MCGOP – 23 October 2010

Saturday awoke to another packed house at the Madison County Republican breakfast. 

The speakers were Mo Brooks, Kay Ivey, and Dr. Robert Bentley.  Congressional candidate Mo Brooks took to the microphone waving a broom and asking people to help him “Sweep ‘em all out”!  That is classic Alabama politics – if a dirty ol’ flatbed truck would’ve fit in the room Brooks would’ve raised a cloud of dust sweeping it up.  Mo was having a lot of fun with the stunt, but his message was serious: “our President doesn’t know the America that all of us know” and Obama’s policies are wrecking this country – now is the time to change direction.

Candidate for Lieutenant Governor Kay Ivey spoke about how her opponent (Little Jim Folsom) as President of the Senate wouldn’t recognize Republican Senators during debates – Ivey said “give these State Senators a voice”.

Candidate for Governor Dr. Robert Bentley spread more love during his speech.  Bentley said that he “has a Doctor’s love” for “all the people of Alabama”,  but “don’t confuse love with weakness”.  Bentley said that Republicans have “got to run as a team” and he urged voters “to vote for every Republican on the ticket”.

Here are some quotes from Dr. Love:
“Give us the chance to prove to you that we can govern right”.
“Public servants should be held to a higher standard”.
“Treat taxpayers like customers”.
And my favorite:
“Government should help create jobs, not create Government jobs”.

Dr. Bentley said that Democrat Ron Sparks “is the most liberal man ever to run for Governor”.  Ron Sparks says he won’t tell a woman what to do with her body, Dr. Bentley says that a baby is a separate person.  Ron Sparks doesn’t believe that States have rights (when asked if he supported the enforcement of the 10th Amendment Sparks said “absolutely not”), Dr. Bentley says the Governor must protect State interests against federal overreaching.

Dr. Bentley said that “there are some evil forces in this State” and promised to convene a Special Session of the legislature within (and at the beginning of) the Regular Session “to pass the toughest ethics law that’s ever been passed by any state in this country”.  Bentley recognized Senator Arthur Orr and Representative Mike Ball as champions of ethics legislation.

Dr. Bentley closed by saying that Alabama is “a loving and patriotic State”.

Steve Doyle of The Huntsville Times wrote “Robert Bentley says he’ll push for “toughest ethics law” if elected Alabama governor”:

Bentley said he expects Sparks and other Democratic candidates to sling a few more “arrows” in the form of negative campaign ads in the coming days.

He referenced a TV commercial by state Sen. Lowell Barron, D-Fyffe, against his Republican opponent, Shadrack McGill. In the ad, a woman who recently sued McGill over a deal to sell her a restaurant calls the Woodville businessman a “thief” and a “crook.”

McGill has countersued the woman, Sheila Johnson.

“Shad, your opponent is afraid of you, or he wouldn’t be running negative ads,” Bentley said to McGill, drawing loud applause.

Election 2010 Proposed MadCo Local Amendments

There are two local Madison County amendments on the ballot: Amendment 1 is “to prohibit the imposition of an occupational tax” (Act number 2010-37) and Amendment 2 is “to authorize the Madison County Commission, by resolution, to establish a procedure by which a dog can be declared dangerous…” (Act number 2010-382).

Both of these amendments were proposed by my State Representative Randy Hinshaw (D-21) and I support them both.  I remember Hinshaw asking for public comment about the dangerous dogs bill on Facebook – I supported it then and still do.  The key will be to ensure that the Madison County Commission doesn’t enact a breed-specific ordinance.

Amendment 1 aka HB110 says “No privilege or license tax on the gross receipts of any natural person derived from the conduct of a vocation, occupation, calling, or profession may be levied in Madison County” except for current local business license authority.  Birmingham has an occupational tax, which IMO has driven businesses out of the City and into Shelby County, which IIRC is the fastest growing county in Alabama.  Amendment 1 is a pro-business bill.

Vote YES on Madison County Local Amendment 1.

Amendment 2 aka HB147 says:

The Madison County Commission, by resolution applicable to those areas of Madison County outside the corporate limits of any municipality, may establish a procedure by which a dog can be declared dangerous, may impose civil penalties on the owner of a dog that inflicts severe personal harm on another person, and may require that dangerous dogs, as defined by the commission, be kept in a fenced enclosure, as defined by the commission, with input from the local humane society.

