Qualifications To Be Vice President

6 09 2008

As many of you know, I ran Mabel for president and then tried to create a variety of political scandals for her as she was clueless to her candidacy, and, well, she eats things she creates.

I thought her character might be attacked, so we let her go back to eating kibble and doing her pub crawl, which she did last night.

But I have to point you to Sparkles Plenty, who has outlined her reasons on why she would make a great vice-president.

Anyway, now that all that has been cleared up, I know that I am supremely qualified to be your Vice President. Here is why I expect your vote in November:

1. I know how to drive a car.
2. I can open jars all by myself.
3. I always never forget to clean out the lint filter on the dryer.
4. My favorite soup is potato.
5. I don’t spit when I talk. Usually.

Mabel endorses Kristina for V.P. enthusiastically.

Rural Tennessee Delegates In Denver

26 08 2008

R. Neal reports about the first day out in Denver at KnoxViews. This caught my eye.

Delegate Jack Cunningham of Milan is looking forward to hearing Obama talk about the economy and getting us out of the war. When asked how rural voters feel about Obama, Cunningham said “they don’t know him yet.”

If their enthusiasm is any indication, we’re sure that after the convention the Tennessee delegates will be “fired up and ready to go” talk to voters in their communities, rural and otherwise, about Sen. Obama.

First Night In Denver

26 08 2008

I’m going to take a moment to talk about last night’s speeches in Denver. I’m going to take a personal look at it as I have no doubt that the blogosphere will be filled with some admiration, some snark and some downright hostility about what happened last night.

I thought Ted Kennedy fired everyone up. My mother had a malignant brain tumor. She had trouble functioning at times so my fascination with the Lion had as much to do with the personal connection I have of having a family member ill and seeing that he looked strong and sounded fantastic. I know this is going to given a “‘Coma’s drinking the Kool-Aid again” from some of my online buddies, but I thought he did well, as did Michelle Obama, who also opened a bit of the door into her husband’s life.

I’ve often said that there are intimate things that catch people’s attention. Small, intricate details that have great meaning for one person may mean nothing to another. Every opinion, although it may disagree with mine, is of value.

I said last night on Twitter that I miss optimism although I must admit that I’m not very optimistic about politics as a whole. I want my own Camelot. I am also a realist and realize that is just a nostalgic pipe dream. I used to sit at my mother’s feet as a child listening to the stories of how smitten she was with a young president who she admired in a time of Elvis, The Beatles and putting a man on the moon.

That time is over and I am not naive.

I have decided, as I do on occasion, to avoid blogs that use words like Dimmocrats and Rethuglicans because it adds nothing to the political landscape, nor does McSame or Obamabot. It’s just my preference. I work at a job where I hear these things for a living. Every day.

When I’m home, I need a break.

I’m also taking a siesta from the ongoing political punditry on cable news channels. The spin is out of control. It’s like beating a dead horse after awhile.

So, I’m going to watch the convention. I’ll probably write about it.

I realize this is a rambling post, but I’m tired of a nation guided by a regime of fear over the past few years. I’m going with hope.

Summer Solstice – TennViews Style

22 06 2008

It’s back. R. Neal is rocking the house.

The “Summer Solstice” (Copyright (C) Associated Press, All Rights Including Yours Reserved) edition of the weekly unpredictable Tennessee progressive blog roundup with a look at what the best Tennessee bloggers are talking about.

10,000 Monkeys and a Camera: with Democrats like these, who needs Republicans?

55-40 Memphis: We could achieve more progress in the coming months than in all of the 40 years since Martin died.

Tiny Cat Pants: I’m sure “We’re still pissed about things that happened before you were born” will make a stirring campaign slogan for the Republicans this fall.

BlountViews: Swiftboating a local judge candidate

Carole Borges: Prescription drugs are becoming a menace to society and patients don’t know who to trust anymore

The Crone Speaks: We all know, that for years, Jeb is being “groomed” to follow in daddy’s footsteps. [..] Corporations, especially the oil companies, want a Bush in office.

Cup Of Joe Powell: The first rule about Congressional Elections in the 1st District is – You don’t talk about Congressional Elections in the 1st District. Plus: Rep. Davis Dodges Debate

Don Williams: …this is about electric moon spiders and giant rainbows that wade ocean waters in order to show you the whole round realness of wonder that only a vacation can provide by reminding you of who you were before you became what you do…

TNDP: Tennessee Young Dems look to capture 5,000, plus TNDP Chairman Gray Sasser: Lamar Alexander is wrong on energy

Enclave: It would be a shame if the next President was more of an advocate for programs that support Metro Nashville than our own elected representative.

Fletch: Realization

KnoxViews (Rocketsquirrel): Currently, oil and gas companies hold leases on nearly 68 million acres of federal land (both onshore and under OCS waters) that they are not developing.

Lean Left: If the President tells a company it’s legal, it’s legal.

Left of the Dial: “Staycation” is the new buzzword for the summer of 2008.

LeftWingCracker: I can see THAT now: LOOK HOW SAFE I’VE MADE SHELBY COUNTY! That’s a winner, bubba, I’d take that and really run with it if I were you. Oy. Next, other than the Baker-Alexander-Thompson tribe, who knows Gibbons outside of Big Shelby? Anyone? Anyone? Bueller? I digress.

Liberadio(!): …tonight’s 500 foot swim, which is scheduled for 5:00pm at Riverfront Park, has already served its purpose – prompting Nashvillians to start chattering about the state of the river and its environs.

