Thanks, Nanny State, for Looking Out for My Ass

Categories: Schutze

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I'd like to say a quick thank you to the Nanny State, before the moment passes and I forget all about spending a good deal of Tuesday cowering in a downstairs bathroom preparing to find out what my everlasting reward will be.

Hey, thanks, Nanny State. Couldn't have made it without you, even though that's sort of a dangerous confession to make these days.

Thanks for having a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association capable of launching satellites that can spot tornadoes as they occur and then warn me to go cower in the bathroom for a while.

Also, thanks for those sirens that went off, city of Dallas. Those were really cool. We heard them. My son and I popped in and out of the bathroom all afternoon according to when the warning sirens went on and off. It worked out great.

And speaking of local government generally, I know that I do bitch and moan at you a lot when I think you haven't done this or that little thing right for me, but yesterday I was quite grateful to see all those cop cars and ambulances out and about.

nanny flag.jpg
"I love you, Nanny State!"
I do try to be as self-reliant as possible, because I'm getting ready for the inevitable day when Texas will be taken over by the Tealiban. We're almost there already, aren't we? I know that when the mullahs of the Tealiban do come around to check on us, they're going to be pretty tough on people they think are still dependent on you, Nanny State, so I want to be able to show them that I'm doing everything I can for myself.

What worries me is this. I do not have any satellites. And I don't think, even if my neighbors and I pitched in together on one, that we could swing it. First thing I did the morning after the tornadoes was Google "cost of a weather satellite." Oh, wow.

It's like $290 million for just one measly weather satellite and then between $50 and $400 million just to launch the thing. No way can we do that and still make our car payments.

In fact, I don't think we can even afford a police car. There was an Associated Press story recently that said the average cost of a fully loaded cop car was about $50,000. The same story said we could buy the cheapest, smallest drone aircraft for about the same amount.

I have to admit, a drone would be pretty cool to have. We could put a camera on it and use it to spy on pool parties in nearby hoity-toity Lakewood. Those people are up to no good. But see, now we already have judgment issues on how we spend our money.

Realistically, if and when the Tealiban mullahs do come around with their bamboo batons to beat us senseless for consorting with you, Nanny, I think we've got to tell them that we need you sometimes. We just cannot do some of this stuff on our own.

Just the streets, for example. During the tornado day when the really big rains hit, I really liked the way the water all flowed downhill and then went into the storm drains. I guess we could get out there on the weekends with a plow and some oxen and dig our own streets, but I am quite sure we would never figure out how to get the water to go like that, especially if certain neighbors suggested we all go indoors instead and watch drone video of Lakewood pool parties. Nanny, some of my neighbors are naughty!

I'm just saying. When we have a major emergency like what hit North Texas Tuesday, we should all pause just a moment to reflect on how lucky we are to have a Nanny State looking out for our interests.

Not saying we shouldn't listen, if somebody says they have a Plan B. In fact, I'm all ears. But until I hear it, I've got to stick with Plan A.

Nanny, you were sweet! Thanks again.

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56 comments
Perry Moore
Perry Moore

I know that this is a minor fact in your world, Mr. Schutze, but you really ought to thank me and all your other taxpayer neighbors for helping you buy that fancy-ass satellite and siren system. It did me one hell of a lot of good out here in the sticks. Thank God that I have a rescue mutt that works just as well when it comes to early warnings on those pesky tornadoes. Now, if you would care to return the favor by sending me a bag of Gravy Train, I will write a slick piece entitled "Thanks, Mr. Schutze, For Looking Out for My Ass."

DaTruth
DaTruth

I wonder if all those anti socialist Teapublicans who got hit by the tornadoes are out there picking themselves up by their bootstraps and denying any and all government assistance.

RTGolden
RTGolden

Here's some fairly recent examples of JimS glorifying the local governments marvelous feats of storm water engineering:http://blogs.dallasobserver.co... have fixed more than your sidewalk, eh Jim?

mynameislibtard
mynameislibtard

I love how the comments to your articles affirm again and again that conservatives have NO SENSE OF HUMOR! 

