Entries Tagged 'South Dakotans' ↓

Do South Dakota Legislators deserve a raise?

If you were asking me that question as their direct employer, I would answer ‘NO’ and probably fire about 90% of them based on job performance.

But let’s play along and pretend they actually get things done.

I would be OK with a 3-5% raise, but not 70%.

It really is our legislators fault they haven’t implemented some kind of system to give themselves automatic raise/decline each year, not the voters. To blatantly ask for a 70% raise at one time is ridiculous.

I have even argued that $6,000 a year is pretty good (they also receive per diem, mileage) and if they are smart they would receive 3 FREE squares a day from the different lobbyist groups.

You have to realize, for the average representative this is only about 40 days. $150 a day is probably around the average individual salary in SD ($39K).

Also, part of the problem is the location of the Capital. A lot of people who have regular day jobs struggle to participate because you have to venture to bum-f’ck Pierre in the middle of winter. Embracing a little technology would go a long way. It reminds me of when Rounds had a fleet of airplanes at his disposal and people wondered why he had to be at meetings in person and didn’t do more teleconferencing. I think the legislature should extend the session to 60 days. I also don’t think they should start business until 3 PM Mountain time and work until 9 or 10 PM. This would only work if legislators with no leadership or committee duties could vote and follow along with the session VIA the internet on a closed circuit channel and could also debate the issues VIA their cell phones. It would get more working class legislators involved, save the state buckets of money and most importantly working class voters could watch and follow the sessions at night if they wanted to. This 40 days in the dead of winter in the middle of nowhere is why our legislature gets away with practically murder each year. Nobody is watching the ruling class of businessmen that make up our legislature, that’s the real issue, not pay. Ironically the ‘night’ sessions would solve another problem Pierre has, the nightly drinking and sniffing around.

The legislature should get a raise, but they need to be logical about it, something that is lacking in Pierre.

Recreational Marijuana Petition, What Happened?

The only POT that is legal in SD.

Only a few months ago, I was told that things with the REC petition were doing very good, even better than the medical petition.

Apparently that is NOT the case today.

Do I think I was lied to? Not at all. It seems what is evident today is that the circulators who promised to circulate didn’t follow through. Trust me it happens, I have seen it with local petition drives. That is why when I take a sheet, I don’t make any promises.

But what worries me more is that there seemed to be a bigger effort to get signatures for medical marijuana first (they did submit enough initially, but may not have enough to be certified). Let’s say that the medical petition is certified and does make the ballot, I still don’t give it much chance of passing.

Why is that?

As I have told the past two campaigns on this topic, people don’t want to fiddle around looking for a doctor to prescribe them medical marijuana, or hold a card, etc, etc. And recreational smokers don’t consider it fair either. People just want to go to the corner Jane store, pick up their weed and use it. Is it really anyone’s business if that is for pain, meditation and self-reflection or to simply just get high and check out for awhile?

Theirre efforts should have been full boar into getting rec on the ballot, it would have passed. Medical, I guess we will see.

Want to reduce opiod use? Marijuana.

A recent news report says that Sanford Health is researching alternatives to opiod pain relief and reducing there usage.

One word; Marijuana.

And I am not talking about the medical stuff they have to make syrup out of, I’m talking about good old natural THC. Either vape it or get it in an edible. It has been a natural pain reliever for thousands of years. And here’s why the medical community and big pharma doesn’t like it.

Unlike prescription drugs that are often made from dangerous highly addictive chemicals, Marijuana can be grown at home without a prescription from a doctor.

Obviously, it cannot be used for extreme pain but it can help with minor aches and pains, relieves spasms, increases appetite and can relieve minor stress and depression.

Like any drug overuse can cause problems, uh like, laziness and laughing a little too much. There is NO record of anyone dying from an overdose of Marijuana, but can cause anxiety in some people.

Why the medical community doesn’t study this natural drug more is beyond me.

There is a good chance that on Monday valid petitions will be turned in for Recreational Marijuana to be put on the ballot in 2018. I think it will pass with over 55% of the vote if it makes the ballot.

We not only need to embrace this like other states have for pain relief but the sale of recreational marijuana could change state funding like nothing before and has shown to reduce crime and criminal justice spending.

Enough goofing around with dangerous chemicals and skyrocketing crime, South Dakota needs to embrace the legalization of Marijuana.

 

South DaCola Podcast 8: Legislator & Mayoral Candidate Greg Jamison

We touched on the upcoming legislative session, Greg’s run for mayor, and a few ghost stories.

A new wind (smell) may be blowing over South Dakota in 2018

There are many stories circulating about the initiatives and referendums ‘circulating’ the state, but one seems to be standing out. I am hearing that ‘recreational’ marijuana is doing very well.

I have also personally opined that if rec gets on the ballot, it will pass. I wouldn’t even be surprised if it gets as high as 56% of the vote.

Besides the fact that people who smoke or have no problem with people who smoke voting for the initiative, there are many who don’t want to go through a prescription process to get the pain relief they need from a natural occurring drug. So who else would vote for rec use? Educators would get a dedicated 40% in revenue from the sale of the product. That could easily infuse over $20 million in the first year. There is also all the savings in law enforcement and incarceration, which should make police and state’s attorneys across our state very happy.

The only argument recently gaining steam against legal rec is ‘drug’ driving. Guess what, drinking and driving will still kill more people each year than any other kind of drug use. That and whether or not you are legally smoking and purchasing marijuana or not, just like drinking and driving, making it a legal product doesn’t change whether people will drive while using it.

