Thursday, November 30, 2006

It Is Important To Remember

It is important to remember the vision some hold for our country.

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion ~Amendment I, U.S. Constitution.

Dennis Prager commenting on newly elected congressman Keith Ellison's, a Muslim, wish to take his oath of office using The Koran.

Forgive me, but America should not give a hoot what Keith Ellison's favorite book is. Insofar as a member of Congress taking an oath to serve America and uphold its values is concerned, America is interested in only one book, the Bible. If you are incapable of taking an oath on that book, don't serve in Congress.

A six year old's "favorite" book is Sponge Bob's Big Adventure. A holy book for more than a billion people is a little more than that.

Never forget the goals of certain people. Never let their agenda hide in dark corners. Expose it for the world to see. It is the only way to eradicate the mold that grows under some rocks.

Commercial Blogging Southern Style

Seen outside the FSU-UF game.

Yep. That's the back window of a jacked up 4x4. You gotta know your audience.

Breaking News: Study Group Recommends Withdrawal

Jim Baker's much touted Iraq Study Group is recommending a phased withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq.

The bipartisan group reached a consensus on Wednesday on a final report that will call for a gradual pullback of the 15 American combat brigades now in Iraq but stop short of setting a firm timetable for their withdrawal, according to people familiar with the panel’s deliberations.

The position is alledgedly supported unanimously by the bi-partisan panel. So what does this mean?

The only people left who oppose some form of redeployment inhabit the airwaves of AM radio, Wingnutdaily and oh yeah, the Oval Office.

Mr. President. You now have the needed political cover. Start the process of common sense strategic re-alignment. Now.

UPDATE: As Grayson pointed out in the comments, Andisheh Nouree, a beautiful woman possibly of middle Eastern descent, wrote on the subject last week. Ms. Nouree is as succint as she is lovely.

Forget Iowa

Every real candidate knows Florida is where you have to win. (I can almost feel the rush of hate mail from Ohio)

Wes Clark is taking the theory to heart by raisinig funds for Christine Jennings election challenge in the Florida 13th.

Trust me. In 2008, Florida Democrats will remember.

Can't Possibly Be True Files

A judge has ordered the Treasury Department to make money in different sizes to accommodate blind people.

If you follow the link, you will see a commentor points out blind people already have this figured out.

I hate the term "activist judges" but...

Songs In My Head

Touch Of Grey

Grateful Dead

I'm Very Sad

I was missing in action for 24 hours, last reported somewhere south of Cordele, Dick Cheney was in Thomasville and none of you were concerned.

For the record. I'm unscathed.


Tuesday, November 28, 2006

We Usually Save This Stuff Til Christmas

Holy Christ! I go out of town for a few days and we start shooting 92 year old ladies?

Blog round up:

Doug Monroe - It's the war on drugs. Yep. That one seems spot on.

Jason Pye - No knock warrants are an abomination. Couldn't agree more.

Grayson - It's all Reefer Madness and Media Whores. Yep.

Thanksgiving: The Scorecard

I'm back. Sort of. Back at the library. Regular blogging will return sometime tomorrow.

In the meantime, here is how I scored my own Thanksgiving:

griftdrift vs. traffic: The new Eagles Landing interchange should be blowed up. Grade: B-

griftdrift vs. doves - 4 doves / 2 boxes of shells. Grade: D

griftdrift vs the deer - 0 deer / 1 new stand. Grade: D-

griftdrift vs the turkey - Smoked turkey equal delicious. Waistline equal larger. Grade: B-

griftdrift vs the internet jones - Only checked internet via phone once per day. Grade: A-

griftdrift vs the family - No one was shot. Grade: A+

How was your holiday?

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Home For The Holidays

Headed south. Blogging will be light until next monday. Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Robert Altman Passes

AP is reporting director Robert Altman has died. A legend passes.

Edward Copeland has a tribute.

National Drunk Blogging Day

"...because there's a day for every single thing else."

The date has been set! December 29th is National Drunk Blogging Day. A day of much fun and stupidity for bloggers and readers everywhere.

I'm in. So is Amber. Come on people! Atlanta is a party town! Let's show our technicolor yawn!


From Elenanor Clift.

If Hillary were elected and re-elected president, it would mean the presence of a Bush or a Clinton on every ticket from 1980 to 2016—36 years

Since 1775, Americans have had a distaste for monarchs. They practically vomit at the idea of dynasties. It's simplistic but compelling.

Monday, November 20, 2006

An Honest Politician

When politicians switch parties, you usually see a moment of pure political honesty. It's rare, so even if you find it disgusting, you have to recognize.

State Rep. Will Kendrick, a veteran lawmaker from the Gulf Coast town of Carrabelle in the Panhandle, said he switched to the GOP in part because he thought he would have more success in winning state funding for hometown projects as a member of the majority party

Any time one of these trolls switch, if they begin blathering about their party leaving them or the need to be intellectually / morally honest, please pause and then cough *bs* under your breath.

So at least give Senator Kendrick credit for true honesty. It's something. Right?

Still Believe The Market Doesn't Work?

Well, it's only one example but it's a good one.

Fox has cancelled the O.J. Simpson interview.

