Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Headlines from West Virginia, the nation and around the globe.

Tolls discussed on other W.Va. highways
By The Associated Press
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CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- The West Virginia Turnpike isn't the only toll road in the state's future.

Department of Transportation spokesman Brent Walker says that next year, motorists using the West Virginia section of the Mon-Fayette Expressway can expect to pay a toll to travel the 4-mile route.

Walker says the Pennsylvania portion of the Morgantown-to-Pittsburgh highway is already a toll road.

Another stretch of highway being considered for tolls is U.S. 35 between Winfield and the Ohio River. Walker says money raised by tolls could be used to finance the last 14 miles of expanding the road to four lanes.

When I drive home from southern FL every few months, the absolute worse stretch of road is the last part of I-77 which is called the "WV Turnpike." It is a horribly planned and badly built piece of road that the state charges about $4 to run the length from Princeton, WV to Malden, WV. It was originally built as a two lane highway and at one time was the most dangerous stretch of road in the US. Today it is sorta up to interstate standards having had billions pumped into it through the efforts of WV Sen. Byrd and Rockefeller. I'm not sure what the money they're collecting is paying for. Probably to support the bogus, do nothing "WV Turnpike Commission" which is made up of political hacks appointed by the governor.

But now they tell us they want to charge us to travel other crappy little roads like Rt. 35 which is another very dangerous two lane highway. In any other place in America, Rt. 35 would long ago have been made a 4 lane.
This is what happens when we continue to elects numb skull politicians without a creative thought in their heads to state office. We now have one of, if not the dumbest governor in my lifetime running the ship of state. Welcome to the backwoods of WV.

Researchers: West Virginians' poor health tied to education
By Davin White
Staff writer

CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- West Virginia ranks among the three worst states for its low rate of very healthy people, according to a new study from a national health foundation.

Meanwhile, researchers with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation's Commission to Build a Healthier America say just a few years of extra education makes a big difference in the health of an American. The foundation is a nonprofit organization based in Princeton, N.J., with a goal of improving Americans' health.

Compiling data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, researchers found that more than 52 percent of survey respondents from West Virginia said they were not in very good health.

Likewise, West Virginia ranks 50th among states and the District of Columbia because there is such a large gap between the overall rate of adults who are not in "very good" health and the rate of West Virginia's college graduates not in very good health.

More than half of West Virginia's adults are not very healthy, while just 1 in 3 of its college graduates are not very healthy, researchers say.

More than 3 of 4 West Virginians who did not finish high school said they are not in very good health.

"Education policy is health policy. In the United States we tend to treat all these issues separately," said David Williams, staff director of the Commission to Build a Healthier America.

One of the least educated states is one of the least healthy. What a surprise.

I've been saying it since I started this blog and long before. . . "Education is the best solution to almost ALL of the problems we face in this country."

Maine becomes 5th state to allow same-sex marriage

By GLENN ADAMS, Associated Press Writer – 21 mins ago
AUGUSTA, Maine – Maine's governor signed a freshly passed bill Wednesday approving gay marriage, making it the fifth state to approve the practice and moving New England closer to allowing it throughout the region.
New Hampshire legislators were also poised to send a gay marriage bill to their governor, who hasn't indicated whether he'll sign it. If he does, Rhode Island would be the region's sole holdout.
The Maine Senate voted 21-13, with one absent, for a bill that authorizes marriage between any two people rather than between one man and one woman, as state law currently allows. The House had passed the bill Tuesday.

Welcome to the 21st Century as once again, freedom progresses in America. . . most of America. In WV this year, they tried to pass a "marriage act" that defined marriage as only between and man and woman.

Swine Flu Likely to Return to U.S. Next Winter

WEDNESDAY, May 6 (HealthDay News) -- Many experts are predicting that the current outbreak of swine flu, much like the regular seasonal flu, will subside during the summer months and reappear in the fall. . .

