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2014

Wow.  I only did one post in 2013.  I paid $100 to host the site for a year and put up only one post.  You may remember it.  It featured a picture of a young queen Elizabeth the Second with a promise of “more to come…”  Hahahaha.  Lies!  Not in 2013 anyway.  That year sucked.  I lost my father in July and I got divorced in October.  Shitty all around.  Anyway, I don’t know all that much about Burlington politics anymore.  I do know about the welfare system in Vermont but I’m not so sure it would be wise for me to blog about that.  Maybe.  I think technically I have the right, but if I were to ever do that, I’d have to disclose fully that I work for the system and I want it to succeed and improve, so I’m biased.

Well you do a job, or as Hinda Miller once said you “fake it ’till you make it.” So what’s going on in Burlington politics?  Waterfront development.  School tax increase.  Anything else?  I barely care.  I care a little bit, but barely.  I’m just putting up a post to get some tiny piece of my life back after a tumultuous year.  And to tie 2013.  Will I put up a second post in 2014?  I’m thinking probably, but I have to refer you to my disclaimer.

January 17, 2014   1 Comment

Minecraft Conversation

HB: Tell me about the game Minecraft.

TB: Minecraft is a game that you can build anything you want if you have the items.

HB: What kind of items?

TB: Wooden planks, cobblestone, iron, diamonds and gold.

EB: And you can make a gun.

TB: That’s like mods.

HB: What’s a mod?

TB: It’s a download that you can do and you can make a gun mod…

HB: What does a mod do?

TB: It changes your minecraft into something cooler.

HB: Like what? Does it change the way it looks?

TB: That’s a texture pack that changes the way it looks.

EB: We have cottery craft texture pack.

TB: And there are enemies of the night.

HB: Like what kind of enemies?

TB: There’s creepers, skeletons, zombies, spiders and undermen…. And there are “Nuther” ememies.

HB: What kind of “Nuther” ememies?

TB: Like zombie pigmen, ghasts, blazes and magma cubes.

HB: What’s the “Nuther?”

LL: You tell him TB I forget.

TB: The Nuther is a place like Hell with burning fires and lava.

HB: Are there devils?

TB: No… maybe the pigmen are. Now my friend Sean is going to tell you about the “Aether.”

SD: The Aether is a place where there’s an unbeatable boss, where not one person has beaten it. The only way is to use a diamond sword and deflect the ice circles and make sure they hit the fireboss.”

TB: (to SD) If you know so much about the fire boss, why don’t you just beat him?

SD: It’s a mod, Tiko, it’s a mod. And the mod costs money. That’s the bad part.

TB: When I’m ten I’m going to buy the Aether mod.

HB: Don’t you think that by the time you’re ten, two years from now, you’ll want something else instead?

TB: Yes I will, but I’ll still play Minecraft and buy the Aether mod.

SD: I want to play Poptropica now.

HB: No! This story is about Minecraft, not Poptropica!

SD: So what?!!

EB: Hello. Yes.

TB: Why’d you say ‘hello, yes?’

EB: Because it’s funny!

TB: No it’s not.

HB: Let’s get back to Minecraft. You have Minecraft for xbox now. Is it different than the computer version?

TB: Yes. You can get a tutorial and there are updates like the computer version. I have one of them and My tutorial deleted for no reason.

EB: Blah blah blah blah, blah blah blah blah.

TB: (continuing) and there’s a old tutorial that you can get if you have the update that I have.

HB:Tell me about building things like the giant Sponge Bob or your house.

TB: Oh. At LL’s house I helped him make a Sponge Bob.

HB: Right. And it was as tall as a skyscraper and you could go inside of him.

TB: EB, say “blah blah blah again.”

December 6, 2012   1 Comment

Burlington Words or Phrases

I’m justing going to make a list. Feel free to add suggestions.