The City of Huntsville has a dangerous animal ordinance (Chapter 5, Article 5).  Not only is it NOT breed-specific, it’s not even species-specific - I wish I had thought to ask Hinshaw to model his legislation after that, but c’est fromage.  IMO Amendment 2 has the potential to provide protection to the residents of Madison County – but we need to ensure that the County Commission doesn’t make the ordinance breed-specific.

Vote YES on Madison County Local Amendment 2.

Bentley meet and greet on the square

From the Dr. Robert Bentley for Governor campaign:

We are having a Meet and Greet for Dr. Bentley at 216 West Side Square, Huntsville Alabama 35801 (Historic Regions Bank Building) from 1:15 to 2:15 on Wednesday, September 22, 2010.  If you are interested in meeting Dr. Bentley and/or hearing him speak, please come to this event.  Your admission price is to bring a friend.

Also, for those involved in the real estate and/or construction industries, we will have another meet and greet at the Huntsville Madison County Builders Association, located at 2804 Bob Wallace Avenue, later that afternoon from 3:30 to 4:30.

We have a tight schedule for him that day, but we hope that you can be with us during one of these time periods to meet the next governor of our great state!  Please do not be concerned about dress.  Dr. Bentley, being a strong supporter of Alabama’s work force, wants to meet you regardless of whether your collar is white, blue or dirty, so please come out and join us on Wednesday afternoon!


We’ve been writing about Robert Bentley since he announced his candidacy for Governor.   BTW, Dr. Bentley supports local restaurants – he and his campaign ate Stanlieo’s subs that day (this is the type of hard-hitting ‘reporting’ you can expect from me).

Brian and I interviewed Dr. Bentley when we filled in for Dale Jackson on WVNN (we’re the true Kingmakers!):

Dr. Bentley described his plan to create scholarships for Primary Care Physicians who commit to working in underserved areas.  He also talked about Health Savings Accounts and we asked him if the State could implement some sort of ‘Individual Development Account’ for Health Care.  We asked Bentley about his Economic Development ideas – he prefers that the State encourage existing / local industries to grow, as opposed to giving (m/b)illions to foreign companies (id est Thyssen-Kruppe).

Madison County Young Republicans win award

From MCYR, with my apologies for not posting this sooner:

Madison County’s own Young Republicans recently took home the prized Small Club of the Year Award at the National Young Republican Federation Conference in Washington, D.C.

“We’re thrilled and quite humbled to have been nominated for this award, and to have won speaks volumes about the momentum and enthusiasm that our club is building, the greatest element of which is our membership,” said MCYR Chairman, Clinton Carter.

 Alabama Republican Party Chairman Mike Hubbard said “The leadership of the Alabama Republican Party is extremely proud of the Madison County Young Republicans.  The award was well deserved and is certainly a testament to the commitment and passion of its membership.  I applaud them for their hard work and dedication.”

The MCYRs were chosen for the Award from 36 Clubs that were nominated throughout the country, out of over 150 Small Clubs in the nation. At over 70 members strong and a regular meeting attendance of 50-60 people, the MCYRs stay active in politics through monthly meetings, campaign volunteering, fundraisers and social get-togethers.

One of the county’s best attended political events of the year, the Huntsville Governors Forum held at the U.S. Space and Rocket Center, came through an event co-sponsored by the MCYRs with RightOnHuntsville.  The Forum featured six of the Republican candidates for Governor.  In all, 575 people attended the Forum and Pre-Forum Reception which also served as a Candidate Meet & Greet for non-Gubernatorial races.

“Our Club has really begun to gain traction in developing young candidates and in getting Republicans elected to all levels of office… as we say ‘from the Courthouse to the White House’” said Clinton Carter. During the past year, the MCYRs have fielded over a dozen candidates and nominees for elected office, including races for State Senate, Public Service Commission, City Council and State School Board.

“We’re going to fix this”

Compare that quote from Madison City Schools Superintendent Dee Fowler to Huntsville City Schools Superintendent Ann Roy Moore’s complaint that:

“In the real world, that’s not how it works,” said Huntsville Superintendent Ann Roy Moore. “You take a course, you make 95 percent, you still get an A.”

Moore must be referring to HER real world, where her poor performance is rewarded with real tax money based on a process (PEPE) that gives her a perfect evaluation despite poor scores in some areas.

