Sunday, 6 April 2008

The Septic Woes

So this is how things work in the real world.

You have a small town of 300 folks....about four miles from a major town (30,000 residents). The small town existed on a simple plan of personal septic tanks. This is 1965. By 1980....the 300 folks have grown to 1500 folks. You still have personal septic tanks...although you have city water to every household now. By 2000....the 1500 folks have grown to 3000...and septic tanks are still the norm, and cable has been extended out to every soul in the town. By 2008, you have almost 3500 folks and still run the septic tank game.

At some point...you start to discuss dumping the septic tanks and running city sewage lines.....to a city sewage plant. The nearby town of 30,000 folks....offers up an extension and you can hook up to their standing plant....for a fee. The fee....based on other state models is very fair. The city council of a mayor and four council members....won't agree to such a matter. This disagreement goes on for months. The public is looking at the matter and its a no-brainer. The plant already exist and the entire plan could be accomplished in eighteen months. Every member of the town believes that mayor and council are idiots.

So what is happening here?

Well....there is special funding from the state and federal level that a community can tap into and haul back to their community. There are bonds and special taxes you can assess onto the public. And at the end of the day....alot of money could fall into your hands. You as the city council....can hire whoever you want....and possibly get some bribes back....say $15k each for helping out a "friend" of the town council get the contract.

The total cost of a plant, pipes and house hook-ups? WELL....we could be talking about a $3 million dollar scheme....especially if you build the plant for 200 percent capacity and assume the city will double in twenty years. So the head guy of the scheme, and the city council....all have a vested interest. And hooking up to the big-city operation....isn't profitable.

So what happens in Killen, Alabama? Oh....I forgot to mention the town's name....didn't I? And the big city? Florence, Alabama. Well....things were in a pattern to move toward a private contract and a private plant....up until this past month....when a number of residents started showing up for the town council meetings and demanding hook-up to Florence's sewer system. The council had stood firm up until this week....when one member dropped out of agreement and is standing with the residents of the town. by next week....when the next meeting is held....there might be a second guy dropping. If that happens....then the private operation will be questionable.

Its a funny game to watch small towns grow over the past thirty years....and get into the utilities business. Most end up hiring some local guy....who screws up everything....and ends up leaving town with thousands of dollars missing and unaccounted. Over in Lexington, Alabama....the dimwits there wanted a better source for city water and contracted out to a guy who had a really deep well. The city ran the pipe out to his place and pumped the water back...over four miles in length. The thing is....the dimwit running the city water operation....didn't ever pay the correct amount on the water piped. So the property owner who had bills to pay...and millions of water pumped off his place.....ended up in bankruptcy court....all because of the town's incompetent management.

In the town where I grew up....to remain nameless....the dimwits there hired some local guy to run the water pipe hook-ups for the town and his wife managed the books. After a few years....the books were in a terrible mess....and some folks questioned how accurate they were and if the wife had stolen money. There was some family involvement....and someone fixed all the issues up....so the wife never got to jail. This is one of those topics you don't bring up in church today because some folks think the law was broke and some folks think that fixing problems thus makes them go away.

So when you decide to pack up and move to the rural part of America....to a town of 1,000 residents....prepare yourself for corruption. You might not grasp how dim this game really is....but its a game to steal from you quietly and slowly.

Just Another Thing to Worry About

The mighty British empire stood up this week, and passed a law forbidding sale and distribution of samurai swords. To be truthful....the cops had seen more than just a handful of folks....mostly of Asian descent....who actually carried the swords around in public and used them as weapons...since guns have been outlawed. Its funny the method of slowly stomping out each weapon of choice as one proceeds along.

The UK was the place in the mid 1990's where someone came up with statistics to suggest Kangaroo bars....those fancy chrome add-on bars that you'd typically see in the outback of Australia....were being common on UK SUVs....and responsible for deaths and destruction in the UK. For several years....the radio stations....the public safety sector...and lots of worry "warts" spoke up about the threat of the Roo bars. So far nothing has been done.

The worry "warts" even wrote a nice article for Mother Jones monthly back around 2000....telling of the horrible threat of Roo bars in America.

I sat and pondered the worry "warts" coming to America and speaking out on the samurai swords and attempting to stamp out the swords here. Personally....I wouldn't care....as long as machetes are still a option and the better weapon of choice (especially against Zombies). I even pondered just how many samurai swords might be in Bama....and thinking other than WW II vets who might have taken one as war booty....no one would buy a overpriced item like this....preferring instead the $12 machete that you can buy down at Wal-Mart. Somehow....in the reality of things....it just doesn't seem to be something for me to worry about.

Course, these German idiots in the past month passed a new law that forbids blades on a leatherman or multi tools....longer than 4.5 inches. I read that and quickly pulled out my trusty multi tool from my belt (the one I've owned for seven years now)....and quickly noted its barely 3.7 inches long on the blade. So I guess I'm safe. The Germans claimed that too many Russian punks were walking around with long knives and this new law would crimp their style. I like how Germans think about the implications....they simply take the knife away from you if it violates the length law....no jail time....but they then asses a $10,000 fine. You don't pay? Well...the cops here bring out a court guy and then remove $10,000 worth of items from your house. They can remove just about anything except the car and the kitchen items (fridge or stove). So a guy could lose his 40-inch tv and be weeping over carrying that stupid knife around in public.

Charlton Heston & the Harvard Speech

http://www.americanrhetoric.com/speeches/charltonhestonculturalwar.htm

There are lots of Charlton Heston speeches that one might read....but the one given at Harvard concerning "cultural war" is probably the only five-star speech ever given. I clipped barely a paragraph of this speech. If you'd like more....just click on the link above to read the entire text.

"I remember my son when he was five, explaining to his kindergarten class what his father did for a living. "My Daddy," he said, "pretends to be people." There have been quite a few of them. Prophets from the Old and New Testaments, a couple of Christian saints, generals of various nationalities and different centuries, several kings, three American presidents, a French cardinal and two geniuses, including Michelangelo. If you want the ceiling re-painted I'll do my best. There always seem to be a lot of different fellows up here. I'm never sure which one of them gets to talk. Right now, I guess I'm the guy."

The damning points of the speech come much later....when he slams the social elite who pretend to be "right"....and you are left wondering how much of the speech was Charlton and how much was Moses himself. For anyone with doubt about their moral compass....a reading of the text might help orientate yourself to north...and settle your mind on right and wrong.