Sunday, July 24, 2005

Are we a little more relaxed this morning?

I hope so. I've even spoken with the person who left the voicemail, who said he was kidding. Given the circumstances, I believe him, and we're good.

However, the sleep has brought a scene from THE GODFATHER to mind. In the scene, which has occurred right after the attempted assassination of Vito Corleone, the man who ordered it, Virgil Sollozzo, is talking to the Godfather's consigliere, Tom Hagen..

Let's face it, Tom, and all due respect,

the Don, rest in peace, was -- slippin'. Ten years ago could I have gotten to him?

Well -- now he's dead. He's dead, Tom, and nothing can bring him back.

Of course, he wasn't dead, and he would go on for a while, but he was irreparably weakened.

In our case, the Don isn't dead, he's just retired and moved to Florida. How many of you think that what happened yesterday could have happened if Harold Ford SENIOR were still around and active in Shelby County politics?

Hell, even the Commercial Appeal is wondering if the Ford era is coming to an end in their Sunday editions before wandering off into an issue of how Tennessee Waltz may have hurt the party.

One of the more accurate comments in the piece was made by David Upton:

David Upton, a Democratic Party activist in Shelby County, doesn't expect many voters to change their partisan affiliations just because of the indictments, particularly since the indicted officials haven't yet been found guilty of any crimes.

"It (party loyalty) is bigger than that,'' Upton said. "It's not going to change people's partisan views."

I agree; they don't change which party to support, but they do change who's running it, and I keep saying that this is where Tennessee Waltz made a difference. I believe that a
person in innocent until proven guilty, but YOU HAVE TO AVOID EVEN THE APPEARANCE OF IMPROPRIETY.

So, enough on yesterday, flame away, but don't make it personal.


Randa Spears said...

I agree, enough.

I too, have received a call regarding my comment which follows Steve's previous blog. I was asked to either pull my comments or clarify my statements. I won’t pull or retract my comments, but out of respect to the caller, I will clarify.

The caller took what I said personally and thought others might as well. I was speaking in generalities. The benefit of that? The ability to express my opinions without making personal attacks.

Please let me reiterate my most important point.
We will be successful in the future if we all keep our eye on the big picture. Democratic success. We will be successful if we join together and get to work.

Success is possible, but we have to MAKE it happen.

BD Friend said...

I appreciate your comments today and yesterday, Steve, and your consistent even tone. I agree with everyone who said that we need to get together and work together to strengthen the Party and elect Democrats next year.

However, such that human nature is, it would naive to think we can snap our fingers and make that happen.

I've seen several chairs elected and this was one of the more vicious processess. There must be some reaching out on all three sides. If the victors gloatingly expect the others to fall in line, they will surely learn the meaning of "win the battle, lose the war." If the losers want to be obstructionists (as many of the losers in the previous SCDEC did) then we can expect a moribund performance from the Committee.

I would hope that we can work together over the next two years but it will take honest and frank talk and compromise. Matt seems like he has the temperament for starting the dialogue.

Miss Manners said...

Please people, in the immortal words of Rodney King “Can’t we all just get along.” The campaign for chairman ended Saturday. Remember two general rules, be magnanimous in victory and gracious in defeat. For the Cocke supporters, the hard sell didn’t work before the election and it’s not going to work now. I understand that it is the strategy to split some or all of the coalition from the Chism. That is to be expected and it is a valid plan. I also understand that attacking now seems logical in order to crack the coalition’s base before it solidifies. But rather than throwing sticks and stones, do it through action and stop saying petty mean spirited things. Most of your arguments have already been debated within the coalition during that Monday meeting, all be it in a much less vulgar way. It is just making the coalition circle the wagons. As for the coalition, there are definitely some vendettas over there directed at Cocke and Upton. Paraphrasing Yoda, “anger leads to hate, hate leads to vengeance, and vengeance leads to the darkside.” Don’t be fooled into thinking you can dish out justice for the “wrongs” done by the Cocke people. When you start thinking like that, it does not stop. There simply can never be enough justice because all you perceive are offenses done by the other side. So in summary: Cocke people please stop talking unless it is about something constructive. Coalition folks, don’t get self-righteous because ya’ll did some shady stuff too during this food fight.

