Hillary Clinton
Hillary Clinton to NJ March 29
Registration for non-Rutgers personnel opens TUES, March 20. Click for how to attend.
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NJ statehouse
Gov. Murphy presented his first state budget last week.
Bill Orr’s latest series digs into the issues, recommendations, and political climate
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The president is wrong. Let us not harden our schools. Instead, let us soften the world. – Kauffman
You should read this piece by Ronen Kauffman. So should Donald Trump.
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Zombie Apocalypse
In the midst of blaring, daily headlines of an unstable White House
We can’t miss the consequences of Trump’s predatory moves on healthcare. There’s trouble ahead.
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Tosser of the Day: Bob Ingle

In lieu of Wanker of the Day already being taken by Atrios, I think Tosser (a synonymous term) of the Day is an apt title for our new almost daily feature. Plus if you imagine it being said with a strong British accent it trully is an interchangeable term.

Today’s Tosser is Bob Ingle. Who has a blog over at the Assbury (sic on purpose) Park Press, in which he states the following:

Tax Freedom Day is the date that marks the end of the time since Jan. 1 that all of your income goes for federal, state and local taxes. It’s April 26 most places in 2006 but in New Jersey it is May 6. That’s an example of how much more expensive government is here. What about New Jersey government is worth the extra days all your income goes to the state treasury in Trenton?

Someone tell Bob Ingle, that the reason NJ’s tax freedom day is a bit later than everyone elses has little to do with how expensive government is in this fair state, and has much more to do with the fact that NJ is top 2 (with Connecticut) in all categories of Per Capita Income, and in fact leads the league in Median (that’s average Bob) Household income.

So it takes us longer to be free of taxes because we are on average in the highest tax brackets.


Below the fold I award yesterday’s Tosser of the Day award.

Bush’s new Press Secretary a FOX news alum?

Tom Wilson’s days may be numbered now that the GOP and FOX News have officially merged
Media Matters reposts:

Fox News’ Tony Snow reportedly set to take White House press secretary post.

News reports that Tony Snow is set to accept the White House offer to replace outgoing press secretary Scott McClellan hit the airwaves last night.

Media Matters for America has documented numerous false and misleading claims advanced by Snow in his role as Fox News Radio host, Fox News guest host and commentator:

Snow falsely asserted that former ambassador Joseph C. Wilson IV said his wife, Valerie Plame, “wasn’t covert for six years” before she was exposed as a CIA operative by syndicated columnist Robert Novak.

  * Snow put forward numerous falsehoods to argue that “[e]volutionary theory, like ID [intelligent design], isn’t verifiable or testable. It’s pure hypothesis.”

  * Snow claimed that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg is the “most liberal justice in American history,” despite evidence to the contrary.

  * Snow peddled the baseless Republican National Committee talking point that 2004 presidential candidate Sen. John Kerry (D-MA) had blamed U.S. troops for the explosives looted from the Al Qaqaa military installation following the invasion of Iraq. Snow said, “[T]he Kerry campaign is not criticizing the president here. They’re criticizing our troops.”

  * Following President Bush’s lead, Snow distorted Kerry’s stated desire to reduce terrorism to a “horrible nuisance.” Snow claimed Kerry had “called terrorists a nuisance.”

  * Snow backed Swift Boat Veterans for Truth’s attacks on Kerry, falsely claiming, “[T]here has been no documentary contradiction of the Swift Boat stuff.”

  * Snow falsely defended Bush from probing questions regarding his National Guard service.

After reading this I need a nap.  Or a bong hit.

Menendez Introduces Credit Card “Bill of Rights”

From 1990 to 2004, credit card companies have aggressively increased the number of solicitations sent to prospective customers by 500% (to over 5.2 billion in 2004). Though there are certainly other factors at play, it’s not surprising that the average American household’s credit card debt has nearly trippled from $3,200 in 1992 to $9,300 in 2004. A study by the Jump$tart Coalition found that many college administrators believe more students drop out due to credit card debt than academic problems. And according to one study, consumers pay nearly $90 billion per year in fees and interest payments – that’s almost enough for a down payment on another pre-emptive war!

Add to that the fact that consumer savings was negative last year for the first time since the Great Depression and you’ve got one really big red problem. Yesterday, our very own Senator Menendez took the lead on tackling this issue by introducing the Credit Card “Bill of Rights.” The legislation is actually two bills: the Protection of Young Consumers Act and the Credit Card Reform Act.

“When a family sends their son or daughter off to college, they should only have to worry about their report card, not their credit report,” said Menendez. To that end, the Protection of Young Consumers Act would ban credit card companies from soliciting to consumers under 21 unless they explicitly “opt-in” and request such offers. The bill would also “establish a financial literacy and education program in elementary and secondary schools to help prepare young people to be financially responsible consumers.”

Judge’s findings smack UMDNJ dean and State Sen. Wayne Bryant

Fifty dollars doesn’t go very far nowadays. If you’re lucky, $50 might fill up your Hummer.  But that’s another story….

