An update on the latest on these two reality shows and lots of speculation on who might win.
Plus, a reason why Delaware's mealy-mouth Senator Carper wants to surrender in Iraq and the guy does make quitting and running sound righteous. Plus a good story for political junkees about a local election and the national implications of same.
Pic of the Day
|Quote of the Day|
THE PAIN OF McCAIN-FEINGOLD
| Web Site Worth the Visit|
It REALLY Can Read Your Mind
How is it done?
ESP Web Site HERE
+--------------------- Bizarre Laws -----------------------+
Women may be fined for falling asleep under a hair dryer, as can the salon owner.
A special law prohibits unmarried women from parachuting on Sunday.
If an elephant is left tied to a parking meter, the parking fee has to be paid just as it would for a vehicle.
It is illegal to sing in a public place while attired in a swimsuit.
Men may not be seen publicly in any kind of strapless gown.
Having sexual relations with a porcupine is illegal.
It is illegal to skateboard without a license.
When having sex, only the missionary position is legal.
You may not fart in a public place after 6 P.M. on Thursdays.
It is considered an offense to shower naked.
Oral sex is illegal.
You may not kiss your wife's breasts.
Dancing With the Stars-Ian Sent Home Despite Intensive PR Campaign
On the evening of 5/14/07, four semi-finalists in ABC's "Dancing With the Stars" 2007 danced two songs and judging from the high scores, the competition was tough.
Ian Ziering was sent home on the following night but I note something strange. Somebody, and somebody with computer talent, embarked upon a mass campaign evidently to help an anemic Ian along. This Blog was part of this very organized and orchestrated campaign.
The fact is that the campaign to help Ian actually worked the week it was tried as somehow the much better dancer, Joey Fatone, ended up in the bottom two the night Billy Ray was sent home. It was this week that a massive "comment" campaign was embarked upon. Comments, intelligent and thoughtful ones, hardly spam of any sort, were placed on Blogs with posts on the 2007 dancing competition. This Blog received three or four of these comments.
The comments basically complimented the Blogger for such wonder commentary then went on to suggest that Ian Ziering was much better than the American public might think. Click on any of the later posts on "Dancing With the Stars" 2007, delineated below, and scroll down to see and example of this "comment" spam. The scheme seemed to have worked for the week after the comment spam, Ian was in the top tier while Fatone oddly was in the bottom two.
Such comment spam can't work forever and for sure can't turn a sow's ear into a silk purse.
Which is not to say that Ian's dancing was of a sow's ear's level, but out of Laila, Apolo, and Joey Fatone, Ian Ziering was definitely the poorest dancer.
So Ian Ziering was eliminated on 5/15/07 and this coming week the grand finale is scheduled. One of either Laila, Apolo or Joey will win this thing. I do have mine own predictions later in this narrative.
On the evening of 5/14/07, Apolo scored a total of 59 points out of a possible 60 for two dances: the Quick Step and the Cha-Cha. Judge Len grumbled that Apolo's Cha-Cha was too raunchy but I say Pshaw! A little sexiness is required of those Latin dances and go with me, some sultriness will surely bring in the votes.
Laila Ali scored a perfect 60 points for her two dance offerings, a Quickstep and a Cha-Cha. I don't think Laila's going to win this thing because a)Apolo is younger and sexier and b)this year has been very hard on female contenders in this reality series.
Joey Fatone too scored a perfect 60 points for his two dances, a Foxtrot and a Jive. Judge Len pointed out that Joey has a big personality and it shows on the dance floor.
Ian performed a Tango and a Jive. For the Jive Ian sported a big Elvis Presley pompadour wig thing and it was cute. Ian was a pretty good dancer but he always seemed so stiff and formal. The judges commented that Ian finally seemed to have found his niche with that Jive and pompadour thing but alas, it was too late. The voting public didn't buy it. Out of the four semi-finalists, Ian was simply the lowest on the rungs.
My predictions for the final tally on this thing:
Second Place-Joey Fatone
DANCING WITH STARS POST LINKS
Quick Step and Rumba Night
Ten Down to Nine
Nine Down to Eight
Eight to Seven
Seven Down to Six
An old-hand Sent Home
Joey, Laila, Apolo or Ian?
The Bachelor-The "All Night" Date
Well of course the matter of intimacy has to be handled. Some call it sex. However it's couched, the question of sexual compatability between a man and a woman scheduled to marry forever and ever is an issue.
Once upon a time a couple did not engage in premarital sex as a matter of social proprietary, sometimes religious prohibitions, often to avoid a premarital pregnancy and frequently the woman simply didn't want to offer the milk for free. The reality in this era of birth control patches and tests for sexually transmitted diseases is that males and females, all in their late twenties at least in this reality series, is that premarital sex is often considered just plain good common sense.
Hey, I'm a good Catholic and I'd think it only makes sense for mature adults to know that their intimate life is compatable before embarking upon the very permanent committment of marriage.
