Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Brother, Can You Spare the State a Dime?

Well, 2015 is almost here, and the state has a $265 million in the General Fund.  Medicaid, prisons, and other necessities can be affected by this.  It's really put up or shut up time for our lawmakers. There's two possibilities that could be put in play:

1)  Raise taxes  But a vote to increase taxes is like a kiss of death for both Republicans and Democrats. This isn't going to happen.

2)  Institute a state lottery. But the more conservative elements will have a conniption fit.  Also, it's in effect a tax on stupidity. Still, I know of a few who regularly travel over the state line to purchase Tennessee lottery tickets.

Maybe we need some creative other solutions:

1) Hold a super-duper bake sale. But, let's face it, Alabama baking is nothing to write home about.

2) Trim back on expenses. Cut back on fat cat state employees.

3) Tax sex. Think of the braggart factor.

4) Try to get an NFL franchise.

5) Impose a tax on football tickets.

6) Establish a bikini tax.

7) Elect Nick Saban as Governor next go-round.

Can you think of any others? Alabama is seriously in deep trouble.  But if we get a bad hurricane in 2015, we're in deep shit.

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Brother Bob, the Porn King

I suppose you might have heard about the arch segregationist who dropped off the radar and reincarnated himself as a writer, even writing a best seller.  Yup, this was a former Alabamian.

Another one, less known, was a fire and brimstone Church of Christ preacher, who got tired of it all. and disappeared.

Now where did Brother Bob Wilde go?  His former flock wondered and wondered.  Finally, a church member with more money than sense hired a detective to look for Brother Bob, fearing that he met with foul play.

In a sense he had.  He traipsed off to wildest Tennessee where he ran a chicken ranch breeding fighting cocks and another kind: having a trio of daring doxies in a double wide trailer to console the hillbillies up there.

Also, this led him to a literary sideline: he wrote hillbilly noir porn to satisfy the totally sick tastes of Yankees who were totally credulous when it came to any notorious story about rural Southerners.  For a long time, only Erskine Caldwell and Frank Yerby filled that gap.  Brother Bob really knew his stuff.

Sunday, November 30, 2014

UAB Might Drop Football

Lost in the hoopla associated with the Iron Bowl (which Auburn lost, 44-55), there's another football story under the radar on most sports news services.

The University of Alabama - Birmingham (UAB) might be dropping its football program!  That's right, no more UAB Blazer football!  Anyway, this story needs to be confirmed. 

Apparently, Alabama is not all football crazy!

Friday, November 28, 2014

Lovely Lady Friday CX

....says Roll Tide!

A sweet Bama girl with bad taste in teams.

Tomorrow is the Auburn - Alabama game.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Untied Bikini Top

An unfortunate accident resulted from a prank.  While Brittany Lahm was driving, a backseat passenger untied her bikini top.  Ms. Lahm was distracted and took her hands off the wheel briefly;

An appeals court has cleared her of culpability for the fatal crash in agreeing she faced an "unforeseen emergency" when a back-seat passenger untied her bikini top.

The July 2008 crash occurred on the New York Thruway.

Lahm and a group of friends were returning to Rockland County after a day at the shore. Brandon Berman, who allegedly pulled the bikini strings, was killed.

The Brooklyn Appellate Division upheld the conclusion of a Rockland jury, which found Lahm's bikini top problem constituted "a sudden and unforeseen emergency not of her own making."

Monday, November 17, 2014

An Ass for the Republicans to Ride

Last week asses made the news in a big way.

First of all, there was the much-replicated gluteus maximi of Kim Kardashian displayed on Paper magazine in its full glory.  She was definitely a cheeky lady, to be sure.

Then there was Jonathan Gruber, an MIT economics professor who was a White House consultant for the Affordable Care Act.  He declared that a lack of transparency around the Affordable Care Act was politically advantageous.

"Lack of transparency is a huge political advantage. And basically, call it the 'stupidity of the American voter' or whatever, but basically that was really, really critical to getting the thing to pass." Gruber had  said.

