The Jaffe Briefing - February 5, 2017
OUR TAKE ON THE NEWS IN NEW JERSEY
TRENTON - Perhaps state lawmakers have officially run out of ideas for new laws. Assemblyman John Burzichelli is now suggesting a law that would allow under-aged college students to drink beer and wine - as long as they don't swallow. (Huh?) Under the bill, students ages 18-20 would be exempt from the state's ban on possessing alcohol if it is "for educational purposes during the instruction of a required course for an enology (the study of wines) or brewing training program offered at an institution of higher education," Politico reports. C'mon, does this really need a law? And we also question the parents who willingly pay tuition for their kids to brew beer.
TRENTON - It is just a few weeks into the Murphy Administration, and now Democrats think it is time to revisit a wage hike with a hearing today. Politicorefreshes our memory from 2016 when Gov. Chris Christie wanted permission to profit from a tell-all book, as well as strip the requirement that legal notices be placed in newspapers. Remember his quid pro quo? Christie said: Allow me to make money from a side gig and kill the newspaper industry, and I'll hand raises to judges, prosecutors, cabinet members and legislative staff. Well, Christie's self-serving deal is thankfully off the table, but Senate President Steve Sweeney says these state workers still deserve a raise.
STATEWIDE - The hazy debate over marijuana legalization in New Jersey certainly has its pros and cons. Pro: You get high. Pro: The state makes money. Pro: Business grows. And then the Cons: You eat more pizza. You watch even more Netflix. And, a Con that deserves serious study: Operating a vehicle while stoned. NJ.com reports that cops can only prove you smoked marijuana, but can't currently prove it impaired your driving. In such a congested state as New Jersey, unless you can control stoned driving, how can it be legal?
TRENTON - Call it the "Year of the Woman," as the very first bill passed by the Senate this year would give $7.45 million to women's health centers. It is another slap at the Christie Administration, reversing an eight-year budget cut that had become something of a "crusade" for state Democrats, NJ Spotlight reports. There's another bill that would expand family planning services to more low-income women, making good off another campaign issue. Good to see lawmakers embracing the obvious: funding preventative health care actually saves money.
IN THE VOTING BOOTH - There may soon be plenty more smiles behind the curtain, as a bill is working through the state Assembly that would lift a punitive, but rarely enforced, prohibition on taking photos of yourself while voting. If this law is passed, no longer will you have to worry about 18 months in prison or fines of up to $10,000 for saying cheese while in the voting booth. Democrats, who run things for the moment, are happy to lift the restriction. Just remember the party line, ok?
IN OTHER IMPORTANT NEWS
GIANTS COUNTRY - With the Eagles and Patriots facing off in Super Bowl LII, despondent Giants fans would probably just as soon take the night off from watching. However, they would have missed perhaps the finest moment of yesterday's game was when Eli Manning, Odell Beckham Jr. and Landon Collins teamed up for some "Dirty Dancing" in a commercial spoof on excessive endzone celebrations. Manning and Beckman showed their moves, briefly making us forget the Giants' three-win season and showing us that it is, after all, just a game.
DEARBORN HEIGHTS, Mich. - What the hell is Merv doing now? That was the big question from perplexed residents of a subdivision in suburban Detroit, watching a wacky neighbor trying to mow his snow-covered lawn on Jan. 31. Catch the video of the man bouncing the mower up and down on the sidewalk to get the snow out of the blades. Maybe he will plant the tulips next.
THIS DAY IN HISTORY
It was this day in 2015 that Radio Shack filed bankruptcy, planning to sell half its stores to Sprint and closing the remainder. Shoppers are forced to find another woefully-outdated retailer in which to purchase a $2,000 TRS-80 computer.
WORD OF THE DAY
Spavined - [SPAV-ind] - adjective
Definition: Old and decrepit
Example: The spavined quarterback from New England couldn't catch the pass.
WEATHER IN A WORD
Posted in Morning Briefing