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Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Midwest Mesopotamia: Rants on Knapp/IDOT corruption

Excerpted from this post at Midwest Mesopotamia

A letter to the editor in the DMR points out the rather conspicuous absence of GOP exploitation of the IDOT/Knapp scandal. Drew Miller and State 29 both take notice. Does someone on the other side of the aisle has a hand in the cookie jar as well? Mad speculation, but what else can explain it? Surely the RPI and the Republican’s legislative leadership aren’t so dense as to miss an opportunity to show that corruption is a bi-partisan sport.

InMuscatine: Yet Another Pro-Pervert Editorial from the Register

Excerpted from this post at InMuscatine

I was wrong. I had thought the Supreme Court deciding the issue would be enough for the Register to give up on defending perverts. Guess not :

"It is becoming increasingly apparent that the residency restriction for convicted sex offenders has spun out of control. Not to Iowa legislative leaders, however. They apparently believe an ineffective law that makes them look tough on crime is preferable to one that actually protects children."

Of course, the Register has yet to explain how moving perverts miles away from prospective victims WON'T protect the victim. Further, the Register hasn't explained how their editorial position fulfills their role as watchdogs of government. They are on a crusade to protect those who would do harm, and I can't figure out how that is speaking truth to power.


Hawkeye Republican: Open Letter on the Coralville Rainforest

Excerpted from this post at Hawkeye Republican


Dear Mayor Fausett,

Look, let me first say that it was probably a little rash of me to imply that your position as mayor of Coralville is stupid. Coralville is a great town, full of a mall, lots of restaurants on one's way into or out of Iowa City and hopefully, never, ever, ever a rainforest.

All Iowans can admit that the initial idea behind this "rainforest" was great. Oh you clever rascals, naming your federal dollar thirsty behemoth "Iowa Child." We love children in Iowa. Then there was the whole rainforest concept itself. Rain in Iowa...with forest, instead of prairie...great. Ever since all of those Bridges of Madison County and Field of Dreams tourists dried up, we've really been looking for a way to saddle up our state with a pork project to open the flood gates of tourists.

But, Mayor Fausett, there is a reason that no respectable city--Cedar Rapids, Des Moines and Iowa City included--with the exception of your dear strip of a town wanted the rainforest.


Former Governor Robert Ray's most recent letter demanding support and the fulfillment of certain criteria is a wake-up call. Okay, more like multiple alarms sounding at once over the period of hours. Nonetheless, you can smell the sweet aroma of coffee wafting upstairs along with, what's that--bacon. It's time to carve up this pig and get out the old frying pan.

And that is all, Mayor Fausett, I just ask you to kill the pork.

A Concerned Citizen Who Occasionally Enjoys Bacon and Coffee Iowa Caucus Changes

Excerpted from this post at

Chris is a lot happier about the proposed changes to the 2008 primary season than I am. The plan, which is to put a western caucus and a southern caucus between Iowa and New Hampshire, wouldn't hurt Iowa too much. It would split early ad dollars and so on between four states instead of two, but the primary focus would still be on Iowa.

My concern has nothing to do with Iowa. My concern is that this proposal amplifies
the problems of the 2004 primaries.

In 2004, there were eight days between Iowa and New Hampshire. That's really only seven days of news. Those seven days were split about evenly between "Kerry rocks!" coverage and "Dean is crazy!" scream reruns. Virtually nothing was said about John Edwards, whose second place finish was just as impressive as Kerry's first place.
Kerry's support in New Hampshire skyrocketed basically overnight, and held steady throughout that week. Edwards' support increased somewhat, but he only received 12% of the primary vote, to Kerry's 39%. Do you think those numbers would have been the same, given two or three weeks of coverage? I don't.

Seven days of rah rah coverage later, Kerry claimed five out of seven contests all around the nation. Edwards won the traditionally third South Carolina, but that didn't matter much with six other states holding their races too.

This succession of wins virtually guaranteed Kerry the nomination. All of this happened with absolutely no critical coverage of him. Since he was a come-from-behind candidate, there was precious little critical coverage of him before Iowa, either.
This is not how primaries should be run. We need a chance to take a serious look at any candidate who emerges as a likely nominee.


An ideal primary calendar would be backloaded - start out with one contest every couple of weeks, and gradually build to the point of doing 20 or so on the last day (in late April or early May) - a super duper Tuesday, if you will. That schedule would allow a consensus to build if there truly is an informed one, and if not would still decide a winner in time for serious uncontested "primary" fundraising.
The irony of this whole exercise is that those arguing to diminish the influence of Iowa and New Hampshire are in fact (probably) greatly increasing the importance of Iowa. That's too bad, since I don't think that we ought to be solely in charge of picking the candidate. We generally do a pretty good job, but the rest of the nation ought to have a say, too.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Political Forecast: Nussle should give back tainted and corrupt cash

Excerpted from this post at Political Forecast

The Iowa Democratic Party issued a good demand today to Congressman Jim Nussle today:

“The Iowa Democratic Party calls on Congressman Jim Nussle today to return a $1,000 donation from the Friends of Duke Cunningham congressional campaign committee. Congressman Randall “Duke” Cunningham resigned yesterday after pleading guilty to charges of bribery and tax evasion.

How long will it take for Iowa’s presumptive Republican candidate to finally face the facts and become an ethical man, unlike the rest of his corrupt GOP pals in Washington?

Does Iowa need a governor who’s taking money from Congressmen pleading guilty to or under indictment for federal offesnses? Of course not.

Mike Schramm
Andy Szal

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