In other words, a little bit of the shell game.  The Republicans are likely to say a lot about this, whatever the merits or demerits of the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare).

Speaking about asses. here's a more pleasing one:

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Why in the Hell Are We Voting on This?

More amendments to our dippy State Constitution of 1901, the longest of all the 5o states.  In my opinion, this is "feel good" legislation or kowtowing to the N.R.A.


Statewide Amendment 5
Proposing an amendment to the Constitution of Alabama of 1901, to amend Amendment 597, now appearing as Section 36.02 of the Official Recompilation of the Constitution of Alabama of 1901, as amended, to clarify that the people have the right to hunt, fish, and harvest wildlife subject to reasonable regulations that promote conservation and management of fish and wildlife and preserve the future of hunting and fishing. (Proposed by Act 2014-286)
Yes ( )
No ( )

Amendment 5 proposes an amendment known as the “Sportsperson’s Bill of Rights.” If Amendment 5 IS PASSED, it would clarify that the people of Alabama have the right to hunt, fish and harvest wildlife, including the use of traditional methods. This right would be subject to reasonable regulations to conserve wildlife and preserve the future of hunting and fishing. Amendment 5 would not affect current laws relating to eminent domain, trespass, or property rights. It would also make hunting and fishing by the public the preferred means of managing and controlling wildlife in Alabama.
If Amendment 5 IS DEFEATED, the people of Alabama would still have the right to hunt and fish using traditional methods, but that right may be limited by existing or future laws and regulations. Also, the State Constitution would not state that hunting and fishing by the public is the preferred means of managing and controlling wildlife in Alabama.
No source of funding is required for this law.
The measure will have no impact on taxes.
The Constitutional authority for passage of this Amendment is set forth in Sections 284, 285, and 287 of the Constitution of Alabama of 1901. These sections outline the way a constitutional amendment may be put to the people of the State for a vote. 

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Prostitutes in Florence

Florence, Alabama has a local legend that a prostitute plied her trade on the south side near Wilson Dam while riding a bicycle built for two, and carrying her customers to her apartment nearby.  Unfortunately, I have not found any concrete evidence of this very enterprising working girl.

However, there is a lot of circumstantial evidence that a Kate Nelson was a madam who operated a disorderly house in South Florence during the 1920's.  It was especially popular with construction workers who were then building Wilson Dam.  No locals owned up to visiting her, and it's likely that this sort of history is not appreciated by the local Fundies!

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Creepy Calendar

Lindner Caskets, a manufacturer of coffins in Poland, has for several years published a calendar featuring nude women posed next to or on coffins.  This has to be a new twist to the art calendar, and may be the creepiest calendar ever!

Sunday, August 31, 2014

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Thoughts on Immigration

Let's face it: We have an illegal immigration problem, and we're not managing it very well.

Part of the problem is that Mexico and a few other countries to the south have millions in poverty, and they see immigration to the U.S. as a personal, practical solution.  And, for many, it is.  They come here and integrate themselves into the community pretty well over time.

Also, let's face it: a number of businesses or agricultural concerns would have problems in finding people to work for what they pay if it weren't for the illegal immigrants.  That pretty much accounted for why there were so many Spanish-speakers moving into northwest Alabama several years ago.  (You can get darned good tacos in Franklin County now.)  And a few years ago, when the state really cracked down on illegals, it was hard to find people to pick the crops.

But, screw it!  There's something just plain un-American to take advantage of those people because they are willing out of desperation to work for very slim wages.  And, to really load the argument shotgun: it seems to be also un-Christian.  And people who do that just plain suck.

A big part of the problem is the widespread willingness of employers to exploit these people coupled with almost nothing in the way of penalties for their doing so.  Plus they have the ethics of an alligator.

So, here's ol' Elvis's plan to deal with this kind of thing:

1.  Levy hefty fines for each person hired without documentation on the person or company who did the hiring.

2.  If those persons were hired for exploitation wages, then the person who did that spends some time in the cooler.

3.  If child exploitation or prostitution is involved, then send the offender to one of the more nasty prisons.  The Limestone Correction Facility is one.

