Sheriff Rick Scott Honored

Some milestones are bigger than others. Forty years is a big one any way you slice it. Especially when it’s for serving in one place, as is the case wth Sheriff Rick Scott. The Sheriff  was recognized via resolution at today’s BOCC meeting for serving 40 years with the county.

In the morning meeting, Raines noted that many people she’s talked to “have indicated that 40 years with law enforcement is a big deal. Forty years with the same agency is even bigger.”

This afternoon, Commissioner and Commission Chair Wes Cormier read the resolution, which expressed “appreciation and recognition” for Scott’s years of service and dedication to the county and the office.

Raines said she’s honored to be sitting on the Board as Scott reaches this milestone. She joked that Scott has served longer than Cormier has been alive.

Commissioner Randy Ross told Scott, “It’s been my honor to know you for the past ten years or so.” He said Scott is “well respected throughout the county and the state.”

Scott thanked the Board for the recognition. “I’m proud of the fact that I’ve been in law enforcement for 40 years, but even prouder that the whole time has been in Grays Harbor. It’s been an honor and a privilege to this,” he commented. Scott clarifed that he’s “not retiring, just hitting the 40 year mark.”

Speaking law enforcement – sort of – Bob Ferguson, Attorney General for the People’s Republic of Washington, is wearing a face omlette over today’s U.S. Supreme Court ruling on the Trump travel ban. Or should be. W

Want some cheese with that whine, Bobby?

Oh, yeah. Since we’re all abiout not discriminating these days – oh, the horror – SCOTUS finally got one right today:  Supreme Court Trinity Lutheran Decision – Say ‘No’ to Discrimination Against Religious Groups.

It’s about time.
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County Commissioners to State: Don’t Push Unfunded Mandates Down On Us

Grays Harbor County Commissioners are pretty much telling the state legislature where to get off when it comes to the latest harebrained idea out of Olympia: unfunded mandates related to ballot drop boxes.

In April the House passed Senate Bill 5472. The bill requires one ballot drop box per 15,000 resdidents in a county, with between 250 and 275 additional drop boxes expected statewide. According to the Spokesman Review, the measure “requires at least one ballot drop box for every 15,000 registered voters in a county and a minimum of one box in each city, town and census-designated place in a county with a post office.”

The problem, of course, is that it forces cash-strapped counties like Grays Harbor to fork out a significant chunk of change for the drop boxes with no $ help from the state. None of the Grays Harbor county commissioners are exactly turning cartwheels over another unfunded state mandate.

I’m really frustrated with this” said Commissioner Vickie Raines at this morning’s commission meeting. Noting that Grays Harbor isn’t exactly Fort Knox, Raines exprssed frustration with the expected price tag attached to the mandate. “You’re looking at around $7,500 to $10,000 per ballot box. There are 16 to 20 (drop boxes) on the (county) list” she said.

Do the math. (That’s okay. I’ll wait.)

Costs to the county don’t end with drop box placement. The new requirement will also cost the county – taxpayers – in staff time and wages. Raines continued, “Were going to have to have someone at each ballot box at eight p.m. on voting night” to ensure integrity of the drop boxes. 

Can you say ‘asinine’? Oh, wait. One of the commishes already did.

In fact, all three commishes expressed frustration with the unfunded mandate. Opined Commissioner Randy Ross, “There’s got to be a way through this, a way to appeal the decision.”

“I’m sure the state will pay for it,” joked Commissioner Wes Cormier.

Raines said she talked to State Rep. Brian Blake and State Senators Dean Takko and Kevin Van De Wege about the matter. She could not recall a conversation with (State Rep.) Jim Walsh. Raines said she’s fine with adding the drop boxes “if the state pays for it. But don’t push it (the costs) down on us.”

Supporters say the new law gives voters a way to cast ballots without paying for postage and increases access in rura areas. Opponents say the well-intended measure forces counties to spend thousands of dollars to serve small numbers of voters in remote communities.

What say you?

Why I’m No Longer a “Constitutional Conservative”

If you’ve followed this blog for any length of time – say, 20 minutes or so – you may be aware that I’ve identified as a “constitutional conservative” since Ronaldus Maximus.

Not anymore.

The final epiphany occurred between the pages of Dinesh D’Souza’s Stealing America: What Criminal Gangs Taught Me About Obama, Hillary, and the Democratic Party  – 2015. (If you haven’t read that yet, now would be good.)

