I do know that it's true that if you wanted to reduce crime, you could -- if that were your sole purpose, you could abort every black baby in this country, and your crime rate would go down.(From Media Matters) Well, the best you can say about the guy is that he didn't couch it in "code words" or anything.|W|P|112795566539115925|W|P|What's That They Say About a Gaffe?|W|Pemail@example.com
RDI, or Response Dynamics Inc., is the biggest scandal in the history of the College Republicans. More precisely, it is a direct-mail firm that brought the College Republicans approximately $9 million last year. Most of that money went straight back to RDI, which claimed $8.2 million to cover expenses and their fees, according to the Los Angeles Times.So, it seems that the CRNC is merely a money laundering operation for this firm, RDI. But that's not all. Apparently, the CRNC's relationship with RDI is important enough that members of the Republican establishment, including congressmen, involve themselves in elections so as to make sure that the arrangement continues. Candidates that were on the wrong side of an election, according to the article, can find themselves on the outs in the Republican party for years afterward. This all can lead to really intense elections. If you wonder where people like Karl Rove and Jack Abramoff cut their teeth, it was in the rough and tumble of CRNC politics. This election was rife with allegations of homosexuality, smear blogs (CR Veterans for Truth, not making that up), false populism, parliamentary tricks and vote rigging. Okay, YDA can get pretty down and dirty. At my first convention, a group of folks tried to claim that they were the Young Democrats of American Samoa. Our credentialing rules were so loose at the time, that I think they may have gotten away with it. But, for the most part, things have been relatively clean. Yes, it's hardball, but still clean. Part of this may be because many people in the DNC wanted to steer clear of the YDA. The organization was in a shambles (and sometimes a joke) for years and only recently has gotten back on its legs. The problems stemed from a meeting in Phoenix in 1987. Trouble in the YDA usually starts with Arizona. There is a YDA "establishment" too, and as long as I've been around, they can pretty much elect who they need to elect. And yes, the losers are largely excluded from YDA. However, they can still advance in the party. In fact, it seems sometimes they get further when they don't have to play games in the YDA. On that note, State Representative Erik Fleming is running for Senator Trent Lott's seat in Mississippi. Fleming was defeated for YDA president in 1995, but threw himself into state politics, elected only a few years after losing. Erik is a fine individual, and I was happy to support him way back when, and he'll make a fine United States Senator. NB - My bro complained that I had too many pictures of Republicans. I hope the picture of Erik Fleming makes up for it a bit. By the way, some Republican posted an anonymous comment on here. I think he was trying to imply that I was some sort of smokehead. He made the comment anonymously though, so unless he's got the cojones to give his name, he really doesn't deserve a response.|W|P|112778971559796316|W|P|Another Update|W|Pfirstname.lastname@example.org
...College Republicans had understood this game for years. They had heard many such stories from the children of elderly men and women who receive boxes full of these letters. And many chairmen of the organization sought to break the relationship with RDI. "Everyone called it heroin," says [Jennifer] Holder. The CRs sincerely tried to kick their addiction, but they simply couldn't.
Doesn't sound like it's serious speculation to me. An interesting phrase there is "If I remember Sandra correctly..." Does this mean that Johnson hasn't talked to her lately? It really wouldn't suprise me to find out that a Republican legislator doesn't bother to talk often to the local officials that have to implement their hare-brained schemes, even when they are of their own party and county. I also find it interesting that Johnson touts Dowling's educational credentials, something that Johnson routinely ignores and belittles when it suits her legislative aims. Even if this is serious speculation, Dowling is probably not going to be a strong candidate. It's a funny thing, really. For a county official to run for governor, they need a pretty strong base. The only county to really have that right now is Maricopa. This is precisely the county where officials have very little visibility (Joe Arpaio and Andrew Peyton Thomas aside, but look what they have to do to get attention) because so many of their normal responsibilities are handled by the cities. We have had, in recent history, Maricopa county officials that have attempted to run for statewide office, thinking the population advantage would propel them to victory. Anyone remember Fred Koury? Yeah, no one else does either. He was a Maricopa County supervisor who got all the conservatives in Phoenix fired up. He got demolished in the primary by Fife Symington, who had as many years in elective office as Koury's housecat. The County School Superintendent's office is very low key. Here in Pima County, for example, even educators would be hard pressed to tell you who Linda Arzoumanian is and what her job actually is. And in Pima County, the county officials tend to be much higher profile locally than county officials are in Phoenix, so imagine how hard it could be for Dowling to break out of the pack. What is interesting is that even with one candidate with a famous name (Don Goldwater) and another with a strong legislative background (John Greene), yet another waiting in the wings (Ken Bennett), that they are still flailing around to find someone, anyone, who could put a dent in Janet Napolitano's armor. Keep looking around, boys and girls. NB - SurveyUSA has a list of the "Approval/Disapproval" ratings of all 50 governors. Napolitano is at a comfortable +24%.|W|P|112733452628751234|W|P|Sandra Dowling for Governor?|W|Pemail@example.com
Just thought you would enjoy hearing about another name being bantered around for Governor – our own Maricopa County School Superintendent, Sandra Dowling. Now that would be a race! If I remember Sandra correctly, she is a bulldog and would give Janet quit [sic] a time of it – with all of Sandra’s credentials in Education, she might take the stage – front and center – from the Governor.
