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Hometown: New Jersey
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Yes, a coding course would cost more (the state has a grant program I'm looking into)

But I what I think the county is really trying to accomplish is providing a pool of health attendant cannon fodder. My research also reveals that while the field is expected to explode as the population ages, it features long hours, physical/emotional stress, rock-bottom pay, and sky-high turnover. I hope I'm not sounding snobbish: I know that a health attendant certification can be a stepping stone to a nursing career; and if I had no other qualifications, I wouldn't hesitate to accept the fact that it would be better than nothing. I just see taking the course as a waste of the marketable skills and experience that I do have, everyone's time, and the county's money.


Vancouver Concert Relocated Due to Crooked Tour Promoter

Take your seats, boys and girls -- time for a crash course in Concert Promoting 101!

Wikipedia: Tour promoters (also known as concert promoters or talent buyers) are the individuals or companies responsible for organizing a...special event performance...The promoter and (the performer's) agent...negotiate (a) live performance contract...

(T)he promoter must have upfront cash or sponsorship financing to...assume all the financial risk in putting on a show, so compensation also depends on how successful the promoter is at negotiating with vendors and creating sold-out shows...

Got it? Then, let's take a pop quiz: What's wrong with this picture?

Billboard: A Jon Bon Jovi & The Kings of Suburbia show scheduled for (Stanley Park)...(in) Vancouver, British Columbia, has been canceled. A spokesperson from Bon Jovi Tours Inc. has issued a statement:

The band was ready and willing to give a great performance...Unfortunately...(w)e have recently learned that (concert promoter) Paper Rain Performances has failed to (either) procure staging materials (or) pay the band, staging, security, lighting vendors, etc. As such, they have not met their contractual obligations....

(A) statement sent to Billboard (from) the promoter...reads:

We have worked tirelessly with the band’s management and have experienced extraordinary support from the City, the Parks Board and all of our other partners...We requested a postponement of the concert as we needed more time to sell it out. Unfortunately for everyone involved, the artist’s management could not agree on a postponement.

But why should Jon Bon Jovi want to postpone, especially since Paper Rain was paying him?

Canada.com: “(Bon Jovi) was supposed to be paid $900,000 US,” said (Paper Rain CEO Dennis) MacDonald. “He was paid 50 per cent of that up front, and he was paid a second third of that, and the final third was to be paid yesterday. (But) ticket sales simply didn’t do what they were supposed to do."

...(T)here were rumours flying...that Paper Rain had used money from ticket sales to pay Bon Jovi’s advance. "Untrue...The money that was paid to Bon Jovi up front came from our investors, who put up the money up front.”

One half plus one third plus one third...no wonder they were having a problem. But if Paper Rain didn't have enough upfront money to pay the performer AND the concert expenses, how did they qualify to be hired by Stanley Park? The ticket sales revenue, regardless of its size, isn't relevant -- and for what should be an obvious reason: that money would have to be refunded in the event of a cancellation. Therefore, it would be suicidal (if not illegal) to spend it beforehand, right?

Normally, money from ticket sales is held in a trust account...(But) MacDonald did allow that Paper Rain had been advanced some money by Tickets Tonight, a branch of Tourism Vancouver that was selling tickets to the Stanley Park show. “The way they work is that they advance what’s in the box office on a weekly basis,” said MacDonald. "(But) there’s still money that they’re holding." Asked when ticket holders will get refunds, MacDonald said, “we’re just working on that right now...with our insurance company...”

From a subsequent Purple Rain press release:

For the past several weeks, Paper Rain has been advocating tirelessly for a postponement in the Stanley Park Concert by Jon Bon Jovi and the Kings of Suburbia because of a lack of ticket sales. The reality is that not enough tickets were sold to cover the cost of the artist and band’s fee, much less the other substantial costs involved...

The creative design was complete. The massive stage was in the city; the production team was busy at work; the light design had been finalized, the traffic management plan, safety plan and security plans were all in place; porta-potties had been secured and catering negotiated.

