Monday, November 27, 2006


The PrissKids had four days off from school. Two days for Thanksgiving, followed by a weekend at home. It was Sunday night. The peanut butter supply was holding but the bread and turkey had been exhausted. A grocery run seemed in order, especially in view of the SIX INCHES OF SNOW on my car with more still falling. If school were canceled, snacks would be critical.

Normally my car would have been in a snow-free state, protected by the garage. But rain showers had dampened the heavy wooden door. The uneven distribution of weight caused one of its metal hinges to rip in half. So the PrissMobile had been parked outside for a few days. While the ground was only slushy, the car was caked with icing.

Enlisting some child labor, some brooms, and a spatula, we cleaned off the car. This had to be done twice, because more fell as we worked. Getting out of the driveway went fine, and the street was still navigable. As expected, only a few blocks away at a lower elevation, the roads weren't icy yet.

Returning with provisions was just slightly hazardous. Thick flakes were falling and there was a distinct lack of traction as I made the ascent. Following the example of neighbors with similarly steep driveways, I parked at the curb. Unlike them, I layered the windshield with newspaper. It keeps the ice from sticking.

School wasn't canceled, they went and came back. Now it's snowing again and the temperature is dropping. But there's nothing to worry about. If they have tomorrow off we can make cocoa and microwave popcorn and play outside. And there's always internet.

Friday, November 10, 2006

Limit of statutations

The argument against term limits is that they are undemocratic. They eliminate ability to elect those people who are experienced, and therefore effective, who you might choose to represent your State's interests.

In the 1990s, the Repubs advocated term limits as a method to get rid of senior Dems in Congress. They pretended it was a nonpartisan issue, its purpose was to infuse the government with fresh new non specified thinking. Rush Limberger et al. could be heard shouting: Throw the bums out.

Many States passed local term limits laws. Being represented by newbies put those States at a disadvantage in the committee system where Bills are formulated. In some cases (Nethercutt) a candidate pledged long and loudly to serve only one term and then "return to the private sector." Yet when asked to run again, if no law prevented it, they stayed on and became the new entrenched fogies.

We limit presidents to two terms because of our country's anti-monarchical origins, and some States limit Governors' terms as well. But don't be fooled, any seemingly innocent musing about term limits that you hear is purely partisan.