

There’s a glimmer of hope out there…

Last week the Norwegian Government informed the International Olympic Committee (IOAC) that the city of Oslo would be withdrawing their bid for the 2022 Winter Olympics. Reason cited, lack of public support. Turns out they weren’t the first city to back out of hosting the Olympics, Krakow Poland and Stockholm Sweden also pulled out due to lack of political support. Which leaves Beijing China and Almaty Kazakhstan. So, we got one city that’s 150 miles away from the nearest mountain and another that’s 5 connections from any civilized airport in the world.

Turns out, Olympic demand ain’t what it used to be. The Sochi Olympics cost Russia a cool $51B. All at public expense. St. Moritz and Munich pulled their bids early after public uproar about spending tax dollars to pay for what is essentially big business sport.

I wish we had the same public angst here in the US about this stuff.

So what exactly do we get out of these events? A little exposure for Minnesota. A few temporary jobs and that’s about it. Not many of us commoners are going to going to these games. We’ll pay for them with taxes and subsidies.

Ironic given the ad revenue and TV contracts that these leagues are pulling in.

With the NCAA it’s even more disgusting given that they don’t event pay their performers. It’s all about the dollars and the cash flow, flowing from our pockets to theirs.

1 Comment

Filed under Life

Racism Reduex

Somewhere between 3500 and 5000 Native American’s and their supporters showed up at the Gophers football stadium to protest a game between the Vikings and Washington. Protest is one that’s had a lot of press lately, the name of the Washington team.

It’s racist.

Totally, unforgivingly racist.

No ifs, ands or buts it’s flat out racist. White folks, stop try to argue otherwise, it’s not pretty.

The NFL argues that the name is supposed to “honor” Native Americans. I suppose by celebrating their bold fighting spirit? Makes no difference, natives don’t want to be a mascot, simple solution, change the name.

If the Irish want to be celebrated by the University of Notre Dame, so be it. But what if they were the Micks? What if they mascot was a drunk, what if they celebrated touchdowns by beating women (like in the NFL- oops) I’m pretty sure they’d change the name.

And if you had any doubt what so ever, go read the comments on any of the news stories online that reported the protest yesterday.

A lot of white people spent a lot of vitriol defending the undefendable. Since they really don’t have a logical argument they dropped to some of the same arguments we heard when African American’s wanted eat at the same lunch counter as Whites. Apparently the people who are racist don’t like being called racists and lash out when the truth is thrown in their face.

Some comments-

  • These people need to get a life.
  • If I say it’s not racist it’s not racist because I’m not a racist.
  • Maybe they should change the name to Welfare Alcoholics. ( Verbatim from the MSN comments)
  • This is political correctness, and that’s bullshit.

What this is my White friends who have tried to argue with me about this, is Indian people finding their voice after 400 years. As far as the political correctness argument goes, I would invite to talk to you Native friends, if you have any, and call them Redskins, see what they think. I imagine there are some who wouldn’t take offense, at least to your face, but if you don’t feel at least a little remorse in that exercise, you might as well use every other racial epithet to describe people who aren’t like you, because frankly, you’re a racist.

I’ve overheard my friends bragging about making a great deal by announcing that they “Jew’d the guy down”. Same folks then go to great length on discovering that I was within earshot, how it’s “just a term” and “didn’t mean any bad by it”. Probably celebrates the business acumen of Jews. Not that I have any.. Neighbor has told me about his father in rural Minnesota who has told him time and again that it’s “hard to do business with Jews they’re dishonest”. “Dad, have you ever met a Jew?” “No but I know they cheat Christians”.

Is he racist? Is that phrase racist? Dumb question. Your using a stereotype and label to portray people in a way they don’t want be portrayed, so stop it. For the last 100 years or so Indians have been portrayed in the media with some very specific stereotypes that have left most White people unable to understand that in fact, Indian Country is as diverse as Europe. Navajo people would have as much in common with Germans as they would with Iroquois. At least they would have in pre-contact America. Now they can share the experience of being discriminated against and ridiculed, which stings collectivley. Like they do every time the Redskins take the field. Enough is enough, change the damn name.

1 Comment

Filed under Life

Election Day Thoughts

Election day 2014- years of voting a straight Democratic ticket are coming to an end. 

