Month: February 2011

Senators Reed and Whitehouse try to obtain $2.5 Billion of the money FL refused.

Florida refused several tens of billions of dollars for commuter rail projects. But our beloved Senators for Rhode Island are battling to get $2.5 billion of that.

With $2.5 Billion we could build a streetcar SYSTEM again. Here’s what I commented on the Projo 7/7 news blog:

I’ve been a constant critic of the routes chosen for the Providence Core Connector aka Streetcar line.

The proposed route pretty much benefits Brown University and RI Hospital.

Now RIPTA let slip a few years ago that the busiest routs on RIPTA are:

11, 99, 27, 28.

The 11 route runs from nearly the Cranston line to Kennedy plaza then changes to the 99 which runs North Main to either Main St. or Pawtucket Ave. into Pawtucket.

27 and 28 both serve all of Broadway in Providence and separate into Manton Ave and Hartford Ave in Olneyville. Both ultimately run near or into Johnston.

This tells me that a line should be built up through Pawtucket, up North Main and through downtown to ultimately head back our Broad St. and into Cranston.

Why? Diesel buses, even if they’re hybrid are now extremely expensive to operate. Fuel costs alone are killing RIPTA slowly.

Streetcars run on electricity and per mile they’re more efficient than buses.

And the ridiculous assertion by RIPTA that light rail wouldn’t work in RI is ludicrous!

Providence to Warwick is about 10 miles. Providence to Woonsocket through Lincoln and Cumberland and even Central Falls if you really wanted to be inclusive.

The one problem with streetcars is that they don’t know how to budget for them. But if you built the lines on existing bus lines, you could at least get a good ridership estimate. And in fact every car driver I’ve spoken to abhors buses. But they said if we had a decent rail system they’d probably use it.

So get this… UPS calls

UPS called me this evening. They apologized profusely for the shipping screw up. They tried saying that because it’s ground service it can be delivered at any time of day.

I countered with “If that’s so, how can you offer signature required?” And more to the point I related the “End of Day” story. I told the person who called that UPS would be better off saying “At any time between 7AM and 7PM on date.”

She said they will take that under consideration. She also said my blog post on this is being shared all around UPS in order to improve service.

So, when a business does you wrong, write a blog post, send it to their PR folks and let it happen.

Legislator Responses so far

I’ve been emailing every RI house member every day with links and stories I find regarding marriage equality from the many blogs I read, and the occasional link to my blog.

Thus far I’ve heard from three legislators, two by email, one by phone.

Doreen Costa, the newest Tea Party darling in RI emailed me thanking me for the info.

Karen MacBeth emailed and she supports marriage equality.

Spencer Dickinson called, he doesn’t support marriage equality.

UPS – you still suck

So I ordered myself a Yaesu VX-7RB. It’s quad band handheld amateur radio receiver. The price was right.

Well the company I ordered it from ships via UPS. You know, Shit Wrapped in Chiffon UPS.

When I checked the status of the package yesterday it was clearly marked “Expected end of business day”. Now I know what that is, I’ve asked UPS this question before. They told me 5PM to 7PM.

When I got home just before 6PM I see their famous little InfoNotice. Yeah UPS, fuck you and your InfoNotice.

So I log on to track the package and I see this:

UPS After business hours eh?
UPS After business hours eh?

Notice the highlighted section – they tried to deliver at 1:24PM. And today there was nobody home at 1:24PM.

I called UPS. I told them I know the truck is still out there, get it back here and deliver the fucking package. Sorry, can’t do that. Can we re-direct to my office, oh, there’ll be a charge for that.

If I ever order from this company again I’ll be sure to call it in and tell them don’t ship UPS, use USPS.

A converstion with some legislators

Apparently my emails have struck a nerve with some legislators, in particular Karen MacBeth and Spencer Dickinson.

The former responded to my emails, the latter called me.

The former supports marriage equality while the latter does not.

My conversation with Dickinson was interesting. He does not support marriage equality but he would like to see it as a referendum. I spent about a half hour talking to him, explaining that a referendum wouldn’t be the way to go since the likes of NOM have millions to spend on media campaigns.

Even Dickinson mentioned he’s been getting more negative calls about marriage equality than supportive. I mentioned that he probably received the MERI postcards but his opponent got them and he tried to write it off as people who would have voted for his opponent until I reminded him that when people filled out those cards, they were then district matched by MERI and forwarded on to the legislator.

Dickinson also brought up Victor Profughi. I told him about the sampling for NOM and Dickinson was surprised. He said for about $2K I could sponsor a poll with Profughi. I’ll be damned if I’m gonna pay that hack any money. I could just setup a robodialer and randomly pull from the Voter database. It’d cost less and I’d get a more reliable answer.

Another thing Dickinson was surprised when I told him I was not directly affiliated with any group. Granted I’ve supported Marriage Equality RI but they don’t dictate my actions at all. I told him I’m just tired of the same old crap all the time and it’s time we vote this one way or the other.

I hate to say this here but Dickinson is around my fathers age and if there’s one thing I know about that age group, it’s the self righteousness in the face of logic.

I posted about the conversation on Facebook and got a reply from a friend who’d run against Dickinson and who is considering doing it again. I told him to go for it.

More on National Grid Heating Rates

So there was this post in which I learned that National Grid charged more on your customer charge and per therm if you HEATED with natural gas.

Couple of weeks back I got a little thing in the mail from National Grid. It was a survey asking what appliances I had hooked up to the natural gas service. Didn’t have any language that indicated I had to tell them so I guess they’ll never know.

I suppose the uptick in gas usage might have given them a clue, but I could be using it for flame sculpture for all they know.

Yes, fuck you National Grid. Fuck you until the cows come home. Fuck you until you’re broken into a million tiny little pieces.

Fox News just makes stuff up

This is unbelievable.

Of course we’ve probably all known for some time that Fox News was nothing more than a propaganda mouthpiece for the conservatives. It is precisely why I want them taken off the air and Rupert Murdoch thrown into the slammer along with news division director Roger Ailes.

While we’re at it, let me tell you that news in general isn’t really news but carefully chosen stories.

But Fox is the worst of all of them.