Tuesday, November 28, 2006


It used to be predictable that 90% of our armed robberies would happen between late October and Christmas week. That's changed locally some. I see from the Chicago news they still have a spike this time of year. Wonder why it holds up there, but not here.

Monday, November 27, 2006


The ever-polite, ever-diligent Charlie Griffith passed away over the weekend. Basically, Charlie invented local TV public affairs interviewing. He was a serious minded guy and his demeanor might have been a little bit dry but it was underlain by a lightning wit and an "on target" sense of humor. In the mid-70's there was a continuing brouhaha about whether topless bars should rec'v liquor licenses. I was on a panel Charlie brought in for a TV discussion, prosecutor, defense lawyer, preacher. The decorum while we were on the air was impeccable but Charlie's humor during the breaks had us gulping to catch our breath and gently brushing laughter tears from our eyes (yes, including the preacher) as we came back on the air.

He could also get somebody self-important ratcheted down to a more manageable level fairly quickly. He once had a guest on who had recently been elected to public office. Charlie asked a simple "yes" or "no" question. The guest authored a long, pretentious explanation of something pretty basic which actually confused the issue. At the end of the tortured answer, the guest said "does that explain it?" Deadpan, Charlie said of the convoluted anwer, "I'm glad you cleared that up for us!" Don't know whether the guy knew he been needled but he certainly behaved better after that.

Quincy was a better place for Charlie's service. If I can use your words, My Friend, at the end of each interview "Thank you for joining us today."

UMRBlog's condolences to his precious family.


Sunday, November 26, 2006


We all worry about the CBD and, no doubt, there are some issues there. Right now, the all-important 100 block of N. 4th St., across from the lovely, decorated park is holding its own. Park Bench, Shoe Store and Wine and Cheese bar all great contributors to the nice urban, quaint-but-hip look.

Not exactly a wine and cheese guy but good luck to all the classy merchants there. You do the Lincoln-Douglas site proud!

Thursday, November 23, 2006


For the fourth consecutive Thanksgiving, hot turkey meals were delivered to american troops in unstable, still hostile combat zones. It's hard to watch our young people in harm's way just because nobody bothered to develop alternative exit strategies.

Not arguing for phoney "phased redeployment" and not relitigating the decision to go to war in Iraq. Just saying it's never to late to consider "Go Smart!" as an option.

Yes, it is always old men who send young men (and now women) off to war. That is somber but not sickening. When old men send young people off to war first without defining "victory" and giving our young people the tools to achieve it, that is sickening.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006


Let's start in praise of Charlie Rangel for opening this debate. His idea is that, if there's a true, egalitarian draft, there won't be a rush to "optional" wars by the "fortunate Dads". Good Point, as far as it goes.

Due to a multiplicity of factors and culminating in the utter lack of trust in Nixon (although he damn sure didn't start the Vietnam caper), the Congress, reflecting the clear will of the American People instituted a mandatory lottery and ultimately went to all volunteer forces. Nobody believes that trust in the executive branch has been reestablished. A draft won't work unless and until that warm, fuzzy 1950's attitude toward gov't has been reestablished a draft will just build resentment and alienate young people.

We still do have mandatory registration, which is a form of stand-by draft. There is no national stomach for more than that.

I would love to see two years of mandatory service to country (Not necessarily military service--could be teaching at the Cherokee nation, being an orderly at a VA hospital, doing data entry at FEMA) but a uniform, "no exceptions" military draft will eventually be seen as a way for the "fortunate sons" to use better doctors or better lawyers or reserve connections. There will be no public support for it. That's kind of key in a democracy.

I applaud Charlie's attempt but I'm not for it going any further. (Cue Fogerty in the background.)


Tuesday, November 21, 2006


"In 1974 we got to the Final Four once again and could have won our eighth national championship in a row. However, we lost to North Carolina State, the eventual champion, in the semifinals 80-77 in a double overtime. Our championship streak was stopped at seven in a row."

