August 2007 Archive

Strickland’s energy plan

The Buckeye Institute Blog has a poor review for Gov. Strickland’s energy plan. Yes, it’s shocking, I know. Here’s their bottom line:

His plan gives the PUCO bureaucrats and their politican overseers a new lease on life in managing electric utility service in Ohio. The governor’s proposal provides them the chance to once again set prices, allocate resources, ration service and mandate redistributions between classes in tune with political power instead of contribution to economic prosperity.

There will be plenty of security and predictability for ratepayers in the increased regulation of electric utilities. And dodging the bullet of unregulated monopolies created as a legacy of regulation is important as well.

But a reading of economics and recent history reveals that the comfort of a beefed-up regulatory regime will come at the cost of forgoing the greater prosperity inherent in free market economies.

The theme for Democrats seems to be that the more important something is, and this applies to energy, education, agriculture, and others, the less you want the influence of free markets. This to avoid the problems that accompany free markets, but they too often end up getting rid of the benefits as well.

UPDATE: Dave Harding at Progress Ohio has a good overview of the plan.

Under Strickland’s plan, by 2025, a minimum of 25 percent of the electricity sold in Ohio must be generated from advanced energy technology. No less than half of that energy will come from renewable sources, including biomass, wind, solar, biogas, geothermal, and hydro power. However, the Governor has stated he will include “clean coal” and nuclear projects in the proposed energy portfolio.

I guess that means that 12.5% must be “renewable”. I had a post up earlier about a proposed 20% plan. But biomass is no environmental bargain, and that may well become widely known before 2025, and I don’t see any new hydro facilities being built- too environmentally controversial.

Idaho Sen. Craig likely to resign

CNN is reporting that Idaho Sen. Larry Craig will likely resign soon. More on that at Nixguy and from Ryan at Buckeye State Blog, who’s got a well-considered post:

I find it quite sad that this man, because of societal pressure feels unable to come out of the closet and admit to himself that he is gay. It is a sad state of affairs when people feel this boxed in because of what they do or who they are that they have to resort to the kinds of activity that Senator Craig engaged in.

I think that’s the only reasonable take on the situation. Think Brokeback Mountain. And it’s very different from the Jeridian glee on the matter.

In somewhat related news, the Columbus Police and park people are working on cutting down lewd behavior in the city’s parks:

The Columbus police vice squad said that secluded areas attract the wrong sort of crowd, like the woods that line the parking lot of Rhodes Park.

Officers are working closely with the city to get thick brush cleared in problem areas.

In addition, the city’s recreation and parks department has begun putting new facilities in the parks that promote positive activities and increase traffic.

I’m glad they’re promoting positive activities, whatever they are. 100 people have been arrested so far this year.

The Carnival of Ohio Politics #80 is up and running.

If Purtee goes, so should Al-Akhras

Mayor Mike Coleman adviser Ahmad Al-Akhras has invited Islamist speaker (and alleged 1993 WTC bombing unindicted co-conspirator) Siraj Wahhaj to speak at the “Annual Fundraising Dinner” for the Islamic Foundation of Central Ohio in Columbus on September 9th.

Wahhaj has called for the imposition of Sharia law in the United States. Sharia’s treatment of women, gays, and religious inferiors makes CPD Officer Susan Purtee’s views seem tame in comparison.

Al-Akhras sits on the Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission (MORPC) and Columbus’s Streetcar Working Group (pdf), and is the National Vice Chairman of the front group CAIR.

Someone make those rehab reservations

From It’s a Paul World:

It is only a matter of time before Idaho republican senator Larry Craig resigns. I see a tearful entering rehab speech in his future also. That’s usually how these things go.

SNL had a Peter O’Toole skit that addressed that kind of thing. Of course we don’t know yet if Craig is going to take that route.

Via columbusING, the Surly Girl Saloon has been named one of the best bars in America by Esquire Magazine.

Patrick Poole has a pretty good overview of the Megan Pappada / Todd Hoffman brouhaha in the Ohiosphere in FrontPage Magazine. Certain blogs are mentioned.

Strickland speech

Gov. Ted Strickland is doing his “energy, jobs and progress” announcement right now (12:30pm). If you’re so inclined, you can watch it live here (click Stream IV). It’s Real Player only.

