Saturday, December 31, 2016

New Year's eve tips from the Rod Williams School of Drunk Driving

Happy New Year!

It is that time of the year again when more people will be driving drunk than any other night of the year.   Unfortunately, a lot of inexperienced amateur drunk drivers will on the road. I lot of people who seldom get drunk will get drunk tonight. A lot of people will have their judgment impaired and think they are perfectly capable of driving  but they will be drunk and the police will be out in force.

This  guide from the Rod Williams School of Drunk Driving is provided  to help you improve your drunk driving skills and enjoy the new year.

(1) Don't Drive drunk. That is the number one rule: don't do it. Getting arrested for drunk driving is only one reason not to drive drunk.  The most important reason is you could kill yourself or someone else.  If you are lucky and don't kill someone else or yourself, getting arrested for drunk driving could cost you your job, your election, your social standing, custody of your children or visitation rights, a lot of money, and maybe your marriage.

If you overindulge, there are alternatives to driving drunk. Take a taxi, get a hotel room, call a friend or family member and ask them to come get you. If at a friend's house and you have had too much to drink, stay the night.  Use the peer-to-peer livery services like Lyft and Uber. These services are cheep, fast, and convenient. While they are normally cheap, be aware that one of the factors in determining price is demand.  Surge pricing will kick in on New Year's eve and it may be expensive but $50 is cheaper than killing someone or getting arrested for drunk driving.  To use these services you page a ride using your phone. To do that you must first download an app. Don't wait until you're drunk to try to download the app. Here is a link to the Uber app.

(2) Use Sober Ride. Sober ride is a service of the Sheriff's office.  They will drive you home and there is no reporting or penalty for using the service. This is the 33rd year the Sheriff's office has been offering this service.  Those wanting a sober ride in downtown Nashville can head to the pick-up location at 2nd Avenue North and Commerce Street. Those at the Bicentennial Mall event can go to 4th Avenue North and Harrison Street. Pick-up hours will be from 10 p.m. New Year’s Eve through 2 a.m. New Year’s Day. Passengers may request to be taken home or to a hotel in Davidson County only. Drivers will not drop off passengers at another bar or party.

(3) Pick the designated driver before you start drinking.  If you are not going to rely on a commercial service such as a cab or Uber, and you know you are going to be drinking and you are going with other people, then have a designated driver. I prefer being the designated drinker, but someone needs to be the designated driver.
Despite the above advice I know there will be times when a person will have had too much to drink and not think they are too drunk to drive but will have had a sufficient amount of adult beverage that they could register drunk even though they don’t think they are drunk. I myself have probably driven many times when I would have registered drunk had I been stopped. I am not by any means advocating driving drunk, but if you are possibly driving impaired I am providing these below tips to help you increase your chances of getting home safely without getting arrested.

(4) Know that you don’t have to be “drunk” to register DUI. You do not have to be sloppy, falling down drunk to register as DUI. If you think you should not drive then by all means don’t. See the above tips. Often you will not know if you are drunk or not, so unless you know exactly how much you have had to drink and whether or not that would constitute drunk driving, then assume you are technically drunk. You do not have to appear intoxicated or have any of the symptoms that we think of as “drunk” to have a Blood Alcohol Content that legally makes you guilty of Driving Under the Influence. If you drink and you drive you have probably driven “drunk.”

(5) Track your consumption and don’t have “one for the road.” That is what often happens. If  for New Years you are having dinner with friends and you have a pre-dinner cocktail and wine with dinner and an after dinner liquore with coffee, and a champagne toast at midnight, you might register drunk. Try to keep your alcohol consumption to a level that falls below the BAC limit.

On occasion, but not as often as I would like, I like to go to Lower Broadway to listen to live music and party. If I have 8, 12-ounce beers in a four-hour period I should have a BAC of about .068, however if I have 9 beers in four hours that means I have a BAC of .085 and am legally drunk. “One for the road” could put me over the limit. Actually, I seldom have eight in a four hour period, but it has happened.

