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Bingoloid

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Everything posted by Bingoloid

  1. Bingoloid

    Fire Kevin Drumm

    LOL, thank you for the correction, ginger. I'm on my phone and autocorrect got me. I'm glad you enjoyed his class, but I have firsthand knowledge of some of what went on, and know employees who could hear it down the hall when he'd explode. By two separate accounts, he specifically screamed at a crying adjunct that they were there for tenured faculty to abuse. I never took a class with him but was present at meetings in which he would no-show, and when he did, no business could get done because he was using it to bloviate about himself and his son. Then he'd claim he was running the whole thing. It was bizarre, and happened more than five years before his retirement. He was able to go on like that for a long time. While I don't consider RateMyProfessor a big deal, his public reviews there are consistent with what had been going on internally for years: https://www.ratemyprofessors.com/ShowRatings.jsp?tid=563583 Plenty of other professors are well-rated. I'm sure he was effective at some point, but he was a great example of someone who stayed on well beyond any reasonable point of retirement, producing very little, and milking the politics. The larger point is that the leadership dysfunction at SUNY Broome enables a lot of messy situations to drag out for years.
  2. Bingoloid

    Fire Kevin Drumm

    There are a lot of good faculty at SUNY Broome, but you don't get rewarded for being good faculty. Doug Garnar was an ineffective teacher with a reputation for screaming abuse at female adjuncts until he changed colors, would barge into meetings late and hijack the agenda with personal topics, and repeatedly skip scheduled meetings with students without notice whenever he felt like riding his bike, wasting hours of their time. Textbook example of what's wrong with tenure, yet when he finally, mercifully, retired, they still gave him what amounted to a Viking funeral for being an enthusiastic kiss-ass. Now you've got the administration trying to threaten faculty layoffs while they dump money into these new admin positions, what they're going to end up with when the economic worm turns and enrollment rises again is a mix of senile sycophants who won't retire because they can't stomach spending time with their wives and inexperienced adjuncts straight out of grad school, with no capable teaching faculty at all.
  3. Bingoloid

    Bernie $ander$, the con man

    My recollection is that before running for office, Sanders used to steal electricity from his neighbors to make shitty amateur videos about socialism. For all the talk about "community organizer" not being a real job, at least Obama practiced law. On the other hand, there's a reason Sanders was popular with upstate Democrats, and that many of his supporters defected to Trump after he lost the primary. He's a crazy old man who has already lost Florida with his crazy old man ramblings, but I suspect he's a bigger threat to Trump in 2020 than Biden or Warren. I've mentioned this on other threads that the mainstream strategy had no hope of undermining Trump in the Democratic-leaning Rust Belt states he flipped. Sanders, on the other hand, may prove to be a real risk.
  4. Bingoloid

    Airport. Why?

    The obsession with coming up with a bunch of low-wage, low-skill jobs that produce less tax revenue than the employees will cost to provide services for is a serious problem. I'm not being snobby, just talking about the mathematical facts. Part of my brain dies a little every time I check local social media and see people talking about how $15 an hour is "pretty good" or who think the Amazon headquarters controversy in NYC was about a bunch of warehouse jobs. There are quite a few people living in this area who work remotely for consultancies and tech companies in functional parts of the country, contributing substantially to the tax base and spending outside money into the local economy, and I'd like to think we can hammer that trend into something, but as you said, where's the leadership? "Broome is Good" almost seems focused on telling local people where to find job listings instead of attracting new investment. The last news published on The Agency's website was a paragraph about what it's like to work...at The Agency. Before that, a release about their optimism. Meanwhile, I was on a Delta flight out of JFK a few weeks ago and there was a 25-page spread on the many wonders of investing in the Lehigh Valley and all the reasons it's a great place for your employees to live. "The Agency"'s counterpart has their equivalent campaign in front of millions of people worldwide, many of them decision-makers. Maybe we'll become eligible for Essential Air Service and we can fly on 9-seat Cessnas. That'll be fun on windy days.
  5. Bingoloid

    STROKE

    Sorry about what you went through ginger, but thanks for posting this. Strokes are terrible things and a lot of people don't realize what's involved. I'm a fairly frequent flyer and I'm bad about stretching and getting up and walking around. I do what I can to give myself the most legroom possible but it's a friendly reminder that even the youngest and most fit people need to pay attention to the stress they put their bodies through.
  6. Bingoloid

    Airport. Why?

