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Tuesday, October 10, 2006

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Jennifer

I enjoy your political commentary. I never know how to respond to it, though. I think it's because you seem to have hope and I just don't.

DT

A wise man will ask, "Will the truth ever come out?" A wiser man will answer, "It always does." I feel very strongly that this empty keg of a man will wake up very disappointed on November 8th.

scott

I enjoy your political commentary.

Well, jeez louise, that’s nice (and unexpected) to hear.

I never know how to respond to it, though.

As Smashing Pumpkins once sang (well, kinda whined, actually) no responses ever need be made. Although they’re (almost) always nice to get.

I think it's because you seem to have hope and I just don't.

Well, I reckon that’s just me. Glass half-full. :)

November, baby. Fifth time's the charm!

Karen E.

Well, the only real hope is outside of this world, which will always be a mess, but on the earthly, political level, I sometimes draw hope from recalling a scene in "All the President's Men" -- Woodward and Bernstein are working feverishly in the newsroom, and in the background on TV, we see Nixon being sworn in for his second term. NO ONE (other than Woodstein) has yet taken anything seriously ... but ... drip, drip, drip ... things keep trickling out, just a little at a time ... the truth will out, the truth will out. Eventually.

Jennifer

The worst part? He never excercised the options. Funny man. Funny, funny man.

"In March 2000, Allen held 60,000 options when Xybernaut shares closed at an all-time high of $23.75. That would have made the options worth $1.1 million, less commissions and fees, had Allen exercised them.

At that time, Allen could have paid $5.47 and $1.56 respectively for two groups of options, sold them and pocketed the difference. He was awarded another 50,000 options in October 2000.

Greg Walden, an attorney at Patton Boggs LLP in Washington who represents Allen, said the options with Xybernaut expired 90 days after Allen left the board in December 2000."

shannon

I think I've fallen into the cynical bin. I think that none of this is going to matter. Then again, maybe it's the confluence of all the little things that will finally bite the Republicans in the proverbial and literal ass.

DT

Tennessee, Missouri, Montana, Pennsylvania, and finally Ol'Virginny. That's 5 seats. That's it. Right there. Brings the balance to 50-49-1, and Jeffords is on our side. And if Tailgunner Joe, who last stood for something meaningful when Nixon was alive, can actually be taken down in CT, add one more real D to the caucus. Pipe dream? Maybe. But it's the best chance we've had in years and we just can't blow it. So maybe we won't. And remember...the Senate is the difficult house. We simply SHOULD take the U.S. House this year. Ours to lose (ours being the Dems, of course. Sorry) Think of it...winning the House, even-steven in the Senate...it can happen. Optimism...optimism...Who's with me?

Steve the LLamabutcher

DT---try keeping up on the story, Jeffords isn't running for reelection this year. And Rape Gurney Joe---no longer a Democrat, according to the Kossacks, mind you---is cruising to reelection. I guess going for the "pipe dream" joke would be too easy.

Scott---you forgot to mention Allen chews tobacco. Disgusting habit, if you ask me.

But what is the deal with the fascination with his middle name? As someone cursed with a ridiculous middle name ("Girard" for the record), I'm curious.

And in light of this, what to make of the Harry Reid story this week...?

Hope all is well and safe hop to the Mtns. this week, dude!

scott

Working backwards:

And in light of this, what to make of the Harry Reid story this week...?

I think it’s obvious the GOP is desperate. :)

Harry Reid made money on a land deal, and the Ethics Committee has said he’s done no wrong. Well, sweet Jesu, call out a independent prosecutor and give him a hundred million dollars to distract our attention from Iraq!

Note that this “story” was “broken” (and, yes, that's too many uses of the "quotes" cliché) by the same hack who wrote about Reid accepting free tickets to a boxing match.

In May 2006, John Solomon of the Associated Press erroneously reported that Reid had accepted free tickets valued at hundreds of dollars each for three boxing matches between 2003 and 2005 from the Nevada Athletic Commission, though it was later reported that Reid had in fact received "credentials" intended specifically for public officials, which, not being retail tickets, have no selling price.

At that time and afterwards, Reid, a former amateur middleweight boxer and boxing judge, supported legislation to create a federal boxing commission, which had the potential to dilute the state commission's authority. After receiving the tickets, Reid voted for the legislation, which was opposed by the state commission.

Get that? Reid, a boxer in his youth, was supporting legislation to weaken the NAC. The NAC gives him passes to some boxing events. Reid accepts the passes, goes to the fights, and then votes to weaken the NAC anyway—so much for quid pro quo. And then this hack writes a piece implying Reid did something wrong—even though by that point Reid had already voted against the folks who gave him the passes.

