VMG Blog Pages

Friday, March 30, 2007

Vermont Frost Heaves win ABA Championship!

The Vermont Frost Heaves proved to be the "bump in the road" for the Texas Tycoons as they throttled them in the Championship game held in Barre last night....

ABAlive.com - Home of the American Basketball Association

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Arnold shares his deepest feelings

YTMND - Arnold shares his deepest feelings

This has to rank pretty high up there on the annoying webpages of all time list...but somehow I was still amused for the first 10 seconds or so!

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

The Beer Launcher

Now here is a useful invention...This is the kind of innovation that we should encourage here in Vermont and around the country. I'm pretty sure that the braniacs in the Asian countries aren't working on stuff as important as this....

Robotic Beer Launching Refrigerator - Watch today’s top amazing videos here

Monday, March 26, 2007

New Product Announcement from Apple

Check out the next generation of gee-whiz from the folks that brought you the i-pod.

Clip is from Mad TV...

Sunday, March 25, 2007

My New Axe....

I've been waiting to find just the right guitar. I think I may have found it....

With a fixed bridge and single humbucking pickup, this Kitty is ready to rock. Agathis body, maple 25-1/2"-scale neck, die-cast chrome machine heads, single volume control, jumbo frets, and a custom Hello Kitty pickguard.
Man will my friends be jealous...

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Raise the Minimum Wage!

"The US senate passed a bill to boost the federal minimum wage by $2.10 an hour over the next two years, bringing the federal minimum wage to $7.25 an hour by 2009. The bill contained amendments with controversial tax cuts for small businesses. The increase in the minimum wage is the first in a decade. It was approved by a 94-3 vote, finishing a nine day debate on the senate floor. The bill will now be reconciled with the House version that contained no tax provisions passed on January 10, 2007.
Senator Leahy voted yes on the bill, Senator Sanders Voted yes on the bill, and Representative Welch voted yes on the bill."

I think its very interesting to note that this site quotes a study that shows the last minimum wage increase had little to no impact on businesses. In fact it made measurable improvements in lower unemployment rates etc... So much for the Republican argument against raising the minimum wage. The Republicans would lead you to believe that by raising the minimum wage you will actually lose jobs. Businesses will have to eliminate positions at the low end of the pay scale (the expendibles) in order to maintain staff payrolls. What a bunch of crap! How about increase the price of your product by 1% and let the people who can afford it shoulder the burden.

I think the key thing to point out is that, while the minimum wage has stayed the same, government entitlements have seen steady increases. The payoff for working has too be greater than the payoff for being poor. People will work if it's wortwhile. Why bust your ass if you can get to the same nowhere in life by walking to the mailbox and getting a check? In either instance, you have to provide a liveable wage. Oh and by the way, we haven't even begun to discuss how the minimum wage stacks up against housing or healthcare costs. That is another lengthy discussion altogether. How did things end up this way? Why has the income gap grown into an impassible Great Divide? Mobil/Exxon and others are making record profits and the guy that pumps your gas can't afford housing without working a second job....Oh, wait. We already eliminated his job years ago with the greedy advent of self-service.....That's ok, I hear they're hiring like crazy in India and China. It's kind of a difficult commute though.

Alas, I'm left wondering what plausible argument one could make as to why the minimum wage is not tied to economic indicators or perhaps Congressional pay raises....
Read more about the facts here!

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Vermont Combine Update

As NFL draft dat is rapidly approaching and NASCAR is just getting under way, I thought it would be a good time to check on our local football hero David Ball. If you recall, while attending UNH, David broke several NCAA records including the TD record formerly held by Jerry Rice. Being a fellow Spaulding High School graduate (class of 84), I've been trying to keep track of him.

I found this scouting report from the NFL combines. It basicly ranks him as a 4th or 5th receiver or perhaps a multi-purpose guy like Wes Welker (now with the Patriots). I think he has good potential as a slot receiver.

At any rate I wish David the best of luck in finding a home in the NFL. Go TIDE!

Thursday, March 15, 2007

KSM whiners are whacked....

I can't believe all this KSM crap! Does anyone really care what they did to this guy? Any one of the acts that he has claimed responsibility for would be grounds for using (with a clear conscience) "all means necessary" to protect innocent lives. Admittedly, it's a little scary to have this mentality prevail in the U.S. , but I think it is justifiable considering the nature of this conflict. You can debate both sides of the politics, but the reality is this deadly enemy has no plans to go away quietly. I wouldn't care if they locked him in a room and made him listen to an endless loop of Sean Hannity and Bill O'reilly. We're at war now whether you agree with how we got there or not. The politicians are seizing this opportunity to further divide and conquer this country. We are consumed by the war, the loss of lives and the quest for moral ground. The whole time the rich people on both sides of the aisle are raking in record profits, seemingly behind our backs, yet right in front of our eyes.

I also question the unmistakable "Captain Obvious" political move the Bush administration attempted to deploy this week. Has anyone been lulled into believing that breaking of KSM story at this time is nothing more than an attempt to sway the Congressional vote on the war budget. "Look how bad this guy is! We're definitely going to need more money...". I think the timing is clearly designed to counter the Democrats pull-out plan and shame on them for being so transparent. I for one feel my intelligence has been insulted. Karl Rove would have executed that maneuver in a much slicker manner...

