Wednesday, October 26, 2011

A little hopscotching around

1. Edited Thursday AM

Probably by the time you read this, we'll kinow for sure; but I didn't particularly like the weather forecasts for the past few days; However, this morning it has all changed, once again..  This is only October and there's SNOW already in the forecast.  Sure, the ground, especially here along the coast, isn't cold enough to have any accumulation, but I don't even want to see snowflakes flying around right now.  As I mentioned, it now appears that storm will pass us by and we won't see that snow after all.  Nevertheless, it's still too darn early to be scaring us. 1.  This morning's weather seems to be a little contradictory to the forecast we were getting yesterday.  Even snow flurries have returned to the forecast.  It was simply 'yucky' outside this morning.

Shucks.  The weather forecasts are so disturbing that one of my last-Wednesday-of-the-month (that, incidentally, is today!) lunch buddies is leaving Friday for his winter home in Florida.  Actually, it's his legal home as he headed south when he retired to get away from Maine's income taxes.  He's found lots of things he had in Maine not to be in Florida.  Automobile excise tax, for example.  On the other hand, he says some things are more expensive down there.  But there's no state income tax.

I'm not a police officer, never have been one, and the chances of ever being one are nil at best.  But I get a kick out of watching the brave officers on TV cops shows when they enter a place, especially a dark place, seeking out a villain.  I don't know if real cops do it or not, but I watch in amazement how they hold a gun in one hand right in front of themselves and a light of some sort in the other hand right in front of their head.  Every time I get to thinking just how nice and thoughtful it is for these TV good guys to give that waiting villain a clear, well lit target.  It is fun watching them.  And I think the method is used in every cop show on TV.

Election day is now less than two weeks away.  The gambling interests have already geared up big time to get you to vote to approve more gambling facilities in Maine.  One of the fun parts of all the activity, though, is watching them feud among themselves on questions 2 and 3 on the ballot.  I say it's easy to solve that conflict:  vote "no" on both.  The promoters, though, have seized upon a good theme during these economic times.  They claim gambling will create thousands of jobs.  Personally, I think that's a very dubious claim, but I have no statistics to back up my feelings.  All I can say is I have travelled around the country and at least driven through communities that have gambling facilities.  They haven't looked too prosperous to me.  Has anyone looked into the economic impact in other places?  If they have, I've missed it.

All that out of state money is working hard to get you to vote to repeal the new law that limits voter registration to take place before election day.  The arguments for repeal are so specious that I'd bet many people are believing them.  The new law simply does not limit anyone's right to vote.  Even if registering on election day is the only recourse for new voters or people who have recently moved, registration and voting can still take place the same day in early registration.  What the new law does do is give local officials time to confirm residency, something that can't happen with election day registration.  I can't help but wonder just what mischief repealers are planning for election day.

Sure, massive voter fraud hasn't been proven in Maine; but in Maine once a ballot is cast, it can no longer  be challenged.  Sort of limits the ability to prove fraud, doesn't it?

By the way, I wonder just how many really do have to register the same day anyway.  After all, only if you're a new resident, a recently moved resident, or one just reaching voter age do you have to register anyway.  For everyone else, once registered, it's for life as long as you continue to vote.

I think the new law is a good beginning to restoring the credibility of the election process.  I still wish it would take the next step and require identification and residency proof to vote.  Forty-four other states do not follow the Maine model.  Now why could that be?

If I lived in Florida, I'd never want to serve on a jury again.  A Florida judge has released the names and addresses of all the jurors in the Anthony murder case.  She's the one, you may remember, who was found "not guilty" of murdering her infant child.  Many folk didn't agree with the jurors and now their homes are being "visited" by reporters and such.  Those jurors made their decision on the presentation of the facts and not just "feelings."  They do not deserve having their lives disruptively invaded by reporters.  I'd find some way, any way, to get out of serving on a jury if I thought my participation would result in that kind of inconsideration.

WCSH-TV has made some minor changes in the background of it's new HD news programming.  I still find that background to be very dark and ugly.  I don't know what it's supposed to be, but it appears to be attempting to make it look like we're looking out a window at a city scene.  But, who am I?  I'm only someone who's watched that station's news for as long as I can remember.  Their HD set needs work.  By the way, the "Updates" during the Today Show were much better.  Had some light.  May be a wee bit too busy, but much better than the full news reports.


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