Thursday, May 31, 2007

Uninsured Seeking Care:A Number Between 3 And 15

The Salt Lake Tribune is reporting that Davis County has received one-half million dollars to open a Health Clinic in the County, whereas the Deseret News is saying that the grant was a puff of smoke.

Don't they know that smoking isn't allowed?

My wish would be that the County didn't get the money. Here is why. The county says that 10% of the population of the county is uninsured. That is about 27,500 by my figuring. The Midtown facility turns away 20 per day, of which we don't know how many are actually Davis County residents, but if they were all from Davis County (not likely) that would come to 7,300 seeking care at Midtown. Midtown actually cares for 1,000 from Davis County which is 3 percent of the total uninsured. You add that figure to those seeking care at Midtown that will now come to Davis County and you will have 30 percent of the total number seeking care at Davis County with only 15 percent of the total number getting care. What percentage of the 15 percent actually live in Davis County is anyone's guess? Somewhere between 3 and 15 percent is the right answer.

What are the odds that we will be treating one of the uninsured 27,500 Davis County residents out of the 4,300 annually when we have to pick a number between 3 and 15?

I want to see how many of those turned away at Midtown are from Davis County before I worry about the uninsured in Davis County.

This is all before asking the question, 'Why is 10 percent of Davis County uninsured'? And why am I paying for them?

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Voucher Peace Offerings And Infighting

Steve Urquhart has offered a peace offering in the whole voucher mess and suggested that we hold a special session to repeal both 148 and 174 and replace them with one voucher law that is subject to a vote of the people.

Reasonable right?

Not to everyone. Jeremy, a voucher opponent likes it, but the Davis Didjeridu is standing firm against it!

Nothing is simple in voucher-land.

Check the comments of Urquhart's post to see Jeremy's reply to the Didj.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

The Cost For Educating Non-English Speakers

A Review submitted to the Utah State Legislature shows that the cost for education non-English speaker in poverty is between $100-$500 more than native speakers.

Unfortunately, they were asked to specify what it costs to educate an undocumented immigrant. This audit raises more questions than it answers. The only criterion they have used to determine costs appears to be whether English is a second language, and the poverty level of the student. This doesn't answer costs of educating for me, because we should assume from this report that it costs the same to educate a documented immigrant child. That is, unless it can be proven that legal immigrants are less likely to live in poverty than illegal immigrants.

Is poverty the lot of all illegal immigrants? Certainly not always relative to their country of origin. Living here in the worst of circumstances is still remarkably better than third-world poverty. But, does living here as an illegal immigrant condemn one to live below our poverty line? Is a Social Security Number and a job, likely to move one above the poverty line? How many illegal immigrants with children are going to work here without a Social Security Number(belonging to whom?), really? Relative to one another, do illegal immigrants have a advantage over legal immigrants because of what it cost to come here legally?

The question that should be answered, but cannot with such a narrow study as this is 'what is the real cost of illegal immigration to the migrant child'?

Hat Tip: SL Tribune

Monday, May 21, 2007

State School Board: Above The Law?

Lately, I get indignant about very few things, but this weekend I saw something that was maddening.

First, some background. The State Board has refused to implement the voucher law until their twenty questions are answered by the Attorney General. Kim Burningham, the Chairman of the State School Board was on with Rod Decker saying how surprised he was that the School Board had not been sued to prevent them from implementing vouchers before the deadline. I could see that it would have been politically advantages for Burningham to have the board be the target of a lawsuit. Then it would be easy for him to say, 'we can't implement vouchers until the courts give us permission'. The fact is that nobody sued, and now Burningham is trying to justify not following the law.

Burningham appears to be getting away with it.

Mr. Burningham, oppose vouchers if you will. Speak publicly against them. Devote your political clout to their ultimate demise, but follow the law! Just follow the law!

Friday, May 18, 2007

That Villain In Your Head

I think its time that I make a declaration of loyalty to my conservative ideals. I think just because I don't match the villainous caricature of a conservative that people boo in their heads, that I will jump ship. (My little head-villain dances in little tap shoes and twirls his greasy mustache to piano music.)

Now, as one commenter insists, I may be a bigot. I may not speak ill of Democrats in general. I certainly don't speak ill of Republicans in that same sense, but I am not a liberal.

Just thought you ought to know.

(Resume evil villain dance)

Thursday, May 17, 2007


"I called you a bigot because it was rather obvious that you feel skaters are somehow inherently of less worth than others. You can go ahead an deny your feelings on this if you want to, but you are not fooling me, bigot."

