I grew up reading comic books wanting to be a superhero. Comics taught me that those who speak the truth are heroes, all the rest are liars.

Friday, December 30, 2005

Pawlenty Drops The Puck

Team USA played the Canadian Team at the Excel Center tonight. MN Governor Pawlenty came out before the game for a ceremonial dropping of the puck. Instead of being met by 'Minnesota Nice', Pawlenty got 'Minnesota Ice'!

The very lukewarm applause for him was drowned out by spontaneously loud booing and hissing when he was announced. It seems hockey girls (and their moms) don't much care for our current Governor.

This is the second slap shot in two weeks for Governor Pawlenty. Check out Minnesota Blue where Pawlenty gets failing grades at school by a similar chilly reception.

In hockey terms it looks like Pawlenty is in the penalty box and close to being ejected from the game...er..Governor's office?

Thursday, December 29, 2005

Selling Your Democratic Soul

Since mnsky's posting on Democratic Cannibals , earlier today,
I actually went to Blois Olson's New School Communication's website and found this screenshot.

It says at the New School's website
'Winning is Everything'. Their website says "We make winning for our clients our only priority. Sometimes the old way needs New Thinking, New Ideas, and New Attitudes."
I would offer up that those of us that are really New School as in progressive...believe 'Winning is Important' but not if you sell your soul along with other Democrats and Democratic values. Hopefully MDE is just loudly bellowing hot air because if not...New School (as in Blois Olson) cheated...and that's more like old school.

Bu$h's Spying Violates FISA

The New York Times had a full page ad from the ACLU calling for a special counsel to investigate Bush and the NSA warrantless electronic surveillance. President Bush has acknowledged giving explicit and secret authorization for warrantless electronic eavesdropping and physical searches by the National Security Administration.

The actions of the president, the FBI and the JTTFs are part of a broad pattern of disregard for the rule of law in the name of national security.

According to the ACLU press release, President Bush's actions are a clear violation of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA).
"President Nixon was not above the law and neither is President Bush," said ACLU Executive Director Anthony D. Romero.

"President Bush cannot use a claim of seeking to preserve our nation to undermine the rules that serve as our foundation. The Attorney General, who may have been involved with the formulation of this policy, must appoint a special counsel to let justice be served."

ACLU Letter Calling for Special Counsel
ACLU Requests Agency Records
FOIA Request to the National Security Agency
FOIA Request to the Department of Justice
FOIA Request to the Central Intelligence Agency
Learn More About Government Spying

ACLU Calls for Special Counsel: Add Your Voice

MN Democratic Cannibals

Why must we eat our own?
Linking to MDE is like sucking on mud... but...
he’s got a story on Politics in Minnesota co-publisher Blois Olson that shouldn't be ignored…

I don’t know who I’m more pissed at, Blois Olson for trying to hoist his own petard at Coleen Rowley’s campaign expense and ultimately all Minnesotan Democrats, or the anonymous source that took the story to a rethug blog instead of any one of the fine left leaning MN blogs. Either way, Blois and anonymous source have some serious explaining to do.
Oh yeah...read my lips...Democrats need to stop eating their own!

From MDE:
Later today I will have a post defending Coleen Rowley's campaign. I am not drunk, nor is a gun pointed at my head.

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

My New Years Resolutions

Well it's the dawn of a new year, and time to make resolutions. Maybe this year I'll even keep a few of them. I like making resolutions because they're a great way for me to feel like I'm becoming a better person, without having to do anything to actually be a better person. So, in no particular order, here they are:

* When calling the White House comment line at 202-456-1111, I resolve to make my comments more constructive; as I know that our preznit listens to and values my opinion. That time I called claiming that I was changing my name from George Bush to something less offensive like Jeffrey Dahmer, because he'd killed fewer people? That was just mean.

* When calling Norm Coleman's office at 202-224-5641, I resolve to stop calling him a Big Republican Rubber Stamp. The proper term is The Honorable Big Republican Rubber Stamp.

* If I really must call the Republican National Committee at 202.863.8500, I resolve to stop asking whether GOP stands for Get Out of Power or Go Off to Prison.

* When calling John Kline's campaign office at 952-890-9430 and asking for literature, I resolve to actually use my real name, rather than Arnold Ziffel, the pig from Green Acres, like I did last year.

* If I ever call Mark Kennedy's campaign office at 651.644.2506, I resolve not to ask if he's a robot low on batteries or a deer trapped in the headlights. That could be The Honorable Big Republican Rubber Stamp II we're talking about, and it's important to make a good first impression. It's also impolite to ask why even people who have never held political office are beating him in the polls.

Well that's it. If you have any New Years Resolutions you'd like to share, please feel free to add them below.

The MN Times Are A-Changin'