Good for them. A great example of what civil libertarians have been advocating for years. If the people don't want it, the knuckleheads won't produce it. Even the knuckleheads at Fox.

So now about the F.C.C.....

Head Scratcher

Dekalb CEO Vernon Jones and K-Fed, yes THAT K-Fed, at a Hawks game.
Photo courtesy of the AJC


I just had to screen shot this. Just a few moments ago, this was the entry on Wikipedia for Wikipedia. If you can't read the small type it says, "Wikipedia is an unreliable web based encyclopedia which only an idiot would accept as a legitimate reference". The degree of disagreement over the relative value of Wikipedia always surprises me. I do frequently rely on it as a tool. However, I do follow a Reaganesque trust but verify policy.

Even Kissinger Doesn't See Victory

After spending the early 70s proping up Nixon's hopeless continutation in Vietnam, Kissinger crawled zombie-like into the new century to prop up Bush's hopeless continuation of the Iraq mess. Well, even this ardent supporter of "stay the course" nows admits there is no possibility of victory.

If you mean by 'military victory' an Iraqi government that can be established and whose writ runs across the whole country, that gets the civil war under control and sectarian violence under control in a time period that the political processes of the democracies will support, I don't believe that is possible.

A staggering admission. Bush's Mid-East laboratory for Jeffesonian Democracy is toast. Some of us knew that a while ago. Good to see even the hawks haven't completely abandoned sense.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

More Maverick McCain

First it was the gays.

Now it's the wimmins.


Saturday, November 18, 2006

Colbert in Tallahassee

At the FSU PowWow.

As he led the crowd in the Tomahawk Chop: "It's not for me to tell you how to do
your racist chant....I wish there was a wagon train we could burn down."


Songs In My Head

When You Come Back Down

Nickel Creek

Friday, November 17, 2006

Good Gracious It's Friday!

Not much going on but you can listen to the Spacey Gracey Review on operatic poon tang

In the meantime, I'm headed out soon to meet the drunk hillibillies.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Advocate For The Devil

Is Murtha's defeat a blow to Nancy Pelosi?

No, it isn't.

The talking heads and blogs are afire with Nancy's first "mistake". It was inevitable that she would support Murtha for Majority Leader. It is my belief she didn't want him to win.

There are times when you have to pull back the onion a bit. These are politicans after all and they did not achieve their position without a bit of savvy and a touch of underhandedness.

Public support of Murtha allowed Pelosi to throw a sop to the anti-war left in the party. Despite all the gobbledegook in the days following, the election was about the war. To not give Murtha a chance would have inflamed the wing of the party that rightly should be given some measure of credit in the success.

Pelosi also knows that Murtha is damaged goods. If it was only his stance on Iraq, she could have possibly sheperded him through the process. But the ghost of ABSCAM and a predilection for earmarks made this impossible. Secondary to Iraq, the election was about corruption. The whirlwind of Jack Abramoff and Mark Foley swept up at least 15 Republican house races. The last thing the new Democractic leadership wants is a whiff of taint in their halls of power.

My belief is while tepidly supporting Murtha in public, Speaker presumptive Pelosi used back channels to scuttle his chances. Hoyer is in line for the position and securing the blue dogs shores up her caucus. With his election both the blue dogs and the netroots stay in line. This is what leaders do. Play every slice of the pie to keep the whole.

Pelosi will take some minor hits for the "loss" but the memory of this moment will be dulled when the real action begins in January.

I Got Nothing Today

Pelosi elected. Hoyer elected. blah blah blah

Go here and visit Bicycle Pants Man.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Seeing George

So I'm watching the friendly between Brazil and Switzerland and what do I see on one of the sideboards?
George Foreman's big ass grinning head.
They are marketing the Foreman Grill to the Swiss.
I'm not sure what this says about capitalism or US / Europe relations. But it was damn odd.

Are We In A Bubble?

Maybe it's a time warp. Apparently emboldened by their recent opening of a can of electoral whup ass, Georgia Republicans are ready to restrict abortions. All abortions. No exceptions.

Didn't South Dakota just go through this and the voters eventually rejected it? South freaking Dakota!

My god, the entire nation turned topsy turvy last tuesday and down here in Georgia we act like it was a passing breeze with no effect. Trust me boys, people are sick of extremism on both sides. Your day will come.

Idiocy. Sheer idiocy.

UPDATE: Via the email thing, Richard informs me that two similar bills were introduced last session and died in committee. Even though both houses were Republican control. So, this could just be more standard fare but its always good to be cautious and expose idiots where idiots live.

Hide The Guns Mabel!

Thank the crying baby Jesus I took all my guns back to south Georgia!

The 12th shooting death of a suspect by DeKalb County police this year prompted Chief Executive Officer Vernon Jones to appeal to the public to "put your weapon down" in confrontations with officers. ~AJC

Grayson is right. How about a little oversight into why the Dekalb police, one of the finest in the state, are suddenly mainlining Dirty Harry?

Journalism Reaches A New Low

I've always tried to keep an open mind about Fox News. My moment of clarity came listening to Sean Hannity rant one day. It bothered me that a news organization that would allow a host to spew complete falsehoods for three hours a day with no editorial oversight and no chance of retraction of lies and then prop him up for an hour every night as a "serious" journalist.

