Burlington Derailed — The Continuing Story

27 September

Obama Fundamentally Transforms The Art of Lying


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07:16:06 - SPIKE - No comments

26 September

City Vehicles Going Home Each Night?


Spike,

Do any city employees still drive city owned vehicles home every night ? Looking for a way to save some money maybe this should change.

HH

05:45:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Don't Feed The Bears


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05:27:00 - SPIKE - No comments

25 September

One Change At A Time


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06:08:14 - SPIKE - No comments

24 September

Library Perspective


Spike:

The Hawkeye seems to forget the citizens of Burlington voted down the library at least twice and yet the library was built anyway against the wishes of Burlington’s voter’s and now the city being broke wants to cut the library funding. Like most people I could care less what Sioux City does or doesn’t do because they probably pay less taxes than does Des Moines County citizens anyway. Des Moines County obviously has the highest library taxes in the State of Iowa at about $55 per citizen versus something like $21 to $32 for every other town in the state and many of them have Saturday hours.

Des Moines County/Burlington also has in the area of 23% of the population living in poverty off the government at a cost of $80 to $100 million per year and one question I have is who picks up the $55 annual library tax for these 23% of the population, is it the landlords responsibility through real-estate taxes at $55 per head or are the taxpayers required to pay higher taxes so the 23% can have free library service? If people can move to Iowa with no source of income and live off the taxpayers who actually pays for their library fee of $55 per head?

Now, Sioux City is about four times the size of Burlington and here is the average library wages paid in that city for a librarian and it states that at least 50% of librarians in Sioux City will earn less than 50% of the Median wage. I wonder how they stack up to the Burlington librarian wages?

Librarian Salaries in Sioux City, IA | Salary.com

Nationwide, a director of a library averages $95,221. The library director in Davenport a city about four times the size of Burlington gets $91,000; so how does this match up with Burlington’s director in a city of 26,000 population at best?

I still haven’t heard of Burlington cutting any wages or benefits for our “Privileged Class City Employees” all of which earn about 45% more than private sector employees performing the same jobs. Until wages and benefits are reduced to private sector levels the city has done little to solve the budget problems.

By the way the voters in Burlington have no say in how much the city pays its employees either and it's actually dependent on how much the democrats decide their votes are worth in wages at election time and not the people they supposedly work for - the taxpayers. Until the city gets serious about its past wasteful ways and unfruitful dreams of grandeur there’s little hope anything will change in Burlington as it slowly sinks into a sea of red ink and crime.

The voters knew we couldn’t fund a Taj Mahal style library but one or two percent of the high brows in the population managed to raise enough to sucker the dimwits at city hall into believing the city could afford it when our demographics were changing form a working class of people to a government dependent class on top of very few livable wage jobs, if any. I find it very hard to believe people think they can raise a family at a fast food restaurant met to be staffed by teenagers looking to earn extra spending money while living at home but that’s what’s happening in Burlington and America these days.

I like the library myself although I knew Burlington couldn’t afford it but it was forced on the citizens and the only jobs it brought into town are the employees of the library at best. I don’t think anyone believes the library brought in livable wage jobs as was claimed it would back when it was voted down a couple of times. I don’t know of one new firm that came to Burlington because of the library, do you? It just brought in more public employees and higher taxes to pay them and keep the doors open.

I also question their reference to all the items checked out when I see people leaving the library with a stack of videos and four or five books at one time. I know how that works when they get home with the truck load of check outs and that is, much of it will just be returned without even looking at it. People have good intentions when checking out all the library material. But once home they never seem to have the time to read or view all the stuff and end up just returning much of it unviewed and unread.

A.S

11:57:37 - SPIKE - No comments

Dirty Library Windows - A Lingering Web of Blindness


Spike,

I've been reading about the financial woes of the local library.

The city council needs to get off their butts and motor down to the library for a 5-minute walk-thru.

Once the council gets past the plethora of budget cut signs at every opening in the foundation, they need to walk straight to the windows overlooking the bridge and river.

Every window is absolutely deplorable, heavily encrusted with cobwebs and spiders. The windows haven't been washed in months, if at all this year.

Then, the council needs to get back in their cars, got to city hall and pass an edict.

Edict:

If those windows aren't washed tomorrow, there will be a new library director the next! And if the library board doesn't respond, cut the budget $240,000 until the windows are clean. It's real simple.

