Saturday, April 29, 2006

Shoeleather Democracy Saturday

From Yellow Dog Sammy at Ohio 2006:

Today I attended one of many local canvassing events across the country initiated by the Democratic National Committee, this one at the home of blogger Cindy Zawadzki of HeightsMom. Meena Morey Chandra arrived (with the Chandra triplets) and spoke briefly on behalf of her husband, Attorney General candidate Subodh Chandra (D-Cleveland).

You can read more here.

puddleriver has a post up about the the peace march in NYC and tabling for Tasini (who is running against Hillary Clinton in the primary).

Day was beautiful and cool. Our table was two down from Billionaires for Bush, and two up from the NY Green Party. Fantastically easy getting people to sign the "troops out, NOW" petition. Everyone was in a great mood, but a little sad: as one woman, a little younger than I said: "Why are we here, *again*?

I asked a policeman if he didn't want to sign my petition, and said he'd love to, but his hand was worn completely out from signing petitions [grin]. . . .

After, we went to a little restaurant for a celebration for Tasini volunteers, who included: Raging Grannies, Code pink, and assorted other young and old, black and white, volunteers. And Jonathan Tasini, who actually Marched in the protest.
I noticed in the comments at puddle's blog that one of the 101st Fighting Keyboardists has paid a visit. Such patriotism. I am humbled, truly. Bordering on verklempt, or something like that.

There's also a post about the NYC peace march up at Booman Tribune, and it's got a lot of pictures. has a post called "One Million Doors" which includes photos of Howard Dean with his canvassing group in Charlotte, NC.

So, what else is going on?

What fresh hell is this?

I've had this expression rattling around in my head ever since I saw it recently in a diary on My Left Wing. I know I'd heard it before that--probably from my brother--but didn't know where it originated. Here's what I found on Everything2.Com

A line attributed many times to Shakespeare but actually it's from American author/critic/poet and wit Dorothy Parker. She is reported to have exclaimed "What fresh hell is this?" when her train of thought was interrupted by a telephone. She then started using it in place of "hello" when answering the phone or a knock at her door. In many ways she can be considered the patron saint of all tech support workers.
Well, now that I've gotten that little aside out of the way, here's what got that expression *back* in my head recently. The National Day of Prayer Task Force car, that is to be driven in an upcoming Nascar race.

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Amazing how one picture can sum up so succinctly what troubles me about my country these day.

It's hard to believe it's time again for the National Day of Prayer, which will fall on May 4 this year. But, while I was checking out the Faith and Values section of the Columbus Dispatch yesterday, there it was.
Many people in central Ohio and the rest of the country will pause to observe the National Day of Prayer on Thursday.

Ohio's event will take place 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m. at the Statehouse. A Bible-reading marathon will again be held at the Franklin County Courthouse, 373 S. High St., beginning at 3 p.m. Sunday and ending at 10 a.m. Thursday.
There is something disturbingly in-your-face about a Bible-reading marathon at a municipal building.

Of course, I am well aware that expressing any such concern about that blurring of the line between church and state is likely to get one attacked for being anti-religion, as we saw in some attack ads during the 2004 election:
In Franklin County, the battleground county in the battleground state, incumbent Democratic Commissioner Mary Jo Kilroy was attacked for failing to support a resolution to create a national day of prayer.

"Public prayer would be outlawed if liberal Mary Jo Kilroy was in charge," said a campaign mailing from Sen. David Goodman, her unsuccessful opponent. Goodman, a Columbus Republican, is Jewish.
Of course, what I find ironic is that fact that I oppose any state "blessing" of one faith tradition over another *because* of my Christian values, not in spite of them. It's all about that "do unto others the way you would have them do unto you" thing. Why should that be hard to understand? And I'm hardly alone...

Many people already know this, but for anyone who doesn't--or just for people who might appreciate the reminder in case they are thinking of writing a letter to the editor on this topic, Francis Bellamy, the Baptist Minister who first wrote the Pledge, chose his words very carefully, and chose *not* to include any reference to religion.
In 1954, Congress after a campaign by the Knights of Columbus, added the words, 'under God,' to the Pledge. The Pledge was now both a patriotic oath and a public prayer.

Bellamy's granddaughter said he also would have resented this second change. He had been pressured into leaving his church in 1891 because of his socialist sermons. In his retirement in Florida, he stopped attending church because he disliked the racial bigotry he found there.
Another Reverend weighs in...