Fowler was referring to Bob Jones High School, which didn’t have enough juniors from low-income families pass the reading portion of the state graduation exam.  BTW Bob Jones is the highest-ranked high school in the area according to Newsweek (surpassing Grissom).  Madison officials don’t whine that the system is unfair, they pledge to address the AYP deficiency:

“When it comes down to it, I’ve got to figure out a way to get these children to read at the proficient level,” Bob Jones Principal Robby Parker said.

The Huntsville Times published two articles on AYP, one from Challen Stephens “AYP results in Madison County serious for handful of schools in north Huntsville, one in the county” and one from Steve Campbell “Low scores keep 16 schools in Madison County from ‘adequate yearly progress’”.  Both articles make good reading (the following quotes are gleaned from both of those articles – the reporters should have done a better job of summarizing the data):

Sixteen schools… failed to meet the state’s definition of “adequate yearly progress”. 


Butler High, Johnson High, Westlawn Middle and West Mastin Lake Elementary must offer every student the chance to choose a new school.

Martin Luther King Jr. failed to see enough students read on grade level.

Grissom High, Chapman [Middle?]Whitesburg, Providence K-8, Mt. Carmel Elementary  (low special education reading or math scores — or sometimes, both).


Sparkman High School failed in several categories. 

Sparkman Ninth Grade School, Monrovia and Meridianville middle schools (low special education reading or math scores — or sometimes, both).

Hazel Green High was cited for having an 81 percent graduation rate.


Bob Jones High was cited for having low reading scores from students who get free or reduced-price lunch.


Several schools that didn’t make AYP last year made it this year. Those schools are: Lakewood Elementary (HSV), New Hope High (County), Madison County High (County), Buckhorn High (County), and Madison Cross Roads Elementary (County).


Thank goodness Democrat Mary Jane Caylor is leaving the State Board of Education:

“It really sends a very bad and confusing message to people,” said Dr. Mary Jane Caylor of the state school board.

Her attitude of saying ‘if the news is bad, blame the news’ doesn’t help fix the problem.

Bradley Byrne GOTV

From Erin at the Byrne campaign to Right On Huntsville:

The Byrne campaign is going very well in Madison County. Since your group’s endorsement, we have only felt the momentum grow in this area. The Fish Fry last Saturday was a great success; we had around 400 people attend. It was the best political event the campaign has seen to date. A big thanks to the members who helped make the event a memorable one.

As we get in the last 5 days leading up to the (first) election, we are looking for a few more people to help us ensure a Byrne Victory in North Alabama. We need volunteers to make 25 phone calls each to remind others to Get Out the Vote on June 1st. There’s a short script and a list of names; calls can be made anytime beginning Friday, May 28, and ending Tuesday, June 1, at 6 p.m.

We also need volunteers to be Election Day “cheerleaders” for Bradley throughout the day. Our first priority is to fill the 7-9 a.m. shift at 35 GOP boxes. The REALTORs are working on filling some of these shifts, but I say the more the merrier. We will also look to place people at our biggest boxes from 11:30-1:30 and 4:30-6:30. All we need you to do is stand outside and wave a sign as people pass by.

If either of the above sounds like a winner to you, please let me know ASAP at 334.546.4831 or

Bradley can’t win up here without your help. The easiest way to jump in is to come by HQ (3125 University Drive) on Monday for a Memorial Day GOTV cookout. You can make 25 calls from here and then have a hot dog and drink. It’ll be a good time. If you want to help out this weekend, we’ll be here 10-5 (at least) tomorrow and Saturday and 1-6 Sunday. I’ll also be here all day Tuesday. You are welcome to come watch the numbers here after work that day.

Madison County GOP Committee Election

From MGOP:

On June 1, voters in Madison County will have the opportunity to vote for members of the State Republican Executive Committee and members of the Madison County Republican Executive Committee…

The three contested State Republican Executive Committee positions and the candidates are:
County-at-large: Hugh McInnish and Sandra K. Schimmelpfennig
District 4, Place 1 (Gurley, New Hope area) – Rex Wilson Moon and Marcia Parsons
District 7, Place 1 (Harvest, Monrovia area) – Barbara Sikorski and Phil Williams

