Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Molly, you will be deeply missed.

THE TEXAS OBSERVER is reporting that Molly Ivins has lost her battle with cancer. Please read the obituary of one of America's finest reporters and columnists.


Yes, well, HARRUMPH.


Ahem. It has been brought to my attention that I did NOT have a link in my blogroll to YOUR NFC CHAMPION CHICAGO BEARS, who will be whipping, er, playing the Indianapolis Colts in this Sunday's Super Bowl XLI.

That has been corrected, as you can see.

For more coverage of the Bears, see the following locations:

ChicagoSports.Com

Chicago Tribune

Chicago Sun-Times

Daily Southtown

Daily Herald

WSCR - 670 THE SCORE

and of course, YOUR HOME OF THE BEARS, Newsradio 780 WBBM.

If you can't find coverage there, well, you're just not looking hard enough.

Also, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra invites you to click HERE and listen to their performace of BEAR DOWN, CHICAGO BEARS, complete with chorus, I believe.

Prepare yourselves now, my pick (which you may have guessed already) will be arrving Friday. So that you may sing along with the CSO and Chorus, here are the words:

Bear down, Chicago Bears,
Make every play clear the way to victory!
Bear down, Chicago Bears,
Put up a fight with a might so fearlessly.

We’ll never forget the way you thrilled the nation
With your “T” formation.
Bear down, Chicago Bears,
And let ’em know why you’re wearing the crown.
You’re the pride and joy of Illinois,
Chicago Bears, bear down!

Monday, January 29, 2007

He could have been the greatest horse ever to have run

Photo Courtesy Deadspin.com

However, we'll never know. After a long battle to survive, Barbaro, the 2006 Kentucky Derby winner, was euthanized this morning at New Bolton Center in Kennett Square, PA, where he had been treated since his right hind leg came up lame shortly after the start of the 2006 Preakness Stakes.

He won EVERY race that he was able to finish, and looked like a good bet to win racing's first Triple Crown since 1978. However, it just was not to be, and we are all poorer for it.

Saturday, January 27, 2007

Even the NATIONAL blogs notice the upgrade!

Jonathan Singer at MyDD has written about our new Congressman and how he is an upgrade from the old one:

Cohen is a great example of how even a Democrat replacing another Democrat in the House can make Congress more progressive. While in this case the change was not accomplished through a primary, Cohen's statement's and pledge to chart a progressive course as Representative for Tennessee's 9th district -- particularly after the district was represented by the unabashedly centrist Harold Ford -- make a fairly strong case for offering primary challenges Democratic members who are out of touch with their strong Democratic majority districts.

Of course, some of the commenters, still deluded that Junior is a Democrat, took umbrage, but who cares?

This comes on the heels of a Kos post, noted by Pesky, that shows that freshman Democratic congresspeople are avoiding Ford's DLC like the Plague:

It's delicious irony watching loser Harold Ford take the helm of the dying DLC, while Democrats who won tough conservative districts (the ones only DLC moderates are supposed to win) gear up for reelection utterly rejecting the DLC accommodationist playbook. Just goes to prove that 1) we're evolving as a party, becoming more effective, and 2) our freshman Democrats are no idiots. Even those elected in solid Republican districts are beginning their two-year re-election drive by -- get this -- establishing clear distinctions between themselves and Bush and his Republican Party.

SWEEEEEET.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Well, the Democratic electorate has spoken.

LOUDLY.

With all 58 precincts reporting and Early Vote and Absentees listed, here are your final, unofficial numbers in the Senate 30 Democratic Primary:

Beverly Marrero 2810 73.4%

Robert Spence, Jr. 925 24.2%

Kevin Gallagher 88 2.3%

Enough said.

You have until 7 PM to VOTE if you live in Senate 30

Either vote, or I'll do a naked hula on your lawn.

If that doesn't turn out the vote, nothing will. One of my friends called to inform me that when she voted at 8:30 AM, 90 MINUTES AFTER THE POLLS HAD OPENED, she was the FIRST person to vote that was not a poll officer or worker.

Maybe we should do the purple finger bit here. As for myself, I voted early (and took a friend to vote as well) and have called every one I know to vote.

So, it's up to you if you live in 30 and you haven't yet voted, do it now.

Before it's too late, and you wake up to see a naked 300-lb man dancing on your lawn.

Think about it.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

TOMORROW is Election Day

IF you live either in Senate District 30, and/or House District 92, and some of you may live in BOTH.

So, if you didn't vote early, GET OFF YOUR ASS AND GO VOTE! Polls are open from 7AM-7PM as always, and early votes should be announced shortly after 7 pm HERE.

If you are supporting Marrero, as I have, and you want to help tomorrow, show up at IBEW at 1870 Madison. If you can't help, but support her and want to attend the party afterwards, go there anyway, after 7 PM.

If the Spence folks have a place that they want people to go, please email me and I'll update this post. It's sjs1959 at gmail dot com.

If you didn't like either of them but are still a liberal and/or a Democrat anyway, go HERE, you might find kindred spirits! Not that you won't find supporters of either candidate there, you will.

Other note: G.A. Hardaway is unopposed in the Democratic Primary for House 92 but will face a Republican opponent in the general election; once we get this Godforsaken primary behind us, we need to get behind him, he will be a terrific legislator.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

THIS is what a REAL Democrat sounds like!




UPDATE: From an MSNBC analyst on Bush: "That wasn't a State of the Union speech, it was a State of Denial speech."

HERE'S the transcript of the Webb speech:

Tuesday, January 23, 2007
Democratic Response of Senator Jim Webb
To the President's State of the Union Address

Good evening.

I'm Senator Jim Webb, from Virginia, where this year we will celebrate the 400th anniversary of the settlement of Jamestown - an event that marked the first step in the long journey that has made us the greatest and most prosperous nation on earth.

It would not be possible in this short amount of time to actually rebut the President's message, nor would it be useful. Let me simply say that we in the Democratic Party hope that this administration is serious about improving education and healthcare for all Americans, and addressing such domestic priorities as restoring the vitality of New Orleans.

Further, this is the seventh time the President has mentioned energy independence in his state of the union message, but for the first time this exchange is taking place in a Congress led by the Democratic Party. We are looking for affirmative solutions that will strengthen our nation by freeing us from our dependence on foreign oil, and spurring a wave of entrepreneurial growth in the form of alternate energy programs. We look forward to working with the President and his party to bring about these changes.

There are two areas where our respective parties have largely stood in contradiction, and I want to take a few minutes to address them tonight. The first relates to how we see the health of our economy - how we measure it, and how we ensure that its benefits are properly shared among all Americans. The second regards our foreign policy - how we might bring the war in Iraq to a proper conclusion that will also allow us to continue to fight the war against international terrorism, and to address other strategic concerns that our country faces around the world.

