Keane observations about life, politics and sports.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Need Another Example Why Some Republican Senators Need to Face Primary Challenge?

Some say it is unproductive to challenge incumbent GOP Senators. I could agree if a senator got the great majority of votes right, but differed from my point of view on one small matter or another. I get the concept of building a large tent party. However, a minimum standard for admission to the tent has to exist. I would hope we can agree that our party should be opposed to further expansion of the federal government. With that in mind how does reconcile the fact that 15 Republican senators voted for a massive federal power grab. I'm referring to Senate bill 510 - FDA Food Safety Modernization Act.
Spanning some 150 pages, the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act would authorize the FDA to dictate how farmers grow fruits and vegetables, including rules governing soil, water, hygiene, packing, temperatures, and even what animals may roam which fields and when. It would also increase inspections of food “facilities” and tax them to do so. And, fulfilling the dream of a long line of agency officials, the bill grants the FDA unilateral authority to order recalls.

In addition to the inevitable costs to consumers, expanding the agency’s regulatory reach would require additional spending of $1.4 billion between 2011 and 2015, according to the Congressional Budget Office.[1] The costs to the private sector have not been calculated but would likely reach into the hundreds of millions of dollars annually. (Ed. I'm quite certain that these estimates like all estimates of damage caused by legislation is vastly under what the eventual costs will end up being)
While there have been a couple of very high profile cases of food borne illness in the last year or so, the truth is the actual number of cases has decreased markedly over the last decade.

This (like a lot of nanny state BS) brings to mind a quote from the late H.L. Menken:
"The urge to save humanity is almost always a false front for the urge to rule."

Oh, you want to know which 15 Republicans think now is the time for a massive expansion of the federal government? Here is a list of the sorry wretches:

Alexander (R-TN)
Brown (R-MA)
Burr (R-NC)
Collins (R-ME)
Enzi (R-WY)
Grassley (R-IA)
Gregg (R-NH) *
Johanns (R-NE)
Kirk (R-IL)
LeMieux (R-FL)
Lugar (R-IN)
Murkowski (R-AK)
Snowe (R-ME)
Vitter (R-LA)
Voinovich (R-OH) *

Two are retiring in a month or so, the rest need to be retired when their current term expires.


Want another reason? From the
Republican Sens. Bob Bennett (UT), Thad Cochran (MS), Dick Lugar (IN), Susan Collins (ME), Jim Inhofe (OK), Lisa Murkowski (AK), Richard Shelby (AL), and George Voinovich (OH) all just voted against an amendment in the Senate that would have banned Congressional earmarks. This is terrible public policy for their states, for their constituents, and for our country.

Harvard research shows that states that experience an increase in earmark spending suffer from decreases in corporate capital expenditures and employment. Earmarking also robs money from local government transportation priorities to pay for Senator’s vanity projects.
You'll notice several names on both list of mistaken votes.

Labels: ,

Monday, November 29, 2010

Memo to Establishment Republicans

Here is some free advise to former senator John Danforth and other establishment Republicans: You are not helping your friends when you say they shouldn't face a primary challenge because they've been in DC for decades. Being in DC for decades is a major reason to kick a politician to the curb. What precipitates this post is a New York Times article praising Sen. Dick Lugar (R-IN). Of course, if the NYT praises a Republican it must mean he is taking positions at odds with other Republicans. In the article, we get this statement that is very revealing about the political mindset:
“If Dick Lugar,” said John C. Danforth, a former Republican senator from Missouri, “having served five terms in the U.S. Senate and being the most respected person in the Senate and the leading authority on foreign policy, is seriously challenged by anybody in the Republican Party, we have gone so far overboard that we are beyond redemption.”
Funny thing is, before reading this I would have laughed at the idea of Lugar facing a challenge. Now, I expect he will not only face a challenge, but the challenger will be raking in donations. While the Tea Party movement is thought to be mainly against the excessive government spending, which it is, it also has grown to be against the entitlement mindset of career politicians. For decades people have complained about not having a choice in elections. Between gerrymandered congressional districts, establishment backed candidates getting all the funding, and primaries being decided before your state gets to weigh in, people had valid complaints, but no recourse. The 2010 elections showed the electorate they can have a choice if they demand a choice. Prior to seeing Sen. Bob Bennett lose in Utah, I assumed that absent a major scandal no incumbent senator could be beaten in a primary. Shortly thereafter, Alaska Republican voters decided Sen. Lisa Murkowski didn't deserve their nomination. All incumbents need to understand they are subject to performance review and dismissal if warranted.

REMINDER: Don't give one thin dime to the national Republican apparatus. Whether it is the RNC, NRSC, or NRCC the goal of all is the same - Incumbency protection. Public service in elected office should not be a career!

