Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Governor Peter Shumlin's Private Airline.

So in the 12 years that Jim Douglas was Governor of Vermont, not once did he utilize the official Vermont owned airplane (a Cessna 172). In the 2 years that Peter Shumlin has been governor he’s used it 5 times, including once for a personal campaign appearance.  The Governor, now that he’s been “made aware” he used it for personal business, has assured us he will pay the $65 cost of the flight

Much to the surprise of many Vermonters that didn’t know we even owned an airplane,  and questioned why in state where you can drive from any point to any point in around 2 ½ hours would the Governor need to be flying there? Many were even more surprised, some might even say outraged, by this little following tidbit of information.

Apparently Tom Cruise, er, I mean Peter Shumlin likes flying around the state SO much that he slipped in a $1.5 MILLION Dollar request in the upcoming budget for a spiffy new twin engine, six seat, style of aircraft. Something like a Beechcraft Baron G58. A plane with a top speed of 200 knots and a range of 1700 Miles.
You can imagine in a State where our legislature is proposing a tax on heating fuels, and is looking for how we’re going to pay for $1.2 Billion dollars to cover Peter’s idea of universal healthcare, that to find the Governor somehow feels justified in requesting a few million so he can fly around in style as being perhaps a bit out-of-touch.

One even might question if the type of aircraft being requested has perhaps ulterior motives? Where a Cessna is very good airplane to survey say flood damage from the air, something you could see a Governor doing. A Baron G58’s stall speed is nearly 100 mph (a Cessna’s is 47) kind of tough to really get a sense of damage when blow over it at triple digit speeds. A Cessna’s wings are above the fuselage giving nice unobstructed views of the ground; where as a Baron G58’s wings are below the fuselage, making ground observation very difficult. Just those two points alone eliminates the Baron from being anything much other than a flying point-to-point limo.

Ah yes a nice flying limo, that can not only take you from Montpelier to say Newport, but could also take you from Montpelier to say Washington, DC, or New York City, or even the island of Dominica, if one wanted. All paid for on the Vermont taxpayers dime. Unless of course you get questioned about it and then some of those trips might get paid for out-of-pocket, right Governor?

One of the first things that Peter Shumlin did when he became Governor 2 years ago, was by executive decree, kill a much needed road project here in the state. Incredibly perplexing as to why he would do such a thing, now I understand. When you don’t really drive on Vermont roads, and instead fly over them, the impact of having a lack of said roads doesn’t really bother you does it.

Ultimately the request for the airplane has since been “nixed” according to Transportation Secretary Brian Searles. Nixed of course after being discovered and questioned by the Vermont taxpayer, which seems to be a trend with this administration, back peddling after questioning.

Our Governor really likes the concept of transfer of wealth. While some of that transfer is of the “Robin Hood” mentality of, “taking from the rich to give to the poor”, the vast majority of Peter’s wealth grabbing is for the State government. Vermont is the 3rd highest taxed state in the union and the demands for more tax money just keep on coming. Then again when a “Socialism is for the people, not the Socialist” display of personal conveniences, such as a Beechcraft Baron G58 is brought to light, it’s not hard to understand why.  

Oh and the last piece of this flight saga, was that Brian felt the need to mention in addition to nixing the new plane, the old plane the Cessna is “not safe to fly and will not be used by any state officials.”; Which can be looked as a mea culpa from Peter, or simply setting the stage for another attempt to slip in a few million bucks for a new air-limo.

Thursday, January 31, 2013

2013 Might It Be Time To Blog Again?

2013 Might It Be Time To Blog Again?

With the advent of Facebook and the accumulation of "friends" that equal a built in captive audience to read your pithy opinions on everything from food to politics it's tough not to run there with every little thing you want to say.

What I found though is that the downfall of Facebook is that such opinions and indeed occasional literary brilliance is at best fleeting. A post goes up, and unless it goes viral with tons of shares it evaporates in the tsunami of post that follow it, and no one later gets to ruminate on your attempt to educate or entertain them unless they happen to be specifically cruising your Facebook account.

It just might be time to start blogging again. At worst you can link any "deep thought" responses to others inane ramblings back to the blog and drive traffic here.

Hmmm we'll see!