Barry Lynn objects to National Day of Prayer
The executive director of Americans United for Separation of Church and State says Congress never should have established the event, which is observed each year on the first Thursday in May.

Lynn says the National Day of Prayer has become a vehicle for Christian conservatives to promote their social agenda, including opposition to abortion and gay marriage. He notes that it's chaired by Shirley Dobson, wife of Focus on the Family's Doctor James Dobson.

Mrs. Dobson says she would like people "to be praying about the institution of marriage, how God designed it." She also says she hopes Americans will repent and honor God.
Kinda proving his point, isn't she? You can read more of what Rev. Barry Lynn has to say about the National Day of Prayer here.

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Friday, April 28, 2006

Flat Subodh

Just wanted to remind you all that Demetrius created a Flat Subodh in time for the last weekend before the Ohio primary election. I hope anyone who is interested in the Subodh Chandra campaign for Ohio Attorney General will help spread the word.

Chandra's most recent endorsement is from Columbus Mayor Mike Coleman:

"Subodh's experience leading the Cleveland Law Department and his grasp of the issues that confront Ohio's next attorney general make him the best choice for Democratic voters in Tuesday's Primary Election," Mayor Coleman said. "Executive experience matters, and will be important to effectively run the People's Law Firm for all Ohioans."

Chandra said that "it is particularly gratifying to have Mayor Coleman's endorsement because he is a chief executive in the nation's 15th largest city who knows how to get things done including effective crime fighting. He was also one of the best regarded assistant attorneys general and knows what it takes to properly serve the attorney general's true clients - the people of Ohio."
Follow up to yesterday's post about "When Democrats campaign like Republicans", I've got a diary posted at My Left Wing, Daily Kos and Booman Tribune. The diary is titled, "OH bloggers teach gay-bashing Dem a valuable lesson." Kindly recommend, if you feel so inclined.

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''Stop him before he kills (the Democrats' chances) again."

The reaction to John Kerry's announcement that he may run again in 2008 has been underwhelming (at least here). In today's Boston Globe, columnist Ellen Goodman puts into words what I think many of us are feeling about Kerry's recent announcement.

Don't run, John Kerry

By Ellen Goodman | April 28, 2006

I HAVE LONG believed that any columnist who writes about a presidential election more than two years before Election Day should have her fingers peeled from her keyboard and be taken off to a rehab clinic for political junkies. The only reason I risk that fate now is to soothe an escalating series of anxiety attacks that range from "Uh-oh" to "Oh, no" to a shrieking "YIPES!"

The signs that John Kerry is going to run for president in 2008 are rising faster than the pollen count. There was the requisite New York Times op-ed -- How many days late? How many dollars short? -- on getting out of Iraq. There was the Globe op-ed that preceded the speech supporting war dissenters at Faneuil Hall to an audience of groupies yelling "Run" and "2008." There was Ted Kennedy's remark, "If he runs, I'm supporting him."

And then there was his op-ed in The Manchester Union-Leader defending New Hampshire's place as first-in-the-nation primary. A true profile in courage.

All of this leads me to blurt out: "Stop him before he kills (the Democrats' chances) again."

Yup, that about sums it up for me. We didn't end up with the candidate we wanted --Howard Dean -- we nominated a candidate based on the abstract concept of "electability." Says Goodman: "It wasn't a presidential primary, it was a presidential casting call."

There were a lot of things that annoyed me about the Kerry campaign. On March 25, 2004 Howard officially threw his support behind Kerry and the live webchat with Howard that day took place at the Kerry website. Bad move. It should have been John Kerry at DFA chatting with us. It was not an auspicious start to a campaign that fumbled so badly on the road to Election Day 2004.

Kerry's major flaw, in my opinion, is he's too cautious. Ask a question and the response you'll get leaves you wondering just exactly where he stands. Kerry couldn't even articulate a clear critique of the war in Iraq, which Bush used successfully to attack not only Kerry's credibility but also his character, tagging him a "flip-flopper." Kerry, who didn't want the campaign to descend into personal attacks, wouldn't hit back.

According to Goodman, "He ran a cautious campaign against a reckless commander in chief. And while caution is not a moral failing, Kerry's gut seems to have a surgical bypass through his cranium."

