Monday, August 29, 2005

Back to the Grind

First day back to work. I miss Summer already. I have a little break here, but not enough for anything extensive. I would like to point you all to this, though:

A trifecta of terrible prospects for the GOP

I found it enlightening. But of course, I have an objective mind.

More later, hopefully. I have a new position this year, and I am starting to feel overwhelmed already.


Friday, August 26, 2005

Thursday, August 25, 2005


Checks and Balances claims to have the scoop (registration required):
Questions have been circling about the person behind Minnesota Democrats Exposed and we have found a person with a connection to blogging that is a good candidate.

. . .

So recent information that has come our way is the Jerome Plagge is the person behind Minnesota Democrats Exposed. It will be interesting to see if now the anonymous source behind MDE either confirms or denies this idea. We encourage the folks at MDE to contact us and tell it how it is.
Jerome, of SD63 responds:
After picking myself off the floor, I realized I should maybe be nervous because MDE is so good he is making a few enemies and I don't wake a dead fish wrapped in paper delivered to my wife. So let me state unequivocally, SD63, aka Jerome Plagge, IS NOT MDE.
I received an E-Mail from Towle pointing me to the post on C&B and replied that it seemed like a circumstantial case to me.

I have commented previously on the anonymity of MDE.
I find it cowardly to hide behind an anonymous nom de plume when you are attempting to thrust yourself into the political spotlight. I believe it effects your credibility. It should also make one leery that if you can't even be honest about who you are, how can you trust the information that is being disseminated.
It is one thing to spout political ideology from an anonymous blog. But to continue to attack and hammer on individuals while hiding behind a name just seems wrong to me.


UPDATE: Confessions?!?

UPDATE II: MDE Responds!

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Robertson Makes Me Laugh

First he said this:
"If he thinks we're trying to assassinate him, I think we really ought to go ahead and do it," said Robertson on Monday's program. "It's a whole lot cheaper than starting a war."
and now he says this:
"I didn't say 'assassination.' I said our special forces should 'take him out.' And 'take him out' can be a number of things, including kidnapping; there are a number of ways to take out a dictator from power besides killing him. I was misinterpreted by the AP [Associated Press], but that happens all the time," Robertson said on "The 700 Club" program.
ANYONE who watched Robertson's complete, in context, statement could draw no other conclusion other then he was actively promoting the assassination of another world leader. Anyone who even attempts to spin it otherwise has absolutely no credibility with me.

This guy's a nut case, one of many on the other side of the aisle! OH, retract your claws my Righty brethren, the left has their share of goofballs, too!


Tuesday, August 23, 2005


There isn't much for me to really say about Robertson's call for the assassination of Hugo Chevez of Venezuela
"If he thinks we're trying to assassinate him, I think we really ought to go ahead and do it,"
when even members of the far Right are condemning him. But what is the reaction of the administration.
State Department spokesman Sean McCormack said Tuesday that Robertson has the right of any private citizen to say whatever he wants, but added that the televangelist's remarks "do not represent the views of the United States."

"His comments are inappropriate and, as we have said before, any allegations that we are planning to take hostile action against the Venezuelan government are completely baseless and without fact," McCormack said.
Robertson isn't just a 'private' citizens. He is a member of the inner circle, and a former GOP candidate for President.

When you think of how the Right has chastised others for their words, with calls for resignations or dismissals, why should this be any different.

Pat was wrong, his words should be condemned, not simply dismissed as inappropriate.

The affiliates who carry his program should dump him. He has crossed the line and should be dealt with appropriately,


Monday, August 22, 2005

But it's not serious

Humor from the STRIB:
Doctor: "Ma'am, your brother's heart is still strong but his brain is dead."

Sister: "Really? We've never had a liberal in the family."

From Garrison Keillor's annual joke show.
Only in Minnesota!


Friday, August 19, 2005

Happy Birthday!

