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Saturday, May 31, 2008

BREAKING News: Barack Obama QUITS Controversial Church. Amen To That!

Read about it here, and watch the video announcement below:

I only say amen because I believe the church has caused more distraction in this presidential election than religion should be allowed to cause, and it seems like every preacher who wants to get his name in the news feels COMPELLED to try and outdo Reverend Jeremiah Wright.

With Barak Obama's departure from the church, we can prayerfully say: ENOUGH ALREADY, and get back to a discussion of, and finding solutions for, REAL issues that concern and affect REAL people.

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Florida And Michigan Will Sit Their Delegates -- But ONLY Half. Hillary BILLARY Clinton Vows To Fight On!

The Democratic dog and pony show ended today in Florida with the rules committee ruling that Michigan and Florida Delegates will be seated -- but ONLY at HALF their strength. Read more here.

Seems to me to be a REASONABLE compromise considering the circumstances and what the rules MANDATE.

The resolution increased the number of delegates needed to clinch the nomination to 2,118, leaving Obama 66 delegates short but still within striking distance after the three final primaries are held in the next three days.

As a result, Obama picked up a total of 32 delegates in Michigan, including Super Delegates who have already committed, and 36 in Florida. Clinton picked up 38 in Michigan, including Super Delegates, and 56.5 in Florida.

The deal passed 19-8. Thirteen members of the committee supported Clinton, so she wasn't even able to keep her supporters together. (As a result, Obama's total increased to 2,052, and Clinton had 1,877.5).

Obama now needs 64 Delegates to win, and BILLARY Clinton needs 240.5!

Being true to form, however, and being DEVOID of ANY SHAME, BILLARY Clinton, through her BLAH BLAH BLAH talking head Lawyer and HACK of the HIGHEST degree, Harold Ickes vowed to take the "case" to the "appellate" credentials committee.

WASTE of time and MONEY, if you ask me. (And whatever respect I had for Harold Ickes is now G-O-N-E).

But then again, the time and money are NOT mine to worry about WASTING.


Either way, though, Obama is the party's presumptive nominee, not witstanding some of the antics of some of BILLARY Clinton's supporters:

BILLARY Clinton spins the decision.


Update: Here are the "undecided Super Delegates:

Bud Cramer (AL)
Gabrielle Giffords (AZ)
Nancy Pelosi (CA)
Jerry McNerney (CA)
Mike Honda (CA)
Sam Farr (CA)
Bob Filner (CA)
Susan Davis (CA)
Mark Udall (CO)
John Salazar (CO)
Jim Marshall (GA)
Rahm Emanuel (IL)
Nancy Boyda (KS)
Dennis Moore (KS)
William Jefferson (LA)
Charlie Melancon (LA)
Don Cazayoux (LA)
Rep. Michael Michaud (ME)
John Sarbanes (MD)
Steny Hoyer (MD)
Chris Van Hollen (MD)
John Olver (MA)
Niki Tsongas (MA)
John Tierney (MA)
Edward Markey (MA)
Collin Peterson (MN)
Gene Taylor (MS)
Rep. Travis Childers (MS)
Rep. Rush Holt (NJ)
Rep. Bob Etheridge (NC)
Rep. Mike McIntyre (NC)
Rep. Tom Udall (NM)
Charlie Wilson (OH)
Marcia Kaptur (OH)
Rep. Zack Space (OH)
Rep. Dennis Kucinich (OH)
Rep. Dan Boren (OK)
Bob Brady (PA)
Jason Altmire (PA)
Tim Holden (PA)
Rep. Mike Doyle (PA)
John Spratt (SC)
Rep. Jim Clyburn (SC)
Lincoln Davis (TN)
Bart Gordon (TN)
Nick Lampson (TX)
Jim Matheson (UT)
Alan Mollohan (WV)
Distinguished Party
Jimmy Carter (GA)
Al Gore (TN)
Fmr. Senator and Majority Leader
George Mitchell (NY)
Fmr. DNC Chair Bob Strauss (TX)
Ken Salazar (CO)
Joe Biden (DE)
Tom Carper (DE)
Tom Harkin (IA)
Mary Landrieu (LA)
Ben Cardin (MD)
Carl Levin (MI)
Max Baucus (MT)
Jon Tester (MT)
Harry Reid (NV)
Frank Lautenberg (NJ)
Sherrod Brown (OH)
Ron Wyden (OR)
Jack Reed (RI)
Jim Webb (VA)
Herb Kohl (WI)

Bill Ritter (CO)
Steve Beshear (KY)
Brian Schweitzer (MT)
John Lynch (NH)
Phil Bredeson (TN)
Joe Manchin (WV)
Terry Goddard (AZ)
Jay Nixon (MO)
Rusty McAllister (NV)
Jerry Lee (TN)

DNC Members
Joe Turnham (AL)
Nancy Worley (AL)
Don Bivens (AZ)
Lottie Shackleford (AR)
Art Torres (CA)
Hon. Carole Migden (CA)
Bob Mulholland (CA)
Christine Pelosi (CA)
Robert Rankin (CA)
Steve Ybarra (CA)
John Perez (CA)
Nancy DiNardo (CT)
Donna Brazile (DC)
Christine Warnke (DC)
John Daniello (DE)
Harriet Smith-Windsor (DE)
Richard Ray (GA)
Edward Smith (IL)
Helen Knetzer (KS)
Jennifer Moore (KY)
Nathan Smith (KY)
Chris Whittington (LA)
Claude "Buddy" Leach (LA)
Elsie Burkhalter (LA)
Sam Spencer (ME)
Jennifer DeChant (ME)
Hon. Heather Mizeur (MD)
Susan Turnbull (MD)
John Sweeney (MD)
Belkis Leong-Hong (MD)
Debra Kozikowski (MA)
James Roosevelt Jr (MA)
Carnelia Pettis Fondren (MS)
John Temporiti (MO)
Yolanda Wheat (MO)
Leila Medley (MO)
Hon. Robin Carnahan (MO)
Hon. Maria Chappelle-Nadal (MO)
Dennis McDonald (MT)
Margarett Campbell (MT)
Sam Lieberman (NV)
Hon. Yvonne Gates (NV)
Hon. Catherine Cortez Masto (NV)
Philip D. Murphy (NJ)
Raymond Buckley (NH)
Irene Stein (NY)
Ralph Dawson (NY)
David Parker (NC)
Muriel Offerman (NC)
Carol Peterson (NC)
David Strauss (ND)
Hon. Chris Redfern (OH)
Ronald Malone (OH)
Patricia Moss (OH)
Hon. Joyce Beatty (OH)
Ivan Holmes (OK)
Jim Frasier (OK)
Jay Parmley (OK)
Frank Dixon (OR)
Wayne Kinney (OR)
Gail Rasmussen (OR)
Hon. Bill Bradbury (OR)
Eliseo Roques-Arroyo (PR)
Hon. Gilda Cobb-Hunter (SC)
Cheryl Chapman (SD)
Gray Sasser (TN)
Dr. Inez Crutchfield (TN)
Boyd Richie (TX)
David Hardt (TX
Denise Johnson (TX)
Betty Richie (TX)
Linda Chavez -Thompson (TX)
Helen Langan (UT)
Jim Leaman (VA)
C Richard Cranwell (VA)
Hon. Alexis Herman (VA)
Jerome Wiley Segovia (VA)
Howard Dean (VT)
Eileen Macoll (WA)
Ed Cote (WA)
Sharon Mast (WA)
David McDonald (WA)
Nick Casey Jr. (WV)
Alice Germond (WV)
Paula Zellner (WI)
Cynthia Nunley (WY)
Marylyn Stapleton (VI)

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Feds Investigate Oil Speculators, Gas Prices DROP. Mere Coincidence? Yea. Wink.

As soon as the Feds announced they have been investigating oil speculators, and as soon as I announced that prices in Bowling Green had gone up to $4.00 a gallon for regular unleaded gasoline, today those prices DROPPED to $3.87 per gallon.


I'm sure the oil companies and the oil speculators will tell us its all a coincidence, right?



All I can say is that I extend much KUDOS to the Feds.


Fen-Phen Diet Drug "Crooked" Lawyers Need To Have Their Assets Put On A Strict Diet By The Courts -- And More.

Read more here.

No need to have to re-hash the SORDID affair; it all "stinks to the high heavens."

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Democratic Rules Committee's "Dog And Pony" Show.

I am sitting here watching the Democratic rules committee's "dog and pony" show and I must say that I am watching a Democratic event that shows the Florida Democrats (and BILLARY Clinton and her supporters) demonstrating an incapacity to NOT abide by the rules they all agreed to set for themselves.

EVERYONE, the Clinton camp included, AGREED that the votes cast in Florida and Michigan would NOT count. As a result, MANY voters stayed home expecting that their votes would NOT count as the rules committee decreed; Obama did not campaign in Florida and also took his name off the Michigan ballot in respect of the decree.

