Last Word on the shutdown, Dec. 26

Government shutdown

If my Social Security check doesn't arrive on time Wednesday, I am going to tell the adult on the White House staff to put the self-centered child in the Oval Office in "time out" and take his twitter away from him until he begins acting like an adult.

Just asking

What is happening on Longhill Road just west of Olde Towne Road?

Water service

Is Dominion Energy involved in water service line insurance? Everyone says this is a scam and I keep getting letters from “Dominion Energy.” Dominion Energy can hardly keep the lights on. Really, are they going to insure the water flow? Why don’t they focus on energy — electric energy? If I am correct, then why doesn’t Dominion Energy clearly state they are not involved. If they are, then why isn’t it on their homepage? I am sick and tired of getting letters telling me the world is going to cave in and I need to contact Dominion Customer Home Repair ASAP before the flood starts. Is this a legal entity or a scam?

Looking for …

Looking for a local gastroenterologist who will do more than just scopes, a diagnostician who will listen, ask questions and try to figure out the cause of chronic gut problems.

You can order both veal and lamb shanks from Game’s Farmers Market on Harpersville Road in Newport News, 757-595-1887. Once you get to know them, they will become your go-to meat market. I have their butcher shop's fax number and send them the meat, cut, amount and pickup time about a week before I need it and when I arrive the order is ready for me. They butcher their own chickens and constantly have trays of backs and necks for those of us who prefer to make our own stock. Their produce is also good and in season from local farms, mostly from the Southside.

A new home?

Perhaps the Gazette should move Dan Cristol's column to the Editorial Page, since he's just another political zombie for the left. Then we dear readers wouldn't be confronted by his literary activism while otherwise expecting an interesting read.

This ‘great economy’

I am hearing a lot about how great America’s economy is now. I work for one of America’s richest people and I have not received a raise in six years. I hear a lot about how it is hard to get good workers today. If this is how they are treated, do you really expect your workers to go above and beyond the normal worker?

Virginia taxes

There is no effort to save tax money in this state — they just want to spend. The state is going to receive a bounty because it did not change its standard deduction to conform with the change in the federal tax system. But do they look for ways to save that money? No. Our governor is looking at how to spend more. Begin new programs that will grow and cost more money in the future. Then he will want to raise taxes because we can’t afford the cost for the new programs. Why can’t politicians resist the temptation to spend every cent?

U.S. income

A lot of stories are stating the average American earns $75,000 a year. Can you clarify this? Can you tell us what the bottom 10 percent earns? 20 percent? 30 percent? We can’t fix America if we don’t take a realistic look at our condition. How many Americans can’t afford medical care, or enough food? Our medical care has gotten extremely expensive. It is out of reach of many of us. Editor’s note: According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the average U.S. household income in 2014 was $73,298.

Speedy delivery

Have package, will travel. I had a package that was shipped via USPS from California on Dec. 6. Per the tracking, it went to Greensboro, Washington, D.C., back to Greensboro, back to Washington, D.C. and finally arrived in Williamsburg on Dec. 18. Seems USPS could also need to work on their logistics systems. Thanks.

I’m curious — where does the mail addressed to Williamsburg, Va., go once it leaves the Richmond facility? Does it go directly to the Monticello PO?

New vet in town

Attention, pet owners. There is now a 24-hour emergency veterinary hospital in Williamsburg. The Animal Clinic and Wellness Center on Penniman Road, under the new leadership of Dr. Andrew MacDougal, offers traditional vet services in addition to 24-hour emergency services. The hospital also has boarding, doggie play groups and daycare. Recently, we made the hard decision to let a beloved senior pet go, and the experience was certainly made less painful by the compassionate treatment the hospital staff gave us and our pet. Our family will continue to use this caring service with our other pets.

Recommended

Recently, I had All Smiles Roof Cleaning take care of my roof, my siding, my fence and my driveway. I cannot express my appreciation enough for the outstanding job they did. William and his co-worker were friendly, courteous and took pride in their work.They even cleaned my deck and brick steps, which were not even in the original price.

Our retirement community's loss of handyman Bart J. Burcham is a gain for the community at large. A skilled worker, totally dependable and a true gentleman. Those of you who have been searching for a man whose motto is "No Job Too Small" will be pleased. You can reach him at Newtown Handyman LLC, 757-713-4832.

Road worries

Signage at the intersection of Ironbound and Longhill roads is sorely lacking — and so driving there is baffling.I know the construction there is nearly finished, but if we’re using the road, weneed to be able to do it safely.

Midday Dec.20 and the visibility was 200 yards at best. Numerous other drivers on the road must feel that I can rely on my Xray vision to see them coming out of the fog.

Some Virginia ham

Recently in the Daily Press, there was a feature article regarding the history of the pork industry in Virginia. From the earliest days of Jamestown, pigs were introduced into the colony and thus began the illustrious history of Virginia ham. It enjoyed a world-wide reputation among food gourmets and that reputation endured through the 20th century. Sadly, it has become extremely difficult to find the traditional salt-cured ham. One used to ask the butcher for Virginia or Smithfield ham and they responded with ham from a variety of companies located in Surry, Isle of Wight or Smithfield. Recently, we shopped Publix, Farm Fresh, Harris Teeter and Fresh Market. A couple responded with “country ham,” but it was from Tennessee. How sad. Only Edwards still offers the real ham. Does anyone know a grocery store in the Williamsburg area that still carries the traditional Virginia or country ham?