Newscoma: wish just once that Tanner voted the way I wanted him to vote. Cohen just may be the only lifeline that Tennessee has for calling foul on this sort of stuff. This isn’t about warrantless wiretapping. It’s about saving corporations money.

The Pesky Fly: The real traitor here is Steny Hoyer. And Nancy Pelosi.

Progressive Nashville: …a brief overview of some of McCain’s 2007 votes on children’s issues…, plus: What does it take to get fired in Memphis?

Resonance: I was not at all surprised to see Senator McCain flip-flop with yesterday’s announcement that he now opposes the federal moratorium on offshore oil drilling. I expect more politicians to follow this path as public pressure to do something about the energy crisis builds.

RoaneViews: Here’s a “Predict the Race” spreadsheet for the Ruppe-Yager Senate race.

Russ McBee: Just like their recent obstruction of the carbon reduction bill, today’s actions show that the GOP have no intention of doing anything meaningful about our most pressing environmental and energy issues.

Sean Braisted: …I still don’t get the argument by some against immunity. There seem to be two thoughts.

Sharon Cobb: I can tell you I know first hand Obama has been in and out of Nashville visiting Al Gore during the past year, and Gore advised him, as he did other candidates.

Silence Isn’t Golden: Everyone’s buzzing about the new Quinnipiac poll numbers that show Obama not only handily winning in the swing states of Pennsylvania and Ohio, but also have him up in Florida.

Southern Beale: Isn’t that special! The four largest Western oil companies are preparing to sign no-bid contracts in Iraq, bringing them back to a position they had 36 years ago. Is that some long-range planning or what!

Tennessee Guerilla Women: What with Michelle’s dangerously feminist habit of speaking her mind, or sounding altogether too much like First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton, extreme stepford, um, I mean steps are being taken.

TennViews (Chris Lugo): Abstinence only until marriage curricula is censorship, pure and simple. Any school program that withholds scientifically valid information does not present young people with the full range of options they will actually face in life.

Vibinc: Ahh, but constituents aren’t good at Change™ either. They want to balance their household budgets while owning the biggest big screen HDTV with 4 picture in pictures and total immersion surround sound. They want rock solid abs after a mere 20 minute workout and to eat that carton of Twinkies in one sitting. It’s a startling contradiction.

WhitesCreek Journal: A message to Tennessee Democrats, “Get on the Love Train now, cause the good seats are going fast.”

Women’s Health News: Thoughts on the AMA Homebirth “Ban,” Ricki Lake, and Midwifery

BONUS ROUND: The AP v. blogger dustup – a sampling…

Enclave: At the Risk of Violating Rexblog’s Fair Use Policy

« The Crone Speaks: Ass.Press’s Desire to Re-write Fair Use

Newscoma: Connecting The Dots

Newscoma: The AP vs. Bloggers

KnoxViews: AP, bloggers, and the fair use controversy

Russ McBee : AP follows RIAA and MPAA into the gutter

The Crone Speaks: Heavy Hand of the AP

DOUBLE BONUS ROUND: The Hobbs (no not that one, the other one) controversy…

TennViews (WhitesCreek): Fred Hobbs Seems intent on destroying Lincoln Davis Gubernatorial chances

KnoxViews: Obama connected

The Pesky Fly: Just Speechless

Silence Isn’t Golden: What The Hell Is Going On Here?

LeftWingCracker: Feel Good Friday this is NOT, not today

Sean Braisted: Benefit of the Doubt

Sean Braisted: The Wheels On The Bus Go Round and Round

Silence Isn’t Golden: Here’s How It’s Done

Sean Braisted: Fred Hobbs Apologizes

Sean Braisted: Glass Houses

Sean Braisted: More on the Hobbs/Terrorist-Gate

Sean Braisted: The Commish Says Fire Hobbs

Corporate Greed

11 06 2008

Obama is currently looking for a running mate. Sharon Cobb has a comprehensive rundown at her place this morning about the pros and cons of some of the front runners.

Cobb says this may be the biggest decision he has to make and I can’t help but agree.

Although I have played armchair political pundit on this, I can’t help but think whoever he chooses is going to have to be chosen to be the best advocate for this country in the Middle East. Our economic situation, in my opinion, has so much to do with the Iraq War. We are borrowing money from China, people are doing without but we haven’t hit that moment of outrage yet but I think it will come and, of course, we’ve hit $4 a gallon so isn’t it just a matter of time before we start anticipating warily $5.

Let’s look at China. With the devastating earthquakes that have hit that country, they are going to need more fuel to rebuild. We owe them. Let’s think about that. I don’t know the answer but it’s a reality. The world needs petro not just the United States.

In a story from ABC, we get this:

Democratic Senator Claire McCaskill says their profits have quadrupled since 2002.

“Last year ExxonMobil made $83,000 a minute,” Senator McCaskill said.

“What nerve does it take for us to give oil companies $17 billion in taxpayer money with those kinds of profits?”

Of course, Senate Republicans blocked the Democrats Monday on the windfall tax for oil companies.

For every one thing we think we know, there are five hundred different things lurking in the murky waters of government. With Obama looking at a V.P to campaign with him this summer, the vice-president is very important. Whoever he chooses, I hope that that person’s interest is in the American people, our global community is not tied into corporate greed. It’s corporate greed that ultimately got us in this mess we are in right now in the first place.

Regular Joe Bob Tuke?

13 05 2008

Okay, I’m in love with this post.

A marrying kind of love that I could settle down with this post and bring it coffee every morning.