How bad was it? As Goodman observes, "In the end, a majority of likely voters thought we were on the wrong track and voted for the conductor anyway. In the end, the president who lied to us about war and weapons of mass destruction looked like the straight talker. That's how bad it was."

Once was enough. Sit 2008 out John.

NB: Julia Thorne, an author and the former wife of U.S. Sen. John Kerry, died of cancer yesterday at a friend's home in Concord. She was 61. (Boston Globe)

Alternate link to comment.

Howard Dean on the Al Franken Show

Howard Dean will be a guest on the Al Franken Show today. Also on Hardball. Anyone who has additional details, please post them in the comments, as I am leaving for work shortly and do not have time to do a longer post.

This is the last weekend before the Ohio primary. Demetrius has made a "Flat Subodh" which can be printed out and assembled a la "Flat Howard".

Finally, on a sad note, I have just heard from Oscar (aka Oscar in Louisville) that his brother-in-law has passed away. Please keep the whole family in your thoughts/prayers.

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Thursday, April 27, 2006

OMG! Ponies!!

In honor of Slashdot's April Fool's day theme and our tradition of cuteness for late night open threads.

Also, though I haven't quite figured it out yet, there is some sort of internet-ism about somebody getting a pony when Bush's poll number go down. Or maybe we all get ponies--like I said, I'm a little fuzzy on the details. But Booman suggests that tomorrow could be Fitzmas, so that should be good for a pair of ponies, don't you think?

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All About Petroleum - by Veep Daddy

From BFA:
rdorgan wrote on April 27, 2006 08:12 AM:

It's all about oil and gas (including the Iraq war).

(sorry... I only came up with the first stanza so far)

All About Petroleum - by Veep Daddy
(sing to the tune of All About The Benjamins)

It's all about petroleum.
It's all about petroleum! Yeah!

Now... What y'all wanna do?
Wanna be drillers? Big spillers?
Shillers - Who be lobbyin' the heck out of Hill-ers
On a loan from my gig at Halliburton
Goin' to land big contracts I'm certain
They're payin' the greens fees and for all the meals
Spaghetti, fettucini, and veal
Dividing up the Iraqi oil fields
No inheritance tax for when I'm writing my will
Of my energy task force Democrats are wary
But they'll never get to see the files that I bury
Regulations to zero. Climate scientists not heard
Environmentalists look at me flip you the bird
Down wit' the oil lobby on their side we will hunker
V8 de-fib' in my underground bunker
It's all about petroleum! What?
Gotta get some mo' no bid contracts
Gonna drill Iran when we're done with Iraq
Tankers flyin' Skulls and Bones just like a pirate
Go f*** yourself and your gas sippin' hybrid!
It's all about petroleum.
It's all about petroleum! Yeah!

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When Democrats campaign like Republicans

As I was checking the blogs during the day yesterday on my breaks at work (reminder--I could still use some new contributers for this blog), I came upon an entry about an Ohio candidate who sent out a campaign mailer including this wording...

"Mike Foley was asked [in an endorsement interview for the Sun Newspapers] if he was 'For Gay Marriage?' Mike said 'Yes' he supports gay marriage. UNLIKE MIKE this concerns me since I DO NOT want this to become a state law. I feel a Marriage is between a MAN and a WOMAN. That is the WAY I WILL VOTE in Columbus! In FACT Mike Foley has been ENDORSED by the STONEWALL DEMOCRATS, who are a GAY/LESBIAN political action committee. His endorsement is largely because of His Support of Gay Marriage."
There was a call to action on Buckeye State Blog.

The Cleveland Plain Dealer blog, Openers, sums of what happened from there. Bill Ritter, the candidate who put out the mailer, lost the endorsement of the UAW. Read the rest here.

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Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Grossly incompetent Secretary of State seeks promotion

Crossposted at My Left Wing, Booman Tribune and Daily Kos

Ken Blackwell, ideologically, is about the last person I would want to see in a high level government position. Ethically, in his oversight of the 2004 election and in his response (or lack thereof) to complaints about voter disenfranchisement, he gets low marks as well. But now in addition to these known shortcomings, we have a growing body of evidence pointing to Blackwell's gross incompetence. He has *for the second time* "accidentally" released many Ohioans' Social Security numbers. Wow. I'd never have the chutzpah to ask for a promotion with that kind of track record, but Ken Blackwell, the Ohio Secretary of State who is running for governor, is doing just that.