I’m a liberal in my heart of hearts but I’m also pragmatic and I am NOT an ideologue. I like to think that I consider issues thoughtfully and do my bestest [sic] to avoid partisanship. And with that in mind here’s what I’m thinking about Tuesday’s elections in Minnesota. 

Governor- Jeff Johnson. Actually I would more likely vote for Hannah Nicollet, the Independence Party candidate but, and this is after years of support IP candidates by volunteering and voting for them, I have come to the sad conclusion that voting for a third party today, despite what Ralph Nader would say, is in fact, throwing away my vote. 

Why Johnson, why Republican? Bottom line, Mark Dayton can’t lead. Never could. Not since he evacuated his Senate office in 2004 because he was afraid of a terror threat which oddly no ever Senator felt compelled to react too. 

Dayton has dropped the ball on a bunch of stuff

  • Vikings stadium. In his debate with Johnson a few weeks ago he made the following comments 1) The Vikings were going to move I had no options to negotiate. and 2) We told that we would not let the team go. Worlds worst negotiator or just stupid? Or both? Either way he cost taxpayers $600M by pandering to the NFL Cartel. Then to make it worse, he was “surprised” his scheme to raise $200M in a shitty bar gambling came, pulltabs, hasn’t paid off. Lame.  
  • And since it’s not his money, he gave them another $90M in tax breaks, plus a general ass raping of Minnesota businesses to “let” the NFL host their biggest annual party of the year here the Super Bowl. Go read the Star Tribunes published report on what we had to give the non-profit NFL to buy a Super Bowl. . No responsibility.
  • MNSure. I’m a supporter of European style not for profit heathcare. I wish we could figure out how to do it here. Matter of fact so much so that I think my son is better off staying in Israel where he can get decent health care rather than move back to the US where the privilege of real care is for the privileged. But the way MNSure was rolled out.. disaster. System problems all over the place because the company charges with bringing it online, failed.  And who was supposed to be checking to make the sure the contractors who we paid to do the work could actually do the work? Dayton was in charge when that happened and to his credit he as said, “I won it”. To late Mark. 
  • Minnesota’s economy is dong quite well these days, unemployment below 5%, 1.2B surplus. But even in this environment the only campaign issue Dayton has been consistent on in the last two elections- the need to raise taxes to pay for programs and infrastructure. The Vikings stadium BTW, doesn’t count as infrastructure. 
  • MetCouncil/Transportation. Here in Apple Valley we have the Red Line- and dedicated express bus line from Apple Valley to the Mall of America. $113M cost to build the line, current ridership, according the local paper 113 per day. That’s 5 people per bus. Surprised? No parking allowed at any stop except the two transit stations. Now way to cross Cedar to get on a opposite direction buses. Why? Because the Met Council forgot to include the cost of overpasses, another couple million, in the original contract. While Dayton wasn’t directly involved in the design and development of the line, the Met Council was, the majesty of Public Transport outweighed the reality that the line was a dead end, on both ends. And BTW the spending isn’t over, this has become it’s own self serving industry what millions allocated for more studies, more facilities and literally everything except building a route that someone wants to ride. What a waste of taxpayers money. 

Senator- Al Franken

I have to admit I’ve been really shocked by Al Franken the Senator. He’s done a decent job, which frankly I didn’t think he’d do given his SNL experience. Al’s taken the right positions on local issues like the farm bill, mental health coverage. He opposed wall street bailouts i like that. Was very supportive of Israel in their war with Hamas. 

End of the day, he deserves a trip back to the Senate. 

Congress- Mike Obermuller. Our current congressman John Kline has been disaster. He’s as partisan as they come. The last several elections the Democrats have run shitty unelectable candidates against Kline and he deserved to beat them, he was a far better candidate. Now however, Obermuller has a sold plan of attack for education and health care. Klein has a history of avoiding debates, he doesn’t like to talk about issues. After listening to his debate with Obermuller, a week ago, I know why, he can’t talk to issues. It’s time for John to come home, we need a change. 

Mayor- Anyone but Mary. She’s a disaster. Transit boondoggle, she hasn’t met a project she didn’t like and now we have a bus to nowhere. New business? Apple Valley’s center core is mess. Half filled lots, dying strip malls, roundabouts to nowhere. She’s terrible and no one holds her accountable. 10 years of happy talk for nothing. She’s got to go. 

