Monthly Archives: April 2010

Will Fudrucker and I attend the same protest? Nah, you’re on your own here, Frankie

"Here you go, Greenwich!"

There’s a fundraiser scheduled Sunday at 27 Meadow Lane (off Pecksland) for Joe Lieberman and Harry Reid and apparently both Demmerkrats and Tea Party types plan to protest. Go to it, boys, I’m staying home.  I figure anyone rich enough to cough up a few thousand to attend this soiree ought to be smart enough to know they are paying the hangman for his rope and if they aren’t, well good luck to them, the morons.

By the way – the Greenwich Time calls the site of the fund raiser a $4 million home. Assessment is just $3, and that’s probably due for a readjustment downward in this year’s reassessment.

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Former Harvard Swim Team Captain Blumenthal: “Now I can be a crook!”

Blumenthal – “I didn’t take PAC money as Attorney General, but now that I’ll be peddling my ass as a senator, why shouldn’t I cash in?” Whatever, Dick – how those swim lessons going?

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Am I missing something here?

Greenwich residents “outraged” over 4-hour interruption of power when tree is taken down. Yeah, yeah, yeah, but check this out: sounds like one of those inconvenienced residents stopped the tree from being taken down months ago – you get what you ask for, no?

On Dec. 23, Ellen Brennan-Galvin — Bill Galvin’s wife — rushed over and confronted a work crew that was trimming the tree.

Lauren Bedell, the assistant head of finance, operations and technology at Greenwich Academy at the time, said the tree was a safety hazard and that it was decided it should be removed to avoid damage to any other properties.

She said the tree has two large visible cankers, stress cracks and cavities in the main trunk area, and considerable sap rot.

But after Brennan-Galvin’s complaint, the school decided to notify the town of its plans, Bedell said.

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Breaking news from 1991

Obama interviews Thomas for Supreme Court vacancy.

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For just less than the price of a starter home

Sotheby’s is auctioning the original “A Day in the Life” by Lennon McCartney. Estimated price, $500,000- $700,000. I don’t have the scratch but otherwise, I’d be tempted.

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Break up the banks?

That seems to be the plan. I hope the Wall Streeters who bribed Chris Dodd for all these years are learning a lesson: you can’t pay a crook enough money to keep him bought, or honest.

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Did Dick Fuld lie under oath?

One whistleblower says so. The government seems eager to put someone, anyone from Wall Street behind bars, so this might be an opportunity, but this cynic thinks not.

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Fun story of James Wilkinson, “the most notorious traitor you never heard of”

Trusted by our founding fathers, he betrayed them all.

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Eliminating tenure for public school teachers

NPR reports on a growing trend. I never understood why they were entitled to such security in the first place.

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Market activity

Forty-four single family homes are pending or under contract this month , only five of which asked more than $5 million), compared to 25 in April last year, and 74 in April 2007.

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It’s a crazy market, but some things are selling

65 Dandy Drive

I just recently mentioned this house on an acre of land and asking $1.599. I questioned whether someone would pay that much when new construction down the street (on a smaller lot) had just sold for $1.8.

But it’s reported as pending today, so someone answered that question.

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Another sad story, but an opportunity

16 Suburban Avenue

 

This nifty little “Leave it to Beaver” house on Suburban Avenue in Cos Cob came up for sale in 2005 at $775,000. The current owners bid it up to $816,500 and added close to $200,000 in renovations. Now it’s for sale at $750,000. 

I hate stories like this – good people meeting with misfortune doesn’t lighten my day. But, it’s a great value, and a wonderful house.

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Price it, sell it

47 Winthrop Drive

This was a really pretty, renovated house on a great street in Riverside. It came on last year at $2.795 million and went nowhere. It was relisted two weeks ago at $2.395 and, I hear, it had four buyers vying for it. Some of that, of course, is that our market is a little stronger today than it was last year, but much of it has to do with its price.

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ObamaCare – we the insured are f**ked

Constitutional law professor Randy Barnett says Congress cannot impose mandatory insurance purchases. And I agree, but if this provision is struck down, as it will be, the requirement that insurance companies take on all people with pre-existing conditions will cause our own insurance costs to soar – people will now not buy insurance until, say, they are diagnosed with cancer, then they’ll join the pool. Who pays? You and I.