Now the Clinton camp is arguing, because BILLARY Clinton is DESPERATE -- she needs those Delegates in her attempts to catch up with Obama, who leads her OVERWHELMING in Delegate count, needing only 40 Delegates to attain status as the Democratic Party's presumptive nominee, -- and she has NO respect for RULES (UNLESS those rules benefit her), that it would be undemocratic not to field those Florida and Michigan Delegates.

The Democratic Party rules call for no more than half the Delegates be seated under these circumstances, but BILLARY wants ALL Delegates seated -- and with a VAST majority of them going to her.

Of course we expect this COMPLETE lack of ETHICS and FAIR PLAY from BILLARY Clinton camp.

Why would the Democratic Party even go along with this nonsense?

Are they truly AFRAID of the Clinton's or the perceived threat of party disunity that they will ignore even the pretensions of what they claim their party stands for -- Fairness?

Truly PATHETIC, if you ask me.

I have had enough of this SORRY charade and I am going to go now and watch my banana plants grow (thanks Norm for my plants), because that promises to be BETTER entertainment and informative.

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Friday, May 30, 2008

Contributors To President Bush's 2000 And 2004 Campaigns Are NOW Giving To Barack Obama's Campaign.

Read the story here and find out why.

And these mentioned folks are NOT alone!

You can bet on it!!

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SurveyUSA Poll Comes Bearing GOOD News For Senator Mitch McConnell, Senator Jim Bunning -- And Governor Steve Beshear.

Here's the report from Mark Hebert:

A new Survey USA/WHAS 11 News poll shows Sen. Mitch McConnell's job approval rating jumped a whopping 11 points this month. Fifty seven percent (57%) of the Kentuckians who were surveyed approve of the job McConnell is doing while 37% disapprove.

The same poll found a 10% jump in Sen. Jim Bunning's job approval rating. Bunning is now at 49% approval, 40% disapproval. That's Bunning highest job approval rating since October 2005.

But back on McConnell. These numbers have to be extremely good news for the Senate Minority Leader, who saw one pollster (Rasmussen) release numbers earlier this week showing McConnell trailing Bruce Lunsford in this year's senate race. Survey USA has not done any polling yet on the McConnell-Lunsford race but a Lexington Herald-Leader poll showed McConnell with a 12 point lead over Lunsford.

The breakdown on McConnell's Survey USA job approval numbers shows his biggest support coming from eastern Kentucky (62%-32%) and among men (65%-33%). McConnell is even polling fairly well among democrats (45%-50%) and African-Americans (57%-40%).

For Governor Steve Beshear, Mark Hebert files this report:

Governor Steve Beshear's job approval rating improved 6 points this month, according to a new Survey USA/WHAS 11 News poll. According to the poll, 44% of Kentuckians approve of the job Beshear is doing while 50% disapprove. Beshear's numbers in April were dismal (38%-54%).

The survey shows a majority of men approve of Beshear's work (50%-46%) while a majority of women do not (39%-53%). And Beshear is still suffering the pain of that state senate seat campaign and loss in eastern Kentucky. Only 32% of eastern Kentuckians approve of the job Beshear is doing, dragging down his overall number. The Louisville area (50%-45%) and western Kentucky (49%-44%) provided the bump in Beshear's numbers. In a bit of surprise to me, African American voters don't like the job Beshear is doing by a 14 point margin (40%-54%).

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Person For The Week: Scott McClallen.

Feel FREE to call our Person for the week what you will, traitor, back stabber, turncoat, patriot extra-ordinaire, truth teller, liar, or what you may, he is STILL our UNDISPUTED Person for the week.


Does Hillary BILLARY Clinton Have A Drinking Problem?

Inquiring minds want to know.

Bye, bye BILLARY.

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A Reader Was OUTRAGED About These Photos That He Wanted Me To Post Them Here. So Here Goes.

Here's the email content:

I guess they already finished their English homework!!! Montebello High School in California

You will not see this heart-stopping photo on the front page of the NY Times, nor on the lead story of the major news networks.
The protestors at Montebello High School took the American flag off the school's flag pole and hung it upside down while putting up the Mexican flag over it. (*See pictures below*)

I predict this stunt will be the nail in the coffin of any guest-worker/amnesty plan on the table in Washington . The image of the American flag subsumed to another and turned upside down on American soil is already spreading on Internet forums and via e-mail.

Pass this along to every American citizen in your address books and to every representative in the state and federal government.. If you choose to remain uninvolved, do not be amazed when you no longer have a nation to call your own nor anything you have worked for left since it will be 'redistributed' to the activists while you are so peacefully staying out of the 'fray'. Check history, it is full of nations/empires that disappeared when its citizens no longer held their core beliefs and values. One person CAN make a difference.

One plus one plus one plus one plus one plus one........ .

The battle for our secure borders and immigration laws that actually mean something, however, hasn't even begun.

If this ticks YOU off...PASS IT ON! IF IT DOESN'T IT SHOULD!

Editor's note: I CANNOT vouch for the AUTHENTICITY of the photographs, particularly the one about the upside down American flag -- it appears to have been pasted on. It reminds me of the DOCTORED picture of Obama standing without his hand over his heart at a singing of the National anthem. So please, if anyone out there can vouch for the pictures' authenticity -- or lack thereof -- please let me know.



More Scott McClellan, This Time Counting Down "What Happened" With Keith Olberman.





Dick Morris: The Clinton's Just Have To Win.

Here's Dick Morris' Latest piece, which appeared in the Hill:

In January 1998, right after The Washington Post revealed President Bill Clinton’s relationship with Monica, I spoke with him about his predicament. Shell-shocked and stunned at the calls for his impeachment, he knew he was facing the fight of his life. At first, he was vintage Bill Clinton: maudlin, sad and full of self-pity. But as we talked, he gradually changed his tone. Admitting that he was not innocent, but recognizing his diminishing support, he then told me defiantly: “Well, we’ll just have to win.”

Several years later, I was surprised to read in Sidney Blumenthal’s memoirs that then-first lady Hillary Clinton had used the exact same words on the exact same day in a conversation with the White House aide. “We’ll just have to win.”

That’s how the Clintons think — no matter what, they have to win. Winning is everything, and how you do it is not determined by any inner sense of values or ethics, but by a resolve to do whatever needs to be done, no more and certainly no less. So, on that day in January 1998 — because they had to win — their campaign to discredit a 23-year-old intern began in the White House. Private investigators dug up her old boyfriends. White House operatives spread the word that it was the president who was the victim. The young woman was an unbalanced stalker.

As impeachment unfolded, the extramarital affairs of key members of the Republican leadership in the House were suddenly outed.

Hillary Clinton began the disinformation campaign. Appearing on “The Today Show,” she righteously claimed that there was nothing to support Lewinsky’s claims and insisted that Bill was just “ministering” to a “troubled young woman.” Then came the blue dress and the Clintons finally — and reluctantly — changed gears.

But they never changed philosophies. Winning is still everything. No matter who gets destroyed, offended or hurt in the process.

We’ve seen it throughout Hillary’s campaign: the race-baiting by Bill Clinton in South Carolina and by Hillary in Kentucky. His comparison of Obama to Jesse Jackson and her talk about “hard-working whites” was not accidental. The Clintons don’t make verbal mistakes.

Everything they say is deliberate. And then Bill Clinton actually had the nerve to say that it was the Obama campaign and not him — that they had played the race card. Once again, he’s the victim.

Now Bill and Hillary are desperate to keep Hillary in the race. Despite mathematical impossibility, the Clintons are biding their time. Out of money and out of delegates, they are waiting for some unknown force to suddenly emerge and change the race. That’s why Hillary made the reference to Bobby Kennedy.

Because the Clintons know, better than most people, that time has often been a friend.

Anything can happen. Remember how, in 2001, they left the White House as pariahs amid the uproar about the last-minute pardons involving brothers of both of them, the hundreds of thousands of dollars in gifts of china, silver and furniture that they arranged to get from donors, and the theft of White House furniture. They were in disgrace. Hillary’s first press conference was a defense of her brothers’ payments for pardons. Both Clintons were lambasted by The New York Times, The Washington Post and every other media outlet. And, in Bill’s last hours in office, he pleaded guilty to crime and was disbarred.

But seven years later, Hillary has come amazingly close to becoming the Democratic Party nominee. And until he destroyed his reputation by his bizarre and belligerent behavior in Hillary’s campaign, Bill Clinton was the most popular guy in the world.

Time allowed Bill and Hillary to remake themselves — he as a save-the-world philanthropist and she as a hard-working senator who got along with everyone.

Just like time had turned the special counsel’s draft indictment of Hillary into scrap paper, particularly after Jim McDougal, the chief witness, died in prison.

And time erased the memory of the Clintons’ pardon of the FALN terrorist group to help Hillary with the Puerto Rican community.

But now time is finally running out for the Clintons. They’'ve stayed at the party too long, and it isn’'t a pretty sight. But they won’t leave gracefully. No way. They still believe that there’s a chance to win. And they’ll do anything to make that happen.

Because they just have to win.

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Memorial Day Message From A Soldier Serving Our Country In The Middle East.