There's just one little problem with this Bachelor series, however, and it's rather yucky if you ask me.
For Bachelor Andy Baldwin, doctor and naval lieutenant, handsome, intelligent and all-around good catch, is going to be intimate with THREE women that he may choose the final one who would be his wife.
This show's producers have handled this delicate matter rather, er, delicately, I'd suggest. This Blogger, however, isn't overlooking the obvious in this matter. For there's so many issues regarding this my mind is boggled.
On 5/14/07, there were three ladies left out of an original cadre of 25 females, all aspiring to catch the eye, and hand, of Lieutenant Andy Baldwin. Andy is this year's Bachelor and he vows that he plans to marry the lady of his choice at the series' finale. In previous runs of this ABC cult reality series, the prospect of marriage between the Bachelor and his chosen lady was merely suggested but this year, Andy stated firmly that he intended to marry his choice of a life's mate, said mate to definitely be chosen on this TV show.
As a curious cult viewer, I thought this firm promise of an eventual wedding to be intriguing. Only thing, in prior series' runs, the issue of sex could be waltzed around. There was no firm promise of an eventual marriage. Thus there was no obvious pressing need for an intimate encounter save AFTER the winning lady was chosen by the Bachelor to be his....girlfriend? But a wife? Adults amongst us would assume that a 30 year old man is not likely to choose a wife without having been intimate with his choice of a life mate first.
Well sure there's the "40 Year Old Virgin" and some religions absolutely prohibit premarital sex, no matter the ages of the potential bride and groom. But go with me here, it's not likely that a 30 year old man would be a virgin at any rate much less be in a virginal state with the woman he will marry. Dittos to the potential bride in this scenario.
So for Andy Baldwin to finalyze his choice for a wife, adult experienced viewers simply would not believe that he plucked a flower of womanhood out of a field of 25 without having known the pleasure of intimacy with his choice.
On 5/14/07 the female field of potential Mrs. Baldwins was down to three and affable Bachelor Andy was conflicted and torn as to who he would choose to be his wife and bear his children. Andy professed to adore every one of three remaining females and the logic, as I figure, was the pleasure and companionship of intimacy was required to help Andy narrow down his choices. I also figure every one of the females involved agreed to this stipulation.
Of course each of these woman COULD have spent the night in the vaunted "fantasy suite" with Andy and NOT have engaged in any sexual activity. There was no video of such activity offered and as discretion and FTC rules require, the experience was not discussed on the air. Each lady received an invitation from the show's MC offering her the opportunity to refuse the separate bedrooms as originally set up in exchange for a night in the "fantasy suite" for her and Andy to enjoy together. Every female accepted the offer so we know that Andy and the female were alone in the fantasy suite for the entire night.
For purposes of this narrative, we'll assume Andy was intimate with all three of those females in that fantasy suite.
There is just NO way I could ever agree to such a thing and frankly I'm surprised that these ladies, all of whom seem right nice and mentally healthy, agreed to it either. Sheesh. Just KNOWING that ole Andy, no matter how nice he seems, was having a, heh, "bangup" good time with another lady while I waited my turn.....folks, the whole concept gives me the creeps. Although I think I've accurately described the logic of it all, see above, nothing can change the fact that while Danielle awaited her turn Andy was very busy pleasuring Tessa.
It's contra-human nature is what I'm saying here but go on, the notion of selecting a wife out of 25 very willing females, all on national TV, in a bit different as well. Just taking a real life break here.
Danielle, by the way, was the one out of the three remaining ladies who was sent home. Remember, Danielle was sent packing AFTER Andy had a night of fun with her in the fantasy suite. See how this notion gets ugly once you start thinking about it?
This coming Monday-5/21/07, Andy will choose his bride from the two remaining contenders, Danielle and Bevon. God knows I can't stand the Bevon woman, who cries at the drop of a hat and seems to think drama is the mainstay of a "happy" life. I like Tessa and from previews of the upcoming finale someone's going to receive a huge engagement ring. After that we'll see if the two really get married. I'm sure some tabloid or another will follow up.
I also note from the previews something even MORE surreal than the marathon nights in the fantasy suite. For televised vignettes of BOTH of these finalists feature them telling Andy that she LOVED him.
Folks, at the very least I would think the most vulnerable of sentiments could be withheld until I at least knew that I'd WON this thing. For example, Bevon cries as she tells Andy she loves him. Tessa reveals she loves him as well. Is this revelation necessary? I mean, couldn't these ladies be allowed to keep what little pride they have left after enduring all the bizarreness in this weird reality series?
But there you have it. This coming Monday, will it be Bevon or Tessa?
My moneys on Tessa but who knows, if Bevon cries enough perhaps she'll win the groom.
BACHELOR 2007 LINKS-Officer and Gentleman
Let the Roses Begin
Wiggly Jiggly Boob Night
Down to Nine
Three More Gone; Down to Six
Three Left...On to the Folks
Tessa or Bevon?