West Point teacher

This year’s “Bah, Humbug! Award” clearly goes to the local newspaper, which ran an editorial praising the action of the West Point School Board for firing a teacher on the eve of the Christmas holiday season. To the students who protested the action, beware! Big Brother is watching.

Job well done

Our house and three other neighbor's houses lost power recently when a telephone pole in my backyard split in half and broke away about half way up the pole. That wood pole had likely been there 50 years and looked its age. The next morning, a company named Mar Tech (VEPCO contractor) showed up and replaced the pole, which was very difficult to access due to fences, buildings, etc. The repair crew for this company worked all day and had the power restored by dark. It was a huge job. They were hard working, extremely careful not to damage property in the work area and gave detailed attention to every phase of the work. I cannot compliment or thank that crew more for a job extremely well done. They restored the electrical power wires, but did not restore the Cox cable wires (they are not in the cable TV repair business) that came down with the power wires. The Cox wires are still partially on the ground and lying across the roof of my neighbor’s garage. Amazingly, we still have cable TV and internet service, as that fall did not "break" those tough wires. I initiated a Cox repair ticket and am waiting for them to finish this repair job.

Just a thought

“The United States has become a place where entertainers and professional athletes are mistaken for people of importance.” — Robert A. Heinlein

Storm shelters

With Hurricane Florence, how come the state still had to pay a company $31 million to set up emergency shelters that were barely used? The company took back to their warehouses most of the items like, cots, blankets, and pillows — things that never were used. How did the taxpayers get locked into such a bad deal by the governor and lawmakers? The state had to pay $650 a head for 5,775 shelter spots staged at CNU, the College of William and Mary and VCU. We heard CNU had only about five people there. We need a better plan for state-run shelters. What do North Carolina and Florida do for shelters?

Better publicity

Just an FYI: it is not William and Mary’s job to promote non-university events at Kimball Theatre.

Coal ash ponds

Dominion Energy claims billions of dollars to deal with their decades of impounded toxic coal ash, so they had to know from “the beginning” how dangerous to all living creatures, our water supplies and our fragile environment coal ash is. Yet how many of us really understood the danger, short- and long-term impact to our lives, livelihoods? Shame on all the employees who knew and kept quiet. And shame on all those who chose to kick that can down the road until the 15 million cubic tons in Chesterfield County, and who knows the numbers sitting elsewhere, became an open question. So, do Chesterfield and the other dump locations wait until the ponds breach, pollute their water tables and soils? Or do they tell Dominion to deal with scientists, geologists, environmentalists to find answers and heal the problem?

Too much noise

Last week I went to a local store to do some Christmas shopping. Unfortunately, an employee chose this time to do extensive vacuuming. The noise drowned out the Christmas music and eventually drove me out of the store. Now, I will have to find my warm pajamas elsewhere. Store managers: I know you can create a better shopping experience than this.

Border security

Since the president ran on the promise that "Mexico will pay for the wall" the entire Congress (both houses) should hold his feet to the fire to make him keep his promise to the American people.

Illegal immigration costs taxpayers $135 billion a year. “Until the American people are convinced that we will stop future flows of illegal immigration, we will make no progress on dealing with the millions of illegal immigrants” Schumer said. Five billion is a great return on the investment for taxpayers.

Chuck Schumer should take a lesson in border security by looking at Israel. They built a wall and it works to keep dangerous people out. Also, I’m surprised that the Prime Minister of Israel has not called Chuck to let him know his displeasure of how he’s treating President Trump. Unlike Obama, President Trump has been a staunch supporter of Israel.

Last Word fan

Taking a moment to wish the Gazette staff a very Merry Christmas and/or Happy Holidays — whichever you’d prefer. There is always something of interest in the Gazette pertaining to our area, but the Last Word is an absolute delight. One never knows what one will find, from politics (local and national), to area recommendations on contractors, to retail establishments with high marks (or not), to acknowledgement of good deeds — the list goes on. There are opinions aplenty. Occasionally there will be a Cranky Pants post or two, but overall the comments are interesting, informative, funny and entertaining. Thank you to the Gazette for creating the Last Word. It’s a real jewel.

The price of crime

The three thieves who had to be rescued from a coal mine in southern West Virginia after getting lost while trespassing in order to steal copper wire should have the book thrown at them. In addition to criminal trespassing, they should be charged with attempted felony burglary and made to pay the cost of the rescue, along with anything else that catches the fancy of the prosecutors.

Up in Washington

Congress by law is required to enact 12 appropriations bills by Oct. 1 each year. The last time all appropriations bills were enacted was in 1996. Congress is arguably America’s most dysfunctional workforce, with a 21 percent approval rating. A business owner would not tolerate this level of incompetence. Why do we the people keep hiring these incumbents with a 95 percent re-election rate? It’s time for term limits!

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