Labels: , ,

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Taking Crazy to a Whole New Level

I've met some crazy folks over the years. However, there's nothing to compare with this nutty racist broad in the Kansas City area. A teacher slapped her child in school because he was misbehaving. Worse than that, it was a white teacher who slapped her perfect child. I could cut and paste the evidence of her nuttiness, but that wouldn't do justice to the level of crazy she brings to the table. To get the full effect of her derangement you have to read her 40 page complaint and list of demands. She sent her manifesto to the school board and copies to dozens of other folks including the president, vice president, their wives some senators and various other officials.

Here is a link to some serious crazy talk.

Lastly, I assume and hope Curtis is a nice kid. I can only pray his nutty, racist mother has not warped his mind into thinking like she does.


Monday, November 8, 2010

Another Complaint About a Commercial

The Windows Phone has been running a TV commercial which mocks how wrapped up some people are in their current phone. A catch phrase in the commercial is someone else in the phone users life saying "Really?" out of exasperation. I buy it in some of the scenes. Something is wrong with a guy obsessing with his phone while his pretty wife is in lingerie awaiting attention. However, one scene has a guy using the phone at the urinal. I'm fine with that - multi-tasking is all the rage. However, the guy drop the phone into the urinal and bends over and picks it up. Another guy using a urinal says "Really?" as the other guy retrieves his phone. What, did he expect him to leave it there? Sure, it got wet. So what! Wipe it off. Those high end smart phones are not cheap. Might just be me, but that segment of the commercial is stupid

Which Party is Dumber - Republicans of Democrats?

Some days it seems the two major political parties are vying over which should be considered the dumber of the two.

The Democrats just got shellacked in the mid-term elections. A key strategy of the Republicans was to nationalize House races and make individual elections more about Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi than the local candidate. Ads ran in nearly every competitive district showing Pelosi saying "We had to pass the bill to find out what's in it." That quote spoke volumes about Democrat arrogance and helped Republicans gain control of the House. Well, that's not how Democrats see it.
Outgoing Speaker Nancy Pelosi's (D-Calif.) leadership had "nothing to do" with Democrats' losses in last week's election, the No. 3 House Democrat said Monday.

"It has everything to do with an environment that we found ourselves in that had nothing to do with Nancy Pelosi or the people that we had on the field," Clyburn said on MSNBC's "Morning Joe."

"We're very introspective about this, and we are having discussions as to how we should go forward," the South Carolina Democrat explained. "And I think that my party feels that this had nothing to do with Nancy Pelosi's leadership.
Okay, keep telling yourselves that it had nothing to do with Pelosi. Please keep her as the primary face of your party in congress.

The Republican party just finished an election cycle where they gained control of the House of Representatives and picked up several seats in the Senate. So, how do they respond? Some fools speaking for the establishment wing of the party have spent the past week trying to assign blame rather than passing out credit. The latest is a fool congressman from Alabama named Spencer Bachus (sounds like a cousin of Thurston Howell III) declared that Sarah Palin is to blame for the GOP not winning the Senate. Let me get this straight, Palin and the Tea Party movement generated enthusiasm for conservative candidates all over the country leading to gains in both houses and instead of saying thank you, he decides to blame her for not winning five more seats. I have one question for Rep. Bachus. Just what the heck did YOU do to help elect anyone besides yourself?

Labels: , , , ,

Can Portman Replace Voinovich Tomorrow, Please?

As he heads towards a long overdue retirement, Sen. George Voinovich is demonstrating once again why he will not be missed.
Sens. Tom Carper, D-Del., and George Voinovich, R-Ohio, are proposing a fuel tax increase to address two looming fiscal problems -- a burgeoning budget deficit and a shrinking highway trust fund.

In a letter sent Friday to the bipartisan National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform, Carper and Voinovich proposed a 25-cent-per-gallon increase in the fuel tax, to be gradually rolled out over the next three years. The two senators say the levy would raise $200 billion over five years.
All this does is show his ignorance of how the economy is impacted by taxes. Voinovich's idea would cripple the economy at a point it should be rebounding. It also show the career politicians completely failed to comprehend what last Tuesday's election results mean. They think the answer to all questions is more taxes. NO! The answer is cut the spending. Every item in the budget should be examined and if it doesn't meet requirement of both being necessary and being a federal responsibility they should cut it.