The maintenance man with a damn garden hose and a ladder could knock that crud off in an hour. If the library director is trying to make a point, she has. She's overpaid and takes no pride in the building she is charged to oversee that we paid for along with the items stolen from the Historical Society.

This is absolutely stupid behavior. I have no sympathy for the library budget. I want somebody's head for not doing their damn government job when I work 2 jobs to pay my taxes.

PO

11:45:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Show Some Compassion


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05:18:00 - SPIKE - No comments

23 September

You Commoners Stay Put


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05:17:00 - SPIKE - No comments

20 September

Ass, What Ass?


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04:57:00 - SPIKE - No comments

19 September

CARSON: This is a moment that defines courage; the direction of our country is not good


Lawmakers can prove their backbone by defunding Obamacare

"Our divided government was formed by diligent men who had studied the history of governmental structures throughout the world and wanted to design a system that would not succumb to the temptation to continuously expand its size and scope at the expense of the people.

An important concept was the separation of powers with checks and balances among the three branches of government. It was a rather ingenious idea to invest each of the three branches of government with enough power to check unwarranted power grabs by the others.

There is, however, a breakdown in this system when officeholders are more concerned about their legacy or their re-election than they are about the proper functioning of government. Our Founders were most concerned about the possibility of the executive branch seizing power and disregarding constitutional constraints.

I suspect they would have been horrified to witness the manipulative and secretive strong-armed techniques utilized by the current administration to push through Obamacare. I’m sure they would also be shocked to see an administration that picks and chooses the laws it wishes to enforce, thereby diminishing the power of the legislative branch of government.

...They have the ability to separate the health care law from the rest of the federal budget and fund one without funding the other. In doing so, they need to make it abundantly clear that they are willing to fund the government and its essential functions, but they feel that Obamacare is detrimental to the future economic health of America."


05:33:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Another Flaccid Assault


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05:05:00 - SPIKE - No comments

18 September

Gun Laws Couldn't Prevent Navy Yard Shootings


Spike,

I see this morning's MSM filler piece from the Associated Press proclaims," Federal gun laws didn't block Navy Yard shootings."

Shouldn't the headline read, Federal gun laws couldn't prevent Navy Yard shootings?

Is it the beer can's fault or the drunk driver?

HM

13:03:27 - SPIKE - No comments

Clint Eastwood Was Right


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03:43:00 - SPIKE - No comments

17 September

Obama: "I Could Have Been That Guy"


Navy Yard Shooter

Teen on Bike Murders 71-yr-old man

Which One?

12:42:14 - SPIKE - No comments

A Receding Locust Host


Coupled With Journalism School Decline, There's Hope!

Spike,

"Since 2010, the college, which is located in the Boyd Law Building, has seen a roughly 24 percent decrease in incoming class size, in comparison with a more than 38 percent national decline in total enrollment, according to the Law School Admission Council."

The prospect for fewer locust exiting Law Schools is indeed good news.

GW

11:01:05 - SPIKE - No comments

Navy Yard Shooter Emblematic of Background Check Failure


Spike:

Again, we have a nut case running around free, gaining security clearance from the government to work in a secure area going on a shooting spree that killed 12 and wounding something like 13 more.

A person who managed to get a shotgun and a pistol through security in one of the top Navy buildings in the United States. This clown had a history of violence with guns and yet he was given a clearance to one of our nation’s top facilities just a couple of miles from the congress and about four miles from the White House. It just goes to show how messed up our government is when it can’t turn up insane behavior during a background check that was common knowledge available for the asking from local police agencies where this guy had lived in the past.

I wonder how many people with active insane behavior are working in our government through the lack of proper security checks and have the ability to enter secure areas while carrying items in without being checked. This guy had already shot the tires on a car and fired a gun into a neighbors apartment and had been arrested twice, where is government competence in job performance?

Sounds like something is really wrong with our overpaid and non-functional federal government.

A.S.

10:58:34 - SPIKE - No comments

If I Only Had a Brain


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08:02:50 - SPIKE - No comments

16 September

Obama's Foreign Policy Faceplant


I’m less concerned about style points” on Syria

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08:22:10 - SPIKE - No comments

14 September

Find Out


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06:09:00 - SPIKE - No comments

13 September

City Problems Are Compounding Beyond Shylock Rates


Spike:

Many times you will read about a private sector business freezing pay increases or reducing pay and benefits in order to save the company from bankruptcy and I have yet to hear the local Burlington government even mention any of this in their struggle to get out of the hole that poor government decision making got the city into in the first place.