How did this epiphany take place? Well, remember “You didn’t build that?” How ‘bout “redistributing the wealth”? “Social justice”? “Paying their fair share” and similar lib/progressive/Democrat mantras? Where did they come from? How? Why? To what end?

Continue reading “Why I’m No Longer a “Constitutional Conservative””

Why Alexandria Shooting Shouldn’t Surprise Us

Our thoughts and prayers go out to Rep. Steve Scalise, his family, and those injured in yesterday’s shooting in Alexandria, Virginia.

But let’s get one thing straight. This was not a “senseless” shooting. When James Hodgkinson pulled the trigger during an early morning Wednesday baseball practice, his target selection was deliberate and calculated. According to eye witness reports, Hodgkinson wasn’t targeting “congressmen.” He was targeting Republican congressmen.

Hodgkinson was a Trump/Republican hater and a member of a Facebook group, Terminate the Republican Party. He apparently embraced the venomous vitriol Leftistas like Elizabeth Fauxahontas Warren, Maxine Waters, Rachel Maddow, Rose O’Donnell & a cast of thousands have been spewing toward Republicans in general and Trump in particular. And Hodgkinson apparently acted on that hate, whipped up to fever pitch by all of the above. And many more.

As horrifying as this attack was, it shouldn’t surprise us. It’s the natural outgrowth of a particular ideology. The maelstrom of hate and violence poured out by the Left on anyone who disagrees with them has reached stratospheric levels since January. (Kathy Griffin? New York City plays depicting the assassination of a Trump-like character? Washed-up recording artists saying they want to “blow up” the White House? Berkeley? Evergreen State College? I could go on, but you get the idea.)

In SAF: Scalise Shooting Is Result Of Democratic Hate Speech, Alan Gottlieb of the Second Amendment Foundation put it this way. Via the Business Journal:

“This hate speech that has been going on since Donald Trump was elected,” said SAF founder and Executive Vice President Alan M. Gottlieb. “It gets their voter base agitated and this is what happens as a result. Is this just a coincidence this happened on the president’s birthday?” …

“When liberal leftists support the assassination of President Trump on stage what do you expect to happen,” Gottlieb stated. “Hate speech and actions incite this kind of violence. It is time for Democrats like Reps. Maxine Waters and Nancy Pelosi, Sen. Chuck Schumer, Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton and many of the talking heads at CNN and MSNBC to shut up.”

 

Robert Romano of Americans for Limited Government  likewise observes:

Because of months of ceaseless propaganda, blaming Hillary Clinton’s election loss on supposed Russian hacking and blaming the Trump campaign, now rabid believers in this nonsense are taking matters into their own hands.

The Russia mass hysteria has now inspired real political violence, not just the imagined bit of political violence on the part of comedian Kathy Griffin. It’s a miracle the only person who was killed in this domestic terrorist attack was the shooter himself.

Indeed, while decrying “hate” in everyone else, Leftistas have made hatred a full-time career. It’s what energizes their base. And while conservatives and libertarians battle over ideas and issues, Leftista thugs and sycophants (aka: theftistas – more on that later) focus on battling you. Personally. Because they see you as evil. An impediment to the implementation of their ex cathedra agenda.

Continues Romano:

This is the predictable result of mass propaganda, but it also points to a more widespread problem, with the advent of violent groups like Antifoam (“Anti-fascists”) and Black Lives Matter. These leftist organizations are seizing upon a fertile environment for political extremism that has been fomented.

This extremism has become mainstream. And now it threatens to engulf this country.

Don’t think so? A brief review of select drops from the ‘Holy Grail’ of Leftism:

  • Trying to criminalize and/or terrorize honest differences of opinion. Brandish “racist, sexist, bigot, homophobe” and their ilk like rhetorical cudgels because they can’t come up with any decent, logical arguments or facts to support you flawed positions and failed policies.
  • Demanding free speech and freedom of expression for yourself but refuse to acknowledge same for your opponents. They decry “hate” in others while simultaneously spewing some of the most vile, vicious vocabulary imaginable at their ideological foes.
  • Launching into Pecksniffian sermonizing about “tolerance” and “love” but cudgel anyone into submission or silence who dares challenge or disagree with their views.
  • Heaping abuse and invective on anyone who doesn’t see things their way, then launch sanctimonious, self-serving lectures about “civility” in public discourse.

