But every now and then - certainly not a regular event - we get a forecast for snow and Easterly winds. That means that the lake effect snow is greater than just the snow alone ... and drifts begin to form - usually across our driveway, which is about 80 feet in length.
Yesterday, we shovelled the driveway and porch twice. Today, we'll have to do it again - maybe twice...
So here are the things I'd blog about if I weren't required to go shovel about five inches or so...
* As we discussed last night on Eye On Toledo (podcast with interview), the Toledo Police Patrolman's Association filed an unfair labor practice charge against Mayor Carty Finkbeiner and the City of Toledo. I spoke with
Donato Iorio, the attorney for the union, who explained that Carty's press statement from Thursday provided the proof of the charge.
Carty's statement said:
"Second, Toledo Police Patrolman’s Association negotiators, yesterday, asked for a contract calling for a double-digit increase in pay over three years. That pay raise would virtually force the layoff of all Local 7 and 2058 employees, if it were granted."
Iorio said the negotiations were supposed to be confidential and Carty broke the established ground rules by talking about the union's opening position.
Dan Wagner, the president of TPPA, also told me that the union's bargaining team was ordered to return to the streets, thereby eliminating their ability to meet in negotiations and that the union members were under an internal investigation over Carty's claim that they urged another city union, AFSCME Local 7, to reject the contract the city had negotiated with Local 7 leaders.
* In 2001, President George Bush started to discuss the economy and how things were not as good as we would have liked. He was 'reprimanded' by the Democrats and the press for 'talking down the economy' and for being negative.
I can't help but notice the hypocrisy over the last 18 months or so with Democrats and, now, President-Elect Obama telling us how dire everything is, that we might actually be in a depression rather than a recession, and how government spending and them, of course, are the only things that will save the day. Never mind their complaints over the deficit the last several years, if they don't spend and escalate the deficit, doom and gloom will descend and the world will end.
Also, despite their explanation of how bad things are, it's not anywhere near as bad as it's been - and we survived. In the '70s, unemployment hit 9.0%, inflation skyrocketed, we had to ration gas, labor strikes seemed a daily announcement and interest rates hit 12% and the term 'stagflation' hit the vocabulary.
Policies introduced during those years made things worse. By 1980, the prime interest rate had hit 21.5 with unemployment hitting it's peak of 10.8% in 1983. Many of the policies implemented under Pres. Ronald Reagan had the desired effect and things started to improve.
This is not to minimize the struggles that people face today, but they're not as bad now as they were then, no matter what the media and politicians tell us.
* The Wall Street Journal had a terrific article yesterday by Steven Moore that is a must read: 'Atlas Shrugged': From Fiction to Fact in 52 Years. (subscription may be required)
* Back to the snow, can anyone really talk about global warming with a straight face? This article details some of the record cold temps we've been having, but of particular interest is the discussion from the climate scientists over their modelling and how they admit prior models didn't take everything into account.
I believe wholeheartedly in climate change. If the climate didn't change, we wouldn't have glacial grooves on Kelley's Island just a few miles away from me. I just believe that most of the changes are result of geological and astronomical factors, not man-made and that any actions we take as humans need to be balanced, considering cost and amount of impact. Why spend billions and billions to maybe change the temperature by .1 degree? Is a .1 degree change really going to impact us in such a way that we cannot compensate? Personally, I'd love to have warmer temperatures - I love the location of my house and wouldn't mind if I could grow palm trees here...
* Why don't we have good Bugs Bunny cartoons on Television on Saturday mornings anymore? I realize that some of them have been banned - you never see Yosemite Sam because of his penchant for firing his guns - but they're still classics and should at least be available on the Cartoon Network or something.
Okay - I've put it off long enough...off to shovel snow.