NEWARK - If the city wants its computers back, it's going to cost $30,000. TAPInto Newark scored itself a scoop, reporting how hackers seized control of some of the city's computers on Friday, rendering them completely useless, unless the city pays the handsome ransom. City officials admit to the virus, after the news site presented them with an official-looking document, showing the computers are jammed with an encryption that freezes files. The, er, kidnappers are demanding 24 Bitcoin, a type of digital currency that is, of course, encrypted and untrackable. 
TRENTON - Dare us say credit rating companies are the unsung heroes who actually cut though the muck in Trenton and make some sense of it. And that's why we look at what S&P Global Ratings thinks of the proposed $35.5 billion state budget. No surprise the credit folks think taxpayers will feel a pinch, as towns are getting just $1.7 million in aid, or 0.11 percent, more than in the current budget. Meanwhile, more than $670 million in "new" state money is getting thrown toward pension and benefit payments, nearly $500 million for teachers alone. But only $16.1 million in new direct aid for schools, which, overall, is a drip. Translation: Mr. and Mrs. Taxpayer fill the gap.  

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TRENTON - While Donald J. Trump believes his performance as President is nothing short of unbelievably magnificent, Gov. Chris Christie has more modest thoughts of the first 100 days. "Listen, I'd give him a 'B,'" Christie told CNN, calling Trump's appointment of Neil Gorsuch to the U.S. Supreme Court the big accomplishment. Also, Christie says his Presidential pal has been good with the executive orders, lifting regulations, moves that have helped businesses in New Jersey. Failures, of course, are someone else's fault, with the governor slamming the Presidential staff, saying they "have to get their act together."

JAMESBURG - The "Person of the Day" in New Jersey is officially Mikayla Raji, 8. She is the girl who asked her mom to pick up the tab for a Jamesburg police officer who stopped in a Helmetta eatery on Friday for a bite. Jamesburg cops, caught up in the generosity, soon discovered Mikayla is the daughter of Thomas Raji, a Perth Amboy police officer killed by a drunk driver in August 2008. He was the first police officer in Perth Amboy history to be killed in the line of duty, NJ.com reports. Mikayla never met her dad, but now the Jamesburg police are firmly with her. They started a GoFundMe campaign for her education, starting off with $375. 


VIENNA - Revenge is sweet for a local bartender, who has finally seen some justice in his case against the town. It has been nearly a year since the bartender loudly burped in earshot of a cop, who then ticketed him for violating "public decency." The bartender appealed, saying he meant no offense after eating a kebab. The now-infamous belch, he argued, was not an intentional affront to the officer, who just happened to be standing nearby. Groups have rushed in support of the belcher and a kebab restaurant even paid the fine, equivalent to $75. 


IN PRINT - What the hell is going on? That's what Politico wants to know, as it seems Democrats are cursing like crazy in the media. In just one New York Magazine article, Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) included one "fuck," two "fucking"s, one "bullshit," one "pissed off," and one "they suck." DNC Chairman Tom Perez says "If you don't have the trust of the community, then you ain't got shit," telling a New Jersey Working Families Alliance event in March that Republicans "don't give a shit about people." Last week, Democrats.org started selling "Democrats give a sh*t about people" shirts. Perhaps it's an effort to connect with constituents; one poll revealed 25 percent of adults admit to saying "fuck" at least once a day, up from 15 percent a decade ago. Damn.

Happy Birthday to the late Edward R. Murrow, born in 1908.  

"We must not confuse dissent with disloyalty. When the loyal opposition dies, I think the soul of America dies with it." 


It was a sad day in the arts, on this day in 1984, when the band "Wings" broke up.


Dalmatic - [(dal-MAT-ik] - noun 

Definition: A loose, wide-sleeved outer garment worn by some monarchs at their coronations and by deacons, bishops, etc. in some churches.  

Example: Ever see Edward R. Murrow wear a dalmatic?