Minnesota DFL candidates won two elections by picking up a state Senate seat and retaining a state House seat!
Come gather 'round people
Wherever you roam
And admit that the waters
Around you have grown
And accept it that soon
You'll be drenched to the bone.
If your time to you
Is worth savin'
Then you better start swimmin'
Or you'll sink like a stone
For the times they are a-changin'
Two great wins for the voters in St. Cloud! Senate-elect DFLer Tarryl Clark soundly defeated Republican local personality Dan “the Ox” Ochsner in SD15 by 2,000 plus votes (55%). And, DFLer Representative-elect Larry Haws scored an overwhelming victory (70%) over Republican write-in challenger Kay Ek in HD15B.
Come writers and critics
Who prophesize with your pen
And keep your eyes wide
The chance won't come again
And don't speak too soon
For the wheel's still in spin
And there's no tellin' who
That it's namin'.
For the loser now
Will be later to win
For the times they are a-changin'
The Democratic Party is the party that fights for working families, not special interests. Throughout its history, the Democratic Party has been a leader in advancing the goals of this nation. Some examples of this are: Social Security and Medicare, Family & Medical Leave, Federal Aid for Education, The New Deal. Women's Suffrage, Minimum Wage Acts, The Voting Rights Act, The Civil Rights Act, Environmental Protection. All values that are also Minnesotan values! Our wins in St. Cloud weren't just by chance but clear indications that Minnesotan are tired of partisan game playing such as Pawlenty declaring this special election just two days after Christmas.
Come senators, congressmen
Please heed the call
Don't stand in the doorway
Don't block up the hall
For he that gets hurt
Will be he who has stalled
There's a battle outside
And it is ragin'.
It'll soon shake your windows
And rattle your walls
For the times they are a-changin'
As DFL Chair Brian Melendez says:
"The policies of the governor and the Republican Party are not resonating with Minnesotans. People are tired of Republicans playing games with the budget and driving a wedge through this state. We will keep talking about the issues that are most important to Minnesotans: education, health care, jobs, and transportation.”
Come mothers and fathers
Throughout the land
And don't criticize
What you can't understand
Your sons and your daughters
Are beyond your command
Your old road is
Rapidly agin'.
Please get out of the new one
If you can't lend your hand
For the times they are a-changin'
With the exception of Abraham Lincoln and Theodore Roosevelt, every single progressive piece of legislation enacted into law has been a result of the Democratic Party. This means that the more Democrats we elect to local, state and national level office, the greater the chance of moving this nation forward. So as we prepare to move into the next millenium we must have progressive leaders that will fight for working families. This is the core of what the Democratic Party & Democratic candidates represent. This is why Minnesotans yesterday voted for DFL candidates and why by electing DFL candidates the great state of Minnesota also wins.
The line it is drawn
The curse it is cast
The slow one now
Will later be fast
As the present now
Will later be past
The order is
Rapidly fadin'.
And the first one now
Will later be last
For the times they are a-changin'

Isaac Vells on them there 'libruls'

My un-imaginary friend Isaac is at it again...this time he's velling on 'libruls' ruining the holidays:

Onward Christian Soldiers
Well, Christmas has passed, so that must mean the librul War On Christmas (tm) is over now too. For now anyway.

See, those godless libruls just can't pass up any chance to persecute the helpless people in this country that call themselves Christians.

Polls show that upwards of 80% or so of people in the US profess to be Christians. Do you see what that means?

It means that 20%--probably less--of this country's population has cleverly orchestrated a massive conspiracy to hold the vast majority of this country hostage. Christians just can't get a break in this country any more, and are at the mercy of the liberals, who run everything now.

Librul atheists just aren't happy unless they're trying to keep people from worshiping God in the schools, force everyone to have abortions, marry a homosexual, view pornography, and (horrors!) treat women and black people like they really were people.

It doesn't stop there.

With atheist's threats of boycotts and intolerance, it's a wonder that shows like Touched By An Angel, Highway to Heaven, Joan of Arcadia, Little House on the Prairie, The Waltons, Providence, Dr. Quinn Medicine Woman, The Brady Bunch, Shining Time Station, Davey and Goliath, Adventures From the Book of Virtues, ABC After School Specials, manage to even get on the air to go up against the Simpsons and balance out the blatant homosexuality of the TeleTubbies and SpongeBob Squarepants and all those other atheist programs.

Sunday morning television and atheist cable networks have got so sinful, there's only Pat Robertson and the 700 Club, D James Kennedy, Robert Schuller, Jerry Falwell, Oral Roberts, Robert Tilton, Jimmy Swaggart, Creflo A. Dollar, Benny Hinn, Marilyn Hickey, Peter Popoff, William Branham, Carl Baugh, John Ankerberg, Garner Ted Armstrong, Kenneth Copeland, Paul and Jan Crouch, James Robison, Trinity Broadcasting, CBN, Jack Van Impe, Frederick Price, Ron Phillips, Rod Parsley, Joyce
Meyer, Hal Lindsey, Zola Levitt, Bob Larson, T.J. Jakes, Jack Hayford, John Hagee, and Mother Angelica and a few hundred others on the tube these days, since the atheists ran them off.

AM radio has got so godless, you can only find Beverly LaHaye on about 600 stations around the country. Her husband Tim, author of the Left Behind series of books and merchandise dealing with the Rapture, have only managed to eke out an anemic estimated $1 billion in sales.

And don't even get me started about all those liberals and atheists in the US government and the ACLU.

So what's left for the heathen hordes to ruin for everybody?

Christmas. The most important holiday of the year to real Christians.

Just forget for the moment that there is little to no actual direct evidence that there really was a Jesus. Forget that, even if there was a Jesus, he was probably born early in the fall rather than on December 25. Forget that there is literally no archeological or contemporary historical evidence that there was a Jesus. Forget that much or most of the Bible appears to have been lifted from earlier religions and Christians rituals and observances were copied straight from the Pagans.

Just forget about all that: Christmas is a holy day, and being religion, that's all the proof it needs. If enough people believe a thing, that means it's true.

Retailers were so scared of the atheists they had to stop telling shoppers "Merry Christmas." The holiness of Christ's birth was defiled because retailers had to say "Happy Holidays" when they were selling X-Boxes to soccer moms. And when salespeople had to say "Season's Greetings," the significance of the Holiest of Holy Days was completely ruined for people shopping for IPods.

But Christians did manage a few defenders of both the faith and the holiday.

Bill O'Reilly selflessly offered himself up as a sacrifice to the hazards of the ungodly liberal hordes, and used his (sadly overlooked) little cable TV program to alert us all to the danger. When O'Reilly loudly protested the liberal conspiracy to force people to stop saying "Merry Christmas," the forces of darkness tried to change the subject and direct people to O'Reilly's web-site, which offered "holiday gifts," which they claimed showed him to be a hypocrite who made up the whole issue for ratings and money and to stir up tension.