While Leftistas typically scoff at, deride, attack, or otherwise dismiss religion – specifically Christianity – Leftistas are not a-religious. Far from it. Their dual deities are the state and the collective. The typical Leftista catechism includes “social justice,” “wealth redistribution,” and “paying their fair share” (whatever that means). Disagree, and you’re not just someone on the other side of the political fence. You are attacking their sacred Articles of Faith. Therefore, you are eeeevil. A racist. A bigot. A (fill in the blank) phobe du juor.

So they start scouting up firewood, stakes, and the nearest match.

Moreover, Leftistas can’t wrap their heads around a loss at the ballot box. So when their failed politics and policies are rejected, they fall back on the only thing they have left: rage. Tragically – but not surprisingly – that rage spilled out onto a Virginia baseball field yesterday.

Sitting in for Mark Levin on the radio yesterday, former Secret Service agent, NYC police officer and congressional candidate Dan Bongino explained this with great eloquence. Pressing the point on Fox and Friends this morning, Bongino said “the other side” doesn’t care about ideas. The other side, he said, is part of a “sick political theory” that has infected academia, Hollywood, and “limousine liberals.” The other side, says Bongino, thinks they’re “fighting bad people…. They don’t care about your ideas. … They think you are a bad person”:

“This is insane,” opines Bongino. He also lambasts the galactic hypocrisy of the Nancy Pelosis and Chuck Schumers of the world saying, “You had an opportunity years ago to correct this (the insane political left)… you reap what you sow…. They (Democrat leadership) should’ve shut down this hateful rhetoric” years ago.

But they didn’t. Haven’t. Won’t. Many are part of it. And now some claim, straight-faced, that they’re “shocked” by the attack in Alexandria? (Yes, nut jobs exist on the right. But I’m pretty sure conservatives haven’t been rioting in the streets, demanding white college professors leave campuses, attacking speakers they dislike or disagree with, or chanting “Pigs in a blanket, fry ’em like bacon” lately. Also see: The Left Embraces Political Violence.)

I’d elaborate further. But I choose to limit my vocabulary to the bounds or proprietary. So I’ll let author and columnist Mark Steyn wrap up on the “political violence culture” and the “pansy Left”:

As ever, the core issue isn’t a “hardware issue,” much as Leftista Theftistas would have us believe. It’s a heart issue. And while conservatives pretty much police themselves, as noted by Bongino in the above clip, Leftistas have no such governor. Bereft of constitutional, moral, or most legal moorings, all rabid Leftistas have at the end of the day is rage. Like what we saw yesterday in Virginia.

Take heart. There’s a cure. It’s simple. It’s ground zero. You can read more about it here.

 

Commissioners Approve Marijuana Proposal 

A proposed moratorium on new marijuana production and processing permits passed unanimously at this afternoon’s regular business meeting  of the Board of County Commissioners. (See prior post for background.)

The proposed moratorium was brought forward by Commissioner Wes Cormier this morning. Commissioner Vickie Raines moved to approve the ordinance this afternoon. Commissioner Randy Ross seconded. It passed 3 to 0 and will now go through the public hearing process.

Stay tuned.

Photo: This is how the large meeting room looks during most BOCC business meetings.

Commishes Talk ‘Buds’ and Budget, Auditor’s $ a Concern

Sick of that ‘burning rope’ odor? Help is on the way via a proposed ‘marijuana moratorium.’

Brought forward by Commissioner Wes Cormier, the proposal is for  a six month moratorium on new applications for the production and processing of marijuana. Cormier said he’s “getting a lot of complaints about odor.” Commissioners Randy Ross and Vickie Raines indicated they’ve been receiving similar complaints.

The draft ordinance relates to new permits for marijuana processing and production, not retail. It also provides for a public hearing on the subject. Look for more discussion at an upcoming workshop. A copy of the draft ordinance appears below.

County revenues and expenditures were also on the table this morning. Budget Director presented a budget update as of May 31, 2017. The County Auditor’s numbers continue to be a source of concern. The basic ‘benchmark’ at this point is for county departments to have about 58% of their budget left through the end of the fiscal year. The Auditor’s office is about six points below the benchmark, with just over 52% of its budget left for the year.

Commissioner Vickie Raines asked why the Auditor’s office is so far below the benchmark. That office incurred significant spending overages related to the 2016 elections. Those costs splashed over into the 2017 budget. “He’s (County Auditor Vern Spatz) not going to meet budget as is going down this path,” said Raines. Citing this year’s upcoming elections, she said, “My anticipation is it’s (auditor spending/budget issues) going to get worse.”

