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Comment Archives: stories: News: Pith in the Wind: Last 30 Days

Re: “Mike Krause and Bill Haslam Need to Get on the Same Page

Not sure how Betsy could have possibly found fault here?? I think Krause was simply responding to the question: Will there be enough money to respond to such demand? Then Siner skips over what an incredible success this has been. But this glass isn't half-empty/half-full. It is overflowing with great news! For first time ever, tens of thousands of more TN high school seniors are fired up about going to college! Krause has helped ignite that. He should be applauded, not criticized!

12 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Pith Helmet on 10/30/2014 at 11:10 AM

Re: “Veteran Suicides in Tennessee Increased in 2013

Lloyd Bardell is correct. This is exactly what the VA us doing. The C&P exams are nothing more than doctors paid by the VA to say as little is wrong with the veteran as possible (despite the medical records, which are frequently lost or ignored), in order to reduce claims payments. The Washington BVA judge doesn't even read the case file prior to the hearing, and therefore cannot ask relevant questions of the Claimant at the Hearing. It takes months after the Hearing to receive a decision, which frequently includes a remand order back to VARO. We had our Washington BVA Hearing in February 2012, received a decision December 2012, remanding the majority of the claim back to VARO, with an order to expedite their decision. We are STILL awaiting the "expedited" decision from VARO (TBI, PTSD, Knee, Unemployability). This appeal was filed in January 2010. The small portion of the BVA Washington decision in February 2012 that was favorable, ordered an increase in the left knee rating of 20%. We still haven't received a dime of the increase, and instead received a letter from VARO stating there was no increase in the left knee rating. We have been fighting for service-connection for years, repeatedly denied based on inaccurate C&P exam reports, even with a 4 page letter from the VA Polytrauma Rehabilitation doctor stating all of his conditions are service-connected and he is unemployable. Several VA specialists have stated the same, yet VA keeps denying service-connection based on a 30 minute C&P exam in which the examiner is not a specialist in the field related to the claimed condition, and has not reviewed the Veteran's medical records. These examiners are nothing more doctors paid by insurance companies in private sector personal injury suits. They are paid by the insurance company (in these cases, the VA), to write the reports necessary to reduce liability or deny the claims.

Posted by Cindy on 10/30/2014 at 11:01 AM

Re: “Veteran Suicides in Tennessee Increased in 2013

Lloyd Bardell is correct. This is exactly what the VA us doing. The C&P exams are nothing more than doctors paid by the VA to say as little is wrong with the veteran as possible (despite the medical records, which are frequently lost or ignored), in order to reduce claims payments. The Washington BVA judge doesn't even read the case file prior to the hearing, and therefore cannot ask relevant questions of the Claimant at the Hearing. It takes months after the Hearing to receive a decision, which frequently includes a remand order back to VARO. We had our Washington BVA Hearing in February 2012, received a decision December 2012, remanding the majority of the claim back to VARO, with an order to expedite their decision. We are STILL awaiting the "expedited" decision from VARO (TBI, PTSD, Knee, Unemployability). This appeal was filed in January 2010. The small portion of the BVA Washington decision in February 2012 that was favorable, ordered an increase in the left knee rating of 20%. We still haven't received a dime of the increase, and instead received a letter from VARO stating there was no increase in the left knee rating. We have been fighting for service-connection for years, repeatedly denied based on inaccurate C&P exam reports, even with a 4 page letter from the VA Polytrauma Rehabilitation doctor stating all of his conditions are service-connected and he is unemployable. Several VA specialists have stated the same, yet VA keeps denying service-connection based on a 30 minute C&P exam in which the examiner is not a specialist in the field related to the claimed condition, and has not reviewed the Veteran's medical records. These examiners are nothing more doctors paid by insurance companies in private sector personal injury suits. They are paid by the insurance company (in these cases, the VA), to write the reports necessary to reduce liability or deny the claims.

Posted by Cindy on 10/30/2014 at 11:01 AM

Re: “Tennessee Ranks Near the Top in Felony Disenfranchisement

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/conte…

But that is a logical fallacy known as a "red herring." Care to address the issue at hand, john?

1 like, 1 dislike
Posted by AnglRdr on 10/30/2014 at 10:31 AM

Re: “Tennessee Ranks Near the Top in Felony Disenfranchisement

Ah, Anglworm... you must study this.

Let us recall a little voter intimidation by black thugs. Eric Holder was not upset and nothnig came of this, now, this appears factual.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qX4dcvIYk9A

I'm heading to Belle Meade to vote early; I feel safe out there. If it makes you feel any better I'm voting to "protect abortion rights" ( a euphemism if ever there was one).

