Daily Archives: February 12, 2004

One size fits all

Pentagon missile could boost jobs in aerospace here

The “Joint Common Missile” would replace several missile systems used by the Army and Navy. (The Air Force might buy in later.) Raytheon joined Boeing and Northop Grumman in announcing that they’d boost employment in Huntsville if they won the contract. I expect this has something to do with Jeff Sessions being on the Senate Armed Forces Committee and chairman of the Airland Subcommittee, but maybe I’m unduly cynical. Or maybe it’s because Terry Everett, another Alabamian, is on the House Committee and head of the Strategic Forces Subcommittee. Again, cynical. I’m sure that Huntsville is the best place for it.

Degrading reality show (British Division)

Telegraph | News | No daylight for reality celebs

Reality shows, among other things, eat their own. So you have this: a reality show starring people from other reality shows who are locked in a house where they won’t get any natural light and the lights are controlled from outside. Seriously, we’re getting closer and closer to the day when The Most Dangerous Game is on our TV sets every Wednesday at 9.

New Jersey joins the fun

WUAL: Bird Flu Found at NJ Live Poultry Markets- Report (2004-02-12)

A (reportedly non-harmful to humans) strain of avian influenza has shown up at four poultry markets in New Jersey. It’s the same strain as showed up in Delaware. The live poultry markets are popular among Hispanic immigrants who — silly immigrants! — prefer fresh poultry. Apparently, this isn’t a really uncommon occurrence — state officials say that they find bird flu at about 40 percent of live poultry markets.

Habersham miss

OnlineAthens: News: Habersham drops fight for displays 02/12/04

Amazingly, a North Georgia county has dropped its appeal of a Ten Commandments monument removal order because it will cost taxpayers too much money. Yes, a genuinely conservative impulse!

Roy Moore always pretended that his thing wasn’t going to cost Alabama taxpayers a dime. This was, as pretty much everything he said, untrue. The state is on the hook for all the attorneys’ fees racked up by Ten Commandments opponents, as was inevitable. (The rules are that the state has to pick up those fees in Constitutional cases if its actions are found unconstitutional, and everyone with a lick of sense knew that the Granite Calf was unconstitutional.) Moreover, even if his backers picked up the state’s various bills, there’s no replacement for the time spent by state attorneys and other workers fighting to promote St. Roy’s giant ego. That time is lost forever.

Very mild kudos to Habersham County, but they never should have started this in the first place.

Bill Pryor, friend of the environment

State files lawsuit over sewer spill

Even Republicans have their limits, and the city of Pritchard allowing millions of gallons of sewage to leak into Mobile Bay — and not doing anything about it for five months — is well over any reasonable limit. Pryor wants to remove control of the system from the Water Works board, which had ignored a consent decree ordering systemwide improvements. The fines were $25K a day, for five months… that’s about $3.9 million. Did I mention that Pritchard is bankrupt?

And somehow, the Republic survived

Explicit valentine display moved from heart of store

Apparently, the store manager managed to find the time to make the local phone call to the corporate office ten miles up the road and got permission to move the display.

Thanks again, KKR

Bruno’s for sale again

Leveraged buyouts in a nutshell… Takeover specialists KKR bought Bruno’s Supermarkets in 1995. This stuck an otherwise healthy company with a massive debtload and turned a locally-owned business into one owned by outsiders — outsiders who moreover had little background in the industry. Having wounded the company and run it into the ground so bad it declared bankruptcy in 1998, KKR sold it to a Dutch chain (owners of the ludicrously-named “Bi-Lo”) in 2001. And now it’s getting passed on again, if the Dutch can find a taker. If they do find a buyer, it will probably be a big supermarket chain like Kroger’s that will convert the stores and put thousands of local workers out of work. I put it to you that an economic system that allows people to borrow money in order to ruin healthy companies has something wrong with it.