Labels: ,

Thursday, November 4, 2010

The Overlooked Lieutenant Governor Candidates

Leading up to the recent elections we focused on congressional candidates for senate and house seats and to a lesser extent candidates for governor. However, very little attention was given to the candidates for lieutenant governor. In Ohio I don't think anything was said during the election regarding Mary Taylor who will be sworn in as lieutenant governor in a couple months. Taylor is finishing a successful term as state auditor after serving in the Ohio House of Representatives. Unlike most politicians who tend to be lawyers, Taylor's background is as an accountant (CPA). Somewhat more attention was paid to Jennifer Carroll, the second seat on the GOP gubernatorial ticket in Florida. However, that is only because her son, Nolan Carroll is a rookie with the Miami Dolphins. Like Taylor, Carroll had a different path to politics. She enlisted in the Navy out of high school. She went on to serve 20 years retiring as a Lieutenant Commander.

Faces of the future of the Republican party?

Rest in Peace - Sparky Anderson

Hall of Fame baseball manager Sparky Anderson passed away today. Anderson lead the Reds and Tigers to the World Series five times winning three championships. He was respected by his teams as a player's manager who could be firm when necessary. He was also an optimist who would often (wrongly) declare in spring training that some young prospect (Howard Johnson, Matt Nokes, etc) was the next big superstar.

Rest in Peace.

Labels: , , ,

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Election Night Reactions to Results

6:00 PM Polls close in parts of Kentucky and Indiana. Initial returns very positive for Rand Paul. I expect this race to be called within an hour.

6:43 With less than 2% of returns CNN already projecting Republican wins in 3 House races. KY 5, IN 5 & IN 6. 215 more needed for control of the House.

7:00 FOX is projecting Dan Coats has won the Indiana U.S. Senate seat. One gain

7:01 FOX is projecting Rand Paul will be the next U.S. Senator from Kentucky. Hold.

7:08 Incumbents senators Jim DeMint (R) of South Carolina and Patrick "Leaky" Leahy (D) of Vermont both projected to win easily.

7:15 CNN now projecting 11 House winners for the GOP and 1 Dem.

7:30 Ohio polls close and immediately Rob Portman is projected the winner of the U.S. Senate seat currently held by George Voinovich. Guess my vote helped.

8:00 Jeopardy break over

8:01 Marco Rubio projected to win Florida's U.S. Senate seat. This is a man to watch in years to come.

8:02 Kelly Ayotte projected to win New Hampshire's U.S. Senate seat.

8:08 Connecticut and Delaware vote to continue Obama's failed policies by elected the dishonest Dick Blumenthal and the marxist Chris Coons to their open senate seats. Bad case of voter fail.

8:11 Current House projections 32 GOP & 8 Dem. I expect GOP to reach the 218 necessary to have a majority around 9:45 PM.

8:32 In Arkansas Republican John Boozman unseats Sen. Blanche Lincoln. GOP pick up.

8:33 House at 57 GOP and 18 DEM. Next hour will be very interesting.

9:23 Ohio governor's race looking ugly. However, as more precincts report the margin is tightening up.

9:41 Sadly CNN is projecting Barney Frank will win reelection again. Once again the voters in Massachusetts showed they are incapable of making a good decision. Disgusting!

9:54 In a night of ups and downs, there is some good news for our country. The next congress will not include the absolute most despicable member of the last congress. Alan Grayson lost his reelection bid.

10:03 CBS just projected the Republicans will get control of the House in the next congress. That will most likely lead to my congressman John Boehner serving as Speaker of the House.

10:05 Col. Alan West, USA(ret) of Florida will join the next congress. Another big improvement over the last congress.

10:11 Longtime incumbent Rep. Paul Kanjorski lost tonight. I like seeing any DEM incumbent lose, but particularly ones with hard to spell names.

10:26 Hickenlooper declared winner in Colorado governor race. This race is exhibit A in why vetting of candidates needs to happen prior to primaries. The losing Republican nominee should never have survived a thorough vetting process.

10:39 FOX is now projecting Ron Johnson is defeating Russ Feingold! No surprise, but good to see. One half of McCain/Feingold is gone.

10:40 Great news. Nikki Haley is now projected to win the South Carolina governor race. This contest got particularly ugly with nasty accusations of infidelity and other garbage. Glad to see she overcame the nonsense to win.

10:53 More good news: 20 year incumbent John Spratt and the awful Debbie Halverson are losing.

10:56 A commenter on twitter just made a great point that some of the tea parties biggest wins this year have been made coincidentally by women and people of diverse ethnic and racial background. Hmmmm, that tends to undermine the BS line from the DEM's/mainstream media that the tea party is racist. Nope. An understanding of economics and math and a desire to adhere to our nations Constitution is not a trait that belongs to any one race or gender.