To prove he wasn't a hypocrite, O'Reilly quickly eliminated that objection by changing his web-site.

But the damage had already been done. Liberals had somehow infiltrated the White House and managed to hijack George and Laura Bush's Christmas card list. The Bushes found themselves in the embarrassing position of having sent out thousands of Christmas cards with the dreaded, atheist, politically correct "Happy Holidays."

The liberal plot against Christmas was exposed in detail with Fox News "personality" John Gibson's book "The War on Christmas." When the liberal Rob Boston of the anti-American group American United for Separation of Church and State claimed on Gibson's program that Gibson had made it all up, Gibson cleverly and effectively exposed the weakness of Boston's criticisms by yelling loudly and talking over him so no one could hear what Boston was saying.

But the defenders of all that is good and right are a lonely bunch in the media.

Michael Moore and Molly Ivins have such a stranglehold on the media that, Bill O'Reilly, Rush Limbaugh, Brit Hume, John Gibson, Ann Coulter, Sean Hannity, Michael Savage, Laura Ingraham, Thomas Sowell, Michelle Malkin, Cal Thomas, Pat Buchanan, John Stossel, John Mclaughlin, George Will, Lucianne Goldberg, Bob Grant, Oliver North, Gordon Liddy, Ken Hamblin, Armstrong Williams, Michael Reagan, Laura Schlessinger, Joe Scarborough, Tony Snow, Mara Liasson, Chris Matthews, Dennis Miller, Michael Medved, Cokie Roberts, John Hockenberry, Robert Novak, Tucker
Carlson, Paul Weyrich, Andrea Mitchell, Brian Williams, Wolf Blitzer, Bill Schneider, Candy Crowley, Peggy Noonan, Bernard Goldberg, Matt Drudge, and Howard Kurtz just can't get a word in edgewise to speak for the other side.

If it were up to the librul media, you wouldn't even know there was another side. We all know the librul media did everything in iys power to cover up how evil Bill Clinton was. Remember how hard it was to find anybody willing to talk about how he and Hillary murdered Vince Foster just to laugh at him while died and how Bill was raping interns? And remember, you heard it here first: patriots in the legislature stood up to the liberals and barely managed to call an impeachment inquiry. But it failed because the librul media did everything in its power to cover it up.

And now the beleaguered Christians have once again used their meager resources and stood up, against all odds, David vs. Goliath, to the heathens that want to take out the "Christ" from Christmas and just leave it with the rancid commercialization that otherwise defines the season.

Thank goodness we all still have Santa, the reindeer, and all the elves at the North Pole, and the Grinch Who Stole Christmas to remind us how dearly we hold the birth of the baby Jesus at Christmastime.

So another Christmas came and went with no problem, no thanks to the godless atheist liberals. Until next year, that is.

Or Easter.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Amen, Pass the Olive Oil

Quote of the Day
"Let the student decide."
-- Sen. John McCain (R-AZ), quoted by the Arizona Daily Star, summing up his view on the teaching of "intelligent design" along with evolution in public schools.

You know school's have come a long way since I've been enrolled. Use to be you'd have to learn what was taught, not decide what was taught. What's the point?

Being a pastafarian, I choose door number...er...lesson number 3.

Sock It To Me!

What do you call a political party that thinks postage for a Presidential cat's fan club requires a full-on Congressional investigation, but a President who admits on national television to breaking Federal law, repeatedly, merits some committee "oversight," and spotty oversight at that?

Like Firedoglake's Jane Hamsher I had also forgotten the Clinton era "Socks-gate." Naturally, like all the Clinton related 'gates', the claim was without merit.

Hmmmm...let's see: misrepresent intelligence to Congress and the American public to get us into the Iraq war; out a CIA NOC for political payback; misrepresent war costs once we are there, so that Congress has to continually appropriate millions billions; spy on the American public without warrants, violating the Fourth Amendment and the Presidential requirements of Article II of the Constitution requiring the President to faithfully follow all laws and the FISA laws as established by Congress; and...well, there's more, but we all know that.

Clearly that cat fanclub thing was way more important than actual, publicly admitted lawbreaking.
The President has seized power through legal machinations, but it was not his for the taking -- and his breach of his oath of office to uphold the Constitution and the laws of the United States should no go unpunished. No matter what his intentions, breaking the law is a serious matter -- for the ordinary citizen and for the President. The law makes no distinction, and neither should any of the rest of us.

FISA & NSA: Coleen Rowley sounds off....

Thank you Coleen for a clear concise summary regarding FISA and NSA in addition to clarifying those pundits who are using the Moussaoui case to justify Bu$h's lawlessness...

Saturday, December 24, 2005; Page A15 in WashingtonPost.com
This LTE,
A Zeal to Defend Secrecy
In their zeal to defend President Bush for ordering the National Security Agency to eavesdrop on communications of American citizens, William Kristol and Gary Schmitt got key things wrong regarding the FBI's terrorism investigation of Zacarias Moussaoui ["Vital Presidential Power," op-ed, Dec. 20]...

...That means the FISA procedures were not the reason the FBI failed to inspect Moussaoui's computer files. Rather, the FBI's failure to share and analyze intelligence sufficiently is what enabled Moussaoui to escape further investigation.
This debate is carried over to Daily Kos...--

Saturday, December 24, 2005

A Soulful Holiday

The family decided to be 'soulful' this Holiday Season.
It was a good decision...something we may continue through the year...

Our souls will cast a beautiful bright light around the world so all may find their promise land.