In these dire times the city had better cut the pay of all city workers at least 15% which will still leave them earning more than the local private sector when doing work requiring the same skills and responsibilities. They could also knock off the increase in pay based on nothing more than longevity that is a driving factor for government workers earning such high pay relative to the private sector in Iowa.

The city could raise the rent or sell off that house it owns in Perkins Park that doesn’t pay any taxes since its city property that’s rented to a city employee for a low rent to say the least, relative to other rentals of the same class in Burlington.

They could turn off the lights on the Great River Bridge that really aren’t for anything other than show that cost the taxpayers several thousand’s per year for nothing. The city could just turn then on for special occasions if at all.

The RecPlex has always been a source of hemorrhage for taxpayer money to keep the doors open and after ten years or so has yet to get into the black. For many years it was approaching $100,000 per year in bailouts by taxpayers. This property should be sold off and operated by a private company that can turn a profit and pay much lower management and wage cost than government pays for doing the same job. The taxpayer could see some much needed relief should the RecPlex go into private management and ownership. We could also collect taxes off it should it go private.

Burlington demographics has changed over the past several years and no longer has the people with the skills needed to attract good industrial jobs or for that matter any livable wage jobs at all; so as a consequence our tax base has decreased and there are probably more people living off the remaining few taxpayers than ever before that was shown to be costing somewhere between $80 million and $100 million per year in Des Moines County, as shown in the Social Assistance Research Report of 2013 and published by the Greater Burlington Partnership. By the way a livable wage job in Des Moines County should be $18.39 for one (1) adult and one (1) child and for two (2) adults and three (3) children it should be around $20.80. This information can be viewed at: Living Wage Calculator - Living Wage Calculation for Des Moines County, Iowa I wonder how many of the TIF deals pay a living wage such as shown in the Calculator above.

The library that was voted down twice by taxpayers has been shown to be the most costly in the entire state of Iowa. I’m sure the old library also held that title long before the new one was built. The old library was costing each citizen something in the area of $45 dollars per year and the new one is costing like $55 per citizen per year while most of the state pays something in the area of $21 to $30 per citizen with many of them open seven (7) days per week. There are certain people in Burlington that have plenty of money and force projects through the city council with big donations and other sources that end up costing the working people via taxes to support it through increased taxes once the project is built and the library is just one example of how this city works around the voters.

The city management should also look at all the jobs currently on the books and start cutting the ones that really make no sense or don’t affect the operation of the city in a safe manner. Always cutting fire and police are a ploy to gain taxpayer sympathy when there are less important positions that could be cut that don’t affect the safety of the citizens.

The city could cut out all travel and out of town seminars and training classes that are usually a waste of money in most cases since traveling around has not gained Burlington much in the way of jobs or relief from the taxes where Des Moines County ranks in the top ten for Iowa. They’ve not helped the city get out of this constant “Hand Out” mentality as a method of paying for the many dreams of grandeur that got us into this constant struggle through living above our means.

What about the water park out at the Pzazz complex, are taxes being collected on the water slide and that part of the city half owned establishment? Who is paying the taxes on it? City management could also get out of the water slide business because I doubt it is earning it’s keep for the taxpayers anyway because none of the city business ventures pays off for tax payers.

How many times has the city talked to business owners and industrial firms in this area to see how they cut expenses? I can guess probably never because Burlington usually shoots from the hip and always gets burnt in their business ventures and/or dreams of grandeur constantly losing money through ignorance of management and excessive wages and benefits.

A.S.

06:07:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Charles Krauthammer: ‘Obama Has Been Played’





Syndicated columnist Charles Krauthammer slammed President Barack Obama’s “epically incompetent” foreign policy on Thursday, one day after Russian President Vladimir Putin published a critical op-ed in the New York Times.

“Here is the president of the greatest democracy on Earth, being lectured — insultingly, really — in an American newspaper about human rights, about international law, about the protection of the elderly and children in wartime.” Krauthammer said.

He said it only makes it more embarrassing that the lecture came from a “KGB thug.”

“What we are seeing here is Putin so confident of himself…that he could actually engage in this,” Krauthammer added. “It’s an index of how, sort of, Obama has been played and continues to be right now in Geneva.”