11:04 As soon as the polls close California is called. Disgustingly, but not surprisingly, the idiots in California have rewarded incompetence. Sen Barbara Boxer was reelected to another six year term and Jerry Brown was returned to the governor's office. That state will continue to spend themselves towards insolvency with an expectation that they will be bailed out by the rest of the country. That must not happen! Irresponsible states being bailed out by monies confiscated from citizens of responsible states is morally reprehensible. We will be left to wonder if Chuck DeVore would have given Boxer a better challenge if he had won the primary.

11:40 Pennsylvania Senate seat is finally called for Pat Toomey!

11:50 John Boehner, the presumptive next Speaker of the House just gave a contrite and heartfelt speech. Keep him in your prayers as the attacks will only get more visceral.

11:52 Illinois congressman Phil Hare who infamously said who cares what is in the Constitution was rightfully kicked to the curb. Also Renee ELmers beat the violent and aggressive incumbent Beb Etheridge.

11:53 John Kasich has won the Ohio governor race over incumbent Ted Strickland. Let's hope his lead stays outside the margin of fraud.

12:28 Another victory for corrupt politicians and unions results in Sen Harry Reid returning to the senate. Sad news for our country. Reid remains the negative face of Obama policies.

12:35 Bed time. Night.


Election Predictions

Lots of election predictions out today. Here are links to a few:

We have the wildly optimistic from Kathleen Lopez of NRO. She sees Republicans picking up 80 seats in the House and 9 in the Senate including the California seat currently held by Maam Boxer.

We have very detailed predictions from Jim Geraghty. He predicts every House race and every contested Senate seat.

Winners and Losers is a collection of predictions from various experts at a NRO Symposium.

Don Surber toyed with the idea of doubling his months old prediction of 51 House and 5 Senate seat gains for Republicans. While noting some numbers that could lead to the double down, he stuck with his original prediction to avoid any chance of disappointment tonight. His 51 and 5 are the bare minimum gains I could see for the Republicans.

For laughs, here is a link to Meghan McCain's predictions. They are predictably nonsensical. She only predicts five races and my guess is she gets all five wrong. Particularly amusing is her idea that Gov. Charlie Crist will win the Florida senate seat. He'll be lucky to avoid third place after the silliness of the past week where he and Bill Clinton tried to push the Dem nominee to drop out of the race. This race will be called for Marco Rubio within minutes of the polls closing.

My own predictions: In Ohio, Rob Portman will win the senate seat easily. In the governor race Kasich will win, but won't be outside the margin of fraud/recount shenanigans. Strickland's ads have been effective both in painting Kasich as a Wall Street big wig and as being anti-gun rights. My congressman, John Boehner will win easily and will be the next Speaker of the House as the Republicans gain 60+ seats. I don't see the Republicans getting a majority in the Senate. It will be close, but I don't trust California voters doing the right thing and kicking Boxer to the curb. A side note to that prediction is the Democrats actually have a lot more Senate seats to defend in 2012. At least two senate races will go into a protracted recount process. There will be at least five long term incumbent congressmen who were perceived safe that will get beaten. Let's hope Barney Frank is one of them.

Tonight's drinking game? If watching MSNBC drink every time a host cries or says the word disaster. If watching FOX drink every time they say historic, unprecedented, or better than expected.

Labels: , , , , , , ,

Monday, November 1, 2010

Tomorrow's Election

Tomorrow's election and the impact of the Tea Party movement can be summed up in one simple thought:
More Government = Less Freedom
Less Government = More Freedom

Our problem of excessive government did not happen over night. No, it developed over decades. Every time something bad happens and people respond by saying "government ought to . . . . " it leads to a government response that grows government and reduces freedom. Government has legitimate roles to play. Government is a necessary evil to do collectively what we need but can not do individually. Interstate highways can't be built by individuals. National defense is not a personal responsibility. However, much of what our federal government has decided to do and fund are not federal responsibilities. Tomorrow is the first step to fixing the problem. Some of the people elected tomorrow will fail. They are human and human beings make mistakes. The concerns of the Tea Party movement are not getting different people elected, but rather about changing the culture of spending in congress. The Republicans will be the majority party in the House in the next congress and will have between 48 and 52 senate seats. If the Republicans don't fight all wasteful spending then a lot of them will face primary challenges in 2012.

Labels: ,

Congratulations to World Series Champion San Francisco Giants

Tonight the Giants beat the Texas Rangers 3 to 1 to win the fifth game of the World Series and close out the series 4 games to 1. Edgar Renteria hit a three run homer off Cliff Lee in the 7th inning for the deciding score. Oddly enough, 13 years ago, Renteria drove in the winning run in the 1997 World Series for the Marlins against the Cleveland Indians.

149 days until opening day. 105 days until pitchers and catchers report.


View My Stats