I grew up listing to the music of James Brown, Otis Redding, Jr. Walker, Wilson Picket, Jackie Wilson, Sam Cook...and like the ghost of xmas past...it's time to revisit my roots if for no other reason that to assert my faith in soulful goodness. No matter how down trotten, how mistreated, how cheated, how looked down upon, how despied or how abused... your spirit can raise above. You can be soulful...

Go down to the river Jordan: I ask that all those I have offended, hurt, or wronged to forgive me for just as the Jordan has two banks on either side of where she runs, so too can hurt go both ways.

Minnesota is land of hot dishes and cold snow. While reminded of past seasons in other places, we now live in the sometimes unbearable icy present of here...and for an old hippie like me that means getting back to...the garden of soul. Feel free to join in...we'll be the house open to all, playing soul music and eating ribs, mixed greens, sweet potato pie, black peas and pecan delight. And we'll be discussing the past, dwelling in the future, but looking foward to the promised land.

Happy Holidays...may you find peace,love and the promised land.

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Poor - Poor - Pityful Ek(s)

When I saw the injustice of it ... it just hit me that someone had to do something about this," she (Kay Ek) said.
Someone should explain the difference between injustice and 'not getting your way because you violated the law' to Kay Ek. I guess the apple didn't fall far from the tree when it came to ethics?

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

I Spy A Slimey Lying President Bu$h

President Bu$h has continue to flaunt our constitution and U.S. laws to carry out his own personal agenda. First the lies of WMD, then the killing of civilians by the illegal use of chemicals, followed by the torture of prisoners, and now spying on US citizens within the United States. It's wrong, evil, against the law, against our constitution, against our values, and UnAmerican!
Bush’s SnoopgateThe president was so desperate to kill The New York Times’ eavesdropping story, he summoned the paper’s editor and publisher to the Oval Office. But it wasn’t just out of concern about national security.

The oath. "I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States."

The Lying "Now, by the way, any time you hear the United States government talking about wiretap, it requires -- a wiretap requires a court order. Nothing has changed, by the way. When we're talking about chasing down terrorists, we're talking about getting a court order before we do so. It's important for our fellow citizens to understand, when you think Patriot Act, constitutional guarantees are in place when it comes to doing what is necessary to protect our homeland, because we value the Constitution."

The Coverup Saying that Sept. 11 "changed everything," McCain told ABC's "This Week": "The president, I think, has the right to do this."

"We all know that since Sept. 11 we have new challenges with enemies that exist within the United States of America - so the equation has changed."

The Impeachment Coming soon!

Speak Melendez To Me!

MN DFL Chair Brian Melendez nails it. Isn't it time the GOP grows up, starts playing by the rules (and laws) while looking out for Minnesotan interests?

ST. PAUL (12/20/05) – "The Republican Party must take responsibility for this Ek mess," said DFL State Chair Brian Melendez. "Trying to blame Attorney General Mike Hatch and the DFL Party is laughable. Republicans from the top down somehow believe that they are above the law—first by offering up a candidate who lied about living in the district, now by whining about having to follow the law about getting on the ballot. The Republican culture of corruption that is plaguing this state and the nation is intolerable.

"For the Republican Party to say that they want the voters to have a choice is hypocritical. The Republican governor set the special election for two days after Christmas to ensure low turnout. This date also disenfranchises more than 15,000 students at St. Cloud State University, as they are on winter break. And it was Secretary of State Mary Kiffmeyer, a Republican, who told county officials
that Kay Ek could not be on the ballot."

"For once, the Republican Party should admit its mistake and not blame others.

"DFL-endorsed candidate Larry Haws is an honest, deserving and straight-shooting 32-year public servant to the St. Cloud area, and he will represent the Granite City admirably at the State Capitol."

"I Broke the Law and the Law Won"

The Ek Family Saga has come to an end.
At least for the St. Cloud Special Election on January 27.

Note to self
- Give Ron Carey some candidate tips...the GOP (Get Out of Prision?!) seem to be scraping the barrel...I guess it's the best you can do when your President also breaks the law !

Ek- Out with the Old, In with the Older

Well now that St. Paul Sue Ek has been shot down by Minnesota Supreme Court in her bid for office in St. Cloud, enter a new GOP candidate...Kay EK...Mother to Sue. Wonder if Sue got her values from mom?

Ron Carey, MN GOP State Chair:

On Monday, Republican endorsed candidate Sue Ek was removed from the ballot by decision of the Minnesota Supreme Court. While we were disappointed with the decision and the DFL's partisan game-playing, we have moved quickly to ensure the voters of St. Cloud have a choice in the special election on December 27.

Republican Party activists in House District 15B and the Republican Party of Minnesota Executive Committee endorsed a replacement candidate and will run a write-in campaign for Kay Ek while also seeking to have her name placed on the ballot.

Guess Ron doesn't understand why someone who misrepresentated where they live should be removed from the ballot...perhaps he along with Sue need to go back to ethics 101!

Here's the no spin truth:
DFL Chair Brian Melendez says:
“Today the Supreme Court of Minnesota confirmed what the facts have already shown: Sue Ek doesn’t live in St. Cloud, and wasn’t telling the truth when she ran for elected office saying that she did.

“From day one, the Republicans have been playing political games with the people of St. Cloud. Gov. Pawlenty scheduled the special election two days after Christmas, which would ensure low voter turnout, and disfranchise the students of St. Cloud State University. Then the Republicans advanced a candidate who didn’t even live in the district. The Supreme Court wasn’t fooled. The voters won’t be fooled either.

“The voters have a clear choice in Larry Haws. Haws has proven himself with over 32 years of public service to the people of the St. Cloud area. He is honest, trustworthy and the best choice to represent the Granite City at the State Capitol.”