Designed, finalized, managed, negotiated, secured, completed -- BUT NOT PAID FOR, and not as of a WEEK before the concert? If ALL of Paper Rain's contractors and suppliers are so wealthy that they can prep for free, THEY should have been the upfront investors!

We had urged the artist’s management to grant us a postponement in order to protect the ticket buyers, the City, the Park Board, and our suppliers...We regret...that effective immediately, as a result of the above, Paper Rain Performances is insolvent.

Congratulations on incriminating yourselves: The only thing Paper Rain was trying to protect was their filthy little Ponzi scheme. I suggest that they do less work with their insurance company and more with their lawyers: since this involved the duping of a government agency, an investigation should be on the way!


P.S. Seeing the writing on the wall (though they should have seen it a month sooner), the Bon Jovi camp moved the concert to Rogers Arena. However, no additional tickets will be sold.

Roger Stone!!! Damn, but he pops up in the weirdest places!

VillageVoice.com: ...Some of Stone's sordid history:

- exposed in the Watergate scandal for infiltrating the McGovern campaign

- registered as the agent for Ferdinand Marcos and a Bahamian prime minister alleged to be involved in the drug trade

- partnered with Lee Atwater, who conceived the Willie Horton race-baiting commercials for the Bush 1988 presidential campaign.

Stone has been a player in virtually every major GOP scandal, from aiding the contras to the mob shutdown of the Miami/Dade County canvassing board during the 2000 recount...

Roger Stone, an adviser to Carl Paladino, marched in the gay pride parade that the New York gubernatorial candidate has called a “a terrible thing.”

His towel frontal pic here is from his Swinger advertisement during the Bob DOLE "Family Values" campaign, in which Rog asked for dudes to join him and Nikki in hot pursuits.

Roger Stone, the longtime Republican dirty-tricks operative...is financing, staffing, and orchestrating the presidential campaign of Reverend Al Sharpton...(They) are, in a sense, brothers under the skin, outlandish personalities too large to be bound by the constraints that govern the rest of us.

The hot rumor in New York political circles has Roger Stone, the longtime GOP activist, as the source for Dan Rather's dubious Texas Air National Guard "memos." Anyone ever heard of him?

On edit:
The two clashed after Stone – known universally in political circles as a Nixon-era “dirty trickster” – helped bring down Trump friend and New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer in a prostitution scandal. But soon Stone and Trump were back and working together.

VillageVoice.com: Stone (has)...never been involved in a Democratic campaign, vowing publicly: "You can't work both sides of the street."

Well, morally speaking, that gives Stone a big leg up on Trump -- if you'll pardon the expression...


6. His campaign launch speech drew mixed reviews

a mix of getting caught in lies...

NJ.com: Christie said...that he has not raised taxes on New Jerseysans. That's not to say that taxpayers aren't paying more under his administration...(I)n 2010 Christie cut a tax credit on the working poor from 25 percent of the federal credit to 20 percent, a loss of about $117 for the average recipient...Christie's budget proposal for the current fiscal year included nearly two dozen taxes and fees...

ProPublica: When Christie signed his sixth budget on Friday, he reiterated his claim that his contributions to the state’s pensions have far outpaced those of his predecessors. As we pointed out in April, that’s only true if you exclude a $2.75 billion pension contribution by former Republican Gov. Christine Todd Whitman. Christie doesn’t count Whitman’s payment because it was made with borrowed money...

US News.com:
CHRISTIE: "We rolled up our sleeves and we went to work and we balanced six budgets in a row."

THE FACTS: He had no choice. The New Jersey constitution requires balanced budgets, as many states do, and they are achieved one way or the other, often with some accounting tricks.

...and psychoanalysis with a very poor prognosis

New York Times: It’s fundamentally nonsense. There are lines between brash and belligerent, between open and obnoxious, and, most important, between “telling it like it is” and not telling the truth. Mr. Christie crosses those lines all the time...

NJ. com: He has a silver tongue. But if you look closely, you can see that it is forked like a serpent's...(M)y warning to America: When Christie picks up the microphone, he speaks so clearly and forcefully that you assume genuine conviction is behind it.

