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Old 04-11-2013, 07:44 AM  
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Conservatives find Government does help them earn money

Wyoming locals pick up tab for Yellowstone snowplowing
Sequester cuts idled federal plows and threatened the park's opening day. Even though most here favor limited government, this isn't quite what they had in mind.


By Mark Z. Barabak, Los Angeles Times
April 6, 2013, 7:00 p.m.
CODY, Wyo. — For many, the federal budget ax that fell last month has meant a few nicks here and there. For Joe Kondelis, it's sliced a lot deeper.

After stewing for days, the 53-year-old opened his wallet and delivered a $2,000 check to the Cody Chamber of Commerce to help pay for snowplowing at Yellowstone National Park. It wasn't easy. Cash is scarce once Yellowstone shuts down for the winter.

But after automatic spending cuts idled the National Park Service plows and threatened to delay opening day for two weeks — two weeks that could cost his beer distributorship $100,000 in sales — Kondelis felt he had no choice.

"You live and die by the tourist market," he said beneath a framed picture of the Budweiser logo, which loomed overhead like a portrait of the family patriarch.

Fearing an economic disaster — people planning their vacations sometimes hear just the words "closed" and "Yellowstone" and there goes the whole summer — the chambers in Cody and Jackson Hole raised $170,000 to pay for the state to step in and fire up its snowplows. The work began last week and, barring a major storm, the park's east and south entrances will open on time in early May.

The story could end there, a happy tale of small-town pluck. Many in Cody are proud of how the community of fewer than 10,000 rallied to save the tourist season from sequestration, as the $85 billion in cuts are called.

"It kicked us right in the pants," said Mike Darby, a partner in the Irma Hotel, which was built in 1902 by "Buffalo Bill" Cody himself. "And thank God we rose up and kicked them back. We did."

But a weave of contradictions surrounds the episode, reflecting the tension between self-sufficiency and codependence, between these Westerners' stated desire for a smaller, more limited government and reliance on the services that people have come to expect from far off, little-loved Washington, D.C.

"We all want to cut the deficit but don't want to sacrifice the lifestyle that money makes possible," said Warren Murphy, a retired clergyman and one of the few avowed progressives in this deeply conservative part of a deeply conservative state. "Sequester is just a small sample of what you get."

Dan Wenk, the superintendent of Yellowstone, is the face of the federal government around Cody and his popularity underscores the truth that it's harder to dislike a neighbor than some faceless bureaucrat inside the Beltway. When the cuts hit, Wenk had to slice $1.75 million from his $35-million budget and do it with the fiscal year just about half-over.

He trimmed his payroll. He scaled back travel and training programs. Finally, he decided to idle the Park Service snowplows for two weeks, saving $30,000 a day and leaving it to the spring thaw to help clear more than 300 miles of roadway. The idea, Wenk said, was to ensure there was money left to keep Yellowstone open throughout the peak summer months. "We cut the budget in a way we thought was absolutely the least impactful," he said.

Locals were nearly unanimous in their praise for Wenk and the way he worked with community leaders and state officials to find a solution that got the plows rolling. It is a lesson, they said, that Washington should heed.

"We just talked it through," said Claudia Wade, marketing director for the county tourism office. "Everybody came to the table and said, 'How can we work this out?' Not, "Whose fault is it?'"

There are limits, however, to that goodwill. Wade and others insist the fundraising drive, or Park Service bailout, or whatever people choose to call it, was a one-time thing. "It was an important point that we'd only do it this time," said Scott Balyo, executive director of the Cody chamber.

Even so, many worry about precedent. Kondelis, who works alongside his wife and two sons in their beverage business, explained why he contributed: "I believe in this community and we need to step forward like everybody else. But my biggest issue was … the politics isn't going to change. So next year, they're going to say, 'Oh, you guys figured it out, you guys came to the table, so this cut was good.'"

The relationship between Washington and the West has always been fraught. The region's proud creed of independence ignores the crucial role the federal government plays in its prosperity. At the same time, few things grate more than the presumption that a distant landlord can better manage the land than the people who live on it. (The federal government controls about half of the acreage in Wyoming.)

People in Cody are used to dealing with natural disasters, like the wildfires or heavy snow that occasionally close Yellowstone and sucker-punch the economy. But this crisis felt artificial, man-made, and thus avoidable.

It's not that residents don't want to reduce the deficit. Washington needs "to grow the economy, not the government," said Jay Linderman, who owns an Italian restaurant on Cody's main drag and grudgingly gave $200 to pay for plowing. What rankles locals is the indiscriminate nature of the sequester, which cut programs across the board without weighing individual merits.

But therein lies the perennial rub: Cuts that are welcomed in the abstract are not always appreciated when they hit home. And everything the government does, however small, touches somebody.

