Hello, friends and enemies – Common sense and independent commentary are back!
My last column was posted on November 21, but I have been watching the happenings, and here are a few things that Caught My Eye:
- Great Falls Public Safety Levy Spin
- Vaccines for Military Personnel
- Brittney Griner
- Football and Fútbol
- Personal News
GREAT FALLS PUBLIC SAFETY LEVY SPIN:
Back on November 18, The Electric reported about the proposals for the Great Falls Public Safety Levy. Three categories are being proposed: Good, Better, and Best.
The Electric reported that “The best package of additional public safety resources is an estimated $33 million $36 million annual levy…”
It was then reported by The Electric:
Melissa Kinzler, city finance director, said that if the commissioners ask for the $35 million public safety levy they’d be doubling the city budget and that would increase taxes to residential property owners by 191 percent.
A few weeks later, City Commissioner Rick Tryon posted a column on his local blog with the headline, “Debunking The Bunk: No, GF Taxes Aren’t Going Up 191%.”
In the blog, he writes, “If the “best” amount were to be put to voters via a public safety levy the increase to local property taxes could be as high as 191%.
So, they could go up 191% – just like was reported.
He then tries to put a political spin on it. He failed miserably.
Then Tryon closes with, “The “they’re raising our taxes 191%” is a false alarm. The City is not doing that, rest assured.”
I hope not. Any commissioner who votes for that much of a tax increase should be run out of town.
If you run into one of the commissioners or the mayor, ask them if they are for Good or Better or Best. Stand back when you do, or you may find your wallet or purse missing as this group seems to think we are made of money.
VACCINES FOR MILITARY PERSONNEL:
I am disappointed in Congress for trying to do away with the COVID vaccine mandate for service members.
I saw a note from U.S. Senator Steve Daines that, in part, said:
I’ve been working hard in the United States Senate to protect Montana servicemembers from overreaching COVID-19 vaccine mandates imposed by President Biden’s administration.
I’m glad to announce that this week, I secured a provision in the defense bill to repeal the mandate for servicemembers!
Several members of congress used the same type of statements as Daines did. He was not the chief architect of the repeal. He was along for the ride.
I was in the U.S. Air Force for about 12 years and took every vaccine they offered. I was tasked with being required to go anywhere in the world at a moment’s notice, so I needed all the vaccines.
The military is not a country club or a sorority or fraternity. When you sign your name on the line, you may have to do things and go places you don’t want. This repeal is a slippery slope.
I happened to be up early when the news broke that WNBA star Brittney Griner was being released in a prisoner swap with Russia.
I am happy she was released.
Many on the right condemned this move citing the man she was swapped for, arms dealer Viktor Bout, and that the swap did not include former Marine Paul Whelan. Some on the right used Griner’s activism as grounds for not liking the swap.
Here’s the bottom line. Many on the right, especially the MAGA crowd, did not like the swap because Griner is a lesbian, and she is black.
FOOTBALL AND FÚTBOL:
For your viewing pleasure…
-The Montana State Bobcats (12-1) are in the FCS Playoff semifinals. This Saturday they play South Dakota State (12-1) in Brookings, South Dakota. The game is on ESPN2. It starts at 2:00 p.m. Montana time.
-There are three NFL games on Saturday, and all are on the NFL Network.
Colts v. Vikings at 11:00
Ravens v. Browns at 2:30
Dolphins v. Bills at 6:15
All times are Montana time.
-The final of the FIFA World Cup airs Sunday at 8:00 a.m. Montana time. It’s Argentina versus France. It airs on the Fox Network.
-The college football bowl season kicks off Friday (today). There are 43 bowl games! Click HERE for the schedule.
As I mentioned in my November 10, 2022, column, I will be posting columns intermittently. I had surgery on November 23 and was in the hospital for four days with six weeks of recovery at home. Yes, I spent Thanksgiving in the hospital and enjoyed my liquid diet!
I am doing well. Thanks to everyone who sent me notes of encouragement and for the prayers.
For those wondering, the surgery was for “complicated diverticulitis.” The surgeon, with the help of a robot, removed about 12 inches of my colon and stitched the good parts back together. I have five incisions in my stomach that look like I was in a knife fight. I am healing nicely.
Chicks dig scars, right?
There was some *pain* involved – the tube they inserted in my abdomen to drain the fluid was very painful to remove. I said the F-word to the nurse when he pulled it out. The catheter removal was no treat, either. Probably the thing I hated most was in August when they inserted a hose down my nose into my stomach to drain it so I could have a quick colonoscopy. That freaking hurt.
*In no way am I saying this pain compares to childbirth…
I have been spending time watching football, and the World Cup, monitoring current events, and sleeping!
I am also waiting for the bills to roll in that the insurance did not cover. It’s pretty shitty to have insurance and still be stuck with enormous bills.
Is this a great country or what?