Like Family Guy? Now It's An MMO

I remember a time when Family Guy and The Simpsons fought for my attention but that time has long since passed as both series lost a lot of their luster. But Family Guy finally has something to hang over The Simpsons: an MMO.

Roadhouse Interactive, a developer reminiscent of Family Guy’s own Roadhouse joke, has just opened the gates to the beta for their free-to-play, browser-based MMO. Being an MMO, it’s not like everyone will be playing as Peter. Instead, you’ll make your own Quahogian and will complete quests while interacting with the world of Family Guy. Any chance to explore a popular series’ established environment is a fun thing as I remember with The Simpsons: Hit & Run. And just like The Simpsons: Hit & Run, writers from the show will be onboard to provide the show’s humor through dialogue and quests.

Right now, I’m imagining a quest like, catch the greased up deaf guy. The reward will be a Peanut Butter Jelly Guy costume.

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The Wisconsin State Journal (Madison, WI) September 18, 1996 Sen. Herb Kohl today is scheduled to introduce legislation designed to increase the availability of quality child care in Wisconsin and across the country.

The Wisconsin Democrat’s proposal comes just as the Congress is preparing to adjourn for the year and leave Washington, so its timing is less than ideal. But in another sense, its timing is nearly perfect.

The welfare reform bill approved by Congress in July and signed by President Clinton last month will force thousands of mothers of young children into the work force, and they will need daycare for their kids.

That will put additional pressure on the nation’s network of child-care providers, which advocates for working parents and children say already is inadequate to the task.

Kohl Kohl’s bill seeks to alleviate that coming crunch by offering businesses a tax subsidy if they agree to provide daycare facilities for their employees’ children at or near the company’s place of business.

In turn, that could be a boon for parents who dislike having to drop their children at a child-care facility inconvenient to their homes or their workplaces.

“It starts with the premise that we have a need for quality child care facilities in our state and our country,” Kohl said.

“Both parents are now working (in most families), as are 70 percent of women with a child under 6.” In addition, Kohl said companies offering such an option would have an advantage in attracting high-quality talent, “because employees would be overjoyed to have their children being taken care of at their place of employment where they can look in on them and be satisfied that the quality of child care is high.” There’s little doubt that that’s the case, but Kohl’s proposal also would provide incentives for companies to offer child care up to a mile away, the senator said. see here kohls coupons printable

Having one’s child a mile away presumably would be less appealing to a parent than an offer to have a child in the same building.

But either way, Kohl’s bill, if enacted, would likely bring more companies into the child-care business.

The legislation also encourages small companies to pool their resources with other small firms nearby and create child-care facilities together.

Businesses that agree to provide or subsidize daycare on-site or nearby would gain a tax credit equal to 50 percent of the cost of providing the service.

That, Kohl believes, would be a sufficient incentive for companies to get into the child-care business. kohls coupons printable

It also would cost the government some money, but the exact figure has not been determined.

Kohl’s staff estimates that it would cost in the range of $1 billion a year, but the senator says that could be offset either by eliminating other corporate tax preferences or by reducing spending on military hardware Kohl believes is unnecessary, such as the B-2 bomber.

“We have 20 in our arsenal,” Kohl said. “The bomber was developed to evade Soviet radar. What do we need any more of those for? Each one costs $2 billion.” Because the bill is being introduced just as Congress is heading for the campaign trail, the legislation will not go anywhere this year. Kohl plans to re-introduce it when Congress re-convenes in January, and he expects support from Democrats and Republicans alike.

But he has chosen to offer it now, spokeswoman Lynn Becker said, to let people know it’s a priority, and to allow other senators and their staffs to begin thinking about the proposal’s merits and flaws.

“This is clearly not something that should get the ire of one party or the other up,” he said, although he acknowledged that a dispute will probably arise when the time comes to cut other spending or tax subsidies to finance it.

Indeed, Rep. Scott Klug, R-Wis., expressed support for the concept, but he wanted to withhold an endorsement until he sees how the costs associated with the plan are absorbed.

“He’s generally supportive,” said Klug spokeswoman Pam Arruda. “It’s more creative, more innovative than a government-run program. But he has questions on how it’s paid for.” Nevertheless, Kohl and Klug should be able to find common cause in that regard. Both have expressed interest throughout their years in Congress in reducing spending on defense and for corporate subsidies.

Child-care advocates like the proposal. Diane Adams, a Madison consultant and director of the Wisconsin Child Care Resource and Referral Network, said the legislation is “a good step forward.” Adams, who has been encouraging employers for 20 years to provide child care for their employees, agreed with Kohl that businesses — as well as employees — would benefit.

She said it would increase employee loyalty and reduce turnover, a major cost burden for many businesses.

“This is probably a very workable idea,” Adams said.

However, a spokeswoman for the National Federation of Independent Business, which represents the nation’s smallest employers, cautioned that most of the group’s members still would be unable to provide day care, even with a tax credit.

“We represent very small businesses, and most of them don’t even make much of a profit,” said spokeswoman Kristin Hogarth.

“Small business owners would love to provide child-care facilities for their employees, but the money is just not there.”