Losing my hair and losing my mind in Western New York

Thursday, March 31, 2005

Murder in America

Today at approximately 10 AM, Terry Schiavo's murder in a hospice in Florida was finally, agonizingly, completed. In a final act of cruelty, Michael Schiavo, the archtect of her demise, forced her family out of the room during her last moments. Then, the coward that he is, he did NOT stay with her as she expired, allowing her to die alone with no family around her to comfort her. Welcome to America. Land of the Free, Home of the Brave. Unless you are a disabled invalid and costing your spouse lots of money. In which case we'll just let you starve to death.

I'll probably have more to say on this later. But for now I'll leave it at this. As Thomas Jefferson once said, "I tremble for my Country when I reflect that God is just." We have allowed a great crime to happen in our country today, and we will pay the price for it. Tremble for our country, weep for Terry Schiavo, and pray for us all.

Friday, March 18, 2005

Amherst Politicians caught Trespassing!

Heh. Just couldn't resist. Yep, those are real turkeys. They wandered onto my suburban lawn not all that long ago and I got a few good shots of them. Just thought I'd share.

Thursday, March 17, 2005

How can we screw them next?

Today is March 17th, St. Patrick's day.

All over the world, people are celebrating the life of one of the world's greatest missionaries by going out, partying and getting drunk.

Here in Buffalo however, the mood is a tad less festive. With the city in the hands of a state mandated Financial Control board, and Erie County facing major budget shortfalls from 50 years of tax and spend politics, Western New York politicians aren't so much wearin' the green as they are singing the blues.

For the last 6 months or so taxpayers have been letting Erie county politicians know how they feel. After having their feet held to the fire, the politicians are finally realizing that they can't continue to demand more from a shrinking tax-base, and are cutting back on spending.

However, in the midst of this great news, Amherst homeowners (Amherst is a major suburb of Buffalo, and part of Erie county) got a gut punch. While all around taxes and spending are being cut, the Amherst Town Assessor's office, with the arrogance of true bureaucrats, have made massive increases to the property assessments in Amherst. (See the link). This is causing nothing short of purple rage in Amherst as homeowners have to deal with hundreds to thousands of dollars more per year in increased property taxes due to the increased assessments.

Weary Man's own home assessment went from just over $70,000 to $100,000. An increase of nearly 30 large! And my assessment is nothing compared to some. It's no surprise that Amherst politicians are running scared. With many of them up for re-election in the fall, they are desperate to have this whole thing just go away. When a public meeting regarding the reassessment was suggested, most of the old guard rejected the idea outright. Saying about the last public meeting "It was 500 people screaming and hollering,".

Well no kidding! What a surprise that overtaxed, overregulated people would get upset that they are getting the tax shaft again! The politicians need to get a freaking clue. People are tired of paying through the nose for the 'privilege' of owning a home in Amherst. The politicians seem to think that as long as they give us worthless boondoggles like the Pepsi Center (big ugly ice skating center that's been in the red since day one.) That Amherst taxpayers will just bend over and say "Thank you sir, may I have another?". I think not!

And what, other than the Pepsi Center, do we get for all these excessively high taxes? We get substandard services, and overpaid workers with lousy attitudes. The Amherst Parks Department won't remove half-dead trees because only less than half the tree is dead. Meanwhile, the still living half of the tree, like a creeping nightmare slowly lifts and breaks up sidewalks in it's desperate bid to find enough nourishment. Those same sidewalks, despite being owned and their presence mandated by the town, must be repaired and maintained at great cost by the individual homeowners whose property the sidewalk crosses!

As long as we are on the subject of sidewalks, While one would assume that it would be a good neighborly thing to clear the snow from your sidewalk, In Amherst if you don't clear the snow in a timely manner, you get a ticket! You know it's winter in Amherst when you see the little old ladies out trying to clear their walks of 6-8 inches of heavy wet snow for fear of getting a several hundred dollar ticket from one of our vaunted town workers.

This is merely one rather small example in a long string of abuses that Amherst and Western New York residents have had to endure. Now, at long last, the sleeping giant is awakening. Locals here are realizing that they can no longer afford to fund every pet project and create new law over every minor incident. They are standing up and screaming "I'm mad as hell and I'm not gonna take it anymore!" We shall see if out town leaders finally take note and listen, or if they are too busy stuffing thier pockets and thier ears with thier ill-taxed gain to hear the sound of the taxpayers revolution roaring up behind them.

Blog Launch

Well here I am, my very first ever blog. And here you are, my first ever readers. Excited? I know I am.

I suppose I should start out by introducing myself. My name is Matt, but you can call me the Weary Man. Why am I weary? Lots of reasons I suppose. Too many to count right now. But I don't want this intro to turn into a whine fest, nor do I want my blog to become that either. Who wants to spend time reading someone whine anyways? Not me, that's for sure. What I hope to accomplish is to lay bare some of the more common (and perhaps, not so common) issues that we all deal with that just drain us of vitality and wear us down. If for no other reason than to take solace in that fact that others are also dealing with that same issues. Hopefully, I will also be able to bring some good things to the blog as well. Mostly this is going to be a blog about me; Weary Man the Everyman, and the frustrations and elations of my life.

Ok, now that you know about me, I suppose a few basic ground rules would be in order. Rule Numero Uno: NO SPAM POSTS! I loath spam in all forms, and anyone caught spamming on my Blog gets the ban stick. Second rule is no Racism. However, I alone reserve the right to determine what constitutes racism and what does not. I will from time to time discuss race issues in my blog, and I welcome healthy discussion, but no race flaming from persons of any race.

Ok, that's out of the way. Well, I guess this marks the official start of my Blog. I have never done a blog before, so I will probably break a few rules along the way. I will change and grow, the whole focus of my blog may change. Who knows? But it will certainly be interesting.

Matt, the Wearyman.