Of all the recent cuts to local budgets, one in particular is raising a stink: cutbacks in garbage collection.

In Livingston, N.J., residents now have to haul their trash to the curb themselves. A budget crisis in Yonkers led to a switch to once-a-week from twice-a-week trash pickups; after resident protests, it was switched back again. Even New York City is weighing charging for collection, an idea that has some city residents trashing City Hall.

“I think it’s just ridiculous,” said Michael Morrell, a retired public-school teacher in Staten Island. “Next thing, they’re going to start charging us for the fire department when we need to make a call.”

Mayor Michael Bloomberg said last week that he was considering charging residents for garbage pickup as the city looks at “every single thing” to help cope with strapped finances.

Companies and restaurants already pay for garbage pickup, the thinking goes, so why not those living in apartment buildings and residential homes? “We’ll put it in the mix and we’ll see which thing we want,” the mayor said during a news conference last week.

New York City spends $1.2 billion of its $64 billion yearly budget to deal with waste from residences, schools and nonprofits.

Other townships and municipalities across Greater New York are already being forced to make various adjustments in trash collection.

It’s a testament to the severity of local budget crises that garbage collection—a service many residents regard as highly important—is now being put into the mix of possible cuts.

“The stuff that is easy to get rid of has largely been done in the last couple of years. Now things that are generally thought of as essential government services are going to get cut,” said John Weingart, associate director of the Eagleton Institute of Politics at Rutgers University.

He added: “Governments are facing the kind of unpalatable choices that they haven’t had to face—maybe ever.”

In July, Paramus, N.J., began requiring that residents drag their trash curbside instead of having it picked up elsewhere in their yard. Collection of bulk trash was recently axed in Bridgewater Township. Weekly bulk-trash pickup in North Haven, Conn., will soon be limited to twice a year, in September and April.

“Even if you can trim a half percentage point in your budget, it can be significant,” said Robert Ward, deputy director at the Nelson A. Rockefeller Institute of Government in Albany.

In Yonkers, after trash pickup was slashed to once a week earlier in July, collection workers engaged in a work slowdown to protest the firings that resulted in the cuts, according to town spokesman David Simpson. “There were a lot of calls,” Mr. Simpson said. “People were very frustrated.” The city reverted to twice-a-week service a week ago.

“There have been mayoral elections lost or won over snowplowing,” said Mr. Ward. “I’m not sure there has ever been any lost over cuts in garbage collection, but it’s not something a mayor would generally want to do because voters care about it so much.”

From “The Politics of Garbage” by Joanna Chung and Clifford M. Marks, published July 27, 2010 at The Wall Street Journal. |  Digg |  FURL |  Yahoo! My Web 2.0 |  Reddit


The New York came to life Saturday, becoming the Navy’s newest warship – and a proud symbol of fortitude. The $1 billion amphibious transport dock carries 7.5 tons of steel from the World Trade Center in her bow stem.

“The New York will be a visible testament to our resilience,” said Navy Secretary Ray Mabus as the first watch was set and hundreds of sailors and Marines ran onto the decks of the ship, a tradition signaling the official commissioning of the vessel.

Cmdr. Curt Jones, a native New Yorker, took command during an emotional ceremony at the Intrepid Sea-Air-Space Museum attended by more than 6,000 people, including Secretary of State Clinton, Gov. Paterson and Mayor Bloomberg.

“There is a lot of emotion that is associated with this ship for all of us,” Jones said. “The steel that is in the bow of the ship, that motivates us literally every day in what we do.”

The ship, which has a crew of about 360 sailors, will be docked at Pier 88 until Thursday, when it heads to its home port at Norfolk Naval Station in Virginia.

“This ship has been the product of a lot of hard work,” Paterson said. “It is not just named the New York – it IS New York.”

Clinton said the New York will help the nation heal, more than eight years after the World Trade Center attack.

“In that steel, burned but unbroken, lives the spirit we saw on 9-11,” she said. “Sometimes our pain can lead us to purpose.”