A female can drink less than a male and a slender person can drink less than a heavy person. For a 115 pound female, three glasses of wine in two hours is drunk. Don’t try to keep up with the other people in your party. Know your limit. Skip a round. Drink slower. Some people assume that wine is less inebriating than tequila shots. That is not so. A 12-ounce beer, 5 ounces of wine, or 1 ounces of 100 proof distilled spirits have the same impact on an individual's BAC level.

Here is a calculator that will give you guidance on how much alcohol you can consume and an estimate of BAC. Please be aware that this is only a guide. If you are drinking on an empty stomach, your BAC may be higher than indicated in the calculator.

(6)  Point your car in the direction of home.  Plan your trip. A good car should be able to find its way home, with a little help.  Avoid places where the police might see you. When I go to the honkytonk strip on lower Broadway to party, I never park on Broadway. I live on the south side of town, so I park a block or two south of Broadway on one of the one-way streets heading south. This means I do not have to circle a block and be concerned about traffic lights and stop signs. The less exposed one is to the police the less chance one has of getting caught. It is worth parking four or five blocks away to reduce your exposure.

(7) Be aware that you are impaired. If you didn’t keep track of how much you drank then assume you are may have had enough to register drunk and use your best drunk-driving skills. "Thinking" skills, like perceiving and evaluating risks, or processing information are not easily visible to outside observers, but they are the first skills to be adversely affected by alcohol. Be aware of this.

(8) Stop the Party. You are having a good time. You are joking and singing and laughing. You hate
to end the party, but if there is any chance that you are driving with an elevated BAC, then stop the party. Say, “OK folks, we need to straighten up. I need your help in getting us home.” Don’t sing or engage in distracting conversation. Turn off the radio. Don’t talk on the cell phone. Give driving your undivided attention. Don’t let anyone in the car have an open container. You may be perfectly capable of driving, but if a drunk passenger is yelling "Happy New Year" out the window, the police may stop the car and give you a drunk driving test. The moment you get in the car the party is over.

(9) Check the checklist. Have a mental checklist. You don’t want to get stopped because you failed to use your turn signal. I was once stopped by the police on lower Broadway and forced to take a Breathalyzer. I knew I had only had two beers in a two-hour period so I was not concerned. The reason they stopped me is that I had not tuned on my headlights as I pulled out into the street. This was in a previous car years ago when headlights did not turn on automatically. The downtown area is well lit and this was just an oversight. The police are looking for excuses to stop you; don’t give them one. Seat belts? Check. Adjust the mirror? Check. Turn off the radio? Check. Turn on the headlights? Check.

(10) Concentrate; pay attention. Be aware of your driving. Don’t relax. Keep both hands on the wheel. Don’t be distracted. Don't answer the phone. If you feel you must answer the phone, safely pull off the road. Don't even engage in conversation.  Make sure you do not weave. Are you staying within the lines? Drive just below the speed limit. Don’t tailgate. Pay attention to the car in front of you. If they put on their brakes, notice it. If you are approaching an intersection with a traffic light, pay close attention. Plan that traffic light stop. Don’t run a yellow light.

(11) Use your co-pilot. Ask the person in the passengers seat to help you drive. Ask them to tell you if you weave or tailgate or go too fast. Make them pay attention to your driving.

(12) If you get stopped. Unless you are certain that you have had less than the number of drinks it would take to raise your BAC level to the .08 level, then common wisdom holds that it is a good idea to refuse the breathalyzer test. It generally is more difficult to convict a driver of drunk driving if no chemical tests are taken.

Rep. Bill Beck
 (13) Use your influence to get the charge thrown out. Be a State Representative or other person (link) with important friends who can get a judge to throw out the charge based on lack of probable cause for making the stop. Despite the police seeing you drive with wheels over the lane line and observing the smell of alcohol, slurred speech, and inability to walk straight and a despite the arresting officer saying you were "absolutely hammered," the judge may rule the arresting officer did not have probable cause for making the stop.

