The Locker Room

May 23, 2005

Re: Another Type of Welfare, Really

Posted by Jeff A. Taylor at 7:46 PM

Paul, having been subject to Maryland grocery stores for 15 years -- it is hard to convey to Carolinians what that means.

Aside from the cost was the total lack of any interest in consumer satisfaction. They knew they had no real competition and acted that way.

Upon moving back to Charlotte I recall how shocked I was that a cashier at a Teeter, upon learning I could find no fresh jalapenos (and John knows how dire that is) immediately jumped on the PA and had both front-desk and produce department people scrambling to find jalapenos. I'm not kidding, there were five people trying to get me a five cent jalapeno. One guy busted up to the check-out with a whole box of peppers apologizing all the way, which forced to me to buy at least 50 cents worth of jalapenos out of shame.

I blame Wal-Mart.

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Re: Hey ...

Posted by Jon Sanders at 4:42 PM

Along those lines, Karen, maybe the DPI could institute a government math question. To wit:

You're the head of a state agency, and you've requested an increase in your agency's budget from $986 bazillion to $1.5 gazillion. The governor's budget recommendations would have your agency receive $1.49 gazillion. How many people in North Carolina will you say is hurt by this cut?

A. Current agency employees and their immediate families
B. The number of employees you might have hired with that extra hundred bazillion bucks
C. Think of the children!
D. These draconian cuts affect all of us, not just now but in the future

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Hockey a Growth Opportunity?

Posted by Donna Martinez at 4:30 PM

This guy's job must have been pretty bad if he's leaving to pursue a career! Check out this AP story that's posted to the WPTF-AM web site. It begins this way:

"Orlando Magic general manager and chief operating officer John Weisbrod resigned Monday after 14 months on the job to pursue opportunities in hockey.

You may recall that the NHL once played in Raleigh. Is my family the only one that misses it?

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The Procrustean bed of global warming

Posted by Jon Sanders at 3:10 PM

A while back in a column I wrote, I used the theory of global warming as an example of

the unfalsifiable theory: the Procrustean bed, named after that unpleasant fellow of legend, Procrustes, whose joy it was to waylay travelers and tie them to his bed, which was truly one-size-fits-all. If the traveler were too short, he was stretched till he "fit," and if he were too tall, his dangling appendages were lopped off (an apt description of what the proponents of an unfalsifiable theory do to facts).

My reason for selecting global warming as an example was because "global warming theorists' readily [accept] as proof of their theory any proposed meteorological event, including global cooling." Here's a very recent example of that tendency. Not only do melting polar ice caps show evidence of global warming, but also, according to the Palm Beach Post: Antarctica ice cap growing, another sign of warming

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Re: Hey...

Posted by Dr. Karen Y. Palasek at 2:58 PM


Just to be sure we understand your football problem point, would you try the following and let us know what you get?

Take an empty one-quart measure, add 28 ounces of water, then pour off 4 ounces into a cake batter bowl.
Next, add 10 liquid ounces of water to the one quart measure, plus 2 liquid ounces of cooking oil. Mix well.
Pour 7 ounces of the mixture out of your quart container into a separate bowl, to be used later.

Now--How much liquid do you have in your one quart measuring container?
a. none.
b. one quart.
c. 29 ounces.
d. huh?

For a thinking person, you see, it does make a difference.
Don't forget the paper towels.

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And the Check's in the Mail

Posted by Donna Martinez at 2:35 PM

From Darlene Waddell, executive director of the Global TransPark, as quoted in Friday's Kinston Free Press:

"We are on the road to self-sufficiency."

We've heard similar claims for years, of course. This failed project is a classic example of good intentions trumping reality. And in this case, reality bites bigtime.

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Another Type of Welfare, Really

Posted by Paul Chesser at 2:15 PM

Various governments and supermarket unions are working hard to keep Wal-Mart out of the Washington, D.C. area:

Giant Foods, Safeway and Shoppers Food control 55 percent of the local grocery market, and their union is relying on its strong political ties and sympathetic shoppers to stop Wal-Mart's expansion. At stake, the union says, is the future of more than 20,000 supermarket jobs that offer a middle-class lifestyle to the region's unskilled workers.

Yeah, we can't have people actually earning their way to "a middle-class lifestyle."

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Phone vs. Cable vs. Satellite vs.....

Posted by Paul Chesser at 12:52 AM

Competition: A beautiful thing.

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No, not kidding

Posted by Hal Young at 12:52 AM

WRAL reports that court-ordered restitution can sometimes come in very, very small increments:

When Jim Finn's car was vandalized in 2001, he did not expect a headache four years later. He got a $3.60 check for court-ordered restitution. At that rate, Finn will get the entire $173.45 he is owed by 2007.

"I figured I was going to get a check. It turns out I've gotten many checks -- many, tiny little checks," Finn said. "I would love my money back."

My single tiny little question is this: how much does it cost the taxpayers to produce and mail the check, then process it once it's cashed? Because we're going to do it 49 times for this individual, assuming no interest accrues. And there are ten other people dividing up the perp's $150 restitution payment.

There's got to be a better way on small amounts like this. The Legislature is working on it but any thing which starts out this wordy tends to get more convoluted.

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Catsup vs. Vinegar Bottle Battle

Posted by Paul Chesser at 09:54 AM

The Washington Post today profiles North Carolina's East vs. West barbecue battle. Its two protagonists: The News & Observer's Dennis Rogers and author Jerry Bledsoe.

Of course, no victor emerged.

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