With that said, I have no idea who I’m going to vote for the Democratic nominee for Senate this year but …

Aunt B. has a point with this line:

Don’t try to gimmick me into believing that you’re some kind of regular joe.  Just be one.

I go back to this.

A Terrible Debate

17 04 2008

I watched the debate last night with several of the fine folks on Twitter. I think we all agree that this was the WORST debate ever. It got so bad, and I’ve not had the funnest week IRL, so I just wrapped up in my comforter and turned the whole thing off with Mabel looking at me curiously.

Listen, I’ve always liked Charles Gibson just fine, but ABC obviously was more interested in asking questions that had absolutely nothing to do with nothing. Ginger wrote last night several things that I agree with wholeheartedly but it was this statement that hit it on the head for me.

Her post is excellent by the way.

Let me tell you…I am a 41-year-old, educated, intelligent, and hard-working woman with good common sense.

I am in worse financial shape than I have ever been in my life. If I didn’t have faith that my God is going to see me through this life, I would be scared to death right now. I already struggle with worrying about how I’m going to provide for my daughter’s expenses when they increase as she gets older, how I’m going to get out of debt, continue to live a decent life without losing my house or not being able to fill my car with a tank of gas as the cost of living increases…

I’m not bitter…I’m outraged!

Listen Mainstream media: Voters want to know about the issues. Our government has asked a country to sacrifice and it has? What next?

What more do you want?

How is electing a president going to help people in terrible economic times? Ginger and I are the same age (well, I’m a year older) and we are going through the same experiences. I’m outraged not at the candidates today but at the elitist, out of touch media who appear to be spoon feeding voters crap. Gas is edging up to $4 bucks a gallon here and I’ve taken to carpooling to keep my budget in line as best I can. I don’t do the things I used to do because I can’t afford it. I have a large family and groceries, I don’t know, are somewhat necessary as children have to eat. What about the people, here in Tennessee, that Aunt B. wrote about last night?

Not only are we outraged, I think folks are getting nervous and a bit scared. What more is there to give?

We are in a war that has lost it’s vision if it ever had one? No one talks about Osama Bin Laden anymore. Isn’t he the reason we started this nightmare in the first place? What about people?

People? Not meaningless static.

Out of touch is what I’m seeing nationally and it just keeps getting worse. I don’t blame the candidates for that huge waste of masturbatory media time last night.

I blame anchors who have become celebrities. The audience booed Charles Gibson and rightfully so.

You want to disenfranchise voters even more?

Yeah, I’m bitter.

The Disenfranchised Voter

14 04 2008

Right now, I know who I voted for in the primary and I’m not ashamed of it. I’m sitting back looking at the different candidates’ behavior. Thus far, I am not liking what I see. I still feel I voted for the guy I wanted to win but I’m seeing some things from everyone that makes me think of the race in 2000.

I don’t like it. Not one bit.

First out, John McCain. He gets information on global policy wrong sometimes. Here’s what bugs me: we have a president that does that now. Whoever is our next president needs to know about the different cultures all residing in Iraq and their different philosophies especially when you are in their country when you are on a political junket. We’ve buried four soldiers here in Hoots. Singing “Bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb” to the tune of Barbara Ann did not endear me to him nor did it to others I’ve spoken to. I used to, before the Savings and Loans fiasco, though McCain was a moderate. I can’t help but wonder what deal he made with Bush and Co. back in 2004 because I think he did. He was one of their harshest critics and then they are doing a group hug? We don’t need Bush Lite in office in November. I think he’s smarter than Bush. Of course, Cheney is the president and likes money so I digress. We have MORE government from a party that promised us LESS government.

Remember that political spin?

Second out, Barack Obama. I didn’t see anything wrong with him talking about bitter, disenfranchised voters in Pennsylvania. His comments, although not the most well-thought out when spoken, does hit on a very crucial element about people are hanging on to the familiar because they are tired of struggling. Regardless of what one might thing, we live in hard times. Hell, Bill Clinton did a version of it himself back in 1992 and you didn’t see people going ape-poo. Let’s take rural voters from my neck of the woods for an example. I can beg, plead, cajole and talk about what a wonderful thing it is to vote and they don’t. Our last few elections, state, national and local have seen less than 25 percent of registered voters hitting the polls. People are bitter about government and disenfranchised by hearing words that aren’t backed up by actions. What I don’t like that Obama has done, and I’m trying to be fair about it, is that sometimes he backtracks. Here’s the thing, just own it Senator which you do sometimes and don’t others. I believe faith is important and it goes without saying that many people tie in their faith with the way they vote. But it seems that, once again, faith (an important personal issue for so many Americans) is being used as a political weapon. I was raised Presbyterian and I understand the importance of feeling connected. My dad was Church of Christ growing up (imagine my confusion with those two denominations mixed in the bag.) But, you know, it just seems disingenuous at times when it’s brought out conveniently for a speech or a jab. I have a friend who is a Buddhist. I don’t see them talking about that. Obama is going to have to take the heat and he would make me a happy camper if he starts talking about those changes again he mentioned a few months ago. Focus on the long-term goals of the party, just don’t change the party’s mission for the sake of the win.

