Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Stop the outrage, Dems -- you lost

UPDATE, Friday, Dec. 10 -- Outgoing U.S. Rep. Zack Space said today he supports the Obama compromise.

"I agree with Dick's blog," he said. "(Obama's) not just steering toward the middle but he's exhibiting a much needed willingness to work across the aisle. Added benefit: he openly proclaims his independence from liberal extremists -- something he has to do to have any chance in 2012."

Earlier post below

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Congressional Democrats, and I'm including our own U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown in this group, continue to amaze me.

The liberal Democratic agenda was trounced in the election last month and so it's the Republicans' turn to call the shots. That's what prompted President Obama to quickly compromise with the GOP, obtaining a deal which will keep the Bush tax cuts across the board for another two years and at the same time extend unemployment benefits for the long-term unemployed.

Obama is being pragmatic. He knows that Republicans won't do a deal without the across-the-board tax cut extension. Should the rich be taxed more? I suppose. Warren Buffet thinks so. But let's argue about it another day as we try to get this economy going again.

As Obama pointed out, large portions of the middle class will benefit from the compromise. And if the Democrats stand in the way of that compromise, they will be hurting those whom they claim to serve.

I hope outgoing U.S. Rep. Zack Space offers support for the Obama compromise. I will update this post when I learn of his intentions.

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I was in the Post Office when a clerk asked a woman how she was doing with her packages.

"First-time military mom," the woman replied. Her statement required no explanation.

This is a tough month for mothers (and fathers) whose adult sons and daughters are serving our country in places far from home.

First-Time Military Mom did a nice job putting the season in perspective for me. Good luck to her.

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I've been asked by any number of people about certain aspects of Kent State-Tuscarawas' new Performing Arts Center. I'll answer as best as I can.

Q. How did the bat get in there and is it still there?

A. The bat got in there apparently during an equipment move-in or move-out. Attempts were made to catch the bat, but to no avail. It has not been seen recently so there is a belief that maybe the bat flew the coop, so to speak. The bat did not have a negative impact on anyone's viewing experience, so I'm left to conclude that it was a bat out of heaven rather than that other place.

Q. How does a theater troupe like the “Cats” troupe travel to the show? By bus? Or do they find their own way?

A. The "Cats" troupe arrived in New Philadelphia on three buses. The "roadies" and equipment were delivered by four tractor-trailer rigs. Equipment was unloaded beginning at 7 a.m. on the day of the performance with the help of some 50 people provided by the theater. By late afternoon the stage was set and the actors went through their rehearsals.
Q. Where was the orchestra during the “Cats” show?

A. Orchestra members were off-stage and took their cues from high tech monitors. Neat, eh?

The Peforming Arts Center at Kent State-Tuscarawas

Q. Has anyone figured the local economic impact of a “Cats”-like performance in Tuscarawas County?

A. The "Cats" troupe booked scores of local hotel rooms. Theater patrons are packing area restaurants before the performances. Over the course of the year, the PAC arguably could generate tens of thousands (millions?) of dollars in revenue for the community.

Q. How does pricing work? Do shows come with a set price and then ticket prices figured so as to provide the PAC with enough operating revenue? What say does the performer have regarding the setting of ticket prices?

A. Suffice it to say that setting ticket prices is a very complicated process. Setting up for the one-man Jim Brickman show is less expensive than having to unload four tractor trailers for "Cats." Remember, the theater has to be self-sustaining. But, yes, shows come with a price tag and related expenses. It's all factored in.

Q. What’s the reaction from performers about the new PAC? About the audiences? Different from big cities? Any artists want to return?

A. The simple answer is that, yes, the theater, the audiences and so on passed the professional test. PAC management will have to determine what artists/shows have the power to replicate the interest of the first time around -- so many things to consider. It's safe to say that PAC management already is working on the 2011-2012 season.

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