When one looks at the health of our economy, it's almost as if we are living in two different countries. Some say that things have never been better. The stock market is at an all-time high, and so are corporate profits. But these benefits are not being fairly shared. When I graduated from college, the average corporate CEO made 20 times what the average worker did; today, it's nearly 400 times. In other words, it takes the average worker more than a year to make the money that his or her boss makes in one day.

Wages and salaries for our workers are at all-time lows as a percentage of national wealth, even though the productivity of American workers is the highest in the world. Medical costs have skyrocketed. College tuition rates are off the charts. Our manufacturing base is being dismantled and sent overseas. Good American jobs are being sent along with them.

In short, the middle class of this country, our historic backbone and our best hope for a strong society in the future, is losing its place at the table. Our workers know this, through painful experience. Our white-collar professionals are beginning to understand it, as their jobs start disappearing also. And they expect, rightly, that in this age of globalization, their government has a duty to insist that their concerns be dealt with fairly in the international marketplace.

In the early days of our republic, President Andrew Jackson established an important principle of American-style democracy - that we should measure the health of our society not at its apex, but at its base. Not with the numbers that come out of Wall Street, but with the living conditions that exist on Main Street. We must recapture that spirit today.

And under the leadership of the new Democratic Congress, we are on our way to doing so. The House just passed a minimum wage increase, the first in ten years, and the Senate will soon follow. We've introduced a broad legislative package designed to regain the trust of the American people. We've established a tone of cooperation and consensus that extends beyond party lines. We're working to get the right things done, for the right people and for the right reasons.

With respect to foreign policy, this country has patiently endured a mismanaged war for nearly four years. Many, including myself, warned even before the war began that it was unnecessary, that it would take our energy and attention away from the larger war against terrorism, and that invading and occupying Iraq would leave us strategically vulnerable in the most violent and turbulent corner of the world.

I want to share with all of you a picture that I have carried with me for more than 50 years. This is my father, when he was a young Air Force captain, flying cargo planes during the Berlin Airlift. He sent us the picture from Germany, as we waited for him, back here at home. When I was a small boy, I used to take the picture to bed with me every night, because for more than three years my father was deployed, unable to live with us full-time, serving overseas or in bases where there was no family housing. I still keep it, to remind me of the sacrifices that my mother and others had to make, over and over again, as my father gladly served our country. I was proud to follow in his footsteps, serving as a Marine in Vietnam. My brother did as well, serving as a Marine helicopter pilot. My son has joined the tradition, now serving as an infantry Marine in Iraq.

Like so many other Americans, today and throughout our history, we serve and have served, not for political reasons, but because we love our country. On the political issues - those matters of war and peace, and in some cases of life and death - we trusted the judgment of our national leaders. We hoped that they would be right, that they would measure with accuracy the value of our lives against the enormity of the national interest that might call upon us to go into harm's way.

We owed them our loyalty, as Americans, and we gave it. But they owed us - sound judgment, clear thinking, concern for our welfare, a guarantee that the threat to our country was equal to the price we might be called upon to pay in defending it.

The President took us into this war recklessly. He disregarded warnings from the national security adviser during the first Gulf War, the chief of staff of the army, two former commanding generals of the Central Command, whose jurisdiction includes Iraq, the director of operations on the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and many, many others with great integrity and long experience in national security affairs. We are now, as a nation, held hostage to the predictable - and predicted - disarray that has followed.

The war's costs to our nation have been staggering. Financially. The damage to our reputation around the world. The lost opportunities to defeat the forces of international terrorism. And especially the precious blood of our citizens who have stepped forward to serve.

The majority of the nation no longer supports the way this war is being fought; nor does the majority of our military. We need a new direction. Not one step back from the war against international terrorism. Not a precipitous withdrawal that ignores the possibility of further chaos. But an immediate shift toward strong regionally-based diplomacy, a policy that takes our soldiers off the streets of Iraq's cities, and a formula that will in short order allow our combat forces to leave Iraq.

On both of these vital issues, our economy and our national security, it falls upon those of us in elected office to take action.

Regarding the economic imbalance in our country, I am reminded of the situation President Theodore Roosevelt faced in the early days of the 20th century. America was then, as now, drifting apart along class lines. The so-called robber barons were unapologetically raking in a huge percentage of the national wealth. The dispossessed workers at the bottom were threatening revolt.

Roosevelt spoke strongly against these divisions. He told his fellow Republicans that they must set themselves "as resolutely against improper corporate influence on the one hand as against demagogy and mob rule on the other." And he did something about it.

As I look at Iraq, I recall the words of former general and soon-to-be President Dwight Eisenhower during the dark days of the Korean War, which had fallen into a bloody stalemate. "When comes the end?" asked the General who had commanded our forces in Europe during World War Two. And as soon as he became President, he brought the Korean War to an end.

These Presidents took the right kind of action, for the benefit of the American people and for the health of our relations around the world. Tonight we are calling on this President to take similar action, in both areas. If he does, we will join him. If he does not, we will be showing him the way.

Thank you for listening. And God bless America.

PD goes where angels fear to tread..

Polar Donkey assesses the Democratic landscape in Shelby County over the last 18 months, and comes to the conclusion that white Democrats may be on the endangered species list, thanks to the Mayor of Memphis and the election of Steve Cohen. Here's a sample:

The collapse of the Fords has contributed greatly to the ascendancy of the Herenton faction. That faction no longer is content to just have local elected positions and is moving on to state level offices after doing especially well with County Commission elections. District 30 was just the first spot open and some of the bloggers think 93 is next. But I don’t think the movement against these seats is driven by race or political ideology. The Herenton faction is doing this simply because it can. Why not consolidate power when you have the political forces to do it? I’m sure Herenton will push on the City Council as well. By the end of Herenton’s 16th year, he will be the sole, political weather maker. It’s Herenton’s world and we’re all just squirrels looking for a nut.

Want to boo W with your friends? Look at this!

Bumped as a reminder..

TONIGHT, Drinking Liberally is throwing a State of the Union Watch Party at Sleep Out Louie's downtown from 7 PM until ?

Click on the SOTU Watch Party link for an invite, and more info; click on Sleep Out Louie's for a Yahoo! Map of the place. It will be a blast, so come join the fun!

FEAR OF A WHITE CONGRESSMAN

Or, IT TAKES A CAUCUS OF BLACK CONGRESSMEN TO HOLD US BACK!