Word Of The Day: Teacher

"Teacher: n. includes administrators, guidance counselors, psychologists and school social workers."
Who knew that Administrators are included in the term 'teacher'? Apparently, the Lege didn't know that the earmarked dollars intended for 'teachers' would go to so many others besides those who wear out their days in the classroom?

KSL:State is Short on Money for Teacher Raises, Bonuses

Hatch Skate Park Update

Last night, I had a conversation with a 15 year old skater that I know through the Boy Scouts of America. As it turns out he, and a bunch of his skater friends, attended Tuesday nights NSL City Council meeting in which the fate of the park was discussed. He tells me that the skate park will be moved to behind the tennis courts and fenced in. He seem pleased with the result but thought it might even be better if the city were to charge a yearly fee to those that use the skate park. That way, only those who are interested in skate boarding will go there, and that would hopefully cut back on the crime and drug dealing that, he says, goes on there. He's actually been afraid to go skate boarding there because of the gangs that will target skaters, and vice-versa.

Incidentally, I was called bigoted the other day because I said that Bountiful citizens were right to question the location of a skate park. As if location is unimportant as a consideration. If I'm a bigot because of my concerns that I'm happy that label.

Bigot? Is that all you've got?

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Still Missing Something

The Clipper today highlights how one-third of our tax hike is being spent. What is unsaid is what is most important.

Popularity And Polarity

WP simul-blogs at both Centerville Citizen is a Democrat and A View from the Stern. Sometimes his posts are identical, but these posts are only nearly identical. The titles are all that's different.

For my Republican friends too...

The Hospital for the Boston Celtics and me...

The post is a travel log about WP's recuperative visit to a Boston Area Spine Center. Why is this post meant for Republicans? It seems that WP has asked a lot of folks in Massachusetts what they think about their former Governor, Mitt Romney. It turns out that they didn't like him in, perhaps, the most liberal state.

Big deal. I think all that I have to do is to quote the snake, "You knew what I was when you picked me up."


You know, I read 'Centerville Citizen' because I like to know what is happening in Centerville, and I read 'A view from the stern' because I like WP. Sometimes those two worlds intersect ever so slightly and provide an interesting view of the author.

Bountiful Dump: Non-residents Keep-Out

I was over at my sister's this weekend lamenting the fact that non-Bountiful Residents cannot enter the Bountiful Dump. We had to call my brother to drive in a truckload. I did a little research into this apparent absurdity only to conclude that it is perfectly correct that I am required to show that I am a Bountiful Resident before dumping there.

If you're wondering, the dump is owned and operated by Bountiful, not the County. Residents of the County may dump their junk in Layton. Bountiful opted out of participation in the 'Service District' in 1984 and even participated in a legal battle concerning some fees imposed that went up to the Utah Supreme Court.

As an aside, there appears to be a vibrant bird watching community that hovers about the dump. I wonder if those Legacy highway detractors knew about that?

Voucher Impropriety

Randy Smith, of fame, has dirt on this whole voucher fiasco. He's been keeping his mouth shut about it, which makes me wonder what reason there is to wait?

C'mon Randy, let those allegations fly. It isn't libel when you're aiming at a public figure, and you're doing a public service by making this known.

Speak up before it's too late!

I'm calling you out.

That Sound You Hear Is Not A Death-Rattle

I've been absolutely dying to post something of use. In fact, for the last week I've been working on a post about religion and its appropriate expression in the political sphere, but I haven't had the heart to post it. I just might be too much for general consumption. Most people just won't get it. I can imagine the comments now.

"Tyler, I had no idea that you were an atheist. I mean, have you read the Bible?"

"Tyler, you religious nuts drive me crazy. It's all your fault that my property taxes are skyrocketing."

"Tyler, Do you agree with me or not that all the Book of Mormon prophets were liberal and would have voted for Kerry?"

"Tyler, Satan is laughing right now that you posted this, and he's going to cause illegal aliens to move into your home!"
Okay, so I'm nervous to say what I'm about to say, but it is pertinent. I attended an ad-hoc meeting of conservative minds, and I was repulsed by what I heard. I had a crying baby in my arms or I would have spoken up but here is the gist of what I heard.

Somebody went on about what I call the "North American Union". They called it something else--I don't recall--an acronym. My response, show me one administration official that is talking like this and I'll listen to what you have to say. Give me a quote, source it!

Next we had a foray into internet pornography. A comment was made that in California, over 200 anti-pornography bills were put forward and none of them passed. Then they began to mull over how 'Satan wanted these bills to fail'. My question is, what did these bills contain? Give me a run-down of the bills? If they were anything like the anti-pornography laws that we've passed in this state-those that punish ISP's, then I would oppose those too.

