Monday’s Quick Hits: Agent Orange, Betting, Ballots, & Apologize

Hey folks – I am running late today due to medical appointments. Don’t worry – I am still healthy enough to continue to pick on Republicans and Democrats!

Today’s quick hits deal with these issues:

  • Harmless to Humans
  • Place Your Bets
  • June 5 Primary
  • One More Thing – Apologize!

Harmless to Humans…

I happened to catch this article in Sunday’s Great Falls Tribune 50 years ago section. The following article appeared in the Tribune during the week of May 13, 1968:

WASHINGTON — The Air Force is preparing to dump 10 million gallons of vegetation and crop killing poison over South Vietnam in the year beginning this July, officials say. The move represents a broadening of the chemical warfare effort to strip jungle cover from, and deny food to, enemy troops operating throughout the South. And it may result in a shortage of lawn and garden weed killers used by American homeowners. Chemical producers last year were reported strapped just to keep up with defense orders. The Pentagon says the chemicals are harmless to humans and animal life and do not make the soil sterile for future growth.

“The Pentagon says the chemicals are harmless to humans…”

Sure they are.

Thousands of people were exposed to these chemicals including many military personnel. It is a tough on-going fight for veterans and their dependents to get compensated and receive medical care for their exposure to Agent Orange. The battle continues.

I happened to see a movie about a veteran’s exposure to Agent Orange. It was titled, “Unnatural Causes” and starred John Ritter. It showed how hard it is to fight the VA and the fight to get help for Agent Orange exposure.

Place Your Bets…

The U.S. Supreme Court struck down a federal law that bars gambling on football, basketball, baseball and other sports in most states, giving states the go-ahead to legalize betting on sports. (AP)

In my opinion, that is the right decision.

States can now make their own decision to allow gambling. With the revenue that can be gained by taxing it, I expect we’ll see many states approve it.

June 5 Primary:

Hot diggety dog – we received our primary ballots in the mail on Saturday!

I like to wait until it’s closer to Election Day before voting. You never know when a candidate might cold cock a reporter or do something else crazy!

There are interesting races on both the Republican and Democrat ballots. Since we can only pick one ballot (Party) to vote for in the primary, this will be tough for many. For example in Cascade County, there’s a three-way primary for Sheriff on the Democrat ticket that is drawing a lot of attention. We also have primaries in the U.S. House on the Democrat side and in the U.S. Senate on the Republican side.

Who do you like in the primary battles?

One More Thing…

White House aide Kelly Sadler reportedly told her fellow White House staffers that U.S. Senator John McCain’s opposition to the Administration’s nominee for CIA director didn’t matter because “he’s dying anyway.”

Sadler reportedly called McCain’s daughter, Meghan, and apologized. She also reportedly said she would offer a public apology. We have not seen it yet – so the story continues.

I would have fired Kelly Sadler on the spot. After that, the head of the communications department would have been required to issue an official apology to Senator McCain and his family. That would have put the story to bed, but instead we are still talking about it on Monday.

Sometimes you just need to do what is right.

##END##

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6 Comments

  1. Thousands of people exposed to Agent Orange? More like millions. It was used everywhere, so pretty much all the troops and, of course, the entire Vietnamese population. And you’re right. It has been essentially impossible to get any compensation for it. I finally managed to get a tiny bit of compensation this year after leaving Vietnam in ‘72. I was lucky. Most guys died long before getting any compensation. That really pisses me off. Vietnam vets got screwed all the way around. The vets that came later seem to all get compensated for something.

  2. I foresee the MTA, the lodging industry, the tribes, and the owners of Town Pump and their subsidiary casinos being at the head of line to legalize gambling. Just re-arrange a few machines or bump out a small addition and add the betting cages. And they’ll sell it as, “jobs, jobs, jobs!”.

    • I forgot the funny part of this. Rightwing scolds that are anti-gambling AND big supporters of states rights are up against their internal conflict over which they believe in more strongly.

      • Doug – don’t forget you gotta pay the mortgage! JmB

      • 2 legislative sessions ago there was a bill brought forward to allow Montanans to play fantasy sports online. It was crushed by the lobbyists for the Tavern Association so fast it was crazy. When it comes to internal conflict it appears that the side with deep pockets wins.

      • Rick – I remember that. The Tavern Association is pretty strong in the legislature. I would have liked to play “Draft Kings” and other games. I imagine someone in Montana will challenge that now. I think they could win.
        Since moving here about 30 years ago, I’ve found Montana way behind in gambling and in liquor control. It’s archaic.
        Thanks, -JmB


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