The POLITICO, a new political blog created by two former Washington Post reporters, gave an inside story as to why our Congressman, Steve Cohen, was denied entrance to the Congressional Black Caucus. As the 9th District is majority African-American, and that Cohen is a serious liberal, he believed that he shared a great many of their issues. While they agreed about the issues, the Congressman was politely denied entrance.

From the report:

Cohen said he became convinced that joining the caucus would be "a social faux pas" after seeing news reports that former Rep. William Lacy Clay Sr., D-Mo., a co-founder of the caucus, had circulated a memo telling members it was "critical" that the group remain "exclusively African-American."

Other members, including the new chairwoman, Rep. Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatrick, D-Mich., and Clay's son, Rep. William Lacy Clay, D-Mo., agreed.

"Mr. Cohen asked for admission, and he got his answer. ... It's time to move on," the younger Clay said. "It's an unwritten rule. It's understood. It's clear."

While our Congressman is content to move on and not worry about it, there's an irony here that you can figure out on your own....

Other comments:

Kleinheider here and here
Bob Krumm

Thank heaven for Sharon Cobb, otherwise I would never have known about this...


For the Marrero supporters, there is an event Wednesday night, the eve of the election. Click on the image to see it on a larger scale.

Thanks to Sharon for the tip...

Monday, January 22, 2007

Uh. isn't it Brady who's supposed to come from behind and win?

Photo courtesy NY Times

Yes, Virginia, there must be a Santa Claus because Peyton Manning won the BIG ONE.

COMING FROM BEHIND.

AGAINST THE PATRIOTS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

After Manning had been picked late in the second quarter by Asante Samuel, who ran it back for a TD to give the Patriots a 21-3 lead, I'll guarantee you that NO ONE outside the state of Indiana though the Colts were anything but toast-on-a-stick.

However, they worked and got a field goal just before the half to cut it to 21-6. Bear Bryant often said that the first drive of the second-half was the most important, because it set the tone for that half. Manning proved him right, as he drove the Colts down the field, scoring the TD himself to cut it to 21-13, and from that point the Patriots simply couldn't stop them.

The winning drive went 80 yards in 77 seconds, with Joseph Addai finishing it with a 3-yard TD with one minute left. After Tom Brady briefly scared the crowd by taking the Pats to midfield, Marlin Jackson picked him off at the 35, and that, my friends, was that.

I can hardly wait for Bill Simmons' next column.

Sunday, January 21, 2007

BEAR DOWN!!!!!!

Photo Courtesy Chicago Tribune

It wasn't the weather, it was the turnovers that the best defense in the NFL forced on the United States Saints, leading to the first Bears' Super Bowl berth in 21 years, 39-14.

Rex Grossman came up big when he had to, going 4 for 4 for 78 yards to give the Bears a 25-14 lead, and the Bears never looked back.

They await the winner of the AFC title game, either the Cols or the Patriots.

Time, time, time for another peaceful war

For some reason, Steve Gilliard, one of my favorite national bloggers, put this up at the NEWS BLOG. Warren Zevon has been a favorite of mine since the 70s, having written brilliant songs like The Envoy, Excitable Boy, Desperados Under The Eaves, and the top-4o smash, Werewolves of London.

I first heard him perform Roland The Headless Thompson Gunner live in 1979 at the Orpheum, and it was a stunner. Then, in 1994, some crazy guy running for Governor invited him to Memphis to perform for his party at 616, and the candidate invited the state YDs, who were convening here, to come hear Warren. It was a magical night, and the candidate and the performer became friends.

This performance was on the David Letterman Show shortly before Zevon passed away from mesothelioma; Letterman devoted the show to him.


Friday, January 19, 2007

Rick, you tried to warn me....

The first time I met the Freedonian, we got into an argument over Rosalind Kurita, who I insisted would have been elected to the United States Senate over Bob Corker if only Chuck Schumer and the DSCC had not gotten in her way. It was a lengthy but fun argument, with each agreeing to disagree.

Once Rick is your friend, he has your back. Despite his concerns, he agreed with us that Ford was not a good candidate, and fought the good fight on Daily Kos, warring with those who had drunk the Kool-Aid for Ford right alongside us crazy bloggers.

He was also there for us when Rosalind Kurita stunned us all by casting the vote that elected Ron Ramsey as Lieutenant Governor and Speaker of the Senate, not once wagging an "I told you so" finger when clearly, it was his right to do so.

Today, however, angered at how Kurita's move A) gave the Goopers the majority and the Senate chairmanships that will injure all Tennesseans making less than six figures a year, and B) angered at how her Memphis supporters (his friends) had been hurt by this, our Freedonian went medieval on Kurita. Here's a taste:

First, her "reasoning" is ludicrous. More from her email: "The most basic tenet of democracy is that the majority rules. In the Tennessee state Senate, Republicans have held the numerical majority for three years. Yet, we were in a "peculiar" situation where the minority continued to keep the majority in the form of the Lt. Governor. That is not our democracy."

As AC Kleinheider pointed out, if that was the case... Then wouldn't she be helping the Republican majority out on every vote? And since when is it incumbent upon a state senator elected as a Democrat to help level the playing field for Republicans? Does Alex Rodriguez feel the need to help out the other team because the Yankees' enormous payroll puts them at an unfair advantage (Okay, given A-Rod's record last year, that could be a bad example)?

If Wilder was so incompetent/corrupt/whatever negative description you want to apply to him, wouldn't the proper time to have voted against him be the caucus? She couldn't be bothered to do that--- In caucus, she voted for Wilder. Earlier in the day, she voted again for the Democratic senators to stand as one behind Wilder--- And then cast the crucial vote for Ron Ramsey. And what of Ramsey?

What about the man calling the dances on this legislative landscape that Kurita and her conscience helped to create? "We'll have a little more of a pro-business agenda. I'll make sure the Commerce Committee leans toward the business side. Things like tort reform that we've sought will be brought to the floor. "

First, it would be difficult for the law in Tennessee to carry "a little more of a pro-business agenda". We are already a state where just cause for termination sounds like some crazy liberal ideal. There's not much to Tennesee Employment Law, and what little there is can be subverted by the current system of "at will" employment. "No, I didn't fire him because he's black/Hispanic/gay--- But I don't have to list an official reason".

(snip)

And what happens to someone that IS terminated unjustly? Well, that's where the second part of his statement comes into play: "Things like tort reform that we've sought will be brought to the floor". Tort reform--- The Republican stealth campaign to destroy the rights of the working class. Wrongfully terminated? Too bad--- Tort reform will restrict your rights to legal recourse. Hurt in the workplace? Welcome to the wonderful world of Republican-imposed damage caps. And no one is isolated from having to pay the high cost of tort reform--- Even if your job is "safe", you will, through your taxes, absorb the cost. After all, what happens to the employee who's injured too badly to work again? Rather than his medical costs being absorbed by the employer that provided the unsafe working environment, the tab will be picked up by you and me.