Delaware's Tom Carper Twists His Tongue on the Logic of His "Surrender" Vote
I became enraged over the games being played on the Iraq funding bill and on the day of this writing I note that the Senate, AKA the House of Lords, has resoundly rejected a resolution to demand a date certain for pullout of American troops from Iraq. Common sense would dictate that when one is engaged is any sort of fight, to provide a time and date when one will stop fighting is to effectively surrender. For all the enemy must do is lay low and wait until the date and time stipulated arrive, right?
A date certain is what that joke of a bill passed by the Senate on 4/26/07 did and Bush did veto the thing. So I called my own fine Senator, Tom Carper, and this is the response I received from his office.
Kudos to Mr. Carper's speech writers. For even I could not have written such a fine piece of fiction and lies and proudly distributed the nonsense to my constituents as if they were idiots of the highest order.
Note my comments in bold.
From: Kincaid, Trevor (Carper) On Behalf Of Office, Press (Carper)
Sent: Thursday, April 26, 2007 5:37 PM
To: Office, Press (Carper)
Subject: SEN. CARPER DELIVERS SENATE SPEECH ON IRAQ VOTE
FOR RELEASE: April 26, 2007
CONTACT: Bette Phelan, 202-224-2441
SEN. CARPER DELIVERS SENATE SPEECH ON IRAQ VOTE
Senator Urges President to Sign Iraq Supplemental Funding Legislation
WASHINGTON (April 26, 2007) – Sen. Tom Carper (D-Del.) today voted in support of the Senate’s Emergency Supplemental bill that fully funds troops and operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. NOTE....THIS STATEMENT IS A LIE....READ ON
The full text of the speech Sen. Carper delivered on the Senate floor today is as follows:
IRAQ SUPPLEMENTAL CONFERENCE REPORT
TALKING POINTS – FLOOR STATEMENT
APRIL 26, 2007
The Founders of this country did not believe in monarchy. Meeting in Philadelphia 220 years ago and some 30 miles from my home in Delaware, they did not invest all power over our national affairs and our national destiny in the hands of one person. Rather, they created a separation of powers. They created three co-equal branches of government.
When it comes to charting this nation’s course in Iraq, all three branches of our government have responsibilities.
Before the President could go to war in Iraq, he had to come to Congress for approval. THE PRESIDENT DOES NOT HAVE TO GET APPROVAL FROM CONGRESS TO WAGE WAR...ANOTHER LIE. THE PRESIDENT NEEDS CONGRESSIONAL APPROVAL FOR WAR FUNDING BUT WITH NO ADVANCE NOTICE TO CONGRESS AT ALL THE PRESIDENT CAN LAUNCH A WAR. CARPER's HOPING WE WERE EDUMACATED IN DELAWARE SCHOOLS AND DON'T KNOW THIS. Now, to continue that war, he has had to come to Congress, each and every year, to request and receive approval for more funding.
Both Congress and the Supreme Court have exercised oversight over the President’s war policies – Congress through oversight hearings, and the Supreme Court through rulings on constitutional questions concerning the detention and interrogation of prisoners.
That Congress act as a co-equal branch of government, and not as a rubber stamp for decisions made by the President, is what the Founders wanted in 1787.THE FOUNDERS MADE THE PRESIDENT THE COMMANDER IN CHIEF...THE PRESIDENT RUNS A WAR...ANOTHER LIE. IF THE FOUNDERS DIDN'T WANT THE PRESIDENT IN CHARGE OF WAR MATTERS WHY DID THEY BOTHER WITH THAT COMMANDER IN CHIEF THING?
It was, in part, because Congress failed in recent years to exercise adequate oversight over the President’s policies in Iraq that the American people went to the polls last fall and demanded a change in Congress.WHILE THIS MIGHT NOT BE AN OUTRIGHT LIE, IT's CONJECTURE AT BEST
So let us not debate whether Congress has a role to play in charting our course in Iraq. And let us not kid ourselves that Congress can meet its responsibilities in this regard by continuing to rubber stamp the decisions of the President.
The President has come to Congress once again to request continued funding for the war in Iraq. To put matters in the most basic of terms, Congress has three options. We can say “yes.” We can say “no.” Or we can say “yes, but.”
To simply say “yes,” after U.S. policy and conditions on the ground have drifted in the wrong direction for more than three years, would be to abdicate our responsibility as a co-equal branch of government.
To simply say “no,” when we have troops on the ground, in harm’s way, would be a betrayal of the very Army this Congress is charged by the Constitution to raise and support.
The responsible action is to respond to the President’s request is to say “yes, but.” It is to provide our troops with the support they require to perform their assigned mission, but at the same time to exercise our power as a co-equal branch to begin to change the nature of that mission.
The first part of our response to the President – funding the troops – should not be controversial. The President has requested the funding. We are providing that troop funding. Indeed, we are not only providing what the President requested. We are making some additions, particularly to improve the care of the wounded when they return home.