    On one hand, business travel is at record highs and projected to keep growing. Shutting down our only commercial terminal would leave us with the nearest option an hour away, and basically be the final nail in the coffin for ever making this area economically relevant again. On the other hand, the county is losing $1.4 million a year and it's not sustainable. Knowing nothing about the technical aspects of it, I wonder what the prospects are for consolidating commercial service at CZG.
  7. He has more political experience, more influence, and more name recognition than either Akshar or Fiala, and while he's just as corrupt as Libous, he has no ties to local corruption and the good ole' boys network. No, Rod's corruption is the kind of corruption we need to get real change in Albany: INDEPENDENT corruption. As we will be the only reason he's allowed out of his cell, he'll be corrupt on our behalf. Plus, he's practically endorsed by Donald Trump: Voters have been asked a stupid question, and we should give the stupidest answer possible. Besides, it could work. We'd just transfer him to Dannemora and drive him down for legislative sessions.
  8. Rod had a strong beef because he had been under the impression the Clinton camp had guaranteed him their eventual support for the presidency. They were close. Bill had even sent him to Serbia to help Jesse Jackson negotiate a hostage release. In 2004, they put Obama up for the convention speech because Rod was already out of control and had to be sidelined. Obama ended up struggling to keep him at a distance for years because even then, everyone in politics knew what was going on and that it was just a matter of time before the arrest, but Blagojevich kept trying to find an angle to get close to the next White House. Apparently, he was still upset about it 2010 when he declared himself "blacker than Obama". If you dug through the archived history of his Wikipedia entry, you'd find some of my research for the GOP from back in the day cited about some of this. There were about a thousand different felony conspiracies they could have gone after him for, but this was just the one they ended up proving once the wiretaps were authorized. Some of his top fundraisers had already been arrested a couple of years before he was, and one of his closest associates committed suicide after his arrest, and Blagojevich went on the radio to more or less openly claim that the guy died to protect him. Like what Battisti could have been with a better law degree. At the end, I think he was probably a week away from barricading himself in his office with a bunch of tuna and a rifle. Crazy, crazy days and a crazy, crazy guy, but fun political history. The book "Golden" is mildly entertaining if you're interested in this.
  9. Only have time this morning to make this one post, but this is how Batman episodes start, with somebody breaking the Riddler out of Arkham. I used to be acquaintances with one of the top press people in the Illinois GOP, bounce ideas off each other. The last time we caught up, about five years ago, we were swapping war stories and he just got quiet and said "...Blagojevich, the way he is, when he gets out, he's going to try to make a comeback. He can't stop himself. You can count on it." I only met Rod once and can't speak to that, but he had hours and hours of face time with the guy and meant what he said. Time will tell if he was on target.
  10. Bingoloid

    Corona Virus

    I assume you're talking about the Malaysia Airlines that was shot down by guerillas over Ukraine, Ginger, which was actually mostly Dutch passengers coming from Amsterdam. Just like any other flight, many of them were business travelers. Others would have been coming home from university or visiting family. A lot of them would have only been on their way to Kuala Lumpur because it's a major hub for catching other flights, as is Amsterdam. I'm not sure what you mean about Tsarnaev. He was a Russian citizen who had jobs as a young man in America, like everybody else. Sketchy trip, but young people save up some money and go overseas all the time. Dagestan isn't exactly expensive. Chinese tourism has grown a lot in the past decade, but looking quickly, Chinese tourists spent about $257 billion overseas in 2017, American tourists $135 billion, German tourists $89 billion, and British tourists $71 billion. China is over 4x larger than the United States, 17x larger than Germany, and 21x larger than Britain, so it's nowhere near what you'd expect if their middle-class was anything like those in Western countries.
  11. Bingoloid