There you have it. My thoughts on election day 2014. Get out and vote, and tell I told ya so. 

Leave a comment

Filed under Life

Random Stuff

Some assorted acts of randomness because when it comes to posting, something is better than nothing don’t you think? 

I posted a little humorous graphic on my little Facebook page  with the caption “ ‘ I just need to see a couple more political ads on TV then I’ll make my decision’ said no one ever.” I couldn’t agree more frankly. But to be honest, the only  I’ve been exposed to this election season have been during the World Series and college football games. Live sports being the only bastion of live TV left in our house. And even those ads were muted, we mute the ad breaks and God Bless America segments of the broadcasts. 

Not that not patriotic, I just think baseball games are too long to begin and this whole singing yet another “national anthem” like song in the middle of the game to show that we are even more patriotic now that we were before we start doing this is at best disingenuous. 

Exile me to Canada if you must. 

Speaking of ads and disingenuousness, the ad where the dude comes home in the morning after a night a drinking where brags to his dog about his being all responsible and shit and not driving home last night. I’d like to see a second  later when he notices that his house smells like the big pile of dog shit on the carpet. “cuase that it would work at our house. 

Might not even take an overnight to get that result. 

Speaking of Giggs I had an epiphany about him today. If you know me personally you know the dog follows me around everywhere. Personally I find him one the best dogs I’ve ever owned from a runs away and do what I told him perspective. The problem is the rest of the family, they all hate him. Two kids have been bit by him, nothing serious just a nip here and there to keep them in line and everyone except me has been growled. Actually everyone one know who’s met the dog has been growled at. Hell I’ve been growled at. I don’t take however has he’s learned. 

The problem with Giggs, and many corgi’s, especially the Cardigan kind, are working dogs as such are genetically inclined to attach themselves to one person. And for Giggs, that person is me. I’m the boss and he, I’ve decided is the Assistant Boss. Which is why he sees it as his role to keep the other dogs in line around here with the occasional nip. I’m cool with it, the rest of the pack, not so much. 

Empty Nesting Trauma

I’ve cooked Thanksgiving dinner for a crowd the last 15-20 years or so, it’s sort of my thing. This year our dinner list has dropped to zero. Basically it will be just the four of us, two kids and two parents. To bad it’s not a Auburn Iron Bowl year for Auburn, I had suggested to the kid that if we had other plans for Thanksgiving this would be a good year to execute on them as there’s no reason to come home, nothing going on here. 

I’ve been in trouble with Mrs S before, but this was a big one. 

1 Comment

Filed under Life

Turkey Makes A Choice

Can The Djin Go Back in the Bottle?

Earlier this week it was interesting to see Turkish policies
regarding ISIL, be exposed for the world, and specifically her NATO allies to
see. There’s been some question in Western capitals about who’s side exactly
Turkey is on in the fight against these militants. Up until yesterday it
certainly looked like they were doing the unthinkable and supporting the
terrorists.

-       
Turks were not allowing the US or her Arab
allies to use forward Turkish airbases to attack ISIL targets in Syria and
Iraq.

-       
Turkish Kurds were being kept from entering
Syria to help defend Kobani from ISIL.

-       
ISIL has realeased 49 Turkish hostages, Turkey
claims no ransoms were paid, a covert operation was launched. That doesn’t
really explain how 49 people, including men, women and children were released
from the center of ISIL territory, transported to Mosul and brought home with
not a shot fired. By hey, it’s their story, their sticking too it.  Reality is there was probably an exchange of
hostages.

-       
There have been pro-ISIL demonstrations in
Ankara an Istanbul in recent weeks, fundamentalist Islam is not dead in Turkey.

Now we hear the Turks have “changed” their mind and are allowing
the Kurds in move into Iraq. For sure securing Turkish nationals changes the
Turkish calculus in this engagement; it frees their hands a little bit. I’m
also guessing that Edrogan and his Islamic AKP party is has realized that
Islamic Fundamentalists on their southern borders are far worse than the
Kurdish state they’ve been fighing against for the last 40 years.

Edrogan came to power in Turkey 2003, as many moderate
Islamic politicians do, by promising to clean up corruption. Religious folks
seem to have the monopoly on that argument. He maintains his power base in
rural Turkey away from the secular cities. During the Arab Spring he spent a
lot of time flying around the Middle East promoting pan Islamic cooperation and
a new alliance of Middle Eastern countries that would be self-reliant and not
dependent on the West.

