Senator Ken Yager abstains.

OK, this is weird! Vultures don't kill things to eat. Yet the TN Senate committee "votes" that they do. The amount of loss due to this natural carrion consuming bird cannot be any where near the loss environmentally if it is eliminated.

(link...)

Voucher vote too close for GOP so the vote was delayed until they can round up the delinquent GOP Reps, one of them disgraced and under siege Rep. Jeremy Durham. So we have GOP Representatives who don't care enough about their constituents to show up and we're going to hold everything up so we can get their votes to destroy public schools? Really?

(link...)

Mon
Feb 8 2016
08:17 am

This is fun to do and you can learn a to identify lots of your yard visitors in the process. Here is the "Getting Started" link which has lots of resources for identifying birds. Binoculars are very helpful.

Yellow Rumped Warbler

(link...)

...For all to see. From Keel Hunt at the Tennessean...

This scandal is no longer just about allegations of the misbehavior of one member of the Tennessee House of Representatives — no more than Watergate was about a third-rate burglary...

...In years past, our legislative halls have seen moments of brilliance and progress, even heroism, on policy issues like better health care for kids, better schools and better roads. What we are living through now is not one of those times, and heroes are hard to find. There are good souls who serve in our General Assembly, true enough, but they often labor in silence and frustration.

(link...)

These people scare me... A whole lot!

(link...)

Fri
Feb 5 2016
08:43 am

For the rest of their lives.

(link...)

I wish this were not true...

(link...)

Thu
Feb 4 2016
07:07 pm

Most humans never see Mercury to know it. A brilliant tiny diamond, it is well worth your time to wander out and look into the eastern sky Friday morning. Venus is the big one.

Mercury

(link...)

Sunrise is at 7:36 so 6:36 should get you a show to remember. It should be clear and cold. Do it!

Thu
Feb 4 2016
08:07 am

House Speaker Beth Harwell (R) says her inability to effectively cover up Majority Whip Jeremy Durham's sexual escapades and harassment charges shouldn't hurt her chances at being our next governor. Durham, meanwhile, has taken a leave of absence to pray and seek rehab, following old Tom Delay's tried and true formula of being re-baptized to emerge from the waters of the state of Tennessee reborn and clean. The problem with that is that the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation seems to have shut down its water quality enforcement division, letting polluters have free run at destroying the health of our drinking water sources. Durham may want to be baptized in bottled water this time around. Harwell, having failed at sweeping this under the carpet, is now calling for Durham's resignation and sending a strong message to the other GOP members of her house, "If you get caught it had better not make the newspapers!"

That and more goodies from:


Crockett for 2-4-16

Wed
Feb 3 2016
08:38 pm
By: WhitesCreek

These people are so full of fear that it astounds me.

“God’s out and Allah’s in” in Roane County Schools, according to the county’s Tea Party.

Roane Schools Director Gary Aytes...

“It’s just about all religion and the effects that religion had on the development of the history of the world,” he said. “It’s what we’ve always done. I’ve been here 41 years, it hasn’t changed. It’s the same as when I was in school.”

(link...)

There are few sounds in nature that compare with the song of the wood thrush.

“Researchers have long suspected that forest loss in Central America has been the primary driver of wood thrush declines because the rate of forest loss in much of those countries is far higher than the rate of forest loss in North America, where the birds breed,” said Clark Rushing, an SCBI postdoc and primary author of the study published Jan. 27 in Proceedings of the Royal Society B. “While habitat loss in Central America does play a role in the observed declines across the species’ breeding range, we were surprised to find that loss of habitat on breeding grounds in North America seems to be contributing even more to the declines in several wood thrush populations.

(link...)

Mon
Feb 1 2016
07:50 am

Eventually everybody gets a traffic ticket. The cost of the ticket is small compared to the potential insurance increases or lost time and pay at work to appear before the judge.

New Roane County General Sessions Court Judge Terry Stevens is planning to start holding traffic court on Monday evenings...