It's the same reason I was so furious when CNN hired Glenn Beck.

Well, just when I thought it couldn't get any lower, the following is what passes for editorial control at Fox News.

The election and Rumsfeld's resignation were a major event, but not the end of the world. The war on terror goes on without interruption... And let's be on the lookout for any statements from the Iraqi insurgents, who must be thrilled at the prospect of a Dem-controlled congress.

My irritation at Sean Hannity now screams Pollyanna.

And to those of you who bought the liberal media myth, let me assure you if executives thought it would sell one more salad shooter CNN and MSNBC would do the same.

People have said it before but I'm going to say it again. Journalists need to wake up. You've been asleep at the switch for the past six years. You've been wheezing and rattling your last breaths since the mid-90s. Public trust for your noble profession is trending towards non-existent.

Either shape up or roll over in the tar pit and sink into fossilization.

Things Remembered

Turnip greens, pepper sauce and hoecake

Songs In My Head

Hands On The Wheel

Willie Nelson

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

There Was Much Rejoicing In The Land

The only joy in a 5-5 season!

UPDATE: The Lakeland Ledger is reporting that an FSU booster negotiated the settlement, i.e. blood money, to arrange Jeffys "resignation".

Gay Marriage Should Be Illegal

StopGeek explains why.

My favorite?

02) Gay marriage will encourage people to be gay, in the same way that
hanging around tall people will make you tall.


h/t: Donklephant

Things Remembered

Dinner on the ground by the Ochlocknee

Monday, November 13, 2006

Songs In My Head

Right Here In My Heart

Caroline Monroe

Florida's Martinez New RNC Chair

The left doesn't like him.

The right doesn't like him.

Things that make you go hmmmmmmm.

I Was Centrist

When centrist wasn't cool.
The latest cover of Time.


The federal government is now in the business of bailing out country clubs.

Yet when a businessman wanted to revive the struggling club, the U.S. Department f Agriculture, through its Rural Development branch, agreed to guarantee 90 percent of his $6 million loan.

Guess what. It didn't work and taxpayers shelled out almost $2 million.

Hey. We're just the gallery, paying to watch bloated government agencies duck hook an endless supply of balls at our heads. Will we ever follow common sense and get out of the way?

h/t: Peach Pundit

Sacred Harp

It's as southern as you can get.

Tonight at 10:00pm Georgia Public Broadcasting will present "Awake My Soul", a new documentary on the unique musical form.
I've got my DVR set. If you live in Georgia, I encourage you to do the same.

UPDATE: As I set my DVR, I noticed that GPB is also re-broadcasting "The Carter Family: Will The Circle Be Unbroken: at 9:00. That's definitely worth a look as well.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Big Day

Rovers are playing Man U.

Noles are playing the Dreamin Deacons.

Two teams. Two seasons on the cusp. I need KFC and beer.

UPDATE: Well that was an ugly day.

Weird rumor of the day. During the Rovers / Red Devils match, the commentators talked about a rumor that Beckham is coming to Blackburn. No effing way!

And yes, nast. I do remember our wager. See you at the Brewhouse next weekend.

Well That Didn't Take Long

Did you hear that? It was the collective exhale of millions of people holding their breath in anticipation of the Democrats screwing things up.

Well, it may have started.

Dean was elected. If Carville has a master plan to stage a coup against Dean, I'd love to see it. But I doubt the state party chairs who provided Dean's margin of victory are going to get too torn up about the fact that Dean is helping fund their resurgence...Carville needs to shut the f*ck up. If he wants a war, we'll give him one.

The war between Kos and the DLC has been burbling in the blog world for months. Well, guess what. You guys won. That means your little spats are now going to be big news.

Here's a hint on how to handle the limelight.

Grow up.

Quit kicking sand around the sandbox and start acting like leaders. Kos? You want to change the Democrat Party? A good start would be not fulfilling the most basic stereotype of the last 25 years. That a Democrat is a squalling, petulant child that can't play with others.

UPDATE: So what would be a great next move? Dig up a quote from Carville from six years ago.

By choosing former Georgia governor Zell Miller as his running mate, Al Gore could add intellectual brainpower, rhetorical firepower, and lots of plain old populist piss-and-vinegar to this staid election.

If Carville had said this yesterday, I would be the first to call him a ninny. But he didn't. He said it in 2000 and given that context it makes perfect sense. Maybe if Markos had actually asked someone from Georgia, they could have informed him that Miller has mutated from savvy centrist politician to a complete loon. Things change. You would think an advocate of radical change would understand this.

Songs In My Head

Fast As You

Dwight Yoakam

Friday, November 10, 2006

Wooten On Crack

I want some of what Jim Wooten is smoking.

History, and military historians, will be kind to Donald Rumsfeld. While Rumsfeld and his generals might, in retrospect, have made different decisions here and there, including Fallujah, his strategy was sound, his insistence that the United States not prepare to be an “occupation” army was wise, and his leadership was just what a nation at war needs.

I'm thinking he will be remembered more like Braxton Bragg.