4.  Develop a program for guest workers, legitimize the process, and make the social safety net available for them too.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Alexis de Toqueville on Journalists

In America there is scarcely a hamlet which has not its own newspaper. It may readily be imagined that neither discipline nor unity of design can be communicated to so multifarious a host, and each one is consequently led to fight under his own standard. All the political journals of the United States are arrayed indeed on the side of the administration or against it; but they attack and defend in a thousand different ways. They can not succeed in forming those great currents of opinion which overwhelm the most solid obstacles. This division of the influence of the press produces a variety of other consequences which are scarcely less remarkable. The facility with which journals can be established induces a multitude of individuals to take part in them; but as the extent of competition precludes the possibility of considerable profit, the most distinguished classes of society are rarely led to engage in these undertakings. But such is the number of the public prints that, even if they were a source of wealth, writers of ability could not be found to direct them all. The journalists of the United States are usually placed in a very humble position with a scanty education and a vulgar turn of mind.
But although the press is limited to these resources, its influence in America is immense. It is the power which impels the circulation of political life through all the districts of the vast territory. Its eye is open constantly to detect the secret springs of political designs, and to summon leaders of all parties to the bar of public opinion. It rallies the interest of the community round certain principles, and it draws up the creed which factions adopt; for it affords a means of intercourse between parties which hear, and which address each other without ever having been in immediate contact. When a great number of the organs of the press adopt the same line of conduct, their influence becomes irresistible; and public opinion, when it is perpetually assailed from the same side, eventually yields to the attack. In the United States each separate journal exercises but little authority but the power of the periodical press is only second to that of the people.

From Democracy in America, by Alexis de Toqueville.

Monday, August 18, 2014

The Pink Pony Pub

The Pink Pony Pub is a landmark in Gulf Shores, on the Redneck Riviera.

Disrespecting the KKK in Pulaski

The original (post Civil War) Ku Klux Klan was founded in Pulaski, Tennessee in 1865.  Years later, the United Daughters of the Confederacy installed a plaque on the law office where this took place.

The plaque was inscribed "Ku Klux Klan organized in this, the law office of Judge Thomas M. Jones, Dec. 24, 1865".

The residents of Pulaski were not thrilled with this plaque; but could not do anything about it until the building was sold.  Then, the new owner could have kept the plaque or had it taken down.

However, he simply reversed the plaque, effectively sending a message that the community wished sent.

Saturday, August 16, 2014

On a Shingle!

Here's a classic Army recipe: CREAMED BEEF ON TOAST (SOS)

1/2 lb. ground beef
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
4 tbsp. sifted flour
1 cup evaporated milk
1 cup water
2 tbsp. butter - hell, add more if you want

Brown ground beef in its own fat.  Remove excess fat and save for making roux. Season with salt and pepper.  To make a roux, place 2 tbsp. reserved fat in double broiler or heavy pan.  Slowly add sifted flour, stirring constantly over low heat until thoroughly blended.

Cook for five minutes. Do not brown.

Combine milk and water. Add butter and scald (not burn) in double broiler or heavy pan. Add roux to scalded milk, stirring constantly until thoroughly blended. Add meat mixture and cook about 10 minutes, or until desired consistency.  Serve on toast. 

Hot sauce is optional.

Monday, July 7, 2014

Should Alabama Legalize Marijuana?

A recent poll on had the interesting result that a majority of the Alabamians polled were in favor of legalizing marijuana.

My guess is that this majority would be overrepresented in the  "wet" counties, and underrepresented in the "dry" counties.

Some other points of interest:

1.  Republicans were 61% of those polled; Democrats 39%.

2.  A simple majority reported using marijuana at one time; but most were not present users.

3.  Many (65%) of the people polled saw it as a convenient "sin tax" or source of revenue.

4.  Although medical marijuana usage was never brought before the legislature, about 10% could see it as a possibility.

5.  Only 10% were completely opposed to marijuana being legalized.

So, will some brave soul in the Legislature go out on a limb and draft a bill?   It would take big balls, or big boobs, to do it.

Don't bogart that joint, my friend.