“I think it’s important for people who have a job to not have to miss an entire or half a day’s work to come to court when the court system can provide an alternative,” he said.


More

Sat
Jan 30 2016
12:23 pm

Gallagher Road gas station clerk...our hero of the day:

(link...)

Sat
Jan 30 2016
09:03 am

I have begun to think of tasers as "electronic billy clubs". It's use in instances like this does not engender the trust we need to foster between law enforcement and the rest of the people. Perhaps no laws were broken by the police but could this have been avoided? There was absolutely zero evidence of a crime, but the cleaning woman did not react according to "policy" either. I don't think we should be trying to pin blame, but I do think that we should be examining "policy and law" and see if we can work toward something that serves people better than what we have now.

Two Collegedale, Tenn., police officers mistook a Guatemalan woman hired to clean Ooltewah Middle School for a burglar and used a Taser to stop her when she ran from them earlier this month, police records show.

Some experts say the officers used too much force when arresting the woman, while others say the men acted within policy and within the law that night

If these officers acted "within the law and within policy" I suggest we need a good open minded review of the law and policy. As it stands now a working woman became afraid of men with guns and was put in jail for evading arrest for a crime that wasn't happening.

(link...)

Fri
Jan 29 2016
08:01 am

Music critic Steve Wildsmith picked Ben Gaines and Three Star Revival's first CD as one of the best of 2015. We're proud to say the release party was at Ladd Landing Listening Room, where they will be performing tonight. Their second CD is in the box and they are raising money to get it released. Come out and support them, why don't you?

These guys put on one of the more fun shows ever...and they are danged good at what they do. Here's a sample of them fooling around on the couch just to give you a taste...

Fri
Jan 29 2016
07:37 am

When we first moved to Roane County way back in the last century (1988) things were more than tight financially. I can't begin to tell you how many times Terry Webb and Precision Battery saved us from being dead on the side of the road with a bad starter, alternator or battery. This is one more noble act after Terry left us. Here's hoping the crew can keep it going and hand it down to the next generation. I highly recommend you check them out next time the need occurs. I know it's easy to go to the big box store but you owe it to yourself to see what old fashioned customer service looks like. Here's the WVLT story:

(link...)

After the cover-up failed, TN GOP leadership has decided to grandstand on demanding he resign. Rep Durham has withdrawn to an unspecified (rehab) location for two weeks instead. Lt Gov (Really De-Facto Governor) Ron Ramsey says "Nudge Nudge, Wink wink! Hanky Panky going on but refuses to name female involved, but says everybody knows who I'm talking about."

If these people didn't hold the future of our state in their grubby evil hands I would be calling for more buttered popcorn to watch the mud fight. These folks continue to embarrass Tennessee and it's citizens. We deserve better.

Here you go...

(link...)

Thu
Jan 28 2016
01:13 pm

Quote of the Day:

The pro-voucher groups have tons of out-of-state money provided by eccentric billionaires who hate public education and “teacher unions.” Their ultimate goal is to kill public education and replace it with “the private sector.” A House member will need courage to vote against people who can dump six-figure contributions to a potential opponent.

Thank you, Frank Cagle!

I am deeply saddened that this is what we have to report on...

January 25, 2016

On Monday January 25, 2016, at approximately 2:50 pm, Cumberland County 911 Dispatch received a call of a 7 year old male bleeding from the head, in a US HWY 127 North business parking lot. Upon the arrival of Crossville Police Officers, it was discovered that 4 children had been left unattended in a vehicle, while the mother and step-father were inside the business, paying a bill, a short distance from the vehicle. The family had been in Crossville, from White County. City units did find a 7 year old boy bleeding, at the scene.

It was reported to investigators that one of the children located a loaded semi-automatic pistol inside their mother’s purse, which was left in the vehicle. Further reports indicate that the child removed the magazine in an effort to unload the firearm. The firearm was accidentally discharged, striking the 7 year old male victim.

