Re-elect Defazio, He brings home the pork!

By Steve Norman Albany Democrat-Herald

Albany and Millersburg officials Monday gave Congressman Peter DeFazio a driving tour of the cities’ joint water project and pitched him on the importance of finding federal grant money to help with the cost. “This open canal is a unique problem and warrants quick attention,” DeFazio said as he stood on a narrow footbridge over the Albany-Santiam Canal near 34th Avenue and Pacific Boulevard.

Quick study that DeFazio. I guess his extensive background in water management has given him great insight into the problem. What exactly IS the problem Petey?

Gathered there were Millersburg Mayor Clayton Wood and city planner Donald Driscoll, Albany City Engineer Diane Dennis, Councilman Doug Killin and Linda Macpherson, a representative CH2M-Hill, the consulting firm helping the cities with their project. Albany and Millersburg officials hope DeFazio can help the cities obtain grants to fund some portion of their joint $39 million water project, lowering rates to consumers and reducing dependence on canal water.

Oh, I see. We’re going to spend $39 million dollars but no one is going to have to pay for it. In fact, We’re going to be able to charge less money. How exactly does that work?

The water project — including a joint water intake on the Santiam River and a treatment plant on Scravel Hill — will pump about 12 million gallons a day to both cities. The city representatives showed DeFazio sites of the project as well as the existing canal and treatment plant. The project would give Albany and Millersburg a second water source, in addition to the canal. In addition to looking for help paying for the joint water project, Albany is looking for grants to replace miles of leaking iron pipe, which was installed prior to 1955 and loses 25 percent of all the water the Albany plant produces, said Dennis, the engineer.

But I thought we were’nt going to have to pay for it. We can decrease charges for water in fact

DeFazio said that a bill he sponsored — the Water Quality Financing Act of 2002 — was designed to reduce the annual $24 billion dollar gap between the cost of needed water infrastructure improvements nationwide and available funding.

Oh? There’s a Federal Water Bureau? Why haven’t I heard of it before? When did it come into existance?

The bill would earmark $20 billion over five years for the Clean Water Revolving Fund, DeFazio said. This would make available more money, which DeFazio said would encourage the states to make grants available for municipalities.

I’m not sure I understand this statement. Earmark $20 Billion for who? I guess it would make available $20 billion more but what are the strings? (other than voting for DeFazio) If DeFazio is going to send the money from Washington to Albany, where does the State come in? One thing I’m sure of..None of this spending will endanger the Social Security Trust Fund. You can rest assured on that. Only Republican spending endangers the Social Security Trust Fund.

The bill, HR 3930, cleared the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee March 20 but is stalled waiting for Republican leaders to take it up, DeFazio said. The sticking point is a “Davis-Bacon” provision, which says that not less than the locally prevailing wage be paid to workers employed in federal contract construction.

This is also known as the “great Union campaign contribution kickback” provision.

DeFazio, D-4th District, has been in the House since 1987. He is unopposed for renomination in the May 21 primary. The sole candidate for the Republican nomination is former state Rep. Liz VanLeeuwen of the Halsey area.

And if you don’t vote for DeFazio, you don’t get the money. Hey, don’t get the wrong idea, this is nothing like vote buying. Vote buying is when you promise money and programs during an elect…um, never mind.

According to the joint water project plan proposed by Albany and Millersburg, the $39 million cost will be paid for by a 45 percent increase in water fees and an increase in system development charges, Councilman Killin said.

Wait a minute. Didn’t you say at the beginning of the article that water rates would be lowered?

“I dread the possibility that within the next five years the sewer and water rate could be more than $80 a month for the average household,” Killin said. “Any help from the federal government could lessen that a lot.”

Wait! What happened to the decreased water rates?

Millersburg has already secured a $6 million state loan to pay for its portion of the joint water project. But both cities will share in any grants that materialize, Killin said. DeFazio, the senior Democrat on the Water Resources and Environment Subcommittee, said money spent on infrastructure will “put people back to work.

Oh goody! Just wait. The unemployment around here is pretty high but with the water project we’re looking at, uhh, how many jobs Petey? 100? 200? or maybe 1 or 2. Just wondering Petey.

Palistinians renege on deal. (What a shock.)

Israel says it wants six Palestinians incarcerated with U.S. and British supervision: four militants convicted last week of the killing of Israeli Tourism Minister Rehavaam Zeevi in October 2001; Ahmed Saadat, the leader of the group to which the four belong, the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine; and Fuad Shubeiki — an official of the Palestinian Authority linked by Israel to the arms shipment from Iran that Israel had seized earlier this year aboard the Karine A.

The Palestinians, for their part, insist that only the four convicted by the hastily assembled court in Arafat’s compound are covered by the deal. Three were convicted of murdering Zeevi, and one of assisting them. “Shubeiki and Saadat were not involved in killing Zeevi; they are part of the political Palestinian leadership and they should not remain behind bars,” said Palestinian Information Minister Yasser Abed Rabbo early Tuesday.

Announcing the deal Sunday, U.S. President George W. Bush was clear that all six of the men wanted by Israel — who have been in Arafat’s compound throughout the siege — are covered by the agreement.

As noted in Instapundit, Uthant has a plan.

Perhaps the international community wouldn’t be so stumped by the conflict had it bothered to ask Uthant for advice. [It’s not like we weren’t Secretary General of the United Nations for ten years for fuck’s sake.]

So, the Palistinian gunmen holed up in the Bethlehem church are common thieves.

Is anyone surprised?

Three Armenian monks, who had been held hostage by the Palestinian gunmen inside the Bethlehem’s Church of the Nativity, managed to flee the church area via a side gate yesterday morning. They immediately thanked the soldiers for rescuing them. They told army officers the gunmen had stolen gold and other property, including crucifixes and prayer books, and had caused damage.

In Most of the world this would be considered child abuse. But these are Palistinians and thus cannot be held to the same standards as civilized humans.

All they are teaching gives peace no chance / At a few Gaza schools, children get an education in hate

Hassain then quizzes the class about a previous, more serious lesson. “Who are the Jews?” she asks. The children know the answer by heart: “The enemy!” they reply in unison. “And what should we do to them?” Hassain asks in a voice that is as casual as when she discussed chickens and eggs. “Kill them!” the children cry out.

New Evidence in Killings of Anti-Chávez Protesters

But more than two weeks after 17 people died and another 100 were wounded in the incident, the worst case of political violence in Venezuela in a decade, new evidence has emerged that seems to show that the men on the bridge were exchanging gunfire with other armed men.

Sure They were. Strangely enough, the causualties seem to be limited to anti-Chavez protestors and no one except the pro-Chavez gunmen could see these mysterious other armed men who were firing on them. I’m sure that now that Chavez is back in power his investigators will track down the other gunmen who will turn out to be members of the opposition and will probably confess to being paid by the CIA to do it.

Whites Always Guilty, says researcher

Study Examines Stereotypes of Light, Dark-Skinned Blacks

Among black males, 55 percent listed “poor” as a characteristic of dark-skinned blacks; 27.5 percent listed it for light-skinned blacks. Among white males, 45.2 percent used “poor” for dark-skinned blacks, compared with 28.6 percent for light-skinned blacks.

The differences in that category were even more dramatic for women.

Among black women, 67.5 percent listed “poor” for dark-skinned blacks, as opposed to 20 percent for light-skinned blacks. For white women, 50 percent associated “poor” with dark-skinned blacks and 14.3 percent for light-skinned blacks.

The study breaks new ground because it addresses skin tone bias among whites, said Kendrick Brown, a psychology professor at Macalester College in St. Paul, Minn., who is researching the same topic.