"Twelve months later, on March 29, 1975, we came back and won the national championship, our tenth overall, by defeating Kentucky 92-85 in the finals. As we stood waiting for the awards ceremony to begin in the San Diego Sports Arena, a longtime UCLA booster rushed up to my side and grabbed my arm. As he began wildly shaking my hand he shouted in my ear, 'We did it! We did it! You let us down last year, Coach, but we got'em this year!' "

John Wooden, Wooden, Contemporary Books, 1997, pp. 81-2.

Thanks to my friends at Delancey Place for calling this to my attention

Monday, November 20, 2006


......that the race for Katherine Harris' old Congressional Seat is Not only in an intractable recount situation but that there is no humanly verifiable audit trail to recount the results? Only difference is this one gets thrashed out by the Congress, not by the Supreme Court.

Colin Cowherd is right. Florida is a greasefire.



For now, let's skip the part about where they will play him.

This kind of signing only makes sense in two contexts. First, if you are intentionally trying to make your team impossible to sell, jack up payroll--TribCo saving itself from its impulse to sell off "parts". Second, a high impact offensive player helps a team with starting pitching, meaning you only make this deal knowing you still have an excellent chance to tie up two good starters (Wood's a flyer. Miller is one, Hill is .5, Z is one. Short 2.5 starting pitchers. Long way to go.).

Also you have to believe that they have thoroughly vetted his birth certificate. Remember George Bell? Turns out he was older than Cool Papa Bell.


Sunday, November 19, 2006


You may have been able to tell by my frequent comments about Ivies in the White House, that I don't exactly worship at the NYT editorial page. This weekend, the nice folks who run that page outdid themselves with Ivory Tower lack of understanding of the partisan legislative process in our Congress.

I'm paraphrasing here but, I'm not making this up. They say the Dem's in the house are in disarray because the guy that Pelosi backed for second in command (Murtha--that flaming peacenik) didn't win. Now the party is split and Pelosi showed bad judgment in not avoiding the caucus fight and Hoyer (My name is "Steny" but my friends call me "Steny") will not advance her agenda. They seem to think her agenda has to do with health care for homosexual Orcas if they have gone through a civil ceremony and are employed by the City of San Francisco, anyhow, but I digress......

She made herself STRONGER by backing Murtha. Murtha managed her last two caucus campaigns (Whip and Minority Leader). She owed him her loyalty. That's the way it works in intraparty caucuses. By backing Murtha till the last dog died, she showed anybody else with whom she might make a future deal (Including Tanning Parlor Boehner) that she would deal and "stick". There is no more precious commodity for Congressional Leader.

When Reagan got to town, Speaker O'Neil couldn't stand him. It appeared to be mutual. But O'Neil told Reagan that his programs would get through Congress as long as they didn't cut SS and Medicare. The Speaker also told Reagan why he was going along, "When this turns to crap, I want it to be all your fault!" He did, they did and it was. (That's not my opinion, that's Reagan's Budget Director's opinion.) O'Neil and Reagan became friends because they bost recognized the other's word was more than nominally good. They'd work their respective sides to come through on a promise of delivery. O'Neil became a beloved, National Politician and Character, partly because he was charming but mostly because he was a "Sticker".

Pelosi Just Increased her "Sticker" factor. That will make her stronger, which in turn will make the majority dems stronger.

Why is it that elite editorial types can not figure that out? It's been so for at least 150 years.


Friday, November 17, 2006


Airport Director Mark Hanna has been hired at the Springfield Airport. A great and well-deserved compliment to Mark and an indirect compliment to the City of Quincy. Be well and do well, Mark. You are a distinguished public servant and one suspects Springfield won't be your last stop, either.

Thursday, November 16, 2006


All the futurists who are actually scientists say that cell phone towers will soon be obsolete because we will get our wireless phone signals from satellites. If you've ever used a satphone, you know the service is a lot better and the price is rapidly dropping. Seems inevitable.

Why then, with the same level of satellite service available to our TV sets would we choose to purchase our signals through some under(and over)ground cable network? Moreover, why would we buy something like that from an organization that's rude and unresponsive. Supermoreover, why would we buy something like that from an organization that continues to subtract from our service and tell us it's an improvement? I suppose they will throw in beta vcr's soon.