MushMouth1
MushMouth1

Rick Santorum - National Weather Service Duties Act of 2005 - AccuWeather - campaign contributions. Remember?

Bob
Bob

Jeez, people. It's satire. Lighten up.

JamesThomas
JamesThomas

Jim obviously doesn't understand much, such as the distinction between state/local government and the federal government.  Those sirens went off because of the local government... the way it should be.  Those cops and firefighters went out because of the local government... the way it should be.  Could you imagine if all those entities were handled at the federal level?  If in order to send a firetruck out the order had to work it's way up through the bureaucracy in Washington first?  That would just be stupid.  And yet there are some who want education, healthcare, etc. handled that way.  Just asinine.

What Jim and most close-minded liberal never understood about the Tea Party or any small government movement is that it's not anti-ALL government.  It's a belief that government is handled best and most efficiency when wherever possible it is taken out of Washington and put in the hands of the state and local government where it can more efficiently be handled.  I for one thank God the tornado sirens went off because somebody in Dallas said they should go off... not because we had to wait for somebody in Washington to say it.

Mike
Mike

Jim,I don't think you understand the concept of "the Nanny State."  Public safety is a legitimate function of government.  The warnings are part of the public safety function.  No one came by to insist that you cower in your bathtub, or to demand that you eat a low fat diet while taking cover in that bathtub - those would have been a Nanny State response.

smithjosh
smithjosh

Jim doesn't know the reasons for the formations of a government or the definition of a public good evidently.  Here you go Jim:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/P... 

And since when does a tornado siren interfere with my personal choice of whether or not to take shelter?

NewsDog
NewsDog

Jim,I like the overall tone of this but you might be a little confused (nothing new for you).   NOAA isn’t a nanny state thing it’s a business thing, that’s why it’s under the Dept of Commerce. Weather affects crops, farming is a big business. Weather affects construction, roads and homes are big business. Bad weather damages things; insurance is a real big business. Weather affects government’s ability to function, government is the damn biggest business there is.    

mynameisURL
mynameisURL

Although I understand the point you're trying to make to all of those, "I'm Mr. self-reliant and don't need none of yer big gubmint services!" regarding our collective reliance critical infrastructure such as that used to warn the GP about weather and such, my sarcasmometer just exploded and I demand recompense!

Phelps
Phelps

Well, Steve Blow, you certainly put all those anarchists in their place.

Albert
Albert

Jeez.

A while back you got upset that the tea party types badmouthed corporate welfare, now you're upset at the nanny state?

Jim, have you had your LIBido checked lately? Is someone piping Limbaugh into your bedroom at night?

Titus Groan
Titus Groan

Get your government hands off my tornado!

Scruffygeist
Scruffygeist

What the fuck?

I'm going to chalk this column up to a deadline or quota or writer's block or something, rather than view-trolling.

Paul
Paul

Jim, you got it a little bass ackwards there ... if it were a nanny state, some one would come by your house and order you into the storm shelter that you were ordered to build.

Emergency response to natural disasters is basic legitimate function of local government, whereas string thingy  bridges, sports arenas and subsidies to sports teams I am not so sure of.

Glad to hear that you came out unscathed from the storms.

Bmarvel
Bmarvel

Alas, libtard, it's not just the right that's bereft of a sense of humor. I came of age close to the epicenter of 1960-70s  left-wing nuttery. ALL True Believers regardless of political orientation give up their sense of irony as the price of admission. (This is true as well of the Radical Center.)The problem is bigger than politics: It's part of the zeitgeist of our times, in which parents no longer tell their children fairy tales; in which presumably sober adults imagine their offspring will become witches and wizards if they read Harry Potter; in which triviality is given the status of serious thought and humor itself is suspect and endangered. That some of the above commenters actually thought JimS was serious -- well, he was in a way, but not in THAT way --  is just more depressing evidence of the numbing of the American psyche.

 

scottindallas
scottindallas

 Those sirens are Civil defense warning sirens that date back to Ike. 

