Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Pols and Polls

So what do you make of it?

  • So the AP poll has the Badgers at Number One for the first time ever, right before they have a game at East Lansing, one of the Big Ten's greatest graveyards. If the Badgers go through the rest of the season undefeated (at Michigan State, at Ohio State, home against Michigan State), they should definitely be #1. This is pretty heady stuff for what has been a historically rotten program.
  • As I had feared, voters in my Minnesota House district (50B) decided to send an aging schoolgirl named Kate Knuth to the legislature. Knuth, 25, is the daughter of a long-time lobbyist and her primary claims to fame prior to election were a stint as a Fulbright Scholar and her prominent role in the Irondale High School marching band. Well, Kate has now helped to author what we can only refer to as the "Freedom to Poop Act." The law essentially mandates that public places must provide public restroom facilities to anyone who comes in, even if they aren't a customer. The idea, purportedly, is to ease the concerns of those who suffer gastric distress and chronic diseases, such as Crohn's Disease. I know people who have Crohn's and it is a difficult, nasty thing to deal with. But the problem with this law is pretty easy; there are a lot of activities that one can perform in a bathroom beyond answering the laws of nature. And many businesses have excellent reasons for banning people from their biffs. Kate says no. It didn't take her long to crap things up, now did it?
  • Speaking of excrement, did you hear about John Murtha's new plan? Fund the troops but put such onerous restrictions on the money that the military can't use it. Then watch the troops lose. There is a special place in Hell for the modern Democratic party. Let's just hope they don't all take us there with them.
  • So we got our first look at Sidney Ponson yesterday - he's still rotund, although a bit less so than in previous years. He's not concerned about the excess weight, though - he compared himself to David Wells, the portly portsider who is, at 42, still pitching in the major leagues. Of course, what Ponson doesn't mention is that Wells typically spends about 1/3 of the year on the disabled list. Now given my own lifelong battle with weight, I am sympathetic to Ponson's position. But I don't suspect he'll last long in Minnesota unless he can get his conditioning up to snuff, and quickly.
  • I will get to the Brewers in the next day or two. Really.

4 comments:

hammerswing75 said...

The NARN guys were making fun of the "Freedom to Poop Act" last weekend. I've always thought that the polite thing to do is buy an inexpensive item and then get all the relief you need. Why she thinks this age old solution needs fixing is beyond me.

Mark said...

My guess is that our Kate wants to solve the problem because she cares more than the rest of us. Of course I haven't walked a mile in her Birkenstocks yet, so maybe I'm a little less charitable. The big problem is how this law affects convenience stores and especially liquor stores. But never mind that - moral vanity trumps all.

Anonymous said...

"Well, Kate has now helped to author what we can only refer to as the "Freedom to Poop Act." The law essentially mandates that public places must provide public restroom facilities to anyone who comes in, even if they aren't a customer. "

Read the law. That's not what it says -- it's designed for certain people who suffer from chronic, painful diseases. But making fun at the expense of disabled people by calling them names (especially when they get to say "poop" and giggle like Bevis and Butthead) seems to be all the NARN guys care about.

Hammerswing, for a divinity student, you display an absolutely astounding lack of compassion. Jesus would be proud.

Mark said...

Hey anonymous,

You say it's designed for certain people who suffer from chronic, painful diseases. Of course. But it also does something else - it puts merchants and others in the position of having to make determinations about who can use their non-public restrooms for legitimate relief, and who might instead use their restrooms for retail theft, or undertaking anti-social behavior, etc.

If there were evidence that people suffering from Crohn's disease were somehow suffering because of the lack of a statute, we'd all be for it. But this appears to be a solution in search of a problem, and, as P.J. O'Rourke pointed out, the law the legislature always passes is the law of unintended consequences.

By the way, at least hammerswing is willing to identify himself and his views. And his views don't betray a lack of compassion, rather an understanding of human nature, which any aspiring minister will need. I'd also add that anonymous sneering is pretty lame.