This is an additional tip suggested by a student of the Rod Williams School of Drunk Driving.

(14) If you are seeing double, close one eye. 

I have never been arrested for drunk driving but I admit I have been guilty of it. I guess I have been lucky. As a young adult I was more often guilty of it than I have been as an older adult. Nevertheless, from time to time, I still have probably technically met the blood alcohol level for being drunk.

Stay safe. Don't drive drunk. Drive careful. Happy New Year.

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Wednesday, December 28, 2016

While you are full of good will and thinking about year-end giving, please consider ...

Dear Friends, 
This time of the year you may be feeling particularly charitable and full of good will. With the end of the year fast approaching, now is a good time to reflect on your charitable giving. If you would like to give but don't have a favorite charity or cause, I would like to suggest the following. These are organization I support. 
The Beacon Center of Tennessee is one of the organizations that I am most excited to support.  It "empowers Tennesseans to reclaim control of their lives, so that they can freely pursue their version of the American Dream."  Beacon is a nonprofit, nonpartisan, and independent organization dedicated to providing expert empirical research and timely free market solutions to public policy issues in Tennessee. The organization had a major hand in ending the Hall income tax and in phasing out the Tennessee inheritance tax. It documents and exposes government waste. It promotes school choice, advocates for healthcare freedom, and stops job killing regulations. With Nashville on a path to become the San Francisco of the South, the Beacon Center is challenging the city in court when it violates the constitution. Donate
Alzheimer's Association is the leading voluntary health organization in Alzheimer's care, support and research. Alzheimer's is personal for me.  In November 2004 my sweet wife Louella was diagnosed with Alzheimer's.  As it turns out she did not have that disease at all but had encephalitis. She was only correctly diagnosed a couple years ago but by that time her treatable illness had already caused irreversible brain damage. More than 5 million Americans have Alzheimer's.and more have some other form of dementia.  Dementia and Alzheimer's are not just part of the normal aging process. The number of Americans living with Alzheimer's disease is growing — and growing fast. An estimated 5.4 million Americans of all ages have Alzheimer's disease in 2016. Donate.
Nashville Rescue Mission does more to help the homeless than Metro government and all other organizations combined.  Nashville Rescue Mission serves close to 2,000 meals a day to hungry, homeless, and hurting people in the community. This includes three hot meals a day, 365 days a year at two locations. Each night, hundreds of men, women and children find a warm bed and safety from the streets at Nashville Rescue Mission. They house an average of 800 men, women, and children each night which includes anywhere from 25 to 85 children. In addition, they provide hot showers, clothes, day rooms, case management, and education, counseling and training. May God bless the Nashville Rescue Mission who are serving the people that are often unwanted and unloved. Donate.

Victims of Communism Foundation is not letting the world forget the horror that was, and to a certain extent still is, Communism. If it was up to Hollywood, the education establishment and the popular press the horror of Communism would be whitewashed and swept under the rug.  At any given time there are a dozen movies about Hitler or the Holocaust or World War II on Netflix but the horrible and fascinating story of the 70 year reign of terror and near world-wide domination of Communism is largely ignored. From the famines, purges, and gulags of Soviet Russia to Mao's Great Leap Forward and the Killing Fields of the Khmer Rouge—from the 1989 Tiananmen Square Massacre to the Castro regime's 2012 murder of Oswaldo PayĆ”—communists have killed more than 100 million people. Countless more suffered and suffer still. The Victims of Communism Foundation is not letting those victims be forgotten. Donate.