Notable August 19th Birthdays:

1969 Matthew Perry, actor, Sydney, Chandler-Friends
1963 John Stamos, actor, General Hospital, Full House
1960 Morten Andersen, NFL kicker for the Atlanta Falcons
1956 Adam Arkin, actor, Busting Loose, Pearl, Northern Exposure
1952 Jonathan Frakes, actor, Commander Riker-Star Trek Next Gen
1951 John Deacon, British pop guitarist, Queen-Somebody to Love
1951 Lillian Muller, Grimstad Norway, playmate of year, Aug, 1975
1948 Tipper Gore, wife of vice president Al Gore, 1993-01
1946 William Jefferson "Bill" Clinton, 42nd U.S. President, D, 1993-01
1945 Ian Gillian, heavy metal rocker, Deep Purple-Knocking at Backdoor
1942 Fred Thompson, senator, R-Tenn, /actor, In the Line of Fire
1940 Jill St. John, [Oppenheim], , actress, Diamonds are Forever
1939 Ginger [Peter] Baker, England, drummer, Cream-White Room
1938 Diana Muldaur, actress, McCloud, Star Trek Next Gen, LA Law
1935 F Story Musgrave, Boston, MD/astronaut, STS 6, 51-F, 33, 44, 61, 80
1934 David F. Durenberger, Minnesota, Sen-R-MN, 1978-
1934 Renee Richards, [Richard Rankind], trans-sexual tennis player
1931 Willie Shoemaker, jockey, won 8,833 of 40,350 starts
1921 Gene Roddenberry, El Paso Texas, executive producer, Star Trek
1919 Malcolm Forbes, publisher, Forbes Magazine
1902 Ogden Nash, humorous poet, I'm a Stranger Here Myself
1871 Orville Wright, born in Dayton, Ohio, aviator

Oh, one more, ME!

See ya tonight!


Thursday, August 18, 2005

The Presidential Weather Report

Was I the only one that missed this from earlier in the week:
George W. Bush's mood swings have become so drastic that White House emails often contain 'weather reports' to warn of the President's demeanor. 'Calm seas' means Bush is calm while 'tornado alert' is a warning that he is pissed at the world.

Decreasing job approval ratings and increased criticism within his own party drives the President's paranoia even higher. Bush, in a meeting with senior advisors, called Senator Majority Leader Bill Frist a 'god-damned traitor' for opposing him on stem-cell research.
I had speculated that the President was out of touch with the American people, but it is becoming apparent that he may even be out of touch with his own people.

Stormy seas ahead, folks!


Drinking Moderately, tomorrow, Aug 19

You have drinking liberally on Wednesday, and drinking conservatively on Thursday, but tomorrow, on August 19th, you can drink moderately!!!

Come join me in celebrating the 45th anniversary of my existence and my 5th year of wedded wonderment!

A fine spread including Sloppy Joes, relish trays and other assorted munchies will be available. Keg beer and some sodas will also be provided

Festivities will begin about 6:ish and run till whenever. Stereo will be jamming and WiFi will be active for those that can't stay away from their computers for a couple hours of celebration. You may want to bring a chair to rest your weary legs when needed.

Don't miss the blow out bash of the Summer:

E-Mail if you need directions (anokaflash -at- I expect a fine mix of Left leaning bloggers, MOB members, and Right wingers. (Mitch will be by, AntiStrib hinted at making an appearance along with the Power Liberals, Norwegianity and Yowling.

See ya tomorrow!


Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Fresh Troops

One of the largest deployments of Minnesota Guard members will begin in October:
About 2,600 Minnesota National Guard troops will leave the state sometime in October for training and an eventual deployment to southwest Asia.

The mobilization of the 34th Infantry Division's First Brigade Combat Team will be Minnesota's largest overseas Guard deployment since World War II.

Adjutant General Larry Shellito said Tuesday the official notification came on Monday. The specific country where the soldiers will end up was not known, but they are being mobilized in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.
My son, the Marine, received orders recently. He will be deployed early next Spring. He has been training heavy as an aircraft mechanic, so hopefully that will keep him in green zone areas. But war is a viscous game, and no one is safe anywhere.

Godspeed to all the troops engaged in keeping our homeland secure. I pray that they will come home safe . . . and soon!


Monday, August 15, 2005

Air America Redux:A Message from Janet Robert

I received an E-Mail from Janet Robert this afternoon. It was a reply to my message from last Friday, but addressed the memo and some other issues. The E-Mail is identical to one forwarded to me earlier in the afternoon (and this post) by someone else who inquired about station policy, so this is the formal response she is presenting, and will be posting on the AM950 website.