Lois the Hot Dog Lady, Pine Street, Clavelle, Church Street, Bessery’s, Beltline, Bernie, Ben and Jerry’s, Groovy U-V, DeGoesbriand, John Dewey, Lake Champlain, Ethan Allen, Mary Fletcher, Centennial Field, Waterfront Park, Lakewood Raft, The Flynn, The North End, The Old North End, Red Rocks, Oakledge, Leddy Beach, Ben’s Sandwiches, Bonfires on the Beach, the Pinnacle, Phish, Magic Hat,

September 18, 2012   4 Comments

Council Sends 9M Bond to Voters

We have to vote “yes.”  If we don’t borrow this now at current rates, then the city’s credit rating will slide off a cliff.  Nobody likes taxes, but life is expensive.  Pay a little now, or pay a lot later.  There are no other alternatives.

Bear in mind our aquaducts need replacing.  In August a sewer structure from 1879 collapsed under Main Street.  Burlington is not a new city, by North American standards.

Please read my post on a city’s priorities from May, 2011.

September 12, 2012   No Comments

Add New Post

Wow.  Dead air.  Dead…air.  So much radio silence.  Just fuzzy static on waves.  No signal.  No beep beep.  Nothing to distract from your own existential humming noise.  Louder and louder with no stories about local politics or nuthin’ to help with that at all.  Not here anyway.  Not lately.  But Seven Days is trying something new along those lines with a purely politcal blog called “off messsage.”

September 3, 2012   No Comments

More from George Cross on F-35

Thanks for forwading the information George.

Personally and as a school board rep, I think it would probably be better to have the F35 at BTV than not, for economic and security reasons- but then again I haven’t heard them. If they are ridiculously much louder than the F16 then my mind could be changed. I like George’s idea of a trial run so people can hear it before deciding.

Brochure and Public Forum Message sponsered by the “Stop the F-35 Coalition” below the row of stars to follow…

*****

Click here for informational PDF brochure about the F35

Public Forum: ” F-35s in Burlington?”

Wednesday, August 8 6:00 PM Burlington City Hall Auditorium

Decreased property values?
Destruction of affordable housing?
New level of air & noise pollution?
Militarization of the region?

Speakers: Jared Carter Esq., Vermont Community Law Center, Teacher * Maggie Frye, Esq. Lawline of Vermont * Suzi Wizowaty, State Representative * Nora Kell, Realtor * Michael Mahoney, Real Estate Appraiser

Moderator:  Sandy Baird Esq., Teacher, Lawyer, Activist

Sponsored by the Institute for Civic Engagement, Burlington College
For information call Sandy Baird at 862-9616

Message sponsored by the
Stop the F-35 Coalition info@stopthef35.com www.stopthef35.com

August 5, 2012   No Comments

Cross Plan Re: F-35

The following was written by guest blogger: George C. Cross of Winooski…

*****

SIMPLE SOLUTION – THE CROSS PLAN

Here are three easy steps the Air Force, the Vermont Air National Guard, the Vermont Congressional delegation, the Governor of Vermont and the Mayor of Burlington can collectively take in relation to the F-35. These steps will assure the good people who live in the flight path of the Burlington International Airport that bringing the F-35 to Vermont is the right thing to do.

First, they can all collaborate to release in full the rating scale and scoring for the Air Force’s environmental impact study related to the “bedding down” of the F-35 in Burlington and ensures the authors will be available to respond to local citizens’ questions.

Second, they can agree that the Air Force must bring the plane to Burlington for at least a two week period and fly it daily, prior to any final decision, so that all can judge for themselves whether it is a good fit with Vermont.

Third, in the case the decision is made to deploy the planes in Vermont, they can agree that the Air Force or some agency of the federal government will be required:
a. To hold property owners in and near the flight paths harmless in terms of any depreciation in the value of their properties caused by the intrusion of the F-35 in these “green mountains.”
b. To hold Vermont communities and the State of Vermont Education Fund harmless in terms of any loss of tax revenue caused by depreciated property values created by the F-35.

If there are no significant issues related to assigning the F-35s to the Vermont Air National Guard, as some of the above have stated, then meeting these three conditions should be a piece-of-cake. In the absence of a collaborative agreement on the above, all the parties have failed to take reasonable action to ensure Vermonters that deploying the F-35 in Vermont is a wise decision. It is not up to the local citizens to prove that this plane should not be here. It is required that the military/industrial complex and the politicians prove that it is compatible with our state; or, at least agree that Vermonters and Vermont will be held harmless in case that turns out not to be true.