Tennessee Parks and Greenways Foundation is  non-profit that protects important natural and scenic lands across Tennessee. TPGF works with private landowners and local, state and federal agencies to conserve the best of Tennessee’s natural world by creating parks, protecting buffers and corridors, and through conservation easements and outright acquisition of privately-held land. Beautiful vistas, waterfalls, and critical habitat would often be lost to public access if not for the work of TPGF. Cummins Falls, Black Mountain, Devilstep Hollow and Virgin Falls are just a few of the natural treasures they have saved. I think we are so blessed to live in the majestic garden spot of Tennessee.  I am proud of the work this organization is doing to preserve our State's natural treasures. Donate.

Institute for Justice is the National Law Firm for Liberty. IJ litigates to limit the size and scope of government power and to ensure that all Americans have the right to control their own destinies as free and responsible members of society. IJ often takes cases in which the government is keeping people from earning a living due to regulations that protect current providers of a service from competition.  IJ has had a role in two Nashville cases. One was the case of  Mary Ford. Metro wanted to take her property which housed her music business enterprise and sell it to a large company. IJ prevailed. The other case involved Metro Livery. This company was providing an economical limousine service for a modest price. Metro said the only type of livery service that could exist in Nashville was taxis or luxury limousines. Metro passed ridiculous regulations regulating price, number of clients that could be serviced, and rules requiring central dispatching in an attempt to drive this company out of business. IJ litigated the case a long time and while eventually losing in the courts, Metro Nashville reversed course when overwhelmed by the advent of app dispatched ride-sharing services such as Uber and Lyft. The legal delay allowed Metro Livery to survive until Metro reversed course. IJ is doing heroic work protecting the little guy from the heavy hand of government, in protecting consumer choice, private property, and the first amendment. Donate.

The National Review Institute was founded by William F. Buckley Jr. in 1991, 36 years after he founded National Review magazine. The Institute is a non-profit, 501(c)(3), charitable organization, established to complement its sister organization, National Review, by engaging in policy development, public education, and to advance the conservative principles Mr. Buckley championed. National Review has been the premier source of conservative ideas for over 60 years.  While NR is not as widely know as some popular talk show host and may not be able to turn out a rowdy crowd, NR is immensely influential. Without NR it is doubtful America would have even had a conservative movement and our history would have been vastly different. NR made conservatism respectful and grounded it in principles.  Support NRI.

In addition to these organizations I occasionally help people in need directly. I also give small amounts from time to time to other organizations and causes I deem worthy of support.  I also contribute to candidates running for local, state and federal office.  In my view, preserving our nations character, solvency, and constitutional form of government and defeating liberalism is as worthy of support as is feeding the hungry or curing a disease.  If America fails to remain free and prosperous then misery will increase at home and in the world and there will be no money to do other good deeds. Contributing to the preservation of liberty is as noble as any other charitable giving.

I know peoples circumstances differ and people have different priorities. No one should give out of a sense of guilt or pressure or obligation. However, if you feel led to give, do it. Don't stifle the impulse. I know it makes me feel good to know I am helping others or being a part of something bigger than myself.  It really is a blessing to give.  Please give wisely and give where you feel led to give, but please keep an open heart. It is easy to become cynical and uncaring. Even if you can not give much, a lot of people giving a little can have a big impact.

May God richly bless you.
Happy New Year
Rod Williams

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Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Council Begins Process To Get New Autumn Hills Management

Last Metro council meeting there was a late bill introduced which required suspension of the rules in order to be introduced late. To introduce a late bill requires that there be an emergency and requires a unanimous vote to suspend.  The issue concerned the management of Autumn Hills nursing home.  Among other issues, Autumn Hill did not have liability insurance.

Autumn Hiss is the facility that was formerly the Bordeaux nursing home.  For the last three years, Metro has leased the facility to a private company to run.  Eventually the company that is leasing the facility would buy and develop the land around it.

As long as Metro is owner of the facility, I assume we have some obligation to the residents. Metro may have no option but to intervene; I do not know. It is my hope that the current crisis is solved and this is not used as an excuse to get Metro back into the nursing home business. Metro should completely privatize and sale off the facility so it is no longer a Metro concern.