Mike Petters is the president of Northrop Grumman, which built the ship in Avondale, La.

“We needed this ship,” Petters said. “New York needed this ship. And America needed this ship.”

For Carl Scheetz, a firefighter with Rescue 1 in Hell’s Kitchen, the ship is a reminder of the city’s strength.

“To me it’s a show of resiliency to the whole tragedy that happened,” he said. “The crew members are great. I met a Marine and went to say ‘Thank you’ to him. He said, ‘No, sir, thank you very much.’

“We have a lot in common,” Scheetz said.

From “USS New York comes to life; ship born of 7.5 tons of World Trade Center steel” by Stephanie Gaskell, published November 7, 2009 by NY Daily News. |  Digg |  FURL |  Yahoo! My Web 2.0 |  Reddit


First, Thomas Alva Edison invented the phonograph. The telephone had just been invented. Edison realized that since it worked because of the vibrations in the diaphragm of the telephone mouthpiece when somebody talked into it, if some kind of stylus could be attached, then it could produce a pattern on something soft, so the sound could be recorded permanently. It should then be possible to play it back, using a similar stylus, and so reproduce the original sound.

His first phonograph used a cylinder of tin foil. A stylus, moved along it by a screw while the cylinder was turning, cut a sound into the till foil from a microphone. To make it play back, a hearing-tube with a stylus attached was used instead of the microphone.

That was in 1877, when Edison himself recited the nursery rhyme, Mary had a little lamb’ into his machine. Over the next few years he improved his invention, eventually using waxed cylinders instead of tin foil. The phonograph cut grooves as the stylus moved up and down. The modern disc , where the stylus moves from side side instead, was invented by Emile Berliner and was first demonstrated in Philadelphia, USA in 1888. The first disc were made of vulcanized rubber. Records made of shellac Records made of Shellac came in to being in 1897, the same year as the first disc recording studio was opened by the Berliner Gramophone Company.

By 1898 the Gramophone Company had opened in Britain and a factory which they owned opened in Hanover, Germany, to mass produce seven-inch records. Paper labels appeared on records in 1900-the famous “His Master’s Voice” Picture was the first (now known as HMV).

The Decca Company manufactured the first portable (wind-up) gramophone in 1913, and the first disc to be recorded electrically instead of mechanically appeared in 1920. Electric gramophones or record-players came in 1925. The first long-playing records (LPs) actually appeared in 1904, but those playing at 33 1/3 revolutions per minute, as now, were not produced until 1931.
Discs made of shellac broke easily, but these began to be replaced by discs made of almost unbreakable vinylite in 1946. That led the way to LPs as we know them today, when Peter Gold mark developed the first ‘Microgroove ‘disc in 1948, with full production starting a year later. This marked the end of the old ‘78s’ – records playing at 78 revolutions per minute.

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Struggling single mother in need of some kindness!

Honestly need $18 for my daughter’s school trip!

Please have a (heart)…
My 3 yr old shouldn’t suffer cause mommy has made bad decisions!

Any help appreciated!

Thank You, God Bless

Looking for a real job… any offers or ideas? |  Digg |  FURL |  Yahoo! My Web 2.0 |  Reddit


The scientific name for coconut is Cocos nucifera. Early Spanish explorers called it coco, which means “monkey face” because the three indentations (eyes) on the hairy nut resembles the head and face of a monkey. Nucifera means “nut-bearing.”

The coconut provides a nutritious source of meat, juice, milk, and oil that has fed and nourished populations around the world for generations. On many islands coconut is a staple in the diet and provides the majority of the food eaten. Nearly one third of the world’s population depends on coconut to some degree for their food and their economy. Among these cultures the coconut has a long and respected history.