Of course our last hurdle will be if our state legislature and AG will let this legally be put on the ballot, and if it passes, let it become state law. Like IM 22, if they override this, it would quite possibly be one of the stupidest things they have ever done (I know, where do we begin on that list).

Unlike Marsy’s Law and IM 22, the legislature, the citizens, the business community, and law enforcement best get ready, legal rec marijuana could be a stark reality next Fall in SD, instead of meddling with it or f’ing up this opportunity, let’s embrace it.

South Dakota Middle Class left behind, working more

What we have known for awhile, the gap between rich and poor in SD getting wider;

6. South Dakota
> Middle class income growth 2011-2015: 5.0% (23rd lowest)
> Fifth quintile income growth: 9.8% (13th highest)
> Fifth quintile share of income: 48.2% (8th lowest)
> Middle class household income: $53,266 (23rd lowest)

South Dakota has one of the healthiest economies in the country. Only 2.8% of the state’s labor force is out of a job, the second lowest state unemployment rate in the country. In addition to a healthy job market, incomes are more evenly distributed in South Dakota than in most other states.

This may not remain the case for much longer, however. In the last five years, incomes among the middle 20% of earners have increased by only 5.0%, slightly slower than the 5.3% income growth among comparable households nationwide. Meanwhile, incomes among the wealthiest 20% of households in the state have gone up by 9.8%, higher than the comparable 8.4% average national income growth in the top quintile.

Cameraman Bruce weighs in

An open Note to Mayor Mike Huether

Nice try trying to snow us on a hot July day as the roads are blowing apart from your poor planning. The heat buckles caused by doing superficial street repair in an effort to save money for your precious play palaces. Many have warned you for years to reconsider wasting the second penny sales tax on bond payments.

The 6,500 who signed our petitions in 2016 were trying to warn you about wasting money on the Romantix Annex Administration Building because sales tax revenue was already faltering.

The arrogance of taking the refunded levee bond money and saying it was free cash to spend on a swimming pool so you could do a cannonball on our dreams of smoother roads.

You started out by deceitfully planning to be open about contracts and plans for Sioux Falls’ future. The Events Center is a case in point. We have been witness to your backroom deals and special arrangements to suck money out of Sioux Falls, never to be seen again. I can’t even imagine the millions that will be flying out the door with 6 sold out Garth shows.

What could Sioux Falls do with the $20 – $30 million per year now being spent on bond payments for your vanity projects?

Your vanity projects have cost many areas of Sioux Falls their future. As Rex Rolfing said at the recent Informational, projects have been moved to the 41st legislative day, effectively killing them.

What a legacy. Only you cast the deciding votes to create your vision of a boom town and as all boom towns go, there is a bust to follow. A new mayoral style coming not soon enough will be saddled with your poor decisions.

Billie Sutton’s Campaign

I’ve got friends in LOW PLACES called the Dem Party and their EX FACES in the executive office . . .

After all the Democratic party policy rejections by Billie Sutton over the years why would he run as a Democrat? The meetings I have been in where he has spoken he comes across as a west river hick who uses the FOX news Rush Limbaugh terminology at every stop. If you are claiming to be something, be it.

His decision to bring in Susie as his campaign pro is a sure sign of defeat.

SD Supreme Court made the right decision in Bosworth case

While I disagree with what Bosworth did, I do support the decision in dropping the perjury charges.

I was often baffled how she could be charged with both. She either lied about the documents or she filed false documents. As I watched the court proceedings it seemed obvious to me she was definitely guilty of the false documents charge, but I wasn’t sure she committed perjury.

The ironic part is that the crime she is charged with happens all the time, probably not to the extent of the circulator being out of the country, but I have seen petitioners circulate petitions at events and just let them go from table to table on their own without witnessing every signature, which is very similar to what she did.

I also think while she really screwed up on this and is guilty, I don’t think the charges are serious enough for her to lose her medical license. I guess we will see what the medical board decides.

 

The Wind Haters in Lincoln County Fake Science wins big time, 57/42

Like the voting down of solar energy a few years ago in Minnehaha county, once again, the Haters of alternative energy wins again in our region.

Take a deep breath while you can, the end is near.

Tim Bjorkman to roll the dice with the Dems

I’ve know about Tim’s potential run for several months, but since he was still serving as a judge, several people close to the campaign had to keep the zip lipped, so to speak.

Congress wasn’t Tim’s first pick, he considered a Governor run, and was encouraged by many to run for AG instead (I actually think that would have been his best move and best chance at winning). But he settled on Congress, which also gives him a better chance than governor.

A well connected Republican told me over the weekend that Tim’s decision to run for Congress may have had to do with a little horse trading between his camp and a possible governor campaign camp for Huether, and the reason why MMM put out the very bizarre press release that he was not running for Congress. I’m sure that ordeal made Tim want to take an immediate hot shower.

There of course is having the support of a major political party. (insert laughter here) But since the Dems made Sutton the ‘chosen one’ for the governor race, there is a potential that Mr. Bjorkman may not have a primary challenge, though there are some rumblings about a West River person announcing soon from the Democratic Party.

To be honest with you, after hearing Tim speak a few times now at Dem Forum, my opinion is he will be a true contender to either Dusty or Sharp Shooting Shantel. He is sharp as a tack and has immense compassion for people.

I just hope he is smart enough to run his own campaign and only depend on the state party to ‘assist’ him with certain things instead of running his campaign, but only stuff they can’t screw up, like licking envelopes or handing out candy at parades. Hopefully they will just concentrate on Sutton’s loss so they can allow Mr. Bjorkman to win.