GQ.com: "As far as what his temperament would be like if he were president, well, if Putin said something he didn’t like, he’d hang up and say, ’Give me the black box.’ And there goes Russia. Simple as that."

NorthJersey.com: He is not a man of subtlety and nuance. He is a fist-bumper, a forceful, loud, physical presence that fills a room in a way that is hard to ignore. His fuel is adrenaline, not reflection...His critics call him a bully. His supporters call him decisive. And now, if he becomes president, Chris Christie says he has the stuff that will unite a fractured nation. Really?

7. He and a rival candidate were guests of the Republican who lost the previous U.S. presidential election

CNN: What does one do at a presidential candidate slumber party? We'll likely never know exactly what happened at Mitt Romney's lakeside summer home in Wolfeboro, New Hampshire, where Chris Christie and Marco Rubio spent the night...

"What matters most to me is that he's a resource for me," said the New Jersey governor, who was an early backer of Romney's 2012 candidacy.

Romney...(said) he didn't give either candidates any advice on running. "These guys will make their own mistakes, Romney said. "Hopefully, they won't follow mine."

I'll try to put this as tactfully as possible, Governor Soprano: You have NO BUSINESS WHATSOEVER being within NINETY-NINE MILES of EITHER of those men!!! Not Rubio, because he, too, is a presidential candidate and should not be privy to your campaign confidences (did you offer him a vice presidential slot?); and not Romney, because his presidential campaign featured such brilliant tactics as not showing his tax returns and suggesting that how he ran his businesses should not be a campaign issue. Political mentoring from Mitt Romney is like marriage counseling from king Henry The Eighth!

8. He spent Independence Day Leading A Parade In New Hampshire instead of in New Jersey (DailyKos):


So ends the inaugural week of Christie's presidential run -- which should be the closest to a presidential inauguration that he'll ever get. But there is a bright side: he has nowhere to go BUT up...


Eisner is shocked -- SHOCKED!!! -- that less-than-beautiful women tend to be funnier?

The funniest women I grew up with rooted their humor (and success) in exploting either their inadequacies (Goldie Hawn, Joan Rivers, Marlo Thomas, Mary Tyler Moore, Katey "Peg Bundy" Sagal, Juila Louis-Dreyfuss), their lack of desirability by men (Totie Fields, Phyllis Diller, Minnie Pearl, Moms Mabley, Patricia "Hyacinth Bucket" Routledge), or both (Roseanne, Mo'Nique, Lucille Ball, Jennifer "Edina Monsoon" Saunders, Fran "The Nanny" Drescher). The only woman I can think of to put into Eisner's "highly beautiful, highly funny" category is Barbra "I Dream of Jeannie" Eden.

Just as Goldie says, she didn't start out in life as being beautiful -- she learned to "cure" her "ugliness" by getting others to join her in laughing at her. And I remember reading that when Gilda Radner was asked if she would rather be funny or glamorous, she replied, "Glamorous is too hard."

To answer your question, it does matter, because Eisner doesn't seem to realize that his "problem" finding beautiful, funny women is caused by what Dr. Bell Hooks calls capitalist patriarchy -- a fancy way of saying that Eisner does not fret about highly attractive, highly funny MEN being in equally short supply. From Fran Leibowitz:

"The cultural values (of humor) are male: For a woman to say a man is funny is the equivalent of a man saying that a woman is pretty. Also, humor is largely aggressive and pre-emptive, and what's more male than that?"

Beautiful women don't HAVE to invest in being funny -- or smart, or brave, or competent, or good leaders, or talented, or even particularly sexy: why knock yourself out if your beauty can win you male approval (and access to their wealth and power) just as easily?


4. He's lost control of his campaign slogan's Twitter hashtag


- I will tell it like it is, you're an angry fat man who needs anger management courses

- Christie sold out the people of NJ to Exxon. He couldn't care less about us...or you.

- Of course he's lying;His lips are moving.

- Chris Christie has a 31% approval rating, and is the most unpopular governor in the nation!

- "I have a bad economic record."

