Sat
Apr 14 2007
03:52 pm

The male goldfinches have really "yellowed up" in the last few days at this location. The brown leaves were new Spring growth killed by the recent freezes.

Continued...

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Sat
Apr 14 2007
08:56 am

Unfortunately, the surge is only making a dent. You'd think it would be more successful seeing all the bad guys have fled the city or been told to lie low for awhile. There have been more attacks outside Baghdad, some in towns once considered models of reconstruction. I wonder if the Baghdad surge will cause more problems for people living outside that city?

It's so obvious we can't control the on-going slaughter of civilian Iraqis, even though that's our responsibilty as an occupier. Everyone keeps saying our soldiers are dying in order to help the Iraqi people, but most Iraqis would rather take their chances with their own enemies or factions than with this on-going mess. The kindest thing in the long run for the Iraqi people would be for us to leave. They might end up oppressed again, but hey, so many say they were better off under the evil dictator than they are today. Funny thing is they are probably right.

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104
like
Sat
Apr 14 2007
07:36 am

WEATHER UPDATE: The approaching storms are breaking up a little and there are some patches of sky showing. Looks like there's a chance the rain will hold off long enough for the parade.

The weather forecast is not encouraging, but here are some Dogwood Arts Festival events lined up for Downtown Knoxville today:

Parade:

11 AM: Dogwood Arts Festival Parade and Band Competition, Gay Street, Downtown Knoxville. Floats, Helium Balloons, Bands, Equestrian and Llama units along with specialty entries.

Market Square:

11 AM - 10 PM: Arts and craft show, 60 artisans displaying painting, pottery, glass, jewelry,woodwork, metal, and various hand-made goods.

11 AM - 10 PM: Art in the Park with the Oak Ridge Art Center demonstrating pottery fired in the Raku method; and lost-cast jewelry using Salt, and other projects.

11:30 AM -7:30 PM: Kids Art Activities with the KMA, Knox County Library & ORNL FCU

Entertainment on Market Square:

Saturday, Main Stage
• 1-1:50 Danny Gammon and Toolebender – Old Time
• 2-2:50 Naughty Knots – Old Time
• 3-3:50 Jolt Wagon – Alt-country
• 4-4:50 Kyle Campbell and Jen Duke – Singer Songwriters
• 5-5:50 Maid Rite String Band – Old Time
• 6:10–7 Lonesome Coyotes – Western Swing
• 7:15-7:45 Gypsy Hands – Belly Dancing
• 8-10 VOCO – World Music

Saturday, Family Stage
• 12:30 Puppet Show
• 1:00 Suzuki Violins
• 1:30 Faye Wooten, storytelling
• 2:00 Puppet Show
• 2:30 Faye Wooten, storytelling
• 3-3:50 Sean McCullough and Phil Pollard – kids music
• 4-5:30 Poetry with local poets

SUNDAY on Market Square:

Noon to 5 PM: Dogwood Arts Festival Bluegrass Blowout. Alex Leach & Friends, Cumberland Gap Connection, Wade Hill & the Hillians, Jack Hatfield and more, sponsored by East Tennessee's Own WDVX. Plus arts and crafts show, kids activities, and more.

Ongoing:

Krutch Park: Art in Public Places: Big Art-Big Impact. Installation of 12 large-scale sculptures by artists Wayne Trapp, Richard Hallier, Mike Roig, Moema Furtado and Taylor Wallace.

58
like
Sat
Apr 14 2007
07:21 am

Not that it has ever mattered much to us, we usually file a few days early, Income Taxes are due April 17th this year. Normally, income taxes would be due on April 16th, the 15th is on a Sunday. This year taxes are due one day later because there is a holiday in Washington, D.D., Emancipation Day.

According to my accountant, the Emancipation Day holiday in DC is when Lincoln declared slaves free in DC as a predecessor to freeing all slaves in the United States. Since this is a holiday in DC and the IRS offices are located in DC, IRS employees honor this holiday. Thus, you have one more day to file this year before deciding on an extension.

Also, according to the AP article, "Some 54 percent of tax filers say their returns are sent electronically, and that number is rapidly growing." We don't file electronically. Don't want to. Don't know if we could even if we wanted to. Who here files their Income Taxes electronically? Use the poll to register your response.