    Corona Virus

    ...and by the same token, just because Broome County is the way it is, it doesn't follow that that's what most of America is like. Wuhan is a little bigger than London or New York. Their GDP per capita is about a third of America's, but twice the average for China. Just like in the United States, lots of people in those cities have good jobs and disposable income. The undesirable factory and construction jobs tend to be filled by rural people who have migrated illegally, and because they have no legal right to live in the cities, they have problems getting access to basic services like healthcare and education. Basically, living illegally in a Chinese city as a factory worker is crap, but it's less crap than living legally in the Chinese countryside as a farmer or a miner, so they do it anyway. People who live in the cities legally are still poor by American standards, but better-off. In any case, we already provide almost no foreign aid money in China, less than one-tenth of 1% of our spend, and most of that looks like it's to support dissidents. There's nothing of consequence to cut off. https://explorer.usaid.gov/cd/CHN
  12. By the same token, in the unlikely event that he has to engage in official business because he's marooned somewhere with his personal vehicle, I'd be absolutely shocked if the department doesn't have the reimbursement policies worked out. LEOs in my family were only encouraged to run errands on either end of a shift if they had a marked take-home car, for visibility reasons, assuming the officer had some gear and was equipped to respond. It's a good way to get patrol cars to banks, gas stations, grocery stores, etc., off their usual route. It was definitely not intended as a personal convenience perk so that brass could drive cool SUVs they couldn't afford on their own dime to parties, especially political fundraisers. If this isn't a violation, it should be.
  13. I'm not disagreeing with that part, but Harder's just a woodchuck who never understood how to act in the first place. He was distributing cash prizes out of the evidence locker to friends and family a long time ago just because he thought he could. Debbie Preston had the same problem. Goofy chain-smoking yokel who got herself in a bind because she thought she could do whatever she wanted even way back in Conklin, unaware that just because she was raised ignorant trash didn't mean everybody else was, too. These are people who would barely be able to figure out how to earn a living at all if it weren't for public employment. (Is Preston still working at the Price Chopper?) Same class of bottom-feeders who birthed Akshar so he could run for office to banjo music. It's a shame that the Valley of Opportunity, which inspired hard-working people to travel halfway around the world to try to build something better for themselves in America, is in the hands of a bunch of lazy and ignorant bumpkins who couldn't imagine it. The working- and middle-class homeowners who put their foot down about Battisti need to speak up and take the county back from this crooked old hick, too.
  14. He can drive? Terrifying.
  15. Bingoloid

    Binghamton University receives $60M donation to build new baseball stadium

    I'm not an expert on the tax rules at this level, but Stenger kept calling it a "donor family". Doesn't sound like one person's bequest. Since it's anonymous, it can't be a family foundation trying to meet their annual minimum disbursement. Those are open records. My guess is somebody's heirs inherited a donor-advised fund. You make contributions to those in any year for the tax deduction, but then you can't take the money out. You have no choice but to donate it eventually. Tens of billions get socked away in those every year. My guess is some alumnus had happy memories of playing ball at BU or was simply a massive baseball fan, had a successful career that involved a lot of stock options, and his heirs ran out of ideas. Very possibly just a small portion of whatever they're doing to dispose of the fund.
  16. https://wbng.com/2020/02/11/state-government-auditing-city-of-binghamton-over-sewage-plant/ https://wnbf.com/nys-launches-audit-of-binghamton-jc-sewage-treatment-project/ "The city of Binghamton did not respond to a request for comment." The previous audit, in 2015, concluded that costs were already out of line, leading local officials to complain that the state was trying to create a "a false and unfavorable impression" of them and "kick ’em while they’re down". (Actual quote.) https://www.pressconnects.com/story/news/2015/12/22/audit-sewage-plants-costs-out-line-service/77764808/ At that time, the plant was supposed to be completed by 2017. To borrow a phrase from the Emperor of Japan after the atomic bombs dropped, the situation has developed not necessarily to Broome County's advantage.
  17. Bingoloid

    Binghamton University receives $60M donation to build new baseball stadium

    I was looking at the map and thought the same thing. The South Side would be hopping for new businesses if it was convenient to hockey fans all winter, baseball fans all summer, and other Arena crowds year-round. I have fond memories of NYSEG Stadium but that neighborhood is a rough spot to ask people to gather.
  18. Not correct. DEC was able to begin imposing a fine only after the board failed to complete the project on the agreed-upon deadline, in 2017. This is a nearly-$300,000,000 project and the $15,000 monthly fines amount to about 1% of that. At one point, the plant was so far behind schedule that it was in danger of being fined as much as $37,500 per day. It's not unreasonable that local government be basically competent and move at a reasonable pace to minimize the dumping of human feces directly into the river like some third-world - literal - shit hole. This is water upstaters drink and that contaminates homes and streets when it rises. It's more like we have to keep some slugs on the payroll for as long as possible to keep the kickbacks to local politicians on track. I seem to recall Councilman Livingston pointing out one employee bragging on Facebook about how the construction was so bad that he was planning on getting paid twice - once to do it and once to fix it. You're certainly right that they're hoping people "forget". That's why Rich David was so desperate to have Livingston's original video pulled. In fact, I can't find any reporting about the DEC fines until this mess was exposed in 2019. They're doing everything in their power to bury their gross mismanagement and how hard it's going to hit ratepayers. Some interesting quotes from an article at that time: https://spectrumlocalnews.com/nys/binghamton/news/2019/07/26/sewage-treatment-project-delays-could-cost-more-money "Nobody's taking ownership; nobody's culpable for the problems. So I don't see it as anybody but the rate payer funding it and maybe years down the road, some legal settlement where a portion comes back that they split with the lawyers." - Joint Sewage Plant Business Manager Charles Pearsall "It's not just the rate payers of Binghamton and Johnson City, it's the rate payers of Vestal, the rate payers of the town of Union, the rate payers of Port Dickinson, it's rate payers of all municipal users." - Binghamton Councilman Dan Livington "[not available for comment]" - Binghamton Mayor Rich David "[not available for comment]" - Project Manager
  19. Bingoloid