The second part of our response to the President – seeking a change in the nature of the mission in Iraq – should not be controversial, either.
There is an old saying: “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” We have been approaching the challenge we face in Iraq in essentially the same manner for close to four years now. Over that time, conditions on the ground have grown progressively worse. It is clearly time we change our approach. ANOTHER LIE....THERE WAS LAUNCHED SOMETHING CALLED A "SURGE" RECENTLY. PERHAPS SENATOR CARPER HASN'T HEARD? THIS IS NOT THE SAME THING AS "DOING THE SAME THING OVER AND OVER"
Last year, the minority in Congress called for a change. In response, the American people made that minority in Congress a majority. That majority has a responsibility to the people who elected us and who pay our keep to follow through, and demand change from the President.
The changes we seek are not sudden or rash. They reflect the sober assessments and the unanimous recommendations of the bipartisan Iraq Study Group, co-chaired last year by Jim Baker, a prominent Republican, and former Rep. Lee Hamilton, a highly-regarded Democrat who also served as vice-chair of the 9-11 Commission.
The Iraq Study Group JIM BAKER HAS A DOG IN THIS RACE. HE HAS A "DIPLOMACY COMPANY" HE WAS APPOINTED BY NO ONE. USING THE IRAQ STUDY GROUP AS BASIS FOR CONGRESSIONAL DECISIONS IS AS LEGITIMATE AS USING THE KAITLYN MAE BOOK BLOG AS BASIS FOR SUCH DECISIONS" said we need to make it clear to the leaders of the various factions in Iraq that we are not going to be there forever. That is the first message we are sending with this legislation.
The President equates this with surrender. But his own defense secretary said otherwise just last week. Secretary Gates said the fact that Congress is beginning to send this message to the leadership in Iraq is having a beneficial effect on the ground in Iraq.
The Iraq Study Group said that a political settlement between the factions in Iraq is needed to quell the sectarian violence. The legislation Congress will send to the President establishes benchmarks by which Congress and the American people can measure the progress of the Administration and the leadership in Iraq toward achieving this political settlement.
The Iraq Study Group said that a diplomatic settlement is needed amongst Iraq’s neighbors to ensure regional stability. The legislation Congress will send the President creates a window of opportunity, while our forces are transitioning to a new mission, for a regional diplomatic offensive aimed at containing Iraq’s sectarian violence and preventing a broader regional conflict.
The President does not want to change the mission in Iraq. He wants to do more of the same. The bipartisan Iraq Study Group rejected that approach. The American people have rejected that approach. And now, the Congress of the United States is rejecting that approach.
For those who wonder what this debate is all about, it really comes down to two points – one a point of agreement, the other a point of disagreement.
On one thing, Congress and the President agree. We should support the troops. The way to support the troops is for Congress to pass this bill and for the President to sign it. The funding is all here.
On one thing, Congress and the President disagree. Congress wants to begin to change the mission in Iraq. Unfortunately, the President wants appears to want more of the same. I REMIND CARPER ONCE AGAIN ABOUT THE RECENT "SURGE" EMBARKED UPON...HARDLY MORE OF THE SAME. I WONDER IF CARPER EVEN WATCHES CNN WITH THIS STUFF HE SEEMS TO NOT KNOW.
We disagree on this second point, of whether the time has come for a change. The question is whose view should ultimately prevail.
The answer is the will of the American people should prevail. They are the ones paying for this war. It is they who are sending their sons and daughters to fight and die in this war.
As they told us loudly and clearly at the ballot box last fall, the American people want a change. AGAIN, SPECULATION. THE DEMOCRATIC "MAJORITIES" ARE SLIM, ONE IN THE SENATE AND A HANDFULL IN THE HOUSE OF REPS. HARDLY A RESOUNDING CLARION TO CHANGE EVERYTHING
To provide our troops with the support they deserve and to provide the American people with the change they demand.
I realize the conventional wisdom around here is that the President will veto this bill, send it back to us and, then, we’ll all get serious about hammering something out that can become law.
With all due respect, Mr. President, this legislation should become law. I urge you to drop your veto threat and sign it.
# # #
How Republicans Should Handle Things-A Local Microcosm With National Implications
Yesterday, on 5/5/07, a little known individual known as Greg Hastings won a special election to represent Delaware's 41 district in Delaware's capital, Dover.
There had been another fellow holding that job, having been legally and eagerly elected by the local populace. His name is John Atkins.
How the saga of John Atkins evolved and dissolved and how the Republican party of Sussex county handled John Atkins and got another Republican, aforementioned Greg Hastings, is a model for Republicans across the fruited plains in terms of rogue GOP elected officials, the dismissal of same and gasp, actually winning an election. This small, little-noticed election in the swamps of Delaware played as a dramatic microcosm of political chicanery, elected bad behavior, a new way to communicate and the down and dirty on winning the vote. For without winning the vote, there is nothing, absolutely nothing,-not nobility, not winning ideas, not sparkling idealology- which can be presented and voted on in the democratic forum.