Although he had some initial successes like the invasion of Kentucky, once he got there, he spent time installing a Confederate legislature and inaugurating his hand picked governer while his army lurched towards the decisive defeat at Perryville.

Following Chickamauga, he had a chance to wipe out the Union Army of the Tennessee but instead sat on Missionary Ridge intransigent in the belief his siege strategy would be successful right up to the day that Grant's forces routed him right off that hill.

He was so acrimonious that practically every subordinate hated him. In the end he had to be shuffled off to obscurity to prevent open rebellion in his own staff.

But at least he got a top notch military base named for him. Maybe Rumsfeld will get the same.

Immigration. The Next Welfare Reform?

The year is 1994. After two years bogged in minor issues and a disastrous campaign to nationalize healthcare, the Clinton administration faces a Republican controlled congress. The first to hold both house in 50 years.

The year is 1995. Acrimony rules as Clinton and new House Speaker Newt Gingrich joust along Pennsylvania Avenue. In November, the war of words hits reality as the government is shut down. Public opinion of boths sides reaches its nadir.

The year is 1996. Clinton and the Republican congress reach a historic compromise to "end welfare as we know it". Modeled after successful state programs like Wisconsin's, it is a comprehensive plan to move welfare mothers into the work force and break generations of government dependancy. Clinton rises from the lowest point of his administration to re-election. Republicans in congress retain control.

The year is 2006. Welfare has ended as we know it. With exception of a few on the left, the 1996 Welfare to Work act is universally seen as a success and one of the crowning achievements of the Clinton administration.

The year is 2006. Democrats take control of both houses of congress for the first time in 12 years. Although President Bush no longer faces re-election, he faces a place in history scarred by the failed Iraq war.

Why bring this all up? My brain sparked like a car battery on a cold night by an exchange in President Bush's November 8th press conference.

Q Thank you, Mr. President. On immigration, many Democrats had more positive things to say about your comprehensive proposal than many Republicans did. Do you think a Democratic Congress gives you a better shot at comprehensive immigration reform?

THE PRESIDENT: You know, I should have brought this up. I do. I think we have a good chance. Thank you. It's an important issue and I hope we can get something done on it. I meant to put that in my list of things that we need to get done.

Bush and the new Democrat congress have a historic opportunity. They have a chance to avoid the time lost by Clinton and the newly minted Republican congress in the 90s. Time that roiled the nation and caused the electorate to seethe like pitchfork wielding peasants at the castle gate.

President Bush and the Democrats agree on the basics of immigration reform. As with welfare reform they simply need to smooth out the edges. Find places to compromise. Show the American people that they indeed can work together.

It's a unique opportunity for everyone to win. The Democrats pass important bi-partisan legislation demonstrating they can work with the President. President Bush has something besides Iraq on which to hang his legacy hat.

If it's obvious to me, it must be obvious to the Washington power players. January is almost here. Get to work boys and girls.

Songs In My Head

Carefree Highway

Gordon Lightfoot

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Weirdness in Florida

What else is new? It is election time after all.

Over 18000 undervotes in the Florida 13th. That's Katherine Harris old district by the way. It could be protests votes but that's a huge number.

Definitely worth watching over the next month or so.

The Neutering Of Talk Radio

I made a prediction three weeks ago. I know, I know, anyone can claim a prediction in the aftermath. Ignore that for a moment.

As the Democrat sweep became inevitable, I noted to a friend that an unexpected side benefit might be the neutering of certain types of talk radio.

I occasionally listen to Rush. I listen to quite a bit of Sean Hannity. In the final weeks, it became obvious both were pounding the same points over and over again, trying to find traction. It had certainly worked in the past. In the 90s, Rush actually had the power to ever so slightly move the national conversation.

In this cycle things didn't quite work so well. Rush and Sean pushed and pushed yet the polls kept growing in the opposite direction. Hannity in particular became shriller and shriller. Nothing would stick. The "Speaker Pelosi" meme. Nope. The terrorists would win. Nope. For me the most laughable point came when Hannity wondered aloud why a state like Montana wouldn't re-elect a Conrad Burns. Yeah, why wouldn't they do that given that Burns was tarred with Abramoff and run one of the worst Senate campaigns in recent history.

Hannity's program became the refuge of such obvious losers as Katherine Harris and Rick Santorum. Anyone except the most ardent listener recognized the radio heads were trying to prop up a corpse.

Election day came and the corpse finally fell. Ever the shill, Rush both equivocates and allows us to peek at his true self for a moment.

The way I feel is this: I feel liberated, and I'm going to tell you as plainly as I can why. I no longer am going to have to carry the water for people who I don't think deserve having their water carried. Now, you might say, "Well, why have you been doing it?" Because the stakes are high. Even though the Republican Party let us down, to me they represent a far better future for my beliefs and therefore the country's than the Democrat Party and liberalism does.

In a sense, he has confirmed what some always suspected. Rush and his ilk will say anything at any cost. All their whining about being independent thinkers and critics of the administration are in question.

Centrists like Joe Gandleman and even right leaning fans like Bill Simon are asking the talk heads some hard questions this morning. Questions, I suspect will not be answered. Well, will not be answered honestly.