Anon
Anon

that's why they universally oppose taxes at EVERY level? last I checked no Republican in Texas was elected for saying that we have done a cost benefit analysis and decided that we already provide one of the worst public educations in the country and should therefore dedicate more resources to public education. within the city of Dallas, those same forces opposed the recent tax hike because.... well, because the government should always take less of your money than it used to, not more. do you honestly believe the government could ever get small enough that some Tea Partiers would step back and say, "whoa, that's taking it too far". oh wait, if we got rid of their social security and Medicare payments.

JimS
JimS

James, do you really not get that local sirens went off because the federal satellites warned them of impending doom? Really? You don't get that? You people really are the Tealiban, aren't you.

mark zero (Jason)
mark zero (Jason)

Public safety is a legitimate function of government.

The health of citizens frequently becomes a matter of public safety, as well.This is why we have public immunization programs, public programs for the mentally ill, birth control and family planning, annual checkups, etc... oops

Sa
Sa

smithjosh - it's "whether" in this context...oh wait, was that a joke?

Oops.

If not a joke, your Language Arts grade for today is "F."

JimS
JimS

Then why doesn't some business run NOAA instead of the government?

Bmarvel
Bmarvel

Ah, poor Albert. Slept clean through the class on irony. 

JimS
JimS

Albert, you and I are not destined to sync.

mightcan
mightcan

I'm not sure that's correct, at least according to Garland. They DON'T view "Emergency response to natural disasters is basic legitimate function of local government", Note Garland City councilman, ""If you don’t have enough sense to come in out of the rain, you can’t expect government to take care of you," said council member Rick Williams. "It’s just not a good way to spend money." link: http://www.kvue.com/news/state...

JS has it exactly right here I think

mightcan
mightcan

"in which triviality is given the status of serious thought". You mean, like calling someone a "libtard"?

scottindallas
scottindallas

Conservatives love racist jokes, but those aren't funny to liberals.  Many jokes aren't funny to someone who tries to be sensitive to the weak--the subject of so many jokes. Was "blackface" funny? What about Borat? Perhaps it would be more daring to dress as a Western frontiersman and sing, "steal the Indian's land" or as a Jewish settler and sing, "steal the Arab's well." Despite no evidence of real anti-semitism, despite the comfortable position of Whites and Jews in this nation, we wouldn't laugh, and might be threatened. How, do you suppose threatened people feel when lampooned by their "masters?" There are many jokes that aren't funny, depending on your perspective.

JimS
JimS

Yeah, most of them are on the tit way bigger than any welfare mom in America. They just don't want her to get any money.

smithjosh
smithjosh

Jim, do you really not get that this is the proper role of government that Libertarians and our confused Tea Party cousins actually support?  The NOAA budget could fit inside a rounding error on the reported medicare fraud expense report.

Sa
Sa

Jim, I love your columns, but...it's "Taliban," not "Tealiban."  Unless the "Tealiban" is a different group that wears teal? 

Yeah, I make typing mistakes too, but I'm not a talented, published writer.

Ed D.
Ed D.

Perhaps James believes that the FCC's Emergency Alert System, NOAA's All-Hazards Radio, and the National Weather Service are all somehow part of local government.

Paul
Paul

 JimS, in the old days growing up in Dallas, someone down at City Hall would look at the window and decide whether or not to turn the sirens on.

smithjosh
smithjosh

Edited.  Thank you for the proofreading and lesson in humility, Sa.  I'm not clever enough to make puns that subtle.

NewsDog
NewsDog

Because this is a rare example of something the government can, and does, do better than business. Although, there are a couple weather satellites up there that were paid for by private entities.

I believe it was under Clinton that someone suggested cutting NOAA as a budget saver. It seemed that someone who didn’t live somewhere that weather can kill you didn’t think it was all that important.   The Governors, Senators and House Reps (from both parties) of tornado alley states howled. The same elected officials of the gulf shore states screamed louder than the hurricanes.

Sa
Sa

I live in Garland, and the latest newsletter from the city (Garland City Press, dated April 2012) says in the "Message from the Mayor" that the 2012 city budget does include "funding for emergency/severe weather outdoor sirens."  I fished it out of the recycling box to check.

