Friday, April 22, 2005

Don't Need a Weatherman to Tell Which Way the Wind Blows
If you think about it, the National Weather Service is one of the greatest institutions of the American government. Think I'm kidding? Name another governmental agency that's more useful on a daily basis. And pretty non-controversial, you'd think.

Well, you'd be wrong. Those rat bastards at the NWS are doing terrible damage to the Republic, and they must be stopped.

Rick Santorum has proposed a bill that would forbid the NWS from competing with private companies such as AccuWeather or the Weather Channel by offering the same kind of data they do, such as daily forecasts and conditions in remote cities. In practical terms, it would mean an end to free forecasts and data on the Internet. This changed focus would free up the NWS to concentrate on forecasting hurricanes and the like, supporters say. But it's also a nice big bouquet to AccuWeather, which is, Wonkette reports, a major contributor to Santorum. By forbidding the Weather Service from offering free services, Congress would clear the way for AccuWeather and other companies to charge for information people have gotten free for years.

The saintly senator, to his (small) credit, was fairly truthful about his motivations: "It is not an easy prospect for a business to attract advertisers, subscribers or investors when the government is providing similar products and services for free." It seems to me that the answer for a poor, struggling business that can't hack it in a particular field is to FIND ANOTHER GODDAMN LINE OF WORK, but that's not the way of the corporate whorehouse the U.S. Capitol has become. It's just like the brilliant thinkers of the Repug party to take something that isn't broken and fix it. But I suppose that once you start smashing up the Constitution, it gets easier to do it to smaller things.

We're Ready for You on the Set, Mr. Serling: Earlier this week I guessed that nobody picked "Benedict" in the new pope name pool. Then I surfed back to the prophecies of St. Malachy from the year 1140, which predict that we are down to the last couple of popes before the end of the world. St. Malachy referred to the pope elected this week by the motto, "the glory of the olive." It seems there's a monastic order known as the Olivetans. And the order is called--wait for it--the Order of St. Benedict.

New at The Hits Just Keep on Comin': Elevator Going Down.

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