Important Legislation for a Short Session

Virginia has “short” and “long” sessions of its legislative session.  This is a “short” year, when legislators tell you they haven’t much time, and must deal with the most important issues.  Here is just a sampling of some they apparently put in that category.

 

HB 1420
Newborn screening; Krabbe disease. Requires the screening tests conducted on every infant born in the Commonwealth to include a screening test for Krabbe disease and other lysosomal storage disorders.

This is not the first time the Virginia legislature has dictated what tests must be run on newborns.  whether or not a person with an actual medical degree believes it necessary.

HB 1515

Information for maternity patients; safe sleep environments for infants.  Information for maternity patients; safe sleep environments for infants. Adds information about safe sleep environments for infants that is consistent with current information available from the American Academy of Pediatrics to the list of information that licensed nurse midwives, licensed midwives, and hospitals must provide to maternity care patients

Not only does the legislature want to practice medicine; it also wants to dictate what information your pediatrician or other health professional must provide you, removing all discretion based on medical knowledge and individual cases

HB1548

Revocation of concealed handgun permit; delinquency in child support payments. Provides for the revocation of an individual’s concealed handgun permit if such individual (i) has failed to comply with a subpoena, summons, or warrant relating to paternity or child support proceedings or (ii) is delinquent in the payment of child support by 90 days or more or in an amount of $5,000 or more. If the obligor remedies the delinquency, reaches an agreement with the obligee or Department of Social Services to remedy the delinquency, or complies with the subpoena, summons, or warrant, he may reapply for a concealed weapons permit.

Because the two are so closely related.  Doesn’t matter that you can’t afford your child-support payments, your life is not worth maintaining. Fortunately, does not note that one may carry a firearm in Virginia without a Concealed Handgun Permit.  This is a nose under the tent to removing firearms eligibility.
What happened to “punishment should fit the crime”?

HB1566

Grading system for individual school performance; star number scale. Requires the Board of Education to develop an individual school performance grading system and assign a grade or a series of grades to each public elementary and secondary school using a five-star to one-star scale, five-star being the highest grade. Current law requires individual school performance to be reported by October 1, 2016, using five letter grades from A to F.

Uh, excuse me?  The current six-letter scale uses A-F, but apparently we think our students and parents can’t understand the same grading method we use to grade them.  Let’s make it a five-star scale.  What?  Are we rating hotels?  Is this really an issue?

HJ593

Losing Loved Ones in a Tragic Accident Month

Who doesn’t want a “Losing Loved Ones in a Tragic Accident” Month?

HB2331

Definition of fur-bearing animal.  Defines the fisher as a fur-bearing animal in hunting and trapping provisions of the Code of Virginia. The fisher (Martes pennanti) is a small carnivorous mammal native to North America. It is a member of the weasel family.

Apparently, Virginia law has to mirror wikipedia, which lists 70 references for the animal..  Never mind that there is an entire branch of science devoted to Mammalogy, and that scientific documentation of species identifiers already exists.  I doubt (though I can’t be certain) that any members of the General Assembly are members of the American Society of Mammalogists, but perhaps they should be?

An open letter, and a promise, to Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell

Governor McDonnell, you have the power to stop this atrocity.   The government of Virginia is poised to retrogress to a patronizing, sanctimonious mass of social laws designed to step on women.

I urge you in the strongest possible terms to reject in whatever form the “personhood” bill and the “ultrasound” bill reach you.  Reject them outright.

I am so repulsed by the ideas espoused in these bills that I will make a promise.

I will promise, should these bills pass with or without your signature, that I will not cast a vote for a Republican in Virginia until they are repealed.  Nor will I cast a vote in a national election for any ticket with which your name or your endorsement is affiliated.

I will do what I can to get other women and others who value individual freedom to join me.

What our government bureaucracy rewards

I would hope civil libertarians have this on their scope:

“Finalists named for top federal workforce awards”

Note what the Washington Post considers noteworthy.  The first one they list is someone who will regulate what goes in to your body.  Now, I’m in no way defending smokers; though I quit over 10 years ago, I’m not the rabid anti-smoker, and don’t care what you do to yours.  What I do find reprehensible is a statement like “We have a fundamental authority now that no other country has.”  Fundamental?  Really?  What they have is an assumed authority based on a fundamental assumption that the government has a right to control you.  In my book. Deyton would be doing a great service if he advertised and educated, so people understand what they’re ingesting, and its effects.  From there, personal responsibility takes over.