First, the Memo. The memo was authenticated by Ms. Robert, however, it was described as an earlier draft and was not the final policy adopted on June 1, 2005. That policy is:
Because certain hot button social issues such as gun control, abortion, or gay marriage tend to arouse strong emotions among our listening audience, JR Broadcasting wishes to be respectful in discussing these issues. It is the position of JR Broadcasting that persons often hold positions on these issues as deeply held moral beliefs that therefore deserve respect, and focus on these issues can undermine the very opportunities we seek to advance.

In the event a host should ever wish to discuss these issues on the air, JR Broadcasting requests that the host notify the station manager prior to airing the discussion.
and with regards to Nick Coleman:
I do not discuss publicly personnel issues, but Nick Coleman has never been censored and that is not the reason he is no longer with the station. Furthermore, Nick knows that one of the compliments I regularly made to him was that his rants against the Iraqi War were his shining moment. Anyone who ever listened to his show also knows that.
Thank you to my readers for dropping me information and pointing me in the right correct directions, especially Mr. Coleman for having the courtesy to respond to me in a timely manner, and Ms. Robert for clarifying AM950's policies.


Not on 950

The Strib has no problem reporting on it, why not local progressive radio!
Democrats seek dialogue on abortion

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Democrats looking for a new voice on abortion are getting help from Rep. Jim Oberstar, an abortion opponent from Minnesota's Iron Range who is pushing to broaden the party's message on the issue.

He is one of several leading Democrats playing a prominent role on Capitol Hill to find common ground between the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and Democrats for Life of America, which has long felt shunned by the party.
See, this is how things get done. This is how you find common ground. This is why Oberstar is a LEADER. This is why sweeping issues like this under the rug will kill a radio station, not nurture growth.

But that's just me!


Air America Flap Wrap

It has become clear to me that the local Air America affiliate has an agenda that may not be consistent with the more progressive National organization. It will be interesting to see what type of relationship is built once Al Franken moves to Minnesota and starts broadcasting from here. I find it a reach to think that Al, or any of the AA National talent would conform to a 'hands off hot topics' policy.

My Political views tend to line up more closely with Ms. Robert, but that does not mean I will unconditionally protect her and her radio station. To state one thing to the press; "We do not censor anybody on this radio station," yet disseminate a document that contradicts that public impression, "JR Broadcasting will not permit discussion of the issues of gun control, abortion, or gay marriage." can be a credibility killer.

There is also a concern regarding the stifling of candidates, as mentioned in the comments below. The Memo addresses this issues in a dry, legal sort of way, aligning with the FCC requirements for equal time, with the procedure for requesting this time outlined.

The left can't afford to be splintered at this time. They have a Senate seat to retain, and momentum from the last election to harness, at least on the local level, to recapture state government. They can only succeed by working together. Internal power squabbles will only hurt this effort and feed the Right Wing blogosphere with more red meat.

It is controversies like this that convince me that the Left's worst enemy, are those from the Left themselves.


Saturday, August 13, 2005

Actual Air America MN Policy?

I received an E-Mail today, which I have not been able to authenticate. However, the content of the attachment seems on the up and up. What caught my eye was an inconsistency with Janet Robert's statement to City Pages yesterday.
"We do not censor anybody on this radio station," Robert says
However, the memo sent to me, clearly stipulates in item #6:
JR Broadcasting will not permit discussion of the issues of gun
control, abortion, or gay marriage.
Now that certainly seems like a form of censorship.

The attachment sent to me was an internal memo, dated today. Here is the intro to the memo, and item #6. Most of the rest was boiler plate radio stuff. I'll let you all make the determination as to it's accuracy and credibility. Should I receive confirmation or additional info, I will post accordingly.

Of course, if station management would respond to my E-Mails, we could clear all this up in a more timely manner. Here is the pertinent information from the attachment
DATE: 8/12/05

This memorandum sets forth JR Broadcasting's policy regarding certain programming. This memorandum is intended to address certain issues and not as a comprehensive statement of all programming policy. Specific questions should be directed to the station manager.