Then we talked about the return of the ERA. We were told that the liberals had secretly introduced this legislation that would amend the constitution 'under the radar'. 'Very few people know that this legislation has been introduced'. What do I think? Ted Kennedy has introduced this legislation every year since it was first killed. Those who are watching aren't surprised. Should we worry about it? Probably, but it was hardly a stealth operation.

My overall point is that almost nothing can be accomplished in this country unless it is talked about, on a large scale, by a lot of people. People who can impact change.

Big conspiracies--most of them--don't exist because they require large numbers of people to carry them out.

Conspiracies take time.

And you're asking yourself why is someone who is insanely focused on local issues, talking about all these national figures and events?

It's simple. I'm urging all who read this to take a step back from the brink. Think more locally yourself.

It might just save your sanity.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Mormon And Democrat?

I haven't posted in a while but I've been watching, and one thing this week stands out above the rest.

Centerville Citizen is a Democrat.

No, really. When Centerville Citizen blog began a couple of years ago the posts were much different. Of course, it was run by another guy, formerly known as Centerville Citizen. Just so we're clear, the new Centerville Citizen is a Democrat, and he's changed the title of his blog to reflect this fact.

Some other things we may not have known, that Centerville has revealed.

  • Several former, and current, high ranking "Mormons" are, and were, Democrats.
  • One was also Canadian. (Please don't hold this against Elder Brown).
  • It's perfectly alright to be a Democrat and a member of the LDS faith. (And if one more person asks me how this is possible I'm going to scream because I am not a Democrat and don't make a good spokesman for the other party)
Now, we hear this line of reasoning an awful lot from Democrats in Utah because Republicans do have the seat at the head of the table. Let us remember, though, that Democrats do have a seat at the table which has been a position that makes our Constitutionally based government great!

The minority party does not get 'offed' by the majority, and this system works pretty well for all of us.

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Voucher Heat Too Great

I'm being intentionally vague here, but my wife, who has no dog in this fight, has been pulled into the voucher dispute. She isn't a political nut, as I might be, and really is just trying to get along. My feeling is that this voucher dispute has become far to much of a civil war, pitting brother against sister, and that we ought to take a step back and ask ourselves what we are really doing to each other.

Dirty tactics have been used on both sides.

At its core, the voucher law lacks the insidiousness for which it has been charged. A public vote on voucher will also mean less than the rhetoric from both sides suggest.

Please put away your weapons. There is no need for alarm.

Media Should "Go Intensely Local"

I just heard James Lileks, writer and newspaperman, tell Hugh Hewitt what I've been pushing since I started this blog. I've always focused intensely on local issues, because I don't think it's being done by the local media. I have my own reasons for doing this; to effectively fill a niche you must stay within the niche, and I can't claim any real expertise in any area not in my backyard. James went on with some other helpful advice, but the part pertinent to my point is here.

"HH: All right, James, number one, I want to hear your three big fixes for newspapers which are bleeding out.

JL: Number one is to go intensely local, and I’ve said this before and before again. When I want to know what’s going on in the world, for example, in the Middle East, I’m going to go read the Michaels…I’m going to read Michael Yon, I’m going to read Michael Ledeen, I’m going to read Michael Totten. And if you go to our editorial page in our paper, you know, we’ve got Garrison Keillor talking about how much he hates the current occupant. A little more heat than light, exactly.

HH: Yup.

JL: So I would just stop trying to be a lesser edited down version of the New York Times, and assume that canny news consumers know where to get it. And frankly, if you’re going to lose a certain portion of the demographic that does know how to get news on the web, you’re just going to have to cut them loose. And you’re going to get far more people to stick with the paper if you go intensely local. In the old days, and I hate to hold up the 30’s as a model for anything, but in the 1930’s, the Minneapolis Star was a tabloid, and it was hard hitting, and it had big, huge, screaming headlines, and it was a joy to read. What they did was they just simply blanketed the city. They sent a lot of people out, and guys came back with a couple of stories every day, and banged them out. They weren’t worried about journalism as art. They weren’t worried about the first draft of history. They were worried about telling the story of the town, of the people who lived there. And there’s no real other media organization that has that ability. A television can’t do it. Television is sensational, and they don’t have the time. Bloggers can do it, but they have too diffuse an audience. We’ve got newspapers, people who can write, people who know how to put stories together, and photographers and vehicles, and all the infrastructure to disseminate this story of the city. So why try to be the New York Times and tell us exactly what’s going on elsewhere? Put a little page of national and world briefs if you like, but flip the A and the B section, and make the front part of the paper the front part of the town. That’s the first thing."