Sexually harrassed in the workplace? Too bad. Tort reform. Women's groups would do well to remember this the next time Kurita comes around begging for money.

These are the priorities of the man that Kurita handed the Senate over to. Well, that and maintaining a Tom DeLay-style money laundering operation. This is the product of Rosalind Kurita's "conscience".

How bad is it? The new chair of the Judiciary Committee, where "tort reform" will be hashed out, is Mae Beavers, who doesn't even have a freaking law license!!!

Oh, we got chairmanships, Thelma Harper is at Government Ops, Tommy Kilby, who is not running for re-election in 2008, will chair Conservation, and Joe Haynes will chair Ethics. Did I mention that, for her thirty pieces of silver, Kurita was named Speaker Pro Tem? How delightful.

Rick, thanks for having our back and not going medieval on those of us who believed in Kurita when you had every right to do so. We had to learn the hard way, I guess.

What a fun two years we will have!

7-1 and rolling!

Yes, I'm tired of dealing with this damned Senate 30 race, and I'm ready to make my predictions, which have been close to perfect, except for the Colts suddenly having a defense not seen since the late '60s, and not ever in Indy. Here we go....

NFC Championship Game, New Orleans at Chicago, Sunday, 2 PM, FOX (WHBQ - 13)
On a neutral field or in New Orleans, given how strong the United States Saints (per TMQ) have played all year, this probably wouldn't be close. The Bears defense has not been the same since losing Tommie Harris off the line and Mike Brown, the best safety in the NFL when he's healthy (which is to say, RARELY). Of course, you're well acquainted with Rex Grossman, the NFL version of Sybil, who defines erratic on the field.

Not to mention, that, except for a few diehards and Chicagoland transplants around the country, NOBODY outside Chicagoland is going to root for the Bears, for obvious reasons. I just hope the Saints' players don't look at each Bears and see George Bush; we're doomed in that case.

However, the Bears have done the only thing they could do in such a situation, they have gone to their last hope: Tom Skilling. It is he who brings news of BEAR WEATHER! The legendary WGN-TV weatherman has forecast THIS for Sunday:

Sunday
snow
32
25
Overcast lowers/thickens. Blustery SSE winds gust to 20-25 m.p.h. at times. Snow develops mid/late a.m.; Accumulation possible. Bears/Saints game wind chills: 10s.

Alrighty then! Ever played in a blizzard, Deuce? Ever seen snow at all, Reggie? Don't answer that, Drew, we KNOW you went to Purdue. Your brethren, however, used to warm and dry in the Superdome, will have problems executing ANYTHING in the blowing and drifting snow, and your marvelous and uplifting run comes to a slushy stop at the Spaceship on the Lake.

PICK: Bears 17, Saints 13

AFC Championship Game, New England at Indianapolis, Sunday, 5:30 PM, CBS (WREG - 3)

You know, this third playoff meeting between the Pats and the Colts has a different feel about it. Things have changed, what with this game being in Indy rather than Foxboro, indoors instead of out, the Colts RUNNING the ball consistently and throwing to tight end Dallas Clark down the middle instead of going deep to Harrison and Wayne. For heaven's sakes, they're even STOPPING the run.

Oh, and they have Adam Vinatieri, too.

The Patriots are not the Patriots of old, I keep telling myself, even though 81-year-old Rodney Harrison has gotten out of his walker to practice these last two days. I suspect that's more to get in to Peyton Manning's head than anything else. They still have a great DL with Richard Seymour, but Vrabel and Bruschi are slowing down, and Asante Samuel is the only reliable DB.

The Patriots often fire themselves up by claiming no one respects them and they have to stand up for themselves. Right, guys, what kind of respect do you expect? THIS?

Well, I am torn. Yes, I remember that BELICHICK AND BRADY HAVE NEVER LOST A PLAYOFF GAME IN FOXBORO, AND HAVE ONLY LOST ONE PLAYOFF GAME OUTSIDE FOXBORO, AND ARE 12-1 TOGETHER, 2-0 AGAINST INDY.

You know what, I could be Charlie Brown thinking Lucy will actually hold the ball so I can kick it, I could be a sap, but I believe the only Peyton Manning face we'll see this weekend is one of joy and relief. It's upset time at the RCA Dome.

PICK: Colts 28, Patriots 17

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

What's that about Ethics in the Senate?

Well, well, well. It seems that in the last two election cycles, new Lt. Governor Ron Ramsey and his RAAMPAC may have used another PAC to launder campaign contributions, according to this AP story at WMC-TV. Timeline is HERE, more details at the TENNESSEAN.

According to the story, his PAC maxed out contributions to three Gooper Senate candidates, then gave money to another Pac known as SALT PAC, who then took the amount given and distributed to the same three candidates, Bill Ketron, Mae Beavers and Don McLeary.

Per the story and timeline, this was also done in 2004 with the same two PACs for Senate candidates Diane Black, Jim Tracy, and Jerry Sharp.

Gee, who's going to handle the investigation on this?

Lt. Governor Ramsey, let me put it to you this way:

DON'T START NONE, WON'T BE NONE.

MemphisBlue reports on the Debate

Jon over at MemphisBlue observed tonight's Senate 30 debate involving Democratic candidates Rep. Beverly Marrero (D-89) and Robert Spence, along with Gooper nominee Larry Parrish.

Go read it!

Freedonian scoops us all!

Rick has a copy of the Richard Fields letter that is going to be an ad in this week's Flyer, and it is NOT complimentary of Robert Spence.

Great work, Rick!

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Madeleine Cooper Taylor replaces Stout-Mitchell on City Council

Well, apparently one of the qualifications for the District 3 position is that you have to have three names to serve.

Thanks, I'll be here all week, tip your servers and try the veal, it's the best in the city!

In all seriousness, I have no idea who this person is, I don't remember meeting her. The CA article says she is the program coordinator for the Memphis Branch of the NAACP, but that's all I know about her.

She will serve until December 31; the new Council elected later this year will take office on January 1, 2008.

Senator Kurita explains...