Monday, December 19, 2005

Randy Kelly Redux

From DownwithTyranny ...Isaac (a local MN writer) writes a 'What and Why' Re: St. Paul Mayor Randy Kelly losing 69 to 31%. It was an interesting read.

Instead, he insisted that a stupid thing he did was the right thing, and in the face of evidence to the contrary, he refused to back down or admit it had been a mistake.

In the end, Randy Kelly came across as a surrogate of the Bush administration, and that was a dumb association to hold onto in a solidly Democratic city.

I wouldn't worry about ol' Randy though: It wouldn't surprise me to find out he has a cushy future ready and waiting in the Republican Party.

Had Enough? Vote Democratic!

Had enough?
Vote Democratic!

December 18, 2005:
Breaking News from ABCNEWS.com:

Bush Claims U.S. Forces Are On The "Road To Victory"

May 1, 2003:
White House Admits 'Mission Accomplished' Banner
Bush incorrectly disavows 'Mission Accomplished' banner
Bush Disavows Mission Accomplished Banner
White House Clarifies 'Mission Accomplished' Banner

Merry Holiday, Can't We All Get Along?

Why do they want to trademark anything red and green?...
Aha, now I get it!

Merry Holiday-)
Kudos to Jesus' General.

Saturday, December 17, 2005

MN CD2 Gossip Roundup

Coleen Rowley will be adding a manager shortly in her bid for office. The short list has several excellent picks but look for a ex-minnesotan now working in California who has DCCC connections. A decision and announcement by the first of the year.

Teresa Daly (who ran against Kline last election and lost by 16%) will be running for Burnsville City Council. I like Teresa but she had a hard time defining herself on national issues that differ enough from Kline's stance and also resonated with the second CD voters. I look for her to continue fundraising for DFL candidates. Teresa has shown herself to be of real value and I hope the DFL is paying attention to that fact!

Sharon Marko (Rep in 57) will be deciding if she's running for congress in the next few weeks. Because Sharon is politically savvy, I predict she'll stay out of it for the following reasons... Marko will have a hard time explaining her support of Randy Kelly who got soundly defeated by the voters of St. Paul. Her decision to support Randy in his re-election bid given his support of President Bush will not sit well with CD2 activist. Additionally Sharon doesn't have the same national profile, media coverage or ability to raise money as Coleen.

The first of the year may bring a challenger to Jim Carlson(38) in his bid for MN Senate. Don't know all the issues but seems to stem from some dissatisfaction with Jim in the last election. Look for more on this as it develops.

Friday, December 16, 2005

Just Call Me St. Paul Sue

Checks and Balances attended GOP St. Cloud candidate Sue Ek's hearing...He's reporting that based on the evidence and the testimony...

St. Paul Ek 0
Rick Studer 1

Game over!

Shelley Madore (MN-D) A Good Day for Minnesota!

Shelley Madore, DFL Candidate for State Representative in MN 37A which covers western Apple Valley and the southeastern corner of Burnsville, posted this up on her website.

For what it's worth, Rep. Fran Bradley did do one good thing (and probably only one!), he got Shelley Madore to run for office.

According to the Star Tribune today, Rep. Fran Bradley, who won his last election by only 311 votes against DFLer Kim Norton, will not seek reelection in 2006. In the article by Dane Smith, Bradley says that "DFLers are making inroads in the Rochester area, once considered solid GOP territory."

As chairperson of the Health and Human Services committee, he was a major player responsible for the 2002 state budget cuts that have hurt so many families, especially those with children with disabilities. One of his most famous remarks, one that prompted me to get back into politics, was regarding state supplemental insurance program payments. Raising TEFRA fees was a primary objective for the 2002 budget session. I remember the quote being "Paying for this service is like my kid playing hockey, as a family you have to decide what your priorities are." This was the most ignorant and disrespectful statement I had ever heard, blaming families for needing extra help to keep their kids out of hospitals or state run facilities.

For those of you who don't know about this program, here is some detail. Parents can obtain this supplemental policy for additional coverage for medical supplies and services that their disabled children need to remain in their home. Oftentimes, the child's medical needs are not met by general employer based programs or the coverage is minimal. This policy is paid through TEFRA, a federal program that allows parents to buy into Medicaid services. The fees for this program have skyrocketed and many families cannot afford to provide the services for their children and look for help through the counties, school districts or just go without. Remember, this policy is supplemental to general employer based coverage. The fees run about $200 to $400 a month generally, although I have heard from families where the fees are several hundred dollars a month.

Many families have had their state refunds withheld because they just cannot afford to pay the TEFRA fee. Imagine your family being asked to pay for increased employer based insurance plans and then another $400 a month so your child could get coverage for his/her medical supplies, physical therapy or medications not covered by the employer plan.

Remember too that we have not yet provided coverage to the 40,000 folks taken out of the Minnesota Care program in 2002. The budget just passed in this session only stopped more people from being cut.

Another reason to vote for real change in leadership on November 7th.
Shelley Madore
HD 37A

Thursday, December 15, 2005

MN Help Wanted: Any Honest GOP Candidates?

Does the MN GOP have no honest members left willing to run for office? It seems both Republican candidates for St. Cloud's Special Election, upcoming on December 27, find themselves with legal problems.

Sue Ek is being challenged (with plenty of good solid evidence) that appears to show she 'mis-stated' her residency in order to run for office. And now it looks like Minnesota State Senate candidate Dan Ochsner (R) has broken campaign law by 'doctoring' literature.
“The watchdog group raises some serious campaign violation issues,” DFL Associate Chair Donna Cassutt said. “We believe that this is an issue that deserves further investigation and look forward to Ochsner answering these charges.”
MN GOP Chair Carey needs to do some recruiting among the faithful for some honest, ethical and law abiding republicans...It won't be easy. My advice: Be sure to screen and do a background check.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

The Bachmann Amendment: Smoke and Mirrors

I've been married forever (30+ yrs). During that time I lived in states that recognize gay marriages and states that don't. But never was my own marriage endangered by gay marriages. Not once! In fact, I'd like to see one that was? Yes marriages have a tough time (there's a reason why so many fail) but I willing to bet it isn't because Paul married John.