I received this email today from one of our soldiers in the Middle East and I thought I post it -- WARNING: the email is rather long, but bear with me):



First, a few statistics to ponder. There are twenty-five million living American veterans. Since General George Washington commanded the Continental Army forty-two million Americans have served the colors. A million have been killed in its defense. Another million and a half wounded. When most of us think about military cemeteries the first thought that comes to mind is Arlington National in Washington, but there are many, many more in the U.S. Most Americans also don’t know there are 24 American cemeteries maintained overseas with 125,000 graves of our fallen—61,000 in France alone—the result of two wars that saved Europe and the world from horrors unimaginable to Americans today; unimaginable, that is, unless you are a veteran who have seen the terrible face of war so those who remained safe in America, and those yet unborn, would never have to. There are also memorials overseas to an additional 94,000 Americans who were lost at sea, or their remains never recovered from battlefields around the globe. With all this service and loss, we as Americans can be proud of the kind of people we are as we have never retained a square foot of any country we have defeated, we possess no empire, nor have we enslaved a single human being. On the contrary, billions across the planet are today—and billions yet unborn—live free because our veterans have fought and died, and, once peace achieved, we’ve rebuilt destroyed cities, economies, and societies.

Memorial Day was established three years after our terrible Civil War that finally established what kind of nation we would be. A war in which 600,000 young Americans—North and South—perished. For a century the day continued to mean visiting and decorating graves or town-square memorials to those who died serving our great nation, and celebrating with parades and civic events. Americans kept the day quiet pausing to remember, at least for a little while, the kind of men and women they were who gave the last full measure, and the immensity of the sacrifice they made for those who remained protected at home.

Americans should not forget this weekend or any weekend as they relax with a few days off that the country is at war, and a new Greatest Generation is fighting a merciless enemy on their behalf in the terrible heat of Iraq, and in the mountains of Afghanistan. Like it or not America is engaged in a war today against an enemy that is savage, offers no quarter, whose only objectives are to either kill every one of our families in our homeland, or enslave us with a sick form of extremism that serves no God or purpose that rational men and women can understand. Given the opportunity to do another 9/11, our vicious enemy would do it today, tomorrow and everyday thereafter. I don’t know why they hate us, and I frankly don’t care and they can all go to hell, but they do hate us and are driven irrationally to our destruction. The best way to fight them is somewhere else and that is why we are here. For whatever reason they want to destroy our way of life our countrymen at home should be on their knees everyday thanking God we still have enough young people in America today willing to take up the fight as our Veterans did from the earliest days of our nation.

They should know that they are protected today by men and women as good as have ever served; as good today as their fathers were in Vietnam, and their grandfathers were in Korea and World War II. In this my third tour in Iraq I have never seen an American hesitate, or do anything other than lean into the danger and, with no apparent fear of death or injury, take the fight to the enemies of our way of life. As anyone who has ever experienced combat knows, and many of you do, when it starts, when the explosions and tracers are everywhere and the calls for the Corpsman or medic are screamed from the throats of men who know they are dying—when seconds seem like hours and it all becomes slow motion and fast forward at the same time—everything in one’s survival instinct says stop, get down, save yourself —yet you don’t. When no one would call you coward for cowering behind a wall or in a hole looking to your own self preservation, none of you do. It doesn’t matter if it’s an IED, a suicide bomber, mortar attack, fighting in the upstairs room of a house, or all of it at once—America should know you fight today in the same way our warriors have since the Revolution.

The wonderful thing about America’s Armed Forces is that none of us are born killers. On the contrary we are good and decent Americans mostly from the neighborhoods of America’s cities, and small towns. Almost all come from “salt of the earth” working class homes, and more often than not are the sons and daughters of cops and firemen, factory and service workers, and farmers. Most of us delivered papers, stocked shelves in the grocery store, played Little League baseball and pickup hockey in the local rink, and served Mass on Sunday morning. Some are former athletes, and many “couch potatoes” who drove our cars and motorcycles too fast, and blasted our music louder than perhaps we should have. We are all ordinary people performing remarkable acts of bravery and selfless acts of devotion to a cause bigger than ourselves—and for millions who will never know our names. Any one of us could have all stayed in school or gone another way, but yet we chose to serve knowing full well Iraq and Afghanistan was in our future. You did not avoid the most basic and cherished responsibility of a citizen—to defend the nation and its people—on the contrary, you went after it. You did not fail in life which the chattering class back home likes to believe is why you chose to serve and risk dying for the nation, but, rather, are the best our nation produces and have consciously put every American at home above your own self interest. You are all heroes and like many Veterans throughout our history many of us have endured things—sights, sounds and horrors—that will haunt us for the rest of our lives. I know I find comfort that because I am here those I love and have sworn to protect will never have to deal with memories so terrible. I hope you who have seen these things have the same sense of purpose and balance when you relive the scenes of violence, and of decisions made.

America’s Armed Forces today know the price of being the finest men and women this nation has to offer, and pay it we do everyday in Iraq and Afghanistan. More than four thousand of us have died in this war, and ten-times this number have been wounded. And the sacrifice continues as three Americans have gone to God since we all went to bed last night and slept free and protected. Their mothers and fathers, brothers and sisters, wives, husbands, and fiancés are sitting in their living rooms right now with casualty officers learning the true price of freedom, and are only just beginning a lifelong struggle of dealing with the pain and loss of someone so dear, but they are not victims as they knew what they were about and were doing what they wanted to do. Many of today’s self-proclaimed experts and media commentators endeavor to make them out to be victims but they are wrong, and this only detracts from the decision these patriots made to step forward and protect the country that has given so much to all of us. We who are serving, and have served, demand not to be categorized as victims—we are not. Those with less of a sense of service to the nation never understand it when strong and committed men and women stand tall and firm against our enemies, just as they can’t begin to understand the price paid so they and their families can sleep safe and free at night—the protected never do. What the experts, commentators, and elites are missing, what they will also never understand, is the sense of commitment, joy, and honor, of serving the nation in its uniform, but every American Veteran, and their loved ones who support them and fear for them everyday, do understand.

We should all be confident that this experiment in democracy we call America will forever remain the “land of the free and home of the brave” so long as we never run out of tough young Americans willing to look beyond their own self interest and comfortable lives, and go into the darkest and most dangerous places on earth to hunt down, and kill, those who would do us harm.
In closing I wanted to share a story that you may not be aware of that took place only a few miles from here in Ramadi. On 22 April 2nd Battalion 8th Marines and 1st Battalion, 9th Marines were in the process of turning over a Joint Security Station Nasser. It’s in the Sophia district of Ramadi, and was once the center of the insurgency in that city. Two Marines who barely knew each other as one was coming and the other going were standing guard at the Entry Control Point (ECP): their names were Jonathan Yale and Jordan Haerter. At 0745, and without warning, a large truck accelerated towards the ECP careening off the protective serpentine. Both must have understood on instinct what was happening as in less then a second they went to the guns and opened fire until the massive 2,000lb blast took their lives—but the suicide bomber never passed the post they protected, and 50 other Marines and perhaps as many police didn’t die that day inside the JSS. I spoke to several Iraqi police eyewitness and they all told the same story, but one more emotionally than the others. He said no sane man would have stood there directly in the path of a speeding truck firing their weapons—yet two did. His officers, some as close as ten feet initially from the Marines, fired and ran when it was obvious the truck could not be stopped—and they survived. The Marines stood their ground and stopped the truck before it detonated, and saved the lives of their buddies.

A sacred duty of every commander in combat, yet the one we dread the most, is writing letters home to families who have lost a son or a daughter. I wanted to close by reading you a letter I wrote that night to the mother of one of those two heroes that for me sums up who and what we are as warriors and veterans, why we serve, and how we will remember each other.

22 April 2008

I know there is nothing I can write tonight that will help you deal with the loss of your son Jonathan. I do hope you can find some comfort as I try to help you understand what he was doing for every American when he was taken from us all. He was standing watch on a nameless side street in Ramadi at the entrance of a compound that housed a large number of Marines, Iraqi Police, and civilians. In the early morning a truck turned down towards the entrance and ignored the visual warnings he gave to stop. Jonathan and the Marine he was with must have sensed immediately what was taking place as they went to the guns quickly and fired a very high volume of automatic weapons fire undoubtedly killing the suicide driver, but not before he detonated the massive blast that took their lives. His fellow Marines did what Marines have done from the beginning of our history, something they do almost without thinking and always without hesitation—they risked their own lives to save his, but he was already gone to God. Mrs. Pride because of your son and that other Marine nearly fifty other American families are not mourning tonight; their son’s lives were saved by two Marines who would not abandon their post even to the point of death.

I did not know your son Mrs. Pride, but I am sure he was just like every Marine I have known in the three decades and more that I have served. Like my own two sons who are Marines and have served here in this war, I bet he was a good looking young man, fun loving, into sports and a good son—but not perfect—boys never are. He was also different Mrs. Pride, because he chose to leave the comfortable and safe confines of his home and walk a different path than all the rest. The path he chose led him to be one of the nations finest, to be a Marine. When he did not have to raise his right hand and swear before his God to serve and protect this nation and its people, he did just that. We all owe him an eternal debt of gratitude that can never be repaid. We also owe you, Tammy, and all who loved him a debt—one that can never be settled.