For more on the issue follow this report from News Channel 5: Council Begins Process To Get New Autumn Hills Management.

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Sign the petition. Make the DEA tell the truth about marijuana.

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Monday, December 26, 2016

Mayor Barry sends Kwanzaa holiday wishes. Kwanzaa is a made up holiday created by a drug addled radical thug that promotes values detrimental to the Black Community.

Mayor Megan Barry extends Happy Kwanzaa wishes and has issued a proclamation making this Kwanzaa week in Nashville. Here is her announcement: 

I am not surprised. I would expect nothing less from our progressive mayor. Progressives benefit by keeping minorities poor and balkanized into isolated enclaves which are depending on government.  A unified assimilated populous works to their disadvantage. Also pandering to these isolated communities is part of the way progressives stay in office. People like Megan Barry are comfortable promoting Kwanzaa. It serves their interest and fits their world view.

While I do not expect better from Megan Barry, what gets me is how widespread the celebration of Kwanzaa is and how people who should know better will send Kwanzaa greetings and recognize Kwanzaa as a legitimate holiday. Kwanzaa is not African, but pseudo African and its principles are not admirable and if followed, would be detrimental to the Black Community.
Kwanzaa is a made up holiday created by Maulana Ndabezitha Karenga, a radical American Black Nationalists. Maulana Ndabezitha Karenga was born 1941 with the name Ronald McKinley Everett but adopted the African sounding name in the 1960's. He was active in the radical Black Power movement of the 1960's and was for a while was a member of the Black Panthers. When the Black Power movement splintered into violent conflict between different factions he was engaged in that struggle. He started a group called "United Slaves" which positioned themselves as more radical than the Black Panthers.  Member of US and Black Panthers killed each other during the violent struggles for control of the revolution. We know that in the sixties, the FBI was engaged in promoting divisions within the Black Power movement. Some allege that Karenga was funded by the FBI to further that division but the truth is unknown.
In 1971, Karenga was sentenced to one to ten years in prison on counts of felonious assault and false imprisonment. He thought two female followers of his were conspiring to betray him and he took revenge. This is how the Los Angeles Times described the case.
Deborah Jones, who once was given the Swahili title of an African queen, said she and Gail Davis were whipped with an electrical cord and beaten with a karate baton after being ordered to remove their clothes. She testified that a hot soldering iron was placed in Miss Davis' mouth and placed against Miss Davis' face and that one of her own big toes was tightened in a vise. Karenga, head of US, also put detergent and running hoses in their mouths, she said. They also were hit on the heads with toasters.
Even if Karnega was not a made-up holiday created by a drug addled radical thug, it would not be something worth celebrating.  The principles of Kawanzaa are not admirable. The first principle is Umoja (Unity). That is not unity among all people however but  unity in the family, community, and race. The second principle is Kujichagulia (Self-Determination). It calls for the right to define ourselves, name ourselves, create for ourselves, and speak for ourselves. Keep in mind this is for Black people to do. It is not a call for cooperation with others or to be accepting or cooperative with others; this is a call for Black power.

It doesn't get better. The fourth principle of Kwanzaa is Ujamaa which is "cooperative economics,"  perhaps the last thing the Black community needs. Ujamaa was the 20-year experiment with African- style socialism in Tanzania. It failed miserably. "Cooperative Economics" never works. Voluntary collectives always fall apart. To urge collective or cooperative economics for the Black community is to urge them to remain poor. The Black community needs a good dose of capitalism; not socialism.

I know Christmas is made up also. All holidays are made-up or declared by a proclamation as a day to honor an event or a person. Christmas evolved over time and customs and traditions and elements were added one on the other. The message of Christmas is a positive message and embraces all mankind. Any thing that evolves over time, to my way of thinking, has more legitimacy than something someone just set down one day and made up.

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