05:23:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Both Are Filled with Bull


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04:59:00 - SPIKE - No comments

12 September

Begin the We're Broke Beguine





Spike,

It did not take Burlington's City Hall long to strike up the band. The dance of unemployed cops and firemen has begun.

According to the Sept. 10th Ad Vertiser, "The city's financial woes this year began with the failure of the franchise fee ( a new tax), but they don't end there. The 3 percent fee was estimate to generate $600,000 to $800,000 in new revenue (taxes) a year."

Wrong.

The city's financial woes have been a long time coming. Burlington has been shrinking for decades. Opportunity is to be found elsewhere. Previous city councils have largely dodged the issue of necessary reductions relative to resources.

Worse yet was a recent reign of ruin under a city council who bowed to run out of town City Manager Bruce Slagle. Drunks and dullards figured there was a pot gold under some prehistoric real estate deed applied to the railroad closing its Burlington Shops.

The bund of the brainless decided something bold was necessary after a federal judge ruled their Lionel lunacy, "Without merit." They decided to play Donald Trump at Agency and Roosevelt. With Senator Courtney's assistance in the Iowa Senate, an eminent domain under estimate of potential has cost Burlington millions.

"$600,000 to $800,000 in revenue a year," what is the empty lot Manor Mall costing local taxpayers a year in interest and principal?

The guilty local single political party hacks, drunks and union thugs responsible are largely gone. The current council has a mess to deal with. Another set of old familiar tunes to pass another tax has started with public safety layoffs.

Sell the Wrecked Plex. It has never paid as promised and never will.

Flint Hills is a money loser. Raise the greens fees to break even. If golfers bulk and go elsewhere, sell the real estate.

Stop putting rouge on a rotting corpse. No more money for whatever the Downtown Partners ask. Quiet railroad crossings downtown was another luxury we could ill afford. No public capital should be forwarded to the Capital Less Theater.

Examine every aspect of the budget. Essential services and whatever infrastructure necessary should be given priority, but none should be exempt.

We did this to ourselves. We elected the drunk, the ignorant and the incompetent to govern. Spread the misery.

Smashing a few essential feet with a sledge hammer rather than stepping on a lot of toes should be a no go.

Porter Kalt

04:47:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Foreign Policy Refresher - We Told You Obama Had No Foreign Policy Experience




Obama Foreign Policy Blunders Fueled by Unchecked Ideology Outlined Clearly for Us

Hillary Clinton Isn't Wrong to Bail

But How Did Ol' Spike Recognize Obama's Abject Failure in Foreign Policy Before He Was Sworn In?*


"The simple reality is that Obama’s few foreign policy successes have come in cases where he can delegate responsibility to the U.S. armed forces--even if that means evading Congress, as he did in Libya. The true story of Obama’s failures--and his continuing ambition for a humbler America on the world stage--is told at the margins, beyond the media spotlight, where his appointees and ideas have enjoyed a freer hand. "

*Answer: Because Obama was a total success in forestry. "All ideas are good on the leafy campus." Andrea 'Tarantula' Tantaros

Obama never did anything other than vote "Here" a bunch of times and shield the world from his college financial records. He has no real experience running a lemonade stand or doing anything else on a large scale.

Spike


04:06:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Broke Back Donkey


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02:51:00 - SPIKE - No comments

11 September

Never Forget


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04:56:00 - SPIKE - No comments

10 September

Time for Calamari


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02:46:26 - SPIKE - No comments

09 September

Bear Hunting With A Community Organizer


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Spike:

In the best interests of the U.S. and the global community as a whole, let’s deploy Obama, Kerry, McCain and Congress to Syria immediately, and let them put their boots on the ground!

P.O.

08:45:45 - SPIKE - No comments

06 September

But I'm The King! Valerie, Come Here!


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04:54:59 - SPIKE - No comments

05 September

Run for the Goal of Running Burlington


Just Call Me Mayor


Spike,

"Authorities say a woman trying to get onto the field before the University of Iowa’s opening season football game had a blood alcohol content that was more than four times the legal limit to drive.

The University’s Department of Public Safety says 22-year-old Samantha Lynne Goudie, of Iowa City, and formally of Burlington, tried to enter the playing field about an hour before the game against Northern Illinois University on Saturday. She was taken to the prisoner staging area at Kinnick Stadium."

A hometown girl has gained world wide fame. The young University of Iowa student, who claims she gets good grades, blew a .341 for law enforcement.