64
like
Sat
Apr 14 2007
07:17 am
Fri
Apr 13 2007
01:57 pm

I think the only people so-called liberals feel should have un-censored 100%free speech are those who say way out wacky stuff about the president and Jesus. The mass hysteria about the Dixie Chicks and last year the Book of Daniel show was the same as what is going on with Imus. It got many stations to ban the Chicks and got Daniel-which said wacky stuff about Jesus canceled. College athletes and fans do need a thick skin, hang out at UT during a Fla. game and see what I mean. I've heard way, way dirtier comedians than Imus, Sarah Silverman is the latest, she trashes blacks, Asians and Jesus and most everything else. But no, she doesn't have a radio show. I grew up on Archie Bunker, who could not survive in today's sanitized world.

66
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Fri
Apr 13 2007
01:28 pm

I have also created an alternate proposal for rezoning.

Would you like to know how your new school performs compared to others? Visit SchoolMatters and follow the steps outlined after the jump.

You should end up with these results but if you click on the school names and others areas of the table (not mine..your results found at SchoolMatters) you will receive a wealth of information and charts.

School Reading Math ACT Average
Austin East 73.9 61.7 17.4
Bearden 97.8 94.1 23.3
Farragut 97.9 93.5 23.7
Powell 90.6 89.4 21.1
West 87.5 82.6 22.1
Fulton 83.9 77.6 18.3
Gibbs 87.0 80.6 20.3
Halls 90.4 89.2 22.0
Karns 92.7 95.2 21.4
South Doyle 85.1 79.6 20.7
Carter 90.3 87.0 20.0
Central 88.6 86.5 21.6
Data provided by SchoolMatters, a service of Standard and Poor's.


Click read more for instructons on generating your own comparison...

Continued...

138
like
Fri
Apr 13 2007
01:19 pm

Ethics coming to Sevier County soon. An ethics policy is required to be in place by June 30. The requirement for counties to adopt an ethics policy is part of the Ethics Reform Act of 2006, which came about after the Tennessee Waltz scandal involving the arrest of some state lawmakers.

I, for one, welcome ethics to Sevier County. I hope that the Ethics Committee in Sevier County is successful. They have a tremendous amount of work to do.

I am excited that our elected officials stand on the precipice eager to leap into the realm of ethical behavior! I sincerely hope they succeed!

Let's all wish them luck!

62
like
Fri
Apr 13 2007
12:01 pm

Turns out that

Wolfie is a s**thead

, opportunist, and somewhat less than completely moral. Who could have predicted that? /sarcasm

CAFKIA

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58
like
Fri
Apr 13 2007
11:36 am

Air Fest Postponed

Due to the gloomy weather forecast, the Air Fest event at Maryville College has been postponed from Saturday, April 14, to Saturday, April 28, from 5 pm-8 pm.

So see ya on the 28th ( not tomorrow!) at the Blount County AirFest.

Come on out. Ask EHAT- Blount County Environmental Health Action Team about the work it has done in the past. They have done studies on what we as Blount County residents want for our county. Ask them about those concerns because there has been very little coverage on this.

You might even want to read about it before you go.

The Harvey Broome Group Sierra Club will be there. Ask them about mountain top developments and these new fangled onsite wastewater systems that are changing the face of our mountains and wetlands.

Come on out, ask questions and question all the answers.

59
like
Fri
Apr 13 2007
10:35 am

That was one of the many lessons of Watergate. Now, as I'm sure you've heard, there is yet another revelation regarding the U.S. Attorney firings investigation reminiscent of the "18 minute gap":

The investigation has revealed that White House e-mails about official business — on electronic accounts intended for political matters — may be gone, in violation of a law that requires their preservation. Twenty-two White House officials, including political adviser Karl Rove, have the accounts sponsored by the Republican National Committee, administration officials say.

White House spokesman Scott Stanzel on Thursday could not rule out that some of the missing e-mails involved the attorney firings.

John Conyers, Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, has requested all of the RNC e-mails pertaining to the U.S. Attorney firings, but they have yet to comply. Conyers says "The White House position seems to be that executive privilege not only applies in the Oval Office, but to the RNC as well."

The RNC claims that prior to 2004 they had a policy to automatically purge e-mail archives on a regular basis. Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy is skeptical: "They say they have not been preserved. I don't believe that!"

Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington says there are more than five million missing e-mails, a violation of federal law.

It does seem odd that there are no backups. Republicans are supposed to be well-versed in Business 101 matters such as records retention and IT business continuity best practices and compliance audits and all that stuff. And weren't the personnel actions in question more recent than 2004?

But what's really puzzling about all this is that there's no real evidence that anyone has done anything illegal with regard to the U.S. Attorney firings. It's pretty well established that Bush is politicizing the Justice Department, but that's not necessarily a crime, is it?

So why the cover-up?

