Archive for May 30th, 2006

Clemens to the Astros? Say it ain’t so, Rocket!

I’ll believe it when it hits the wires. Why would he do such a thing? Seriously? Who cares if the ‘Stros play in his home state. Houston sucks! It’s polluted. It’s dull. There are way too many conventions. The Bushes consider Houston their political capitol. The Texans. Ugh.

But Boston! La la! Now there’s a city and team to join! If I were Clemens, I’d pick the Sox in a heartbeat. In fact, I predicted it. So it’s got to happen! And why not? There’s the tradition. There’s the career full circle thing. Plus, with Clemens, the Sox would be the instant faves for the whole shebang! (Not so in Houston, dear readers.)

But…would I trade the Rocket for a US Senator from Big Sandy?

*gulp*

*gulp*

Let me get this straight. Would I deny the Boston Red Sox Roger Clemens and a clear shot at the title in exchange for a Jon Tester victory in the primary and general elections?

Is that the deal?

*gulp*

Um, okay. I guess that’s a fair trade. I mean the Sox just won in 2004, so it’s not like we really need to win it all this year. So. Okay. Sure.

Deal.

(*sigh*)

Update: Argh! It's hitting the wires! But only as a rumor…

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Interesting article in today’s Gazette: “Montanans like state’s direction, not country’s.” It’s an analysis of the recent poll that shows Sen. Burns’ approval numbers are plummeting while Gov. Schweitzer’s numbers are rising. (Funny how some of these newspaper articles are like blog posts, aren’t they?)

When it comes to judging the direction of our nation, a majority of Montanans think we're on the "wrong track," according to a Gazette State Poll.

But when the same question is asked about the direction of the state, the answer is quite the opposite: 72 percent of those surveyed said Montana is on the "right track."

Governor Schweitzer’s approval ratings are nearly at 70% — while Conrad Burns’ sinks to below 40%.

There’s been a lot of controversy lately about how the Democratic national party has been funding grassroots organizations across the States. (Democratic strategist, Wayne Begala, said of Howard Dean’s spending on grassroots organization, “What he has spent it on, apparently, is just hiring a bunch of staff people to wander around Utah and Mississippi and pick their nose.”)

But it seems to be paying off, as evidenced by this Gazette report, and a report from Colorado over its 6th Congressional District – paleo-conservative Tom Tancredo’s seat – which cites similar poll numbers as those in Montana.

When asked the "do you think we are moving in the right direction" question, only 50% thought Colorado was and that number dropped to 29% when talking about the US generally. The rest were divided between 'wrong direction', 'mixed', and 'don't know', with 55% opting for saying the US is moving in the wrong direction. 

If anything, Coloradans think the country is worse off than Montanans. Only 29% of Coloradans thought the country is in the right track as compared to 34% of Montanans. While 50% of Coloradans thought the state was moving in the right direction, 72% of Montanans said the same thing. Seventy-two percent!

What’s the difference between the two states? Montana has a Democratic Governor and a Democratic-majority in the legislature. Colorado has a Republican Governor and a Republican-majority in the legislature.

It seems that Dean's strategy is beginning to affect the political climate at the state level. Democrats are fielding superior candidates, and enough money is floating around to make viable challenges against vulnerable seats. Even seats that are "traditionally" Republican.

There are other things, too, of course. Colorado’s TABOR – the spending-cap bill – is generally seen as a disaster for the state, so much so that Colorado citizens passed Referendum C last year, allowing some easing of the spending cap. Maybe there’s still resentment against conservative fiscal groups for TABOR. Maybe people tend to get weary of the majority party.

Or maybe it’s just that Democrats govern better. That sounds like a radical and partisan statement – maybe it is. On the other hand, who here believes that the Bush administration has handled its responsibilities better than Clinton’s? No hands?

And after all, many conservative fiscal extremists – like Grover Norquist and his ilk – want to destroy government, or at the very least its role in providing services for the people. And many conservative social extremists – like Bill Napoli and his ilk – want to limit civil liberties in favor of nebulous moral experiments.

Maybe six years of majority rule has weakened the Republican Party. Maybe somewhere along the line the extremists hijacked the conservative movement. Whatever happened, it seems like plenty of voters are growing increasingly turned off by their incompetent and nut-job representatives…

Update: Oops! I was wrong about Colorado's legislature. Apparently it is already controlled by Democrats and has been since 2004. (Hat tip to commentor, Matthew Rasenick.) Still the Governor is a Republican, and the legislature has polled well with state residents…

Links…

Matt Singer makes a plea for Tester on the Daily Kos, urging us to donate to his campaign. Good advice, Matt. If you want to see an honest, competent politician win an election for a change, drop a sawbuck into Tester's hat.

Joshua Micah Marshall weighs in on the Iranian Badge story and Amir Taheri: “As we gear up for the mix of agitprop and disinformation aimed to lay the groundwork for war with Iran, few claims could be more incendiary than alleging that Iran was recapitulating one of Nazi Germany’s steps as it built toward the Final Solution. For the war party, such a development would be so good that, as the phrase goes, if it hadn’t existed it would have to have been invented.”

Red State Rebels has a post up about a Congressional race that bears watching. It pits a moronic, rude, and utterly incompetent Republican (and that’s the criticism from his own party), Bill Sali, against a moderate, competent Democrat, Larry Grant. Grant, too, needs your help.

The SCOTUS limit protection for government whistleblowers (reg req’d). Alito cast the deciding vote. Way to go, Congressional Democrats.

Orcinus analyzes Lou Dobbs’ as an example of how the immigration debate has opened the floodgates for racism in traditional media.

The Great Society’s Matt presents the 2006 mid-term rallying cry: “Gay agenda means less freedom for all.” I just don’t understand how granting more people access to cultural institutions means less freedom.

Be afraid of the Bush dynasty. Be very afraid.

TPMMuckraker analyzes a recent AP attack on Harry Reid. Guess what – Reid didn’t do anything wrong, even according to the report. Not like, say, Conrad Burns.

Great article on the responsibility of the press: “Stop whining and do your job.”

Firedoglake’s Pachacutec’s Memorial Day post: “There is No “War on Terror.”

Livingston, I Presume thinks pregnancy-as-punishment is cruel. I can only agree.

Intelligent Discontent’s thoughts on the administration’s phony news broadcasts. No, he doesn’t mean Fox News.

Blogenlust notes that the administration wants to launch submarine missiles loaded with conventional warheads at terrorist camps. You know, whatever, probably just a way to justify the outrageous expenditure for Cold-War-era toys, but only thing is that other countries can’t discern a conventional-weapons missile from a nuclear warhead when it’s launched. Um…? Isn’t that a problem?

Pat Robertson is “pressing on” with his heroic weight-lifting claim.




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