2 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by john on 10/30/2014 at 10:22 AM

Re: “Caption Contest: Shoney Bear for Mayor!

No, it would've worked just fine.

We have to be real about our transportation future in this city--coddling the single passenger car driver is not the way to do it. Making sure they know they're the primary problem is the way to start.

And I don't disagree that there would be plenty of users on a Charlotte route, which is comprised mainly of small businesses (excepting the state capitol complex), there would be a fraction of the riders of the Broadway/West End corridor, which is both business (from small to large) and entertainment.

0 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by AnglRdr on 10/30/2014 at 10:17 AM

Re: “Tennessee Ranks Near the Top in Felony Disenfranchisement

What you're talking about are poll watchers--they are not any sort of official poll worker--they have zero authority at polling places whatsoever.

You need to provide some citations for your accusations.

2 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by AnglRdr on 10/30/2014 at 10:13 AM

Re: “Mike Krause and Bill Haslam Need to Get on the Same Page

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0 likes, 6 dislikes
Posted by MD Jahid Hasan on 10/30/2014 at 10:12 AM

Re: “Tennessee Ranks Near the Top in Felony Disenfranchisement

Candidate nominated poll watchers are assigned their stations by the campaign director or the candidate. All registered voters names, addresses, and voting record(when they voted, not how) is available in digital form.

That list contains numerous non residential locations listed as addresses. And I understand some of that. After all, the homeless need to be able to vote.

An artifact of HAVA and Motor Voter means pretty much anyone with an ID can vote. Does it make them legal? Well, news out of Maryland today exposes hundreds of ADMITTED illegal voters in one county.

Ulysses was one of the 2 or 3 provisional ballots in the Hollin/Murray race. It was fairly widely publicized. The news wouldn't touch the details because it read like some sort of racist joke. And really it didn't matter. One vote didn't have much effect on an election decided by just TWO votes, right?

That isn't the real issue. The issue I was discussing is similar to DUI laws not being enforced. If they weren't enforced then there would be no DUI's. So there wouldn't need to be any laws against DUI's.

That was my point: allow felons to vote or don't allow them. It is the same result either way. Really though, should we let them out if we don't trust them to vote?

1 like, 3 dislikes
Posted by Randal on 10/30/2014 at 10:10 AM

Re: “Caption Contest: Shoney Bear for Mayor!

There was no possibility of a competent public relations operation for the AMP, unless you mean "putting lipstick on a pig," or "turning shit into gold." It was impossible because the bus will not work on that stretch of road, partially for the reason you note, but for other reasons, too.

I think I was pretty enthusiastic about response w/r/t any BRT I'd be in favor of.

There will be plenty of users around Charlotte Ave. by the go-live date of the Amp. Perhaps not enough to get federal funding today, but I've already mentioned that.

If there were a gleaming new BRT running from Charlotte WalMart to Capitol Hill and then over the river, how do you think that road would look in 10 years?

2 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Diatribean!! on 10/30/2014 at 9:36 AM

Re: “Caption Contest: Shoney Bear for Mayor!

I don't agree at all that an even better design would've gotten people onboard, as it were, absent a competent public relations operation. People hate it not because of the design (look around you--does it look like Nashvillians really care about design?), but because it would inconvenience the single passenger car driver who uses West End.

But I wasn't just talking about design when asking you about whether there is any BRT you would've been in favor of. I am talking about the concept in general applied in Nashville. And, contrary to the Charlotte Ave alternative proponents, it would've been too far from where the people who use it would need to be, which is adjacent to Broadway downtown, and West End--that is where the workers are concentrated. Charlotte wasn't really a very good alternative for the vast majority of likely users.

1 like, 1 dislike
Posted by AnglRdr on 10/30/2014 at 9:21 AM

Re: “Caption Contest: Shoney Bear for Mayor!

Sure. Evidence of such would include, prima facie, less blowback from interested parties. That is, if the design were great, there would not be a large portion of people saying it sucks. It would also adhere to federal regulations that should be front-and-center on any designer's mind (aren't we having sidewalks ripped up and replaced to get cutouts at the corners?).

It could have been designed down the parallel route of Charlotte. I'd suggest that *design* would have met with near-universal acceptance.

I assume we are talking *design* in the sense that it include the bus route itself, including its interaction with the nearby environment and its ability to accomplish the goal of moving people.

A bad design for the AMP was superceded by a good possibility of federal funding and the desire to erect a political monument. Two or three years ago, Charlotte Avenue (and there may be other routes, but I a most familiar with those coming in from the West) had the possibility of excellent design trumped by a 0% possibility of federal funding and a political monument not on the signature road in Nashville, but on one of empty lots.

