Thursday, January 11, 2007


Delaware Representative John Atkins, the legislator stopped for drunken driving in Ocean City, in October, has reportedly asked the state ethics board to determine if he violated house ethical standards when he flashed his legislative ID to the cops who stopped him. It's a step in the right direction toward resolving the controversies attending the stop. ... Now, let's see how the bosses in Ocean City handle their end of the stick.
Of course, we'd like to say we have confidence the city will also refer the matter to their ethics commission, but two things prevent that. First, they haven't done so, and secondly I can't recall a time when the commission has ever found a violation. But that could be because the members are all friends of the mayor and/or city councilmen, collectively or individually. That's not to suggest that the commission members are crooked, only that their thinking could be colored by their friendships.
In the end, however, it may not matter because the city seems committed to ride out the controversy instead speaking to the elephant in the room.
As I write this, the Daily Crime is moving a story saying the city has the full support of MADD, that they are convinced the officers acted appropriately... So I guess the officers' promise they would not arrest Atkins, even before any field sobriety tests were administered, is appropriate enough for those who pretend to want drunken driving dealt with harshly. But I doubt it is for anyone who has been victimized by a drunk driver, or who could be a victim of a drunken driver. ... I mean, if Atkins was not given special consideration, then that means Ocean City police regularly let drivers go free who demonstrate they have consumed nearly twice the amount of alcohol allowed by law. And that, in turn, means they're not enforcing the law equally and fairly ... doesn't it?


So Cal was inducted into the Hall of Fame and Barry Bonds wasn't because of questions about steroid use. But I just don't understand the prohibition on steroids... somebobody give me a clue. Yeah, I've heard the horror stories about steroids, and I have no reason to doubt them. But let's frame this question in its true light: Professional sports are not a game. Any "game" that pays individual players upwards of $10 million per year is not about funsies, it's about business and really big money. And while we hear a lot of talk condemning performance-enhancing drugs by the media and the MLB, I haven't heard team owners making similar statements.... Maybe that's because they are the ones whose fortunes rise or fall in relation to their teams' performance.
Listen, steroid use can shorten a user's life. It's been said they can produce cancers and cardiac issues, and professional atheletes know those risks. If they then choose to use them, it logically means they are adults and had excercized due dilligence and assumed the risks.
But what about giving them an "unfair" physical advantge over those players who don't use performance enhancing drugs? Well, the same question can be posed about weight-training, diet, physical fitness and even genetics. After all, a basketball player who's 6'10" has an advantage over one who is 5'8".

Tuesday, January 09, 2007


Yesssssss... Ocean City police chief Bernadette DiPino brought out the dogs and ponies today to provide an in-depth explanation of why it was perfectly fine for two of her line officers to give a "get out of jail free" pass to a Delaware state delegate back in October. This despite blowing a .14 BAC in a preliminary breath test.
According to a story published in today's online edition of the Daily Crime, DiPino reportedly supports the offiers' decision not to arrest Rep. John C. Atkins, R-Millsboro on the night of Oct. 29. DiPino says officers have wide lattitude in making a decision to arrest drunken drivers. ... Is that so?... Well by that logic, someone could call in a bogus bomb threat and the investigating officers could let the perpetrator go because, while they did technically break the law, no one was actually hurt. ... Oooo this is the new police logic in law enforcement... Yeah, I can see all kinds of applications for this thinking... terroristic threats; no arrest, no jail... it's a matter of officer discretion. .... Brandishing a firearm- don't worry, it's officer discretion.... yeah, this is a good thing DiPino did... Thing is, what if the average Joe doesn't have the juice it takes to avoid a night in the slammer over such 'minor' misdeeds, where no one get hurt?... No problem. WIth an open door policy like this, it's only a matter of a short time before it's okay to get help from everybody's good friend, Ben Franklin. Never go anywhere without him, right Chief?


Well known farmer and Democratic Party contributer Roger Richardson is on the short list to become the state's secretary of agriculture, and that's a good thing. It's a good thing because Richardson is a life-long farmer and his understanding and success in the profession is easily measured by the reported 3,500 acres he has under till. But make no mistake, his expertise is not soley what put him to the short list. .... Neither is it just his considerable contributions to the Democratic Party over the years. And it's probably not just a combination of these two factors. More than likely, it is the fact that his daughter, Donna West, was Jim Mathias' campaign manager workerd her fingers to the bone to get him elected. And now that the deal is done, the bills are due.
This is the way politics work, and it's not necessarily a bad thing. It's only mentioned here as an object lesson for those seeking to move up in the political food chain. It's not just brains and ability, or even brains, ability and money. It is all those things and creating a sense of debt owed and due from politicians.