If I were in a dinosaur cable business that's slowly dying and whose death is inevitable due to market and technology forces, why would I intentionally piss off the Mayor of a city where I have a franchise?

How interesting it is to watch while an entire industry as well as its local representative slits its collective throat with a rusty, dull knife.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006


Remember Trent Lott, the former Senate Majority Leader? Remember when Lott said something perhaps a bit intemperate about the Old Dixiecrat Leader (at a celebration for Strom)? Remember how some folks thought it was racist? Remember how that sleazy opportunist, Bill Frist, jumped into contention for the Majority Leader Job? Remember it took less than two days for McFlightsuit to completely cut Lott loose and leave him twisting in the wind?

Well, kiddies, guess who's the Republican Leader in the Senate again. (Hold onto that confederate money--The south will rise again). Yeah, that would be, uh, Trent Lott.

Now, I'm just thinking out loud here but it just doesn't seem likely that Lott is going to spend a lot of political capital defending President "Mission Accomplished" and Uncle Dick. Lott started out as a Democrat congressman. He could end up as a centrist policeman of a runamuck White House. Keep in mind, Lott's also a Katrina victim and a secondary victim of Shrubby's pals in the insurance industry ("It might be wind and it might be water damage but it's whatever you don't have coverage for, Senator.). I don't imagine he's bubbling over with goodwill for the establishment safety net.

Lott's first course at this fine meal of politics was preparing (and being willing) to impeach Nixon.
Wouldn't it be ironic if dessert was giving the same kind of rapid response assistance to Bush that Bush gave Lott during Katrina and During the Strom-Flub?

Stuff just happens, doesn't it?


In 2004, a realtor named Melissa Bean from Republican Heaven (Barrington, Illinois) accidentally got herownself elected to congress. She had some money, had some friends with some money and shoplifted a seat where the repub had not exactly distinguished himself.

So she was an accident and it was going to get fixed this time. The Repubs were going to reclaim this seat. Never mind that her GOP opponent out of a mass primary was a Dufus and never mind that she was on track to raise obscene amounts of money. She had no chance.

Melissa Bean not only had money. She had message discipline. She didn't want to talk about Iraq and she didn't want to talk about Rummy and she didn't want to talk about Social Security. She thumped on "fix the drug card--open up competitive bidding!" She romped and she's going back to Congress.

Cut to mid-November. A recent poll of folks who voted in the recent national mid-term elections (Including GOP voters) says 61% of all voters expect the democrat majority will improve their lives in the near term. In other words, they're expecting something they can see, touch and feel before the snow melts.

Fixing the drug card does that. It also brings AARP into the dem's caucus plugging the bill and activates the most reliable voters, old people. There is no other contender. First order of business is FIX THE FREAKING DRUG CARD. Listen to Melissa. She's tuned into the will of the people.


Tuesday, November 14, 2006


.......Everyone in the energy industry will be laid off. Energy will not be as available as it is in Basra. Your pets will freeze to death during the day and there will be brownouts on Super Bowl Sunday!

Gee. ya think somebody will leap into the private market and figure out how to make a profit selling energy to consumers? [Yes, I know, Gov'tal price controls are stupid--but so is lifting them suddenly once they have been in place for a few years.]

Monday, November 13, 2006


The wily Lawrence O'Brien once explained there are no final victories in politics.

Remember 1994? How'd that work out for 'em. Newt got confused (he apparently also got a little, but that's another story) and became Bill Clinton's poodle. Then zipper maintenance problems led us to the comatose Hastert.

Lesson? We gotta get this right. That means no side trips. Here's what I'd do if I were Speaker Pelosi:

First, and I do mean first, I'd put up for a vote a modification of the current Medicare drug plan. Only change would be to adopt the mass-bargaining feature of the VA plan. The Repubs would be scared not to vote for it and most of the Dems ran on it. Hell, Melissa Bean didn't really talk about anything else. We'd be heroes among old people and AARP wouldn't lift a finger against such a bill. It can be law by April and in effect by '08 (wouldn't that be handy?)