I have 25,000 Marines under my care here in Iraq, and I fear for their lives every minute of every day as if they were my own. They are out there everyday and every night patrolling the most dangerous places on earth for millions of people at home they do not even know. In times of weakness I wonder why they come, young men like Jonathan, why they come when no one makes them. When everything in our society seems to say “what’s in it for me,” those like your son think of others—not themselves. I did not know your son Mrs. Pride, but I will never forget him. I will keep him in my thoughts and prayers for the rest of my life.

With deepest sympathy,

Major General, U.S. Marine Corps
Commanding General
I Marine Expeditionary Force (Forward)

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Still In Kentucky, Battle For House Leadership Begins.

The battle for Kentucky House Leadership has begun in earnest with Louisville Representative, Joni Jenkins, drawing the surprised support of Speaker Jody Richards, in her bid to oust Speaker Pro Tem Representative Larry Clark of Louisville.

In case you are wondering how hot it's going to get this summer, it's even going to get HOTTER with House Leadership battles, one of which may involve Jody Richards himself.

Stay tuned for me, and check your thermostats on this one.

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Back In Kentucky, Gas Prices Reach $4.00 A Gallon In Bowling Green, As Feds Probe Oil Speculators.

Yes, you heard it right. Yesterday gas prices hit the $4:00 a gallon mark for regular unleaded in my neck of the woods. It may be time to bring out my bike from the garage and start pedaling.

In case if you are wondering, I don't believe we'll see cheap gas prices anymore in my lifetime (gas is about $10.00 per gallon in Europe).

While I opine that we must do more to conserve energy and find alternative sources of energy so that we won't go to war in the Middle East to guard our oil sources or send our President to Saudi Arabia on a "pretty please" mission for more oil, I welcome the news that the Feds have being probing oil speculators for the past six months.

Attacking our energy problems as I have described above, will help us get rid of the three headed monster slowly devouring our economy.

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... Not The Scott McClellan I Knew; Guess I'll Handle This Myself.

You gotta laugh sometimes.


Bill And Hillary (BILLARY) Clinton's "Situational Ethics". But The REAL Question Is Whether They Even Have ANY Ethics.

You can read the piece here.

It is reprinted below:

Tomorrow, when the Rules Committee of the Democratic National Committee meets to determine the fate of Florida and Michigan's delegations to this summer's convention, it will have some company. A group of Hillary Clinton supporters has announced it will demonstrate outside.

That Clinton has impassioned supporters, many of whom link her candidacy to the feminist cause, hardly qualifies as news. And it's certainly true that along the campaign trail Clinton has encountered some outrageously sexist treatment, just as Barack Obama has been on the receiving end of bigoted treatment. (Obama has even been subjected to anti-Muslim bigotry despite the fact that he's not Muslim.) But somehow, a number of Clinton supporters have come to identify the seating of Michigan and Florida not merely with Clinton's prospects but with the causes of democracy and feminism -- an equation that makes a mockery of democracy and feminism.

Clinton herself is largely responsible for this absurdity. Over the past couple of weeks, she has equated the seating of the two delegations with African Americans' struggle for suffrage in the Jim Crow South, and with the efforts of the democratic forces in Zimbabwe to get a fair count of the votes in their presidential election.

Somehow, I doubt that the activists opposing Robert Mugabe in Zimbabwe would appreciate this equation.

But the Clintonistas who have called Saturday's demonstration make it sound as if they'll be marching in Selma in support of a universal right to vote. The DNC, says one of their Web sites, "must honor our core democratic principles and enfranchise the people of Michigan and Florida."

Had Florida and Michigan conducted their primaries the way the other 48 states conducted their own primaries and caucuses -- that is, in accord with the very clear calendar laid down by the DNC well before the primaries began -- then Clinton's marchers would be utterly justified in their claims. But when the two states flouted those rules by moving their primaries outside the prescribed time frame, the DNC, which gave neither state a waiver to do so, decreed that their primaries would not count and enjoined all presidential candidates from campaigning in those states. Obama and John Edwards complied with the DNC's dictates by removing their names from the Michigan ballot. Clinton did not.

Seating Michigan in full would mean the party validates the kind of one-candidate election (well, 1.03, to give Dennis Kucinich, Chris Dodd and Mike Gravel, who also remained on the ballot, their due) that is more common in autocracies than democracies. It would mean rewarding the one serious candidate who didn't remove her name from the ballot when all her rivals, in deference to the national party rules, did just that.

What's particularly outrageous is that the Clinton campaign supported the calendar, and the sanctions against Michigan and Florida, until Clinton won those states and needed to have their delegations seated.

Last August, when the DNC Rules Committee voted to strip Florida (and Michigan, if it persisted in clinging to its date) of its delegates, the Clinton delegates on the committee backed those sanctions. All 12 Clinton supporters on the committee supported the penalties. (The only member of the committee to vote against them was an Obama supporter from Florida.) Harold Ickes, a committee member, leading Clinton strategist and acknowledged master of the political game, said, "This committee feels very strongly that the rules ought to be enforced." Patty Solis Doyle, then Clinton's campaign manager, further affirmed the decision. "We believe Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada and South Carolina play a unique and special role in the nominating process," she said, referring to the four states that the committee authorized to hold the first contests. "And we believe the DNC's rules and its calendar provide the necessary structure to respect and honor that role. Thus, we will be signing the pledge to adhere to the DNC-approved nominating calendar."

Not a single Clinton campaign official or DNC Rules Committee member, much less the candidate herself, said at the time that the sanctions imposed on Florida or Michigan were in any way a patriarchal plot or an affront to democratic values. The threat that these rules posed to our fundamental beliefs was discovered only ex post facto -- the facto in question being Clinton's current need to seat the delegations whose seatings she had opposed when she thought she'd cruise to the nomination.

Clinton's supporters have every right to demonstrate on Saturday, of course. But their larger cause is neither democracy nor feminism; it's situational ethics. To insist otherwise is to degrade democracy and turn feminism into the last refuge of scoundrels.

Meyerson is editor-at-large of American Prospect and the L.A. Weekly.

Editor's comment: Scoundrels, indeed, those Clintons are!

More Scott McClellan, This Time With Katie Couric.

On Electability Issue, It's Strike Three For Hillary BILLARY Clinton.

Read the Houston Chronicle.

Here are excerpts:

The crux of Bill and Hillary Clinton’s argument regarding her "electability" has been two-fold. One is that she is the only candidate who can beat John McCain, based on their assessment of electoral votes needed to win the election, and the other is that without the support of white, middle-class, male voters Obama can’t win in November.


First the Electoral vote issue. Here is an interesting map I found on Politico showing the projections on May 28, 2004, exactly at the same point from that election as we now are from the 2008 election.

Editor's note: Map showed John Kerry leading President Bush 327 to 211 (guess who became president? I'll give you a hint: it was NOT John Kerry!)

Sorry Bill and Hillary, your argument doesn’t hold up. Put that in your pipe and smoke it. Just don’t inhale.

Now on to the white male myth. An article in Salon quotes from an editorial by Democratic pollster Mark Mellman, which points out that losing the white male vote is not nearly as important a factor as is the margin by which that vote is lost. Mellman:

"Mr. Gore lost them by 17 percentage points while winning the national popular vote. Mr. Kerry lost them by 23 points and the country by fewer than two and a half points," Mellman says, going on to observe that, in the latest New York Times/CBS News poll, in the disputed demographic Obama trails presumptive Republican nominee John McCain by just 2 points. Another poll, Mellman says, has him down 7, but even that means he's running well ahead of Gore and Kerry."

Now to putting polls in May in proper perspective to their relevance to an election in November. Since Hillary likes to use 1992 as an example, let’s look at the polls 5 months out from that election. From an article in National Journal:

"At this point in 1992, six different national polls (found in the archives of The Hotline) showed Bill Clinton running third behind both George Bush and Ross Perot. Clinton received an average of 26 percent of the vote in late May and early June. He was elected president five months later with 43 percent of the popular vote."

As to the Democratic voters who say they will vote for McCain if Obama is nominated, the article point out that these remarks are most likely made in the heat of battle and uses this analogy:

"Asking Clinton supporters whether they'd pick Obama in the fall is like asking a couple in the middle of a divorce whether they think they'll be friends next week. This question will be much more relevant after the summer is over and everyone's had a chance to, as Bill Clinton would say, "chill out."

Strike three, you’re out. Take a seat on the bench, better luck next time.

Comment: It's strike three, indeed.

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Thursday, May 29, 2008

DNC Rules Committee To Meet Tomorrow To Deliver Bad News To Hillary BILLARY Clinton. Dean, Pelosi And Reid Say Primary Over By "This Time Next Week".

Read more here and start rehearsing to say: Bye, bye BILLARY!

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Barack Obama's White Preacher?

Is this Barack Obama's White Preacher?


Scott Mcclellan Is Not Sure Of John McCain, But He Is Intriqued By (And May Vote For) Barack Obama.