I received this in my email box this morning, I offer for your perusal and comment:




State Senate
State of Tennessee
Opinion Column

(Nashville, TN) - This past week I have been asked many times why I voted for a new Lt. Governor.
How could I vote for someone who is not a member of my own political party?
The answer is very straightforward: I voted my conscience.
The most basic tenet of democracy is that the majority rules. In the Tennessee state Senate, Republicans have held the numerical majority for three years. Yet, we were in a "peculiar" situation where the minority continued to keep the majority in the form of the Lt. Governor. That is not our democracy.
It was time for a change in the structure. The dedication to keeping a status quo was preventing our state from putting real energy and bi-partisan effort into solving problems and moving Tennessee forward.
I chose to break the logjam so there can be a vigorous, but civil, policy discussion over the current and future direction of our state.

We face a host of issues -- from improving education, healthcare, and jobcreation to new alternative energy proposals and a more open government. We cannot afford gridlock or stagnation if we are to help solve these problems.
It may seem ironic to some, but only now are Democrats and Republicans free to work together on real issues. I voted my conscience.
Now we can work on improving our state's education system - an issue important to every Tennessean. The future of the children of our state depends upon our ability to inspire high school students to graduate and continue their education. We are currently 48th in high school graduation rates. That must change.
When it comes to higher education, less than one in five Tennesseans has a college degree, several points below the national average. We must provide the hope and the tools to help first-generation college students realize their dreams for a better future.
Our health care system must shift focus to encourage disease prevention and promote individual responsibility so we solve problems before they start. This includes anti-smoking programs and, yes, raising the tax on cigarettes. It is the 4th lowest in the nation.
Open government should also be a part of the legislative agenda. One way to accomplish this would be to allow every voter an equal opportunity to vote for our state's constitutional officers: Secretary of State, State Treasurer and Comptroller. They are currently elected by the members of the General Assembly.
Tennessee is one of very few states where voters are not empowered to make such important decisions on high-ranking government officials. Letting our citizens vote increases accountability and makes sure government is held accountable.
Nationally, Democrats benefited from being in the minority because it forced our party to hone a message that resulted in the tremendous gains of 2006. I believe we can now use this time to communicate a new message to Tennesseans that will emphasize people over party and benefit our state as a whole.
Every member of the Senate is tired of being 49th in so many areas. I intend to work with my fellow Democrats and Republicans as well as the new Lt. Governor to create legislation that moves our state forward.
The era of the smoke-filled back room is over and we are now free to have a healthy public policy debate that can only benefit the citizens of this great state.

Sen. Rosalind Kurita represents District 22 in the Tennessee state Senate.
Pamela George
Executive Secretary
State Senator Rosalind Kurita
6 Legislative Plaza Nashville, Tennessee 37243
(615) 741-1100
EXT. 44392

Kleinheider offers HIS theory here.

Word.



Hat tip to AMERICABlog, who has some of their other work linked.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Whew! The Bears SURVIVE..

Photo courtesy Reuters

Wow. After playing a great first half, the Bears eke out an overtime win over the Seahawks in OT, 27-24. Their reward? Hosting America's Team, the New Orleans Saints, next Sunday at 2 PM on Fox13.

As for the other game, only Tom F. Brady could win a playoff game by throwing an interception. Patriots-Colts. AGAIN.

Will this insanity never end?

Friday, January 12, 2007

It's Friday and I promised you some picks, didn't I?

Well, let's get to it, then. Your humble Cracker went 4-0, thanks to Tony Romo.

AFC Divisional Playoff Game 1, Indianapolis at Baltimore, Saturday, 3:30 PM, CBS (WREG -3)
Well, the Ravens have long been known for the killer defense, and, well, the Colts HAVEN'T. Their win against KC was more the result of Herm Edwards playing into the Colts' hands with their offense, or lack thereof. Expect to see what Bill Simmons calls "The Peyton Manning Face" by the 4th Quarter, as Indy goes home before the Super Bowl yet again.

Ray Lewis may personally kill and eat Manning, if he's not careful.

PICK: Ravens 28, Colts 13

NFC Divisional Playoff Game 1, Philadelphia at New Orleans, Saturday, 7 PM, FOX (WHBQ - 13)

Jeff Garcia has had a remarkable run subbing for Donovan McNabb after the All-Pro veteran went down for the year after game 11, when the Iggles were a lowly 5-6 and looking like they would out on the golf course in January. Garcia came out and reminded everyone not of his last couple of years, but the Garcia of his youth with the 49ers. Sparking Ewing Theory thoughts, the Iggles have won seven games in a row to capture the NFC East and knock off the Giants last week at home at the Linc.

They WON'T be at the Linc Saturday night. They will be at the Superdome, home of America's NEW Team, your New Orleans Saints. Sean Payton has revitalized the franchise that everyone thought was San Antonio-bound, with the help of the Dolphins (for passing on Drew Brees for Daunte Culpepper), the Houston Texans (for passing on Reggie Bush in favor of Mario Williams), Deuce McAllister in a personal renaissance, and the fans of New Orleans, in and out of The Big Easy.

There will be high emotion, high drama, but I believe Jeff Garcia's fantasy run ends here, as the Saints will be focused and the Eagles will be stopped.

PICK: Saints 24, Eagles 10

NFC Divisional Playoff Game 2, Seahawks at Bears, Sunday, Noon, FOX (WHBQ - 13)

OK, which Rex Grossman will show up? That's really the definitive question for this game, as he will either win the game for the Bears with TD passes or for the Seahawks with interceptions. As long as Rex has a decent game, not a bad one, the Bears' defense, as usual, will be good enough to eke out a win at home in an ice storm at the Spaceship on The Lake.

PICK: Bears 13, Seahawks 3

AFC Divisional Playoff Game 2, Patriots at Chargers, Sunday, 3:30 PM, CBS (WREG - 3)

The Chargers have the MVP, LaDanian Tomlinson, the FORMERLY roided-up All-Pro Defensive End, Shawne Merriman, they have home field at the Murph (it ain't Qualcomm to me) and a young but decent QB, Philip Rivers, who is improving each game, except that this will be his FIRST playoff game as a starter.

Unfortunately, they also have Marty Schottenheimer as a head coach. Mr. I-Can-Find-More-Ways-To-Lose-In-January-Than-Any-Coach-EVER!

And, well, they're facing.......The New England Patriots.

BELICHICK. BRADY. 11-1 in the Playoffs together, NEVER lost a playoff at home and only ONE on the road, last year at Denver.

Sorry, LDT, your season ends here, especially with Marty on your sidelines.

PICK: Patriots 27, Chargers 17




Thursday, January 11, 2007

Thanks, BCR!

A spirited defense of our friend, Beverly Marrero has come from...


wait for it....


BLUE COLLAR REPUBLICAN!

