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Archive for November 26th, 2005

Pruning

I’ll be de-blog rolling Red State Law Blog. Looks like someone hacked the guy’s blogger account.

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This is related to the Roslyn, NY school board scandal where millions were allegedly stolen by the board members. Of course, school boards steal annually through outrageous taxation, but this was illegal stealing.
A gay man charged with helping his lover loot a wealthy school district has asked a judge to rule that state law protecting spouses from having to testify against each other also applies to same-sex partners.
Stephen Signorelli, fighting charges that he stole at least $219,000 from the Roslyn, N.Y., school district, is seeking to bar testimony by his longtime companion, Frank Tassone, the district’s former superintendent.

Auditors say that in all, $11.2 million was taken from the Long Island district. It is considered among the largest thefts from a U.S. school system.

Tassone pleaded guilty this year to stealing $1 million between 1996 and 2002. As part of his plea bargain, he agreed to testify against other defendants in the case, which meant he might have to take the stand in Signorelli’s trial.

In a motion filed before a judge in Nassau County, Signorelli sought to bar such an appearance, saying he and Tassone deserved the same protection as a heterosexual couple.

This is a catch-22, unless the NYC domestic partnership law has some real teeth in it. If the judge rules in their favor it will be branded an activist ruling. If not it strikes me as a double standard on a moral level. I’m no lawyer, but maybe the guy should testify and invoke the 5th amendment.

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With apologies to Mary and Sarah Chamberlain, the story of the parade balloon hitting the light pole and causing them injury has hit Abu Graib status.
The Times has published no fewer than 4 front web page reports, as well as two multi media features (a video and slide show) and God knows how many follow ups and op eds are forthcoming. To show that the insanity is not exclusive to the Times, the City will form a commission to investigate the accident.
When a paper that has decried the Bush tax cuts so vehemently can only publish one story like this in the same time frame as this balloon thing, I can rightly say that the agenda is getting a little too obvious. Those two girls from Albany are bigger news than this:
After four years of tight budgets and deepening debt, most states from California to Maine are experiencing a marked turnaround in their fiscal fortunes, with billions of dollars more in tax receipts than had been projected pouring into coffers around the country.

The windfall is a result of both a general upturn in the economy and conservative budgeting by state officials in recent years, and it is leading to the restoration of school funding, investments in long-neglected roads and bridges, debt reduction, and the return of money borrowed from cities and counties.

In Sacramento, officials are setting aside part of a multibillion-dollar revenue windfall to build up California’s depleted cash reserves. Delaware has appropriated money for a pilot program for full-day kindergarten, and Florida will spend nearly $400 million on a new universal preschool program for 4-year-olds. Some states, including New York, New Jersey, Hawaii and Oklahoma, are pouring significant new sums into public colleges and universities after several years of sharp cutbacks.

Both girls will be "just fine." One had six stitches. There will be no litigation. You can all exhale now.

Update: The Political Teen has some commentary on how NBC dropped the ball on covering the mishap when it was actually news.

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The Times reporting yesterday’s last week’s last month’s last year’s last decade’s news:

Perhaps no minor party has shaped modern-day politics in New York as profoundly as the state’s Conservative Party, sending a little-known candidate to the United States Senate in 1970 and helping orchestrate the defeat of a Democratic star, Gov. Mario M. Cuomo, a generation later.

But now, with the steady erosion of its base of power over the last decade, the party faces the grim prospect of going the way of the Brooklyn Dodgers, The New York Herald Tribune and the subway token.

That little known candidate, 3rd term Governor George Pataki, has all but completely abandoned his partnership with the party for political expediency in state that seems to grow more liberal by the hour. The Conservative Party has now been overtaken in membership by the Independence Party, whose only distinction appears to be that they aren’t Democrats or Republicans. Do they lean right? Well, they backed Ralph Nader for president in 2004. If that was to siphon off votes that would have otherwise gone for Kerry, maybe. But in a state where it wouldn’t have made a difference I have grave doubts.

Linked to Wizbang!

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