The Tulsa County Commission bypasses competitive bidding on bond issuance and contracts, regularly.
When Tulsa News Anchor, Karen Keith ran for the Tulsa County Commission, she pledged to break up the "good 'ol boy" way of doing things. But that was a long, long, long, time ago.
This morning we received a breaking news tip that, yet again, she and the other two fellas (Ron Peters & John Smaligo), just bypassed the mandated competitive bid process, YET AGAIN!!!
In the Oklahoma Constitution, there are mandates for 3 psychiatric hospitals (Vinita, Norman, and Ft. Supply). When Gov. Frank Keating left office, they had just started the transition of Closing & replacing the old 2600 bed psychiatric facility in Vinita, with a network of community-based short term treatment facilities, around the state. Western State Hospital in Fort Supply was also scaled back and converted into a small psychiatric facility. The rest of that campus was switched to a prison facility (as was Eastern State Hospital, in Vinita)
Only 2 new facilities were funded (Tulsa Center for Behavioral Health & the Carl Albert Mental Health Center in McAlester). In both new facilities, there were vacant facilities available, so the cost to set up operations was far less than expected.
But then the legislature stopped the process. The Oklahoma Dept. of Mental Health & Substance Abuse Services (ODMHSAS) had to find private contractors to fill in the void. Private contractors can handle clients who voluntarily seek psychiatric help; but state mental health courts were in a huge pinch because if they cannot "commit" a person to a private facility. So we have this perpetual waiting list and cops end up arresting people on whatever charges they can justify, just to get them incarcerated.
781 takes the money saved from SQ 780, adjusting thresholds for nonviolent crimes (in keeping with the inflation rate), and directs that toward completing the inpatient community mental health facilities.
Our state needs about 20 more facilities to increase capacity to about 1000 more beds.
Jails cost way more (per bed) than psychiatric facilities. The reform actually saves money to operate, but the initial infrastructure expense needs the kind of money that led to this reform idea.
Part One in a series of election previews
The editorial board of Sooner Politics begins posting our research findings on several state legislative races in the coming days. Today we start off with three solid candidates whom we are sure will not disappoint. The 3 member editorial board of Sooner Politics will be posting in other races, in the coming days.
All three of these candidates have been full engaged in Oklahoma issues and deeply rooted in conservative values.
They are innovative and creative in their approach to challenges. These men build teams and find common ground for workable solutions for Oklahoma.
There may not have been a more dedicated lifelong Oklahoma Republican. Tom Daxon Carried the GOP banner in 1978 when he won the GOP's only statewide race. As State Auditor for 4 solid years, Daxon made a strong run to unseat George Nigh, in 1982. Nigh prevailed and became the 1st Oklahoma governor to be elected to two full terms.
Tom Daxon also served as the OKGOP State Chairman. As a college student he was the State Chairman of the College Republicans. His party resume stands among the most dedicated.
But this week Tom Daxon declared his preference for president to be Gary Johnson. The former Republican governor of New Mexico is on all 50 state ballots, but his poll numbers are slumping badly in the final weeks.
While various Republican factions continue their finger-pointing and condemnations, the operations of Evan McMullin are perhaps the largest operation seeking to defeat the Republican presidential nominee, in 2016.
McMullin is an opportunist who is cashing in on the angst of neocon eastern establishment Republicans and the staunch Mitt Romney base, particularly in Utah.
In his recently published article, Chris Powell of the Oklahoma Libertarian party said;
"Evan McMullin is being touted as a dark horse to win the presidency. He’s not.
The message of freedom has been religated to ambiguity by an ever-increasing growth in government. We so often exchange our freedom for a vage promis of security or increased convenience. This is demonstrated by misnamed legislation like "the patriot act" or "affordable care act"/
Ben Franklin once wisely said;
"Those who would exchange essential
freedom for temporary security,
deserve neither freedom nor security."
The 2016 edition of the libertarian Cato Institute’s “Freedom in the 50 States” report ranks Oklahoma second-best for overall freedom.
The Oklahoman posted their take on the report:
The report ranks states “based on how their policies promote freedom in the fiscal, regulatory, and personal realms.” The authors’ libertarian viewpoint leads them to emphasize some issues that one would expect (such as supporting lower levels of taxation and light regulation), but also more controversial policies (such as the institute’s support for marijuana legalization and gambling).
Even so, there’s much to like in the report.
Nate Silver, of FiveThirtyEight.com, did an extensive study of the Presidential Election Polling in the final days of the 2012 race.
As we prepare to go to the ballot box again, let's take a look at which polling firms got it all wrong and perhaps find out where they went off course.