As it was Thaddeus who first raised the issue of Marrero's education, BCR answers, better than I did below:

But I’ve heard about all I can take of Thaddeus Matthews race baiting and insulting Marrero’s education. I have a lot of respect for Thaddeus, but he has got to get off this GED kick. For your information Thad, I have a GED. Like Marrero, I left High School prematurely (like many in our age group did). Yet I returned to college in the 1990’s a little better prepared than most and did quite well (because I took it seriously). Marrero also went back to college as a working mother. Since then, she has gone on to public service and from what I understand has done very well promoting the liberal agenda of her constituency.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

You're On Notice!


Nuff said.

Now that the bleeding has stopped

And I've had a night's sleep, I am coming to the sad conclusion that the Freedonian was right after all, and I didn't meant to take shots at him or Desi with the prior post, i was just attempting to inject a little humor at the end of a long, trying, day.

Go read Sharon Cobb. She has two posts up about the Kurita situation, which seems to indicate that she knew early yesterday morning that she would vote for Ramsey.

Here are my thoughts: Yes, Andy Axel, there was a shiv in her back, but it didn't say TNDP on it, it said DSCC. She was betrayed by DC, not John Wilder or Bob Tuke or anyone here; hell, most of us loved her because she was the Anti-Ford.

Yes, Wilder needed to go, but not at the expense that it cost. There's simply going to have to be a better explanation for all who supported her than "I voted my conscience". Every one of us who are active in Democratic politics in this state who supported her deserves that.

UPDATE: Sean Braisted has a good take on this as well.

Chapter Two: I Am Nailed To The Hull


Yes, Miles, I'm beginning to know how you felt.

What great and good friends I have in the blogging community, as one implies that I have been played like a Stradivarius by someone now perceived to be Benedict Arnold:

This wasn't payback--- Unless payback is preemptive. The fundamental difference between her and Harold is that she believes in giving handjobs to the activist wing of the party. She pretends to give a damn what we care about. He doesn't.

And my other co-conspirator, who believes I have inadvertently given off the impression to the African-American community that I have become the bastard grandchild of Lester Maddox:

Sorry to bitch slap you, LWC. Of course, I am not suggesting and don't mean you are "reflexively against African-Americans in [your] district." Or, certainly, purposefully against them either.

But mindful of the resentments and attitudes expressed by many local African-American Democrats that whites don't support black Democratic candidates (see August elections), I am simply pointing out that perception can matter more than reality sometimes - as I well know from the reaction to my support of certain judges over others last July. I have good reasons - I'm sure you do too, but things such as this keep rifts open and/or widen them.

Well, OK then. I trust them to point things out to me when I may not clearly see them.

I'm still taking in all of what happened on Tuesday, and welcome your thoughts as well.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

I had to steal this, AC..

Kleinheider linked to a Newscoma post suggesting that Kurita will not be injured by her vote, and there was this killer comment from KnoxViews' Andy Axel, simulating what Rosalind SHOULD have said to Wilder:


"Sen. Wilder?

You might notice something -- that knife that I just plunged in your back bears the initials 'TNDP.'

It's the same one I pulled from my own back late last spring.

Have a nice day."

Amen, Andy.

Making sense of today.

Rosalind Kurita has always had guts, but nobody knew she had a pair like that.

Yes, as I was reminded a while ago, it was her vote that ended John Wilder's 35-year reign as Lt. Governor and Senate Speaker of Tennessee. Chris Jackson has already attacked her at Volunteer Voters, and some of us returned fire.

It's tough for Tennessee Democrats right now to imagine the Goopers in control of the Senate for the first time in 140 years. However, as I noted at Rick's site earlier today, we haven't been in REAL control of the Senate since 1987 and the failed Democratic coup against Wilder. WILDER has controlled the Senate to his liking, whether it was to the liking of the activists of either party or not. He gave committee chairs to Goopers as well as Democrats, thwarting any real progressive agenda.

One of my best friends says that Democratic activists around the state need to TRIPLE their contributions just to make up what the lobbyists are going to throw at Gooper Senators instead of Democratic Senators. OK, fair enough; but maybe we also need to start pushing for public financing of elections.

Hell no, I know the Goopers won't go for that, but after they have whored themselves out enough, the public will realize the truth of elections; either we pay less now with public funding, or we pay MORE later for goodies given to corporations by lobbyists and Gooper legislators.

We also have to be prepared to win at least TWO more Senate seats in order to regain full control of the Senate, and we need to do this by the end of the 2010 elections, so that we can have control over redistricting. NEWS FLASH: We needed to do that ANYWAY. Then, we would be in position to elect a full-blown Democrat and not just someone holding power for power's sake.

Yes, it's going to hurt in the short-term, and it means that the Senate Democratic Caucus is going to have to raise money beyond lobbyists and turn to smaller donors, which means we are going to have to step it up to help them as well.

We start by keeping District 30 Democratic, and you know who I believe gives us the best chance to do that. Then, we have to fight like rabid badgers to win back some Senate seats around the state.

But first, we have to ACCEPT today's results, quit bitching and move forward.

We really don't have any choice in the matter.

An era comes to a stunning end.

John Shelton Wilder has been defeated for re-election as Lieutenant Governor. He lost 18-15 to Gooper Ron Ramsey of Blountville. The end came when Democrat Rosalind Kurita, a friend of this blogger, and then Mike Williams of Maynardville, a Republican who had voted for Wilder in the past, voted for Ramsey and ended Wilder's 36 year reign in the state's Number 2 position.

I never thought it would happen, but it has. More later while I get my wits together.

More reaction:

Memphis Blue
Volunteer Voters (several posts)
Freedonian

UPDATED.

Monday, January 08, 2007

So the SEC gets lucky and salvages one...

courtesy AP

It was a country butt-whoopin', Florida 41, Ohio State 14.

Congrats to the Gator fans out there.

Obviously the Big Ten can't end their season before Thanksgiving ever again, 50 days off is TOO LONG. Take nothing away from UF, though, they out played and out COACHED Mr. Sweatervest.

I just hate hearing the SEC people brag, though, they never play anyone outside the conference except at gunpoint. I'll just have to settle for 2-1 in the Bowls.

Friday, January 05, 2007

No wagering, please

As always, these predictions ARE FOR ENTERTAINMENT PURPOSES ONLY. CAPICHE???

Ahem. The Wild Card round of the National Football League playoffs begin this weekend, and I have my opinions about them as well. Here we go:

AFC Wild Card Game 1 - Kansas City at Indianapolis, 3:30 PM, NBC (WMC 5)

We will know after the first drive by Herman Edwards' Chiefs how this game will go. If the Chiefs fail to score a touchdown on their opening drive, the Colts will win and advance to the Divisional Round next weekend. In fact, if the Chiefs fail to score a touchdown on ANY possession Saturday, they are toast-on-a-stick.