You can possibly count Scott as one who may have been "BURNED" by the Republican brand.

Read about it here.

It is time to "re-brand" the party, guys.

Oh by the way, remember the Robert Murdock story below, he predicts a Democratic landslide.

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Texas Supreme Court: State Action Removing Children From Polygamist Sect Was Unlawful.

Read the story here. I'll post the court's opinion here later. All I have are the concurring and dissenting opinions. I'll rather wait to post the entire opinion so come back later.

One enduring legacy of this case is that we operate under a constitutional form of government, and that constitution protects ALL of us -- the liked and the unliked -- from government overreaching and OPPRESSION.

Regardless of how the government may be well intentioned, it MUST do so within the confines of the constitution.

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"Freedom Works" Wants You To Tell Your Senator To Stop Mortgage Bailout Bill.

Here is an email I received today I thought I share with you:

Dear Osi,

Freedom Works is heading up a massive effort to stop the Mortgage Bailout bill scheduled to come before the Senate next week. We are asking folks to call Senator McConnell's office at 502-582-6304 or 859-224-8286 to ask the Senator to vote against the bill. It is a $300 billion bail out of people that made bad economic decisions, and it includes a $500 million dollar tax increase. Freedom Works has 53,000 signers for a petition against this bill, which you find at

Please pass this info along to your readers!

Michael Mruk
Freedom Works

Editor's note: When I replied to Mr. Mruk asking him what was wrong with the bill, he replied thus:


Basically, the reason why the bill is bad is that those small amount of homeowners who purchased homes they could not afford (by taking out a subprime mortgage, which stipulates that a person can have, let’s say a 2% rate mortgage which can, due to the rate of interest, be raised to 7% after a given amount of time), rather than waiting to take out a fixed-rate mortgage, (which at the time was more expensive.), are being bailed out by the Federal Government and EVERYONE’S tax dollars. Although we hear a lot about the rampant foreclosures of homes on the news, the facts and figures clearly show that only 2% of people engaged in risky subprime loans and lost their homes by foreclosure, while the other 98% of the population either are renting, had a fixed rate mortgage (or were able to pay a subprime loan) or owned their homes outright.

What is clearly unfair is the Federal Government requiring taxpayers to fund this bill, when the majority of taxpayers on a national scale had no problem living within their means. Another key element here to consider is that this is only a quick fix: if lenders see that when they give out loans that can’t be repaid, the Federal Government, and here, specifically the FHA, will come to their aid. This will not stop the subprime mess, but will only set up a precedent for banks to be reckless with their money in the future. For more information and to see how many people in both KY and nationwide are against this bill, check out , for a more in-depth look. If you have any further questions, please contact me. I will be in the office here until 5:30pm. Thanks for your interest and I hope that this helps!!

Michael Mruk

Freedom Works



I have long admired President Bush for the courage of his convictions. Because he didn't cut and run we have won a great victory in Iraq, one that will pay enormous dividends the next few years.

But the Bush years were far less successful than they should have been largely because of the mediocre people Bush brought with him. Among the worst was Scott McClellan, a guy with no work experience save helping his kooky mom, before becoming a deputy to Karen Hughes. McClellan was so bad as press secretary he joined Paul O'Neill and good'ol Brownie from FEMA as one of the few Bushies who actually got fired.

Now he has his revenge, putting his name to a fake memoir a lefty publisher ghost-wrote for him. What a shame, there must be some better way of finding qualified, effective people in the administration when the GOP has the White House. Far from the best and brightest, we get too many of the dorks and dullards.

Rupert Murdoch: "Barack Obama Will Win The Election". On John McCain: "I Think He Has A Lot Of Problems." WOW.

Here's a peek:

Rupert Murdoch -- Chairman of News Corp, new WSJ owner, and longtime torchbearer for conservative politics -- said this about Barack Obama: "He is a rock star. It's fantastic" "I love what he is saying about education." "I don't think he will win Florida.....but he will win in Ohio and the election". "I am anxious to meet him." "I want to see if he will walk the walk."

About the presumptive Republican nominee, Murdoch said, "McCain is a friend of mine. He's a patriot. But he's unpredicatble. Doesn't seem to know much about the economy. He has been in Congress a long time, and you have to make a lot of compromises. So what's he really stand for?... I think he has a lot of problems."

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No Matter Scott McClellan's Motive For Telling Us "What Happened" With President Bush Is, Questioning His Veracity Is NOT An Option!

This is one of those situations where the post label "Keeping them honest" applies VERY applicable.

While I don't know about any of you commenting on this site or reading from home or work, I can tell you that I CANNOT WAIT TO GET MY HANDS ON THAT BOOK to find out "what happened" to the idealist George Bush I voted for in 2000 (notice there is NO mention of 2004).

In my book, Scott deserves a medal for MERITORIOUS service to his country.

Oh, and yes, it was Bush himself who "outed" CIA Agent, Valerie Plame.



Republican Party Of Kentucky: Senator Mitch McConnell Needs Your Help Today.

Fellow Republicans,

If you didn’t realize already that this year’s Senate race in Kentucky is going to be unlike any campaign we’ve seen before, the erroneous reports this week that Senator Mitch McConnell is trailing Bruce Lunsford in the polls should be a wake-up call to
all of us.

As it turns out, that poll was widely criticized and called “delusional,” “stupid,” and “flawed” by respected political pundits. And, as we found out, Senator McConnell had the foresight to know that after the primary Bruce Lunsford’s liberal handlers would immediately start trying to inflate his chances of victory this fall, so the Senator had his own poll ready to release that shows him with an 11-point lead.

That said, we cannot take anything for granted in the current political environment. We must do all we can to re-elect Senator McConnell. Please take a moment now to sign-up to receive updates from the McConnell campaign and to volunteer your time to help.

Washington Democrats and out-of-state liberal organizations like and countless others are already waging war in Kentucky in an effort to defeat our senior Senator for one reason and one reason alone – he remains extremely effective. Read this article, and you’ll see what I mean.

Bruce Lunsford is the hand-picked candidate of New York Senator Chuck Schumer who leads the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee for the liberal majority in Washington. Do you know what Bruce’s qualifications are that have made him so appealing to leading liberals nationwide?
Lunsford is extremely wealthy.
That’s right. He’s loaded.

If you’re waiting for a longer list of attributes that qualify this man to be your next U.S. Senator in the minds of national leaders like Senator Schumer – you will have an endless wait. He’s rich. That’s it. And, he is all too happy to boost his own ego by spending lavishly on this race. He spent over $2 million from his own pocket just to squeak out a primary win last Tuesday. Prior to that he had spent over $14 million of his money in two previous runs for office.

You see, Washington liberals don’t care about who represents Kentucky in the U.S. Senate – as long as it’s not Mitch McConnell – for the very reasons I mentioned above. Senator McConnell has blocked tax increases, insisted on funding our troops overseas, fought for increased energy security, prevented the loss of secret ballots in labor union elections, blocked increases in utility rates, held out all the stops to ensure that we confirm conservative judges to the bench, and the list goes on.

They simply wanted a wealthy candidate with a huge ego who could be fooled into spending tens of millions from his own fortune to parrot the talking points and attack lines of national liberal leaders in an effort to defeat Senator McConnell. Kentuckians won’t allow that to happen.

We need your help today. Sign up now to get involved in Senator McConnell’s campaign. Here are ways you can help:

- Sign up to receive email updates from Senator McConnell
- Sign Senator McConnell’s petition calling for more domestic energy production to lower gas prices
- Volunteer to help in the campaign office or in your county
- Contribute financially
- Email your friends and neighbors

Thanks for all you do for our Republican party. With your help, Senator McConnell will be reelected this fall and will continue his effective service to Kentucky and the nation.

Steve Robertson, Chairman


Barack Obama: "McCain Used Bush To Raise ... $3.5 million ... While Ebracing An Unpopular President And Taking Advantage Of Well-heeled Republicans."

Here's the email:

Right now you have a unique opportunity to go head-to-head with George W. Bush.

This week, John McCain and George Bush gathered behind closed doors, away from the cameras, to raise money for McCain's campaign.

McCain used Bush to raise a reported $3.5 million from a group of about 500 Republican contributors.

That's a lot of money that will undoubtedly be used to attack us and make the case to continue George Bush's failed policies.

But I have an idea about how we can match it. And we don't need George Bush.


As the presumptive nominee of his party, John McCain has had a three-month head start to build his campaign. In that time, he's made his fundraising strategy clear.

In the words of one reporter, the gala fundraiser with Bush was "part of McCain's delicate effort to find the balance between embracing an unpopular president and taking advantage of his huge continuing draw with well-heeled Republicans."

We'll see more of this dance in the weeks and months ahead, but we already know the steps.

As we prepare to take on John McCain, now is our first chance to show that a grassroots movement of people giving only what they can afford can go toe-to-toe with the Bush-McCain fundraising machine.

And with the last three contests of the Democratic primary coming up in the next five days, the resources we're building right now are an urgent necessity.

Help build our movement by making a matching donation today:

John McCain can run from the cameras, but he can't hide from the fact that he's aiming to continue George Bush's policies for a disastrous third term.