Maybe it's the emergence of the blogs. Maybe it's just the natural course of this particular entertainment cycle winding down. Either way, the day after the election, the power of talk radio is not quite what it used to be. It's not longer the 90s boys. You better get used to it.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Breaking News: Rumsfeld Steps Down!

Just flashed on CNN.

Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld is resigning.

Glory hallelujah! It is as if the dark veil is slowly being removed. There are many ill, oily things out there to content with but this really has the feel of things moving in the right direction.

UPDATE: Robert Gates is the replacement choice. He's the ex-CIA director. Interesting.

UPDATE II: The tv talking heads believe that Gates is a savvy choice. He served under both Clinton and Bush I. He should be easily confirmed whether its the lame duck congress or the new one. That's more positive news. Let the healing begin.

UPDATE IV: Some on the left are already rumbling about Gates involvement in Iran-Contra. Based on what I've read, Gates came away with as little taint as possible for someone that high in the Bush I administration. Come on left! You've got to give this a chance to work!

Manuels - The Horror, The Horror

Drunk hillbillies on election night. And no the camera wasn't shaking. That's how we really look.

Grayson a hi-larious review of the night.

Georgia Amendment II - Final Thought

I know a lot of people come here looking for thoughts on Georgia Amendment II. Well, it passed by a hefty margin.

My final reaction?


I voted against it on a principle. I honestly don't think it does any harm in practice. It will sit there like a boil on the constitution's ass for infinity. But I see no need to lance it. The discomfort should be minimal.

So that's that. Let's move on.

Why Florida Matters

Dana Blankenhorn gets it exactly right:

Florida was previously seen as almost a northern state, due to a large number of
retirees in South Florida, but is now more like other Southern states, as sprawl
takes over from Destin (practically a suburb of Atlanta) south, filling in
orange groves and swamps with tract houses. The triangle of Tallahassee-Tampa-Jacksonville is now the center of power in that state. It's all exurb

As you may know, I spend a great deal of time in the "triangle". It's all about growth in Florida. Property taxes, impact fees and homeowner's insurance dominate the thoughts of most central Floridians. They care about things like abortion, gay marriage and the like but when the rubber hits the road, they vote with their wallets.

So where do Democrats go? One word. The environment. The Wakulla Springs area and the pandhandle coast are in danger from development runoff. In the near future, the oyester beds of Appalachicola could experience a dead zone similar to the one near New Orleans. Water issues dominate the whole region.

But Dems have to pirouette on a tightrope. It's an issue where they can win but they absolutely cannot appear to be wacko, tax everything out of existence hippies.

However the next two years unfold, look to Florida to be the next political laboratory.

The Morning After

Reading the paper. Watching CNN. Gah! They still don't know about Montana and Virginia?!

First blog of the day, Atlanta Public Affairs.

I agree with Decaturguy, the boys at Political Insider nailed the Georgia Guv race.

It operated as if Democrats were still the establishment party, when it should
have operated as a populist insurgency. Like Perdue in 2002.

It has to change after 130 years of rule. But change has to come. Otherwise Georgia Democrats will wander the desert for generations.

End Of The Night

Not too many surprises.

To my fellow local bloggers. I feel we ignored a critical weakness. I only know you guys from your blogger or media pictures. Trying to find you in a bar with 1000 drunk Democrats was like trying to find a needle in a stack of needles.

A suggestion. We need a post-election wind down.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Time For Electioning! Time Fer Drankin!

Time to head to the headquarters for some beer and some results.

What's The One Thing...

What's the one thing that might knock the biggest midterm election in history off the front page?

Britney Spears files for divorce.

I might be wrong. I hope I'm wrong. If I'm not, we truly live in the toilet and deserve what ever gets dumped on us.

One More Kitty For The Road

Go with (Christian-only) God, Kitty. Go with (Christian-only) God.
Photo courtesy of AP via The Lakeland Ledger

Poll Report

Two words.


A line of cars down the street. A line inside the polling place. Almost all machines filled.

We're gonna have a high turnout people.

Time To Vote!

And after watching the HBO documentary "Hacking Democracy", I am placing a chicken bone cross on my machine before I start hitting buttons.

Back shortly with a poll report!

Thoughts On Florida

I won't be doing Florida endorsements. Even though I spend an inordinate amount of time in the sunshine state, I am a resident of Georgia and making calls on their races just makes me feel like a carpetbagger.

But I do have some thoughts.

Charlie Crist is going to win. Probably by around 5 points. Both Crist and Davis are fine men. They could be the models for what the national parties should be. Floridians are lucky to have such a quality choice. Lord knows, we Georgians would fall to our knees and raise our arms to the heavens if our candidates were even half as nobe.

Joe Negron may pull it out in the 16th. He's run a hell of a campaign in the final weeks and Democrat Tim Mahoney ran a risky low profile campaign. I think Mahoney was counting on Foley being on the ballot ushering him in. The risk was lack of name recognition. Hell, I follow Florida politics and three days ago and I couldn't tell you Mahoney's name. It's going to be close but I think that this district isgerrymandered way too conservative for Mahoney to pull it off. Even if he does? Negron takes it back in two years.