On to Hillary Clinton, to my dear friends who support her, I respect your commitment to her, but I don’t like the way she’s running her race. There, I said it. She pounces on Obama when I think she needs to be pouncing on McCain. She may have expected an easy race, but in the long run, she didn’t get it. Right now, what I’m hearing is give McCain a shot if I can’t have it so I can have it in 2012. I know she isn’t saying that but it’s the vibe I’m getting. I think Clinton’s policies are basically the same as Obama’s. I think she is a savvy and clever woman, but if anyone is utilizing the tired Rovian playbook, it’s Clinton. Don’t get me wrong, it okay to be critical and I don’t think she’s a bad person I just think she wants to get the win more than anything. And at this point, I’m thinking she just might.I said months ago if she won, I’d happily vote for her before all this crap started. Now, I will begrudgingly vote for her if this kind of behavior continues. She spoke of change too. I’m ready to see it. Ms. Clinton, make me believe. I could care less if you shot a duck and had a shot of whiskey with the boys. I want to know if you can fix the economic mess in this country. Remember, people voted for Bush because he was “the guy they wanted to have a beer with.” Clinton’s policies are sound. Obama’s are similar. Let’s talk about the issues, not pulling phrases out and bashing the hell out of him.

And, as my head is filled with many things this morning other than just politics, we had to have a forum on COMPASSION?

Jeez, I thought that was ingrained in us. Golden Rule stuff. Treat others they way you want to be treated. Candidates, you don’t want to see people losing their jobs or eating six-packs of chicken ramen noodles because that’s all they can afford, then start talking about ways to stop this nonsense.

The news cycle in this race is short. We have new media bombarding us with information so quickly it’s hard to keep up. It’s time for our candidates to keep up to.

Most of the folks I know here in rural west Tennessee are second amendment, blue dog Democrats. (I know, I’m largely in the minority. Guns and church are a way of life here. I don’t participate in either one but I have no problem with it, quite frankly, which may put me on the list of some liberals.) They vote too (and sometimes Republican nationally, but I have a feeling they aren’t buying any of it. We are smarter than you guys stereotype us to be.

Start remembering you are campaigning for votes from average people. I think the Superdelegates are eating just fine and aren’t rolling pennies to put gas in their cars

I said this before and I will say it again, it’s too fuzzy.

What Russ McBee Said …

12 04 2008

What Russ said:

Although his words may have been chosen inelegantly, he was nevertheless absolutely correct. People whose lives have been upended by the loss of good-paying jobs crave some kind of anchoring principle to make it all make sense; they seek any enduring truth or absolute that can give them focus and clarity. History is filled with examples of populations turning to religious fundamentalism and/or nativist chauvinism in times of turmoil. The temptation to rationalize a complex situation (such as the destruction of America’s manufacturing industry) with simple answers is an ordinary human trait, and it’s no great mystery. It is also nowhere close to “elitist” to acknowledge the fact that people whose jobs have been shuffled off to Mexico or China will be left behind wondering why, and they’ll be looking for something solid in their lives to give meaning and context to such an upheaval. Fundamentalist religion, nativism, xenophobia, and anything else that promises to simplify one’s understanding of the problem is a strong attractor for those facing uncertainty.

And there’s more.

Meeting Mike Padgett

8 04 2008

I met Mike Padgett yesterday. Padgett is facing off against Bob Tuke for the democratic nomination for the U.S. Senate.

Winner faces Lamar Alexander.

In West Tennessee, Padgett has been making the rounds meeting folks, shaking hands and doing something I found to be quite surprising. He was actually listening to some people. Apparently he made the rounds with some of the local newspapers as well as stopping and talking to some local farmers. Talking to farmers, in my opinion, was a smart move and here’s why.

The recent rains have been amazingly horrible for local farmers. Right now, local agriculture is two weeks off track in planting seed for this year’s crops and even some of the seed is being given to farmers sparingly, which I will get to in a later post. Fields here have taken on lake-like qualities. If the weather report is accurate for later this week (insert weatherman-never-getting-it-right joke here), we are looking at additional severe weather tonight and tomorrow with precipitation possibly leaving us some more of the wet stuff. This could put planting crops back another week or so. This is a reality.

Here’s what I liked about what Padgett had to say: He was talking about rural economic development and being that I live in rural America, some of what he was saying made sense. We talked about the lack of respect that rural voters sometimes got and he asked asked questions about our manufacturing situation. (I’ve mentioned before that we’ve lost several plants in the past eight years.) During this discussion, we talked about our local census numbers going down as people are living this area.

He also talked about our debt to China. He likened it to credit card companies citing “eventually they and other countries are going to give us a call telling us it’s time to start paying our bills just like credit card companies do.” That made sense to me as I cannot for the life of me understand why we are borrowing so much money.

On the war, he said he wouldn’t finance building roads in Iraq or Afghanistan when we need roads and money here. He said he didn’t know how long we were going to be over there (and expressed he didn’t think we needed to be over there in the first place) but said the troops had to be taken care of. (I agree.) He also doesn’t support a time-table for bringing troops home. His main thrust was regarding that money spent in the Middle East was not being spent on the domestic front. He didn’t seem to be too fond of Dick Cheney.

He asked me to tell him what I thought about our area, and I did. My main thing, and I said this to him, was that right now voters are less concerned about the election in my little slice of the world (I used the Jeremiah Wright incident as an example. Padgett is on Hillary Clinton’s Steering Committee, if you were wondering) and more concerned about how much gas costs and how they were going to feed their children. We live in a community where the median income per household is roughly $31,000 a year. Food and gas costs rising so drastically in the past three years has created a strain. We talked about how these factors were annihilating the local quality of life and because of huge loss of jobs in the area, that people were leaving to find better paying jobs.

Another thing I liked was that he said he refused to say anything negative about Bob Tuke. I haven’t seen Tuke yet although he did go to Mule Day as did Padgett and Alexander. Let me explain something to you, these festivals in small towns are hubs for politicking. You will always find a ton of folks seeking office at these events. I’m sure he’ll be around soon. Another thing that Padgett did right in our brief time together was focus on rural lifestyles and how rural voters are disenfranchised by the entire process of electing leaders right now. It’s a good point. He seemed to have done some homework.

