MoDot Spends $111k on Unneeded Signs

Click image for video

Even though the existing signs posted around the state which welcomed drivers were 20-years-old, they were, as Elliot Davis notes, perfectly fine. Davis reports that 66 new “Welcome to Missouri” signs cost $111k.

But MoDot had to get them some of them thur new signs! It probably created about two jobs per sign for as long as it took to post the sign.

Instead of posting ads on Craigslist advertising for “activists” to protest in favor of HCR, perhaps the government can now post ads advertising the need for individuals to stand on various bridges and highway shoulders holding a sign made with materials purchased at Office Depot. Jobs created and economy stimulated! JEANYUS.

Why yes, Virginia, this is the same MoDot that folks just voted to be equally responsible with their money concerning city transit.

Ladies’ Night Now Illegal in MN

I blame feminism. Hey, equality! And Bush, just because.

It’s a bastion of bar culture: “Ladies’ Night,” staged to attract female customers by cutting their drink prices and cover charges.

It’s also illegal gender discrimination, according to the Minnesota Department of Human Rights.

The department charged this week that by having ladies’ nights, five Twin Cities establishments denied men the right to “full and equal enjoyment” of their businesses.

“Gender-based pricing violates the [state] Human Rights Act,” Commissioner James Kirkpatrick said in a statement.

Shouldn’t a business choose what promotions they wish to implement without interference from the government?

Sheryl Crow Bashes Tea Party

Yawn. Further up in the article Crow talks about how no one takes to the street, is reminded of the tea party, backpedals earlier clueless statement re: taking to the street by stating that tea partiers are stupid. I liked this the best, though:

Later in her June Glamour magazine interview with Couric, Crow slammed Karl Rove and other conservatives for harping on her toilet paper idea. She claimed this was done “[j]ust to discredit me and to make me look silly.”

Don’t worry, Crow. I don’t think anyone could further affect how silly you are already.

No More Eggs by the Dozen: EU Micromanages British Sales

File this under one of the most ridiculous egregious examples of big government micromanagement that I’ve ever seen. British food merchants are now forbidden to sell products by the number (i.e. a dozen eggs, rolls, et al.) and are told they must sell by weight only. It’s also forbidden to put the weight AND the number of items on the package. Why? Because the EU is crazy. Hi, welcome to big government.

Until now, Britain has been exempt from EU regulations that forbid the selling of goods by number. But last week MEPs voted to end Britain’s deal despite objections from UK members.

The new rules will mean that instead of packaging telling shoppers a box contains six eggs, it will show the weight in grams of the eggs inside, for example 372g.

Or that a bag of white rolls has 322g inside instead of half a dozen. The rules will not allow both the weight and the quantity to be displayed.


The move could cost retailers millions of pounds because of changes they will have to make to packaging and labelling, as well as the extra burden of weighing each box of food before it is put on sale.

The cost is likely to be passed on to shoppers through higher grocery bills.

The cost that merchants will be forced to incur complying with this law will be astronomical. Yes, at a time when the world economy is teetering on the edge, let’s make it more difficult for families to afford food! Let’s raise the cost of their groceries as a way to help them. If you told me that Johnny Depp’s Mad Hatter was writing these regulations I would be completely unsurprised.

Look how much time they have on their hands:

The new labelling row is the latest in a long line of European Union food policy scandals.

The EU passed a directive in 1994 ruling that top-of-the-range bananas had to be ‘free from malformation or abnormal curvature of the fingers’. The directive was ridiculed as a symbol of bureaucratic excess in Brussels.

In 1988, it ruled that top-of-the-range cucumbers must bend by only 10mm per 10cm in a directive designed to help packaging and transport.

In 1979, another directive ruled that carrots should be termed as fruits, as the Portuguese made jam out of them.

In 2003, a threatened European ban on smoky-bacon crisps was averted at the last minute when MEPs forced through amendments after a backlash from the British public.

Finger-curved bananas? Ghastly! But a ban on bacon crisps? ATROCITY. David Cameron will meet his first test as prime minister going toe-to-toe with the EU over this.