George C. Cross
Winooski, VT

July 21, 2012   1 Comment

New Hero

I haven’t been blogging much.  I’ve been watching every single episode of seasons one and two of Louie on Netflix.  I really love Louis CK.

July 17, 2012   1 Comment

Free Press Bluffing

I wrote a post the other day about being denied access to The Burlington Free Press Online because I haven’t purchased a $144 per year subscription.  In the post I made a counter-offer of $20 for a year subscription.  I am now rescinding the counter-offer.

Since I wrote that other post I have not purchased a subscription, but I have been enjoying Free Press content anyway.  After I had supposedly used up my 10 free articles- I tried their site with a different browser and it worked for a few more.  I have continued to read articles on my Blackberry free without warnings or interruptions… and guess what?  If you arrive at a Free Press article from a link on Twitter- you will get it free with a little pop-off bluff- a phony admonition that “this is your last free article.”  I’ve read my “last” free article at least a dozen times already this way.

They are bluffing.  Charging any amount for their online content will cause the Free Press’s readership to evaporate.  Perhaps they have calculated that they can’t afford not to charge for the content.  They will also soon conclude (and perhaps they already have) that they cannot afford to exclude non-paying readers from it.

Adapt or die Free Press.  That means all advertising and no subscription revenue.  Far fewer staff and far better content.  Good luck.

June 20, 2012   5 Comments

Burlington Friends Statement on F-35

In Response To
Mayor Weinberger

Author Anne Liske
Comment Submitted on 2012/06/11 at 7:42 pm

To: Mr. Nicholas Germanos, HQ ACC/A7PS, 129 Andrews St., Suite 332, Langley AFB, VA 23665-2769.

A statement by Burlington, Vermont Friends Meeting concerning the F-35 aircraft proposed to be stationed at the Burlington International Airport.

As members of the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers) we join with other Vermonters in opposing the stationing of a fleet of F-35s at Burlington International Airport (BIA).

As Quakers, we aspire to be good stewards of the world’s resources. The proposed roll out of 2443 of these gigantic military machines is a flagrant waste of resources. Rare metals such as zirconium and titanium are essential in its construction, yet scientists estimate that peak production of these metals is already past. The predictable metal scarcity that is looming will affect our entire industrial civilization. We support a path toward managed austerity of the world’s resources. This path does not include the shockingly wasteful F-35.

As Quakers, we are historically opposed to war. This multirole fighter is being developed to perform ground attack, reconnaissance, and air defense missions with stealth capability. The construction of these killing machines is part of an aggressive military posture that will undermine the peaceful reconciliation of conflict. They are not built to defend Vermonters.

As Quakers, we value frugality: Yet the US government is projecting to spend an estimated $397 billion for development and procurement of these aircraft, of which 18 or 24 are proposed to be stationed at BIA. The lifecycle (50 year) cost for one plane is estimated to be $618 million. Faced with these outrageous figures, we can’t help but recall the statement by former president Dwight D. Eisenhower: “Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies, in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed….” Given our country’s current economic situation, we consider the construction of these weapons to be morally and economically destructive to our wellbeing.

In addition, we mourn the human skills, the brilliant minds of engineers, mechanics, and software designers wasted on building this weapon of destruction, when those engineers and mechanics and designers are urgently needed to develop alternative energy sources, find a solution to desertification, desalinate water, reverse global warming and help resolve the multitude of problems our fragile and precious planet is facing.

As Quakers, we sit in silence in our meetings for worship. Our Burlington meeting is near the flight path for airplanes landing and taking off at Burlington International Airport. We dread the possible future roar of the F-35 into our worship and community space.

In conclusion, we join with many Vermonters to protest this militarization of our community. We consider it an assault on our values as a state.
Anne Liske, Clerk, Burlington Friends Meeting
173 North Prospect St., Burlington VT 05401
802-497-0154
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June 11, 2012   No Comments