Friday, February 29, 2008

Optimist of the Week: Charlie Johnston

Conservative blogger and GOP strategist Charlie Johnston opines in Illinoize that Tim Baldermann's exit from the IL-14 race could not only prove beneficial to Republicans holding the seat of disgraced Congressman Jerry Weller (R-Playa Coco), but, Johnston contends
"it may actually enhance the chances of Republicans not only to hold the 11th, but in other Illinois districts as well."
Johnston goes on to say the GOP fill-in would optimally have the one-two punch of district-wide name recognition and the ability to self-fund, but that at least one of those two elements is critical.

He contends,
"Lauzen starts off with strong name recognition, even if it is not all positive, because of that high-profile race. He also carries some residual recognition from his race for Comptroller 10 years ago. From that race and the near proximity of his senate district to the 11th Lauzen would not start out a stranger to the district."
To suggest that General Election voters outside of the 14th CD have been paying close attention to the Republican primary in the 14th is absurd. Lauzen has no ties whatsoever to the 11th CD. And to the extent voters in the Chicago media market --in which a majority of the population of the 11th live-- paid attention to the ads and news coming out of that race, they are likely to have seen two angry rivals beating the living snot out of one another. If they were still paying attention after the milkman won the nomination (to further stretch plausibility), they saw Lauzen bitterly refusing to concede defeat.

Beyond absurd is the suggestion that voters will remember the Lauzen because he lost a race for a Constitutional office a decade ago.


A Constitutional office.

Ten years ago.

(And if they did, might they remember Lauzen was a sore loser then, too, suing Hynes' campaign for libel after the race ended?)

So, in sum Chris Lauzen's case for the 11th is as follows; just lost a nasty Republican congressional primary in the another district; has no ties whatsoever to the 11th; two-time loser when he's ventured outside of his state senate seat; two-time sore loser, when he's ventured outside of his state senate seat; personal wealth.

Yes, Chris Lauzen is the savior the NRCC and the Illinois Republican Party has been waiting for.

Thanks to Jon in comments for pointing out that Lauzen's 1998 suit was against his primary opponent.  The result was a $2,000 donation to charity.  

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Thursday, August 16, 2007

The Man in Black was no Republican hack

So the RNC, for whom irony apparently does not exist, has taken to poking fun at John Edwards for his wealth. Their predicable missive caps off with Edwards' face on a million dollar bill under the heading, "Johnny Cash."

That's where the estate of Johnny Cash comes in. Seems they didn't want the RNC soiling the singer's good name, and told them so.

Snide even when wrong, the RNC spokesidiot said, "We're in a ring of fire." [HILARIOUS, and not at all predictable!] "But they were cool about it. I mean, we have the same constituency."

Yeah, Johnny Cash and the modern GOP. Kindred spirits. Give me a f'ing break.

Let's look at lyrics from one of Cash's most defining works, Man in Black:

I wear the black for the poor and the beaten down,
Livin' in the hopeless, hungry side of town,
I wear it for the prisoner who has long paid for his crime,
But is there because he's a victim of the times.

Yeah...sounds like a page right out of a Romney speech, no?

I wear the black for those who never read,
Or listened to the words that Jesus said,
About the road to happiness through love and charity,
Why, you'd think He's talking straight to you and me.

Wait...I thought Jesus hated Mexicans, Arabs, Democrats and science. Love? Charity?

I wear it for the sick and lonely old,
For the reckless ones whose bad trip left them cold,
I wear the black in mournin' for the lives that could have been,
Each week we lose a hundred fine young men.

And, I wear it for the thousands who have died,
Believen' that the Lord was on their side,
I wear it for another hundred thousand who have died,
Believen' that we all were on their side.

Um, yeah. The same Johnny Cash whose career was dedicated to standing up for the lonely, the forgotten, the downtrodden and the imprisoned; the same Johnny Cash who was friends with Nixon but refused to sing right-wing country hits "Okie from Muskogee" and "Welfare Queens" for him, choosing instead to sing "The Ballad of Ira Hayes," the song about the Native American Marine who was one of the flag raisers on Iwo Jima, and still was discriminated against once he returned stateside; the same Johnny Cash who reportedly told his daughter, Roseanne, to convey to audiences his dismay for the Iraq War...this is the Johnny Cash the RNC thinks they share a constituency with?