Second, put up for vote a "sense of the body" resolution, a proposal that charged the defense department and State Department within 60 days to promulgate a set of measurable, metric benchmarks that would define the time when "victory" had been reached in Iraq and we could safely redeploy. Everybody is tired of McFlightSuit talking about "victory" without ever once giving us a picture of what it's supposed to look like. Again the repubs can't be against metrics.

Third, ask the President for leave to have an ex-officio congress member at the "principals" meetings of the war council (History is on your side, Roosevelt and Truman both did this) and appoint Rep. Jane Harman, the toughest, smartest woman in Government since Golda Meir. The move protects the president from criticism for being secretive and builds trust among the congressmen of both parties who have become totally estranged from this administration. You won't find a repub who will oppose this publicly.

Yes, we'll get to immigration pretty soon and to funding the caucuses again but these three things will avoid a mushroom cloud early.

Majority Parties in Congress don't plan to fail, but they damn sure fail to plan! Let's not do that.


Sunday, November 12, 2006


OK, College Football experts, assume the Piggies beat Miss. St. and LSU (big chore), then take anemic offense Florida in the SEC Championship game. Who is better positioned and more deserving to play the Winner of the Ohio State Game in the National Championship? SoCal will have two losses by then. ND will have run out of service academies to play. The Big 12 will be having seminars on recruiting offensive linemen and Rutgers will be, well, Rutgers.

Can the Champion of the SEC be denied (Well, yes, I remember about Auburn a few years ago, but that's different--It's easy to disrespect a guy named Toooooooooberville!)?

And we got a Heismann candidate and depth at QB--and only one cupcake on the sched (like all SEC teams, @ least one is required)

Whooo, Sooooooie, Pig!



(There is so much to write about at this time that I may precook some things and put a couple of them up a day--depends on my day job).

First, let me concede on a national basis, the GOP GOTV "72 Hour" effort is really well organized and based on an accountability model that truly works. We've paid it the best compliment we can. We've tried to steal most of it. In the suburban southwest and in the "redneck riviera" it is pure killer stuff.

But Rover said they had it on line in every county in the US. Maybe, but in Adams County it fell around seventy one and a half hours short. They did the impossible here, they made ours, which was not bad, but not our best, look really good. We were on track for about 20,000 ballots. The great weather probably accounted for another thousand and the turnout was 22,5xx. for the most part the extra 1500 were ours.

I went to a number of polling places and never saw a poll watcher from the State GOP, Spike, McCoy or anybody else on their side.

I did find some evidence of a very slapdash democrat voter suppression attempt by the GOP or the Greens (not sure which but I can't imagine why the Greens would want to do that), but no effort to mobilize their own voters. (NOTE TO KARL: I did talk to one ill-tempered, drunk democratic voter who went for your pitch "they're all crooks. They're all in your pocket. Just don't vote for any of 'em". Probably saved him a DUI getting to the polls. Public service, nice job.

So, Andrea Zinga, please note, Rover & Co. kissed you off before election day. Hastert wouldn't know a GOTV if one bit him in the fanny and Mr. Reynolds, your campaign head, was busy trying to save his own rear end in New York. Good thing you and your buddies could count on the White House to be there till the last dog died.

Our GOTV got the able adults out. We had some other technical problems like........Oh, wait......that'd be telling, wouldn't it? I'll just save it for the Chairman

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Russ Feingold (Yale Grad) has announced he will not be running for president........

In a related Story, Al Witte, Bob Behnen, Bob Nall, John Cauthorn and Billy Bennett are also not running for president and their intentions are about as relevant to the presidency in '08 as Feingold's.

I like Russ Feingold but.....well, you've heard my rant before on this topic.


Saturday, November 11, 2006


Thank you for the calls and emails about my Election Night Tee Shirt and gear. Most of the night I was in the bunker. When I was out of the bunker it was mostly covered by my fatigue jacket. A souvenir from a previous election night, it says "ECONOMIC HOLOCAUST RAPID RESPONSE TEAM 2001". There are only five copies in existence. Since a Japanese Collector offered me $50,000.00, I limit the number of times I wear it.

If I have to explain it to you, it won't be funny.

The Hat Says "Camp Echo, Iraq" and is a gift from a dear friend who served there. It has no electoral significance.