The ten contested Madison County Republican Executive Committee positions and the candidates are:
County-at-large: Joel P. Jaqubino and Hugh McInnish
District 4, Place 1 (southeast Huntsville) – Budd Sallo and Glenn D. Weathers
District 4, Place 3 (southeast Huntsville) – Richard T. Gibson and Lynne Matheny
District 5, Place 1 (Blossomwood area) – Robert Davis and Dean Johnson
District 11, Place 1 (south Madison area) – David Shockey and Kathy Sullivan
District 13, Place 2 (Monrovia, Harvest area) – Sarah Barbre and Greg S. Martin
District 13, Place 3 (Monrovia, Harvest area) – Chad Capps and Linda Coats
District 14, Place 3 (Meridianville, Hazel Green area) – Fred M. Segrest and Chris Stuckey
District 16, Place 2 (Chase area) – Francis Bevill and Diane B. Maywhort
District 17, Place 1 (New Hope area) – Herb Burton and Rex Wilson Moon

Joel Jaqubino and Robert Davis are Right On Huntsville leaders and worked on the Huntsville Governors Forum.  Brian posted about Chris Stuckey here and this is his response to our questionnaire (when Stuckey ran for County Commission).

Young Republicans discuss oil drilling

The Madison County Young Republicans had about 60 people attend their  meeting Tuesday night – the topic of discussion was the Deepwater Horizon oil spill and the effect on future energy policy.  Several people spoke in support of  ”drill, baby, drill” and there were just a couple who had second thoughts about the technology.  Increasing U.S. nuclear energy capacity was also mentioned a lot.  The consensus seemed to support doing both (drilling and nukes) and then more (biofuels from soybeans, peanuts, and switchgrass).

Points:  land drilling is safest, coastal drilling next safe, deepwater drilling risky.  As we improve our techniques for responsibly exploiting deepwater oil we can help make the industry safer.  No non-Western country cares as much about pollution as US.  Keep in mind that there are areas of Nigeria (and Colombia and Yemen)  that are awash in spilled oil, as much from terrorist (er, militant, er, activist) man-caused disasters as from accidents.  Do you think that India or China or Indonesia have the capability or the will to clean up a spill like Deepwater Horizon?

Another (and greater) source of oil spillage is from tankers.  US coastal shipping is regulated by the Jones Act, which has been used to require double hull tankers (note that the Exxon Valdez had a ‘partial’ double hull).  There is an international plan (MARPOL – International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution From Ships) to require all oil tankers to be double-hulled by 2026.  Good luck with that…

The point is that Western countries are better stewards of the Earth and that we can only control our piece of it – we can influence the others but we can’t do it for them.  Still we try.  Did you know that the US is paying for Brazil to develop Brazilian deepwater oil fields?  The rationale is that Brazil would be a more stable and safer trading partner than Middle Eastern countries.    

On Topic Update – here’s the photo release of the Macondo scene:


GULF OF MEXICO – The mobile offshore drilling unit Development Driller III (near) is prepared to drill a relief well at the Deepwater Horizon site May 18, 2010, as the MODU Q4000 holds position directly over the damaged blowout preventer. While the drillship Discover Enterprise (far) continues to capture oil from the ruptured riser, preparations for the possible utilization of  the “top kill” method are being made aboard the Q4000. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Patrick Kelley.

Look at the ship in the top center (Enterprise), burning off excess gas in a process known as flaring.  The containment riser feeds into that ship.  The nearest (yellow) rig is the Developmental Driller III, ready to spud the second relief well.  The middle (orange) rig Q4000 is preparing for the top kill method of high speed pumping  concrete mud into the well.


Florida Keys tar balls not linked to Deepwater Horizon – from the Joint Information Center:

The Coast Guard Marine Safety Laboratory in New London, Conn. analyzed a sampling of tar balls discovered on Florida Keys shoreline Tuesday and determined that none of the collected samples are from the Deepwater Horizon/BP oil spill.

A sampling of tar balls discovered on beaches at Fort Zachary Taylor State Park, Fla., Smathers Beach in Key West, Big Pine Key, Fla., and Loggerhead Key in the Dry Tortugas National Park, Fla. were flown by a Coast Guard HU-25 Falcon jet based in Miami, Fla., to New London, Conn. Tuesday for testing and analysis.

The results of those tests conclusively show that the tar balls collected from Florida Keys beaches do not match the type of oil from the Deepwater Horizon/BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. The source of the tar balls remains unknown at this time.


If that wasn’t enough for a Young Republican meeting, Congressional candidate Les Phillip and Ag Commission candidates John McMillan and Dorman Grace gave brief campaign speeches.