- Remember when @GovChristie helped hundreds of thousands w/o power instead of running for office? Neither does S. Jersey

- You're a crook, a scam, and an embarrassment to my state. Did you have to check w/Norcross before you ran?

5. He's Been Endorsed By A Governor Who is (Also?) Looking At Corruption Charges

NorthJersey.com: Governor Christie received his first major endorsement...(from Governor) Paul LePage, a Maine conservative with a fiery persona that rivals Christie's..." (T)he only difference I see between Chris Christie and I -- he's a little bit shy. I'm gonna work with him for the next year, bring him out of his shell.”

The Rachel Maddow Show:

Bangor Daily News: Members of the Legislature’s Government Oversight Committee voted unanimously Wednesday to start a formal investigation into whether Gov. Paul LePage illegally or unethically used taxpayer money to force Good Will-Hinckley to fire House Speaker Mark Eve...

LePage’s legal counsel argued in a letter to the committee that...th(eir) Office of Program Evaluation and Government Accountability...lacks any authority to investigate the governor...OPEGA Director Beth Ashcroft disagrees...the probe by her agency would involve tracking the flow of taxpayer dollars to a nonprofit organization. “We are not going to be drawing any conclusions about whether the governor exercised his authority appropriately or not...That would be for others to decide.”

NorthJersey.com: A spokeswoman for the Democratic National Committee said...“The first major endorsement Governor Christie receives after announcing he’s running for president is from a governor who is facing impeachment threats for his role in exacting retribution upon a political adversary...Can't say we're surprised.”

At least LePage had enough class to ADMIT that he threatened to withhold federal funding to a charter school if they hired a Democratic rival...maybe he really CAN teach Christie a few things about personal accountability...


George Balanchine said a ballet dancer's skin should be the color of a peeled apple

Well, you know what happens to the color of peeled apples after a while...Balanchine via The Dance Theater of Harlem, which has been doing classical ballet since 1969.

Congrats, Misty -- but would this be happening if your skin was the color of roast coffee?


And let the Crew Christie Presidental Campaign screwups begin!

1. His campaign launch draws as many supporters as protestors:

North Jersey.com: Governor Christie launched his long-awaited presidential campaign Tuesday...(before) a crowd of about 1,000 inside Livingston High School, his alma mater...

North Jersey.com: More than a thousand demonstrators - mostly dressed in red and carrying banners and signs - congregated on the front lawn outside Livingston High School Tuesday morning to protest Governor Christie announcing his presidential bid...

2. He uses campaign music by someone who's supporting a candidate from the opposing party:

Asbury Park Press: Christie, who announced his candidacy for president at Livingston High School on Tuesday, June 30, walked to the school's podium to We Weren't Born to Follow. After the announcement, the rocker's Have A Nice Day and Who Says You Can't Go Home were played as exit music...

Asbury Park Press: Hillary Clinton attended a fundraiser hosted by Jon Bon Jovi at the Molly Pitcher Inn (June 30)...which donors...attend(ed) for campaign donations...Attendees tweeted from the event, including photos of Clinton speaking and Bon Jovi playing guitar...

3. He Gets a "Not From The Onion" award from the New York Times:

With two pillars of his presidential run — his record and his judgment — looking wobblier than ever, Mr. Christie must build a campaign around his most raw and prodigious asset: his personality...

But shouldn't that be "his personality DEFECTS"? Anyway, we're off the the races!


Christie's House of (Race) Cards

Wonderful news -- it looks like Christie has had a major breakthrough on race relations and discrimination!

Recently, I posted here that Christie's call for a dialogue about racism had fallen on the wrong ears:

Shouldn't Christie have told the whites that not looking racism in the eye is the root the problem, and the blacks that adhering to their love and faith was at the root of the solution?...Too bad Christie's not enough of a leader to point out to white people that racist hate by white people does exist...

Well, someone or something must have gotten through to him, because four days ago, Christie repeated his call for a dialogue on race to all of New Jersey on his monthly radio show!