Their only hope is to keep their offense on the field for LOOOONNNGGG, grinding drives that end with Larry Johnson touchdowns, keeping Peyton Manning off the field as much as possible. If Larry Johnson doesn't get 35 carries for 225 yards and 4-5 TDs, it's over for KC, as they are no more able to stop Manning, Marvin Harrison and Reggie Wayne than I am able to guard Pau Gasol.

PICK: Colts 42, Chiefs 24

NFC Wild Card Game 1, Dallas at Seattle, 7 PM, NBC (WMC - 5)

For all their injuries this year, let's not forget that the Seahawks are A) the defending NFC Champions, B) healthier than they have been all year and C) at HOME. The Cowboys are none of those, with receivers who are dropping balls at critical moments (Hi, T.O.!), they have a journeyman QB who had 5 great games until the League's defenses adjusted to him, but they have a creditable defense.

Unfortunately, that defense will probably be gasping by the 4th Quarter, as they will have been out there too long. Hasselbeck and Shawn (Remember me, I was LDT LAST YEAR!) Alexander will be too much for the Boys in what will turn out to be Bill Parcells' swan song by the middle of next week.

PICK: Seahawks 28, Cowboys 17

AFC Wild Card Game 2 - NY Jets at New England, Noon, CBS (WREG - 3)

Master Vs. Pupil, Part III. I know, Eric Mangini is a terrific coach, having learned at the feet of the Master during his days in Foxboro. The J-E-T-S are a gritty band of overachievers who will follow their leader anywhere. They are primed and ready for this mission against the Patriots, who will be lack their leading headhunter, er, tackler in Rodney Harrison.

OK, cut the crap. Belichick and Brady HAVE NEVER LOST A PLAYOFF GAME IN FOXBORO. THEY HAVE ONLY LOST ONE PLAYOFF GAME OUTSIDE FOXBORO. They aren't going to lose this one, either. The Master gives yet another painful lesson to his pupil, sending Mangini and his disciples home weeping copiously.

PICK: Patriots 31, Jets 13

NFC Wild Card Game 2, NY Giants at Philadelphia, 3:30 PM, FOX (WHBQ - 13)

Look, the Giants, with the possible exception of Tiki Barber and Michael Strahan, would just as soon be on vacation in Bermuda or Aruba right now. They are already wondering who will replace Ernie Accorsi as GM (he is retiring at the end of the playoffs) and who the new GM will bring in to replace Tom Coughlin as Head Coach (he will be INVOLUNTARILY retired at the end of the playoffs).

And, they will be at the Linc, where Jeff Garcia has renewed his and his team's vigor and showed Andy Reid that good things can happen when you equalize the running and passing game. Besides, the Eagles WANT to be here, and beyond.

We'll miss you, Tiki. We WON'T miss you, Tom; go back to college ball where you belong. Someone else will have to get that deer-in-the-headlights look off Eli Manning's face.

PICK: Eagles 28, Giants 10

More picks next Friday; just remember, no wagering, please!!

THIS explains a lot...

Now we have some insight on why Brian Davis and Blue Devil Ventures didn't have the cash to buy the Grizzlies.

According to this Washington Post article, Davis is part of a group that has purchased Washington's Major League Soccer franchise, DC United. (HT to Brad in LR). From the WaPo report:

Davis, a District native who runs a real estate development firm in Durham, N.C., said a few months ago that the group was close to finalizing a $33 million deal.

Why has NOTHING been said about this at ESPN, the CA or any other large media outlet prior to today, considering Davis and his friend Christian Laettner have humiliated themselves with their inability to raise the capital to buy the Grizz from Michael Heisley.

Did Mike Heisley know about this? Inquiring minds want to know.

Memphis Blue says we NEED a Stadium..

And he has an interesting plan to fund it:

The city is going to have to spend 50 million to upgrade the Stadium and Coliseum. Take that 50, and say to UofM, I'm sorry University of Memphis, I don't want to piss of any fans of Michigan or Montana, Ole Miss can go to hell, oh wait, you already have, here is half the cost that we were going to have to spend anyway, you raise the rest, you go over that in your fund drive, we donate the money to the University's general scholarship fund, and not to this construction.

Read the rest here.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Our Lady's Institution Weeps......

Courtesy ESPN.com

While I myself am a Buddhist of longstanding, since A) I was born and lived my first 8 years in the Midwest and B) I am descended from Polish Catholics on my father's side of the family, I have loved Notre Dame since they fought Michigan State to a 10-10 tie in 1966, clinching the mythical National Championship. (Sorry, Bama fans, ND played a tougher schedule and this is yet another NC that you claim but you don't deserve, just like 1973 and 1978).

With that having been said, someone needs to do an intervention with ND, its fans and the BCS, because Our Lady 's Institution needs to quit getting BCS bids it clearly does not deserve.

The picture above says it all, as Jamarcus Russell and LSU flat-out ABUSED the Fighting Irish tonight in the Sugar Bowl, 41-14. While the Irish stayed close for almost a half, the Bayou Bengals blew them out in the second half in front of a majority Purple and Gold-clad crowd just 70 miles from campus.

Look, I know the Irish have a devoted national following, most like me, who never attended Notre Dame; this is why they have their own TV contract with NBC. However, even though Charlie Weis has done a decent job in South Bend, the Irish have not won a bowl game since the 1994 Cotton Bowl.

Yes, you read that correctly; tonight they set a record with their NINTH consecutive bowl game loss.

Let me make it even scarier for you: since Notre Dame knocked off Texas A&M in the 1994 Cotton Bowl, your University of Memphis Tigers have appeared in THREE bowls and won TWO of them. Yes, the UM Tigers have two MORE bowl wins than Notre Dame since 1994.

Let that sink in for a moment.

The BCS rules that requires Notre Dame to get a BCS bid if they finish in the top eight in the BCS rankings is not fair to them, or non-BCS schools. It overrates the Irish, as painful as it is to say that, and leads to massacres like tonight.

As the good fathers who run Notre Dame ensure that Fighting Irish recruits meet the same academic standards as every other student, it puts them at a disadvantage against other schools from conferences who are, shall we say, less discriminating about academics. That's part of the charm of ND anyway, but with the increasingly growing professionalism of college athletics, something has to give.

Change the rules so we can have more Boise States, who are more deserving than the Irish. At the rate they're going, in another 10 years they may have to either drop the standards or drop football.

Neither of which is a good sign for intercollegiate athletics.