"If it's a national park, it shouldn't be our burden to operate," said Bob Brandt, manager of the Cody Hotel, which sits on the main highway to Yellowstone, about 50 miles away. His business contributed $2,500 to the snowplow fund.

If not entitlement, locals at least share a feeling that Washington has obligations it mustn't slough off, even as spending declines.

"You pay your taxes to get certain services," said Bruce Eldredge, executive director of the Buffalo Bill Historical Center, a world-class museum in the center of town, which delivered a $10,000 check to the chamber. "We would, I think, probably argue as a community that we pay our federal taxes to make sure the park is open at a specific time."

For his part, Wenk assumes the cuts made under sequester represent "the new normal." Yellowstone's budget has been shrinking for the last few years, even as the number of visitors has grown. Looking ahead to next year, Wenk said everything — including the snowplowing schedule — is on the table.

The state, meantime, has seized on the fundraising publicity to get an early jump on its summer tourism campaign. As a crowd cheered and cameras recorded the scene last week, big yellow tractors began chewing through the snow, bearing placards with the promotional theme "Yellowstone or Bust."

From: http://www.latimes.com/news/nationwo...,5412062.story

/So I'm supposed to feel bad for the guy who had to spend $2,000 of his own money to help guarantee $100,000 in sales? Yeah, it sure does suck that the Federal Government wasn't there to help out that guys profit margin with my money.
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Old 04-19-2013, 08:07 AM   #76
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Originally Posted by BucEyedPea View Post
Well, if some places are union places that require membership then that is controlling workers.
Forced membership is just control.
Again, you guys know nothing about construction unions in MO. It is straight up laughable.

Union construction workers are not hired permanently by companies. Union construction workers are employed through the Union office.

When a construction company in MO bids on a wins a project, if they decide to go union, then they call up the Union office. They say, "we need x number of labor's" The union office then notifies it's current unemployed members.

Therefore, a construction company cannot be controlled by union workers. A company decides on each project whether to hire union. Union offices are completely independent from Construction companies.

Also, what is it that you conservatives say about low paying jobs? If you don't like the job, just more to a different one. Its a free country. You can't force someone to join a union because you can just find another job.
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Old 04-19-2013, 08:08 AM   #77
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Originally Posted by patteeu View Post
No, I raised a possibility and asked if you had given it any consideration.



No, you cut and pasted a prepared set of talking points.
If its a talking point you should be able to find evidence that refutes it. The fact you have not I'll take to mean you cannot refute it. Therefore it might be close to a fact.
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Old 04-19-2013, 08:25 AM   #78
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Originally Posted by Loneiguana View Post
If its a talking point you should be able to find evidence that refutes it. The fact you have not I'll take to mean you cannot refute it. Therefore it might be close to a fact.


On the bright side, that post comes from your own head and is not just a cut-and-paste talking point.

On the somewhat less bright side, it makes no sense.
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Old 04-19-2013, 09:12 AM   #79
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Originally Posted by Loneiguana View Post
Again, you guys know nothing about construction unions in MO. It is straight up laughable.

Union construction workers are not hired permanently by companies. Union construction workers are employed through the Union office.

When a construction company in MO bids on a wins a project, if they decide to go union, then they call up the Union office. They say, "we need x number of labor's" The union office then notifies it's current unemployed members.

Therefore, a construction company cannot be controlled by union workers. A company decides on each project whether to hire union. Union offices are completely independent from Construction companies.

Also, what is it that you conservatives say about low paying jobs? If you don't like the job, just more to a different one. Its a free country. You can't force someone to join a union because you can just find another job.

And you still can't read since I said nothing about construction unions but unions in general which implies union shops. In fact I even narrowed it down to "if some places are union places that require membership." What I said is true. You strawman things because you can't refute what was actually posted. You have to restate a different claim and then take that down.

Your game is up. We know how you play it. Intellectually dishonest.
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Old 04-19-2013, 09:40 AM   #80
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Originally Posted by BucEyedPea View Post
And you still can't read since I said nothing about construction unions but unions in general which implies union shops. In fact I even narrowed it down to "if some places are union places that require membership." What I said is true. You strawman things because you can't refute what was actually posted. You have to restate a different claim and then take that down.

Your game is up. We know how you play it. Intellectually dishonest.
I don't think he's consciously doing these things (but I agree that he is doing them). I just don't think he really understands why his responses don't make logical sense.
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Old 04-19-2013, 09:42 AM   #81
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Originally Posted by patteeu View Post
I don't think he's consciously doing these things (but I agree that he is doing them). I just don't think he really understands why his responses don't make logical sense.
Ok, then I'll use another argument I have used with some Progressives. They can't process certain ideas of information. They just can't discern similarities and differences but make things all the same.
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Old 04-19-2013, 09:53 AM   #82
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Ok, then I'll use another argument I have used with some Progressives. They can't process certain ideas of information. They just can't discern similarities and differences but make things all the same.
That seems more like what's going on here.
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Old 04-20-2013, 09:17 AM   #83
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Originally Posted by BucEyedPea View Post
And you still can't read since I said nothing about construction unions but unions in general which implies union shops. In fact I even narrowed it down to "if some places are union places that require membership." What I said is true. You strawman things because you can't refute what was actually posted. You have to restate a different claim and then take that down.