Hopefully a hangover of bad publicity after a go for the goal at Kinnick will not deter from future goals. Ms. Goudie should complete her studies and consider a return to Burlington.

It is true Burlington offers few private sector career opportunities for those with a college degree. The public sector is a different matter. Government jobs are available.

Unlike some, Ms. Goudie still a chance to learn from her mistakes and follow through. A degree from an accredited institute of learning like the University of Iowa is worth far more than one from Ell U.

Ms. Goudie could end up being the next Mayor of Burlington.

Olde Hawk

05:46:00 - SPIKE - No comments

Obama: 'I Didn't Set a Red Line' on Syria



No Line Here, Move Along


Spike:

I think we should start calling Obama the “Weasel” because he’s now trying to Weasel out of any fault about the crossing of the red line in Syria; so now it’s the worlds doing and not the messiah’s.

Obama is a typical government employee because he never accepts any responsibility for his below average decision making abilities nor his constant incompetence or even displaying any sort of accountability for his administration that is running amok and leaderless.

A.S.

05:00:00 - SPIKE - No comments

He's No Casey


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04:51:00 - SPIKE - No comments

04 September

ReDo


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09:58:59 - SPIKE - No comments

03 September

Burlington Daily Worker


Spike:

The Burlington Daily Worker newspaper started off its daily anonymous editorial with the statement, “Trayvon Martin is hardly the only teenager to be denied justice in death.” I would like the Daily Worker to explain just what the hell that statement was supposed to mean since the person accused of but acquitted of killing him was cleared of all charges by a jury and not a judge.

The case the Daily Worker was indicating in its editorial never mentioned anything about a jury being involved in this case. Apparently the judge based his decision on what he thought was right in lieu of a jury deciding guilt or innocence; so the Socialist editorial staff down at the Daily Worker has decided to follow its social left wing agenda to the letter and claim the judge was wrong and off his rocker and Montana should rise up and throw him out of his judgeship.

I don’t recall the Burlington Daily Worker ever castigating Al “The Mouth” Sharpton for all the people he wrongfully accused of racial wrong doings when most if not all of his accusations were proven to be wrong. Al is one who makes his living off the race card and has wrongfully played his race card on numerous occasions to gain fame and money with little to no concern for the people he’s tried to destroy along the way. Al’s like a rat because he always shows up when there’s some trash to rummage through and the possibility of lining his pockets off it, right or wrong.

What is printed in the local Daily Worker is nothing more than their opinion and should be taken with a grain of salt and nothing more, it’s just an opinion by a person or group of persons pushing a political correct agenda and nothing more.

Here’s a good description of The Daily Worker and its political correctness: “Political correctness is a doctrine, fostered by a delusional, illogical minority, and rapidly promoted by mainstream media, which holds forth the proposition that it is entirely possible to pick up a turd by the clean end."

A.S.

02:03:50 - SPIKE - No comments

Hawkeye Advocates 50-100% Pay Increase for Its Employees


Spike,

I think MSM's Dale Alison bumped his head on the toilet at the Sombrero Friday night.

Alison's column says it's time for everyone's pay to increase - some as much as 100%. It's the progressive way!

How would that work down on South Main Street? Newspapers would cost $4/day - $8/Sunday?

Newspapers are dying and drying and that only perpetuates the false Jimmy Olson-based business model. Publisher Steve Delaney and his evil corporate Kansas carpetbaggers have bled this region dry for years on the backs of the freshly minted Jimmy Olson's that keep getting germinated in Iowa City. Now that the journalism school grads are fewer and fewer, the recycled old shoes get worn longer without a pay increase.

How about it Dale? Give everyone at MSM at 50% raise. Help the country spend its way to oblivion.

Rocket Scientist

02:00:00 - SPIKE - No comments

See You At The 1st Tee!


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01:58:08 - SPIKE - No comments

02 September

I Will Give Syria My Full Attention


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"President Obama and Vice-President Biden held a rare press event Saturday in the Rose Garden to address the escalating tensions with Syria. President Obama said he was convinced Syrian President Bashir Assad had ordered a chemical weapon attack on his citizens and that the US, and the world community, must act in response. Obama called on Congress to authorize a military attack against Syria. A new foreign policy crisis now faces the US.

After the press event, Obama and Biden went golfing."

12:59:07 - SPIKE - No comments