    Binghamton University receives $60M donation to build new baseball stadium

    You know what? This is a really interesting idea that could have been a win for everyone involved. NYSEG Stadium is pushing thirty. If the terms of the donation allowed it, a shared-use facility close to campus would probably be a brilliant public-private partnership that would keep baseball in our community for a long time and not only bring more local baseball fans to Bearcats games, but also give BU parents something to do during campus visits that would put money back into the community. Of course, there's almost no real regional coordination so getting everybody together to think ahead like that would have been too much to ask. I wonder if "The Agency" even knew or if they found out about the announcement in the news like everybody else? As for it being a "waste", it seems like an odd choice, but let's remember that it's a private donor. They didn't owe the Binghamton region a dime, and their tax money probably already subsidizes this area.
  20. If you know a homeowner struggling with keeping an older home warm (or cool), this might be worth looking into: https://go.sealed.com/NYSEG/1/ I haven't dug too deep into it, but NYSEG sent me a mailer and it looked like it could be a good strategy for some people. The idea is that if you own a single-family home, you might be eligible for up to $6,500 in up-front financing for insulation, draft sealing, water heater replacements, etc., which is then repaid against the savings in your bill so that you don't have to go out-of-pocket.
  21. Bingoloid

    Kirk Douglas

    Forgotten smash hit, 1958's "The Vikings". All-star cast led by Douglas having fun taking a simple popcorn flick as far over-the-top as they could. "Look at him, how he hastens to his death! He can't wait to die!"
  22. Bingoloid

    Coronavirus - Hype? Or certain Death? 💀

    Starting a heavy international business travel schedule this week. If you don't hear back from me by the end of March, please make contributions to the Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation in lieu of flowers.
  23. Bingoloid

    Coronavirus in Broome County?

    '75, have you read that patent?
  24. Bingoloid

    Coronavirus in Broome County?

    Johns Hopkins has a regularly-updated infographic map that is kind of cool, too: https://gisanddata.maps.arcgis.com/apps/opsdashboard/index.html#/bda7594740fd40299423467b48e9ecf6
  25. Bingoloid

    Coronavirus in Broome County?

    Not to be alarmist, but I've been trying to follow this and I would encourage others to take it seriously, especially folks who are over 60. It doesn't seem to be fizzling out as easily as past coronavirus outbreaks and there is genuine alarm from epidemiologists, not just reporters and politicians. It's not clear how deadly it is, but it does seem to be leaving many more people needing medical help than the flu. If you want simple things you can do to help yourself: - It's not clear how long coronavirus survives on clean surfaces without a host. SARS and MERS were thought to be good for a few hours once they'd dried out, 24 hours isn't an unreasonable guess. Just keep potentially cross-contaminated things separate overnight. Leave your shoes at the door. Wash your hands before you eat and as soon as you get in, before you start touching things in your home. - Many hand sanitizers and wipes are not effective against viruses, and the ones that are may only work quickly on viruses under ideal (clean, dry) conditions. Use them in addition to, not instead of, washing things, even if you can't use soap. If your medical practitioners try to skip washing in favor of sanitizers, it's OK to ask them to please wash, too. - Do your bathroom business at home. Lidless toilets and hand dryers in public bathrooms throw other peoples' material all over the room, including right into your face while you're standing there washing your hands. - If you're inclined to get masks, N95 or better are the kind that should help. There's no point buying the expensive non-disposable kind with filter cartridges, since you want a clean one each time. Nearly everywhere appears to be selling out of these as soon as they come in, so there's no harm grabbing a 10-pack wherever you find them. They're good to have anyway in case you ever have to deal with smoke damage, mold, etc., in your home. Nobody needs to go crazy about this, but little things reduce your odds of being the vector for the pneumonia that puts your favorite uncle in the hospital for the last time. It's flu season anyway.
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