We got our property tax bill today, along with our ballots for the upcoming election. There are a slew of new taxes and bond measures on the ballot for this election, and I'm voting No on all of them.
Measure 97, pushed by the public employee unions, would tax "big corporations" on gross sales; driving up the cost of everything from food and medicines to utilities and appliances. It will add public employee "jobs" at the cost of 30,000 private-sector jobs, and it'll cost each and every resident - according to independent analysts - an extra $600 per year.
Metro wants another bond measure for "greenspaces", although they lack any accountability.
City of Portland wants around $300 million to build "affordable housing" - which is not a core government function.
And the list goes on. Taken all together, the bond measures alone total over a billion dollars, all tacked onto property taxes.
The renters will vote for them, as usual - so it's no wonder Portland "leaders" want to add more rentals all through the city.
We are so looking forward to peddling our house and getting out of Portland.
All things must eventually die, and this country is unfortunately well on its way; corruption has become rampant.
Pantsuit, Ferret-top - what's the difference?
In the Obama era, we have seen the remorseless merging of the party and the state - in the IRS, in the Justice Department and elsewhere.
And much the same is happening in Oregon, so it seems that no matter where you look - save, perhaps, Idaho, where the state legislature can review and reject "regulations" emanating from the faceless bureaucrats in the various state agencies - we're pretty much toast.
Introducing: the manual transmission. What's a poor carjacker to do? He can't drive that thing!
Admittedly, I'm kind of out-of-touch with the automotive world, so I had no idea as to how ubiquitous the automatic transmission is today until I went to the dealership a couple of years ago. They had at least a hundred new cars on the lot, and all of them were automatics. I had to go hunting around to find a stick-shift! I've driven rentals with automatic transmissions, but I hate them: going down the mountains and hills around here, you end up riding the brakes. I prefer to downshift. But then, I grew up with stick-shifts.
My wife, apparently like our hapless wannabe carjacker, has never driven anything but an automatic. She's never been able to drive one of my cars or trucks. Amazing.
They didn't exactly recompile the firewall code to get to Podesta's emails, or those at DNC. They just phished around, and the Democratics were dumb enough to bite.
So it wasn't actually hacking; the Dumbocrats involved simply clicked the box to change their passwords without bothering to verify the source of the "Google" warning. Probably because doing that would require thought. Democratics are big on reacting, they're big on emotion, but not so much on thought -that involves effort.
The technique is known as spear-phishing, and commonly used to gain access to user accounts. And these ignorant dummies are supposed to run the country? Well, into the ground, perhaps.
Fortunately, there are only 90 more days to put up with this failed U.S. pResident. The Philippines president has renounced association with the USA during a trip to China, where he once again referred to Barry as a "son of a whore".
Which, quite frankly, many may agree with. Be that as it may, Rocky Duterte dissed the USA profusely while cozying up to China. Maybe Pantsuit needs to break out her Reset button again. It worked so well with Russia.
In any case, it seems to be another example of Democratics' great grasp of foreign policy. I've lost track of how many allies they've managed to alienate.
Portland would rezone nearly two-thirds of its existing single-family neighborhoods to increase residential density, under a proposal to be considered by the Planning and Sustainability Commission next Tuesday.
The proposed Housing Opportunity Overlay Zone covers most of the city except the David Douglas School District in East Portland, because the district doesn't have enough capacity for the additional students such new housing would generate.
I'd be willing to bet that it doesn't touch tony Eastmoreland, the neighborhood where Streetcar Charlie lives. He's dense enough as it is.
If the cops show up with a search warrant, well, you expect they can search the premises. But showing up with a warrant that says every single person on a certain property has to unlock their fingerprint-reading phones and present them for search, too? That’s… pretty surprising. And yet, it turns out, earlier this year, that’s what happened in California.
What happened, Forbes spotted, is this: the Justice Department wanted a warrant to search a property in California. So far, so good.
But that warrant included language authorizing investigators to “depress the fingerprints and thumbprints of every person who is located at the SUBJECT PREMISES during the execution of the search and who is reasonably believed by law enforcement to be the user of a fingerprint sensor-enabled device that is located at the SUBJECT PREMISES and falls within the scope of the warrant.”
So much for the Fourth Amendment; if you're in an apartment building or an employee at a place of business, the feds at DOJ figure that they can just waltz in and force everybody present to turn over their phones for inspection, even though the individuals themselves may not be suspects in any criminal activity. They believe that they can search all content on every device on the premises; presumably in the hope that they'll find something incriminating somewhere.
This development has shocked legal experts, who find the whole thing overly-broad:
“They want the ability to get a warrant on the assumption that they will learn more after they have a warrant,” one attorney told Forbes.
In other words, they want a warrant that allows them to go on a fishing expedition. Lawyers at Electronic Freedom Foundation are predictably incensed as well.
But it's all in a gray area at present, with conflicting decisions. It is at once disconcerting and a good reason not to go with an iPhone, since the battery can't easily be removed by the user. Since I have an Android, the first thing I'd do would be to pop off the back of the phone and remove the battery. If time permitted, I'd stash it somewhere. So yeah, officer, I have my phone, but dang - no power. That'd make it kind of hard to search the phone. Not that there would be anything of import to them on it anyway, but to me, it's a matter of principle.
The Environmental Protection Agency may have overlooked the real culprits in its recent crackdown on methane emissions from fossil fuels: rice farmers and cows.
A newly released study led by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration attributed the increase in global atmospheric methane since 2007 to microbial sources, including rice paddies, livestock, decaying vegetation in wetlands and even termites — but not fossil fuels.
The report, published Thursday in the journal Nature, provided fodder to those challenging the EPA’s methane rule, released in May, which seeks to cut methane emissions from fossil fuel sources by 40 percent to 45 percent by 2025 from 2012 levels in order to combat climate change.
Well, as I just mentioned for the umpteenth time, the main animal-related source of methane is termites. Cows produce a lot, yes - but so do all ruminants. So again: carbon dioxide is what plants use to make oxygen and things that we can eat and things that we can live in, out of the weather. Methane is produced by microbes that live in the guts of termites and other animals - and by decaying vegetation in the very wetlands that environmeddlists like EPA and Sierra Club think we should be forced to preserve. If any humans are causing global warming, it's the environmeddlists. "Man made global warming" is about control - not about science.