Good for him. Not all of them do, I assure you.

What he did say about Lamar Alexander is that in the first two years in the Senate, he voted with the White House 97 percent of the time. He mentioned that Lamar had gotten better lately. It was at 93 percent now. (He managed to smile a bit when he said this.)

What I don’t like is his website. There really isn’t enough information about where he stands on the issues but when you meet him face-to-face, he seems to be very clear about where he stands. Someone needs to make sure his website is more user friendly and addresses the issues more directly because the site is, at this point, a throw away political site with little weight to it. Bob Tuke’s website actually has a page of issues. I suggest that Padgett’s people do the same as it important in this day of new media. I see more voters researching specific issues and when you live in rural America, where better to do that than online.

He also has Blue Solutions running his campaign. They recently ran Lowe Finney’s campaign for Senate successfully.

If Padgett is going to areas and meeting with people, not just news people, but farmers and average citizens, I think he will do better than people expect him to do. He didn’t have the mannerisms of a Nashville insider, something Tuke has been accused of in inner circles, and that may help him. He has, from what I can see here in northwest Tennessee, very little name recognition and that could hurt him a bit but by taking to the streets, that might help. Tuke doesn’t have name recognition over here either. Just saying. I had several people ask me late yesterday who both of these guys were. Always an issue.

They do, however, know Lamar’s name.

Can he get people to vote for him instead of Lamar, who is familiar and popular even with Tennessee Democrats? I don’t know however I noticed when he was meeting people he addressed that. He asked people to go to his website, remember his name and although he asked for at least five people’s votes that I saw, he said “Don’t make your decision now. Just learn about me and where I stand.”

“Stand With me” seems to be his logo. It’s even on his site.

Let’s take a look at Padgett’s background. He won several terms for Knox County Clerk before he left office when term limits were upheld. He opened locations around Knoxville for those people not working traditional schedules to get their tags and what not, even putting one in a mall (or at least this is what he told me.) On the down low, Padgett did have a bit of controversy a couple of years back according to a Katie Allison Granju story regarding hiring his son’s company to handle online transactions.

So that was my meeting with Padgett. I suggested, as he’s staying in Nashville right now to be centrally located across the state, if he wanted a meet up with Nashville bloggers. He agreed. I’ll get the details worked out on that and we will see if it comes to fruition. And I know the Memphis guys would like to meet him as well. Being that he’s on the other side of the state, meeting up with folks is important.

This is, by no means, an endorsement of any kind. Just letting you know what I witnessed.

Bill Clinton Says “Chill Out”

17 03 2008

Bill Clinton, in an exclusive interview with Robin Roberts, said he thinks Democrats are torn between two candidates they like, and that it’s time to “chill out” and let the voters decide who should be the party’s presidential nominee.

“The voters get to decide. I think we should just celebrate this,” Clinton said. “If we just chill out here and let all the voters have their say, my gut is it’s gonna come out all right.”

The former president will be on GMA this morning and this is apparently what he talked to Robin Roberts about.

With that said, if the candidates for the Democratic nomination don’t “chill” it may come back and bite them.

Jack Cafferty has a post up and the comments are interesting in a related story.

Throw The Karl Rove Handbook Away

13 03 2008

I can’t tell you what to do or how to think. I’m not going to do that because that wouldn’t be cool. I’m not going to tell you how to vote, because that would be disingenuous. I have my opinions, you have yours and we can all keep it friendly.

We can all agree to disagree or at least I hope we can.

I am going to say that my fellow progressives need to chill. We are not oppressing women if we support Barack Obama. We are not oppressing African-Americans if we support Hillary Clinton. We are on the same team and yet we are acting like we aren’t.

I can also say that Karl Rove is not the guy we need to be taking tips from. Yeah, I know he got folks elected and I am not naive enough to believe that the ultimate prize is to win but then again I think we’ve lost the mission of the left with all the static. Throw his playbook away, campers, immediately.

And that’s what it is: static. Let’s not get caught up in it.

In 2000, we saw some very suspicious things happen in our government (and I realize there are always suspicious things happening in our government from both sides of the aisle so let’s not get hung up on that. Bear with me, we are taking a journey in this post so hear me out.)

We saw the national media bow down after 9/11 and not asking the right questions to our leaders in this country. We saw the national media start to come out of the fog after Hurricane Katrina.

And we have had a campaign that started in 2005 give everyone such Primary Election Fatigue that I’m surprised I can still sit upright.

The thing that bothers me about the last few weeks is that we have forgotten some basic things. The whole Geraldine Ferraro thing is a perfect example. The controversy hit on the day of the Mississippi primary. There seems to be a lot of maneuvering here because it seems this keeps happening to sway what is said during that news cycle. Mack wrote about this last week and in so many ways, he’s right.

He wrote:

I am prepared to work hard for either candidate. When I talk to uncommitted people, especially bloggers, I am well positioned to make my case for Hillary Clinton, even though I have publicly stated I voted for Obama in the primary. The reason I can do this is because you will find nothing disparaging about either candidate on this blog. I had a choice to make, and I did so, and stated my reasons for it. I have a preference, thats it.

There is a great deal at stake in the General Election, so a win is extremely important to me as a citizen. As a person, how we win is of more importance. I truly believe our country is poised to rally behind not just change, but real leadership that includes keeping citizens informed of what is at stake, without exaggeration or misrepresentation. Even the media will come around.