Millions of Social Security numbers are now in the hands of people who aren't supposed to have them.

It's a big mistake leading straight back to one of the men running for Ohio Governor. The private records were mistakenly released by the Secretary of State's office.

Voter lists are crucial to political parties. They give campaign workers an efficient way to target potential supporters. The lists usually consist of the names of registered voters, their addresses, their party affiliation, and whether that person voted in the last election.

Social security numbers aren't supposed to be revealed.

But they have been because of a mistake by Secretary of State Ken Blackwell's campaign.
Read the whole story here.

More Blackwell fun...

Ken Blackwell Incites Christian Voters on Campaign Trail, Secular Americans Called 'Nazis'
Slots opponent Blackwell owns stock in manufacturer
Pastor defends sending pro-Blackwell e-mail
PBS-NOW Sunday TV: Ohio Churches & IRS: Special Replay

In other Ohio news, Ted Strickland, the Democrat who will most likely be facing off against Blackwell in November just nabbed an NRA endorsement. And Ken Blackwell didn't.

Here's a writeup of Subodh Chandra's recent appearance at a local candidate forum.

Hire Subodh Chandra as the People's Lawyer

Finally, a Democratic candidate running in a congressional primary sends out a mailer asking voters to support him over his opponent who "has been ENDORSED by the STONEWALL DEMOCRATS, who are a GAY/LESBIAN political action committee".

The blogs responded. People called his endorsers. The UAW pulled their endorsement of the guy.

Sometimes I just love the "internets".

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"Break bread somewhere else"...the politics of eminent domain.

Crossposted at DailyKos.

Last week I posted a diary about some eminent domain proceedings going on here.
City begins eminent domain proceedings, so they can build condos downtown.


Lakeland's Downtown Community Redevelopment Agency has moved closer to taking private property for a plan that eventually could put 400 townhouses and condominiums on blighted land.

On behalf of the CRA, Lakeland lawyer Mark Miller on Thursday filed to begin the eminent domain process in circuit court in Bartow. The move marks the beginning of legal steps against five property owners who haven't negotiated a deal with the CRA to sell their properties.
This process is affecting nearly all of the downtown area in one way or the other. Once you start getting rid of all signs of the poor and needy, it sort of snowballs. The developers and the city planners find things work better that way. This editorial from the local paper does a good job of showing this exploitation of the homeless.

Break Bread Somewhere Else

Break Bread Somewhere Else

Give them this day their daily bread -- just somewhere other than behind the Greyhound Bus Station just north of Main Street in Lakeland. Until just recently, All Saints' Episcopal Church members had been been providing food for both body and soul on Tuesday behind the Greyhound station on Massachusetts Avenue.

..."Someone complained to City Hall. A code-enforcement officer paid a visit to the Greyhound station about a month ago. Because food was being offered at the gatherings, the meeting was moved to the courtyard of the Talbot House, which provides food and shelter for the homeless.

"For the Greyhound site to comply with city code, the bus station would need zoning for a "transient lodge or social service facility," said Tim McCausland, city attorney.

Also feeling the sting of Code Enforcement Office was a Sunday morning "sidewalk ministry," sponsored by the church. About four dozen people had been showing up for the Sunday ministry, held on the Lemon Street Promenade next to the church. That, too, was another food issue: Coffee and doughnuts were available.
Some parishioners think this enforcement about the serving of food outdoors downtown is because of the planned redevelopment of a nearby neighborhood, adjacent to the bus station.

"They just want to develop that area, and they don't want any street people there," Charlie Ware, 82, told The Ledger. "They're trying to attract a developer to build condominiums, and they don't want a potential developer to see the wrong image."
The editorial points out the hypocrisy of this because several downtown businesses are serving food outside now with the indoor smoking ban in effect. Many groups have events where food is served outside. A couple of the commissioners quoted at least had the decency to be concerned about it....that is more compassion than I have seen out of this bunch in several years.

The original article on this was in the paper on Saturday, and it amazed me that many neighbors and people I talked to this week were upset over it. People are noticing that our city and county leaders are devoted to the needs of developers and not so much to the needs of the needy.

Church Giveth, but City Taketh Away

LAKELAND -- Praise the Lord, but hold the doughnuts.