The button on the back of the hat says "Jesus Loves you.....everybody else thinks you're an @$$hole. " It ended up on my fatigue jacket during one very successful midterm election and now I wear it for all midterm election nights, not city elections and not presidential generals. No, I'm not superstitious--just try to repeat success patterns.

The earpiece was just a standard bluetooth because I needed two hands in the bunker. I'm not fond of them in normal circumstances.

No, I'm not prepared to discuss this year's souvenir Tee yet.



.....in arms could use a "thanks" or an "attaboy" today. Especially the VN-era guys and gals. We were a little short on appreciation when got back. If you're neighbor, or uncle or somebody is a vet, just say "thanks for your service" today.


Friday, November 10, 2006


I know Don Rumsfeld slightly. He is (and this is not an unusual combination) a brilliant guy who is a totally dysfunctional listener. Still, in the largest picture, he is a victim of 9/11.

SECDEF came on with one mission: To see that the force was made modernized and more mobile ("on a dime" warfare). He recognized that we where not fighting Warsaw Pact Phalanxes and we had to prepared for wars in which speed, air surpremacy and advers condition technology were paramount. He went to work to give us that kind of force. Keep in mind, neither Rummy nor Bush expected to see much improvement in 8 years. The idea was that the next president and the one after that would have a force worthy of the 21st century. It is my belief Don Rumsfeld was the right man for that job.

Then 9/11 happened and Rummy was forced to try to conduct two wars while modernizing his force. The jobs were utterly incompatible. Conducting actual wars was not Rummy's long suit anyhow. He was a much more long range planner than a COO. Now add to that the fact that he's a terminally bad listener and given to smart-ass remarks and you've got an untenable situation. Yes, he was the prisoner of his own device. He advocated for the Iraq war, in a fashion, and that played out of his comfort zone. Still, when we have a near bionic force in 2026, somebody should take a minute to thank Don Rumsfeld, who had the vision to see that it was the only way we'd remain the hyper-power.

Hate him as a symbol of American Imperialism, if you must. But please give the man his due. His mission coming in was to give the USA a force worthy of the mid-21st century and, if it happens, it will be due his vision. Even scapegoats have good qualities.


Thursday, November 09, 2006


McDonough County Sheriff -- Dem insiders tampered in the GOP primary to select the weakest opponent for the Dem. incumbent. Rule One of primaries is, NEVER, as in NEVER, teach democrats to vote Republican. They might keep doing it. There is no Rule Two. Of course, the selected weaker opponent whomped! We have many instances of this in our local party. It always has serious and unintended, and sometimes unperceived, consequences. On the merits, apparently the "issue" in this race was "morale" in the Department. When voters buy that one, there's always something more, something deeper. Most voters don't give a rat's rear end about gov't empoyees' morale.

Adams County Treasurer -- Some races just aren't there. Lisa was, and can still be, a Charlie Williams-level campaigner. Her test will be whether she stays active and supports other candidates. If she does, she'll eventually kick that door in and get elected to something. A personality this bright and outlook this positive will ultimately be recognized--but only if she stays in the game. Even Charlie had to lose some to win some. In fairness to all the good people who helped her, she also needs to get a little more balanced advice on media use and get comfortable with issues. Most unsuccessful countywide candidates just walk away from their party. My prescription for her future success would be that she find an aldermanic race to help with, then a countywide race, all the while forming her own views of how to more effectively use media, internet and direct mail to promote herself. If she pulls up her pucker string and does that, she won't be denied. This as good a candidate at working an event as I have ever seen. Up there with John Knuppel and Charlie Williams. Credit to Jean for a technically sound campaign under difficult circumstances. TV was a little strange but radio and newspaper were top notch. Also, sometimes an incumbent doesn't get too substantive and accidentally hand her opponent an issue. Jean walked this line beautifully. Jean knew the burden was on Lisa to give a compelling reason for change and that was gonna be tough. Good, energetic, ethical campaign on both sides.

