As I scanned the paper today it seems that we are finishing off the year with a bang culturally. I always forget that this is the time of the year when nefarious and terrible ideas come out to play because no one is paying attention. Of course, there is the fiscal cliff negotiations which are both a media event (I am not sure that they actually mean anything) and proof that no one in Washington leadership of either party should be there. What could be worse than this?!?!
We need look no further than Harrisburg. Here is a story about the upcoming privatization of the PA lottery. Here is the story:
Sen. Brubaker raises questions on governor's plan to privatize Pa. Lottery
Now, of course, I am all for privatizing just about everything, but this one makes me uneasy. I am against the state having a lottery. I am against the marketing language that claims that the money "helps older Pennsylvanians" because I think it would help older folks more if they and they children and grandchildren kept their money to pay for things that grandma and grandpa might need. Any time large amounts of money get handed back and forth and the government is involved thenI fear that some of it will go missing. Still, this would argue FOR privatization, right? I am still worried. Here are the reasons:
1. We are signing a 20 year contract with a British company (Camelot). They are guaranteed $1.7 billion a year. My concern is this. We should stop this foolishness. If we can not stomach that, then committing to it for 20 years seems awful.
2. It does not fix the real problem: as a state we are living beyond our means. This is the real issue that needs addressing.
Not to be out done, however, Vladimir Putin, trumped the fiscal cliff and the lottery by signing into law a rule that Americans can not adopt children from Russian orphanages. This, he says, is for the protection of the children. Having known many who have adopted Putin's arguments are so silly that one wonders how he can keep a straight face. Using orphans for political gain is despicable. It does highlight this subplot that gets NO attention. Americans adopt from Russia and China because our adoptions laws are so bad here that it is easier and cheaper to adopt from a foreign land. Here is the sad story:
Putin signs anti-US adoptions bill