The Alabama Moderate

Painting the Red State Purple.

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Archive for May, 2007

Do You Have a Question for Rep. Davis?

Posted by ALmod on May 30, 2007

Note:  This is a cross-post from Politics in Alabama.  To see the original post and to respond to it, click here.  I have turned off commenting on this particular post so that all questions will be directer toward the original author, Jeff Vreeland.

On Thursday morning I will have the privilege of meeting and talking with United States Representative Artur Davis while he is in town at his Birmingham office. I hope to be able to discuss some of the going ons of Alabama Politics as well as chat with him about his future political endeavors.

One thing I wanted to do was give my readers an opportunity to submit questions that I will present to Representative Davis. Obviously I am not going to be able to get every question answered, but I will hopefully get a majority of them. So please, submit all questions via the comments and I will post Wednesday night exactly which questions I hope to ask.


Posted in Blogroll, Federal Government | Comments Off on Do You Have a Question for Rep. Davis?

Another “Duh” and a Yawn

Posted by ALmod on May 24, 2007

Okay, I’m sick of resolutions.  They’re a waste of time.  Every single one of them.  They just don’t do anything, and if you’re getting paid 62% more this session, I’d better be seeing something a bit more impressive than resolutions in the Alabama House and the twiddling of thumbs in the Alabama Senate.

That being said, I did find this highly amusing.  As everyone knows by now, Brett Blackledge of The Birmingham News recently won a Pulitzer Prize for his investigative reporting on the Alabama two-year college system.  Now with all the commendations and condolences that flow through the state legislative branch, they refuse to pass a resolution praising Blackledge for his achievement.  Gee, I wonder why.  Next, you’ll be hearing about how Karl Rove didn’t personally deliver a gift basket to Joe Wilson.  Oh, the outrage!

Of course, The Birmingham News seems to have it’s panties in a wad over this apparent blasphemy.

Posted in Alabama Government, Scandal | 1 Comment »

We Really Aren’t All That Different

Posted by ALmod on May 24, 2007

A controversial new poll hit the news early yesterday:

“The study found that among the nation’s younger Muslims, 26 percent say homicide bombings can at least rarely be justified ‘in order to defend Islam from its enemies.'”

You have to ask yourself about the question that was asked.  How was it phrased?  The reason that I wonder about these things is because of the public reaction during the trial and sentencing of Eric Robert Rudolph, who was responsible for bombing a Birmingham abortion clinic among other things.  I remember very well the letters that were written to local newspapers, including The Birmingham News.  I remember people talking about how the doctors were killing babies and how they got what they deserved.  I wonder what percentage of Christians would say that killing might be rarely justified in order to kill a true enemy of God.  Don’t get me started on what percentage of Christians are die hard supporters of the death penalty– not because it’s the law, but because they believe that the accused truly deserves to die.   They are, after all, evil.

If were you faced with pure evil and there was no question, and it threatened to destroy the very fabric of Christianity, is there any possibility that it would ever be justified to kill someone?  How do you answer that?  Let me turn this one around for the atheists.  If you child were in danger…?  What would it take to answer the question in the affirmative?  Is the killing of another human being ever justified?  Can someone get me the latest polls on the Iraq War and tell me what the current percentage in support is?

My question was answered within mere minutes.

“…Campbell County authorities arrested a Liberty University student for having several homemade bombs in his car. The student, 19-year-old Mark D. Uhl of Amissville, Va., reportedly told authorities that he was making the bombs to stop protesters from disrupting the funeral service [of Rev. Jerry Falwell].”

I might add that one of those protesters just happened to be Fred Phelps.  You might know him as the guy who likes to protest funerals of dead soldiers and hold up signs that read “Thank God for IED’s”.  And this is the funeral of Jerry “Kill Them All in the Name of the Lord” Falwell.  A man who himself encouraged such views among (dare I say) roughly 26% of Evangelical Christians.  The student who was arrested attended Falwell’s own Liberty University.

I should also mention that I originally planned to make this my first post on The Gun Toting Liberal, but Gunny beat me to it and pretty much had the very same reaction.

Posted in Religion | 5 Comments »


Posted by ALmod on May 23, 2007

That’s me, at least. As you already know, I’ve been contributing to Between the Links on occasion. I’m very happy to announce tonight that I’ll also be contributing a couple times a week to The Gun Toting Liberal, which The Moderate Voice refers to as “one of the best blogs on the Net.” I was very humbled and honored that the GTL would ask me to join in on the fun. Honestly, I don’t know that I’ll be able to live up to the other contributors over there, but I guess we’ll just have to wait and see…

I’m adding a new feature later this evening. If you’ll keep an eye on the links to the right, I’m going to add a new category for other blogs that I contribute to. Maybe if I send Gunny a few of my readers, he’ll be a little more forgiving when I write a stinker or two.