Let's show that we're ready to take him on.

Thank you,


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Hillary BILLARY Clinton Is Not Only A Liar, But She Is Now Delusional.

Here is the first two paragraphs of a solicitation for money email she is sending to her supporters and you can decide for yourself:

Have you seen the general election polls lately? They consistently show that we'll beat John McCain in November. In a national head-to-head match and in the critical swing states, the numbers show I'm the best candidate to take back the White House for Democrats.

That is why it's critical that we stay in this race and keep fighting for every last vote. We can win the nomination if we extend our popular vote lead, and that means putting everything we have into the final races. With just a few days before the voters in Puerto Rico head to the polls, our campaign is working hard -- and your support is making the difference.

Editor's note: You notice she NEVER tells you what those polls are? That's because they do NOT exist.

"... best candidate to take back the White House"? How does she ignore her self described "baggage" -- and does she think the Republican Party will ignore her baggage? Watch the video below:

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An Unanswered Question: Is Barack Obama TOO White For Kentucky?

You gotta laugh sometimes, and thanks to Joel Pett, we can today.

But check Newsweek after laughing. That is actually NO laughing matter.


Let Them Eat Cake?

With the budget situation as DIRE as it looks, one can understand why this story is making news: it reminds one of Maria Antoinette urging her subjects to eat cake in the face of a dearth of grain to make bread.

But while, the subject matter may deserve the story, one would hope that there are other similar stories that can be brought to press. Otherwise, the story makes it appear that a particular newspaper was picking on a particular Senator, with an (R) besides his name.


Here Comes ANOTHER Kentucky Special Legislative Session.

We told you all that there is a special legislative session in Kentucky's future, after the concluded DISASTROUS regular session that produced -- almost NOTHING.

Now the Governor has suggested that he'll call one to deal with the state's pension fund, if the Lawmakers will agree and reach a compromise beforehand. The Governor expects to call a session to start by June 23rd.

While we applaud the efforts to deal with the pension problem, and while we certainly applaud the Governor for waiting until the details are worked out before the special session starts, we wonder why the issue of raising cigarette taxes is NOT discussed as a part of the session's agenda.

It should be.

And most importantly, we wonder why no one is asking why Kentucky has formed a TERRIBLE habit of having annual sessions to be followed by annual special sessions.

Kentucky tax payers deserve NOT to have both.

We can either settle for annual sessions or we settle for semi-annual sessions to be followed by a special session, if actually needed due to EXTRAORDINARY CIRCUMSTANCES.

The system we have now is nothing but a JOKE, except that no one should be laughing at this SERIOUS matter and the tax payers are left holding an (EMPTY) bag!

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Duck Morris: Hillary [BILLARY Clinton] Is The New [George] Wallace.

Here's Dick Morris' piece in the New York Post:

In its final days, Hillary Clinton's 2008 presidential campaign has come to echo George Wallace's 1968 run.

Like Clinton, Wallace as a candidate stalked the Northeast exploiting white anger. Like her, he bypassed the nation's more educated and liberal parts to focus squarely on those who felt left behind, rallying animosity against elites.

But behind the mask of populism, it was race that fueled Wallace's campaign from the start. And it is race that has brought new life to Clinton's campaign in its final days.

Like Wallace, Clinton doesn't address racial prejudice squarely, but cloaks the appeal to our darker fears in seemingly neutral issues. He used opposition to school busing; she has played off Obama's alleged elitism and ties to the Rev. Jeremiah Wright.

To be fair, neither appeal is totally invalid.

Busing failed to integrate our schools and led, instead, to greater segregation as whites fled to the suburbs and/or to private schools.

Rev. Wright, meanwhile, is enough to scare the daylights out of anybody. To have a president who sat willingly in his pews, absorbing and seemingly condoning his hatred, is a worrisome prospect indeed.

But the basic fact remains that Clinton, like Wallace, is relying on race. Their tactics are similar, appealing to the same kind of voters for parallel reasons.

No, Clinton isn't a racist - but she's still using race to win elections. (So, by the way, did Bill Clinton in 1992, with his criticism of Sister Souljah and his much-publicized backing for capital punishment.)

Racism is as racism does. When a politician consciously exploits racial divisions, fears and animosity to win an election, he or she deserves condemnation.

But Hillary Clinton is neither a racist nor a populist; she's an opportunist. Discovering that the establishment consensus has left behind millions of disgruntled voters - the angry white men of yesteryear - she, like Wallace before her, is creating new fissures in the electorate in the hopes of upsetting a harmony that doesn't serve her ends.

Her advocates say that Clinton has found her voice. But this new voice is but an echo of a a discordant note in a discredited past.

In the coal mines of Kentucky and West Virginia and the former factory towns of Western Pennsylvania and Central Ohio, the anger into which this voice taps remains alive, hot and glowing. But most of America has moved beyond prejudice, beyond diversity, beyond even tolerance, into a post-racial era.

It was a proud feature of our politics in 2008 that we seemed to have crested this wave of progress - until Clinton, embittered by frustrated ambition, blew on the smoldering embers of racial fear to stage a comeback for the nomination.

It isn't her proudest moment.

Editor's comment: I told ya'll so.

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Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Dream Ticket For Democrats? Nope. It's More Like A WORST Nightmare Scenario For Barack Obama.

Don't you agree?

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Kentucky Senator Mitch McConnell Slams "Bogus" Rasmussen Poll.


The events of yesterday illustrate what we can expect for the remaining months of this election year. Washington Liberals will try to rally left-wing partisans around their hand-picked multi-millionaire candidate, Bruce Lunsford, to try to defeat me this fall.

In case you haven’t seen the news coverage already, my opponent trumpeted the results of a bogus poll that showed him leading me by 5 points in this race.

Immediately the poll in question was called “delusional” by one noted political commentator, Stu Rothenberg. “It’s not only silly, it’s stupid,” he went on to say. And he wasn’t alone. The poll was also panned by Jennifer Duffy of the respected Cook Political Report who said, “I pay almost no attention to Rasmussen polls. The methodology is really flawed, and they have a terrible track record.”

Regardless of the merits of these cooked-up poll numbers, I hope the determination demonstrated by my opposition will serve to motivate you and others to sign up now to help me win this race.

I expected they would try to generate some sort of “bounce” out of Lunsford’s primary win (even though more than 300,000 Kentucky Democrats cast their ballots against Lunsford), so I had my own survey done by my long-time and widely respected pollster, Jan van Lohuizen. Our survey was conducted in the two days following the primary and shows me with a healthy 11-point lead. You can read the full report Jan prepared for me here.

That being said, everyone understands that the political environment nationally is very challenging. That’s why our campaign has been on television for months reminding voters about all we’ve been able to accomplish for Kentucky. And that’s why I started the general election campaign the day after the primary talking about what we need to accomplish in the future and challenging Bruce Lunsford to take a position on issues like the Senate majority’s budget that is the largest ever considered in Congress. In typical fashion, we were reminded yet again that for Bruce, this campaign is not about substantive discussion of important issues, but instead for him it is about name-calling and personal attacks. Kentuckians deserve better.

One of the critical issues facing our country and punishing our pocketbooks is the high cost of energy. In the Senate, I offered a plan that would allow more domestic energy production to bring prices down, but so far that plan has been blocked by the liberal majority. As you know, it will take a multi-faceted effort to tackle this problem. Congress must act now to allow conservation, innovation and exploration measures to go into effect as soon as possible. The McConnell Plan does just that.

I’ve launched a petition where you can register your support for legislation that provides an action plan for reducing our dependence on foreign oil. My plan champions innovative clean coal technology that is important to Kentucky’s economy, encourages more energy exploration and production in the U.S., and promotes additional conservation measures to take a comprehensive approach to lowering prices.

I need your help to prepare for the battle ahead. Now is the time to get involved in this campaign. There are many ways to get involved, and there are ways you can help me that don’t require much of your time. Please click here now to learn more.

Thank you for your encouragement and support. With your help, we will win this fall and together there is much we can accomplish for Kentucky and the nation.


Mitch McConnell
United States Senator

Editor's note: Please click on the right hand TeamMitch logo to donate to the campaign.

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Barack Obama Launches Ad In Puerto Rico.

Bye, bye BILLARY.

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In Kentucky, Brett Guthrie For Congress Re-Launches Website.

Here is the press release:

Guthrie for Congress Announces Re-launch of Web Site

(Bowling Green) Brett Guthrie for Congress has re-launched in preparation for the General Election campaign. The re-designed site will offer more information about Brett, his position on various issues, and about the campaign itself. It also offers people a chance to donate, volunteer, and learn about Brett Guthrie’s background in the military and as a manufacturer in South Central Kentucky.

“We are encouraging folks to log on and join the Brett Guthrie for Congress team,” said campaign manager Brian D. Smith. “If you can donate financially, volunteer your time, or just need to learn more about why Brett Guthrie is the right choice in the upcoming election, please log on. And don’t hesitate to contact the campaign through the website if we can answer any questions for you.”