I enjoy hearing Les speak – as I’ve said before – it’s like he’s in my head and I hear my thoughts coming out of his mouth (or thoughts I wish I had).  Phillip said that the US needs nuclear power - noting that the Navy safely runs the largest number of reactors in the world – also noting that France gets 80% (IIRC) of it’s power from nukes.  Phillip said that the most important task before the next Congress was to kill Obamacare, because it is the camel’s nose under the tent to socialism.  Phillip cited the Federal takeover of the student loan industry as an example – originally the feds said that they were just providing competition to the banks – now the Feds control the entire business.   This illustrates what I like about Les, he knows not only that a policy is good or bad, he knows why because he knows the history (NOTE: Mo Brooks is much the same in that respect – I enjoy learning from both of them). 

Google Clement Attlee to see how a socialist didn’t let a crisis (WW2) go to waste and how Britain became a socialist country (hint: national health care).

Ag Commission candidate Dale Peterson might as well have been there – his video, now known nationally as “The greatest political as ever”, certainly had a presence there.  From the comments:

Dale Peterson doesn’t get out of bed in the mornings; he pushes the earth away from him a little.

Dorman Grace and John McMillan both addressed a point made in Peterson’s ad (Grace tried to play it off, saying he’s focused on issues; McMillan reiterated the Ethics claim).  Here’s some background from commenter “Nick”:

Dorman Grace, GOP candidate for the office of Commissioner of Agriculture and Industries, has had at least two ethics complaints filed against him…

When contacted, Grace did not deny having received the contributions in question, but said he had just received the letter on Friday from the Ethics Commission informing him of the allegations against him. “We received the letter late Friday,” Grace said. “We’re going through it looking at the situation. I’ve never been in politics before, so we need to go through this. We
will be transparent,” Grace said. When asked if he would return the contributions if they are found to be illegal,
Grace said: “That’s possible. They (the commission) haven’t told us what to do. “Right now, it’s just an allegation. At this point I don’t have enough information. We have a week to respond, which we will do. “We’ve raised money all over the state. We’ll go back now and look at everybody,” Grace said.

More candidates:

Representative (and Marine) Howard Sanderford (incumbent candidate House 20),  Senate 8 candidate Shad McGill, Senate 2 candidate (and Marine) Bill Holtzclaw, House 20 candidate David Pinkleton, HSV City Council candidate Jon Hitt, and HSV City Council candidate James Lomax.

MCGOP – 15 May 2010

The room was packed this morning for the Madison County GOP breakfast – there’s lots of great energy out there, we’ll see if that energy manifests itself in voter turnout in the primary elections on June 1.

I was lucky enough to find a chair, and got a great seat between Huntsville City Councilman Mark Russell and Huntsville Times ace reporter Challen Stephens.  The more I speak with Russell, the more I’m pleased that I vote for him.  We spoke about the Police Advisory Commission, and he explained the background of why the Council supports the creation of the Commission – and why the Bill Kling ‘compromise’ is a good solution.  We also talked about the Clinton Avenue ‘Parking Garage and Affordable Downtown Housing for Young Professionals’ – thank goodness that project got put on hold. Here’s Challen Stephens’ article “Huntsville city no longer planning to build lofts to lure young professionals downtown”:

…City Councilman Mark Russell, who represents the area, said there always remained too many unanswered questions about the city’s role in creating buildings to be finished and possibly operated by private developers.

Challen Stephens does good work for the Times as “The Watchdog”.  Here’s another one of his recent articles, “Huntsville Housing Authority construction plans questioned”:

One of the volunteers who oversees the Huntsville Housing Authority broke ranks on Monday, voting against plans to build the $17 million Gateway Place senior center downtown.

Specifically, board member Dick Fountain said he’s concerned about millions of federal dollars passing through Huntsville on their way to private companies in Louisville, Ky., and Jacksonville, Fla…

The construction will cost about $11 million, Widman said, and the rest would cover soft costs, such as architect fees and engineering fees. Some members of the audience on Monday questioned those figures.

Don Spurlin, a Republican candidate for the state Senate, told the board that a third of the budget shouldn’t be going to soft costs and overhead. After doing the math to come up with a price tag of $200,000 per apartment, Spurlin simply said: “That seems like a lot.”


The main speakers this morning were Bradley Byrne and Roy Moore.  Here’s a summary of their speeches:

“Do you want Paul Hubbert to pick your next Governor?”
“It is time to take our State back from Paul Hubbert, the Vice Chairman of the Democratic Party.”
“… largest public corruption case in the Nation is going on in Birmingham.”
“we have the weakest ethics laws”
“focus on jobs”
“roads and bridges to support BRAC”
“will do what it takes to fight for the Constellation project”
“Right On Huntsville endorsement”
“I will not back down.”