If any programming is broadcast in violation of this policy, the responsible party or parties will be subject to sanction, up to and including termination of employment or contract, and indemnification of any party harmed as a result of such violation.


6. Certain Subjects Prohibited

JR Broadcasting will not permit discussion of the issues of gun control, abortion, or gay marriage. It is the policy of JR Broadcasting that discussion around these issues tend to be more sensationalistic than substantial. In order to provide for reasoned, substantial discussion of other issues, JR Broadcasting prohibits discussion of gun control, abortion, or gay marriage. Exceptions to this policy can be obtained prior to broadcast by request in writing to the station Manager.
What frustrates me, is I always thought I was on their side.


UPDATE: Extracting properties information has shown that the memo was written within a law firm that has experience working in the broadcasting field. The author listed is on the 'Professional Staff' of this law firm.

Creation and Modified dates match based on when I downloaded it. But
there is a 'Last Printed' date of 5/4/2005.

I feel relatively confident that the information in the memo is authentic and have forwarded the original to others for their opinion.

Friday, August 12, 2005

Craig Mulls Nick's Ponder

Craig Westover, freelance columnist with the PiPress, tackles Nick Coleman's ponder from yesterday:
Now here's a question to mull:

Can "liberal" or "progressive" talk radio prosper under an
ownership that is neither?
Well, having mulled for bit, the answer is that if Nick is defining “liberal” and “progressive,” the answer is probably “no.” To “prosper” in a free market, one has to appeal to a wide enough audience that one can entice advertisers and consequently make enough money to support operations if not show a profit. That probably means appealing to a wider audience than is interested in "speculation on the size of the genitals of the Power Line guys.” It doesn't mean a station can't have a point of view -- it does mean its host ought to be able to frame the point of view so it's possible to have a discussion not just a bashing.

Sounds like Air America is getting that message and apparently Nick wasn‘t.

So there is his perspective. Anyone else?


Thursday, August 11, 2005

Cat's Out of the Bag

The Blotter has just posted "Nick Coleman: Off the leash!".

The article aligns with what Nick shared with me. So, in his own words, and with his blessing "You are free to post.", this is what he told me:
I essentially quit AM950 * refusing to come in for work and asking to be placed on "hiatus" by the station on July 25. My official resignation was tendered Aug. 8. I'll give you a short list of reasons why:

1) Station management increasingly demanded control over "topics, tone and guests" and ordered certain hot button topics off limits, such as guns, gays and abortion. I refused to comply.

2) Station management repeatedly disrupted program development by making mercurial staffing changes without my knowledge or consent. (Last straw: Producer Joe Palan, whose hiring I approved, was fired without my consent on July 25. I went on hiatus the same day. The station told listeners I was still on family leave, but that was not true).

3) The station, despite its on-air support for the "dignity of workers," mistreats its own employees (who have no union protections).

4) I do not like wingnuts, of any stripe.

Now here's a question to mull:
1) Can "liberal" or "progressive" talk radio prosper under an
ownership that is neither?

Nick Coleman

Further info:
Producer Palan was hired in June. Two days later, the station fired Tim Dennis, the show's board operator. This destroyed what little chemistry and camaraderie we had been able to develop. A few days later, the baby was born and I went on leave. I was gone two weeks and returned to the air one day * July 25 * to do my show.

Later that very day, Palan was fired. That's when I called station management to express my anger over the continuing interference and to request to be placed on hiatus. On July 29, I informed the station that I would return only if if Palan and Dennis were re-hired, and only if station owner Janet Robert stopped interfering with the show. For a week or so, things looked like they might work out. But on Aug. 8, I was told that nothing would change.

I resigned.
So it seems that their is some internal battles going on regarding
content. It is no secret that Janet is a Pro Life democrat, so there
may be conflicts with more traditional DFL platform issues. But I
would hope there is a significant level of autonomy for someone who
has their own show. Here is what Janet had to say to 'The Blotter':
Janet Robert strenuously denies most of Coleman's claims. She did not interfere with Coleman's choice of topics, she says, including any criticism of the war in Iraq. (She states that she, too, opposes it.) "We do not censor anybody on this radio station," Robert says. On the Joe Palan matter, Roberts says simply, "He quit." She repeats, too, "I don't discuss personnel matters."
I included Wendy Wilde in my inquiry. I am more curious to hear from her, now.