I’ve not gone to the full list of nominees. In a couple of past years, some deserving folks have actually been recognized.  This year, I hope it’s not the one the Washington Post is cheering.

Asking the wrong question

I love pollsters.

That’s said only partly tongue-in-cheek.  They provide such amusement.

Today another asked the wrong question.

(Paraphrasing) The caller said “Sen. Harry Reid’s health care reform bill will raise taxes and costs and bring nothing new to the American consumer.  Do you agree Congress should defeat this bill and start anew at health care reform?”

You could almost hear the disappointment in the caller’s voice when I said “no”.

Not that I don’t want this bill defeated; I do.  I think it’s full of nonworkable “solutions” that only congressional staffers and special-interests (not necessarily even health-related special interests) could devise.

But Congress?  Come on.  The same organization that gave you TSA, which proved last weekend how well it can do its job?  The same organization that gave us the IRS, the Department of Education, the Department of Homeland Security, and two constitutionally ineligible Cabinet secretaries?  The organization that oversees the notoriously bureaucratic and inefficient Department of Veterans Affairs medical system?

Surely you jest.

Now, had the caller asked the right questions:

– Do you agree with the Senate’s Health Care proposal? (No)

– Do you think the Congress should start over? (A big YES, but that’s separate from “Do you thing Congress should start anew to devise a health care plan?”)

– Do you want Congress to pass a health care reform?  (Maybe, but I want to see what they define as “reform”.)

He might have had very, very different answers.

Rules don’t apply to politicians

Saturday, the DC area had a major snowstorm, with up to 23 inches of snow in most areas.  The Virginia Department of Transportation responded to over 2900 accidents; I don’t have figures on the District and Maryland.

Governors of both Maryland and Virginia asked people to stay off the roads.  DON’T GO OUT.  Nowhere in the warnings did I see “unless you’re a politician.”

But Barbara Mikulski and Benjamin Cardin of Maryland are proud of the fact they went to the Capitol for a vote that could have been taken later.  Jim Webb and Mark Warner “braved the elements” — (“Webb, who lives in Falls Church, used his Jeep to plow through the snow, his office said.“) To vote on a bill that no one but the politicians want — that is really the pet project of  a few senators (see how Sen Nelson held things up — and he is only one person.)

Braving the elements is not the honorable thing to do here, folks.

What’s the hurry?   Were the politicians so worried they’d lose a vote if they waited until streets were clear?  Maybe that should tell them something.

I guess THEY don’t have to listen to governors.  After all, they’re the elite.

Why women should abandon the Republican party in droves, immediately.

Talk about a disrespect toward women.  The national Republican party has directed its health insurance provider that it will  opt out of abortion coverage.  No one who works for the party can elect a perfectly legal procedure, making her own choice, and have it covered by insurance.  (Want to bet they can have breast implants, face lifts, or liposuction, though–things that make the little woman more attractive?)

Because, of course, the little women can’t make the choice for themselves.

Because the little women need to be “protected” from their own decisions.

Republican party chairman Michael Steel said “”Money from our loyal donors should not be used for this purpose. I don’t know why this policy existed in the past, but it will not exist under my administration. Consider this issue settled.”  This from the man who thinks Democrats’ power has gone to their heads.  ( He also said [about the NY-23 race] “If you don’t live in the district, you don’t vote there, your opinion doesn’t matter very much.”   Funny how that doesn’t apply if he isn’t a woman and didn’t fertilize that egg.)

Damn, I almost wish I worked for the Republican Party, just so I could publicly resign.

Opt-out my ass

Yeah.  People might, just might, be able to opt out of socialized medicine in the US.

Some people, that is.

But those of us who are “lucky” (our government doesn’t believe success comes from hard work, training, and good fortune) don’t get to “opt out” of paying for it.

Published in: on November 2, 2009 at 7:21 am  Leave a Comment