Category Archives: Insanity

California department confronts $86 million IT bill for ‘nothing’

 

drain

Sacrament Bee: Another California state government technology project is in trouble, and this one needs $17.5 million right away or the state could be on the hook for five times that much and have nothing to show for it.

Lawmakers said this week that they want to hold hearings about the future of the BreEZe project over the next few months before they’ll authorize the money. On Friday the Department of Consumer Affairs, which is implementing the system, said the delay would trigger contractual obligations to vendor Accenture PLC totaling up to $86 million.

Those costs, in turn, could raise fees collected by Consumer Affairs, department spokesman Russ Hiemerich said. “We are still evaluating the potential ramifications,” he said.

Consumer Affairs runs 40 state entities – boards, bureaus and commissions – that do everything from licensing doctors to regulating guide-dog schools. The department annually processes about 350,000 first-time license applications and 1.2 million renewals.

Ten entities launched BreEZe in 2013 to replace their decades-old paper-based systems with a unifying online program that would streamline work and make applications and renewals more convenient for licensees.

It hasn’t worked out that way, however. A state audit this month found that the new system is less efficient, poorly planned and difficult to implement. The department has spent more than $37 million on BreEZe so far. In 2009, the department figured the whole project would cost $28 million.

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Sen. Loni Hancock, D-Berkeley, mentioned BreEZe on Friday when she announced a bill that would require state departments to ask outside contract bidders whether they worked on other state projects that busted their budgets. Accenture is a case in point: The New York-based firm installed a glitch-prone computer system for CalPERS that cost double its original $279 million budget and launched two years late.

Consumer Affairs wants to part ways with Accenture at the end of the year and worked out a $17.5 million agreement to pay the company through December. Then the department would take the audit’s advice and reassess the project.

But when the Brown administration asked lawmakers to appropriate the money, Senate Budget Committee Chairman Mark Leno, D-San Francisco, tapped the brakes. The department, he wrote in a letter to Finance Director Michael Cohen, “has failed to provide adequate information necessary to inform the Legislature’s review and decision-making.” Several committees have hearing dates scheduled over the next few months that will provide “an opportunity to inform the decision-making process,” Leno said.

The delay, however, would invalidate Consumer Affairs’ agreement to cut ties to Accenture this year and allow the firm to bill roughly $2 million per month for 43 months, even if it no longer works on BreEZe.

“That in turn means the boards and bureaus may have to pay up to $86 million while getting nothing in return,” ”

Standard Operating Procedure for government agencies.

DCG

Public university omits race from crime alerts to protect minority students’ feelings

stupidity

Campus Reform: The University of Minnesota has discontinued using race in campus crime alerts sent to the Twin Cities community.

In an email sent to faculty, staff, and students at the U of M, President Eric W. Kaler and Vice President Pamela Wheelock said they had been made aware of the “negative impact of using race as part of the suspect descriptions” and will cease to use racial descriptions in alerts that are “too general.”

“We have heard from many in our community that the use of race in suspect descriptions in our Crime Alerts may unintentionally reinforce racist stereotypes of Black men, and other people of color, as criminals and threats,’ Kaler said in the email obtained by Campus Reform. “That in turn can create an oppressive climate for some members of our community, a climate of suspicion and hostility.”

According to the email, Kaler and Wheelock have been discussing the removal of racial descriptions from the crime alerts for more than a year—since Dec., 2013.

“As a student here, I feel that any details that can be shared with me about the suspect are important to know for my safety,” Matthew Ricker, a freshman at U of M told Campus Reform. “If the university is withholding information that can help me identify a threat to my safety, I cannot support their actions.”

In her statement, Wheelock said that while crime alerts are supposed to help people be safe, they can also impact people’s feeling of safety.

“For some, knowing they have all the information available about a crime, including the complete suspect description, makes them feel better informed and increases how safe they feel,” Wheelock said. “But others—particularly Black men—have shared that suspect descriptions negatively impact their sense of safety. They express concern that Crime Alerts that include race reinforce stereotypes of Black men as threats and create a hostile campus climate.