Along the way he’s consolidated power, removed the
opposition where ever he can and introduced more  restrictions on the press and social
media/internet usage. He’s led a shift towards Islamic law in Turkey, which
traditionally has been a non starter in Turkey due her 80 year tradition of
secular reforms introduced after the fall of the Ottoman Empire by the modern
state of Turkey’s founder, Kemal Ataturk.

Now I have to wonder if Edrogan’s Islamic genie is starting
to have concerns. It’s one thing to leverage nationalism and religious fervor
to make political gain, but what happens when you can’t controls the fervor?
Clearly the Turks are trying to choose between two realities, supporting the
Kurds, with whom they’ve fought an on again, off again low grade war for 40
years or more. Or do they hold back the Kurds and in doing so, give tacit
support to ISIL.

0
0
1
491
2805
Target
23
6
3290
14.0

Normal
0

false
false
false

EN-US
JA
X-NONE

/* Style Definitions */
table.MsoNormalTable
{mso-style-name:”Table Normal”;
mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0;
mso-tstyle-colband-size:0;
mso-style-noshow:yes;
mso-style-priority:99;
mso-style-parent:””;
mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt;
mso-para-margin-top:0in;
mso-para-margin-right:0in;
mso-para-margin-bottom:8.0pt;
mso-para-margin-left:0in;
line-height:107%;
mso-pagination:widow-orphan;
font-size:11.0pt;
font-family:Calibri;
mso-ascii-font-family:Calibri;
mso-ascii-theme-font:minor-latin;
mso-hansi-font-family:Calibri;
mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin;}

It would appear that they’ve chosen to support the Kurds,
pragmatically kicking the Kurdish issue down the road to deal with a more ominous
reality. A fundamentalist Sunni state on Turkey’s southern border would have
serious implications on Turkey’s internal politics. A rise of Islamic Fundamentalism
in Turkey would be a fire that even Edrogan would have trouble putting out.

2 Comments

Filed under Edrogan, ISIL, ISIS, KURD, Kurdistan, Kurds, Turkey

When do we get serious about Ebola?

Pardon me for being an alarmist, 99% of the time I’m not a conspiracy guy or one who gets too excited about things.. but this Ebola business…

When things were getting bad in Africa, I wasn’t particularly worried, after all I’ve been told for a million years all the reason that Ebola couldn’t come to the US, and if it did, why we would be able to contain it quickly, this isn’t a failed third world African country after all, this is the US. Modern western countries know how to deal with this. 

Besides: 

  • You can only get it from direct contact with body fluids. Granted Ebola patients tend to leak a lot of fluids.
  • Modern medical procedures, isolation practices, gowns, visors etc will prevent secondary infections. 
  • Public Health policies will enable us to track folks who might be exposed and contain the contagion. 

All summed up the messages have been “not to worry America, we have this under control”. 
Well pardon me for be alarmed. 

  • Modern medical prodecures have failed in three known cases so far. More to come I bet. Sad thing is, we don’t really know exaclty how what happened. 
  • The Dallas Patient Zero had to go to the ER TWICE to get treated, despite telling folks that he’d just come from the Ebola hot zone. Did he bother mention that he’d cared for a woman dying of the disease? Don’t know. 
  • Apparently he sat in a room with other patients, shedding virus through vomit and other displeasurable things for 90 minutes. 
  • The Dallas hospiltal where he was a patient has reported 72 people had direct contact with him has part of his care team. But, assured the CDC, they’re all being monitored. 
  • Today we learn a second hospital worker has become infected and that the night before she started having a fever… aka showing symptoms, she was on a comercial flight, with 100+ other folks. 

So, how exactly are working to contain this virus? I’m actually getting a little concerned to be frank. 
My favorite quote of the day, a college in Texas has decided to ban students from any country in Africa that isn’t free from Ebola. Ironic given that Texas is currenlty not free from it and the Texas Department of Health seems to be operating at about the same level of effectiveness as the Liberian Ministry of Health. 

One of the issues here is we seem to be intersecting political correctness with or pandemic response, which is bullshit. 

