Month: February 2011

Empirical confirmation of my NOM numbers

So last night the House Judicial Committee in RI heard from 197 people. 137 were supporters of marriage equality, 60 were against marriage equality.

If you want to know, supporters are 70% while those against are 30%.

I came up with similar when I worked the voter data out using percentage who actually vote, and polls from Brown, MERI and the Providence Journal. It came out that 29% want to put it to a vote on a ballot.

When NIBYISM is perverted by Corporate Greed

We see a lot of examples of Not In My Backyard or NIMBYISM. From schools, to pot distribution centers, etc. people with few facts decide to oppose it just on the principle that it hurts their pride, feelings, etc.

We’re seeing such occur in North Kingstown, RI right now over wind turbines. You hear cries of “They’re noisy.” or “They’re dangerous!”

Granted, there is a minimal risk but North Kingstown isn’t necessarily densely populated at 603 people per square mile.

So who’s really pushing the moratorium? Think for a moment what wind turbines represent. Limitless green energy, one that a certain entity I’m about to expose cannot tolerate.

That entity, National Grid. They’re behind this, stirring the emotional pot in order to preserve their ever rising costs for electric service here in RI, or did we not notice the ocean based wind project at 25 cents a kWh? Come on.

All About the Providence Mob

Great write up on the Providence Mob starting in the early 20th Century.

My favorite quote is at the very beginning of the article:

“If ever there was a state that gleefully thumbed its nose at Prohibition, it was Rhode Island,” a reporter wrote. “Throughout the Roaring Twenties, Rhode Island was probably the most anti-Prohibition state in the union.”

Yep, the article goes on to mention RI’s 400 miles of coastline and how easy it was for rum runners to bring in the good stuff from Canada and the Caribbean.

One part goes on about Doris Copolla. Interestingly grew up near a store with the same last name and the old woman who ran it, I believe her name was in fact Doris.

It’s a fascinating read. You can see the entire series if you like.

And the interesting thing. I went to school with the sons and daughters of many of those mobsters. It’s weird seeing those names attached to mobsters.

NOM’s 80% of RI’ers is a lie

So I did some more research on it and here are the known facts:

1) That the ‘study’ was in fact paid for by NOM and commissioned by NOM Head Whore representative for Rhode Island, Christopher Plante.

2) That the firm of Quest Research headed by Prof. Victor Profughi only used a sample size of 400 people.


1) The Quest sample was drawn from the NOM mailing list because I got a call for that survey and I’m on, or was on NOM’s list.

2) That 80% of RI’ers do not in fact want this on a ballot.

The Numbers:

There are 691,778 registered voters in the state of Rhode Island. Based on Quest’s ‘research’ each 1,729 voters are covered by one survey respondent.

Voter turnout in Rhode Island for 2010 was 48.9% of the voting population. That means only 338,279 people. If we base NOM’s 80% on that the number is 270,624.

Remember that last number, it’s going to be key in what I’m about to tell you next.

I know that Marriage Equality RI, the Providence Journal, Brown University and a few other entities have studied the question of marriage equality by using surveys. And those surveys of likely voters (Remember this too!) show 62% of RI’ers want LGBT people to have marriage equality.

Here lies the discrepancy. If we take that likely voter number of 338,279 and obtain our 62% from that it is 209,733 who support marriage equality.

That leaves a remainder of 60,891 people who want to “put it on the ballot”. 29%. There’s a large difference between 80% and 29%, several standard deviations in fact.

You see, if you’re going to survey a population on an important POLITICAL question you first go to the Rhode Island Secretary of State’s Elections Division and pay $25 for a copy of the current voter database.

Then you randomly sample 1,000, or even 2,000 people from THAT list, not the NOM list. I think you’d get a result closer to that of the ProJo, Brown, and MERI than the 80% that NOM says.

It’s a lie, a damned lie. RIP Joe Palmer who once said and I quote “Numbers don’t lie but figures do!”

Glenn Beck In A Cape (PHOTO, VIDEO)

Beck has now crossed the rim of the abyss and is solidly in the deep end of crazed. How did a guy like him land a show on TV? He’s barely educated, and crazy. Wait, that seems to be a Fox News characteri¬≠stic too.

And Colbert’s take down of Bill O’Reilly’s little tides go in, tides go out speech is great, especially that comparison to St. Thomas Aquinas both having ideas from the 13th century.
Read the Article at HuffingtonPost

More Reasons why I hate RIPTA

It seems that every Friday evening, RIPTA doesn’t run for crap.

Tonight was a perfect example. I arrive in Kennedy Plaza with time to spare. I usually walk over to Exchange Terrace because you can catch the #26, #27, #28, and #92 buses and trolley from there.

But this evening Exchange Terrace to Sabin St. was a little bit heavy with traffic. So the #28 driver decided he’d take Memorial Blvd. Only problem was he got seriously stuck there. I could see him as I started walking.

Like the other night, traffic on the normal route from the office was backed up. The driver decided to detour. This seems to be a common occurrence with RITPA drivers lately. I think they’re trying to hold to the schedules but RIPTA needs to be cognizant of the fact that buses have to compete with street traffic. And over the past few years street traffic has been getting worse and worse in Providence.

This is why I really want to see streetcar service with dedicated lanes. No more fighting with traffic. And despite RIPTA’s contention that light rail doesn’t work for distances less than 10 miles, give me a break. Plot a ten mile radius around the city of Providence and you’d hit Woonsocket, North Smithfield, and Cumberland to the north, going east you’d get into Warren and Barrington even Bristol, and south would take you deep into Warwick, East Greenwich and perhaps North Kingstown.

I understand funding is hard to come by, but RIPTA needs to be creative here. I’ve already made suggestions like the 80/20 rule for federal highway monies, where 80% goes to the highway project, 20% to public transit systems. I don’t see them running with that and I wonder why?

Put it this way, there are several BILLION dollars worth of highway improvement that is becoming necessary in RI. Let’s say conservatively about $2 Billion. 20% of that would be $400,000,000 for RIPTA.

Even with their new CEO etc. I don’t think RIPTA has the vision necessary to plan a 21st century transit system in Rhode Island. They’re still stuck on buses. Buses are 20th century technology. Yes I know, rail is a 19th century technology but at least it’s grown from locomotives that could do maybe 35MPH tops to trains that book along at 200+MPH. Buses on the other hand, have gotten cosmetically better looking and the new hybrids sip gas a little less precipitously. But they still stink of diesel fuel, and still get stuck in traffic.

So get with it RIPTA.

BTW, I’m told that people inside RIPTA cannot view wordpress blogs. So I emailed this to the RIPTA CEO Charles Odimgbe.