That pretty much sums it up for me.

The whole “Obama is a Muslim” and “Clinton is a monster” is tiring and silly. I will give Clinton credit for saying this morning that both campaigns are sensitive to the race/sex edge that is playing out because nothing could be more true. To give credit to Obama, the most he said about Ferraro’s comments was that is was “ridiculous.”

And for whatever reason, I’m hoping that this and some of the other goofy-assed crap that has happened on the national stage will stop.

Can we please just calm down?

With that said, I want to know how I can get better health-care. I want to know about civil liberties. I want my president to read the constitution and not call “it a godd***ed piece of paper“.

When a president leads our country, he/she represents all of this country and that’s been my issue with the last eight years quite frankly. The world doesn’t look at race or sex as an issue when they are talking international politics and the United States’ role in a global community.

We are all in this together, my friends. And in Denver, we will all stand together no matter who the candidate is.

As no one reads political blogs or posts much anyway, here is a picture of a mongoose to keep it real.

UPDATE: A comment thread at Music City Bloggers disputed Bush saying the GD comment. In being fair, I wanted to note that.

Tennessee Rural Health Act

10 03 2008

TENNESSEE RURAL HEALTH ACT: SB4099, sponsored  by Sen. John Wilder, D-Mason, Sen. Roy Herron, D-Dresden, and Sen. Steve Roller, D-Morrison, creates a loan-forgiveness program for Tennessee students studying to become designated types of health care professionals that agree to practice in rural and other underserved areas across the state. Students that enter the program will agree to practice medicine in a “health resource shortage area” for one year for each year of educational funding provided by the program. Recipients will be required to repay all funds received under the program if they fail to practice medicine in a health resource shortage area for the full time required. Health resource shortage areas are designated as such by the Tennessee Department of Health’s Office of Rural Health.


Something we are watching.

I’m just saying.

From an email from the Tennessee Senate Democrats.


Barack Obama Gets Rolling Stone Endorsement

9 03 2008
He got Rolling Stone’s endorsement. I can’t help but wonder if it will make a difference in the long run, but it’s still kinda cool.
I can remember reading Hunter S. Thompson when I was a kid and thinking there was a much bigger world out yonder.
How many times do you type the word “yonder?” Yeah, hush.

Who’s Gonna Win The Primary? Oh, And Put Busy Mom In Jail

4 03 2008

I have no idea.

I’m waiting. Aren’t you?

While you are waiting, have a Goo Goo and wait for the polls. OR, you can put Busy Mom in jail. You know, this is awesome. (Homer’s favorite blogger. Yeah, put her in jail. Damn you, Homer.)

Help her out. It is, of course, of the good.

It could be another six weeks of primary ugly. Or not. And, you know, put Busy Mom in jail.

It is of the fun. She needs some do-re-mi for a good cause.



Keep On Rockin’ In The Free World

2 03 2008


Now, on to Tennviews and R. Neal’s Sunday liberal extravaganza.

The Sunday “oh, no he didn’t? or, it’s been an extra long leap week for the TN GOP” edition of the TennViews weekly blog roundup showcasing the best and brightest bloggers in Tennessee and what they are talking about…• 55-40 Memphis: Second biggest fear, plus: Beale Street tribute hits a sour note.• Andy Axel (at KnoxViews): TNGOP playing politics with the State Constitution,• Aunt B.: On the TNGOP attempt to establish guilt by association, plus leave Bill Hobbs alone!

• BlountViews: How embarrassing would it be to be a member of the TNGOP right now?

• Carole Borges: Obama’s formula for success: radical centrism.

• The Crone Speaks: On the failure of the abortion amendment, plus the TNGOP apparently never got the Karl Rove memo, and, notes to Clinton and Obama from candidates who dropped out.

• Cup of Joe Powell: On the Bill Hobbs implosion, plus cheers for the TNGOP, bonus: Vampires!

• Don Williams: Help fight mountaintop removal.

• The Donkey’s Mouth: TNGOP: Gutter politics, McCain denounces, scolded by RNC.

• Enclave: Gathering the NAFTA pitchforks, plus TNGOP: Leave Obama’s momma out of it, part 1 and part 2.

• Fletch: Cute by any other name, what do you see, and barking at the moon is a full time job.

• KnoxViews: Where in the world is Smokey? Plus: respect for Hillary, and who will answer the call?

• Lean Left: KTK: Obama comes out for gay rights and a weight is lifted

• Left of the Dial: Money fuels the debate over XM/SIRIUS merger

• Left Wing Cracker: RIP Rep. Gary Rowe, plus Hobbs has outdone himself.

• Liberadio: 2008 election results leaked, plus a little desensitizing.

• Loose TN Canon: Hobbs deleted my comments!

• NewsComa: Hobbs wins the Tennessee Wanker award and it’s only February!

• Pesky Fly: Obama brings out the knives.

• Progressive Nashville: Something in the Arizona water? Plus: TNGOP thinks cheap stunts are acceptable behavior.

• Resonance: Superdelegates jumping between bandwagons, plus slacker Silent Clarence.

• RoaneViews: Chris Lugo: Nuclear free Tennessee, plus: When a potential business recruit comes to Roane County, does Leslie show them the new Jail?

• Russ McBee: Bernake predicts bank failures, plus a note to Bill Hobbs.

• Sean Braisted: Celebrity endorsements. Plus: Save Bill Hobbs!

• Sharon Cobb: Tennessee medical hero Stan Brock on 60 Minutes tonight, here’s a backgrounder. Plus: Elect Hussein Obama!