“Obama is a socialist”
“everything about the Constitution is being undermined”
“we’re going to change the State legislature”
“smaller Government, fewer taxes”
“graduated from West Point”
“you need somebody who knows about the military” (to lead the Guard and Reserve – that line got applause)
“get somebody who will say one thing and do it”

Challen Stephens of The Huntsville Times wrote “Moore criticizes Obama, Byrne rails against Hubbert”:

Byrne gave a fiery, if short, speech, lambasting Hubbert, the head of the teachers’ Alabama Education Association…

Byrne has recently been attacked as too liberal in a TV ad sponsored by the True Republican PAC. Hubbert has publicly acknowledged that AEA provided the money for the ad…

“Barack Obama is a socialist,” he (Moore) said…

The only position of Obama’s that he agrees with, said Moore, is the creation of a playoff system for college football. But Moore offered only the most general proposals for his plans, saying he favored smaller government, lower taxes and less regulations.


I got to meet Facebook friend James Lomax in real life.  Lomax is running for Huntsville City Council District 3,  along with Jonathan Hitt, Barry Pendergraft, and John Olshefski.  I’m impressed with his campaigning efforts and that he attends Council meetings.  Attending Council meetings, Board meetings, citizen meetings, etc is time-consuming and I might add kinda boring at times… but it is the life of politicians.

MCGOP – 17 April 2010

Sorry for the lack of content lately – it’s Spring fever.

I attended Saturday’s Madison County GOP breakfast – it was packed – we even had to set up extra tables to handle all the guests.  The big attractions were the AL05 GOP Congressional candidates – incumbent Congressman Parker Griffith, Mo Brooks and Les Phillip.  Here are some highlights from their brief remarks:

Mo Brooks – he’s got a “track record”.  On taxes – “families are better able to spend money than Government”.  He led the fight to kill Amendment 1 (tax increase).  Votes for tort reform.  Believes in Capitalism.  America is operating with “unsustainable budget deficits”.   Brooks will fight “Socialism” in DC.  We need a balanced budget amendment. Health care – kill, repeal, replace.

Parker Griffith – some of his first votes were to oppose the Lily Ledbetter act (which passed – it’s bad) and Cap and Trade (also bad – volcanoes release more CO2 than all the cars ever made – plus think of the trading system as Enron run by Chicago cronies).  “Faced down every Democrat initiative”. Opposes the Democrats “hard-left Socialist agenda”.  Griffith said he will “wake up a Republican on June 2, win or lose”.  He mentioned his appointment to the House Energy and Commerce Committee (which is a plum appointment) and suggested that he may be in line for an appointment to the Appropriations Committee.    Griffith is “committed to making the 5th District Republican from now on”.  “I am the American Dream”.

Les Phillip – “we are at war” – liberals and progressives have been subverting the Constitution (applause).  “We’ve allowed people who don’t believe in the American system… or God… to take power”.  “The Government is out of control”.  “These people don’t know who we are… these colors don’t run”.  “We must take it back”.  Phillip “swore an oath to fight… we have domestic enemies now”.  “Liberty is worth fighting and dying for”.  Phillip was the only speaker to get a (semi) standing ovation.


WVNN’s Dale Jackson’s account of his exchange with Parker Griffith is accurate.  I witnessed it, but I didn’t hear the preacher’s comment.


For those who think that Les Phillip’s rhetoric was over the top – I’ve heard the same (and more) from many people – Socialism is an existential threat to America as we know it – people recognize that.


I attended the Tea Party on April 15th (5PM) – the Times reported 2500 people.  The sound system was much better this year.  Lots of friendly people.

At 6PM, I dropped by the Rock the Vote Party at the Roundhouse – there were about 100 people there (appropriate, since IIRC it was sponsored by the Committee of 100).  I heard the crowd grew to about 200 later.  This seemed to be a mostly Democrat event.  I got to see City Councilmen Bill Kling and Will Culver.  I talked with Kling about the Police Advisory Council (or whatever it’s called) and asked him if this scheme had ever succeeded in a city (no answer) – in my opinion it politicizes the Police Department and results in higher crime (see Cleveland or Washington DC or many other failures).  To be fair I haven’t seen Kling’s proposal but I’m tired of our City trying to implement failed policies (years after they’ve been proven to fail).  What gets me is that Kling is usually one of the good guys.