The child was flown to a Knoxville area trauma hospital for treatment, with an unknown exact condition. At this time, statements are being taken from all involved and the investigation is continuing. The Cumberland County District Attorney General’s office and the Department of Children’s Services have been notified and are involved in the investigation.

This is interesting. We previously speculated that TN House Majority Whip Jeremy Durham had to have something on the party leadership for them to leave him in his leadership position after instances of his criminal behavior and sexual harassment came to light. Now, Durham has resigned his leadership position but remains in the House even though Democrats have repeatedly called for his resignation. Now Mary Mancini goes there:

Tennessee Democratic Party Chair Mary Mancini today called for the resignations of Republican House Speaker Beth Harwell, Majority Leader Gerald McCormick and GOP Caucus Chairman Glen Casada,reports the Times-Free Press. She contends the leaders sought to shield Republican Majority Whip Jeremy Durham despite knowing of sexual harassment allegations against him.

Harwell, feeling the heat, is now calling for Durham to resign, apparently hoping that will divert attention from her involvement.

That and a bunch of other crazy TN legislative stuff at the Crockett Buzz:

(link...)

Tue
Jan 26 2016
07:54 am

Looking for something extra special for your Valentine?

Deadline to purchase tickets to the valentines show featuring Jason Eskridge is Jan 31...Dinner and music $30 per person. This will be held February 13th at the Jamieson Development Center (no alcohol) on Margrave in Harriman. Doors open at 5 PM with events starting at 6.

Deadline to purchase tickets is January 31st. This is a private event put on by some good people and they need time to get everything ready. Contact Barbara Moore on FaceBook or call 864-554-7996.

I'll see you there.

Mon
Jan 25 2016
10:07 am

From the RCN:

1. Keep Midway and Oliver Springs, combine Harriman, Rockwood and Roane County High into one.

2. 2 Keep Midway. Build 2 new schools: Harriman Rockwood combine. Oliver Springs Roane County High combine.

3. Keep Midway, all others combine into new school.

4. All existing schools go away. Two new schools: One serves Oliver Springs, Harriman, Rockwood and part of RCHS...The other serves the rest of RCHS and Midway.

5. One new school serves the whole county.

I can't find this study posted anywhere. Let us know if you find it or can get us a copy.

Sun
Jan 24 2016
06:08 pm

TN House Whip says it's all the media's fault he's a creep.

I say "Thank you, media, for pointing out what a creep Durham is." Now find out why the TNGOP didn't have the fortitude to kick him out when they voted on it?

(link...)

Sun
Jan 24 2016
09:07 am

A good man has passed away.

(link...)

Sat
Jan 23 2016
05:27 pm

The "Other Voices" block over on the right is a never ending roller coaster of fascinating things happening in the science world. Venus flytraps can count and students do better in classrooms with windows that look out on trees and grass and shrubberies. Why do zebras have stripes?

Go learn something.

Fri
Jan 22 2016
08:45 pm
By: WhitesCreek

Roane County Schools have been cancelled for tomorrow...

Fri
Jan 22 2016
10:03 am

Sometimes my head can't shake fast enough to keep up with our Legislature. We have children dying because the EPA isn't strong enough to enforce clean water and air laws and these guys claim air pollution is good for alfalfa?

Some senators said they’re for getting rid of emissions testing altogether because it’s a burden on lower-income drivers who sometimes have to fork over hundreds of dollars to fix cars that flunk the test.

Sen. Janice Bowling, R-Tullahoma, seized the opportunity to go on a rant against climate change, which isn’t happening as far as she’s concerned. She denounced the EPA as a “rogue agency” and mocked liberals who think that “by changing our lightbulbs we can save polar bears.”

Sen. Frank Niceley, R-Hollow Stump somewhere near Strawberry Plains, said it reminded him that “some of these emissions are good.” He said coal-burning trains back in the day improved alfalfa crops along the tracks by spewing much-needed sulphur.

(link...)

Lost Medicaid Funding

To date, the failure to expand Medicaid / TennCare has cost the State of Tennessee ? in lost federal funding.