Given the change in Charlotte Ave. over the last 3 years, I think the administration really missed an opportunity.

3 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Diatribean!! on 10/30/2014 at 9:10 AM

Re: “Metro Pulse Dissolved After 23 Years

"Actually feeling pretty good."

Apparently tearing down others helps you do that, eh, Moost?

Posted by CrankyPants on 10/30/2014 at 8:59 AM

Re: “Tennessee Ranks Near the Top in Felony Disenfranchisement

Ah, anecdotes...

Your first scenario is erroneous: poll watchers in Davidson County are assigned polling stations at random. The only way they know who is registered to vote is by using the poll book. When one registers to vote, one has to prove one's identity, citizenship, and residency. One must use a residential address to register to vote. A non-residence address cannot be used.

And provisional ballots are legally required to anybody who shows up and demands one under the Help America Vote Act (HAVA) (read more about it here: http://www.law.cornell.edu/background/HAVA…). They are not counted until the legitimacy of the voter is established. Casting a provisional ballot is not, in itself, illegal. Your "Ullysses" story sounds apocryphal but I am willing to be proven wrong if you have some actual evidence.

And if you see the law being broken and you do not call the police, you are complicit in the crime.

3 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by AnglRdr on 10/30/2014 at 8:52 AM

Re: “Tennessee Ranks Near the Top in Felony Disenfranchisement

Anglrdr,

Many times, poll watchers are from the neighborhood where the polling station is located. When there are folks you don't know registered to vote at your sisters house then that is a sign of possible fraud. What do you do when you see the guy that robbed your neighbor, went to prison, and is now standing in line to vote? Challenge? How about all the folks that are registered to vote on Cowan St or the Titans stadium? Might be legal voters but there aren't ANY residences at those locations.

There was a voter a few years back named Ulysses. She admitted to being a felon in the polling station. She admitted to being a resident of New Orleans. And the Nashville poll workers allowed her to vote a provisional ballot after explaining to her that she could be breaking the law. The only reason she voted provisional is that she was challenged. The Scene had a reporter at the Election Commission when her vote was disallowed. But Ulysses was never prosecuted. Nor are most of the illegal voters. Thus, no law really prohibits felons from voting in TN.

2 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by Randal on 10/30/2014 at 8:40 AM

Re: “Caption Contest: Shoney Bear for Mayor!

Even great designs can be improved upon.

Would there be a BRT (which includes dedicated lanes by definition) that would meet your standards?

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by AnglRdr on 10/30/2014 at 8:38 AM

Re: “Caption Contest: Shoney Bear for Mayor!

I'll pipe up and say the design was not great. Evidence of this is that the design has been changed multiple times since it was first introduced, including the ah-ha moment about not meeting ADA standards at the signature stop on the route downtown.

2 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Diatribean!! on 10/30/2014 at 8:28 AM

Re: “Tennessee Ranks Near the Top in Felony Disenfranchisement

Jim - everything you wrote in your first paragraph is encapsulated in my word "certain."

AnglRdr - your explanation of altimia is consistent with John's assertion.


There's nothing wrong with introducing additional facts or context to the conversation, but it is fair to say john was right on the point he was questioned on ("Cite, please.").
----

1 like, 1 dislike
Posted by Diatribean!! on 10/30/2014 at 8:22 AM

Re: “Tennessee Ranks Near the Top in Felony Disenfranchisement

The thing is, Randal, that the allegations have been investigated every single election cycle. You know why there aren't any stories that get published about them? I'll give you three guesses.

I'm curious how you would think a poll worker or other observer would be able to tell an ineligible voter by just looking.

2 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by AnglRdr on 10/30/2014 at 8:18 AM

Re: “Mike Krause and Bill Haslam Need to Get on the Same Page

Would that you actually use Krause's quoted remarks instead of your interpretation of Emily Siner's interpretation of Krause's remarks.

Krause: "In many counties right now, I think we’re seeing students take advantage of the Tennessee Promise application who may ultimately go into a four-year school,” he says. “School counselors are making sure every student takes advantage of it.”

There's this from another article:
About half of the students attending community college under Tennessee Promise next fall will get their tuition paid by the federal government, according to state estimates. Those students could have already gone to school tuition-free, even without Tennessee Promise.


I think this is where the phrase "making a mountain out of molehill" comes in. A less charitable interpretation would be malicious bias. The perpetually OUTRAGED are boring. I appreciate Betsy's coming around to say that, on the whole, as a policy, the TN Promise is a good thing; disagreements about execution are expected.

18 likes, 3 dislikes
Posted by Diatribean!! on 10/30/2014 at 8:17 AM

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