Saturday, October 12, 2013

The WGAN ‘big break’ experience this morning

For those of you who might have tuned in this morning, you already know that a ‘half-hour segment,’ once you allow for the pleasantries of conversation, amounts to no more than 15 minutes or so of active discussion time.   And you know that we have ‘a voice made for print’ to go along with ‘a face made for radio.’

We’ve often said that we can say hello for 15 minutes, so the brevity of the time slot this morning permitted touching upon only a smattering of the items in the outline we had with us so we’d be able to avoid any ‘dead air.’


Since we covered so little of it, we’re following up by ‘copying’ the list here, and adding a few notes or edits as we wish…

Notes for WGAN w/Dennis Bailey, Saturday, October 12, 2013

Main talking points:

  • The shadowy, unaccountable world of 'quasi-governmental authorities' spending OPM on various 'economic development' pursuits. (OPM = other people’s money)

  • And the sycophants and well-connected winners who are their drug dealers and groupies.  (consultants of all sorts, who can help you find money you didn’t know existed, arrange for it’s capture and expenditure, and otherwise tell you whatever it is you want to hear, and in the doing, help you keep that nice cozy job you have in government)

  • Agenda drift, spending drift, mission drift...

    • Look at MSHA, MTA  (Maine State Housing Authority; Maine Turnpike Authority)

    • $300K plus solar heated 'affordable apts;' Turning rest stops into art exhibits

  • NNEPRA  (Northern New England Passenger Rail Authority)

    • Why was it created? (1995, MSRA Title 23, Chapter 621) King Admin

      • Passenger rail died for very good reasons (but that doesn’t matter; the laws of economics don’t apply to government)

    • Why is the “P” there? Why not just rail?  (Shown below are three exemplary passages from the defining legislation for NNEPRA; if these aren’t enough to undermine any sense of credibility on their part, you’re drinking too much Kool-Aid)

      • §8009. Reasonable fares: Fares for the passenger rail service established pursuant to this chapter must be set at reasonable levels to encourage use of this service. [1995, c. 374, §3 (NEW).]  (This says that fares should not be set based on what the service costs, but on what it takes to get people to use it.  Could you have a viable business that operates this way???)

      • §8011. Rules of construction: This chapter must be construed liberally to effectuate the purposes of this chapter. (In other words, don’t worry about the pesky little details of the law.)

      • §8111. Purpose: The Northern New England Passenger Rail Authority, as established by Title 5, section 12004-F, subsection 16, is a body both corporate and politic in the State established for the general purpose of promoting passenger rail service as set forth in subchapter 1. It is declared that the purposes of this chapter are public and that the authority must be regarded as performing a governmental function in carrying out this chapter.  (In case there was any doubt, this is a PUBLIC, GOVERNMENTAL enterprise; always remember, the government is here to help us)

    • A solution looking for a problem

      • Reducing traffic jams on 295?? Between Portland and Brunswick? Are you serious? And reducing carbon footprints???

    • Compare to buses, which already existed, especially as a way to Logan, or even points south of Boston.  (You can actually get to the airport and'/or points south on the bus, but you can’t “get there from here” on the train.)

    • Why not bring back the Stagecoach? Lower carbon footprint....

    • Trumped up ridership; trumped up economic benefit

      • Everybody heading south from Freeport and Brunswick is taking money that would have been spent locally and spending it elsewhere.

      • Do people come ON the train, or BECAUSE of the train?  (In other words, as we’ve written in the past, they were coming regardless, and simply chose the train for the trip.)

    • The 'solutions' are irreversible, and so must be justified at any price.

      • Spending whatever it takes to save money

  • Draw parallels to BDC and Brunswick Taxi

    • The same exists everywhere, no doubt

  • CEI and tax credits for Kestrel at MRRA; now not paying bills, wages, benefits; needs another $125 million to keep their head above water.

  • The most troubling part is that this has become accepted practice, and no one is concerned when you tell them about it.

  • The same way we've become immune to crime, cultural coarseness, etc...

The Takeaways:

  • Desperate economies looking for love in all the wrong places; like moneyed old maids falling prey to suave, debonair, and charming gigolos.

  • The worse the 'natural' economy, the more the 'unnatural' economy grows and perpetuates, and the more institutionalized it becomes.

  • And the more slippery the slope becomes, and the more like a death spiral.


And in case you wondered, the phone hasn’t been ringing, and it must be all those agents.  Which means, lucky for you, that you get to keep us right here in the local Cape Brunswick ‘media market.’

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