Nick Coleman Responds

I took Nick up on his offer in the comments below, and contacted him regarding his absence from the Air America lineup. Short version:
I essentially quit AM950, refusing to come in for work and asking to be placed on "hiatus" by the station on July 25. My official resignation was tendered Aug. 8.
The long version is forthcoming, as Mr. Coleman went into some 'reasons' as to what lead up to his departure. I have a couple E-Mails out to Air America staff and will wait for their side of the story before I put it all together, but I won't wait too long.

Let's just say there are creative differences involved, and I am curious to hear what Janet Robert has to say.


Coupla Updates

Rewriting History
Let the linking begin:
Mark Kennedy's U.S. Senate campaign website, under fire for deleting negative comments from news stories before posting them, will now link users to the full text of articles, a spokeswoman said Wednesday.
They website has also removed the AP stories which caused the ruckus.
parts of articles from the Star Tribune and New York Times were still on, labeled as "Excerpted from ..." It appeared that Associated Press articles had been removed from the site.
Cheers to the Kennedy camp for addressing this issue in a timely manner!

Meet with Cindy
Today's eviction day for Cindy. The Secret Service had threatened to remove Cindy, citing her as a security risk, if she was still in place today. The Iconoclast has set up a Cindy Watch Page, so that would be the best place to find updates.

12:05 p.m.
Nathan Diebenow reporting for the Iconoclast:

I talked with Jim Harrington, Cindy's lawyer from Texas, who informed me of the legal situation here. He said that the Sheriff's Department is kind of in a bind because the people technically have the right of way on the road to walk on it, but not on the shoulders, the 8 ft. easement, so they are letting the people around here stay on the side of the road. There apparently is no easement statute in this county. There have been no First Amendment quarrels out here before.

He also said that, legally, there shouldn't be any problem with the President driving through here and having the protestors here, since, basically, she's just a mother wanting to talk to him. He pointed out that there are alternatives instead of moving the campers. Like in previous instances, the Secret Service could patrol with their dogs to make sure there are no crazies. There are alternatives to just kicking people out.


Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Rewriting History

The Kennedy Campaign takes a page from the Rovian handbook:
The headline on Mark Kennedy's U.S. Senate campaign website, over excerpts from an Associated Press article, said he is "A Common-Sense Get Things Done Guy," and the AP material under the headline made the case that the Republican congressman voted with Democrats on 10 key issues this year.

Missing from the story were 13 sentences in which Democrats and political analysts accused Kennedy of disguising a career of extreme conservative voting by only recently casting a few votes with Democrats as he prepares for a U.S. Senate race. No link was supplied to the original version of the AP story, so readers who came to this article via the Kennedy website might think that they were getting the AP's portrayal of the candidate as a bipartisan moderate.
Amazing, a headline that reads "A Common-Sense Get Things Done Guy," taken right from the article. Oh wait, wherein the article was that:
That phrase appeared in the article as Kennedy's description of himself
Ohhh, that'll hurt.

Campaign's use clipping and excerpts to their advantage all the time. But this is to an extreme that has even peeved the AP themselves:
The AP is not pleased about the Kennedy campaign's editing of the article, and its attorney in Washington called the campaign Tuesday afternoon.

The lawyer requested that the material be removed as quickly as possible, said Dave Pyle, AP's Minneapolis bureau chief. "Number one, they are not authorized to use the content. And number two, if they were, they'd never be allowed to alter the content the way they have," Pyle said.
The egregiousness goes a step further in that they wouldn't even link to the original stories
Campaign websites commonly provide online links to articles that are favorable to the candidate, and no one expects a candidate to post an unflattering profile, West said. But Kennedy has gone a step further, he said, excluding all unflattering references on a sentence-by-sentence basis and providing no link to the full version of the article.
The local spin doctors will be defending their anointed candidate, but I would hope the objective side of them will denounce this kind of deceptive behavior. There is too much mud and mess in the campaign business as it is. Let's not pollute the race with the continued deception of the people. Haven't we had enough of that from the Rovian machine already.


Tuesday, August 09, 2005

No More Nick?