If an elected official or candidate feels that the 'sanctity of marriage is in jeopardy' 'endangered' or 'threatened', or it's 'integrity' is at risk... then start by removing the issues that cause divorces. I believe the economy would be high on the list followed by lack of services to young working families such as affordable day care and adequate education and transportation. Those are the real threats to marriages.

Don't want a gay marriage? Don't have one. Remember separation of church and government? Let churches decide, but governments should treat all the same and equal under the law. The Bachmann amendment is smoke and mirrors meant to elicit a scapegoat for all the daily wrongs within our society that affect marriages while disenfranchising a whole class of Americans citizens. Substitute the words Black, White, Latino, Native, Jewish... for Gay and read the amendment again. Then let's call this what it is...Discrimination, meanness, small mindedness, unjustified and specific targeting against a group of Americans. It's simply unacceptable.

I quoted John Lennon a few days ago and his words come to mind again "I'm sick and tired of hearing things from uptight, short-sighted, narrow-minded hypocrites - All I want is the truth - Just gimme some truth"

St Cloud Times Online Debate
What is your stand on the state constitutional amendment defining marriage as a union between a man and a woman?
Larry Haws:
Current Minnesota law does not allow marriage between same sex couples. We do not need to reinforce the law with a constitutional amendments. I believe that the language already codified in state law is strong enough.
Sue Ek:
I support the constitutional amendment and would vote YES to allow voters in Saint Cloud and Haven Township the opportunity to decide if THEY believe the state constitution should recognize marriage as a union between one man and one woman. This is a key difference between me and my opponent.

Lloydletta's Nooz and Commentary :
Actually another key difference seems to be that Haws lives in St Cloud and Ek lives in St Paul.

St Cloud Senate Candidates: What is your stand on the state constitutional amendment defining marriage as a union between a man and a woman?
Dan Becker
I will vote in favor of this. I do not support changing the definition of marriage between a man and a woman. I think if the gay community had supported the civil union concept during the Clinton years, this would have been done. Let me also say I do not like to amend the constitution often because it takes away from the integrity of it.

Tarryl Clark:
It is currently against the law in Minnesota for gays to marry. As I stated in Q5, IÂ’m opposed to amending the state constitution unless thereÂ’s a real need to. That standard applies here. Much of the last two years have been wasted on legislative debate on this issue, mainly by politicians who hope to push voter turnout one way or another in the next election. ThatÂ’s not the purpose of the constitutional amendment process. If it were the case that MinnesotaÂ’s law, which has been on the books for years, were overturned, then the question could be put to the voters.

Dan Ochsner:
I lieve the sanctity of marriage is in jeopardy. I will fight the Senate DFL MajorityÂ’s position against the DOMA amendment and will work hard to allow Minnesotans the right to vote to permanently protect and define marriage.

Monday, December 12, 2005

Ford Bell Wants To Know Why?

Bell posed the question of why, in a time of war, isn't President Bu$h having his picture taken and giving the funds to veterans, rather than funding someone else's campaign.
"This is the first war since the Civil War where regular people are holding bakes sales and garage sales to buy the body armor and tools our military needs."

I feel compelled to point out the obvious, Bu$h doesn't care. Never has, never will. That's why I see 30 percent in his future along with several indictments.

Sunday, December 11, 2005

I'm sick and tired of hearing things from uptight, short-sighted, narrow-minded hypocritics

All I want is the truth

Just gimme some truth

October 9, 1940 - December 8, 1980


Happy Xmas (War is Over)
John Lennon, Yoko Ono

(Happy Xmas Kyoko
Happy Xmas Julian)

So this is Xmas
And what have you done
Another year over
And a new one just begun
And so this is Xmas
I hope you have fun
The near and the dear one
The old and the young

A very Merry Xmas
And a happy New Year
Let's hope it's a good one
Without any fear

And so this is Xmas
For weak and for strong
For rich and the poor ones
The world is so wrong
And so happy Xmas
For black and for white
For yellow and red ones
Let's stop all the fight

A very Merry Xmas
And a happy New Year
Let's hope it's a good one
Without any fear

And so this is Xmas
And what have we done
Another year over
A new one just begun
And so happy Xmas
We hope you have fun
The near and the dear one
The old and the young

A very Merry Xmas
And a happy New Year
Let's hope it's a good one
Without any fear
War is over, if you want it
War is over now

Happy Xmas

Ek Now Must Face The Music

The Minnesota Supreme Court prepares next week to decide whether one of the candidates, Sue Ek, should be removed from the ballot. Attorney Alan Weinblatt filed a lawsuit Friday on behalf of St. Cloud resident, DFL volunteer and Progressive Caucus Chair Rick Studer.

The suit maintains that Sue Ek's name is wrongfully included on the ballot as a candidate for House seat in 15B as Ms. Ek doesn't meet the residency requirements. According to Lloydletta's Nooz and Comments,the lawsuit has several pieces of information that list her home address in St. Paul. Clever Sponge has a screen shot from a cache file showing Ek as vice chair in District 4 as of November 2005. I like his analyst:
By no means do we think this is a conspiracy, but surely the folks in the 4th Congressional District Republican group would have told the MN GOP that...well, Mrs. Ek wasn't exactly a St. Cloud resident. Stupidity is much more fun than conspiracy.
This is fairly open and shut...The fat lady is finishing up with her aria...On July 9, Sue Ek officially declared that she was a resident of St. Paul. She signed an affidavit stating so. As this is within the six month residency requirement, she is not eligible to be a candidate for the State House from district 15B.