Oh, but that’s not all. Turns out it would actually have been illegal for Reid to pay for the passes. So he gets accused of breaking the law…because he didn’t break the law.

Remember, up is down. Black is white. Eastasia is our ally. We have always been at war with Eastasia.

What’s that say, good sir? Something about land deals? Oh! I know! You’re wondering about that fella Denny Hastert, Republican from the great state of Lincoln, the Speaker of the House and the guy who tries so hard (no pun intended) to protect the rights of powerful sexual predators to continue preying on young boys.

This must be what you’re thinking:

House Speaker J. Dennis Hastert pocketed almost $2 million from real estate deals adjacent to his Plano home in booming Kendall County, one of the fastest growing areas in the nation.

The transactions prompted questions Wednesday from the Sunlight Foundation, a new watchdog group, about whether Hastert, who earmarked $207 million in federal dollars for the proposed Prairie Parkway, had his profits swollen because of the highway.

That was what you were thinkin’ ‘bout, right? How the Speaker of the House took $200,000,000 dollars of our money just so’s he could make an extra $2,000,000 himself, right?

Huh…that’s a pretty huge story. And yet it’s been five months since that story came out. Number of times Time Magazine has reported on it: 0.

And the rich and powerful get richer and powerfuller. So much for limited government. It’s pretty much limited to How Much They Can Get Away with Stealing.

But what is the deal with the fascination with his middle name? As someone cursed with a ridiculous middle name ("Girard" for the record), I'm curious.

Because apparently Senator George Felix Allen Jr despises his middle name. It’s that simple. Juvenile? You bet. So’s everything about the senator himself. Which I guess makes it surprising Congressman Jim Kolbe (R-AZ) didn’t invite him to stay over at his Georgetown joint or go on long romantic rafting trips. Guess the fact that he’s old enough to drink is such the turn-off.

Girard’s not so bad. You want bad? We can talk. But offline. I love the guy too much to out him like that. Sorry, folks.

Oh, but The Boy’s middle name was nearly Ringo. Would that have been bad?

Scott—-you forgot to mention Allen chews tobacco. Disgusting habit, if you ask me.

Indeed he does and indeed ‘tis. On the other hand, it’s neither illegal nor immoral, so it’s okay with me. If the tobacco were underage, then I’d be upset. But as long as it’s consensual, I’m just fine with it. that’s how I roll.

Oh, but this is disturbing. Turns our Senator George Felix Allen Jr likes to spit tobacco on women’s feet. You think I’m kidding. And yet there are at least four different stories about it, three of them from reporters who witnessed it first hand.

Who the hell does that? And who would help someone like that get re-elected? I don't just mean the folks who voted for him—the more people really know about him, the fewer votes he gets—I mean, how can people really work for this guy and still look themselves in the mirror?

DT

Can't believe I messed up on the Gentleman Jim Jeffords thing. Sorry about that, Chief. As most poeple who have met me will tell you, I'm an idiot. But it's looking like Bernie Sanders will keep that VT seat in the "I" column, which ostensibly means the "D" column.

And don't fret too much about CT when it comes to the balance of power. I may not know much (like, for example, who's running for the U.S. Senate from VT) but Tailgunner Joe would never have the stones to leave the Democratic party. TG Joe is all about being liked and making the safe move - it's why he supported the 1st Iraq War, why he thought it was a good idea to support this disastrous Iraq War, and why he "denounced" Clinton in '98 when he knew he'd never vote to harm the 42nd President. His moves, if you pardon the sports metaphor, have all the impact and significance of a late-inning grand slam when the game is already a blowout. He's the A-Rod of politics. It's why he's called Tailgunner Joe - while it's a job of bravery in combat, in politics it signifies someone with a propensity of being the last one into the fight.

TG Joe is all about wanting to be liked and doing the easy thing. If we win back even one House of Congress (which we should be able to do even if our guys run down the street naked and on fire while sporting butcher knives), he'll see the easiest road to being liked will be to cozy back up to the Dems. They'll reward him with a pat on the head and nothing significant to do. If he wins, he'll keep his safe seat, his title, and his "honor." And get nothing else. He'll like that.