We can disagree as long as we remember to keep the bigger picture in perspective. We are now in position that we have to physically defend our country and our way of life. We have historically been loathe to enter into global conflicts and slow to react. Yet this time we touched off a powder keg that we will have to live with for a long time. I think that a reasonable person could presume we will be there for the long haul. That will mean many more casualties on all sides. So if we have to waterboard a scumbag like KSM to fight this war and save some lives, I say go ahead.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

A Draft Moose?

UPDATE: I've found that this is in fact an Urban Legend. The photo has been doctored, much as I had suspected. See here for more details.
This message allegedly originated from a Park Service Employee in Morganstown, WV who had heard about it from another employee in Maine. I suspect that this may be the stuff that Urban Legends are made of...As of now I have been unable to verify the truth of the story....but it sure is interesting!!

"We had been trying to keep this under wraps as we knew this would happen once folks found out that with some effort you can train moose to harness. Once this picture got out, it's been E-mailed around like crazy but no one has bothered to fill in the rest of the story so before any rampant rumors get going, I better write down what I know. I folks want to extrapolate on that, then Lord only knows where this picture and story will end up.
The man in the picture is Jacques Leroux who lives up near Escourt Station and has always had work horses, first for actual work and then for show at Maine's' many summer fairs.
I think he had two matched pairs, one Clydesdales and the other Belgiums. He would turn them out to pasture each morning and then work them in the afternoon dragging the sled around the fields.
Three springs ago, he noticed a female moose coming to the pasture and helping herself of the hay and what grain the work horses didn't pick up off the ground. Jacques said he could get within 10 feet of the moose before it would turn and move off.
Two springs ago, the moose foaled(?)at the edge of the work horse pasture and upon getting to it's_? feet had not only the mother in attendance but the four horses. The young moose grew up around the horses and each afternoon when Mr. Leroux took the teams for their daily exercise the yearling moose would trail along the entire route next to the near horse.
At some point, the yearling got so accustomed to Mr. Leroux that, after he had brushed each horse after a workout, he started brushing down the moose. The moose tolerated this quite well so Mr. Leroux started draping harness parts over the yearling to see how he would tolerate these objects. The yearling was soon harness broken and now came the question of what could you do with a harness broke moose.
As you may or may not know, a great deal of Maine is being bought up by folks "from away" and some of them understand principles of forest management. Well the folks buying small parcels of land up in the area of the Allagash have it in their mind that they don't want big skidders and processors and forwarders on their small wood lots. Enter Mr. Leroux with his teams of horses. Every morning, when Mr.. Leroux loaded the teams into the horse trailer to go off to the days job, the yearling moose got quite riled up and one day loaded himself right into the trailer with the horses. At the job site, Jacques unloaded the horses and as the moose stayed right with them, he would take the Clydesdales and his brother Gaston would take the Belgians and off into the woods they would go with the moose trailing behind. They would put the harness on the moose in case they encountered someone who they could kid with the explanation that the moose was a spare in case something happened to one of the horses. The work required them to skid cut, limbed and topped stems to the landing where the stems could be loaded onto a truck for the pulp mill.
All morning long the two brothers brought out twitch after twitch of stems with the moose following the Belgian team for the most part. At lunch break Jacques had the bright idea of putting trace chains and a whiffle tree on the moose's harness and all afternoon the moose went back and forth following the Belgians in and out of the woods dragging his whiffletree along the ground. As there were no stumps in the skid trail, the whiffle tree never hung up on anything and that first day in harness went great. So next day, they hitched on first a small stem and the moose brought it out just fine following the Belgians.
Mr. Leroux told me they were up to four small stems now and the moose was doing just great. He cautioned however that there were a few problems with using a bull moose. Come June, when the new antlers start, the new bone is "in velvet" and must itch like crazy as the moose stops every once in awhile and rubs his rack against just about anything to appease the itch. Once, before the brothers learned to tie him of by himself while they had lunch, moose was rubbing his antlers against the hame on the Clydesdale called Jack and got it wedged there for a bit. Jacques said he wished he had a camera as it looked like moose was trying to push Jack over.
The other problem is the rutting season. The brothers learned quickly to leave moose in the barn as he was constantly on red alert in the woods during this time. The brothers are also considering trying this with two females to make a matched pair which would become an instant hit at the Maine Fairs. The trouble with the bulls is their racks. They would be constantly rubbing and hitting each other and yes they would have to be gelded as I just couldn't imagine getting the two bulls anywhere near each other, let alone in harness.
So now that this picture is going all over the place, the surprise has been let out of the proverbial bag. The Lerouxs want to continue the work of trying to get a pair of females in harness but they may have to end up breeding moose to do this and that's where they will run into trouble with the State of Maine IF & W. I'm sure they don't like the idea of the brothers "keeping" wild animals.
Thought you should know the rest of the story. If any of you doubt this please contact Tom Whitworth in Ashland ,Maine. I think he said was a second cousin to the Lerouxs and has seen this anomaly many times."

Saturday, March 03, 2007