By NATE SILVER NOVEMBER 10, 2012 8:38 PM
As Americans’ modes of communication change, the techniques that produce the most accurate polls seems to be changing as well. In last Tuesday’s presidential election, a number of polling firms that conduct their surveys online had strong results. Some telephone polls also performed well. But others, especially those that called only landlines or took other methodological shortcuts, performed poorly and showed a more Republican-leaning electorate than the one that actually turned out.
Our method of evaluating pollsters has typically involved looking at all the polls that a firm conducted over the final three weeks of the campaign, rather than its very last poll alone. The reason for this is that some polling firms may engage in “herding” toward the end of the campaign, changing their methods and assumptions such that their results are more in line with those of other polling firms.
After 7 years of the progressive (liberal) administration of President Obama, and the abject failure of traditional news media to hold the administration accountable, Americans now fear the corruption of government officials more than any other worldly fear. More than 60% of the 1500 respondents said they fear corrupt government officials more than terrorism.
Chapman University Survey of American Fears
The Chapman University Survey of American Fears Wave 3 (2016) provides an unprecedented look into the fears of average Americans. In April of 2016, a random sample of 1,511 adults from across the United States were asked their level of fear about 79 different fears across a huge variety of topics ranging from crime, the government, disasters, personal anxieties, technology and many others.
The once thriving district of downtown Tulsa known as "Black Wall Street" has long ago turned into a rundown warehouse district. Recent efforts to return it to it's glory days have included massive infusions of government money. But federal, state, and local governments long ago turned their backs on the economic promise of Greenwood Avenue and the many entrepreneurs of Oklahoma's black communities.
Now, Salon magazine reports that FDR's depression era works projects deliberately avoided giving any assistance to the districts in many cities where the black community could benefit. The evidence exists in maps uncovered where zones were marked for exclusion.
Democrats Rewrite Narrative
But Donald Trump is also connecting with Oklahoma if for no other reason than the Sooner State deplores the idea of an east coast liberal telling Oklahoma how to live.
Even the Oklahoma Democrats largely reject Clinton. Little Dixie (the southeastern counties where Republicans still are a speckled minority) will not embrace Clinton. They still remember the early days of Hillary Clinton's senate agenda and her efforts to end cockfighting through federal law.
FiveThirtyEight.com is giving Trump a 99.8% chance of winning the Oklahoma contest.
Trump now approaches 60% and Clinton is more than 20 points behind. Gary Johnson's supporters in the Oklahoma Libertarian Party just hope their standard bearer can give them more than 2.5% of the election returns. That's essential to saving their party's official status with the Secretary of State's office. They spent over $100k to get on the ballot, and they don't want to start over yet again.
In a series of national polls, Gary Johnson has seen his support slip by nearly 30%, in the past month.
But it's not that the #nevertrump Republicans have lost confidence in the New Mexico former Republican. Hillary Clinton's recent climb in the polls has corresponded with the Johnson decline, while Donald Trump did not seem to benefit at all. In fact, Trump's support has slightly moved over to the undecided column.
On Sept. 23rd, Johnson enjoyed 8.9% support. Today he is at 6.4%. During that span, Trump has been unchanged around 39.5%. But Clinton climbed from 41.1%, to 45.2%.
This suggests that the more liberal-leaning folks in the Johnson camp have left to join Clinton. But the more conservative-leaning folks supporting Johnson have stayed.
This also suggests that Johnson is looking to Trump supporters as potential crossover support, but not Clinton supporters.
Anna Wurtzburger, of Hopewell Junction, says she bought a $20 bucket of chicken from KFC over the summer and was disappointed to find it looked much different than what’s in the chain’s ads.
“I came home and said, ‘Where’s the chicken?’ I thought I was going to have a couple of meals,” she told The Post.
“They say it feeds the whole family … They’re showing a bucket that’s overflowing with chicken,” the 64-year-old widow griped. “You get half a bucket! That’s false advertising, and it doesn’t feed the whole family. They’re small pieces!”
“If you want the public to look at your chicken, put it in a dish,” she fumed. “It’s a lot of BS. … I expect to get what you’re telling me.”
Putting her money where her hungry mouth is, Wurtzburger hired a lawyer and filed a lawsuit, demanding KFC change its advertising.
She also returned two gift certificates the company sent her as a mea culpa.
“You know what commercial they should put on? You remember the movie, ‘Oliver’?” she said. “It was about the little boy growing up in the orphanages and he was hungry and he goes to the man, ‘Can I have some more?’ ”
Retired from the Fishkill Correction Facility, Wurtzburger lives off her Social Security check and said the KFC meal was supposed to be a rare treat.
KFC called the lawsuit “meritless.”
David Van Risseghem is the Director of Sooner Politics.org. The resource is committed to informing & mobilizing conservative Oklahomans for civic reform. This endeavor seeks to utilize the efforts of all cooperative facets of the Conservative movement...