Looniness Stalks Politicians In 21401--or Thereabouts


Zip Code Envy Incites Aldermanic Mania

July 21, 1991|By Candy Thomson

It's silly season in the county. Time for heat to parboil the brain and cause people to do truly silly things.

Take, for instance, Annapolis Alderman Ellen Moyer's attempt to snatch the ZIP code off the letters of people who really don't live in Camelot-by-the-Bay.

Moyer says there's a lot of Annapolis wannabes out there who livein low-class places like Parole but want friends and associates to believe they live in the state capital.

So, as any good politician would do, Moyer drafted a resolution asking the U.S. Postal Service to ban the use of 21401 by anyone who isn't a true-blue 21401.

I don't believe the resolution carried a penalty, but perhaps a paper cuton the tongue would be appropriate. Boy, that hurts.

The Ward 8 alderman said folks are trading on the city's good name and turning Annapolis into "a vaguely described geographical area" (this in a county where civic leaders can't agree where communities begin).

Moyer got three other alder-types to agree with her, and the measure passed, 4-3.

OK, Ellen, if that's the way you're gonna be, how about moving that city landfill of yours? It seems to be sitting in Millersville, which ain't Annapolis.

And your water supply, Ellen. It, too, seems to be sitting on county, not city, property.

And, Ellen, better tell the Annapolis Mall to give back its first name. You don't want some shopping area -- to use your words -- "nullifying the unique character of the city of Annapolis."


And while on the topic of political nonsense, let's not forget our governor, Willie Don.

The man who says state workers must put in a 40-hour week spent $1.7 million to spruce up the Governor's Mansion.

I'm all in favor of a 40-hour week. Heck, most folks rack up more time than that. And I applaud the state's chief executive for making sure the roof doesn't come down around his ears and those of his lady friend.

But $82,308 worth of Governor's Mansion souvenirs? A barbecue and patio? An underground sprinkler system for $3,245? A $47,000 walkway lighting system bright enough to jack deer? Get real, Willie Don.

It may seem likepeanuts to you, sir, but for a single mother who's trying to pay foradditional day care because her workweek just grew, it's real money.


Wouldn't you know it, the real Snideley Whiplash in the caseof Judy Marsh vs. Blue Cross/Blue Shield is . . . the federal government.

The Pasadena woman is trying to get someone, preferably her health insurance provider, to pay for the bone marrow transplant she got to combat spreading cancer.

Her husband, a former federal worker, has a plan administered by some government types who apparently don't want to set any national precedent by paying for a widely recognized form of treatment.

Marsh has filed suit to get her $130,000 medical bill paid. Her North County neighbors raised the other $130,000.

Federal law allows Marsh to sue the local provider, in this case Maryland Blue Cross/Blue Shield.

Maryland Blues officials are upset that their organization is being painted as the heavy in this "one woman against the system" story.

It's true that the state healthinsurance company didn't pick this particular fight. And it's true that Maryland Blues couldn't pay Marsh's claim even if it wanted to.

But before we begin weeping crocodile tears, let's remember that the Maryland Blues refused to pay for bone marrow transplants for two other cancer patients -- one from Millersville -- until ordered to do so by a federal judge.

Judge Marvin Garbis said the insurer was "arbitrary and capricious" in denying the claims, pointing out that theBlues' own medical experts considered the transplants to be an accepted practice in certain cases.

It appears Garbis is going to hear the Marsh case, and I'd be willing to bet my boss' paycheck that Marsh will win.

But why should Marsh, who is fighting for her life, have to go to court to get satisfaction?


And finally, if you think your life is in the dumper, think of the newest residents of Jabez Branch -- 136 tiny brook trout. But do it quickly.

Jabez is billed as "the last naturally occurring brook trout stream in the area," which probably is news to the trout, since the previous residents croaked in the less-than-pristine waters.

A trout sent to Jabez Branch has the same chance of survival as Willie Don at an Eastern Shore picnic.

Last year's trout count, by local environmentalists, failedto find one of the critters. So this year, the state trucked in 136 doomed, er, young trout. How they can call this a naturally occurringtrout stream when they're bringing them in by light rail is beyond me.

So no matter how bad things are, you can thank your lucky starsyou weren't born a trout.

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