If cap-and-tax passes we’ll face a similar intrusion.

NRA Makes a Deal Against Free Speech

I don’t like the NRA’s strategy of ensuring its own longevity at the risk of other freedoms, which they seem to be forgetting about.

NRO yesterday on the NRA’s involvement:

Politico and others are reporting that the NRA has reached a deal to withdraw its opposition to the bill in exchange for an exemption for the NRA from its disclosure provisions.


This exemption will not apply to small, less powerful 501(c)(4) organizations, which will be hit the hardest by the onerous, burdensome, and expensive disclosure requirements of the DISCLOSE Act, but it will apply to the large, well-funded and well-connected NRA.

So, the NRA may end up providing the lobbying grease that allows this noxious and partisan piece of legislation to slide through the House, something that I seriously doubt most of the individual members of the NRA (who are strong believers in the First Amendment as well as the Second) would agree with.

From Politico:

House Democrats have offered to exempt the National Rifle Association from a sweeping campaign-finance bill, removing a major obstacle in the push to roll back the Supreme Court’s Citizens United ruling.

The NRA had objected to some of the strict financial disclosure provisions that Democrats have proposed for corporations and politically active nonprofits and that had kept moderate, pro-gun Democrats from backing the legislation.

But if the NRA signs off on the deal, the bill could come to the House floor as early as this week. The NRA said it would not comment until specific legislative language is revealed.

An NRA official also noted that the group would not be supporting the bill but would not actively oppose it if the deal with the Democratic leadership holds up.

Regulation of free speech means that the speech isn’t free. You can’t cherry-pick which rights you want to support or the depth to which you are willing to support those rights and base it all on the litmus test of your personal ideology, as is the motivation behind the DISCLOSE act. Free speech didn’t begin with the mind of protecting popular, sanitized speech but speech that is diverse and thought-provoking.

The legislation in question is designed to restore more campaign finance rules in the wake of last year’s Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission decision, which removed prohibitions on corporations and unions running TV ads opposing or backing candidates in the run-up to an election.

Democratic leaders fear the Citizens United decision could open the floodgates for corporate money to flow into this year’s midterm elections, which they believe would favor Republican interests.

So instead of working harder to incur favor with the interests they suspect of supporting republicans they’ll further isolate those interests by infringing their free speech, government control as a way to stifle private sector preference for their opposition. That’s how the left levels the playing field: they simply go tell teacher, in this case Uncle Sam, with the hope that government regulation will make up for their own inadequacies. The problem is that everyone then suffers from their inadequacies due to governmental suppression. This sounds more in like with the USSR than a free United States.

Bloggers would also be negatively impacted due to the DISCLOSE act. Reason:

At a House Administration Committee hearing last Tuesday, Patton Boggs attorney William McGinley explained that the sloppy statutory language in the “DISCLOSE Act” would extend the FEC’s control over broadcast communications to all “covered communications,” including the blogosphere.


A section of the DISCLOSE Act would exempt traditional media outlets from coordination regulations, but the exemption does not include bloggers, only “a communication appearing in a news story, commentary, or editorial distributed through the facilities of any broadcasting station, newspaper, magazine or other periodical publication…”

Ed Morrissey:

If the Democrats in Congress wanted to ensure that the FEC would not investigate political speech by bloggers, they would have written their exemptions to include bloggers instead of just traditional media outlets. The purposeful lack of exemption for bloggers looks ominous indeed — and could be used to harass smaller, unfunded bloggers out of the realm of political debate.

Regulated speech isn’t free speech and if this is something that the NRA wishes to support then I cannot in good faith support the NRA any longer.

*Editing to add: the NRA fails to realize that all freedoms are worthy of equal protection. Without free speech, who will stand up for the NRA? Are they really so naive to believe that if they give this much now no more will be taken from them in the future? This little deal is tantamount to mafia protection.

**Another: Some are arguing to support the NRA simply because it took a long time to build and is well-established. A system isn’t sacred. A system is only as worthy as the goodness of its action and this isn’t good.