Raines asked for a letter to be sent to Spatz asking how he’s going to resolve those issues. “I don’t want to wait till October, November, or December and have this big elephant in the room,” said Raines. 

Additional county budget info. appears below. There’s more where that came from. Just holler.

Meanwhile, tomorrow’s ‘legislative summit’ with state legislators from the 19th and 24th LDs has been taken off-calendar. This change is due to the unavailability of Sens. Takko and Van de Wege. Watch for a reschedule, possibly this Friday. Tomorrow’s 1:00 p.m commissioners’ workshop is still on, with different topics.

A motion to cancel the July 3 BOCC meetings passed unanimously.

TTFN!

Top photo: (L to R) Commissioners Randy Ross, Wes Cormier and Vickie Raines discuss county budget matters with Budget Director Brenda Sherman.

Thanks, Dems! Some Harborites May Soon Be Without Healthcare

Remember “If you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor”? How ‘bout, “If you like your plan, you can keep your plan?”

Anyone who’s been paying attention to the political landscape for any length of time – say, 20 minutes or so – knows what a crock those two Obamanian lines turned out to be (not that anyone’s counting or anything).

But wait. It’s about to get better. Especially in Grays Harbor.

According to a June 8 story in CNN Money, More Insurers Drop Obamacare, Even in State With a Healthy Exchange, Grays Harbor will have the dubious distinction of being one of two Washington counties to be without any Obamacare insurers next year. As in, Zip. Zero. Nada.  Via CNN Money:

Two (Washington) counties won’t have any insurers participating in the individual market — either on the state’s Obamacare exchange or off of it — next year unless another company steps in, the Washington insurance department said Wednesday.

This could be trouble for the more than 3,300 people in those counties, Klickitat and Grays Harbor, who buy their own coverage. This includes the more than 2,100 residents who signed up for policies through the exchange.

Washington would become the third state to have locales without any Obamacare insurers. Enrollees in the Kansas City, Missouri, area and in parts of Ohio also won’t have any options on their exchanges next year unless other carriers join.(Emphasis added.)

Insurers who are pulling out cite the expenses of “setting up doctor and hospital networks or the ongoing uncertainty surrounding Obamacare’s future.”  Sure as night follows day, the other side of the aisle is trying to pin blame on President Trump and Republicans.

Not so fast.

Remember who put the ACA in place. Hint: It wasn’t Republicans.  Nor did Republicans force the individual mandate, coercing free citizens to engage in commerce and purchase a product whether you wanted/needed it or not. (Doesn’t that qualify as “slavery”? Askin’ for a friend.)  Continues CNN Money:

Even though the bill to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act is working its way through the Senate, Obamacare still remains the law of the land. Insurers are now telling state regulators whether they’ll participate for 2018 and the rates they want to charge consumers.

How Obamacare is faring nationwide really depends on the state — and even the county. Insurers are pulling out of some areas, leaving a growing number of places with only one carrier on the exchange. Humana (HUM), Aetna (AET) and several Blue Cross and Blue Shield plans, which specialize in the individual market, have announced their departures.

While we’re taking a trudge down memory lane, remember that Obamacare passed without a single Republican vote. You may also want to remember that the next time you fill out your ballot. Or need to see a doctor.

Indeed, the handwriting on the wall regarding Obamacare was obvious to anyone with two functional brain cells from Day 1.  Democrats deployed a variety of  smoke and mirrors to sell Obama’s magical health elixir.

And now you know “what’s in it.”

Obamacare was never designed to improve access to anything. (Remember Jonathan Gruber?) In fact, Obamacare is doing exactly what it was intended to do – fail – as a precursor to single payer. (See Obamacare: A Trojan Horse for Single Payer.) So Americans can have healthcare that’s just as lousy as Canadians and Brits.

If you’re upset about losing your health insurance, remember which party dumped that monstrosity on you in the first place. (Don’t even get me started on the difference between “health coverage” and “health care.” Because that’s night and day. As in, Great! You’ve got insurance through the exchange. Good luck getting anyone who’ll accept it.)

Speaking of “luck,” if you’re over 50 and fall into the demographic outlined above, good luck getting decent healthcare. Can you say “rationing”? Unfortunately, some Americans have become so addicted to government-provided “healthcare” since 2010, they can’t imagine a world without it.

Try.

In the meantime, Harborites, don’t get sick, injured, or otherwise in need of medical care next year, courtesy of the Party Debt, Dependency, and Duplicity.

You might also want to remember that per the next election.