So far, some of the most affected nations have been in North America and Europe, but the flu is spread more easily in the winter, and it's already fall in the Southern hemisphere. Experts fear public health systems could be overwhelmed if swine flu and regular flu collide in major urban populations, according to the Associated Press.

And it will kill us all THEN! Yaaaawn, they just can't let it go. Too much money to be made creating and stocking up on vaccines and treatment meds.

Keep remembering, 30,000-50,000 people die from influenza and related complications every year in the USA alone. 250,000-500,000 die world wide. So far, a handful have died from "swine flu" world wide and only one single solitary death in the USA. Yea, let's put this crisis on hold till fall, ok?

Ethanol test for Obama on climate change, science

By H. JOSEF HEBERT, Associated Press Writer – Sun May 3, 10:11 am ET
WASHINGTON – President Barack Obama's commitment to take on climate change and put science over politics is about to be tested as his administration faces a politically sensitive question about the widespread use of ethanol: Does it help or hurt the fight against global warming?
The Environmental Protection Agency is close to proposing ethanol standards. But two years ago, when Congress ordered a huge increase in ethanol use, lawmakers also told the agency to show that ethanol would produce less pollution linked to global warming than would gasoline.
So how will the EPA define greenhouse gas emissions from ethanol production and use? Given the political clout of farm interests, will the science conflict with the politics?

This is pure corporate bullshit. The only people in favor of increased ethanol use are the corporate corn producers and ethanol manufacturers. Burning ethanol is not the answer to greenhouse gas reduction. Reducing the amount of fuels we burn is the only answer. We HAVE to take an aggressive approach to cutting back the use of oil based products and developing non-combustion alternative energy sources.

Joe The Plumber Slurs Gay People: I Would Never Let "Queers" Near My Children

The Huffington Post

Joe the Plumber, aka Samuel Wurzelbacher, sat down for an lengthy interview with Christianity Today to discuss his views on the future of the Republican party. Wurzelbacher took the opportunity to speak out against gay marriage, which he says is wrong. The unlikely conservative spokesman went so far as to say he doesn't allow openly gay people "anywhere near" his children.

There ya have it folks, from the guy the republicans are using as an icon of their constituency.
Ya gotta admit, the entertainment value is significant since the right wing extremist whack jobs have made themselves irrelevant for anything else.

`Star Trek': Are the hardcore fans onto something?

By TED ANTHONY, AP National Writer – Wed May 6, 6:37 am ET
It took just a few seconds of footage — a single trailer, dropped from the heavens with great fanfare — for the hue and cry to rise on, the top fan site for J.J. Abrams' new "Star Trek" movie. By the hundreds they weighed in, a contentious cacophony that would have jammed even Lt. Uhura's comms system.
Spock's voice is weak. The Enterprise bridge looks like it was manufactured by Apple in Cupertino. The ship wasn't built in Iowa; it was built in San Francisco. The transporter effect is too different. Anton Yelchin looks nothing like the original Chekov. John Cho is way too old to be Sulu. Jim Kirk was never this rebellious. Sounds like Star Wars. Where's Shatner? It's a reboot. No, it isn't. Yes it is. How dare you. How dare YOU?

Whoa, wait a minute. . .
I find entertainment news frivolous and unimportant. . . most of the time.
Look, The original Star Trek is like a great piece of literature. Yea, it's corny and overacted, but it was part of a major shift in American thinking along with the social and scientific revolution of the time.
Now, 40+ yrs later they want to redo the original? No. Fucking no. You can't do that bozos. You can take up where the last one left off or you can go back in time before the original, but you can't recreate the original. It would be like rewriting Beowulf. Use the theme, change the names, do it in another place and time, but you can not rip Kirk, Sulu, Scotty, Bones, Spock, etc.
Stay away from this one. It can only suck.


OhComeOn. said...

one of your stories was written by a good friend of mine from college - davin white. weird.

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