Gosh, I will miss Katherine Harris. The only difference between Katherine Harris and George Allen is Kitty never had a chance to win. But that didn't keep her down! Not even lack of "pink sugar" could keep her down! Harris was rocket fuel for this blog. After today, she will finally be exorcised to the Republican hinterlands. Still, I'm going to keep the sad clown picture around just in case.

That's all I got for now. Good luck Florida. Have a safe, fun election. That emotion may sound a little overwrought. But it is Florida.

Last Look At CQ

Last look at CQ.

213-199 Democrat with 23 no clear favorite

48-48 with 4 no clear favorite.

Damn is this gonna be fun!

The griftdrift prediction?

Dems take the house.

Senate is 50-49 with Lieberman in the balance.

Lord wouldn't that be fun! See you in the morning.

Songs In My Head

In My Hour Of Darkness

Gram Parsons

Monday, November 06, 2006

The Endorsements - Ballot Issues

We seem to have a predilection for amending our already bloated constitution. It bothers me. For that reason, my default position on any amendment is no and then I try to see if there is any way I can be pulled to a yes.

Amendment I, To Restrict The Use Of Eminent Domain - YES: The one amendment where practically everyone agrees. After the horrific Kelo decision nothing may be more important than protecting property rights from the tentacles of government. What makes this amendment shocking is the legislature actually got one right! This may be the one that when you cast your vote you will feel all warm and fuzzy.

Amendment II, To Protect The Tradition Of Hunting and Fishing - NO: If you are a regular reader, you already know my struggle with this one. In the end, I reverted to my default position. This amendment is useless. Few things bother me more than useless law. It's also a political stalking horse used by certain segments to scare monger the populace to the poll on the assumption that hunters and fishermen will vote their way. That type of political pandering should not be rewarded. Don't let something that we love become a political pawn. Vote no.

Amendment III, To Dedicate Revenue From Special License Plates - NO: GAH! What an abomination! License plates should have one purpose. Identification. Period. They should be utilitarian and that is it! If this thing passes how many bajillion different "causes" will line up at the prison machine shop to have their own special plate pressed? Talk about pandora's box! This is an easy one. Vote for common sense. Vote for government doing what it needs and nothing more. Vote no.

Referendums A-F, Exemptions on taxes to certain classes of individuals - NO on all: I promise you that I am not an uncaring, hard ass. I love farmers, veterans, old people, charities and peace officers. However, at a time that we should be looking for ways to simpify our tax code, we seem hell bent on giving new exemptions to every group that gives our hearts a sympathetic tug. Take a stand for simpler tax codes and vote no on all referenda. Trust me. No one will think you are a meanie.

I think that's it. I hope my thoughts have been a little helpful. But however you feel or lean, get your ass out and vote. It's just too damned important.

The Endorsements - The Offices

Governor - Garrett Hayes (L): Pox! Pox! Pox! What a choice. Two mean-ass southern politicians who have spent the entire election cycle trying to out tough, out-rich and out sleaze each other. It's old style Georgia politics and it needs to stop. Many would say a vote for the libertarian is a wasted vote or just a protest vote. Fine. Maybe it's time for a little protest. Isn't it about time we let our leaders know that 130 years of the being force fed the same crap is enough? A vote for Hayes may be the primal scream we all need.

Lieutenant Governor - Jim Martin (D): This is a bit of snark endorsement. I actually believe despite his affinity for holding hands with the right wing crazies, Casey Cagle would make a competent leader. However, Jim Martin has a couple of things going for him, not the least is he is the opposition. We've seen at a national level what happens when there is no one holding the gate on the sty. Martin is the type of quiet leader with the beaucratic background that will know how to check as many excesses as possible. And it will definitely be fun to watch him try to wrangle a Republican Senate.

Secretary of State - Karen Handel (R): Note to my democrat friends. Gail Buckner has been wholly unimpressive. Secretary of State is an administrative position that is actually important and I can't trust anyone to run the department who can't even seem to run her own campaign. Handel has a McCain-like tendency to flirt with the religious nuts but she actually showed some competence in trying to fix the mess that is the Fulton County Commission. That redeeming quality will have to be enough in this one.

School Superintendent - David Chastain (L): The pox flows like wine but this is a special one. I don't care how many times people say Kathy Cox is competent, she wanted to remove evolution as a standard and that loses my vote forever. Denise Majette is such a political opportunistic toad that I will never vote for her again. David Chastain on the other hand understands exactly how this office should be run. He wants to eliminate it. He wants it replaced with a professional board of educators and administrators. That is spot on. This may be the easiest choice on the whole ballot.

New we wade deeply into the Administrative positions. Remember, the mule rule rules.

Agriculture Commissioner - Tommy Irvin (D): The only angle it seems anyone can attack Tommy on is that he's been there forever. That might work if Irvin's ideas were stuck in the 60s. They are not. Gary Black is a fine man and actually would be a good choice, but there's simply no good reason to throw Tommy out.

Labor Commissioner - Michael Thurmond (D): Disclosure, I used to work for DOL. Thurmond oversees a well oiled machine that he has rapidly brought into the 21st century. He also oversaw one of the biggest small business tax breaks in the history of Georgia. Like Irvin, there's really no reason for a change here.