According to the email, racial descriptions will be included in the crime alerts only when the university thinks there is “sufficient detail that would help identify a specific individual or group.”

The email also claimed that U of M’s campus has become safer in the past 18 months as the number of robberies has decreased, and U of M faculty, staff, and students are “more aware” of campus safety measures.

pc police

DCG

Homeland Security chief says we should “give voice to the plight of Muslims” as Obama administration opens immigration floodgates to Muslims

heads in sand

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is a cabinet-level department of the federal government which is charged with the primary responsibilities of protecting the United States and its territories from and responding to terrorist attacks, man-made accidents, and natural disasters.

Like his boss, King Merde in the White House, DHS Secretary Jeh Johnson also adamantly refuses to call the Islamic State “Islamic” or a “state.”

Even a Democratic member of Congress, Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-Hawaii), openly disagrees with the Obama administration’s ostrich-like denial. Beginning at the 2:54 mark in the video below, Gabbard says:

“Unless you accurately identify who your enemy is, then you can’t come up with an offensive strategy, a winning strategy, to defeat that enemy.”

Worse than his denial, at the recent 3-day White House summit on violent extremism that began with an opening prayer by an imam, Sheikh Sa’ad Musse Roble of the Minneapolis’ World Peace [sic] Organization, Johnson actually said (00:10 mark in the CSPAN video that you can view here):

We in the administration, in government, should give voice to the plight of Muslims living in this country and the discrimination that they face.

How come Obama isn’t giving voice to the plight of “right-wing” Americans, especially sovereign citizens, but instead identifies those Americans as “extremist terrorists”? (See “Obama downplays blood-thirsty ISIS but targets right-wing Americans as extremist terrorists“)

Meanwhile, the Obama administration is opening the floodgates to foreign Muslims.

Paul Sperry reports for Investor’s Business Daily, Feb. 19, 2015, that between 2010 and 2013, the Obama administration imported almost 300,000 new immigrants from Muslim nations — more (legal) immigrants than the U.S. let in from Central America and Mexico combined over that period.

Many of the recent Muslim immigrants are from terrorist hot spots like Iraq, where the Islamic State operates. From 2010-2013, Obama ushered in 41,094 Iraqi nationals from there.

Now the State Department says it will quadruple the number of refugees brought here from Syria, where ISIS is headquartered. The U.S. will admit as many as 2,000 Syrian nationals by the end of fiscal year 2015, up from 525 since fiscal 2011.

This is a sea change in immigration flows, and it threatens national security. But the threat Muslim immigrants pose to homeland security was not addressed during the White House summit on terrorism. Instead, VPOS Joe Biden assured Muslim groups gathered during one session of the summit that the “wave” of Muslim immigration is “not going to stop.”

H/t Clash Daily

~Éowyn

King County Metro hiring a bathroom break coordinator

 

say what

MyNorthwest.com: King County Metro Transit has announced it’s hiring a “comfort station coordinator,” after it was learned that drivers were wetting themselves on the job.

KIRO Radio’s Dori Monson wonders just why this position is needed. “If the drivers know the route, you’d think they would be able to figure out where they can go,” Monson said.

The job will pay up to $97,000. The coordinator will help make accommodations for drivers and let them know where they can relieve themselves while on the clock.

Monson extended an invitation to Metro spokesman Jeff Switzer to come on the show to explain. Switzer responded:

“Thanks for the invitation, [King County Metro Transit General Manager Kevin Desmond] spoke with Dori in November on this topic and we always appreciate discussing transit issues. Dori has made it clear he has no sympathy regarding bathroom access, suggesting [bus drivers] be fired if they have a bathroom related incident, we’ll decline the invitation to speak on air.”

Monson does not deny that he made such a suggestion. “Yes, I recall this very clearly,” Monson said. “I do believe it’s accurate that I said if drivers sit in their own filth, exposing other passengers to the stench of their urine-soaked seats, that yeah, maybe that person shouldn’t be a driver for Metro Transit,” he continued.

Monson did more than stand by his statement.  “I’m doubling down on it,” he announced.