At least one of those good bills was vetoed without so much as a reading by her.Aww, pobrecita! I would feel sympathy, if the legistlators themselves read the bills more often. The Republican leadership and their lobbyist buddies rush through so many bills that they don't get a proper reading and hearing (anyone remember Alt-Fuels?). Heck, how many of Gorman's colleagues read her bill before they passed it? Probably very few, and Gorman counted on that. Here's another complaint about a call for a special session (same entry):
Why on earth would we want to come back, upheaving work schedules and family commitments, only to create more good bills that she will then veto?Yeah, it's a tough drive from Anthem to the legislature*, a good fourty minutes or so. What about Democrats like Albert Tom or Manny Alvarez who have to drive from all sorts of far flung places in this state only to have the majority try to totally shut them out: not hearing their bills and even trying to not let them have their say? Yeah, no sympathy there. Maybe if your collegues would treat the Democrats as more than a distracting way to keep a quorum, you would get a bill that the Governor wouldn't have to veto, eh? Gorman and her colleagues don't seem to understand that a Democratic governor got elected, and they can't just click her heels and wish she'd go away. It all sounds like so much whining. Sort of like what they accuse us of. Anyway, enough complaining about all that. I got the basics on the Gorman's fundraising and consulting from this Sunday's Political Insider column in the Republic. I included a picture of her because she's nice to look at, but still "ideologically impared." * I decided not to make any comments here about the irritating habit of people moving to stucco exurbs like Anthem to get away from the city, then complaining about how far they are from city services.|W|P|112731183651070451|W|P|Pamela Gorman Fundraiser|W|Pfirstname.lastname@example.org
With the Bush Administration's approval, [Pat] Robertson's $66 million relief organization, Operation Blessing, has been prominently featured on FEMA's list of charitable groups accepting donations for hurricane relief.I'm not one of these lefties that go into caniptions every time a religious group or another gets involved in anything. As a matter of fact, I don't consider Robertson a religious figure, he seems to be more like a well-connected Republican buisnessman. A cynical and corrupt one at that. Robertson's organization has been under investigation from Virginia officials when money that was supposed to go to helping refugees in Rwanda went instead to aiding Robertson's mining operations in Zaire. People were getting massacred, and Robertson used that to help himself make money. Truly, truly sick. This "charity" is also under fire for misdirecting funds to help promote some sort of protein shake that is sold at GNC. One of Robertson's other organizations, the Christian Coalition, was successfully sued by black employees over the sorts of discrimination we thought was over fourty years ago. Why is this guy allowed to opperate with a Federal blessing, but FEMA is blocking the Red Cross and even Wal-Mart from the area so they can help? By the way, I'm hearing now that Tom DeLay pal Joe Allbaugh and Texas Governor Rick Perry are trying to cash in now too.|W|P|112618762686368240|W|P|...And They Insist on Making Me Sick|W|Pemail@example.com
Everyone is so overwhelmed by the hospitality. And so many of the people in the arena here, you know, were underprivileged anyway, so this, this is working very well for them.She said this, and then giggled. Giggled. I realize that the media loves her, since she "tells it like it is" or some such nonsense. Personally, I've seen that her comments have a tinge of elitism; her insults are most often directed at people outside of her old line Brahmin class. Anyone remember her rude comments directed at Geraldine Ferraro? You can listen to the audio, if you want. David Corn has some excellent commentary on this. Second thing that made my blood boil: firefighters that have been sent to volunteer have been instead tasked with public relations duties. For God's sake, what the hell is wrong with these people? I suppose this is what happens if you put some second rate political hack in charge of FEMA. A team of 50 firefighters was assembled and deployed...to accompany George Bush on a photo-op. We wonder why people are so cynical about politicians. Somebody out there, give me a sliver of hope.|W|P|112607524661780125|W|P|Let Them Eat Astrodome Stadium Dogs|W|Pfirstname.lastname@example.org
I'm afraid they leave me no choice . . . - I'm going to have to invade Harding University, kill its leaders, and then convert them to Christianity.That Ann is a comedy genius. Hannity picked the item up from WorldNetDaily, a conservative news site (no word on whether they employ prostitutes.) I went to the site to see what they had to say, they only reprinted a wire story. But I did find an item about a football player named Myron Rolle. In the article, they author talks about how many of his fellow students went the "Ivy league route," but Rolle decided on Florida State University. So what went into the thought process? "God came first" So, God told him to go to FSU? Many of the Ivies don't offer athletic scholarships, so I think we all could have appreciated the answer of "FSU offered to let me play football and pay me for it." I think that over the last week, God has some bigger things to worry about. Given recent scandals, I don't think that God has much to do with big time college athletics these days. I wonder about the mention of the Ivy league: is the author trying to say that God doesn't like Harvard or Yale? One of the aspects of football that has always bugged me is this sort of showy false piety that is associated with it. It even bugged Reggie White toward the end of his life. When one team says that God helped them win, it implies that somehow the other team is less worthy, further from God. It demeans the faith of others, and it trivializes God.|W|P|112567955178961030|W|P|More on Coulter and the Arizona Daily Star|W|Pemail@example.com
JEFFREY BROWN: In the immediate term the impact on most citizens will be at the gas pump?