Chris Christie, NJ101.5 Radio, 6/25/15, (27:00): ...I think that the way you go about trying to fix this problem is for the leaders in this country -- and not just elected leaders, religious leaders, community leaders -- need to start having these conversations on a regular basis in our communities. And we need to call out the people who are not conducting themselves in a way that is not respectful of others and in fact borders on being racist. We can't ignore it, we can't make excuses for it; we have to call it out...

I think the way to do this is for folks of all colors (to be) interacting with each other and standing up for the people who are the victims of this kind of conduct...I think what fuels the emotion on both sides is fear of violence...rejection...I think so much of this hate comes from fear...of the differences between us.

Bravo, Governor!!!

Well, if I'm going criticize Christie every time he commits a "crime," it's only fair that I point it out when he gets it right, right? (Fortunately, doing either one or the other gives me pleasure, LOL!) The point is, he's come a long way, baby, when it comes to thinking about fighting discrimination:

The Grio.com, January 2012: New Jersey Governor Chris Christie says the turmoil of the civil rights movement of the 1950s and 60s could have been avoided had states simply put African-Americans’ rights and integration to a vote. "People would have been happy to have referendum on civil rights rather than fighting and dying in the streets in the South," (he) said...

Christie was comparing the civil rights movement to the fight for same-sex marriage, calling for a referendum on gay marriage in New Jersey...(He) says he’ll veto a Democratic measure legalizing gay marriages, but a public vote on the matter would be fine with him.

He got drawn and quartered for that, and rightfully so:

New Jersey Newsroom, January 2012: The comment that the civil rights movement of the 1960s could have been settled through a national or southern states voter referendum stunned Assembly Speaker Sheila Y. Oliver who became the first African-American woman to head the lower house in 2010. “Gov. Christie better sit down with some of New Jersey’s great teachers for a history lesson...It’s unfathomable to even suggest a referendum would have been the better course. Governor, people were fighting and dying in the streets of the South...because the majority refused to grant minorities equal rights by any method...The governor’s comment is an insult to those who had no choice but to fight and die in the streets..."

“It’s difficult to understand what the governor was thinking,” Assemblywoman Bonnie Watson Coleman...said. “...(C)an you imagine the outcome if civil rights in this country, during this very racially charged time in our history, had been left up to a vote?...If the governor was hoping to defend his reprehensible stance on marriage equality by suggesting that those who fought and died for civil rights...would have preferred a referendum -- that by all historical accounts would have been most likely defeated -- he failed miserably.”

Assemblyman John Wisniewski, the state Democratic chairman, said, "Rosa Parks didn't get to the front of the bus through a ballot question, and Jim Crow laws weren't repealed by public referendum...To call for a public referendum on any civil right is the refuge of someone who refuses to lead...Governor Christie has an opportunity to leave a mark in history as a someone who, when the beacon of civil rights called his name, stood up to be counted among the leaders...My hope is that he finds the courage to take up the challenge and joins in the great American tradition of fighting to expand our civil rights and for justice."

Yeah, but that was three and half years ago. Civil rights as popularity contests has always been a stock item in the right wing ideological inventory. The important thing is that Christie's thinking has obviously evolved since then.

Huffington Post, October 2013: Gov. Chris Christie's administration...submitted a formal withdrawal (of) his appeal...of a judge's recent ruling in favor of gay marriage in New Jersey to the state Supreme Court...

Christie's administration says he strongly disagrees with the court substituting its judgment "for the constitutional process of the elected branches or a vote of the people." But he says the Supreme Court was clearly going to favor same-sex marriage and that he has a constitutional duty to enforce the law...

Yeah, but that was nearly two years ago. In deciding he'd reached his Waterloo and withdrawing his appeal, he was no doubt feeling discouraged and defeated and bitter, even though the withdrawal probably had more to do with not wanting to be seen as gambling on a sure loser. The important thing is that Christie's thinking has obviously evolved since then.

Asbury Park Press, June 2015: Gov. Chris Christie (is)...not happy with the Supreme Court ruling that makes same-sex marriage legal nationwide. (He) said he believes it was a matter for each state to decide, not the courts..."I don't agree with the way it was done...This is something that should be decided by the people...(F)ive lawyers get to impose it under our system."