Outgoing dean at University Medicine and Dentistry of NJ, R. Michael Gallager of Haddonfield might have some tips about how to make your fifty dollar holler:
Courier Post:

Gallagher directed subordinates to exaggerate the revenues of a clinic he ran by nearly $374,000 between 2002 and 2005, the report said.  Adjustments to the profit-and-loss statement of the University Headache Center enabled Gallagher to qualify for $15,000 bonuses each year, according to the report, released by federal monitor Judge Herbert J. Stern.The report said Gallagher billed the school for more than $200,000 worth of questionable expenses, including more than $40,600 for meals at the Tavistock Country Club, $18,255 at Caffe Aldo Lamberti in Cherry Hill and more than $30,000 at the Union League of Philadelphia.
The bills from Cafe Aldo Lamberti included a $50 glass of wine and a $50 glass of scotch

News Roundup for Tuesday, April 25, 2006

The news roundup for Tuesday, April 25, 2006 is here.  All the snark that’s fit to print.

  • Major layoffs and reassignments are on the agenda for the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey.  (Many should be delighted that major indictments aren’t being handed out.)
  • Middlesex County’s Department of Weights and Measures is putting the county’s gas stations on notice that they’ll be checking to ensure that there is not gouging or cheating.  I guess someone in Middlesex County government is as unhappy with gas prices as, well, everyone else.
  • A report on harassment within the New Jersey State Police has finally been issued and, among other things, it debunks the astonishingly adolescent-sounding “Lords of Discipline” myth.  According to the myth, harassment of new troopers was carried out by a shadowy group within the State Police that called itself “The Lords of Discipline”.  There is no truth to the rumor that they would go about in capes, cowls, and tights and that they had a secret bat signal.
  • The New Jersey Supreme Court has ruled that Exxon can be sued by the husband of Eleanor Olvo, who died in 2001 from a rare form of cancer that came from exposure to her husband’s asbestos-contaminatied work clothes.
  • Comet Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 (I did not make up that name) will be visible over New Jersey for a few weeks.  The comet is actually in fragments, but is visible with small telescopes.
  • Nineteen year-old Harvard University student Kaavya Viswanathan has admitted to plagiarizing (aka committing theft) some passages in what is generously called “her” novel, “How Opal Mehta Got Kissed, Got Wild, and Got a Life”.
  • Senators Lautenberg and Menendez have asked the National Park Service to designate Paterson’s Great Falls Historic District a National Park site.  Your correspondent was at the dedication of the Great Falls as a historic district by President Gerald Ford in, I believe it was, 1976.
  • Abate raises $12,000 [or possibly $9137] in first quarter (with POLL!)

    According to a filing with the FEC, Camille Abate’s campaign raised $12,004 for the first quarter of 2006. There were no prior expectations of a competitive quarter from Abate, a late entry to the Fifth District race who filed with the FEC in March.

    Democrat Paul Aronsohn, finished the quarter with a $125,000 lead over Abate in cash-on-hand. The presumed Republican opponent, Scott Garrett, had a lackluster quarter but currently leads Aronsohn by $240,000 in available funds.

    The next quarterly reports will be filed in early July, at which point Democrats and Republicans will already have chosen their nominees.

    Monday, April 24, 2006 News Roundup

  • Voters in the 13th district may be feeling a bit of déjà vu, as the candidates could be identical to the congressional race in 1986. Yes, I’m talking about Albio Sires and John Guarini, second cousin to Sires’ first opponant, Frank J. Guarini. Sires, then a Republican, ran against Guarini for Congress in 1986. Guarini won then, but now things are a bit different…starting with their party affiliation. John Guarini is a Republican and Sires is running as a Democrat. But nothing is definite yet, Sires still has to face a strong primary challenge from Joe Vas for the Democratic nomination.
  • A report slated to be released today exposes thousands of wasted dollars at UMDNJ. To add to the troubles the medical school has faced in the recent months, the report depicts (among other monetary dishonesties) how the financial records were falsified to show that the university’s headache center was making a profit, which enabled the former dean of the School of Osteopathic Medicine to receive an annual bonus of $15,000.
  • Roughly a year after a federal judge removed the leaders of the corrupt Local 734 of the Laborers’ International Union of North America, the Rochelle Park based local union’s pension plan is on the verge of collapsing. This comes after a former executive hired friends and family members to work frivolous part-time jobs at exorbitant salaries, in addition to questions being posed about the organization’s connections to organized crime.
  • Daniel Ellsberg, who’s known primarily for leaking the “Pentagon Papers” to the New York Times in 1971, is calling for full disclosure by the Bush Administration on the Iraq War. He did this while addressing an audience composed primarily of members of the Coalition for Peace Action at the Princeton Theological Seminary last evening.
  • Governor Corzine hits the 100-Days in Office mark this week. The first 100 days are often the most crucial in determining how any elected official will lead their constituency. The Governor appears to be embracing his new role humbly and not striving to constantly be in the limelight, like some of his predecessors have done.
  • NJ Gas Prices

    GasBuddy.com now features a Gas Price Temperature map which visually shows the average cost of unleaded gas around the country. It shouldn’t be a surprise to most of us that gas tends to be cheaper in NJ than in neighboring states, particularly New York. This map displays the price by zip code, though the information comes from volunteers who submit gas prices, so this is not scientifically accurate data. You can click the map to see a larger version.