Adams County Sheriff -- Jon McCoy worked the heck out of this one! He was everywhere. Technically, I had a problem with his newspaper ads. Far too busy, too many credentials and issues. Your newspaper ads shouldn't look like your campaign brochure. Jon had some tough resource allocation questions at the end, balancing radio/cable TV/Network TV/ and newspaper. He pushed a lot of chips into network TV and his TV ad was an introductory ad, not a closing ad. Finally, his otherwise energetic campaign had not begun its media phase when early voting started. EV and absentees combined were just south of ten percent. You can't abandon the opportunity to pitch ten percent of the voting public. Having said all that, this is another election that wasn't there. Jon put up much of his time and money to give people a choice. That's a noble thing. If there were no willing challengers, there would be no meaningful election process. No significant constituency was mad at Brent. Brent ran a nice race that I can't objectively critique. (Just to speak the unspeakable, it probably didn't hurt that he is a Roman Catholic, either.) Probably the most controversial decision in the campaign was Brent's radio ad. In my memory, nobody's run the same radio ad, without any other ad as supplementation, for five straight weeks. We did. It was a conscious decision and part of message discipline. Whatever else we had, we had message discipline. I have some other comparative thoughts on this campaign but I don't think I'll put out a cookbook for Brent's next opponent, if any.

Adams County Politics, media--There has been a sea change in the Minimum Daily Requirement of campaign promotional activity for a County Candidate. Running for office in this county, just adequately, is now a $55,000.00 undertaking. If a candidate doesn't spend that much, he or she is leaving something out. One of the principal expenses is newspaper, which has gone up as a percentage of the whole campaign. We've already seen newspaper ad "season" shrink. It may soon be like Bloomington and Springfield, where significant display ads are just beyond a local campaign. Until it does, folks are going to have to make hard choices about how to prorate the shortfall. For the most part, candidates are cutting direct mail or saving money on direct mail by using canned mailers. They are also not featuring a meaningful internet presence. Only one local candidate this time had a Web Page and it was not dynamic and was pretty limited. I don't criticize anyone for skipping that step because we have no empirical data on the untility of the internet as a LOCAL campaign tool. For most county offices, the cost of the campaign is more than a year's salary for the office. Since there are no natural interest groups for County Treasurer, for example, the natural tendency is to have middle class folks avoid running for office and more connected or wealthy people to step up. This tendency is not exactly a blow for representative government but the cost of a run is nobody's fault. I see the day where two candidates might have "non-agression" pacts, no network TV, no Whig, for example, to enable ordinary folks to run for office. Make no mistake, the days of the $7500.00 campaign for Coroner are over.

Whig advertising and layout staff--I've produced a lot of advertising for a lot of candidates in a lot of elections. Occasionally, there have been problems with turnaround time, moving deadlines and even disclosure to the other side. This election cycle, the folks at the Whig were outstanding in all respects. This department has a new department head and a new structure and the improvement is palpable. From a satisfied customer, ad staff, just keep doin' what you're doin'. You may be expensive but you do everything you can to be WORTH it.

Saving Todd Duesterhaus for later.

Brown County Sheriff --Two really good guys here. I hope the challenger doesn't feel badly. The people just went for the sworn peace officer. They did not reject Mr. Jennings, a highly respected man in his home county and beyond. This is one where nobody came out of it the lesser.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006


Preliminary information from both parties and media exit pollsters indicate that 25% of folks under 30 voted. That's up 7% from the last mid-term election. Only thing I can see that changed is the way folks pick up information. Almost 80% of householders under 30 haveinternet access. More e-info seems to equal more participation for the young e-consumer.

Of course there may be some other reasons but this is a big move in decades-long pattern of lethargy.

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Tuesday, November 07, 2006


..........Permit me to share a few thoughts:

First, Jon McCoy is a good man. No matter what the outcome of the election, he will be as valued a friend on Wednesday a.m. as he was before this process. I was proud to support Sheriff Fischer but equally proud that Jon is my good friend.

Second, Jil Tracy is a very good person and actually a fine attorney as well. She was actually served poorly by not having an opponent. It would have been better for her to sharpen her sword and show her abilities in the context of a hotly contested race.

Third, For my journalist friends, you were used with this "300 signs" story. The "Reward" was fair game. Not back-checking the facts as represented to you by partisans, was not.