Not in this lifetime.

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Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Jim Rowe. Hilarious Buffoon.

So now Jim Rowe thinks he's going to be a US Senator. Apparently when Don Harmon gave him his whoopin' last year in his quixotic run for State Senate, it only steeled his resolve.

This won't be a long post -- he's not a serious candidate. But some things on his web site are too much to miss.

First, his slogan is "A vision for America...a voice for it's people."

Mr. Rowe, I don't mean to get all grammar-police on you, but the possessive form of "its" requires no apostrophe. You are running for US Senate. You might have someone proofread your web site.

He also writes, "Steve Neal, a Sun-Times columnist, had this to say recently about Senator Durbin..."

What exactly is your definition of "recently?" Because unfortunately, Mr. Neal has been dead for three-and-a-half years. And that column was written two years before he died. So, I guess in a geologic sense, it was written recently, but not really.

He also cherry-picks a Durbin approval rating from 2006 that had him at 51%. More recent polling (by a Republican polling firm no less - see Illinoize) has him at 60%.

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Monday, June 11, 2007

Albania, part 2

Bush visits Albania. Albanians show him love. Most with, you know, perspective, realize this is a recognition for an American president showing interest in their fledglind democracy.

And then there are a couple of the moronic thirty percenters...

A conservative blogger who calls himself "the big dog" says "Democratic Leadership could learn from Albania."

That's rich. And by rich, I mean laughably stupid.

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Albania: The Saddest Place on Earth

In today's New York Times, Albanian Prime Minister Sali Berisha is quoted as saying George W. Bush is
"the greatest and most distinguished guest we have ever had in all times."

Surely there's a Borat joke in there somewhere.

PS. Albanians, take no offense. Your country is rich in history and a proud fledgling democracy. But, in the US, Mr. Bush, he's do I put this...kind of a f#*k up. Granted, it took much of our own great nation six years to come around to that kind of thinking, but, you know...

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Sunday, June 10, 2007

Made in America: Good Night Sopranos

Just a few notes:

I really think the people who are pissed about the ending of this great series are little kids on summer break.

One guy suggested Chase was chasing movie dollars: doubt it.

The frustrating end was part of the genius of David Chase. The tenseness of being a mob boss combined with the happiness -even if we all know its temporary- of nuclear family life. Not exactly combining the sacred with the propane (who won't miss little Carmine and his Bushian malaprops), but what a show...

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Happy Birthday Studs!

Happy 95th Birthday to America's historian - Studs Terkel.

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Thursday, April 19, 2007

This is neither the time, nor the place.

Most of us are still reeling from the tragic mass murder at Virginia Tech. It is impossible to comprehend the range of emotions students, faculty, staff, and most importantly, family and friends of the victims are feeling. The thoughts and prayers of a nation go out to them.

That said, some on both sides of the gun issue are using this tragedy as a vehicle to advance their agendas.

Even as someone who loves a good debate, I can't help but feel that this is sick opportunism.

The the first, and sharpest criticism simply must be heaped at the Bush Administration. In one of the first things uttered by the White House after the tragedy, spokeswoman Dana Perino said,
"The president believes that there is a right for people to bear arms."


George W. Bush is, if nothing else, a doctrinaire conservative. His Second Amendment credentials don't need bolstering. Why, why, why on earth, when you are supposed to be the rational voice of comfort and leadership, do you feel the need to PREFACE your remarks with a shoutout to, not simply the gun owning crowd, but to the irrationally paranoid "cold dead hands" crowd.

Shame too on the GOP presidential contender herd, who also seemed content to fall over themselves to affirm their support for the Second Amendment.

Little tip: This ain't their day. Fellate them next week. Comfort VT families now.

The First Lady got it right:
"We understand that there's going to be, and there has been, an ongoing national discussion, conversation and debate about gun control policy. Of course we are going to be participants in that conversation," she said. "Today, however, is a day that is time to focus on the families, the school, the community."

Well said, Mrs. Bush. At least someone in the White House doesn't have their head up their posterior. Credit too to the NRA, who know their politics and struck a similar tone, and the Democratic presidential contenders, who offered only condolences.

Both sides of the gun debate make valid points, and there will be plenty of time for debate. But not now.

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Testing New Blogger

Testing the new format...not the biggest no brainer in the history of earth.