Coconut is highly nutritious and rich in fiber, vitamins, and minerals. It is classified as a “functional food” because it provides many health benefits beyond its nutritional content. Coconut oil is of special interest because it possesses healing properties far beyond that of any other dietary oil and is extensively used in traditional medicine among Asian and Pacific populations. Pacific Islanders consider coconut oil to be the cure for all illness. The coconut palm is so highly valued by them as both a source of food and medicine that it is called “The Tree of Life.” Only recently has modern medical science unlocked the secrets to coconut’s amazing healing powers.

From Coconut Research Center |  Digg |  FURL |  Yahoo! My Web 2.0 |  Reddit


LOS ANGELES, Calif. — The fate of Neverland Ranch, Michael Jackson’s former home, is up in the air following the death of the entertainer last week at the age of 50.

Jackson held the ranch in a joint venture with Colony Capital, which helped bail the singer out after he defaulted on a $24.5 million loan for the property last year. The investment company bought the loan for $23 million.

According to Owen Blicksilver, a spokesperson for Colony Capitol, “It’s premature to talk about the future of the property,” he told Access Hollywood.

But earlier this month, Kyle Forsythe, the property manager of the company, told the Wall Street Journal the group planned to sell the property. The company had been renovating the 2,600-acre estate in recent months, removing amusement-park rides and animals including elephants and orangutans.

The company planned to change the name of the property before selling it. The WSJ reported that the group was also planning to let charities host fundraisers there before its sale.

Forsythe previously told the paper that the property, which he believed could be worth $70-$90 million, possibly stood to make Jackson a profit.

From “Fate Of Neverland Ranch Up In The Air Following Michael Jackson’s Death” published June 209, 2009 at Access Hollywood. |  Digg |  FURL |  Yahoo! My Web 2.0 |  Reddit

Oh come on! You had to post it, didn’t you? Don’t you think this is kind of over the line. Even for you? Do you have no shame? No couth? |  Digg |  FURL |  Yahoo! My Web 2.0 |  Reddit

A central furnace or boiler’s efficiency is measured by annual fuel utilization efficiency (AFUE). The Federal Trade Commission requires new furnaces or boilers to display their AFUE so consumers can compare heating efficiencies of various models. AFUE is a measure of how efficient the appliance is in the energy in its fuel over the course of a typical year.

Specifically, AFUE is the ratio of heat output of the furnace or boiler compared to the total energy consumed by a furnace or boiler. An AFUE of 90% means that 90% of the energy in the fuel becomes heat for the home and the other 10% escapes up the chimney and elsewhere. AFUE doesn’t include the heat losses of the duct system or piping, which can be as much as 35% of the energy for output of the furnace when ducts are located in the attic.

The minimum allowed AFUE rating for a non-condensing fossil-fueled, warm-air furnace is 78%; the minimum rating for a fossil-fueled boiler is 80%; and the minimum rating for a gas-fueled steam boiler is 75%. A condensing furnace or boiler condenses the water vapor produced in the combustion process and uses the heat from this condensation. The AFUE rating for a condensing unit can be much higher (by more than 10 percentage points) than a non-condensing furnace. Although condensing units cost more than non-condensing units, the condensing unit can save you money in fuel costs over the 15- to 20-year life of the unit, and is a particularly wise investment in cold climates.

From U.S. Department of Energy |  Digg |  FURL |  Yahoo! My Web 2.0 |  Reddit

The number of swine influenza A-H1N1 cases now tops 5,200 in 30 countries.

From World Health Organization, May 12, 2009 |  Digg |  FURL |  Yahoo! My Web 2.0 |  Reddit

The IHS Global Insight report predicts that U.S. GDP, set to decline by 3.5 percent this year, will rebound into positive growth of 1.4 percent in 2010 and accelerate quickly to 4 percent growth by 2012. The Chinese GDP — the only region of the world in positive territory this year — will grow by 7.7 percent in 2010 and 9.2 percent in 2011.

From “Economists: U.S., China will lead global recovery” by Greg Barr, published April 22, 2009 in the Houston Business Journal. |  Digg |  FURL |  Yahoo! My Web 2.0 |  Reddit