My questions for the gang at the CDC and our President- 

  • So, we’re screening passengers from LIberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea, the areas hardest hit. Great, why are we even allowing flights from those countries to land on US soil? On something that spreads this easily and has a 50% mortality rate, shouldn’t we maybe err on the side of caution? 
  • And why are we sending the US Military into those countries? If we can’t protect professional health care workers we sure as hell aren’t going to be able to protect soilders. Personally, I think I’d rather face ISIL if I was in the Military. Then, what do we do with all those soldiers when they get home and start getting sick? I’m sure they’ll be 100% upfront and honest and report to the isolation ward at the first sign of illness. [sic]
  • So, people who are exposed to this deadly virus and as such are identified as being at risk to contract and spread the disease, we’re monitoring these people closely? Apparenlty monitoring doesn’t include making them stay off a fucking airplane? For 30 days or so stay home, go to your hospital job where we can keep an eye on you, but don’t get on a damed plane. BTW, apparenly the CDC is now working with the airlines to figure out who the passengers are so we can “monitor” them. I have to ask, what about the 1000’s of people she potentially interacted with at the airport. Did she shed virus at anytime when she was there? 
  • Do we even know how this is spread. Nothing else we’ve been told has been 100% honest, to be honest. 

Bottom line in my heart of hearts I don’t think this is going to be a pandemic like some doomsday folks would describe. My concern is why the HELL we aren’t treating this with over due caution as opposed to what looks from the outside anyway, like the minimum requirements. When SARS was going through Hong Kong, and granted it was spread via aerosol, making it much more contagious, the authorities in Hong Kong locked down an entire housing development until NO NEW CASES were present. 

It seems to me that this would be the same protocol for Ebola, because frankly the CDC, the Texas Department of Health and the WHO haven’t proven that they know how to contain this thing. 

Addendum- 
Before we all jump off the deep end on this- a little bit of good news to keep you sane. 
So far, and now we’re approaching the 21 day window of for incubation we have NOT seen any infection with the family he was staying with, nor the ambulance first responders who brought him to the hospital on September 29. This supports the CDC’s statement that as the patent deteriorates they become more infectious. More importantly it  should help the people on the Frontier Airlines flight feel a bit better about their chances of not being exposed to the virus. 
With 5000 cases in the last few months in Liberia, we have learned a thing or two about the disease. This is good. 
The two nurses who have contracted the disease were involved in the patents care throughout the entire 10 days he was in the hospital including his last two days when he experienced complete organ failure and intensive bleeding. 
It still doesn’t excuse the actions of the Texas Department of Health. As a matter of fact the second Ebola patent is being evacuated out of Texas, she’s being sent to Emory University Hospital in Atlanta where there’s experience and expertise dealing with this disease. 

I’m certain there’s more to come on this. 

2 Comments

Filed under CDC, Ebola, Ebola Transmission, Epidemic, Frontier Airlines, Guinea, Ivory Coast, Liberia, Pandemic, Texas Department of Health, WHO

Long Overdue Dude

Whew
it’s been a week or two here SankWorld. I’d like to think we’re getting to the
point where things are getting better, but I don’t really see that happening.

Which
is a bad thing given a little health scare I had a week or so ago. I’’ve been
told to do something’s differently. Both by the physician and by the resident
RN around here, Mrs S. 60 hour work weeks once in awhile, you do what you have
to to do, but every week… there’s a price for that and I’m going to wind up
paying it.

So change is in the works.

Wroks
the easy one, it’s the weight loss that I have to get done as part of this
that’s going to suck.

Ass.

But
no time like the present. Jewish New Year and all, the official time for making
changes. So lets get it done, before the choices aren’t mine anymore.

On more uplifting news-

It’s Fall here in the  Soon To be Great White
North. That means fall colors time. Lots of fall colors. Amazing fall colors
this year thanks to the 25” of rain we got back in June. Trees had lot of
nutrients to make great foliage or some damned thing.

Fall is, hands down, my favorite time of the year. Bugs are gone, the world around
here is painted gorgeous, crisp nights make sleeping easy.. so much to like.
Made it out for some fall fishing on Saturday. Launched the boat at 7:30 am, it
was 25 degrees out. Boat ride at 25 degrees means no need for coffee.

But it was well worth it for the photos I took…Enjoy

4 Comments

Filed under Life