Insurance Commissioner - John Oxendine (R): John Oxendine is a troll but I reallly can't find a reason to not vote for him. The mule rule rules.

Attorney General - Thurbert Baker (D): I'm not overly fond of Baker, but once again, mule rule rules. Hold the nose and vote.

And of course, we can't forget the Georgia Supreme Court. Yes, we elect judges down this way.

Georgia Supreme Court - Carol Hunstein: I hope this race opens some eyes. The behavior here is exactly why judges should not be subject to election. I expect politicians and activists to act like asses. I expect better from the judiciary. The bottom line is as distasteful as I find Hunstein's ad campaign, the Georgia Chamber of Commerce is trying to buy a judge here and that's just plain wrong. Don't believe the crap you have read or heard about Hunstein. She is a competent jurist who has strong bi-partisan support. She's exactly the type of judge Georgia needs.

Oh yeah. And I am voting for Hank Johson (D) in the Georgia 4th. If nothing else, at least we finally have a sane choice.

I think that's it. Did I forget any?

The Endorsements - The Rules

Tomorrow's the big day! Others have made their endorsements. Check out the wide cross section of views at Rusty's, Amber's, Decaturguy's, Jace's and Chris Farris'.

Before I lay mine out everybody better understand a couple of ground rules.

The Mule Rule - For those of you non-Georgia readers, you may be shocked at the number of administrative positions that we elect. It's rather insane. In general, these are not policy makers. They can do very little without the legislature's permission. They manage teams of inspectors, work crews, clean up crews and enforcement agents. In a word, they are managers. For that reason, I almost always vote for the incumbent unless he breaks the mule rule. Unless he or she has been caught fornicating with a hitched mule they deserve to be re-elected.

The Pox Rule - My political philosophy tends towards libertarian. Yes, I am more of a left libertarian because I focus on the social rather than the fiscal, but the core philosophy is all the same. The best thing about having this viewpoint is that when both sides are jackasses, I still have somewhere to go. So, if the big guys have pissed me off? A pox on both their houses. I vote libertarian even if I disagree with that candidate on some issues.

Enough rules. On to the endorsements...

Sunday, November 05, 2006

I Had A Vision

Last night I had a vision. Possibly a bolt from the blue prophecy.

Late Tuesday night, the eyes of the nation will turn south to the state of Georgia as tight races in the 8th and 12th determine the fate of the U.S. House of Representatives.

Of course, it could have been the beer.

UPDATE: Apparently Erick at Peach Pundit agrees with me. I swear I wrote this before I read that.

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Stop It. Just Stop It.

The gay question is swirling around Charlie Crist in Florida.

527s get involved

Davis gets asked

It causes Bush to snap

Dammit. Florida has inportant issues to deal with. Insurance premiums in the wake of hurricanes. Development that threatens to eat the entire I-4 corridor. Environmental issues affecting the Big Bend / Panhandle coast.

And what do we get? Which orifice Charlie Crist prefers to stick it in.

Come on Florida press! You're better than this! Well dammit, at least you should be better than this!

Quote Of The Day

Elections in Florida. Makes you wonder.

In Broward, as much as 70 percent of the vote will actually be cast on Election Day, said Ed Pozzuoli, Broward County chairman of Charlie Crist's gubernatorial campaign and former county Republican leader.

I know. I know! He's talking about absentees and early voting but it still made my snicker. This is Florida we're talking about! It ain't like they don't occasionally find a box of ballots hid in somebody's closet!

Hell Yes I'm In!

National Drunk Blogging Day!

Take one look at my avatar. Was there ever any question?

h/t: Amber

Songs In My Head

Always On My Mind


Friday, November 03, 2006

Habeas? We Don't Need Know Stinkin' Habeas!

What if what some of have feared for a long time is actually true? What if our President's insistence on the abandonment of Habeas Corpus has nothing to do with fighting terrorism but more to do with his increasing intransigence to admitting mistakes have been made? Any mistakes. What if an examination of evidence of the Guantanamo detainees showed that there is little if any evidence they intended to perform acts of terror?

What if someone just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time?

When asked about the man's crime, Manchel laughs bitterly. "Being the usual suspect in the wrong place at the wrong time," he says. "He was held as an enemy combatant, but he wasn't captured on a battlefield and there was no allegation that he'd had any special training. There's nothing I've seen to suggest that he's done anything wrong."

But that guy was actaully in Pakistan so stories about being in the wrong place aren't exactly true.

Emmet Bondurant, a prominent Atlanta litigator, is likewise frustrated with the lack of evidence against his client, a 39-year-old Moroccan named Ahmed Errachidi. In fact, a recent investigation by the Boston Globe concluded that during the months the U.S. government claims he attended an al-Qaeda training camp, Errachidi was actually working at a restaurant in London.

But these guys were apprehended by U.S. or allied forces who have no motivation other than the protection of the American people right?

Veteran defense attorney Howard Manchel represents Abdullah Ibrahim Al Rushaidan, a Saudi who said he'd been plucked out of a car by a bounty hunter in Pakistan and brought to Guantanamo blindfolded, chained to the floor of a cargo plane. Manchel's client was later sent back to Saudi Arabia, whose government threw him into prison -- all without explanation.