Posted in Blogroll, Site News | 2 Comments »

From the “Duh” Files

Posted by ALmod on May 23, 2007

CEO’s have no realistic views as to how their low tier employees are performing.  Worse than that.  They’re completely clueless.  But outsourcing your customer service to a foreign country, where you have no real way of controlling what happens, is o-tay!

Here’s something I’ve been saying for years, and MSNBC is finally picking up on:

“Budget conscious companies in the ultra-competitive consumer electronic industry are always looking to cut corners, and customer service always seems like a good target. Companies save on employee costs by forcing people to work their way through voice mail systems or by skimping on warrantees. But that’s a penny-wise, pound-foolish strategy, Sprague said. The actual cost of providing good customer service — having a human being answer the phone, for example — only costs between $10 and $30 per customer. Acquiring new customers is much more expensive. Direct broadcast satellite system firms like DirecTV spend on average about $600 to acquire customers, he said.”

Ya think?  I’ve had that very conversation with more than one corporate suit.  One of them was the CEO of an outsourcing company.  Do you know what they told me?  “Way to think outside the box!”  Is it just me or would my reasoning be mere common sense more than thinking outside the box?  Of course, none of them took my advice because it would “devastate the bottom line.”  Enjoy the bottom line you have nowadays, guys.  You’ve earned it.

What is it about climbing the corporate ladder that slowly deteriorates your ability to think outside the short-term?

Posted in Corporate Craziness | 1 Comment »

The Court Papers

Posted by ALmod on May 19, 2007

I’m going to try to get a copy of the court papers that everyone received on here. If I can’t get it done this weekend, I’ll have them up on Monday. I don’t have a scanner here, so I may have to use a friend’s to convert it to PDF. Give me a few hours to see if I can get something up myself. If anyone has already scanned their own copy and has it as PDF, by all means send it my way. It will save me a lot of trouble.

I’ve said before that the papers don’t really mean anything new. This is a suit (so to speak) filed against the people of Argo who signed the petition, but they are not seeking monetary damages. They are seeking to have the petition thrown out. Those named in the case are nothing new, either, so I doubt it was necessary to inform everyone or send them a copy of the papers. If it was, they’d have probably done it via certified mail at the very least so that they could provide proof of notification. There were also no requests for response enclosed with the papers that asked to verify a signature.

My thoughts are that this was a scare tactic. Plain and simple. And I don’t see any lighter side to a town’s leadership trying scare tactics on the citizens they are supposed to serve. If anyone has any other ideas or explanations for this being done, I’d be glad to hear it. The above two have pretty much been thrown out for the reasons I listed.


Here they are.

I copied a pasted from a PDF of a fax that someone else sent me.  I didn’t include all 14 pages because most of them just continue the list of names.  I have blacked out all last names except for the first, which is named as the main defendant.  (The only reason why I didn’t black that one out as well is so that if someone wanted information on the case they would have the case name to reference it to.  I will gladly black this out as well at the person’s request.  No other personal information is given such as addresses or phone numbers.)  It should be public record, so if my word and the mayor’s signature aren’t good enough for you, you should be able to call the county probate clerk and get a copy for yourself.

Posted in Argo | 2 Comments »

Argo Serves Its Citizens

Posted by ALmod on May 18, 2007

With court papers.

About 360+ Argo citizens will be getting a big surprise when they check their mail today. They’ll find an envelope from Trussell & Funderburg, P.C. In it, they will find some very scary looking documents that show their names and the names of their neighbors who signed the deannexation petition. And these documents SHOULD be scary because they mean… pretty much nothing.

Well, I should say that they mean something. This is nothing more than a copy of their appeal to the Alabama Supreme Court to stop the election. It wasn’t sent to you because you must be served with court documents. It was sent to scare you. If you are served with court documents, it must be done in such a way that they can prove that you received them. Certified mail is one example. Often, it’s done in person with a witness.

Yet another scare tactic to keep the citizens in their place. And all this just the day before they celebrate their 20th Anniversary. How appropriate.

By the way, I’ll be happy to send a copy of the paperwork to anyone who wants it. Press included.

UPDATE:  Birmingham Blues links to this post with The Argo Saga Continues…

Posted in Argo, Scandal | 6 Comments »

A Math Problem

Posted by ALmod on May 18, 2007

If a customer’s order totals $7.24, and the customer hands the cashier one $10 bill, two $1 bills, and a quarter, how long does it take for the guy in the drive-thru to realize that the customer wants back a $5 bill and a penny?