Your game is up. We know how you play it. Intellectually dishonest.
We have only talked about Construction unions. Please pay attention.

As for your broad claim, you didn't at all counter my claim that a union cannot control members because you are free in this country to find another job.
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Old 04-20-2013, 09:21 AM   #84
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What is funny is neither one of you has actually responded to my claims, counter those claims, or provided any type of information to back up your own views.

But continue your circle jerk
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Old 04-20-2013, 09:25 AM   #85
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Originally Posted by patteeu View Post


On the bright side, that post comes from your own head and is not just a cut-and-paste talking point.

On the somewhat less bright side, it makes no sense.

Yes, there is something wrong with copy and pasting information that backs up your view. That is wrong.

If you don't like what I posted, then prove it wrong. Don't whine like a child.
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Old 04-20-2013, 09:37 AM   #86
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Originally Posted by Loneiguana View Post
What is funny is neither one of you has actually responded to my claims, counter those claims, or provided any type of information to back up your own views.

But continue your circle jerk
The haven't really been your claims though. They've been regurgitated propaganda and it lost my interest.
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Old 04-20-2013, 09:53 AM   #87
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The haven't really been your claims though. They've been regurgitated propaganda and it lost my interest.
Right. So a claim that a Union work place is safer than a non-union work place, a claim that many real life people would have an interest in, is propaganda. Why? Because it doesn't fit your work view? Grow up.

You are the one who claimed, without any type of evidence to back it up, that Union could be a reason that MO infrastructure needs help. I countered that claim by citing studies that show union construction sites are overall safer, therefore less expensive, therefore unions are not a reason for poorly funded state infrastructure.
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Old 04-20-2013, 10:27 AM   #88
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Originally Posted by Loneiguana View Post
Right. So a claim that a Union work place is safer than a non-union work place, a claim that many real life people would have an interest in, is propaganda. Why? Because it doesn't fit your work view? Grow up.

You are the one who claimed, without any type of evidence to back it up, that Union could be a reason that MO infrastructure needs help. I countered that claim by citing studies that show union construction sites are overall safer, therefore less expensive, therefore unions are not a reason for poorly funded state infrastructure.
The reason I don't bother arguing with you is because you drift all over the place from one facet of the topic to another apparently without realizing it (see BEP's post 81), because you cut and paste long-form propaganda that's boring to read through trying to find the relevant point if it even has one, and because you constantly create strawman arguments even though I don't think you realize you're doing it.

For example, the post I just quoted:

1. You say I made a claim without evidence. Reality: I asked a question and asked if you had ever investigated the possibiity.

2. The "claim" involved the impact of unions on the quality, cost, and speed of infrastructure construction (it was following on from the good, fast, and cheap discussion that led to it). What was your response? Worker safety!! WTF? That had virtually nothing to do with the previous line of discussion, but you see it as a rebuttal to a claim that was never made. Your game of whack-a-mole propaganda is exhausting and I'm bored with it.
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Old 04-20-2013, 11:17 AM   #89
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We have only talked about Construction unions. Please pay attention.
You don't tell me what I can or cannot add to the discussion. You were saying unions didn't control workers. I pointed out how and where they do.

You progs think you're so sophisticated when you try to censor people.

Quote:
As for your broad claim, you didn't at all counter my claim that a union cannot control members because you are free in this country to find another job.
Wrong. Because in this case they violate rights by using coercion, which is always wrong. Of course, this is something else you progs love besides the force and violence of the state.
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Old 04-20-2013, 11:19 AM   #90
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Originally Posted by patteeu View Post
The reason I don't bother arguing with you is because you drift all over the place from one facet of the topic to another apparently without realizing it (see BEP's post 81), because you cut and paste long-form propaganda that's boring to read through trying to find the relevant point if it even has one, and because you constantly create strawman arguments even though I don't think you realize you're doing it.

For example, the post I just quoted:

1. You say I made a claim without evidence. Reality: I asked a question and asked if you had ever investigated the possibiity.

2. The "claim" involved the impact of unions on the quality, cost, and speed of infrastructure construction (it was following on from the good, fast, and cheap discussion that led to it). What was your response? Worker safety!! WTF? That had virtually nothing to do with the previous line of discussion, but you see it as a rebuttal to a claim that was never made. Your game of whack-a-mole propaganda is exhausting and I'm bored with it.
Which could be summed up as an inability to communicate. This includes overwhelming with data.
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