56
like
Fri
Apr 13 2007
10:22 am
By: rocketsquirrel  shortURL

Back, by semi-popular request...

drum roll...for you, Socialist with a Gold Card!

School daze

55
like
Fri
Apr 13 2007
09:16 am
By: cameronjbrooks  shortURL

Hello- my name is Cameron Brooks and I am an organizer with the Communications Workers of America.

I work for a union here in Knoxville called United Campus Workers. We are an organization of UT Faculty and Staff working to improve conditions for employees at the university. We are in the midst of pushing for a decent pay raise this year and have an email action alert campaign that we wanted to share with Knoxviews- here is a link to the action alert:

(link...)

UT employees have languished under less than decent pay raises over the past decade. Additionally, there is a huge problem with UT paying poverty wages. Please join with us in addressing this issue.

In Solidarity,

Cameron Brooks

57
like
Fri
Apr 13 2007
09:16 am
By: R. Neal  shortURL

State Sen. Tommy Kilby (D-Oakdale) reminds us of an upcoming sales tax holiday, Friday April 27th through Sunday April 29th. This is a special one-time exemption for 2007 in addition to the usual August sales tax holiday. More details at www.tntaxholiday.com.

121
like
Fri
Apr 13 2007
09:10 am
By: R. Neal  shortURL

WBIR has an interactive map showing the current and proposed school zones. You can enter your address and see how you will be affected. Click on the little round symbols to see the name of the school zone. The right column has settings for current and proposed zones.

141
like
Thu
Apr 12 2007
10:26 pm
By: rocketsquirrel  shortURL

Big Trouble: Solving Education Problems Means Rethinking Super-Size Schools and Districts. Focus on Utah. link.

does this sound familiar?

Abstract: Big school districts promised to hold down costs by centralizing functions under one roof and delivering a greater selection of academic offerings and activities, thus improving education. But they have not delivered. Up to a certain size, consolidation can save costs, but above that size, districts experience "diseconomies of scale," including misallocation of funds toward bureaucracy rather than instruction. On average, large districts' standardized test scores fall in the lower end of their expected ranges, while smaller districts' scores fall in the upper end of their ranges. Large schools are concentrated in large districts, and big schools experience the same problems as big districts. Parents are not happy with big districts--their complaints over test scores, curriculum, taxes, or anything else always come back to the issue of control. In a big district, the bureaucracy makes the important decisions, and parents feel alienated. Some districts have tried to create sub-schools that share a common school building or to create sub-districts or local councils, but they fail to address the issue of control. If administrators don't deal with the problem, frustrated citizens will take their complaints to the state, which will attempt to force quality. Limiting the size of districts and schools and creating smaller districts will improve academics and efficiency and encourage public participation by bringing issues back to the local level. This will spur innovation, flexibility, and commitment by parents and teachers.

130
like
Thu
Apr 12 2007
09:17 pm

This afternoon at work, a co-worker came up and said, "I'd like to introduce you to someone who's going to be doing some work for us." It was Rocketsquirrel. She said to Rocketsquirrel, pointing to me, "He also posts at KnoxViews."

Rocketsquirrel: "Oh, cool! ... Uh ... wait ... you aren't #9, are you?"

Me: "God, no."

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49
like
Thu
Apr 12 2007
06:44 pm

via WBIR

I'm very surprised that more attention hasn't been given to a possible failure of the Wolf Creek Dam. This could be catastrophic on a NO Katrina scale. Check out Davidson County. I hope any of you guys living in the inundation zones have flood insurance and a "get the hell out of Dodge" plan. According to the US Army Corps of Engineers the estimated damage in case of a failure is over $3 billion in damages...not to mention the possible loss of lives.

Link to view all maps here

133
like
Thu
Apr 12 2007
05:16 pm

CBS to permanently cease broadcast of Imus in the Morning, effective immediately.

55
like

The Tennessee Alliance for Progress is having it's fourth annual conference this weekend:

The Compass IV Conference will be held April 13-14, 2007 at the Cohn Adult Learning Center in West Nashville. This two-day gathering of progressives from around the state will feature networking, workshops, skill trainings, films, live music, the TAP Long Haul Awards and Silent Auction plus other events. This is THE statewide progressive gathering of the year in Tennessee. You don't want to miss it!

David Sirota, author of Hostile Takeover, and Paul Waldman, author of Being Right is Not Enough, will be keynote speakers.

We wanted to go this year, but real life and work related program activities intervened. If you're in the area, or up for a short drive to Nashville, it would be well worth your while to attend. Follow the links above for program and registration info.

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51
like

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