Tag Archives: New Jersey

Plastic Bags

New Jersey instituted its single use plastic bag ban on 4 May. While the state government passed the law restricting my consumer options (and for that deserves criticisim), the plea to do so came not from environmental groups but rather from retailers. Grocery stores can save lots of money if they do not “give away” bags to customers. Retailers lobbied the state government for this ban.

As one who cherishes freedom, I am not in favor of this legislation.

On a practical note, the ban doesn’t serve its purpose from government’s point of view. It argues the environmental impact of single use bags. We have all seen, I suspect, a bag here or there blowing in the wind. Obviously, I do not condone that.

I along with everyone else I know, however, do not use these bags singularly. Teachers brings their lunches to school in these bags. Filing cabinets are stuffed with them for crafts, etc.

Look in one’s closets and you’ll see “single use” bags being used for all sorts of things.

I have received packages that have used plastic bags as the insulation.

For me, I made living decisions based on “single use” plastic bags. All m trashcans are bathroom size. I use these bags as the liner for the trashcans. This is primarily the one in the kitchen as the bathroom trashcan rarely has trash (save when Beetle visits).

Now with my supply of bags curtailed, I am on limited time before I have to purchase plastic bags for my trashcans in order to dispose of garbage. That seems nonsensical. It also seems counter to the purpose of this law. But I don’t have a problem with purchasing that which I use, so I will.

It’s not a winning argument, I understand. Me, just a consumer and taxpayer, has no power in this decision. I just am the one who has to live with the decision.

It already has had positive consequences for me. When I learned this ban also includes convenience stores, well, I guess that will keep me from visiting there. I am not going to bring in cloth bag to buy a hoagie and a soda. Same thing at the local deli. It’s all good as I should not frequent those places to begin with. The lack of a bag is enough of an inconvenience to help me remember I won’t shop in those places. Add to that Target and Walmart, and all of a sudden, not only will the bags be reduced, so will my consumption.

Dot . . . Dot . . . Dot . . .

Times change. Someone mentioned her crystals to me. I had a flashback to my college days when I thought crystals were so kewl that I gifted them to people. Yikes! . . . I contacted a company recently regarding the quality of linens I had purchased. The replaced a couple items free of charge. Yeah! Since then I have been inundated with promotional e-mails. Just received one titled: URGENT: Bath essentials are almost gone. Really? That’s urgent? I will no long receive e-mail from this company 😉 . . .This should be a time of excitement as baseball is in spring training. Once again greed as to how to split billions of dollars leaves the fans with nothing. MLB has lost my interest. Sure, I’ll watch a game here or there, but the league has finally broken my spirit . . . Irony: watching decluttering/minimalism videos and getting ads for buying crap at Hobby Lobby . . . Hey, as you pay your New Jersey income taxes, remember that you are paying for potholes that were filled during Gov. Corzine’s reign (2006-10) . . . Why I no longer have expectations. In September I was told there were Owens family photographs at the house that I left when I moved out. I said I would take them even though I am doubtful there is not anything I already scanned. Six months later nothing has ever been provided. If I had expected them, I would be frustrated . . . Turned on the air conditioner this afternoon. It is warm here . . .

I Voted

21-11-02 I Voted

New Jersey, along with Virginia, has the first test of a new president with its gubernatorial election the year following the presidential election. Here in Democrat country, Phil Murphy’s re-election is almost guaranteed.

I began my day by voting. We have a new process this year. This will need an overhaul.

There are two polling areas in the same place. It was unclear which one I was to go to. We figured it out and thus began the lengthy process. I was the only voter at the time. First I had to sign in. Gone are the books with a copy of my signature to sign next to. I signed on a tablet. That went okay save the guy working it didn’t know how to call me up.

Once signed, a credit card-type thing was registered with my credentials. I then had to sign the old style ballot paper.

I took the credit card to the booth. The booths are no longer enclosed. I sat down at a computer screen, inserted my card, and then voted. The screen is big and easy to sign what needs to be seen.

All the while a pollster walked behind me. He wasn’t peeking at my ballot (I don’t think). I think he was ensuring I had no issues. Even so, all my votes were on screen.

Eventually I was done. At that point the voter prints his ballot. It is a lengthy process to print. Out came a huge piece of paper. It seemed larger that a 17″ piece. The pollster took the ballot and placed inside a cardboard cover. At that point he could have seen my vote.

Then I had to walk my ballot that was inside the cardboard to a lady at another device that looked like a printer but was a scanner. She had great trouble feeding my ballot into this device. Two other people came over. Eventually, my ballot was removed from the cardboard to hand feed into the scanner. All my votes were clearly visible at that point.

Again, I don’t think anyone was trying to see my votes, but at several places the votes were visible.

This process seems exceedingly cumbersome. And an extreme waste of paper. And lengthy. I can’t imagine how backed up polling places will be when there is a crowd. This was close to a 10-minute process and I was the only one voting.

The machines were created by Dominon as their name is prominently displayed.

More work needs to be made to make this a better process. I never had a problem with the old system, but I suppose this will eventually be better. Maybe.

NJ Taxpayers to Bail Out Gambling

According to the Record, a bill is being introduced that would funnel $100,000,000 to the flailing horse racing industry in the Garden State. Jobs is the reason for the public support.

A bill authored by state Sens. Vin Gopal, D-Monmouth, and Paul Sarlo, D-Bergen, that would provide $20 million annually for purses over the next five years was approved unanimously by the Budget and Appropriations Committee on Monday.

A full Senate vote could happen on Dec. 17. The legislation also needs Assembly action and Gov. Phil Murphy’s signature.

“This will be a huge help for the horse racing industry that is an important part of New Jersey’s heritage and culture and a key source of jobs and economic activity,” Gopal said. “There are tens of thousands of jobs impacted directly or indirectly by the racing industry, including the long-term survival of Monmouth Racetrack.”

No one wants jobs to disappear, but the reality is if the business cannot make it without government support, then the industry should disappear. Oh sure, I could be persuaded, perhaps, to prop up an essential industry, but gambling isn’t it.

One hundred million dollars that will go to an entertainment industry! That is just incredible!

Fiocchi’s Still Looking After Himself

Sam Fiocchi is running for U.S. Assembly.

I’ve written about Fiocchi before.

Here’s the thing, Fiocchi ran for freeholder and won. He accomplished nothing as a freeholder. He ran for state assembly and won against a wounded Nelson Albano. Fiocchi accomplished nothing and was soundly defeated when he ran for re-election in 2015.

Since then, Fiocchi has done nothing. Not school board. Not dog catcher.

Three years later, Fiocchi thinks he’s qualified to represent us in the U.S. House of Representatives. Based on what? Fiocchi has done absolutely nothing for the citizens of southern New Jersey.

This once again about serving Fiocchi’s ego. Once again, I will not vote for him.