Well, that all just sounds like fancy lawyering from attorneys who are trying to set terrorists free. The military obviously knows the real deal.

Brig. Gen. Jay Hood, the camp commander at Guantanamo until he left the post earlier this year, voiced his frustration to the Wall Street Journal in early 2005. "Sometimes," he said, "we just didn't get the right folks."

Habeas Corpus exists not just to protect the innocent. It doesn't even exist to just protect the guilty. Habeas Corpus exists to protect us all. It is the first stone in the foundation of every humane judicial system that has existed since 1250. What kind of nation have we become that this most basic principle would be sacrificed to cover up the insane zealotry of a few politicians?

If what some of us have suspected all along turns out to be true, not only will the Bush administration rot in a level lower than Nixon in history's hell but we will all be swathed with the taint.

Read the full article where I found these excerpts at Creative Loafing.

Geek Moment

I wonder if they ever wonder why someone in Atlanta keeps checking their site.

There's some incredible weather happening off the coast of Florida. The front that just moved through is causing abnormally high winds and wave heights. 10 footers off the coast of Jacksonville. Rough day to be in the Atlantic.

McCain Again

What a maverick.

Thursday, November 02, 2006


Many people struggle with the concept of irony. I always use the simple explanation that a firehouse burning down is irony. I think I have a new one.

A robber knocked off a bank early Thursday within yards of scores of armed police officers. The target was the Atlanta City Employees Credit Union office in the Ponce de Leon Avenue building, which also is home to Atlanta police headquarters, said police spokesman Joe Cobb.

Atlanta City Credit Union robbed. Irony. It's delicious.

Quote Of The Day

Chuck Shumer in Newsweek:

"The days of Democrats having to check 28 boxes before they run are over.
We want to win"

Hmmmmm. Bout time.

Punch Foley

Joe Negron is desperately trying to hold onto the Florida 16th for the Republicans. For those of you not paying attention it's the former district of alledged boy buggerer Mark Foley. It's an almost impossible task given that Foley's name remains on the ballot.

Desperation often leads to creativity.

This ad is about as good as it gets.

In fact, I would say it's the best I've seen this whole election season.

Daily Show Takes On Senate Races

Video here.

Check it out. It's worth it just for the clips of the Burns / Tester debate. Burns is a real piece of work!

Jelly Bellies

Winter Haven, Fla Police Chief Paul Goward issued a memo regarding his force's apparent weight problem. The title, "Are You A Jelly Belly?". Some sensey officers cried harrassment. Goward was fired.

In his memo, titled "Are You a Jelly Belly," the chief never singled anyone out, and apart from the title, didn't call anyone names...Winter Haven cops must pass physical examinations to be hired but are not regularly tested for fitness thereafter.

This may shock you but from my experience the above policy is more common than not. To be fair, Winter Haven city elders claim morale in the force was already very low due to Goward's abusive behavior. That may or may not be true but in the end is it really wrong to expect our police officers not be fat asses?

Songs In My Head

A new late night feature.

Nobody's Home by Clint Black

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Atlanta Police Chief Criticizes N.R.A

Once again the N.R.A. is going after certain federal gun regulations controlling the sale of firearms. Atlanta's own Richard Pennington doesn't like it one bit.

"What the gun lobby is doing in Washington is making it harder for me to do my job in Atlanta," Pennington said. "Instead of handcuffing law enforcement, we should put political handcuffs on the NRA's lobbyists."

As I have said in a couple of places, if the police say they need a certain regulation, I tend to agree. The question you have to ask yourself is are you going to trust the police or a political lobby? If it was any issue other than guns how would you answer that question?

New Blog

Just added to the roll.

Doug Monroe's Peachtree Screed

If you are a Georgian, you should be highly interested.

If you aren't a Georgian and value good snarky commentary, you should also be highly interested.

Kerry = Idiot

It's pretty much across the board. From Democrats that are pissed off about having to defend garbage again to Republicans who are spinning with glee. About the only people who aren't ready to ride John Kerry out on a rail are the left activists who seem to follow the mantra defend Democrats at any costs. For my part? Kerry is an idiot. And it really comes down to one thing. In 2004, he couldn't beat the equivalent of a gibbering moron. Everything since is his fault. He should pull a Gary Hart and slink off into obscurity. Or at least shut the eff up.

A cross section:

Local Democrats
The Moderates
The rabid right

Ugh. You know what? Even if somewhere in my heart I could find room to forgive Kerry for being an idiot, I could never forgive him for giving Malkin such a gift.

UPDATE: Brendan Nyhan has a good take on the joke aspect of the remarks. Okay, given the context, I get it now. It doesn't make it any less stupid or Kerry any less a poor politician. A lot of people I know have been quietly humming the mantra, "how will the Dems screw all this up". Well.....

UPDATE II: Kerry apologized earlier today on the Imus show. Now he has issued a formal apology and you can read it here. Joe, has a couple of good points. The apology cuts off the effectiveness of the current Republican attack and also keeps the Iraq issue in play. Don't think it wasn't noticed that the President had to muddy himself in leading the attack on a relatively minor gaffe. None of this changes my mind that Kerry is an idjit and should still vamoose!