Monday, January 11, 2010

Everybody must get stoned

Here's a video from on the medical marijuana law's passage in New Jersey.  Having passed in the State Senate and Assembly it goes to Gov. Corzine who will sign it before he leaves office January 19th.  It's not as free wheeling as the California law apparently based on comparisons of the legislation but it will be available in six months. What's interesting is there is absolutely no discussion about the prescription available of marinol, a pill derived from the effective ingredient in marijuana: THC. As you watch the video, you'll note the pill form and its availability never comes up at all. From personal experience as a caregiver, MSV knows this pill has been available by prescription for well over a decade now in New York State.

When they show the clips of the people in California, you'll actually hear one "medical user" comment on how it's better quality than when they used to get it off the street. Which kinda leads you to believe the usage preceded any medical condition.  (When you see the same guy toking on a pipe, well that's the money shot as they say.)  California is rumored to have rampant abuse of the law's intended target. It strikes MSV as correct that the people with chronic illnesses are being used as mere tools to help achieve wider access for people who are borderline applicants at best or out and out abusers of the drug for reasons having nothing to do with any medical application.

There's some reference also to crime levels rising around the clinics where the marijuana is distributed but that's not convincing without the statistics to support such a contention. Bottom line; it's typical of a strategy to gain acceptance, cry victimization and then keep pushing the envelope.

Is anyone in this society not a victim any more?

Here's a link on the drug's effects and why it doesn't make any sense to make a wager with someone who's been partying. They won't recall the bet.  Makes it kinda hard to collect.  Now we're not taking a moral position against the drug itself, although its abuse can certainly be couched in those terms, but we just don't like this creeping incrementalism toward decriminalization, which is what this is really about.  If that's the goal, then push for its passage, not in the name of compassion.

Those that favor the legislation, would you like to see a distribution clinic next door to your home?   Well you just might in about six months.  We'll call it a jobs creator, yeah that's the ticket.

Update: California is considering legalization now.  They've run up the tab and it looks like they are out of ideas and this is the one they've come up with for tax revenue.  From the article:

The law would also call for a fee of $50 per ounce sold and would help fund drug eradication and awareness programs. It could help  pull California out of debt, supporters say, raising up to $990 million from the fees.

Horse Sense: St. Patrick's Coming Titanic Disaster

Nothing speaks louder than the green and St. Paddy's Day green is the greatest intoxicant in Hoboken since the exodus of quarters via the John Corea Choo Choo.  Although the crowds have grown ever larger, the town's ability to handle the increasing problems is diminishing.  Witness the report of 80 injuries and other outrageous behavior last year, you would think an overhaul is sorely overdue.  But over the last several years, the initial outrage is met with receptivity and then no serious action is taken on moving the parade from Saturday or anything significant and the cycle starts all over again.

Although we like seeing lots of people having a good time and young guys happily crating around packs of Bud Lite, (real men don't load up on light beer lads) - the downside is far less appealing.  Da Horsey has seen a woman barely of drinking age being carried staggering at 12 noon on Washington Street and last year confronted a guy urinating on someone's home on 7th St off Willow practically on their front door in broad daylight.  Washington St. below 6th St. was a mosh pit late into the afternoon and the police presence was just about as overwhelmed as Kevin Bacon in the final sequence in "Animal House."

Once again the parade has been confirmed for a Saturday and the flood of visitors will start arriving Friday from all over the state.  Assurances again have been given lip service and discussions around trumpeting "zero tolerance" are flowing from the lips of our local public servants.  There's no way the police force even if doubled can handle the size of these crowds flowing across the town like an assault of locusts.  It's misguided to place the burden on the police considering the complete ineffectiveness of issuing tickets.

This Bourbon St. Amateur Hour is going to produce a very bad outcome, whether it's life or limb lost or an outrageous assault shocking this town to its senses.  Placing the responsibility on controlling this on the vastly outmanned police force on this day is completely inadequate and a foolhardy action at best.  Somber declarations of "zero tolerance" are anything but with the police forced to make at best random decisions to nab an open container violation while two other violators do the same or worse steps away.

When the inevitable bad event(s) occur, with the resulting black eye for Hoboken, there's going to be a lot of backpedaling and more wishy washy statements coming from City Hall.  And it will be too late.  In advance of such an outcome, MSV holds the City Council primarily at fault for not putting in the serious effort of responding to the voices rising up in the community from all corners of town since last year's parade.  The mayor will probably be the focal point after said tragedy, but it's really the City Council that has dropped the ball.  Surely, there will be enough blame to go around.

Councilman Nino Giacchi is the head of the St. Patrick's subcommittee, so we're giving him a special shout out in advance.  Will you be putting up your assets as collateral when this event produces a lawsuit against the town?  Not applicable you say counselor.  Well, why are you exposing the Hoboken citizens to this unnecessary risk?  With 80 injuries reported last year alone along with large appliances and urine flying out of the sky from buildings, what exactly will be your defense in the court of public opinion?

The lack of serious adjustment in the parade is an out and out disgrace and when the inevitable disaster pales comparatively to the 80 injuries just last year, you are at the top of the list in culpability.

Talking Ed Note: This Horse Sense editorial was sent to all members of the City Council Sunday with an invitation to post a reply here.  MSV will post any that are offered.


2010 Budget Interview with Judy Tripodi (pt. 3)

Here's the first segment posted in our series of the comprehensive interview with Judy Tripodi, the fiscal state monitor last Thursday.  In this audio* portion (part III), Judy highlights ramping up the maintenance side in equipment and what is prudent in a five to seven year plan.  She also discusses how Hoboken can better tackle the proper accounting management approach in equipment for big ticket items for Police, Fire, and infrastructure.

In addition, there's a comparison of the cash flow improvements with one million in TANs (short term financial bonds) going away, retirements, and other areas that will not be present in the 2011 fiscal year budget beginning July 1.

Judy also discusses the efforts to bring up the financial records to a much higher level of execution and functionality, internal accounting, and the new accounting software tools/software implemented.  The package updated in the City is Edmunds, a firm providing integrated financial accounting and municipal software for local governments since 1984.  Locally, there's a mention of its implementation in Hackensack here.

* All segments are in audio, unedited, complete and unrehearsed.

More to come...

Now Serving... flu shots to all - TODAY!

The City of Hoboken announced this earlier and it's today for folks interested.