Anonymous said...

I did not have a dog in this fight, but I thought if he's now the leader of the Party, I should see what he's all about. So, if "you have to avoid even the appearance of impropriety," then why elect a Chair who worked as the Chief Administrative Officer for Shep Wilburn- during a time that he allegedly committed illegal acts, and publically made excuses for Wilburn's behavior:
"Kuhn called the other allegations basesless and questioned their timing in light of the August 1, election. . . 'It kind of smells funny', Kuhn said, 'I mean that all happened last fall, and for some strange reason now just before an election it comes up.'" However, "Kuhn acknowledged that FBI agenst asked questions about job for cash allegations."
The controversy surrounding Wilburn involved the same actors that are involved in the Waltz, namely, Myers and Willis.

Kudos to the Coalition on your participation and victory. I'm sure many of you acted and will serve honorably and work hard, but please explain to me why this candidate.

I mean, in addition to his association with Wilburn, as treasurer - the party incurred a $1500 fine because he failed to file certain documents timely. And for much of the last ten years he has not even lived in Shelby County.

Couldn't you have found a better choice among you- someone even more removed, perhaps.

LeftWingCracker said...

"And for much of the last ten years he has not even lived in Shelby County."

Please clarify; I know that he traveled a lot a few years ago while doing political consulting work, but was his physical residence outside the County? For how long?

Please provide more information.

PosterChild42 said...

This argument is frustrating and pointless. Despite the sleazy tactics some of his people took, I supported David Cocke because I believed he was the most qualified and best person for the position. But I was not on the EC so I had no vote.

Regardless of what some of you have convinced yourselves, not everyone in the coalition supported Kuhn. Coalition delegates were free to vote their own choice. I personally would NOT have been involved with the coalition at all had it been any other way. The extreme paranoia I see here in the anonymous ones is really sad. This kind of thing is EXACTLY why most people want change. By ranting and accusing others of the most ridiculous conspiracies, you only confirm the view that the party has been a split up mess for a long time and change is needed.

Anonymous said...

Did you ever think for once the reason you are not on the EC is because you were for David Cocke and the Coalition didn't want you on there because you could have voted for David.

Hmmm, imagine for a moment that you did have the ability to strategize, you would know that you were not useful to the "greater good".

PosterChild42 said...

I personally decided not to run for EC. I know it's shocking, but I do have a mind of my own. One major reason I decided not to run was because of this nastiness.

So there you are, at least one Cocke vote that you might have had lost due to the venom. There are at least two others that I know of.

You really should do something about this paranoia. It's not healthy.

So like the last thread, I'm leaving this one alone too. I've got a party to support.

Anonymous said...

Anyone who cares about this Party will work for local Democratic candidates and NOT with the Executive Committee. Don't give your money to a Party that will use it to promote the cronies of a small band of disloyal Democrats. Don't allow your party to support men (or women) who would support a Republican candidate over a Democratic candidate if it promoted their own personal agenda. Please take your energy and your talents and find a candidate you can really believe in - then give it your all. The party is bigger than the EC. If you find all of this distasteful the best message is to turn your back on those 68 people who think they can tell the rest of us what to do. Stand up to them and tell them NO- we don't like the way any of you did things and we won't support you either financially or will sweat equity. We will support the real men and women who toil tirelessly for Democrats everyday - elected officials and Democratic candidates. Maybe then, they will realize that they must conduct themselves better if they want our help. Take this pledge with me fellow Dems. - Say no to the power brokers, self-promoters and back room deal makers. Say no to lies, manipulation and brow beatings. Say thanks, but no thanks to the EC.

Anonymous said...