Yeah, but that was three days ago...


Christie's latest power failure: Another storm, another self-serving response

Did you know that Southern New Jersey was devastated by Sandy-like storms and damage on June 23rd?

NJ.com: The threat of severe weather was known for several days across New Jersey, prompting concern from forecasters who warned the state would become a pressure cooker for dangerous conditions...

While...North Jersey residents woke up to the hum of air-conditioners and cooled homes...much of the southern half of the state awoke to stuffy, dark houses. A commuter in Morristown might check the traffic report, while another in Deptford may be wondering how to get their overturned car out of the mall parking lot.

Hundreds of thousands lost power. Massive trees were uprooted and brought down on homes and across roads. Lawn furniture was tossed like feathers, and parts of buildings were ripped apart and strewn into streets and parking lots...(D)amage to the property and power grid could rival the derecho of 2012, which devastated the southern half of the state months before Hurricane Sandy...

Well, don't feel too bad -- apparently Chris Christie didn't, either:

NJ.com: Gov. Chris Christie said (June 26) that at least 90 percent of...the several hundreds of thousands of people whose lights went dark earlier this week...during New Jersey's recent storms should have their lights on by Friday night. Christie also explained why he hasn't declared an emergency for areas of South Jersey hit hard by the weather.

"Right now what's happening is FEMA is on the ground with the Office of Emergency Management of the State Police and they are assessing the damage level. You don't need a state of emergency declaration in order to get federal funds if you need a certain threshold and if there's anything that a state of emergency declaration would do to enhance our ability to get more help more quickly, I'd be happy to do that," Christie said...

[font size="+1"]And if you're planning to announce your run for president and will be traveling heavily afterwards, the last thing you need is a federal state of emergency declaration, as it would probably interfere with your getting the kind of national headlines you want![/font]

The (June 24) news cycle made a couple things pretty clear to anyone who was paying attention: Gov. Chris Christie plans to officially announce he's running for president next week...The news day started with a local media outlet breaking news of Christie's upcoming announcement, scheduled for (June 30) at Livingston High School...Spokespeople for the governor's office and those tied to his 2016 political action committee refused to provide comment on the story. The spokespeople maintained their silence throughout the day (June 25).

Well, that's fine with me: as of June 25, Christie had something more important to worry about -- nearly half a million affected by a storm in South Jersey! Well, later that day...

NJ.com: The governor showed up to a 101.5FM's studio for his monthly "Ask the Governor" radio show. While working inside the building, Christie brushes off reporters about the day's news..."There's been absolutely no final decision made by me."

(O)nce on the air...Christie said..."I haven't made a decision. Let's everybody remain calm." (But) NJ Advance Media reported (that) the interim superintendent of the school district (where) Christie plans to make the announcement...spoke with...the governor's brother on (June 24), and (also said) an advance crew has already been to the school...Livingston school officials say they were told to be ready...for Christie to be at the high school on (June 30). "They asked us not to say anything," said...the superintendent.

The governor was asked about how he could be so adamant about not making up his mind when his brother was talking to school officials about details of an announcement when he left the New Jersey radio station..."I have absolutely no idea what the school superintendent is talking about," Christie said...

And what did he have to say about the storm and his response to it? Well, I listened to the entire June 25 Ask The Governor radio show: What should have been the lead subject wasn't mentioned for 30 minutes, and he just repeated his tale about no need to declare a state of emergency since the estimated damages automatically qualified the area for federal aid. He makes it sound like the lights went out for a couple hours in a couple of neighborhoods -- cars were overturned!!! He offered no info on shelters, no helpline numbers, not even an invitation to call the station if you were still in dire straits. Has he even toured the area?

Imagine if he'd stated on the radio show that his presidential plans (such as they are) were off the table until both the budget AND the aftermath of the storm were under control, then enthusiastically explained how he was going to get 'em done. Being able refer to the great job he'd done after hurricane Sandy would have been helpful, of course. But the point is, it would have made him sound so much more -- well, presidential!

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