A commenter over at Shot in the Dark noticed a change in the local Air America affiliates Lineup:
12:00am - 2:00am
The Majority Report-Best of
Janeane Garofalo & Sam Seder

2:00am - 4:00am
Randi Rhodes (Best Of)

4:00am - 5:00am
Rachel Maddow

5:00am - 8:00am
Morning Sedition

8:00am - 11:00am
Wendy Wilde Show
Twin Cities Produced Show featuring
Wendy Wilde

11:00am - 2:00pm
Al Franken Show
Al Franken & Katherine Lanpher

2:00pm - 5:00pm
Ed Schultz Show

5:00pm - 6:00pm
Wendy Wilde Show
(Highlights from the morning's show)

6:00pm - 9:00pm
The Majority Report
Janeane Garofalo & Sam Seder

9:00pm - 12:00am
Mike Malloy Show
No Nick . . . . Hmmmmmmm, Vacation, the axe, a break . . . anyone know the scoop?


UPDATE: Mitch did some digging:

It started with a bit of standard boilerplate on their website stating Coleman was out on parental leave.

But over this past week, the station's schedule page was rebuilt, and Coleman's show wasn't a part of it.

A phone call to the KTNF office earlier today confirmed it: Coleman's show is history.

I asked "So is he returning"

The woman on the other end of the line sounded uncomfortable. "We're going ahead with plans for a new morning show", she replied.

Meet with Cindy

Cindy Sheehan has been camped out a Crawford trying to get an audience with the President. See, her son died in Iraq, and she wants some answers. Reasonable enough:
The mother of a U.S. soldier slain in Iraq was denied a face-to-face meeting with President Bush here Saturday after she walked through a ditch-like path in the August heat to the President’s Prairie Chapel Ranch.

“I didn't come all this way from California to stand here in a ditch,” said Cindy Sheehan, 48, co-founder of Gold Star Families for Peace, attempting to continue her trek to the ranch.

Even though two of the President’s aides later agreed to deliver her message to him, Sheehan said that she would remain in Crawford for the whole month, if need be, until she is granted a private audience with the commander-in-chief to ask him for what “noble cause” did her son die overseas.

“If he doesn't come out to talk to me in Crawford, I'll follow him to D.C., and I'll camp out on his lawn,” she said, to a round of applause from her supporters. “I'll go to prison. I don't want to live in a country where people are treated this way.”

What does the President do, he sics the Secret Service on her and threatens her with arrest:
In the early afternoon, we got word that if we were still there by Thursday, we were going to be deemed a “security threat” to the president. Condi and Rummy are coming in on Thursday for a “policy” meeting. I just don’t understand why we will be a security threat on Thursday when we aren't now? If we don't leave on Thursday, we could be arrested. Well, I am not leaving. There are only three things that would make me leave: if George comes out and talks to me; if August comes to an end, or if I am arrested.
Sure this may seem like grandstanding. But the arrogance of the administration is going to turn this into a snowball rolling down a hill. Don't mess with a mother who lost her son.

So while the Right Wing media machine goes out of their way to demean and discredit her, she has one simple question for them:
Why do the right wing media so assiduously scrutinize the words of a grief filled mother and ignore the words of a lying president?
Anyone, anyone . . Bueller?!?



Discovery is Home!

Now we need to figure out this falling foam thing. Meanwhile, the unmanned program takes another shot at Mar's tomorrow!


Friday, August 05, 2005

Drinking Moderately!

You have drinking liberally on Wednesday, and drinking conservatively on Thursday, but two weeks from today, on August 19th, you can drink moderately!!!

Come join me in celebrating the 45th anniversary of my existence and my 5th year of wedded wonderment!

A Fine spread including Sloppy Joes, relish trays and other assorted munchies will be available. Keg beer and some sodas will also be provided

Festivities will begin about 6:ish and run till whenever. Stereo will be jamming and WiFi will be active for those that can't stay away from their computers for a couple hours of celebration. You may want to bring a chair to rest your weary legs when needed.

Don't miss the blow out bash of the Summer:

Friday August 19th, 6:00 PM

St. Paul, MN 55104

E-Mail if you need directions (anokaflash -at- I expect a fine mix of Left leaning bloggers, MOB members, and Right wingers, so start making arrangements today!