UPDATE: I threw the full prepared text of the speech into the OhioWiki: “Energy, Jobs and Progress for Ohio” speech.

Susan Purtee reactions

Here’s a pdf of Mayor Mike Coleman’s request for a review of CPD officer Susan Purtee’s behavior. It’s at 10TV News’s site.

Meanwhile, Purtee has been given desk duty:

On Tuesday, the department confirmed that Purtee was reassigned to a non-enforcement position until an Internal Affairs administrative investigation is completed.

There’s video at that link, where Maureen Kocot, who originally broke the story, interviews the mayor, who says:

“I was appalled. I was offended, both as an African American, but also as a mayor.”

Ann Fisher has a good column in the Dispatch:

Columbus Police Officer Susan L. Purtee can be as racist, bigoted and hateful as she wants. No law against that.

But would you want to watch her back while she’s patrolling neighborhoods? Would you want her watching yours?

And has the YouTube broadcast of videotapes depicting her views inflamed stereotypes and, therefore, harmed the ability of the police force to do its job?

This debacle, by the way, will not do anything to help the force’s flagging minority-recruitment program.

That last bit is a good point (my post on that here.)

The ADL has called for an investigation.

And the story has gone somewhat global- rather unfortunately for Columbus and Ohio- as the Guardian picks up the AP article.

(Previous post: The Columbus cop and the Jews.)

UPDATE: Jill Miller Zimon has a roundup here as well.

Oh, look. The Ohio Democratic Party is hiring (pdf).

Cincinnati and Cleveland have been ranked as the third and fourth poorest big cities in the US by the Census Bureau.

Hard-drinkin’ Ohio

Here’s a story I can fully get behind:

Sales of hard liquor in Ohio hit a record $672.7 million this year, led by greater consumption, higher prices and a strong demand for pricier scotch, vodka and other spirits.

Statewide, sales of spirits higher than 21 percent alcohol, or 42 proof, rose 5.3 percent, while volume sales rose by 2.5 percent to 10.2 million gallons, according to the Ohio Department of Commerce Division of Liquor Control’s report for the fiscal year ending June 30.

So judging from recent media releases- and of course you should live your life according to media releases- Ohioans are a bunch of fat drunks.

If it bleeds…

Columbus’s local TV news doesn’t cover much state politics:

Although Columbus, Ohio is the state capital and where most of the state government resides, there does not appear to be any governing in Columbus. There are murders, rapes, and robberies a plenty; sports and weather and that’s it. Additionally, the local news readers cannot be expected to work five minutes every half hour. They replay the local “news” over and over.

One recent trend I’ve noticed is for the TV newsers to report on the weather once every 15 seconds (that’s an approximation).

Parts of Ohio declared federal disaster area

From the Bucyrus Telegraph and the AP:

Residents of heavily flooded north-central Ohio can begin applying Tuesday for federal grants that will cover the cost of temporary housing and home repairs.

President Bush has declared the region a major disaster, a move that also allows the federal government to offer low-cost loans to cover uninsured property losses.

The declaration came Monday, a day after Gov. Ted Strickland toured the region with Federal Emergency Management Agency officials, where residents continue to clean out their homes and businesses damaged by last week’s record flooding.

Here’s Gov Strickland’s press release on asking for the disaster declaration.

ODP insults “Dog Catchers”

Todd Hoffman writing on the ODP blog:

So the Ohio GOP are now scraping the bottom of the barrel and calling for all GOP Dog Catchers living in the 15th District. If you are a Dog Catcher that would like to run for Congress, please email dogcatcher4congress@ohiogop.org.

Does that strike anyone as rather inept? Of course the dog catcher cliche has been going on forever, but does the Ohio Democratic Party really want to say “scraping the bottom of the barrel and calling for all GOP Dog Catchers”? They’ve even got a cartoon of what I guess is supposed to be a typical dog catcher:

Democratic Party’s Dog Catcher

It strikes me as a bit anti-blue collar: “scraping the bottom of the barrel” for someone who wears a uniform and, you know, works for a living. Frankly, we’d all be better off if more of such people ran for office.

(And sure Jerid, Todd Hoffman’s position is not a political one.)

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