Republicans tend to forget this from time to time.
So John Atkins is a young fellow and was beloved by his district. Only Mr. Atkins got himself a bit on the inebriated side in a bar in a ocean-side resort known as Ocean City near Atkins' district but in the state of Maryland. The details of Atkins' night of debauchery are blurry and confusing, the pursuit of truth not helped by Atkins' constant lies and obfuscations. At any rate, Atkins', allegedly drunk, still got into his car and decided to drive home. He was stopped by Ocean City police and the first thing Atkins did is confront the OC police as to his identity and the importance of his own fine self. It was a "Do you know who I am" moment. The OC police, perhaps young fellows themselves and concerned with this big political fish they managed to catch, didn't bring Atkins in to the station. Nor did they arrest Atkins, impound his car, or even issue a ticket, all things they surely would have done to our drunken driving selves but let's allow that these types of things go on and let's allow that Atkins' brazen demand that his status as an elected Delaware big kahuna allow him freedom to also be the sort of thing that happens.
The OC police did, as I understand it, demand that Atkins call some friends to drive his car home because, ahem, the man was drunk. So thank goodness for that. Again, as I understand, some friends or relatives of Atkins showed up and the OC police were satisfied and allowed Atkins to go home so long as he wasn't driving. Allegedly, after the OC police left the scene, Atkins told his friends to forget about it, that he was fine and he would drive himself home. Which he did. Indeed. Even though the man was allowed one get-out-of-jail-free card, he still got behind that wheel and drove himself home. Allegedly.
But it doesn't stop there! Goodness no. Allegedly Atkins had some domestic problems. I'm not sure if the domestic problems happened the same night or at another time but what happened, somebody in the Atkins' house phoned the police emergency line but hung up before speaking to anyone. As is normal procedure, police were sent to his home anyway. Atkins' wife then said the phone call was a mistake on her part. Allegedly.
The Atkins' story goes on and on, involving his demand for his babysitter to lie to investigators and goodness knows the Delaware House of Reps Ethics Committee knows much more and the story gets released in dribs and drabs just when us stupid Delaware citizens think we've heard it all.
The Atkins' tale of drink and domestic problems went on and on over the local air waves here in Delaware and the whole constantly ongoing and changing story was destroying the credibility of the Republican party throughout the state, but especially in Sussex County..
A little background now on Delaware's Sussex county, even Delaware itself.
Delaware is a "blue" state. It's blue in that the state went Democratic in the last presidential election but do not be fooled. Delaware is a very, very light blue and every day it becomes lighter. This is because one of Delaware's three counties, Sussex county, is red, very, very red. For Sussex county Delaware has been recipient of mid-life immigrants from nearby Maryland, Pennsylvania and New Jersey. These immigrants mostly moved to Delaware to enjoy the mild climate of Sussex county Delaware, the space and lack of urban sprawl and the very cheap property taxes. See the Delaware politicos never bothered much with the property taxes in its largest county (indeed the largest county east of the Mississippi) because...well once upon a time there weren't very many homeowners in Sussex county Delaware. Now that there's been an explosion of home building in Sussex county, the politicos could slap theirselves silly. Because to try and reach into the pockets of these new residents, most already suspect of liberal intrusive governments having experienced same in their home states, is a tricky maneuver. The newer residents of Sussex county are savvy and ready to fight for their safety from the government that would tax them back to Maryland, New Jersey or Pennsylvania levels.
The northern politicians in Delaware, ie , heh, Joe Biden and his ilk, dislike Sussex County intensely. In fact, Delaware's Governor, Ruth Minner, declared Sussex county to be "enemy territory" during the last election. Which is fine because Sussex countians dislike Nanny Minner a whole bunch. We tolerate Delaware's one and only representative to the House, Mike Castle, a Republican with suspect Conservative values. We don't like Joe Biden at all and often refer to him as "Hairplugs". Tom Carper is a Democratic Senator and Joe Biden's partner in crime.
Thus Sussex county grows in population every day. Sussex county forms clubs and organizations. Sussex county churches are filled to the brim on days of worship. Sussex county is also home to Delaware's big ocean-front area: Rehoboth, Dewey and Bethany Beaches. Thus, heh, Sussex county brings in many bucks to Delaware.
Sussex county is a force to be reckoned with. The Wilmington politicians really hate this.
I believe there is only one major Democratic politician in Sussex county and he is, heh, a DINO (Democrat in Name Only). Beyond this, Sussex county is held firmly and tenaciously by the Republican party.
The drama that was John Atkins was a test. For the Democrats danced with joy that a Republican was in so much trouble in Sussex county and hey, it was their chance. With this crack in the armor, maybe the Democrats could gain a foothold in that bastion of stubborn American individuals who give liberal politicos such grief.