On the web:

DNC Lawyers: Party Rules Committee "Lacks Legal Authority" To Sit Full Florida And Michigan Delegations. Bye, bye Hillary (BILLARY) Clinton.

Here's the DNC Lawyers' memo.

And in Florida, a Federal Judge has just ruled that the DNC decides its rules for its convention, and that the DNC can discipline states who violate those rules. The case was previously reported here.

BILLARY Clinton is now desperately in a "how we win" email to supporters, is saying "We are depending on the voters of Puerto Rico in our fight to secure the nomination".

Now feel FREE to join me in saying: Bye, bye BILLARY.

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While We Wait For Our FREE Redbox Movie Code, Hillary (BILLARY) Clinton Needs Your Help To Make "A Critical Decision"! Bye, bye BILLARY!!

Check it out below:

We need your help to make a critical decision -- our next official campaign t-shirt.

We recently launched a contest to design a campaign t-shirt, and I couldn't believe the incredible response. We got thousands of great entries. They were creative, inspirational, funny, and beautiful. It was amazing to see the devotion to my mom's campaign come through in each t-shirt. Thank you to everyone who submitted a design!

It wasn't easy to narrow it down, but we've chosen five we think are particularly great, and now we need your help in making our final decision. Please vote for your favorite design -- the winning shirt will go on sale in our online campaign store.

Please click here to see the finalists and vote for your favorite.

Thanks again for everything you're doing to help my mom!

Go Hillary!

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A New FREE Redbox Movie Code Will Be Posted Later Today.

Please come back for a new today ONLY FREE Redbox movie code. This post will be updated with the code.

There are many good movies out yesterday that you can use the code to rent for FREE. So check back later today -- probably after lunch.

Update: Try MEMORIAL. The Code may be good beyond today. Enjoy!

Update #2: In addition to the code I gave above, here is ANOTHER one that will ONLY work today. It is:




The Department of Public Advocacy Notifies Local Judges of Service Reduction.

Below is DPA news release for your information:

FRANKFORT, KY (May 28, 2008) - - - The following letter was mailed to local judges on Friday, May 23, by Public Advocate Ernie Lewis. This letter gives notice to local judges of the DPA’s plan for reducing services necessary to achieve ethical caseloads beginning July 1, 2008. This is the first time since 1991 that the Department has had to reduce services. Cuts are necessary because of the 2008 Kentucky General Assembly’s failure to fully fund the Department in FY09.

“Dear Judge X,

It is with considerable disappointment that I write this letter to you announcing service reductions by the Department of Public Advocacy. This is a follow-up to the letter I wrote to you in March encouraging you to contact your legislator regarding the budget for indigent defense. Unfortunately, after I sent you that letter, the budget situation for DPA only worsened. The General Assembly failed to pass a budget that would fully fund indigent defense in Kentucky. My only choice now as an executive branch administrator is to tailor service delivery to the enacted budget. I will be doing so knowing that the Kentucky and United States Constitutions mandate that we provide virtually all of the services that I will be cutting. As someone who has devoted almost 31 years of my legal practice to indigent defense, that is my most profound regret as I announce these actions.

DPA is a statewide public defender system committed to implementing the mandates of the U.S. Supreme Court in Gideon, Argersinger, and Shelton. KRS Chapter 31 established the Department of Public Advocacy as a statewide public defender program. DPA is responsible for representing all indigents accused of a crime or mental state for which their liberty is threatened. Today, all of the counties except for Jefferson County have chosen to have the Commonwealth fund indigent defense in its entirety. DPA does so through the most cost-effective model known—delivering services through 30 full-time offices at approximately $254 per case. The private bar is involved through the provision of conflict services in approximately 3000-4000 cases. Overall, DPA handled over 148,000 cases in FY07. DPA has a model enabling statute, an active and conscientious oversight board, an excellent training program, and a cost-effective delivery system. Unfortunately, DPA has been starved for resources historically; a history that now threatens the full provision of the right to counsel for indigents.

DPA requested a budget that would have allowed its attorneys to handle all appointed caseloads. DPA requested a budget that would have been sufficient to provide competent legal representation over the next biennium. Had the budget passed it would have allowed DPA to comply with caseload standards consistently recommended over the past three decades. The basis for the budget was the reduction of caseloads to no more than 350 new cases per lawyer in our rural offices and no more than 450 cases per lawyer in our four urban offices. In addition, DPA’s budget request contemplated a 3% increase in caseloads over the biennium, a conservative request and estimate given the 8% annual increase in caseloads since 2000. DPA based its funding request upon historical caseload data.

The General Assembly slashed DPA’s budget. In FY08, DPA’s amended budget is $40.1 million. Even at that level, it is estimated that the FY08 budget did not fund 30 of DPA’s positions. The Governor and the House agreed to fund DPA at $39 million in FY09, a $1.1 million decrease. The Senate cut DPA’s budget to $37.2 million. The General Assembly, after the free conference committee made its decisions, funded DPA at $37.8 million for FY09. This cut $2.3 million from DPA’s amended FY08 budget.

DPA can only deliver $37.8 million in legal services. In FY07, lawyers for DPA carried caseloads 40% above the upper limits set by the National Advisory Commission for public defenders. DPA lawyers have handled excessive caseloads for many years. Most DPA lawyers work significant numbers of hours of overtime. DPA cannot deliver unlimited legal services and cannot be expected to deliver the same services for $37.8 million that it was able to deliver for $40.1 million. Rather, DPA can only deliver the legal services for which it is funded. For FY09, the General Assembly has funded indigent defense services in the amount of $37.8 million. Like all other Executive Branch agencies, DPA must reduce its service levels consistent with the enacted budget.

DPA has a responsibility to ensure ethical caseloads for its attorneys. In order to perform its statutory duties in compliance with state and constitutional requirements, DPA has a professional responsibility not to impose unethical caseload levels on its lawyers. ABA Formal Opinion 06-441 was issued on May 13, 2006 by the American Bar Association Standing Committee on Ethics and Professional Responsibility. It states with clarity that all “lawyers, including public defenders and other lawyers who, under court appointment or government contract, represent indigent persons charged with criminal offenses, must provide competent and diligent representation.” It adds that a “lawyer’s workload ‘must be controlled so that each matter may be handled competently.’” It cites with approval the ABA Ten Principles of a public defense delivery system (2002) which require that defense counsel’s workload be controlled “to permit the rendering of quality representation.” The American Council of Chief Defenders Ethics Opinion 03-01(2003) states that a “chief executive of an agency providing public defense services is ethically prohibited from accepting a number of cases which exceeds the capacity of the agency’s attorneys to provide competent, quality representation in every case….When confronted with a prospective overloading of cases or reductions in funding or staffing which will cause the agency’s attorneys to exceed such capacity, the chief executive of a public defense agency is ethically required to refuse appointment to any and all such excess cases.” As the Public Advocate and chief administrator of the statewide public defender system, I and the leadership of DPA have the responsibility to control the workloads of our lawyers.

Based upon budgeted funding, the caseloads of trial attorneys in many DPA offices will reach unethical levels if appropriate action is not taken. As mentioned above, even the amended budget for FY08 failed to fund approximately 30 positions. The enacted budget for FY09 fails to fund 54 positions at a minimum and perhaps as many as 70 positions. 30-40 trial attorney positions will have to remain vacant during FY09 for the budget to balance. Positions presently vacant will for the most part have to remain unfilled, and newly vacated positions will in all likelihood remain unfilled throughout FY09. I hope to avoid layoffs. In FY07, trial lawyers (at full staffing) carried an average of 436 new cases per lawyer. Under the enacted budget for FY09, trial attorneys’ caseloads would soar near or above 500 cases per lawyer, far above the national standards. While a few of our offices will maintain ethical caseload levels with no services cut, most of our offices have vacancies that cannot be filled and action must be taken to control caseloads or ethical limits will be breached.

The Post-Trial Division is Equally Affected by this Cut: In addition to its trial clients, DPA also has a legal duty to represent clients on appeal, in post-conviction proceedings, and in juvenile post-dispositional actions. Unfortunately, our funding for these services has been cut significantly. This would result in significant staff shortages in most years, but this year it is a particular challenge because approximately 10% of the post trial division is scheduled to retire this year. In light of budget language directing the Finance Cabinet to recapture the salary of retiring employees, we cannot say at this time whether the Post-Trial Division will have its budget further reduced as a result of these retirements. Regardless, it is a certainty that the Post-Trial Division will be facing critical staffing shortages throughout the year. These shortages will have the following impacts on post trial clients in the trial and appellate courts:

Appeals Courts: Appellate courts currently expect, in general, that a brief be filed within 180 days of assignment. Existing resource shortages make it difficult to meet those deadlines. As staff is reduced further, it will no longer be possible for an attorney to practice ethically before the appellate courts and meet those deadlines. In the coming weeks, the Post Trial Division Director will be communicating with the appellate courts to determine whether they would prefer that DPA withdraw from excessive cases altogether, or authorize that those cases be filed later than 180 days from the date of assignment.