The city that prides itself on compassion toward the less fortunate has forbidden members of All Saints' Episcopal Church from giving sandwiches to homeless people.
The church's Tuesday morning feeding behind the Greyhound Bus Station on Massachusetts Avenue has been forced to move to the Talbot House, a downtown homeless shelter.

The city also asked church leaders to move the church's Sidewalk Sunday School, held at 9 a.m. every Sunday on the Lemon Street Promenade across from All Saints. The church has been told to move the service to the Talbot House.

The reason: The Sunday morning sidewalk service comes with coffee and doughnuts.
One of the city planners is quoted saying that the gathering is ok, but not the doughnuts and coffee. Maybe in the back of this planner's mind is the fact that coffee and doughnuts draws hungry people.

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Smack Down Your Vote! Podcast with Howard

Howard shares his views on issues critical to voters under 30 in two new podcasts from Smackdown Your Vote!

The two-part interview focuses on issues outlined in Smackdown Your Vote!'s 18-30 Voter Issues Paper (VIP), which covers issues important to young Americans of voting age -- such as the economy, education, health care, national security/Iraq and motivation/vision. The VIP is based on research conducted by top, national polls and other sources, including the Center for Information and Research on Civic Learning and Engagement (CIRCLE), the Congressional Budget Office and Harvard University's Institute of Politics.

WWE Superstar and Political Correspondent Chris Nowinski conducted the interviews. Part I is available today. Part 2 will be issued on May 1. Nowinski graduated from Harvard cum laude in 2000 with a B.A. in Sociology. (Yeah for sociology!--Ed.)

Smackdown Your Vote! is a non-partisan approach to getting young people involved in the political process and registered to vote. Smackdown Your Vote! undertakes voter registration at WWE live events, visits to high schools and colleges, and provides materials and resources to encourage active participation in their democracy.

I've watched Part I; the interview is a little clunky but Howard hits some good points about healthcare and education for the under 30 voter. Also you have to sit through some footage of Chris Nowinski in the wrestling ring before the interview starts and there's a nice exterior shot of the DNC headquarters building.

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Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Al Gore: An Inconvenient Truth

Hat tip to sean mykael at My Left Wing

Coming to a Theater Near You...

Humanity is sitting on a time bomb. If the vast majority of the world's scientists are right, we have just ten years to avert a major catastrophe that could send our entire planet's climate system into a tail-spin of epic destruction involving extreme weather, floods, droughts, epidemics, and killer heat waves beyond anything we have ever experienced - a catastrophe of our own making...

With wit, smarts and hope, AN INCONVENIENT TRUTH ultimately brings home Gore's persuasive argument that we can no longer afford to view global warming as a political issue - rather, it is the biggest moral challenge facing our global civilization.

Click for more from the diary or visit

Draft Al Gore for President 2008

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With Gratitude from Grateful Friends and Deaniacs Everywhere

Happy Birthday, Jessica!

It's difficult to talk about what jjem! does, because she does so much! MVIMV, DeanFest, Christmas for Blog Children, running for office. She is nearly the perfect specimen of a HEP.

Please use this thread to thank her.

I personally thank her for carrying my granddaughters' pictures as spirit marchers in the 2004 March for Women.

Update from Renee... Thankful sent the following post for Jessica's birthday, so I'm adding it to what puddle has posted:

Today is the day! The day to take a moment and let Jessica know just how special she is. I was first awestruck by this dynamic woman when she and the MViMV team persisted with dogged determination and brought DeanFest 1 to fruition. With that event behind her, this mom of two young children continued to put the Energizer Bunny to shame by running for office! And like the bunny, one could go on and on and on. Jessica, for all you do, for alI you give, for the kindness and compassion you share... I admire you lots.

Happy Birthday girl!

Alt Comment Link

Robert Greenwald at DemocracyFest

Come to the 3rd Annual DemocracyFest, July 14th-16th in San Diego, and see Robert Greenwald advise why this administration's corruption does not disappear with "Tommy Boy." The Big Buy: Tom DeLay's Stolen Congress is a film that has staying power; it will be shown on Friday night at DemocracyFest, and Robert Greenwald will present it.

Tom DeLay may have scurried away in defeat, but Mark Birnbaum and Jim Schermbeck's film has not lost any of its impact. Tom DeLay is merely the poster boy for this administration's corruption and The Big Buy will drive this point home. Join us and hear Robert Greenwald speak to this film and his work with Brave New Films.