The head of the Sussex County Republican party is a young fellow, Dave Burris. Burris comes from a political family, his father having once ran for Governor. Dave Burris is a Blogger, a fact which endears him to me but sparks suspicion in the hearts of elder Sussex countians who suspect anything different as being a liberal plot to take over the world.
It would turn out that the John Atkins' exploits and lies were casting aspersions on the Republican party in general and preventing the Republican party's agenda from going anywhere in Dover. John Atkins was too quickly becoming the face of the Republican party in Sussex county and he was nothing like the many fine Republican office-holders in this county, most of them businessmen and citizens of a high caliber. A much higher caliber individual than the Democrats up north but hey, that's this Blogger's opinion, take it for what it's worth.
Dave Burris did something really strange. He sent out a mass email to all Sussex county Republicans. In the email he asked that Sussex county Republicans band together and demand that John Atkins resign.
I was shocked when that email came into my Ebox. What happened to Ronaldus Reagan's 11th commandment: Never Talk Bad About a Fellow Republican? Not that I wasn't intrigued by Burris' email in that manner of a human being leaning over a bit too far to hear the latest gossip. Of course I'd been hearing about the Atkins' saga every day via the local newspapers and radio stations. Such events as this are the delight of the journalists. According to the Burris email, however, it turns out that not only was Atkins guilty of the bad behavior which he was denying to anyone who would listen, he was also out and about and carousing in the bars even WHILE the Delaware House Ethics Committee was meeting to decide what to do with him. I, frankly, was disgusted. I mean, couldn't the man keep a low profile at least until the storm blew over? Further, according to Burris' email, Atkins showed no remorse about his behavior but instead was railing about the many Democrats in the House guilty of much worse behavior than he. Which I believe because Democrats are known far and wide for their bad behavior, witness their President Bill Clinton. This factoid does not, however, absolve Atkins of his drinking, driving, lying and bad behavior and it was Atkins who was under scrutiny, NOT the other Democrats which John complained about. Dave Burris' email was a call for Atkins' fellow Republicans to push for an expulsion of Atkins from the Delaware House of Representatives, an action they didn't want to do, read that Reagan commandment again.
In short, Sussex county Republicans really wanted Atkins to express remorse, stop the adolescent behavior and move on. Atkins, on the other hand, was full of himself, cockey and in general annoying. Again, this is all this Blogger's assessment although I did have access to some inside stuff in all this which I'll detail in a bit.
The Republicans coalesced in response to Burris' mass email to...well to the masses. This was likely discussed earlier with all concerned but I've no proof of this. The plan was, the Republicans, a majority in Delaware's House of Representative, were going to call for Atkins' resignation and they had the numbers to do it. Atkins, knowing this was going to happen, resigned.
God Bless Him.
But Atkins didn't resign out of a goodness in his heart, let's not fool ourselves. He resigned because Delaware Republicans, especially those in Sussex county, were sick of him. Atkins knew if he didn't resign he was going to get kicked out. Burris' email was the catapault which united the more ordinary Republicans in Sussex county...ie...not just the elected elite.
Now this action by Dave Burris brought a lot of criticism down on his head and Dave Burris was a)new to the position and b)a Blogger, a very suspect sort of thing to be by Conservative Sussex county standards. His mass email of criticism of a fellow Republican was not greeted with cheers and enthusiasm. And while many Sussex county Republicans were disgusted by Atkins' shenanigans and the result of taking up all the oxygen in the political atmosphere, these same Sussex county Republicans were not necessarily convinced that Burris' method of handling the matter was the way to go.
So the Republican party of Sussex county held its monthly meeting at Deltech Community College and the turnout was huge. Dave Atkins was in attendance that night although I didn't know it. I too was in attendance and goodness, I was only there because it was the first time I attended these monthly meetings. I had no idea of the drama about to unfold.
For the plan was for Dave Burris to obtain either a vote of confidence by the attendees at this monthly meeting or a vote of NO confidence. It was not possible for a motion to be made to remove Dave Burris from office followed up by a vote of the membership. Something about parliamentary procedures. Dave could, as he explained, ask for a vote of confidence and before said vote, he agreed to abide by the prevailing vote.
The press was kicked out of this meeting and hey, they were there. They were not, however, supposed to be in an actual Republican party meeting as this was not a public thing yon reader should understand. After all this, a vote was taken....Do We Want Dave Burris to Continue As Head of the Sussex County GOP....or NOT?
It must be understood that the northern Republicans, including the Delaware GOP Head, also did not quite approve of this action by Dave Burris. Although I have no proof of this beyond rumor. I am a member of the Sussex County Republican Women's Club, a very powerful organization which brings in BIG bucks for the Republican party and hey, we're in Sussex County.....basket of Conservative politics. I'd heard about disapproval from the northern GOP bigwigs via my meetings at the SCRWC but admittedly it was mostly rumor. Terry Strine, head of the Delaware Republican party, did not tell me this himself is what I'm saying here. I'm also saying, believe at your own risk, that if it's said at the SCRWC meeting, it's probably true. Yon reader can decide.
