I was reading about the scandal in Illinois and how Governor Blogo was arrested for selling favors. Like many Washingtonians I was shocked at the depth of corruption coming out of Chicago. I am so glad that we're not like that here.
Take our Governor, Christian Gregoire -- she is an angel of the highest ethical standards. It's true that the tribal casinos made substantial contributions to her campaign fund, but does that grant them any special access? Of course not, Gregoire doesn't even return their phone calls.
Bud Norris, the mayor of Mount Vernon, is so careful not to do any favors for his friends that he doesn't even HAVE friends.
Our Skagit County Commissioners are utterly beyond any attempt at influence. It's true that they sometimes play golf with local business leaders. And it's true that those same business leaders might benefit from zoning changes, but of course those subjects are not discussed. Our commissioners simply cannot be bought.
No, we're not like those crooks in Chicago and thank goodness for that. We can trust our local leaders. In Skagit County, we pay our property taxes with the complete assurance that every penny will be honestly allocated.
CHOLERA IN ZIMBABWE. Go to Google, type in "cholera AND Zimbabwe" then select Images -- you will see some very disturbing photos. They are still able to bury the bodies, but if it gets worse, you will soon see photos of dead families lying in the road.
THE NAKED NEWS. The Chicago Tribune and the Los Angeles Times have gone bankrupt. I report the demise of the Mainstream Media with some glee. I have never made a penny from those idiots. There are a number of prominent editors and publishers who enjoy reading Frog Hospital and occasionally I ask them for paying work. They always reply in the negative and say they can't use my kind of writing -- although it's my independent spirit that causes the biggest problem.
What you see in this blog is not news writing, and I don't claim it to be -- but I can write the news as good as anybody in America. So, yes, I watch the big papers go down with grim satisfaction -- knowing that I could help them if they asked, knowing that if they hired more people like me they would not be in such a jam.
EMPTY STOREFRONTS IN LACONNER. Business is way down in LaConner, in part because of the national economic slowdown, but also because LaConner has become one of the most boring towns on the West Coast. Visitors get a huge dose of "Been There, Done That," and they stop coming back.
HEALTH CARE IN CANADA. National health care in Canada is a good thing, and we need to have something like that here in the US, except the part about waiting in line. It's a matter of national character. I lived in Canada for five years as a young man, and I discovered that Canadians are simply more polite and patient than Americans. Therefore, in devising a better health care plan for America, we need to take into account our rambunctious, ornery nature and design the system accordingly. Waiting in line? Can't do that here.
FROG HOSPITAL HEADQUARTERS. We've had computer problems at Frog Hospital, my ancient ( 4-years-old ! ) laptop is wheezing and giving off ozone odors plus I had some problems with the mailing list, plus the hospital work is exhausting me -- all that slowed things down. But we're still here.