As a politically active Nutmeg State resident and someone who has watched TG Joe's every calculated little move since being elected to the Senate in '88, it's in the man's DNA not to take risks. Hopefully Ned Lamont wins (although I hate to break it to most of you watching from elsewhere, but Lamont - while better than TG Joe - makes Jon Corzine look like Voltaire; he is not a deep or thoughtful person, sorry to say) but worst case scenario and TG Joe remains in the "D" column. It's going to be a close race, though; Lamont has proven to be strong on the come (making up a 20-point deficit in the final 3 weeks of the primary this past summer) and needs to do it again.

scott

Harry Reid released a statement today:

“Last month, Republicans openly boasted that they would engage in a campaign of personal attacks and smears to hold onto power in Washington. In recent days, we witnessed their latest attempt to do just that.

“Republicans may believe in cover-ups. I believe in ensuring all facts come to light.

“Last week, a highly misleading report by the Associated Press implied that I made a profit selling land I no longer owned. That article was wrong. Here are the facts: I bought the land in 1998, I sold it in 2004, and I listed my ownership of the land on official Senate disclosure forms every single year.

“Now I have taken an additional step. Today, I directed my staff to file amended financial disclosure forms noting that in 2001, I transferred title to the land to a Limited Liability Corporation. As the amended forms make clear, this routine legal move in no way altered my actual ownership of the land. On each disclosure form after 2001, I have added a note to clarify that the land already disclosed in detail on those forms was owned by me through the LLC.

“The Ethics Committee has not yet advised me whether I should file these amended forms, but even if I am not required to do so I am happy to go beyond what is needed to provide the fullest disclosure. The amended forms make clear what was true all along – I owned the land through the LLC when I sold it in 2004.

“Also, in the course of preparing the amended disclosure forms, my staff has identified some clerical errors and two minor matters that were inadvertently left off my original disclosure forms. First, in 2004 I sold about one third of an acre in my hometown of Searchlight. Second, a quarter acre of land that I received from my brother in 1985 appreciated in value above the $1,000 reporting threshold at some point in recent years. Both of these items will be listed on my amended disclosure forms.

“Finally, I have acted today to respond to another issue some plan to raise. I have sent a personal check in the amount of $3,300 to my political campaign to fully reimburse the campaign for donations it made over several years to the employee holiday fund in my apartment building. These donations were made to thank the men and women who work in the building for the extra work they do as a result of my political activities, and for helping the security officers assigned to me because of my Senate position. The donations came from my campaign – no taxpayer dollars were ever involved.

“When the campaign first donated to the holiday fund, its experienced lawyer William Oldaker advised us that such donations were permissible. The campaign's current lawyer, Marc Elias, says the same thing. Nonetheless, I am reimbursing the campaign from my own pocket to prevent this issue from being used in the current campaign season to deflect attention from Republican failures.”

Patrick

Wow, what a desperate phony baloney story here ... I got options that were worth a lot for a brief time in the bubble, but quickly became worthless soon after. Guess what? When that happens there is nothing to report to the IRS.
So Senator Allen was truthful ... and your comments are deparate.
So he is a board member who got compensated (OK). He left the board and the compensation became worthless (bubble burst). OK. He reports it accurately. OK.


Meanwhile, you forgive the sweetheart deal that Reid had with a developer friend that helped Reid make a million dollars, because, well ... er, NOW he is reporting it. Well, thank the Lord for that! ... "“The Ethics Committee has not yet advised me whether I should file these amended forms, but even if I am not required to do so I am happy to go beyond what is needed to provide the fullest disclosure. The amended forms make clear what was true all along – I owned the land through the LLC when I sold it in 2004."

oh wonderful.... and pay no attention to the fact that the LLC was just there to hide the appreciation of the asset from personal forms, BUT that the reporting question is *not* the big story - the big story is the developer-politician quid-pro-quo corruption.

... and it's laughable to use the "well-the-other-side-does-it" defense... Didn't Tom Delay try that one out? Cant you see through that Reid and Burns and Dem and GOP are just the tweedle dee and tweedle dum of DC corruption?

Doubt me? Reid. Mollohan. Menendez. Jefferson. Culture. Of. Corruption.

scott

Meanwhile, you forgive the sweetheart deal that Reid had with a developer friend that helped Reid make a million dollars, because, well ... er, NOW he is reporting it. Well, thank the Lord for that!

Oh my goodness, y'all are just so CUTE when you try to defend the indefensible!

When the Ethics Committee, hand-picked for a maximum of loyalty to the GOP, looks at the Reid deal and decides there's absolutely no there there—perhaps because, well, there is absolutely no there there, in stark contrast to the stunningly corrupt land deal Speaker of the House and Protector of Sexual Predators Denny Hastert (R-IL) made a bundle off of, thanks to misdirected taxpayer money—it's a lost cause.

But good try, punkin! Better luck next time!

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