Wednesday, March 29, 2017


Sometimes crowdfunding appeals just make me happy.

College for All, but Not a Cent for Most

So the Gov is all over the airwaves encouraging the legislature not to add those millions to the budget on behalf of P-12 schools, because the federal budget is likely to be so lousy for NYS. Nevertheless, his "college affordability plan," being that it's a "modest outlay," can stay in.

College for all, if that were really what this was about, is just fine with me. But let's think about the failure of the state to live up to its required commitment to community colleges, not to mention its consistent and illegal failure to fund our elementary, middle, and high schools. For those who think that government should budget the way households do, this seems like saying, "Well, we don't have enough to pay the mortgage, but this vacation cottage costs a pittance, comparatively, and it will make everyone think we're super cool and ready for a national race!"

BTW, it's just us and North Carolina left in the pantheon of states-that-treat-16-year-olds-as-adults. Can we please stop that?

Monday, March 27, 2017

Running for Local Office

We pulled off 90 minutes on "Running for Local Office" despite all three presenters' being seriously under the weather. Over 40 attendees, about 35 of them new to me. Many eager to run, maybe, some thinking about it in the future, some looking at school board, some just there to learn.

We covered petitioning, caucusing, how the committee helps with finances and messaging, and how to deal with voter lists and door-to-door. It was a lot of information, but most people seemed interested rather than frightened.

Friday, March 24, 2017


You know the kind of book that is SUCH a thriller, you can't put it down? The kind that you read into the wee hours and can't wait to open again in the morning?

That's the kind of book we're in.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

As Homer Goes, So Goes the Nation?

In the Village of Dryden, which is probably 3-2 Republican, the GOP stayed home for the village election, meaning that our two Democratic trustee candidates won handily.

In Homer, a Democrat unseated the incumbent mayor.

In Interlaken, a Democrat won the mayor seat, and a Green was seated on the council.

Groton did not fare as well, but the numbers in Groton are hard to overcome. It remains to be seen whether this is a trend or a blip.

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Cry Bullshit, and Let Slip the Dogs of War

It's not just the President. Any number of people, it seems, are coming up with long diatribes backed by the flimsiest of "facts," and in this world of instant news, the diatribes go viral in minutes. The worst offenders, it appears, are generally labeled "Copy and paste, don't share," presumably so no clue of the dubious origin remains.

So, no, security for Melania and Barron will cost a lot, but not $184 million a year. And no, the budget doesn't directly eliminate Meals on Wheels, though it does cut block grants that may occasionally be used by states to fund programs like Meals on Wheels.

The point is that it's exhausting and honestly impossible to keep up. But everyone who copies and pastes these items reduces by a smidgen any credibility that our side has in facing up to the genuine, reprehensible actions going on daily. We have to call bullshit on the bullshit as we can; stop imagining that just because a trusted friend posted it, it's real; and fight the power, not each other. Plus do our own research whenever possible. It's hard. If we could run the country just by retweeting bullshit, we'd have no problem with the president we've got.