Monday, April 24, 2006

Meet an Ohio Blogger: Chris Baker of Ohio 2nd

Crossposted at My Left Wing, Booman Tribune, and Daily Kos

Eric Vessels of Plunderbund aired his second podcast today. (Here are part 1 and part 2 of the first podcast.) It included interviews with Ohio bloggers Chris Baker and Tim Russo (democracy guy) as well as an interview with congressional candidate Bob Shemansky. What follows here is my transcript of Eric's interview with Chris.

Eric:These segments are about other Ohio bloggers, giving them the opportunity to learn a little bit more about some of the blogs out there and some of the people that blog. So you blog as Editor at Ohio 2nd blog.
Yours is actually one of the first blogs that I read when I first got active in reading and then eventually I started Plunderbund, because I was really following the Hackett stuff. When did you start the blog?

Chris: I purchased the domain in April--this is very important for bragging rights--there's a couple of people all taking credit for the whole Hackett phenomenon.

Eric: Right

Chris: I have to officially state: it was April 16 was the date I bought the domain, and started blogging May 17, which was the first candidate's forum, and the first time Hackett spoke with the other candidate.

Eric: Right, cool. Very cool. And you were one of the ones that pretty much everybody followed for the Hackett stuff, and then, of course, lots of other people started blogging about it. What is your focus? You started the Ohio 2nd blog to focus obviously on that special election--and now is your focus just that congressional district?

Chris: The goal wasn't to focus on the special election-- I'll be honest, I got really really lucky that Paul Hackett came along at the exact same time as I started blogging on the district. Because otherwise I'd be kind of chugging along in anonymity as Mr. Nobody. It was a great coincidence that he was there at the time, and that really helped what little traffic I did get. But the concept wasn't really to blog on the 2nd special election. The idea basically came from frustration over the 2004 election--

Eric: Oh, wow--that's a familiar tune!

Chris: --and my feeling that everybody was focussing on the strongest link in the chain, which was George Bush, and the tactics were all wrong. We were letting the house, which to me is the most powerful branch of government...Congress is the most powerful branch and the House as an entity has the most control over what really happens with the federal government.

Eric: Right.

Chris: And so you've got this incredibly powerful institution that no one ever really pays attention to, because everyone's complaining about George Bush. Meanwhile, everyone in there has to run for re-election every two years, they're incredibly unpopular,

Eric: Yes.

Chris: --they're incredibly *vulnerable*, and yet they win by overwhelming majorities time and time again. Why? Because they're ignored. And so my rule is, I don't think about Bush, I don't talk about Bush, I don't worry about Bush. I don't care about John Kerry, I don't give a darn who runs for president--I completely ignore that race and focus on little Jean Schmidt and Bob McEwen and the cast of characters that are the local 2nd Congressional District.

And I bring the same kind of heat--we've got thousands of people hammering George Bush and we've got this wonderful echo chamber of, pointlessness, in my opinion--

Eric: Sure.

Chris: So, make it personal to Jean Schmidt--make it personal to her. And the thing about me is, I walk into a room for an event in the 2nd district, and Jean Schmidt's right there. There's no blogger that's going to walk into a room with George Bush. I mean, I get the icy stares right from her. I post, and I get responses from her campaign within 15 minutes.

Eric: Wow.

Chris: So, that kind of direct relationship with what's going on on the ground with the local parties and the local people gives it a lot more sense of reality than what you would get from covering national presidential races.

Eric: Sure. And I think we've seen a few other regional- and congressional district-only blogs pop up, and if we hold true to your model, that's going to be a very powerful thing moving forward.

Chris: Right. I'm seeing a lot of that happening. The rules are very vague, there are some blogs cropping up and you can't figure out quite what their agenda is--there's no real written game plan. So, it's interesting to see how it kind of gels.

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Any Democrat will do?

This is Renee, doing a quick post before work. I'm putting mprov's post from the overnight here on the front page so that it can be discussed.

i posted this at bfa. wondering what thoughts here are??? sign says: "any democrat will do."

re: the thread photo.

1. if a conservative is thinking this: ya!!!

2. if a fence setter(the great american middle of the road) is thinking this: ya!!!!