Circuit/District Courts: The Post Conviction and Juvenile Post Disposition Branches have statewide responsibilities but are located primarily in Frankfort. Both branches will be more closely scrutinizing cases to determine whether they meet the criterion for representation under KRS 31.110(2)(c), 31.110(4), and 15A.065.(6). In order to facilitate that decision, the branches will be seeking extensions of time to review those records and file appropriate pleadings. Counsel will also be seeking to conduct routine motions, such as scheduling motions, telephonically in order to reduce travel costs.

DPA must live within its budget. DPA has few choices. Unlike universities, DPA cannot raise tuition. Unlike the prison system, DPA cannot delay capital projects. All DPA can do is reduce the size of its staff, since our budget consists entirely of personnel and the operating expenses to support the personnel.

DPA has no money to pay for conflict counsel. As previously mentioned, 145,000 or so cases are handled each year by full-time staff. In another 3000-4000 cases, DPA is obligated by legal and ethical requirements to obtain private counsel to represent persons with whom DPA has a conflict of interest, usually in situations involving codefendants. DPA spends approximately $1.2 million each year to contract with private attorneys to handle conflict cases. This has proven grossly insufficient over the years. Private attorneys are handling conflict cases on a nearly pro bono basis for approximately $300-500 per case for mostly felony representation. DPA has no money to pay even this small amount in FY09. DPA has been cut $2.3 million in FY09, and thus will not fund conflict cases in FY09.

That does not mean that DPA is not responsible for providing conflict counsel. DPA will continue to identify private attorneys willing to handle conflict cases. DPA will simply not be able to provide compensation for those attorneys willing to take cases.

DPA will be asking the courts to order the Finance Cabinet to pay for conflict counsel as well as other counsel as a necessary governmental expense. The dilemma that now exists is that the Commonwealth of Kentucky is obligated to provide counsel to poor people charged with crimes, but the legislature has failed to fund that obligation. DPA will assert that the solution to this is for courts to enter orders requiring the Commonwealth to pay for private counsel. DPA will provide to you names of counsel willing to take conflict or other service reduction cases.

Another solution is for courts to decide in advance that a person charged with a crime is not subject to a loss of liberty. The provision of counsel is mandated when a person is charged with a “serious crime” as defined in KRS 31.100 (4). However, there is no constitutional right to state funded counsel where a person charged with a crime is not facing jail time and where there will be no other consequences later if counsel is not provided. Courts and prosecutors can explore the possibility of dismissal and diversion for numerous low level misdemeanor offenses where jail time is not intended or appropriate.

Many offices will reduce services in additional cases. Reducing the funding for conflict cases will not necessarily be the only reduction in services. In order to maintain ethical caseloads while being unable to fill present and future vacancies, DPA will have to reduce caseloads in additional categories of cases in some offices. I have written you previously regarding the possible categories of cases involved in these service reductions. They include family court cases, status offender cases, probation and parole revocation cases, and some Class A and B misdemeanors. In addition, DPA will not be providing services in involuntary commitment cases under KRS 202A. The Trial Division Director is presently evaluating the vacancies in each office in every local jurisdiction and working with the regional managers and directing attorneys to craft an office-specific plan to achieve ethical caseload levels.

Some offices will not be affected by service reductions other than in the area of conflict cases. As mentioned, each office will be treated differently outside of the conflict arena. Some offices with lower caseloads and no vacancies may not have any other services reduced. All offices (outside of Louisville) will be affected by the elimination of funding for conflict cases or attorneys in involuntary commitment cases.

The Trial Division Director, Damon Preston, will be sending letters to each directing attorney ordering specific service reductions for each defender office outside of Louisville Metro. The directing attorney for each office serving your courts will then meet with you and provide you a copy of the letter and give you advance notice of the service reductions in your courts. The Director of the Louisville Metro Public Defender’s Office, Dan Goyette, is currently reviewing the budget and evaluating the workload of his office, and, after conferring with his board of directors, will determine the nature and extent of any service reductions that may be necessary. He intends to meet with the Chief Judges of the Jefferson District and Circuit Courts before the commencement of the new fiscal year to discuss his office’s unique situation and whatever decisions are made with respect to the provision of services. We will keep you informed at every step of this process and have no intention of taking any action for which you are not given advance notice.

Vacancies have the potential to change the service reduction plans of individual offices. DPA has approximately 4 attorneys leaving the organization each month. If this turnover rate continues during FY09, and if DPA remains unable to fill vacancies due to the budget cuts, the offices affected by the service reduction plan may change. If a change occurs, you will be notified.

The Public Advocacy Commission supports this service reduction plan. The service reduction plan as outlined above was presented to the Public Advocacy Commission at its February 29th meeting. The Commission is a 12 member oversight board, 7 of whom are appointed by the Governor, 3 by the Deans of the law schools, and 2 by the Court of Justice. The Commission thereafter passed unanimously a resolution supportive of this plan. In essence, the Commission resolved that the “Public Advocate has no choice but to implement some or all of his service reduction plan. Be it further resolved that the Public Advocacy Commission encourages Kentucky policy makers to fund the Department of Public Advocacy sufficiently to ensure that public defenders do not carry excessive caseloads.”

AOC and DPA are working together to ensure that only those eligible for a public defender are appointed a public defender. The Blue Ribbon Group encouraged the AOC and DPA to work together to ensure that eligibility decisions were made in a uniform, consistent and reliable fashion. Most recently, the Chief Justice initiated an Affidavit of Indigency Committee “to review the affidavit of indigency form utilized by our courts. It has been suggested that the current form requires too little information and results in the appointment of public defenders in circumstances that may not be entirely appropriate.” Public defender caseloads have increased by 8% annually since 2000, irrespective of the crime rate. It is hoped that the work of this committee will be that those who are eligible, but only those who are eligible, will be appointed a public defender in the future so that the diminishing resources of DPA can be used wisely and effectively.

The Lexington Public Defender’s Office will be severely affected by the service reductions. The service reduction plan will have its most significant impact in Lexington. DPA requested $2.8 million annually for the Lexington Office. This office handles over 10,500 cases annually. DPA requested sufficient funds to hire 22 lawyers, thereby lowering caseloads to approximately 450 for this urban office. For comparison purposes, prosecutors in Lexington are funded at $5.9 million with 37 prosecutors. The Governor and the House lowered the amount requested to $1.8 million. The Senate budget zeroed the Lexington budget out entirely. The budget as enacted fixed the budget at $1.5 million. That budget will allow for only 16-17 lawyers who would carry caseloads of over 600 cases per lawyer, a clearly unethical level. This budget is not in parity with the prosecution function in Lexington. Principle #8 of the ABA Ten Principles of a public defense delivery system (2002) is that “[t]here is parity between defense counsel and the prosecution with respect to resources…” That principle was violated by the budget as enacted by the 2008 General Assembly. As a result, DPA will be reducing significantly the number of cases handled by public defenders in the Lexington courts, with as many as 2000-3000 cases to be affected.

I understand that these actions will affect the lives of many. I do not take these actions lightly. In fact, as I end my third (and final) term as Public Advocate, I am profoundly disappointed by having to take these steps. I am not unmindful of the effect this will have on the lives of the clients for which DPA is responsible. However, I do not believe that I have any choice. Without this action, our attorneys cannot properly represent their clients. I will not assign unethical caseload levels to our attorneys. The Commonwealth must live up to its responsibilities to provide counsel to the people it arrests and charges with criminal offenses for which they can be deprived of life or liberty.

The outlook for FY10 is guarded. The enacted budget for FY10 increases somewhat in FY10 from $37.8 million to $41.6 million. $41.6 million is approximately $1.5 million more than the amended FY08 budget of $40.1, which did not have funding in it for full staffing. This increase depends upon an improving economy, and we will have to see what happens with caseloads. Whether the service reduction plan continues into FY10 remains to be seen.

This is an action for which I am ultimately responsible and any sanctions or retribution should be directed at me rather than a directing attorney or individual staff attorney. I fully anticipate that there will be some judges who attempt to put pressure upon our local lawyers to represent people outside of this service reduction plan. I would ask that courts respect the separation of powers and the independence of the Department of Public Advocacy. I am the person who serves as chief administrator and appointing authority of DPA, and I am ultimately responsible for these decisions. Any pressure placed upon DPA’s local lawyers to represent people outside of this service reduction plan would be inappropriate. I will make every effort to be responsive and available to the judiciary as this service reduction plan is implemented.

Please contact me with any questions regarding these actions.


Ernie Lewis

Kentucky Public Advocate

Cc: The Honorable Steven L. Beshear, Governor of the Commonwealth of Kentucky

Hon. Joseph E. Lambert, Chief Justice of the Kentucky Supreme Court

J. Michael Brown, Secretary of the Justice and Public Safety Cabinet

The Honorable Jack Conway, Attorney General

Robert C. Ewald, Chair of the Public Advocacy Commission

Ms. Mary Lassiter, State Budget Director

Damon Preston, Trial Division Director

Tim Arnold, Post-Trial Division Director

Dan Goyette, Executive Director of Louisville Metro Public Defender’s Office

All DPA Directing Attorneys”