So I'm not sure if the confidence vote was done to satisfy the mighty northern Republicans that all of Sussex County is behind Burris or if it was solely Burris' idea. Whatever the reason, Dave Burris wanted this vote of confidence and he got it. All attendees that night voted UNANIMOUSLY to keep Dave Burris as head of the Sussex County Republican party. Take that you northern RINO Republicans and friends of Mike Castle.
Thank goodness the press was out of the room because there ensued a rather nasty discussion of which yours Blogger truly here was part of, although I was an innocent and naive as the wind-driven snow. For I did not know that John Atkins was in the room although in hindsight I had to wonder why it didn't occur to me. But didn't I stand right up and as part of my defense of a "confidence" vote for Dave Burris, and excoriate John Atkins, at one point using the word "reprehensible"? Like I said, I didn't know the man was sitting right there, two rows down from me. Heh.
Well Mr. Atkins didn't like my damning adjective and he went on to defend himself against the allegations in Burris' email. Burris then stepped up and said, adamantly and so sober that hey, I believed him, that he would personally stand by every word in his email. Of course I had to respond to Mr. Atkins' anger at me but not so fast, m'lady, not so fast. First we had to have everyone vote if I could speak again as there were others who hadn't spoken yet at all. I suspect that the crowd was enjoying the verbal joust fest in which I found myself although I rarely lose this sort of thing. Heh.
They voted to let me speak again and I did. While I think my fine but harsh words helped Burris get that confidence vote, in the end I wonder if I didn't do more harm than good. Although I'll gladly accept any commentary that I made no impact at all on the result as likely as true as anything. But I did mention that Atkins' continual bad behavior plus his refusal to walk off quietly into that good night could effectively eviscerate the Republican party in Sussex county. I fear that this comment might have put wild ideas in Atkins' head although again, I sure hope not.
Atkins knew that the confidence vote for Dave Burris meant his time was up. His only chance was to somehow get Burris kicked out of there. In the weeks leading up to the replacement election, Atkins embarked upon a major write-in campaign, somehow convincing many formerly intelligent voters in the 41st district that he was the victim of an upstate Republican smear campaign, something that couldn't be further from the truth. A replacement candidate was found, a fine fellow named Greg Hastings, a prominent business leader, family man with two sons who were Eagle Scouts, a member of the local school board for yea many years. The Democrats smelled blood. They were like sharks in the water, circling the wounded prey, which would be the Republican party. If the Democrats could get a foothold in a major Sussex county district well maybe they could promise enough free stuff to slowly turn all of Sussex county into Democrat land. A former Mayor of Atkins' district's major town was pulled out of moth balls and polished up. His name was Lynn Bullock.
From what I've heard of Mr. Lynn Bullock, he was a respected Mayor and well-liked by his constituents. And while he was aligned with the party of the donkey, his constituency was largely conservative and if he did really serve them well than he likely governed conservatively. At least as I speculate as this was well before my life in Delaware.
Only Bullock's candidacy was crafted and created by the Democrats up in Wilmington and, indeed, Bullock's only fundraiser was held in Dover, far from the district in question, and the attendees were mostly lobbyists. Bullock's candidacy was hardly a local event driven by the grass root Democrats of the 41st district. Meanwhile, the lovely John Atkins, who is history on this day might I add, was out and about and stroking up the populace for write in votes. Rumors flew and one prominent one was that Atkins was being financed in his campaign of disruption (for surely he knew he simply could NOT win) by the Democratic party. Well Democrats are known for this sort of thing all across the fruited plains but whatever the reason, Atkins was just being nasty and hard-nosed. First....HE ALREADY RESIGNED! I mean, I want to ask the fools who voted for him, did he mean it when he resigned? Was he lying when he said he was sorry for his bad behavior? Then he runs again, against his former party that was so good to him, he ran again against that party's candidate. Why would anyone waste their precious vote for someone so obviously a liar and a turncoat?
As Greg Hastings was groomed and trained to be an office holder, as the replacement election loomed, as the two weeks until the big day crept up, Sussex county Republican spirits waffled. The Democrats were throwing everything they could to take that seat. Add to the fear, the Republican/Democrat ratio in the Delaware house was 22/19. If the Republicans lost the 41st district, the ratio would then be 21/20. It would take but one Republican to be tempted by offers to turn Democrat, a la Patrick Leahey of national fame, and the Delaware House of Representatives would be turned over to Democratic control. Mighty Sussex county would be tromped to nothingness.
I was disspirited and resigned to a bad outcome from all of this. I regretted my words at that meeting when I feared I might have put ideas into Atkins' head. Even though he probably didn't remember me from Adam, it's the way one thinks in moments of despair.
Then something amazing happened.
The ads started running.
A former Independent who ran for Senator as an alternative to disgruntled Republicans, particularly disgruntled Sussex county Republicans, came out with a smashing endorsement of Greg Hastings. The Republican Nominee for Governor in 2006 also endorsed Hastings.