DOWN, DOWn, DOwn, Down . . . . .

The ole CiC continues to struggle in the hearts and minds of the American people:
(July results are in parentheses, X signifies less than 1 percent.)

1. Generally speaking, would you say things in this country are heading in the right direction, or are they off on the wrong track?
—Right direction, 37 percent (36)
—Wrong track, 59 percent (59)
—Not sure, 4 percent (6)

2. Overall, do you approve, disapprove or have mixed feelings about the way George W. Bush is handling his job as president?
—Approve, 42 percent (42)
—Disapprove, 55 percent (56)
—Mixed feelings, 2 percent (1)
—Not sure, X percent (2)

3. And when it comes to handling the economy, do you approve or disapprove or have mixed feelings about the way George W. Bush is handling that issue?
—Approve, 41 percent (42)
—Disapprove, 56 percent (56)
—Mixed feelings, 2 percent (2)
—Not sure, 1 percent (X)

4. And when it comes to domestic issues like health care, education and the environment, do you approve or disapprove or have mixed feelings about the way George W. Bush is handling that issue?
—Approve, 37 percent (42)
—Disapprove, 60 percent (56)
—Mixed feelings, 2 percent (1)
—Not sure, 2 percent (1)

5. When it comes to handling foreign policy issues and the war on terrorism, do you approve or disapprove or have mixed feelings about the way George W. Bush is handling that issue?
—Approve, 47 percent (51)
—Disapprove, 51 percent (48)
—Mixed feelings, 1 percent (2)
—Not sure, X percent (X)

6. When it comes to handling the situation in Iraq, do you approve or disapprove or have mixed feelings about the way George W. Bush is handling that issue?
—Approve, 38 percent (40)
—Disapprove, 59 percent (59)
—Mixed feelings, 2 percent (1)
—Not sure, 1 percent (X)

7. When it comes to Social Security, do you approve, disapprove or have mixed feelings about the way George W. Bush is handling that issue?
—Approve, 33 percent (35)
—Disapprove, 63 percent (61)
—Mixed feelings, 2 percent (2)
—Not sure, 1 percent (1)

8. Overall, do you approve, disapprove or have mixed feelings about the way Congress is handling its job?
—Approve, 33 percent (35)
—Disapprove, 62 percent (60)
—Mixed feelings, 3 percent (4)
—Not sure, 2 percent (1)

9. Now I'm going to read you some words that might be used to describe a person. As I read each word, please tell me whether you think the word describes George W. Bush or not?
August 2005: Yes, 63 percent; No, 36 percent; Not sure, 1 percent
January 2005: Yes, 66 percent; No, 33 percent; Not sure, 1 percent

August 2005: Yes, 48 percent; No, 50 percent; Not sure, 2 percent
January 2005: Yes, 53 percent; No. 45 percent; Not sure, 2 percent

August 2005: Yes, 64 percent; No, 35 percent; Not sure, 1 percent
January 2005: Yes, 65 percent; No, 34 percent; Not sure, 1 percent

August 2005: Yes, 56 percent; No, 43 percent; Not sure, 1 percent
January 2005: Yes, 62 percent; No, 37 percent; 1 percent

August 2005: Yes, 56 percent; No, 43 percent; Not sure, 1 percent
January 2005: Yes, 49 percent; No, 50 percent; Not sure, 1 percent

August 2005: Yes, 55 percent; No, 43 percent; Not sure, 2 percent
January 2005: Yes, 57 percent; No, 42 percent; Not sure, 1 percent

The last one is the most telling. People who think he is honest dropped to below 50% (48), and those that think he is arrogant has jumpped to 56%.

Do ya think the President still thinks he has any political capital in the bank? Sure he does, and there is 56% of the people that would agree that he thinks he does. But in the reality based world, he doesn't have a plugged nickles worth left!


Speaking of Birthdays!

Recent, early 50's (Korean Conflict), with his sister early 30's.

Today my Dad is 76. Still working, still active, still there for ya in a pinch if ya need him. Thanks, Dad! Have a GREAT birthday!

Love, your son!