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (aka ObamaCare) includes what it calls an “individual responsibility requirement” that all persons buy health insurance from a private company. Congress justified this mandate under its power to regulate commerce among the several states: “The individual responsibility requirement provided for in this section,” the law says, “. . . is commercial and economic in nature, and substantially affects interstate commerce, as a result of the effects described in paragraph (2).” Paragraph (2) then begins: “The requirement regulates activity that is commercial and economic in nature: economic and financial decisions about how and when health care is paid for, and when health insurance is purchased.”

In this way, the statute speciously tries to convert inactivity into the “activity” of making a “decision.” By this reasoning, your “decision” not to take a job, not to sell your house, or not to buy a Chevrolet is an “activity that is commercial and economic in nature” that can be mandated by Congress.

It is true that the Supreme Court has interpreted the Commerce Clause broadly enough to reach wholly intrastate economic “activity” that substantially affects interstate commerce. But the Court has never upheld a requirement that individuals who are doing nothing must engage in economic activity by entering into a contractual relationship with a private company. Such a claim of power is literally unprecedented.

Since this Commerce Clause language was first proposed in the Senate last December, Democratic legislators and law professors alike breezily dismissed any constitutional objections as preposterous. After the bill was enacted, critics branded lawsuits by state attorneys general challenging the insurance mandate as frivolous. Yet, unable to produce a single example of Congress using its commerce power this way, the defenders of the personal mandate began to shift grounds.

On March 21, the same day the House approved the Senate version of the legislation, the staff of the Joint Committee on Taxation released a 157-page “technical explanation” of the bill. The word “commerce” appeared nowhere. Instead, the personal mandate is dubbed an “Excise Tax on Individuals Without Essential Health Benefits Coverage.” But while the enacted bill does impose excise taxes on “high cost,” employer-sponsored insurance plans and “indoor tanning services,” the statute never describes the regulatory “penalty” it imposes for violating the mandate as an “excise tax.” It is expressly called a “penalty.”

This shift won’t work. The Supreme Court will not allow staffers and lawyers to change the statutory cards that Congress already dealt when it adopted the Senate language.

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True repentance

It was just a week or so ago that a Byram drug peddler begged for mercy from the court:

“Honorable judge, I am already punished in every aspect of my life,” wrote George. “I am kindly requesting you not to punish me more and my family and save my life to lead a very pure and honest life.”

Now comes news that his pure and honest life is yet to begin.

The new developments in the case came on April 23 when an undercover FBI agent entered a pharmacy in Bridgeport posing as a customer and observed George, “receive, examine, fill, package and deliver the prescriptions,” according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office. Officials said George’s license expired earlier this year and he never renewed it. Prosecutors also determined George was collecting unemployment in New Jersey while holding the pharmacy job in Bridgeport.

Prosecutors declined to pursue new charges against George.

George’s initial arrest stems from fraudulent claims and payments he made to the Medicaid and Medicareprograms between June 2006 and September 2008. In some instances, George submitted claims for prescriptions he did not fill, according to court records.

George and his lawyer have asked a judge to sentence him to home detention and probation, saying he is emotionally fragile and regretful for his actions.

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“Illegal immigrants plan to leave over Ariz. law”

From HotAir

The AP headline writer seems to find this surprising – I imagine Arizona is delighted.

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Good Lord, why was he wearing a microphone?

Prime Minister caught blasting meddlesome old woman. Funny, but it may cost him the election. People, don’t don microphones!

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Demmerkrats found on Mars!

NASA says evidence of pond scum found on red planet.

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So what’s wrong with that?

Alabama candidate vows to issue drivers’ exams only in English, and is attacked. What the hey? I’ve lived in Europe – they certainly didn’t put up traffic signs for English speakers.

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When the tide goes out …

Blaine Rollins, chump

Denver Ponzi scheme exposed

One such prominent investor was former Janus Capital money manager Blaine Rollins who once oversaw $11 billion in the Janus Fund. Mr. Rollins not only invested in Mr. Mueller’s fund, but he also worked for the business, becoming the director of research last year, according to his attorney, Dan Shea of Hogan & Hartson LLP.

Mr. Shea said that Mr. Rollins had no knowledge of the alleged fraud, adding that his client also lost money. “Blaine invested a substantial amount of money and never made a withdrawal,” Mr. Shea said. “He still to this day does not know what Mueller did.”

The scandal reached a bizarre climax last Thursday, when Denver police talked Mr. Mueller down after he threatened to jump to his death from his office building. Earlier in the day, he had emailed apologies to several of his clients. In his emails, he admitted that documents were falsified and he claimed stress and frustration had overcome him.

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