BONUS:  How much money will the customer be willing to be shortchanged in order to drive off without having to go through the frustration of teaching the principles of elementary math to a sixteen-year-old?

Come on, McDonald’s.  You’ve served over one billion.  Surely you can afford a few cheap calculators to supply to your employees.

Posted in Laugh It Off | 3 Comments »

WBC to Protest Falwell’s Funeral

Posted by ALmod on May 17, 2007

I think everyone was surprised by the latest move from Fred Phelps.  At least, I was.  I never saw it coming that they would attack someone who spoke out so loudly against homosexuals and gay marriage.

H/T to Wheeler for posting.

Kathy has a discussion going on “how Falwell helped to create the ‘Satanic Sodomite Zeitgeist’, whatever the hell that is.”

Posted in Religion | 1 Comment »

Bloggers, MSM, Lawyers, & Activists: Your Dreams Have Come True!

Posted by ALmod on May 16, 2007

The Town of Argo issued a press release to several local newspapers last night. It will probably pop up tomorrow morning. You’re going to love this.

Argo’s leadership states that it has no intention of scheduling a vote at this time and will in fact fight it all the way to the Alabama Supreme Court. Never has it been so obvious that a group of leaders are so opposed to the intentions of the people they serve. To boot, they’re using the town’s treasury to pay court fees and attorney fees to fight the townspeople, yet they state that scheduling a vote would be a waste of town resources.

This should anger people all across this state. No, this should anger anyone who believes in the democratic process and the principles on which this country was founded. That includes people all around this country and even outside this country. And it has. I’ve taken no less than 20 calls this morning. So many in fact that I was late in posting this. Jackson beat me to it. I’ve gotten calls from members of the press, local politicians, French Canadians, and Argo citizens who begged me to write about this. Some stated that they’d either been wavering in support or had been on the other side of the issue until the town leadership’s last two actions.

As Jackson pointed out, this could very well result in legal or ethics charges being brought against the town leaders. A few people are already in the process of contacting the district attorney’s office for an official opinion.

I hope Albert Jordan is enjoying this. I’ve heard it described by several people as a lawyer’s dream come true.

I sincerely hope that they do take this to the Alabama Supreme Court. They’re likely to make BIG news that way, and gain even more outrage from the public as a town leadership holding its citizens hostage. The ACLU loves this sort of thing. Maybe we’ll even be featured on The Daily Show.

I get the idea. Drag it out as long as possible and make some slight improvements so that there’s less to complain about. Trouble is, you’ve addressed a minor complaint that only concerned a few and replaced it with a major complaint that shakes up anyone who believes in a free democracy. Our forefathers and our modern day sons and daughters have fought and are fighting for the very rights that the town leadership seems to think are trivial. Somehow, I don’t believe that a public park and a zoning board are going to make up for that.

If you believe in the right of these people to vote but have been hanging out in the background thinking yourself safe, I urge you to start taking a more active role. You are not safe. If their rights are denied, yours will be next. You will be less free tomorrow than you are today. Speak out. Step up. You are not alone.

Specifically to the people of Argo, I want to say this. The petition was only out there for a week. It wasn’t heavily pushed, and it gained over 350 signatures from just those who made an effort to sign it. Even more people are out there who never got an opportunity to sign the petition and wanted to. I know you are scared, but you are not alone. If we all stand up together and quit hiding, it will be overwhelming. They won’t be able to ignore us. It won’t require you to spend any money or rearrange your busy schedule.

The annexation supporters are giving away t-shirts to support their cause. A donation is requested but not required. If you’ll email me, I can get you one. Wear it, and show your support. Better yet, wear it to a town council meeting or other public event. Stick a piece of duct tape over your mouth while you’re at it. Sport a pair of toy handcuffs (or even the fuzzy variety). You don’t need a permit. I’d even recommend using your wallet to demonstrate to local businesses that we mean business. There are plenty of diners, gas stations, contractors, and pizza joints outside of town without having to spend money toward destroying the democratic process. In fact, if a business displays or has their employees wear one of the t-shirts I’ve just mentioned, I’ll happily endorse them and send business their way. Just let me know.

UPDATE: Capstone Report links to this post in OUTRAGE:Town squelches public’s right to vote.

UPDATE: Birmingham Blues links to this post in Argo Leadership Goes To War With Its Citizens.

UPDATE: My string of posts about Argo have been submitted to the Alabama Bloggers Carnival.

UPDATE: The Birmingham News covers the press release in their article Argo wants petition for annexation reviewed.

Posted in Argo | 8 Comments »