Fourth, Perhaps the national media could figure out that in the last few days before the election "It all hinges on turnout" is not exactly Dhali Lama "meaning of life" stuff. The rest of the country has known this since their first student council election. It is not a scoop.

Fifth, I think the Quincy Political Blogosphere has hit its stride. Different folks make different kinds of contribution. We're all learning on the fly. Pundit, Oracle, Fire, OQ, Joe, Drew, Good on ya', mates.

Sixth, shool board elections are coming up. In Dist. 172, it could be our most important electoral cycle is in front of us.

Last, God Bless all the great folks who serve as election judges. There's a national shortage of election judges and Adams County is blessed with a decent number of honest and skilled folks. This is a credit to both political parties and our County Clerks, past and present.

Good Night.....Into the Bunker I go to Hunker....Carpal Tunnel, here I come!

Monday, November 06, 2006


Nobody will ever give a better postgame interview after a loss than Coach Connell. Humble, Responsible, Sportsmanlike. I was as deeply impressed as I was disappointed at the loss. Way to go, Coach. You're the kind of man who should be leading young people.

Sunday, November 05, 2006


It's probably just me but it seems incongruous to sell oneself as a big, tough crime fighter, half of the "dynamic duo" and then whine on local media that some big meanie has stolen some of your yard signs. I missed the TV spot but I honestly thought the message on my machine that the GOP candidate for Sheriff took part in such silliness was a joke. But, as they said in "Blazing Saddles", "It's Twooooo. Twoooooooo." Just to be clear, I'm not saying anything bad about the candidate's character or manhood, just his judgment. Didn't he play this out before he did it? In a Law Enforcement job voters are looking for a protector, not a victim.

Just another couple of days. Can it get any weirder? I imagine there'lll be a new TV commercial in NE Missouri tomorrow accusing Wes Shoemyer of sneaking into Quincy and stealing yard signs.

Saturday, November 04, 2006


"I never had sexual relations with that.....uh.....man!"

Haven't we seen this script before?

The fellow seems to have a nice family and a good heart. I hope he gets his poop in a group sometime in the future. I also hope he hasn't compromised his health or that of his wife.

When we put a mortal man so far "above" us other mortals, it puts him danger of falling from a high place. Swaggart, Bakker, even Jack Welch. We're all imperfect. The high flyers just fall harder and more publicly. They're not hypocrites, they're just flawed human beings, just like the rest of us. Our flaws may come in different spheres, but we've all got 'em.

Get well, Pastor. Remember the tale of Icarus and don't fly so high next time.


Friday, November 03, 2006


How about this one....stay with me now.....we put the recipe for an offensive nuclear device on the internet and then we....get this!.....use the POWER OF THE INTERNET to track down the people who click on it!

Now never mind that he House Intelligence Committee, the CIA, the FBI and the Defense Department all think it's a bad idea, we're doin' it because it's a "daid or alive" "Mission Accomplished" West Texas kind of thang! Is this great or what?

(Host's note: Could we please, please, please have a president who didn't go to an eastern school. Just once, let's have a leader with perhaps a public education background, University of Kansas would be fine, Minnesota OK--Spare me the Skull and Bones guys, just once.)

Thursday, November 02, 2006



would be an excellent vote. Leave the rest of your bullets in the gun!

Wednesday, November 01, 2006


I've always admired Red Auerbach but I guess I never really thought seriously about why until we lost him this week. Three main things come to mind:

First, he only cared about the quality of a person's character and ability to contribute, not his race or national origin. In the 40's and 50's in Mass., that remarkable in and of itself;

Second, he viewed individuals as important only to the extent they could help his organization. Potential didn't matter. Even spectactualar effort didn't matter. All that mattered what whether that person advanced the goals of the team. If they did, that person was recognized and rewarded.

Finally, he tried to simplify everything his organization attempted. He had no need to be viewed as a genius. He knew simple concepts were easier to teach and retain than complexities. Who among us hasn't appreciated a teacher like that?

Our society needs another Red. I hope he or she arrives soon. Thanks, Red. It was a damn good show.