Thursday, August 04, 2005

Performance Pay for Politicians

So the Governor is on another junket, promoting his latest proposal:
The proposal would hold legislators and the Governor accountable by requiring legislative work to be completed on time or face real consequences. The key element of the plan is:

· In the odd-numbered year of the legislative session, if the legislature did not pass a budget by the constitutional adjournment date legislators and the Governor would forfeit their salaries for the month of June.

If a budget is not completed by June 30 of the odd-numbered year, additional penalties would be incurred:

· Legislators and the Governor would forfeit their salaries for July and August or until the month after a budget is completed it if occurs after September 1.
So it's not really performance pay, it is a consequence for lack of performance. (Ya gotta keep an eye on these guys. They like calling things the exact opposite of what they really are. Think 'No Child Left Behind, et. al.)

I am all for some type of accountability package for legislators, but not sure if this is the way to go. We struggle as it is finding competent and qualified candidates to run for these offices, and something tells me this just may discourage some more.

There is no mention of how this would effect 'per diem' reimbursement (that additional daily expense allowance over and above their salaries). I could definitely support 'per diem' restrictions if there is a way to figure out how to not unduly punish outstate legislators.

I'm open to the concept, but leery as to what TPaw's actual motivation is. I think it is to save face . . . but that's just me!


Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Wetterling Redux: UPDATE

The DFL State Central Committee has an E-Mail discussion group which posts periodic Blog Updates. Yesterday, my 'Wetterling Redux' post was featured. The post prompted a follow up by the 6th District Chair, in an attempt to diffuse the 'rumor':

I just got off the phone with the Patty Wetterling and Elwyn Tinklenberg campaigns.

Both campaigns DENY these baseless rumors. Rest assured I will speak with both candidates in the coming days to figure out the best course of action to finally put this nonsense to rest.

In the meantime, It is my hope that people consider the source.

Greg Hansen, Chair
6th Congressional District DFL
The BOLD was contained in the message. I am not sure what 'source' they were referring to, Blogs in general, myself, or MDE. But in the interest of full disclosure, and my commitment to accurate information, I felt it appropriate to share this information.


Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Who's the Boss?

Via Cheers and Jeers:
"The White House announced that the public would not be allowed to see the memos produced by John Roberts when he represented the United States government as a lawyer. They say this is because of the attorney-client privilege.

Here's the part I don't understand: he represented the United States, we're the client, he's our lawyer. Shouldn't we be allowed see our own notes?"

--Jay Leno
It's really that simple people!


Monday, August 01, 2005

Wetterling Redux!

A rumor running through the local blogosphere hint at Wetterling possible readjusting her Senate campaign into a Congressional one:
I'm sure this will come as no surprise, but according to one of my real DFL insider friends, Patty Wetterling has all but announced that she'll be running for the 6th CD again because Klobuchar has proven to be much stronger than expected. Apparently Tinklenburg has agreed to get out of the 6th if Wetterling gets in, too."
With that, I point you to a post from last Spring:

I would still put my money on a Klobuchar Senate, Wetterling 6th pairing. It is so early that I am hoping Wetterling is choosing not to hedge her situation to allow for a more robust fund raising effort and a focused campaign. But when all is said and done, I hope she reconsiders.
It's still VERY early in this campaign process. Trial balloons will be floated, but eventually clear heads will prevail.


The Current

Current TV has debuted:
Gore and his fellow investors envision Current as a sounding board for young people, a step beyond traditional notions of interactivity. They want viewers to contribute much of the network's content now that quality video equipment is widely available.

Based on material previewed on its Web site, Current at first glance seems like a hipper, more irreverent version of traditional television newsmagazines.
DirecTV viewer can find itn on 366. That's where I'll be monitoring for a few days to see what the buzz is all about!


Bolting for Bolton

So the President has used the back door to appoint Bolton to the vacant UN post. We now have a representative at the United Nations who does NOT have the support of the Senate and luke warm support at best by the American people. Is this really the message we want to send to the International community, not that the President really cares about anything beyond the truffles on his Oval office desk. I'm just saying.

I've learned one thing from this president. If you can't get your way using the rules that everyone else has to use, then find every loophole you can to do what you want anyway. A fine example he presents to the citizens he represents

But that's just me!