Better, ads lambasting the Democratic party and Lynn Bullock in particular, begin filling the radio air waves.
The killer ad warned voters in District 41 that the Democrats have been chomping at the bit to get into Sussex county. "They resent your low property taxes and would love to get a bite out of them" as the ad paraphrased. Another killer ad, a stomping, rip-roaring murdering ad, warned District 41 voters that Lynn Bullock supported a local proposition that would allow cloning of humans AND yet another bill that would support federally funded EMBRYONIC stem cell research.
Sussex Countians despise cloning and embryonic stem cell research, as does most of Delaware frankly. The politicos in Wilmington keep trying to pull the wool over the voters' eyeballs by creating confusing language in bills they want to pass. Few in Delaware embrace cloning and the use of embryos but it would seem that quite a few Delaware politicians, including REPUBLICAN Mike Castle, think the federal government should be funding such research. The notion of Republicans supporting this notion does not sit well with Republicans in the south of Delaware. The ads pointing out the overwhelming Democratic support for this were killers for Lynn Bullock.
Another great ad featured a short, sound byte of Lynn Bullock. Indeed three candidates, Bullock, Hastings and the Independent, Butler, had all engaged in a debate over the local talk radio air waves. Hastings had been well-couched and while he wasn't running over with charisma, his responses were thoughtful, cautious and well-presented. Further, if Hastings didn't have a position on a question he didn't hesitate to suggest that he would have to think more about it before taking a stand. I like this in a politician. I'd much rather have a politician suggest more thought on a matter than take a position that would later have him or her speaking out of both sides of their mouth. Lynn Bullock did a fine job but it was very evident that he was a Democrat and very liberal. The Independent was just that, independent and lost in the crowd.
I don't know which debate question Bullock was answering, but at one point he said the words "I don't expect to get much done in Dover". Whatever Bullock was responding to, those words were taken from his response and played over and over in one Sussex county Republican ad. It was great.
Oh sure, the Dems complained that Bullock's words were taken out of context and hey, I don't know, they probably were. I can't believe a politician just up and said they didn't expect to get much done. But Bullock said it and some very smart pubbies pulled it out of the debate-speak and made it into a scathing anti-Bullock ad. For who wants to vote for a candidate who openly admitted he wouldn't get much done?
Folks, the onslought of those political ads, most paid for by the Sussex county Republican party...ie Dave Burris, were great. At times I danced and sang as they were played over the local air waves...over and over and over and over.
I knew that Dave Burris was determined to bring this election home for the pubbies and damned if he didn't.
Of course there was a HUGE grass roots campaign in district 41, a grass roots campaign orchestrated by quite a few of my own co-SCRWC members. I didn't help with that campaign because a)I don't live in the 41 district and b)I feared my big mouth had done enough damage already.
So the moral of all this verbiage is that if anyone thinks that Republicans should allow out-of-control fellow Republicans drink themselves silly and be, in general, lying lawbreakers while pointing the finger to similar behaving Democrats as justification, such thinking is just plain wrong. Ronaldaldus Maximus' famous 11th commandment applies in limited situations. John Atkins was sucking all the political oxygen out of the air and the man didn't even have the maturity and decency to at least keep a low profile while the Delaware House Ethics Committee was leaking all sorts of stuff to the press. He was making every serious Republican from Sussex county look as shallow as him. I don't care if the Democrats in the Delaware House behave ten times worse than John Atkins on a good day, John Atkins was an embarrassment and as Sussex county struggles to get the respect this mighty county deserves, we don't need the likes of Atkins sullying the political surround. Besides, after the blow dealt to Atkins, how are the Democrats going to defend their own drunkards and carousers?
The second moral is this notion that Republicans should stand by stoicly while the opposition party lies, obsfucates and takes everything a Republican says out of context is total nonsense. Who would play a game of Monopoly if the other player is allowed twice the money? The rules are the rules and playing by two sets of rules is silly beyond belief. Indeed the United States of American is based on the concept of equality of all humans. So why does the Republican party think it makes them somehow more noble to accept shackles on everything it does whilst the Democrats laugh and take advantage of such pristine and silly notions?
The Republican party did not tell one lie about Lynn Bullock. The Republican party did point out the Democratic history of taxing and that bit about supporting embryonic stem cell research. The Democrats have this rule that when the Republicans tell the truth about them the Republicans are somehow cheating. What's even more enrageing, those blow-dried fools in the national Senate House of Lords actually accept this nonsense.
So in a small county in Delaware, the Republican party did something the entrenched Lords in the national Republican party could learn from. They banded together, threw out the garbage, and got a new Republican elected. Against all odds, against everything the well-financed Democrats could throw at them, against a disgruntled former ill-behaved Republican who will now go down in the ash heap of Sussex county history.
The state of Delaware, if nowhere else, will now sit up and take notice of the power of Republican conservatives who take themselves quite seriously.
Kudos to Dave Burris. It's a new day dawning.
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