I heard her attorney stating on the radio Ek was 'confused' about what the affidavit was asking for...Seems fairly straight forward to me. It's up to the judge now to decide if she lied then or if she's lying now. Either way, not much in the way of character credibility left for Ek to run on.

Saturday, December 10, 2005

Eugene McCarthy had Minnesota Values

Eugene McCarthy's political career was launched using the mimeograph machine at the College of St. Thomas in Saint Paul MN, where he was a professor of economics and sociology. He won what most said was an unwinnable race, and was elected to the House of Rep. in 1949. He was the first member of Congress willing to stand up and debate the anti-Communist Irish bully, Joe McCarthy.

Through the years, he took on many bullies not the least of which was the vietnam war. He was quiet, thoughtful, and purposeful, speaking out with heart on causes like healthcare and welfare. America is far better today because Eugene McCarthy took his ideas to the people in open debate, campaigning and speaking.

To paraphrase his famous 1960 nominating speech of Adlai Stevenson, McCarthy was a favorite son not of any state, but of many states of mind; not of any one short-term campaign, but of the longterm campaign for rationality, responsiveness, and dedication by government to raise the living standards and security of the American people.

The press dubbed him Clean Gene when he ran against the war in Vietnam. The Needle was his nickname on Capitol Hill, because of his quick and wicked wit. The poet Robert Lowell declared him, "A One-man Greek Chorus."A friend says, "He is Renaissance Man Super-squared." But I like to think of him as just another Minnesotan with 'Minnesota values'.

Pryor No Longer 'Here Now'

In the 60's and 70's, anything Richard Pryor did seemed to support an irreverence that poked itself in the eyes of the establishment... Especially Nixon and bible thumpers. He was willing to laugh at what he was and how others framed him.

For weeks after he released a new routine, everyone would mimic it. His art both provoking and entertaining but often edgy just beyond acceptable...Still, Richard had a little boy's charm that made us forget what went before. Yes I know he was self destructive, hot tempered, a brawler, homemaker, drug, boozer...All of which made him and his comedy more shocking, more tragic, more real.

Richard just recently (Oct) got the Mark Twain Prize. He had trouble and others present had to accept and talk for him, but he knew and commended "It's nice to be regarded on a par with a great white man -- now that's funny!"

Toward the end of "Richard Pryor: Here and Now" he does a bit about Hell. "Had so much fun they kicked me out that motherfucka," he says, looking simultaneously mischievous, embarrassed and smug. "I know I ain't goin' to heaven, I'm just going."

I guess I'll see him down the road some.

Question of the Day:

Will America ever be completely out of Iraq?

I was just watching TODAY and they were talking about the Iraq war and the administration.

Chris Mathews (from Hardball) was asked about the President's upswing in the polls. Chris said that since 9/11 Bush's ratings have gone down every month. This is the first time that it has gone up. He said that it wouldn't be a trend.

Here's the real interesting part - when asked what the problem was for the President. Chris said Iraq. He said that he's been in contact with numerous people from the administration and the interesting thing about all of his conversations is that no one has ever mentioned a time when we would be out of Iraq. "We will be the military presence in the middle east for ever".
He followed with a question: "The question is will America ever be completely out of Iraq?"

So the question for the day is:
Will America ever be completely out of Iraq?

Another questions:
Is it the administration's goal to be the military presence in the Middle East - permanently?

Friday, December 09, 2005

Peace Love and Christmas...or Else!

Bill O'Reilly steps up for Christmas:

I am not going to let oppressive, totalitarian, anti-Christian forces in this country diminish and denigrate the holiday and the celebration. I am not going to let it happen. I'm gonna use all the power that I have on radio and television to bring horror into the world of people who are trying to do that. And we have succeeded. You know we've succeeded. They are on the run in corporations, in the media, everywhere. They are on the run, because I will put their face and their name on television, and I will talk about them on the radio if they do it. There is no reason on this earth that all of us cannot celebrate a public holiday devoted to generosity, peace, and love together. There is no reason on the earth that we can't do that. So we are going to do it. And anyone who tries to stop us from doing it is gonna face me.
Adaptive version: If I don't see a little generosity, peace, and love from you assholes, I'm going to start bustin' heads.

Be Merry...or else!

Sue Ek: Lying Then or Lying Now?

Tasty tidbits from the St. Cloud Time has Sue Ek living in St. Paul 12 days after the deadline to establish residency in St. Cloud. Minnesota law requires legislative candidates to establish residency in the district(15B) at least six months before the election. For this election, the deadline was June 27.

However Sue Ek signed an affidavit on July 9 that reads:
"I, Susanne Ek, the undersigned, certify that I reside (as a renter) in the dwelling located at 1258 Niles Avenue in St. Paul. I would like to establish a nonprofit/home office type of business at the aforementioned address. I understand and agree to comply with the conditions stipulated for home occupation.

When questioned Thursday Ek said she didn't exactly mean that and it shouldn't make her ineligible as a candidate.

???!?!??!wtf...so she signs off on living there to qualify for being a home business but in fact she doesn't???? Either way she's lying then or lying now.

Under Minnesota law, only if someone mounts a successful challenge through the courts can a candidate can be removed from the ballot. Which brings me to my question of yestarday, Will the DFL file a legal challenge?

Ek - One Way or Another

I posted yestarday that while Ek is claiming to be a 'life long' resident of St. Cloud, MPR had an interview (last April) where Ek stated she lived in St. Paul. Now she's flip flopping to say 'she may have misspoken."

Ms. Ek also finds breaking the law
“...kind of funny…to me it's a non-issue. Home is St. Cloud.”
The rest of us find it not so funny and want some answers.