RED CAVANEY: Yes. They will see more opportunity for supply with this kind of flexibility than we would have otherwise had.
As much as I hate the waivers, if they are temporary, maybe they can be justified. But, I wonder how quickly consumers will see the "benefits" of this. By the way, Cavaney admits that they wanted the waivers even before the hurricane. I always wonder why prices go up quickly in this situation, but it takes forever for them to go back down. Brown wonders about this too:
So, in other words, the price increases are not the industry's fault, and our dealers are only increasing prices because they want to help people. Geez. I have to give Cavaney some credit though. He didn't as crass as some oil types are. Of course, that is faint praise. At the very least, he hid his glee at being able to work under relaxed regulations with higher prices. It can at least be argued that Cavaney is arguing a public policy angle. Others, however, have taken this as an opporitunity to take shots at people that are not even envolved in this whole thing. Jonah Goldberg, for example, decided that it was a good time to take a pot shot at Nation editor Katrina vanden Heuvel. He has also decided that this is the time to blame the environmentalists, particularly the "deep ecologists" and wiccans. Yeah, because wiccans run everything, especially the rescue agencies. I have to give him a bit of credit though. In The National Review Online's Corner he has a response to liberal critics (like me) who are questioning whether money that could have gone to FEMA and the Corps of Engineers went to Iraq instead. He says that instead, we should look at other wasted money. I don't agree with him, but at least he's a conservative that admits that money is actually limited:
JEFFREY BROWN: And why does it hit so quickly? People wonder how that works -- why is it overnight that prices rise so high?
RED CAVANEY: Well, what happens is there are about 160,000 retail outlets where the consumer actually buys their gasoline and diesel. About a little less than 10 percent are owned and operated by the industry itself, the refiners and the people that produce it. The rest are small businessmen and women, small companies that they own those things and it's very competitive marketplace because I don't think there's any other industry that actually posts its price for everybody to see every time they go by. And so what you see is the dynamic move of people trying to decide that I want to steal some customers away from my competitors. I'm going to lower my price by 2 cents or somebody else saying, look, I think I can make more money by holding my price with fewer customers. And so those are the kinds of decisions that ultimately drive the market.
JEFFREY BROWN: Right now people are seeing it go up though.
RED CAVANEY: People are seeing it because the problem with a commodity is if that's the product you're giving to consumers, you don't want to be caught without it, so you'll pay almost anything to get that last truckload to be able to take care of your customers.
The choice should be between the highway bill, ag subsidies and the like. The Don Young Highway should at least be renamed to the "Go Suck Eggs New Orleans Highway."I hate to give the guy props for anything, but there's some truth there. Also, our man Rush Limbaugh is blaming the victims for their own plight. His argument, if you actually want to read it, is that liberals are wrong to say this is about race and class, but conservatives are right to say it is about race and class. Understand? Keith Olbermann also quoted Limbaugh on his program as saying that it is their own fault for living there, I couldn't find the quote online. Well, Limbaugh never claimed to be a compassionate conservative. A couple of my own pot shots: wouldn't it be nice if the Louisiana National Guard wasn't tied up elsewhere? Or...too bad that these folks no longer have a good way to declare bankruptcy when the creditors come around.|W|P|112566824133411956|W|P|Hurricane Reaction|W|Pfirstname.lastname@example.org