Welcome to the Finger Lakes! Our theme song:

In a town this size, there's no place to hide
Everywhere you go, you meet someone you know...
In a smokey bar, in the backseat of your car
In your own little house, someone's sure to find you out
What you do and what you think
What you eat and what you drink...

(Kieran Kane)

Monday, September 24, 2012

Are your friends talking about gas prices?

Since the media is ignoring Obama's energy crisis, it's up to you to start the conversation.

Imagine life without a farm bill

The Washington Post, of all sources, questions the urgency behind Congress's 10 trillion dollar farm bill.   
Why farmers, alone among all businessmen, should be entitled to a nearly guaranteed income is especially inexplicable when total U.S. farm equity is projected to $2.3 trillion this year, up $500 billion since 2008, according to the Agriculture Department.
Here at South of 5 and 20 Industries, LLC, we support a guaranteed annual income for bloggers, and will endorse and support any politician who makes that vital cause a national priority.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Rose of Cimarron

From The Outlaw Trail concert, HDNet, 2008.   We recommend you order the complete 2-hour concert on DVD and CD using the convenient box appearing  on the right side of this page.

Lady Writer

Just the way that her hair fell down around her face... Dire Straits.

Friday, September 14, 2012

Shinagawa supports Obamacare tax increases

Voters in the Southern Tier's 29th Congressional District will soon choose between incumbent Republican Tom Reed and SEIU-endorsed former Cornell University student/current Tompkins County Legislator Nathan Shinagawa.  Reed is opposed to Obamacare, and particularly the federal takeover of healthcare's massive tax increases.  Shinagawa, on the other hand, wants more of the same.
As representatives headed back to Washington, D.C. this week, U.S. Rep. Tom Reed, R-Corning, said for the sake of small businesses, the need for overall repeal of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) remains.
On the other hand, Nate Shinagawa of Ithaca, his Democratic opponent in the Congressional race said the act will help small businesses. The tax credit small businesses in New York state get under the act will increase in 2014, he said...
Shinagawa noted the Affordable Care Act doesn’t require small businesses with under 50 employees to get health insurance for their employees. He said he would like more businesses provide healthcare insurance to their employees.
Tom Reed grew up in Corning and is a graduate of Horseheads Central School.  Nathan Shinagwa, son of a tenured professor, touted his urban Los Angeles upbringing when he last ran for office in leftist-dominated Tompkins County.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Top Democrat apparently not struggling to pay her bills

In addition to owning a secret vacation home in New Hampshire, we've learned that Florida congresswoman and DNC honcho Debbie Wassserman Schultz drives a gas guzzling Corvette (seen here parked next to her hubby's gas guzzling luxury SUV).

Lashing out

I’ve no doubt that if Seattle or Boston or Manhattan goes up in a bright white flash there will be those who blame it all on Bush. We squandered the world’s good will. We threw away the opportunity to atone, and lashed out. Really? You want to see lashing out? Imagine Kabul and Mecca and Baghdad and Tehran on 9/14 crowned with mushroom clouds: that’s lashing out. Imagine the President in the National Cathedral castigating Islam instead of sitting next to an Imam who's giving a homily. Mosques burned, oil fields occupied, smart bombs slamming into Syrian palaces. We could have gone full Roman on anyone we wanted, but we didn’t. And we won’t.

Which is why this war will be long.
 James Lileks, 9/11/03.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Buerkle on Welch Allyn layoffs: Obamacare medical tax hurts

Congresswoman Ann Marie Buerkle has issued the following statement today in response to news reports about impending job cuts from  Skaneateles-based company Welch Allyn. The company announced that they would be entering a restructuring period that would lead to job losses in the range of 10% of the company’s work force. Welch Allyn employs 2,750 associates. Welch Allyns was badly damaged by the new tax increases contained in the Affordable Care Act, specifically the 2.3% excise tax on medical devices contained within the Affordable Care Act.

“Welch Allyn is an excellent employer and a vital asset to our community. Today’s announcement is a devastating blow to our economy in Upstate New York,”
said Buerkle. “Washington should be creating a reasonable business environment so that employers can operate and do business here without going overseas. Dan Maffei’s vote to raise taxes on Welch Allyn and other local employers is nothing short of irresponsible.”

Friday, September 7, 2012

Protesters pressure administration on gas prices

Protester in "New York" t-shirt with effigy of politician - Andy Cuomo?

While Andy Cuomo was at the DNC in Florida, fighting to secure his opportunity to run against President Romney in 2016 by calling for higher taxes,  Finger Lakes gasoline prices crossed the four dollar/gallon threshold.  

Not allowing the administration to ignore the economy-crushing energy costs, student protestors took to the streets.
Student and youth groups affiliated to various political parties continued their protest against the recent price hike in petroleum products on Thursday by enforcing one-hour long chakka jam (road blockade) in front of different colleges and academic institutions across the country.
Fortunately for New York's second generation Democrat governor, the chakka jam was held in Nepal, not Watkins Glen.  It appears Upstate New Yorkers, blinded by Andy's media induced celebrity, would rather not talk about record high fuel prices under Cuomo II, not to mention ever-increasing taxes and years of 8 percent unemployment.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Trumansburg's Barangus closes

Joan Baez at Barangus, 2009

Barangus, the Trumansburg landmark known for its black bull on the roof, has closed after 50 years.  

We hear that many T-burg locals are concerned by a recent rash of business closings.  We are also told that many of those same folks proudly display "Obama 2012" bumper stickers.  Coincidence?

Canandaigua taxpayers give superintendent $150K to go away

Former Canandaigua Academy

As Finger Lakes students return to school this week, the Daily Messenger uncovers details of  the surprise departure of Canandaigua school superintendent Don Raw.  The $190,000/year administrator announced his retirement as of September 1st.  Unlike many of his fellow Upstate retirees, however, Raw will not have to face his golden years in poverty. 
While Raw’s contract was originally through 2015, he will receive a payment upon his exit. According to the memorandum of agreement between Raw and the school district, Raw will be paid $130,000 “in return for (his) retirement.” A payment of $100,000 was to be made Sept. 1, and the additional $30,000 is scheduled to be paid Jan. 1.
In addition to the $130K payout, Raw will also abscond with another $31,450 in area residents' hard-earned cash.
In exchange for not participating in the health insurance coverage, the district agreed to provide a buyout of the coverage for a lump sum payment of $9,600.
In addition to the $130,000 payout, Raw, who was paid $190,000 a year, will also be paid for 28.3 days of accrued and unused vacation leave, and 145.67 days of unused sick leave. The sick days will be paid at a rate of $150 day, according to the agreement.
In May, the Messenger took an in-depth look at local superintendent compensation.  One often overlooked factor that facilitates outrageous superintendent  compensation is that our local school boards have the ability to fund themselves by collecting taxes at gunpoint.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Organic fad meets reality

White House organic garden

Organic foods: trendy, politically correct, more expensive, and no nutritional advantage.
Yet "there isn't much difference between organic and conventional foods, if you're an adult and making a decision based solely on your health," said Dena Bravata, senior author of the paper and a physician at Stanford's Center for Health Policy.
The data don't fit well with consumers' stated motivations for buying organic foods. A 2010 Nielsen study found that 76% bought them believing they are healthier, 53% because they allowed them to avoid pesticides and other toxins, 51% because they are more nutritious and 49% because organic farming is better for the environment.