3. if a dem/liberal/progressive is thinking this: much more complicated.

i think, and i hope most here will agree, that the point is less "our side" winning and more "doing what is right." it seems that there was a fictional past in america where both sides at least tried to do the right thing while operating from their own perspective/ideology.

this is the america that i believe in. one that first and foremost is honest in its attempt to realize the "truths" that we hold dear. freedom, liberty and the persuit of happiness. good words. better ideas. near perfect real world result.

do we, as progressives, settle for someone with a "D" after their name on the ballot? i hope not. do we, as progressives, promote the ideals in which we believe? the answer has to be yes. do we, as progressives, promote the candidates with the ideals in which we believe? the answer has to be yes.

this is not about "tent" size. this is about working to create the kind of world that we would like to live in with the belief that "our" version/vision of the world would really be better for all of our fellow citizens. isn't this what the whole thing/fight is about: their version, our version, someone else's version?

under our current situation, i think the sign is promising, while remaining incomplete. you decide for yourself what's right.

Also, Catreona asked about this Bradblog post.
There's nowhere to comment, which is annoying. I wanted to get him to clarify something. It sounds like he doesn't approve of HAVA Now, whatever its other pros and cons, HAVA is supposed to help disabled folks vote. Does this Brad guy have a problem with that? He does link to Black Box Voting, a marvelous project. But, he seems rather anti-Howard so, overall, I didn't like the blog entry.

I haven't read the post myself, so I can't speak to whether it is anti-Howard, but I'm wondering if someone else can explain why many people are against HAVA. To the best of my memory, it had to do with the fact that seems to mandate electronic voting, with all the problems that involves.

Before a leave, a few things I'd like to put front and center:
Why the Ohio Attorney General race matters: honest elections
Ohio Attorney General Candidate Needs Your Support
Panel discussion on hate crimes in Columbus

Have a great day, everyone.

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MViMV Guest Blog tonight

Please join us tonight on the My Vote is My Voice blog, from 8pm-9pm EDT. Tonight's interactive guest blogger will be Tara Liloia, Technology Director for Democracy For America, who will be discussing "Tips on e-mail list management".

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Donna and Thankful go to Iowa

Home again home again safe and sound. Yesterday was one of the best days in my series of great days since I first came to know the folks at DFA. As Puddle and Phil have already posted, Thankful and I were out in Iowa where I finally had a chance to meet my good friend Phil, which is how I have thought of him for years, despite the fact we never had met face to face.

What a day Phil had planned! We lunched, and then we met the 'blog cows.' Can you believe it, my namesake is shy! We met Phil's wonderful dad who was very impressed that Phil had "two girls from Chicago" in tow. We then helped clean up some tornado damaged property in what Phil called a "DeanCorp Project."

I am so grateful to Phil for showing us a little of his life and well, for being Phil. Do you know what my new definition of trust is? It's getting into a car with a guy you've never met and going down unmarked gravel roads knowing he has a chainsaw in the trunk.

There are so many bad massacre movies out there that tell you unfamiliar situations are scary and bad. But let me tell you folks, it's not true, (just in case you had any doubts, lol).

Chainsaws in trunks are used to clear trees that have been damaged by horrible tornadoes. And neighbors are people who show up unannounced to get the job done. And the best example of a good friend and neighbor is our own Phil*from*Iowa.

donna in evanston | 04.23.06 - 4:33 pm

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Just some post-Easter reflections I've found, for anyone who is interested.

From The God Who Walks With Us, a sermon at Christ Church Cathedral

In The Magnificent Defeat, Frederick Buechner suggests that Emmaus is "the place we go to in order to escape - a bar, a movie (and, if I may add - a basketball game, a concert, a vacation) . . . it may be buying a new suit or a new car or smoking more cigarettes that you really want . . . Emmaus is whatever we do or wherever we go to make ourselves forget that the world holds nothing sacred: that even the wisest and bravest and loveliest decay and die . . ."

Their Eyes Were Opened

Professor and author Marcus Borg recalls the time he was part of a tour group visiting the Holy Land, and their next stop was Emmaus. When the bus arrived at the church which marked the traditional site, the church was locked. It wasn't supposed to be, but apparently the caretaker had been delayed or something.

In the midst of their disappointment the guide said: "Not to worry. There's another Emmaus."

In fact, says Borg, there are four Emmauses. Which is to say, there are four different sites each claiming to be the Emmaus of scripture.

Couple that knowledge with the realization that there is no ancient record of any village named Emmaus, and you come to the conclusion (says Borg) that "Emmaus is nowhere because Emmaus is everywhere."

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