I don't know if the sirens went off on Tuesday because I was in Carrollton.(BTW, the sirens *definitely* sounded - and loudly -  in Carrollton.)

So we have a nutty council member.  Not exactly front page news. I don't live in his district, thank goodness.

Citizen Kim
Citizen Kim

Correct that to "soon-to-be ex-council member Rick Williams."

Paul
Paul

 So I guess if someone runs a red light in Garland and t-bones me, I shouldn't expect an ambulance to show up ...

Were the police and ambulances running around and taking people to safe locations?  I don't think so.  Were they responding to people to people who had been injured?  Probably so ....

Bmarvel
Bmarvel

 mightcan,Yes, or labeling oneself a libtard, as in the comment that gave rise to my response, or otherwise embracing the meaningless word "libtard."

Bmarvel
Bmarvel

 Scott,Fortunately, the poor and powerless throughout all time have been able to turn the weapon of humor -- sarcasm, irony, jokes -- against their oppressors. Often, it's the only weapon they have. So in general I'm against disarmament. Take care of the underlying social problems, and the humor will take care of itself.

mark zero (Jason)
mark zero (Jason)

I have no doubt that many of them are firmly opposed to personal welfare programs and some would even refuse to use them if they fell into need. Funny, though, how few of them get upset by corporate welfare, at least when it's their own businesses that benefit from it.

Crap Detector
Crap Detector

 Yeeeeeewwwwww...I don't want those in my face!

JimS
JimS

Actually, though, I appreciate the help. Explaining them myself gets to be heavy lifting,especially if it's a day later and I don't get them any more myself.

Bmarvel
Bmarvel

Sa,Apparently not much of a reader, either. Tealiban, as in Tea (Party + Taliban.Man, I hate explaining Jim's jokes. 

scottindallas
scottindallas

 It is a good example of a valuable public function.  It's not that rare.  Utilities are another way of describing these markets.  Indeed gov't does encroach on areas of the economy it shouldn't.  We need a much more serious conversation about this.  TX DOT builds highways cheaper than outsourcing.  Gov't performs utilities functions often as well or better than the private sector.  The greatest mistake is to try to create a "competitive market" where none exists.  Consider that Pharmaceuticals spend more on advertising than research.  Why would we want electricity companies competing for business?  All those marketing budgets for the same product, sent down the very same (single) distribution channel; all waste. 

NewsDog
NewsDog

No, the instance I was referring to was during mid '90s

Anon
Anon

Actually, it was under Obama. You know, circa 2011? Republicans wanted to shrink the NOAA budget. Do not make broad assumptions about bi-partisan agreement on anything in Congress.

Justin Julian
Justin Julian

It's not a joke, simply because he didn't mention getting out of your car and cutting off your Slausson.

Paul
Paul

 It's a joke son, I say ... , It's a joke son ... Foghorn Leghorn

GusMitchem
GusMitchem

There are also floods, landslides, ice events, snow events, wind events, droughts/fire/etc  too. 

All have their own brand of fun

Paul
Paul

 This is my joke about natural disasters:

Living in the US, you can have one of three types of natural disasters hit you: hurricane, tornado; or, earthquake.  Here is the difference between them:

Hurricane

A guy comes on the TV and says that there is a hurricane out in the Atlantic. It is about 7, 8, 9 days away.  We'll keep an eye on it and let you know when it is a day or two away from us.  So in the meantime, check your emergency kit and make sure you have canned food, bottled water and a safe place to evacuate to.  Now on to sports with Dave.

Tornado

A guy comes on the TV and yells "HIDE!"

Earthquake

Regular programming is interrupted about 4 in the afternoon and the announcer says:  "The preliminary reports are that there was a 7.1 earthquake centered somewhere near the Slausson Cutoff this morning at 5:30.  There are reports of damaged buildings.  Details at 10. Now back to our regular programming."

I'll take a hurricane any day.

mightcan
mightcan

I might have misunderstood, but the take away from JS article was the "warning sirens". The Garland City Councilman clearly didn't think they were a government responsibility. It's too great a logic leap for me to make from "warning sirens" to "police chauffeurs" but I've been short on logic before!

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