I meant to bring this up earlier, but..

David Holt is blogging again at WTL, and he has a great post about the Mayor's idiotic suggestion that we build a new stadium to replace the Liberty Bowl. Here's a taste:

Would 100 million dollars (I'm making that number up, but he didn't give a number) be better spent on building a football stadium for a college team (a pro-football team WILL NOT be coming to Memphis. The Titans are too close and we can barely support a pro basketball team in a basketball-crazy city) in a weak conference that has had a grand total of 3 winning seasons in my lifetime or would it be better spent improving our schools, providing prenatal care to poor mothers, job training, or attracting good jobs? Memphis has Autozone Park, the Liberty Bowl, the Coliseum, the Cannon Center, the Pyramid, and the Fed-Ex Forum. I'm sure I'm missing some. Did those cure the city's ails? It hardly looks like they did. Mr. Mayor, I've never been you're biggest fan, but lately I haven't had anything to be angry with you over. That just changed. Where the hell are real leaders in this city?

On top of this, Harold Byrd, who is a MAJOR supporter of the University of Memphis (and I mean academic, not just athletic) took the time to send a letter to U of M President Dr. Shirley Raines regarding the idea of a new Fairgrounds stadium, and he was NOT pleased. Part of his remarks here:

If the proposed new football stadium facility is being built for the University of Memphis Tiger football team, it should be built "on campus". Almost all major Universities including UT, Ole Miss, and Arkansas have on campus football and basketball arenas.

Its time for the University to stand up and be counted and look out for its own best interests....which by the way is also in the entire community's best interests as well, including the Liberty Bowl and the Southern Heritage Classic.

Had the correct decisions been made over the years, the University would have 1st class football and basketball facilities on campus. Instead, the University and unfortunately disgruntled taxpayers drive by a deteriorating Liberty Bowl Stadium and mothballed Pyramid.

News flash: if Harold Byrd, who was out of town at the time, took the time to write a letter to Shirley Raines to say what a bad idea this is, this stadium project is dead.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

You mean Early Voting is about to start already??

From your friendly neighborhood Election Commission about the Senate 30 and House 92 Special Elections:

NOTICE OF EARLY VOTING
JANUARY 25, 2007
SPECIAL DEMOCRATIC AND REPUBLICAN PRIMARY ELECTION


Pursuant to Sec. 2-6-103, Tennessee Code Annotated, notice is hereby given by the Shelby County Election Commission of unrestricted early voting for the January 25, 2007, Special Democratic and Republican Primary Election as follows:

Site Locations, Dates and Times
SHELBY COUNTY ELECTION COMMISSION
157 POPLAR AVE., SUITE 121

BEGINNING on
Friday, January 5, 2007: 8:00 AM to 4:30 PM
Saturday, January 6, 2007: 8:00 AM to 4:00 PM
Monday, January 8 thru Wednesday, January 10, 2007: 10:00 AM to 8:00 PM
Thursday, January 11 thru Friday, January 12, 2007: 10:00 AM to 7:00 PM
Saturday, January 13, 2007: 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM
Closed on Monday, January 15, 2007 in observance
of DR. MARTIN LUTHER KING'S HOLIDAY
Tuesday, January 16 thru Friday, January 19, 2007: 10:00 AM to 7:00 PM
Last day on Saturday, January 20, 2007: 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM

Satellite Sites
Beginning on Saturday, January 13, 2007: 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM
Closed on Monday, January 15, 2007 in observance
of DR. MARTIN LUTHER KING'S HOLIDAY
Tuesday, January 16 thru Friday, January 19, 2007: 10:00 AM to 7:00 PM
Last day on Saturday, January 20, 2007: 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM
LOCATION NAME, LOCATION ADDRESS
Berclair Church of Christ, 4536 Summer Ave., 38122
Greater Middle Baptist Church, 4982 Knight Arnold Rd., 38114
Mississippi Blvd. Christian Church, 70 N. Bellevue Blvd., 38104
New Salem M.B. Church, 2231 S. Parkway E., 38114
White Station Church of Christ, 1106 Colonial Rd., 38117
Click to display map of the EV Sites

Pursuant to Sec. 2-6-102, TCA, a voter who desires to vote early shall go to the County Election Commission office or to any of the satellite locations listed above within the hours set out for the early voting period, sign an application for ballot and vote. Pursuant to Sec. 2-7-140 (c) (1) voters who are already registered can make address changes at an early voting site. For further information, call 545-4132.

SHELBY COUNTY ELECTION COMMISSION
Gregory M. Duckett, Chairman
Richard L. Holden, Secretary
Nancye E. Hines
O. C. Pleasant, Jr.
Maura Black Sullivan

Monday, January 01, 2007

If this is how 2007 starts, I wonder how it will end!

Look, I didn't get home until 4 this morning, didn't get up until 11 and other than watching the Hogs lose, Tennessee get beat (Heh!) and Michigan go belly up YET AGAIN in the Rose Bowl, I have been out of it.

OK, so I learn that, at Councilor Myron Lowery's new year's Prayer Breakfast, my Congressman is endorsing his friend of over 30 years for his old Senate seat. No shit, really??? The only surprise would have been if he HADN'T endorsed Beverly Marrero after Kevin Gallagher withdrew in her favor.

You want to talk batshit crazy, though, the Mayor topped everyone this morning at his OWN Prayer Breakfast when he announced that the Liberty Bowl needed to be replaced with a brand-new 50,000 seat football stadium. WTF???????????

OK, yes, the Liberty Bowl is 43 years old and over-sized for the U of M Tigers, the AutoZone Liberty Bowl and the Southern Heritage Classic at 65,000 seats. Ask anyone who goes there on a regular basis, though, and they will tell you that the problem isn't due to age, it's due to mismanagement by the Memphis Park Commission (not enough gates open, understaffing, etc.).

Not only that, the time to have built a new stadium was 15 years ago when we were trying to get an NFL team here. That ship has sailed forever, however, and we really don't need a new stadium, just better operators for a building that has events what, 12-15 times a year?

Next, given that we are lacking in cops on the street, code enforcement and whatever else you can think of, how are we going to pay for this stadium? I'm a Tiger fan, but let RC Johnson, Fred Jones and Steve Ehrhart raise the money on their own for a new field, we can't afford it now. PERIOD.

The Mayor, ever his own worst enemy, now apparently seems bound and determined to blow the political capital he earned last year with the implosion of the Fords and his endorsement of Steve Cohen. This idea is lovely if we were flush with cash, but we're nowhere NEAR that right now.

As always, Polar Donkey kicks it up a notch, just go read it here.