• Silence Isn’t Golden: Bigots for McCain, Republicans should show the same support for Tennessee that they do for Israel, natural allies in the fight against discrimination and justice. Bonus: Fulmer for Sheriff!

• Southern Beale: Prison Nation, fun with FISA.

• Tennessee Guerilla Women: Hillary tag teamed on SNL, plus some interesting quotes from Obama re. the Iraq war vote.

• TennViews: TNGOP playing politics with long-term care for seniors , plus TNGOP: There is such a thing as bad publicity, Gutterball, as it unfolded.

• Vibinc: Motivational waterboarding? Seriously, he’s not making this up!

• Whites Creek Journal: Surviving Leap Day, plus: Obama fathered TWO black babies!

• Women’s Health News: Workplace lactation, plus the Nipple Project.

‘Cause we are all in this together.

Feb.9th Caucuses And Primaries

9 02 2008

Left Wing Cracker is the king of staying on top of things when it comes to the democratic party. He really is. He sent me this yesterday and I thought it was really well done so I thought I’d share it as a primer, if you will, on what is at stake this weekend for the presidential election.

From Open Left:

  • Washington caucuses, February 9th. Starts at 4 p.m. eastern: Obama 53%–40% Clinton. Survey USA, 2.2-2/3. 78 pledged delegates are up for grabs, and both candidates are on the air and campaigning on the ground in Washington. With a caucus and a double-digit lead in the polls, Obama is heavily favored here.
  • Louisiana primary, February 9th. Polls close at 9 p.m. eastern: No polls to report, ever. What polls there are wouldn’t be of any use anyway, as we saw in the primary challenge against William Jefferson in late 2006. I can report that there are 56 pledged delegates at stake, and that Jesse Jackson won here in 1988. Both candidates are campaigning on the ground and over the airwaves. Obama is once again favored. Polls close at 9 p.m. eastern.
  • Nebraska caucuses, February 9th, ends at 9:30 p.m.: Once again, no polls to report, ever. We will probably see results trickling in from Nebraska all day tomorrow, since the caucuses start as early as 11:00 a.m. eastern in some places, and end as late as 9:30 p.m. in others. Obama has dominated caucuses in Alaska, Colorado, Idaho, Kansas, Minnesota and North Dakota. He also won a little caucus that was held in Iowa five weeks ago. This is big time Obama territory, and Clinton is not even visiting the state. I expect another 2-1 Obama victory in pledged caucus delegates from here.
  • Virgin Islands, convention, February 9th: Beats me how the three pledged delegates will break. Expect either 2-1 Obama or 2-1 Clinton. Then again, as telephasic points out in the comments, it will probably  go 2-1 Obama, given that the island is 76% African-American.
  • Maine caucuses, February 10th, starts as early as 1 p.m. eastern: There hasn’t poll a from here since April, when Clinton led 39%-22%. Of course, Clinton led everywhere back then, so who knows. No clear favorite, with 24 pledged delegates at stake. This is probably Clinton’s best chance for a win this week.

Chris Bowers breaks it down quite nicely about what’s happening today and tomorrow. With that said, one thing I’m hearing on the streets in my village is the discussion of delegates vs. superdelegates. I’m actually pleased about this because I can’t remember this being discussed so fervently in the past as it has been this year.

And, a Nashville blogger is running for delegate status so if you are so inclined, head here.

The Rural Factor

23 12 2007

I’ve been looking at quite a few websites over the last few days about where presidential candidates stand for rural citizens.

Many times, I will comment in my usual whimsical ways about (snark) about the different aspects of what a candidate is doing or that George Bush picked up a book and the world was genuinely surprised until he had to give it to Laura to read because he didn’t know what the word “pony” meant or whatever. You know the drill here at Casa Coma.

But, the thing that is really hurting our area is that we need industry. We need better broadband access (Thanks Maddox and Herron on that one), We need jobs terribly. I think because we live in a college environment, we do have some opportunities that some other rural communities don’t have and for that I’m grateful.

But which candidates are going to be actively advocating for the rural vote. Right now, it’s aggressively been sought in Iowa by John Edwards, who did make a visit after an internet contest back a few months ago to Clinton, Ky. There were thousands who attended and he did show up but, quite frankly, it was a Public Relations spin and we all knew that even at the time.

I’m eager as a rural citizen to see what is going to happen on a couple of levels. I read some where, and I can’t find it so I offer my apologies ahead of time, that the Democrats need someone who is like Mike Huckabee.

I’m not talking about his issues, I’m talking about how he has made a connection with some of his party and effectively pissed off the other side, but he sticks to it although I disagree with that philosophy completely. I think Edwards might be able to make that sort of connection that Huckabee has on the right but he is going to have to have a philosophy and stick to it. Huckabee is interesting to me as a progressive. He has a mission statement, he sticks to it and I love that he at least has a sense of humor but he isn’t who I want in Washington in 2009.

Edwards does make personal connections as well when he visited the area, but he hasn’t seemed to found his voice and this is his second chance. Everyone who has ever met him talks about his charm and that when you hear him, he sorta speaks to you not around you, but this whole mandating health insurance thing isn’t going to work for me. Hell, I have health insurance that sucks big-time, but I have it. If I didn’t need it, I would be freelancing full-time (and probably making more moolah than I do now), but the insurance keeps me where I’m at until I can find another place with, you guessed it, health insurance. Homer tells of a friend of hers who is working (she’d rather be home with her kids) specifically to have health insurance for her family. She brings home $40 bucks a month (Not a week, a month) after she paid. The money is going for insurance.