Left Wing Cracker - you asked for some clarification. After College -which he attended away from Shelby Co.- Matt immediately began working as an aide to Congressman Tanner -in DC then on Spratt's campaign- in S.C.; then Purcell - in Nashville, then to Sacramento. He did live here from mid 2000 to mid 2002. Then back to Nashville and D.C. - until I guess about six months ago. All very important work I'm sure- I just think the coalition maybe could have chosen someone more homegrown.

LeftWingCracker said...

That I didn't know, thank you for the information. Remember, I was a Joe Young supporter and I was surprised when Matt materialized.

However, I have maintained all along if it looks like he is just muscling for Chism, the coalition will fight back.

I don't think they got in this to kiss up to either Chism or Ford; I think they look upon it as Chism joined THEM, not vice versa...

Anonymous said...

Since they were receiving aid from Norma Lester, Calvin Anderson and Gayle Jones Carson early on- I'm not sure you are right, but we can hope.

Anonymous said...

You people are crazy as hell and very mean spirited. I remember last year when Mr. Talut was asking everybody to help develop the website. As of today, nobody came forward. Today you are criticizing his efforts. Many of you are either hypocrites or maybe just racist. I think this man did hell of a job. In some ways, I think because of how southerners think this why the south lost the civil war.

Mr. Talut is a very intelligent man. He stayed above the fray and a very good leader for the party until the end. I thank him and respect him even if he is a black man.

Anonymous said...

Right on ignore the new EC work for TRUE DEMOCRATIC CANDIDATES.
Do not give them money or lend a hand and John Freeman for God's sake don't do as you usually do and use your influence in the community for their sake. You always do that, then they turn around and treat you like shit.


LeftWingCracker said...

WTF? All I mentioned earlier is that the website needed further development and that there were pople who wanted to do that.

"I thank him and respect him even if he is a black man." Geez, how condescending is that? Who the hell suggested ANYTHING about race?

Talut El-Amin is a terrific Democrat who performed a great service for his party at a difficult time, and while a lot of the delegates were impatient with him on Saturday, I have no doubt that he was trying to do the right thing at every opportunity. Matt and the new EC needs to thank him for that.

DynoDonkey said...

You have to admit, the behavior of some delegates at the Convention towards Talut was disgraceful. At one point during the Chair election, he stated that he was still chair and was trying to run the meeting- to which a Coalition member yelled "not for long." Grotesque.

Not to mention that the way that all went down - amature chaos. Of course, Matt had the votes but the proper procedure was not followed, not even close. Mass confusion.

LeftWingCracker said...

I agree; Gale had to go over and calm down Richard Fields and tell him to sit down.

Part of the problem was that District 98 took FOREVER to get done while every other district had finished; maybe someone from that District could post and let us know why it took so long.

In the meantime, Talut did use that opportunity to make a speech to the new ExecCom, who was tired and wanted to vote and get the hell out of there.

That's no excuse, though...

DynoDonkey said...

NO! It really isn't. Maybe he Talut has more patience than some. I really think he ought to apologize to Talut in particular but also to the entire committee. If certain members on the EC committee are treated this way- it will be ugly from start to finish. Isn't District 98 Nancy Kuhn's District- I don't know that had anything to do with the delay, but maybe she could tell you why it took so long. I think she was also the District Chair. As for the other procedure, I really believe there is a legal challenge to the way it all went down- of course, no one would do so- because obviously Matt had the votes, but in the future we ought to make an effort to get it right. People have said they couldn't hear and didn't understand what was going on. People thought that they were going to be called on to verbally state who they were voting on and that the vote would occur in alphabetical order of candidates. Thus, David would be called first- I think a few people even stood up - thinking they were voting on David and then sat down when they realized otherwise. Like I said, for this Convention it does not really matter. But we've got to do better next time - it makes the Party look ridiculous.

LeftWingCracker said...

Mal Hooker was chair of 98, I haven't had to fo find out what the problem is.

I was chair in 93, and I followed the instructions to the letter. We handed out these instructions during registration, so the delegates should have had some idea what was supposed to take place.

How did it go in your district?

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