Monson said taxpayers should not be spending nearly $100,000 a year so Metro has a bathroom “czar.” Drivers should be able to figure it out themselves. “But of course, maybe that’s just me,” he said.

Here’s the job:

Salary: $80,641.60 – $97,468.80 Annually
Job Type: Career Service, Full Time, 40 hrs/week

Summary: The Comfort Station Coordinator is the point person for all aspects of King County Metro’s Comfort Station (Operator Restrooms) Program. This position will handle many tasks independently, performing both routine and complex tasks. Routine work is performed with minimal direction and guidance, while more complex tasks and projects will be performed under the supervision of the Superintendent of Service Quality. The Comfort Station Coordinator will be responsible for managing program budgets, communications, responses, action plans, and coordination with stakeholders.

Experience, Qualifications, Knowledge, Skills:

  • Three years of experience with project or program management including coordination of multi-faceted and multi-disciplinary project teams.

DCG

 

Big government: Kids who want to shovel snow need to get a permit – or watch out!

Schnepf (l) and Moilinari (r)/NY Times Photo

Schnepf (l) and Moilinari (r)/NY Times Photo

NY Times: One evening last month, the night before a blizzard that threatened the Northeast with a lot of bluster, two young men in central New Jersey decided to take action. Armed with about 100 fliers, Matt Molinari and Eric Schnepf, both 18 and seniors at Bridgewater-Raritan High School, went door to door in Bridgewater and then headed to Bound Brook, a neighboring town of about 10,000, to offer snow-shoveling services for a reasonable price the following day.

The ensuing combination of neighborhood vigilance, community policing, social media, local and national news coverage, libertarian ideology and the New Jersey Legislature swirled into an unexpected narrative about small-town living, or media fishbowls, or perhaps snowstorms.

After handing out about 40 fliers with their names and cellphone numbers, around 5:45 p.m. on Jan. 27, the two teenagers were stopped by police officers responding to a call that some suspicious characters were traipsing through yards, going door to door. Mr. Molinari and Mr. Schnepf met the description and were told that soliciting without a permit was “technically illegal” according to a town ordinance, Mr. Molinari said. They were also violating the town’s travel ban, which had gone into effect at 5 p.m. The teenagers were not charged, or given a written citation.

“We weren’t trying to break the law, and we only knew about the state travel ban at 11 p.m.,” Mr. Molinari said.

Solicitation permits in the town can cost up to $200, and are valid for a year. Nonprofit groups are exempt from the fee but still have to apply for a permit before going door to door. The ordinance does not apply to political campaigns, volunteer firefighters or real estate and insurance salesmen who have state licenses.

The officers told the snow shovelers to go home because the roads were not safe and said the teenagers could come back the next day if their services had been requested. The snowfall did not live up to its billing, and so they got only two requests for shoveling, and made about $50 each.

Mike Bal, a town resident whose home the boys visited, saw the police stop the shovelers. After hearing the boys’ account of the police encounter, he took to the “Bound Brook NJ Events” Facebook page, a town-affiliated forum, to express his outrage.

“Are you kidding me? Our generation does nothing but complain about his generation being lazy and not working for their money,” Mr. Bal wrote on the page. “Here’s a couple kids who take the time to print up flyers, walk door to door in the snow and then shovel snow for some spending money. And someone calls the cops and they’re told to stop?”

Josh Schroeder, who runs the Facebook page, posted the boys’ flier, because he “wanted to help them make money.” Both posts “went viral,” he said.

News media vans descended on the town; Glenn Beck talked about it, calling the situation a confrontation between young American entrepreneurship and the limits of an overly bureaucratic government.

Since the two shovelers had put their cellphone numbers on the flier, which had been published in USA Today along with an article (the flier has since been removed), Mr. Molinari and Mr. Schnepf kept their phones off for a while, they said, because they were getting hundreds of texts and calls from people who wanted to express their support or hire them for snow removal.

“It was meant to be a good deed,” Mr. Schroeder said of posting the flier on Facebook.