This isn’t uncommon. I can’t fly with that.  That’s, of course not a rural thing, but a people thing.

The rural thing, for me at least, is about industry. It’s about opportunities. It’s about that manufacturing jobs are leaving and have been for years. Off the top of my head, I can think of seven plants in my area that have closed recently. I can also tell you that the population of my county as of earlier this year has been reduced by about 3500 residents. And with that, the smaller businesses suffer.

So, there are no real answers I guess. Which presidential candidate is going to take care of the areas that don’t have voters in the hundreds of thousands? Something like 22 percent of roughly 19,000 people voted in this county in the last couple of elections.


Because they didn’t feel their vote mattered.

And, quite honestly, with the way 2000 and 2004 went, does it?

I’ll vote until my fingers bleed, believe me. I just wish I could fall in line with a candidate that I liked, that spoke for me. And, yes, I would have actively campaigned for Al Gore again.

This time, I’m thinking of electability and I think that’s the first time I have done that. I just don’t know who that person is yet.

Savage Ramblings Of The Political Season

11 12 2007

Fa-La-La, uhh-hum.

I haven’t really been inclined to get my politics on this week, as I have been having dreams of pizza-eating kangaroos and dealing with the folly and jolly of Christmas.

You see, I’m watching it but I’m sort of “Feh” about it all.

Things I’ve had my eye on this weekend are certainly entertaining, but I’m not so sure that I was in the mood to sit and write a whole montage about it, but I do invite you to go see some of the highlights of the political week. My ADD is just not feeling it.

Yeah, it’s Tuesday.  (Look a penguin.)

First out of the gate, watch Lawrence O’Donnell lose his mind over Mitt Romney on the McClaughlin Group’s weekend show. Also watch Pat Buchanan and Monica Crowley’s heads start spinning. It’s more about political entertainment than anything else, but needless to say, McDonnell doesn’t like Mormons. I offer it to you without further comment.

Surge. Man, our government and mainstream media love that word. Well, Mike Huckabee might be surging, but he still isn’t going to win the presidency at this point. Let’s talk about Ron Paul for no other reason than it keeps my attention.

The story of Michael Guest.

This has always happened. Candidates want information on their opposition. Yet, it’s a story on Drudge and the New York Times which still makes me scratch my head but it’s the way of the new world so I concede, who is also under fire for some things as well.

And, finally, I’m with Pesky here and feeling something would be more than groovy. I still have no idea, but I know who I don’t like. I wish I was more passionate about a candidate for president, but alas, I’m not.

The Cocktail Mentality Of The Presidential Race

28 11 2007

I was looking at my last post and realized that it didn’t make as much sense as I would have liked for it to, so in my MethBenedryl haze, I wrote some more to Cathy’s comment and yet I still wasn’t satisfied with what I was trying to say.

Then, of course, I went to sleep at 7 p.m. which could be the reason why I’m awake now, at 4 a.m.

Everything is connected.

Anyhoo, here’s the reason I think this is a bad idea. Listen, endorsements from celebrities happen all the time. Mike Huckabee has Chuck Norris and Nature Boy, Fred Thompson probably has a slew of folks, etc., Clinton has Spielberg (who most likely won’t say a thing.)

Barbara Streisand reminds me a lot of Hillary Clinton. I’m afraid they both are polarizing figures when you get right down to it although I did hear Goldnl in her post other day about her strengths but I’m just not sold yet. Now, and this is from friend of a friend, who says that someone formerly from Hooterville went to the big Barack Obama and Oprah fundraiser a couple of months ago (this woman no longer lives here). Big fan of them both, I might add. With that said, she said the fundraiser wasn’t about Obama but about Oprah. And, ironically, this woman was disappointed by this although that was one woman’s opinion. But I’ve been thinking about it.

Now, with that said, I saw this at Dork Nation this morning:

It is likely that Winfrey helps Obama by bringing out the dead. People who might not ordinarily have gone to stand in the cold and listen to a political speech on a barnstorming tour may well come out for Oprah (especially if they think there’s a chance they’ll find some Oprah gift under their seats). This can only help Obama, whose been suffering from lacking the immediate name recognition of Sen. Clinton.

And, of course, he’s right. Oprah Winfrey is, regardless of what I said above, not a divider but more of a uniter sort of figure. In the endorsements of the divas, Obama wins hands down, because as Mark says later in his post, people are tired of Barbara.
Oprah has also never done this before where Babs has. And Oprah literally “owns” television. Her show is amazing in that it has lived as long as it has and continues to stay strong.

The presidential race has become a cocktail party and, right now, the person using celebrity fascination the best, well, thus far the guy speaking to folks around here anyway, is most likely Mike Huckabee because the Chuck Norris thing made them laugh, they dig wrestling and he seems like a moderate conservative.

Which we know he isn’t or at least that’s what Rolling Stone is reporting:

He believes the Earth may be only 6,000 years old, angrily rejects the evidence that human beings evolved from “primates” and thinks America wouldn’t need so much Mexican labor if we allowed every aborted ­fetus to grow up and enter the workforce.

Can you say Yikes!

Yup, they like Chuck Norris. Ding, ding, there’s a vote. Now who is this Huckabee guy?

For me to wish that people would vote on the issues is a pipedream, I get that. But I do. But the days of spin has always been around elections. It is what it is.

Is this the only way to get people out to vote?

In this case, I’m wondering who Britney Spears is supporting as she gets the most air-time on news programs than anyone.

Wait, last time, it was Bush.

Never mind.