Thursday, March 26, 2009

Mercer County Electronics Recycling and Chemical Disposal

This Saturday, March 28th, Mercer County is holding its Household Chemical Waste Disposal and Electronics Recycling day!

8AM-2PM at the Dempster Fire School, Baker's Basin Rd, Lawrence Twp. Full details are here.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Double-dippers in Mercer County

Politicker NJ has a great story on pension abuse in Mercer County. Seems that Sheriff Kevin Larkin is receiving an $85,000 per year pension- for a job he's still doing, and getting paid $129K a year to do.

That's insane. That's unconscionable. Especially when Mercer County may have to layoff up to 125 people this year*.

And, apparently, the Hamilton Township administrator has been pulling a similar stunt- receiving a public pension and a salary for a public job.

Even if it is legal- and it sure sounds like it is- the wise move is to forgo the pension while you're still drawing from the public funds. Better still, make it illegal to do so.

*Including, possibly, yours truly or her coworkers. Full disclosure: I'm a county employee.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

In which Fox News discovers that, with effort, they can sink even lower!

The crew over at Fox Newz has essentially made up a story about Vice President Joe Biden, by splicing a six-month-old campaign video where he was ridiculing John McCain's position. They used it in a montage of "recent interviews this week" about the condition of the economy.

Their mommas must hang their heads in shame every day. I'm sure they tried to teach their kids good manners, such as not to make stuff up and to keep their mouths shut if they had nothing to say.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009


When we first got Cooper, the very first night, he was just a young kitten and was a little nervous about exploring. After a while of sitting on the couch with us, he got brave and wandered around a little bit. He made his way down the hallway and into a dark room. After a few minutes, I heard a very loud "Meow!" from down the hall. I went to check on him.

"What?" I said.

"Meow meow meow!" he said.

"Ok.' I said.

He promptly ran into the other bedroom. He was fine- he'd just wanted to tell me what he found. And from that day on, he always talked to me. He would "meow" and tell me what the problem was, what was going on, and that he wanted food. He always wanted more food.

After years of health problems, he finally turned the corner. We knew it was time when he didn't want to eat any more. We made the painful decision, and he went to the vet last night for the final time. He would have been sixteen in May.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Bad to the Bone

Jeri Smith-Ready's next book, Bad to the Bone, will be out on May 19th! There's a lovely picture of the cover over there on the sidebar.

Pre-order is available now at Mysterious Galaxy,, or Barnes and Noble.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Jon Stewart v. Jim Cramer

Jon Stewart wins. Big time.

This is the whole episode, and fully worth your time to watch it all.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

AC grabs the sun

The Atlantic City Convention and Visitor's Authority has installed the largest single-roof solar panel array in the U.S.:

The 13,321 photovoltaic panels will produce an average of 26 percent of the convention center's energy, according to consultants. The panels cover most of the roof's usable space, leaving room for walkways and other equipment.
"We estimate that we are going to save $4.4 million over the 20 years of the contract [with the solar provider]," said Jeff Vasser, president of the Atlantic City Convention & Visitors Authority.
In greener terms, authorities estimate the solar panels will avoid the release of 2,349 tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere -- equivalent to removing 390 passenger vehicles from the road or reducing oil consumption by 4,956 barrels per year.
"This is something we started thinking about when Gov. [Jon] Corzine came out with his energy master plan," Vasser said. "We thought, looking at our roof, that we would have a perfect opportunity to take the lead for New Jersey."

They saw an opportunity to lead and took it. That's the American way.

Thank you, Atlantic City convention center!

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Better than I could've said it: Hypocricy in the 12th edition

Jason Springer nails Declan O'Scanlon for his fair-weather property tax rebate stances.

Drug Law Revisions

For some reason, the Times of Trenton has not seen fit to post yesterday's column by George Amick* about the bills in Our Fair State's legislature about revising our drug laws. Here's what he said:

Imagine that New Jersey had a law that resulted in the imprisonment of thousands of nonviolent offenders - most of them minorities- at a high cost in taxpayer dollars and wasted lives, had no measurable effect on crime, robbed judges of the discretion that is that sole reason we have judges at all and was opposed by prosecutors throughout the state. Wouldn't the Legislature repeal it as quickly as it could assemble a quorum?
You'd think so. But our legislature has a selective sense of urgency.

(What a great line- a selective sense of urgency.)

New Jersey has had such a law for more than two decades and the law has produced all the toxic effects described above. A bill that would moderate some of these effects has been introduced in the Senate, where a majority is thought to favor the reform, but no one seems to be in a big hurry to advance it.

Mr. Amick goes on to describe the lost wages that those incarcerated could have produced as opposed to spending the money to incarcerate them, the unfair Drug Free School Zone laws that increase sentences whether there were children around or not and how dense urban areas fall entirely into these areas, and how the laws have shown to have no benefit whatsoever.

The bills our esteemed Mr. Amick mentions to eliminate the unreasonable drug laws is A 2762 and S 1866, sponsored by Assm. Bonnie Watson Coleman and Sen. Ray Lesniak, respectively. They should be furthered, debated and made into law. Ours is a failed drug policy that isn't helping keep our kids or our streets safe and is costing us a fortune in the process. It's time to revise it.

*Amick isn't listed as one of the Times of Trenton's columnists anymore, either. Since I'm looking at a paper from yesterday where his "Capital Talk" column is printed, I know he is- or was, as of yesterday? What's going on?