He said other news media outlets had skewed the story: “They twisted this into an antipolice thing,” he said. “It wasn’t the police’s fault — they were just doing their job.”

Michael Jannone, chief of the Bound Brook Police Department, said the verbal attacks on his department from outraged people across the country had been “vicious.” “We’ve been called everything from fascists to Nazis to Gestapo,” Chief Jannone said. “Our officers were never going to give them a ticket for that,” he added. “I can’t even count the number of times I’ve paid $5 for a cup of lemonade from a lemonade stand — I didn’t tell those kids to get a permit either.”

Chief Jannone said the danger from the storm was real: About three minutes after the officers had left the shovelers, their patrol car slid in the snow into a telephone pole, causing $11,000 worth of damage.

He also worried about the situation’s effect on community policing: “There are already disheartening relations between communities and police around the country, and then you have something like this. It doesn’t help.”

State Assemblyman Michael Doherty, a Republican whose district includes Bound Brook and Bridgewater, said he thought the law “sends young people the wrong message” when it came to hard work and entrepreneurship. “People have been shoveling snow for their neighbors for decades, if not a few hundred years,” he said in a telephone interview. “A law like this just shows how overbearing government can be.”

So Mr. Doherty brought a bill before the Assembly this month, which stipulates that ordinances related to soliciting would not apply to snow-shoveling services offered within 24 hours of a predicted snowstorm. In a statement about the bill, Mr. Doherty said, “We shouldn’t let government criminalize harmless childhood activities that were once rites of passage for tens of millions of American kids.”

Mr. Doherty is a frequent critic of Gov. Chris Christie, a fellow Republican, on policy issues — “I’m probably his No. 1 critic that speaks publicly,” Mr. Doherty said — but he said he thought Mr. Christie would support something like this. Mr. Christie’s office did not respond to requests for comment.

On Tuesday, the teenagers had another snow day and got back in business, shoveling about four inches of snow from two houses. One of the houses where they had cleared snow, a two-story, light-blue home, belonged to Daphne Ruben, a special-education teacher at their high school. By the late afternoon, the driveway and sidewalks in front of the house were clear.

Ms. Ruben said she had heard about the teenagers’ encounter with the law from another teacher. And on this morning, she said, she phoned Mr. Molinari at 8:30 to ask if she could hire the duo. Her husband had recently had surgery, and she could not shovel the snow herself. She said she paid the two, who used shovels and snow blowers, with a check for $50, and gave them hot chocolate and chocolate-chip cookies before they left for baseball practice.

The police were not involved.

big government2

DCG

State Department on Islamic State: We can’t win ‘by killing them’ — need to get them jobs

harf

Washington Times: Marie Harf, a spokeswoman for the U.S. State Department, said America can’t win against the Islamic State “by killing them” and ought instead to focus on addressing what she claimed was the root problem — their poor economy — and help them get jobs.

“We’re killing a lot of them, and we’re going to keep killing more of them,” she said during a televised segment on “Hardball” with Chris Matthews. “So are the Egyptians, so are the Jordanians. They’re in this fight with us. But we cannot win this war by killing them. We cannot kill our way out of this war. We need in the medium to longer term to go after the root causes that leads people to join these groups, whether it’s a lack of opportunity for jobs, whether …”

If they had a job, this wouldn't happen. Got it?

If they had a job, this wouldn’t happen. Got it?

Mr. Matthews then cut her off and said: “We’re not going to be able to stop that in our lifetime or 50 lifetimes. There’s always going to be poor people. There’s always going to be poor Muslims, and as long as there are poor Muslims, the trumpet’s blowing and they’ll join. We can’t stop that, can we?”

Ms. Harf dug in and insisted improving the economic opportunities for the terrorist group is the key to turning back their terror, The Right Scoop reported.

“We can work with countries around the world to help improve their governance,” she said. “We can help them build their economies so they can have job opportunities for these people.”

stupid

DCG

Assbakistan funeral procession

Assbakistan – pronounced: oss-bock-ee-ston

coydog

Extremely Graphic Content!

When burying a terrorist
you might want to start by removing the
Suicide Vest 

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