Ek has either broken the law regarding the residency requirements in her run for office in St. Cloud or...She broke the law by stating St. Paul is her residence and voting there.

Which is it? One way or another...the law appears to have been broken.

“Ms. Ek has painted herself into a corner,” said DFL Communications Director David Ruth. “She either broke laws regarding residency or, as it’s been our contention all along, she has recently been living in St. Paul breaking state law by running for office in St. Cloud. Her St. Paul neighbors are the ones who reported this to us. They say Ek has been living in St. Paul as recently as the past month or so. Add the fact that she was listed in the phone book, registered and voted in Ramsey County, and was a vice chair for the GOP 4th congressional district, it is hard to believe otherwise.”

“If Ek did not, as she claims, live in St. Paul, then she has to answer to breaking state laws,” said Ruth. “If she always maintained residence in St. Cloud, then the votes she cast in St. Paul between 2001 and 2004 may be in violation of Minnesota Statute 201.016.”

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Will the DFL File a Complaint Against Ek?

The Republican candidate for St Cloud representative, Sue Ek might not be a resident of St Cloud. Checks and Balances posted about this earlier.

NPR last night had an old interview from last year with Ms. Ek where she claimed to live in St. Paul but now she says she's always lived in St. Cloud...perhaps there's two of her.

Off CD2 listserver:

Page 16 of the MN Election Judge guide, "People can only vote in the precinct where they live......If someone lives in more than one place, he or she must decide which place is his or her principal residence for voting"..."A person can have only one residence".....

On page 17, Voter Registration Application, number 15: "Be sure to tell voters to read the oath on the card and sign it only if all parts apply to them. By signing, they affirm that all the statements on the card are true and correct and that they meet the requirements....Giving false information to register to vote is a felony punishable by up to 5 years in prison and/or a fine of up to $10,000."

If Ek used a utility bill to prove residency, her name had to be on the utility bill (even though her parents own the house) - unless she used a driver's license with the St. Paul address. And she's trying to state that she was really a St. Cloud resident???

Wonder if the DFL will file a complaint? Based on everything I've heard...they should.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Coleen Rowley Tied for 'Progressive Patriot'

If you haven't already, please take a moment and vote for CD2 MN candidate Coleen Rowley as Senator Russ Feingold's "Pick a Progressive Patriot"

The results so far (Dec 6, 945PM) have Coleen tied for first place. Tell your friends! Whichever candidate has the most votes at midnight on December 14th will be awarded a $5000 contribution from the Progressive Patriots Fund. Click to vote.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Among Likely CD2 Delegates, Coleen Rowley Wins!

In a newly released unscientific survey where mnpACT! collected data from those most likely to be delegates in CD2 (loosely based on how they answered),,,
This was an invitation survey to 3 activist groups:

(1) mnpACT core group
(2) CD2 Listserv
(3) MN Progressive caucus Listserv

We opened this survey for 24 hours on November 26th and received 143 responses.

The results are here but it appears that CD2 likes Coleen Rowley and think a lot of Amy Klobuchar. The other candidate matchups were closer but still showed some interesting results.

Vote for Coleen Rowley

Senator Feingold's leadership PAC, the Progressive Patriots Fund, is conducting an online voting event from December 5 through December 14. The candidate receiving the most votes wins a $5,000 contribution.

Coleen Rowley is one of 11 candidates identified in the Senator's Feingold's group. Please help her win by casting a vote at here!

Money is one of the ways we can elect our own...so go vote Coleen Rowley!!

Sunday, December 04, 2005

The Agonist Vells for Coleen Rowley

"Rarely do we do activism here at The Agonist. In 2006 we may adopt 1 or 2 candidates, tops. Coleen Rowley will be one of them so I ought to explain why. Anyone who stood up to the President, John Ashcroft and the Director of the FBI for reasons of pure, unadulturated patriotism, deserves my support and yours. Coleen is not a politician. She doesn't talk like one, she doesn't act like one but, there is no question in my mind that if she is elected (and she'll probably be running against a Tom DeLay crony, from Texas to boot!) she will become the conscience of the Congress. We need that.

So, if you have a few shekels, will you please toss them her way. Her campaign is a worthy cause so please donate HERE. This won't be the last pitch on her behalf you hear from me but I promise you I will keep them to a minimum. Sometimes we have to support those who exemplify our ideals. And Coleen does that, she's Agonist approved."

In case you couldn't tell, Coleen Rowley is also Truth Surfer approved for all the above and then some!

Friday, December 02, 2005

Innuendo, Gossip and the Pioneer Press

Pioneer Press Reporter Rachel E. Stassen-Berger gets an ‘F’ minus for her story on congressional candidate Coleen Rowley (D-MN-CD2).

Rachel quotes in her recent article on Coleen Rowley “Her fundraising has been disappointing, some say.”

Hmmmmmmm… the number one DFL congressional fundraiser in Minnesota during the last reporting cycle and sixth nation wide…give me a break…if that’s disappointing what qualifies in ‘some’s’ book? And just what other DFL candidate want2b in CD2 will be able to even match that, let alone exceed it?

Rachel stated "Daly lost by sixteen votes" ...hmmmmm.. 16 votes plus another 158,000+++ votes. It’s about as close to the truth as anything else she writes in her article.

When did reporters go from reporting facts to innuendo, gossip, and unsubstantiated ‘comments’ based on unnamed sources like ‘some’, ‘some analyst’, ‘and my personal favorite ‘money watchers’. Shouldn’t they ask for at least the resemblance of unbiased, fair and truthful reporting? Haven't we've had enough from the 'Judy Miller' school of reporting ...er... transcribing ...er.. spinning ... er.. oh hell just plain passing bad air for reporting!