Showing posts from November 27, 2005

New additions to the feed digest
It's a mad mad world

Since they were nice enough to post the list in a collective space, I added several of the SDRadical weblogs to my RSS Feed Aggregator in the right hand column for viewing.

When it's behaving. In Firefox, there's hardly ever a problem. It's just in IE that it goes funky and kicks it to the bottom of the page whenever Epp or someone uses an extra long URL in the first sentence of their post.

Anyway, as I noted, I'm adding several of the SDRadical blogs, since they tend to be political. You'll also notice that - to put it lightly - their views can tend to be a bit fringy. High Plains Drifter (previously tokola resistance) was listed before. What have I added? As follows:
Vermillion Community for Peace and Justice
"Vermillion's Direct Action Community Support Group." News and updates from the rowdiest bunch of activists on the USD campus and across Vermillion. Vermillion Community for Peace and Justice

Progressive Vermillion
"Coordinating and networking…

oops and an UPDATE

Yes. I know the video was screwed up in the interview. The 8 minute segment cuts off after 2. I'll have it fixed in the AM. My bad.

I've got it fixed now - it does boost the file size to 12-15 meg, but I reduced the window size to help it load

South Dakota War College Video Blog Post #2
A few minutes with SDGOP Executive Director Max Wetz

SDWC-VB #2 is an interview with South Dakota Republican Party Executive Director Max Wetz You'll hear his views on what's in store for the GOP in 2006, the party's rising stars, upcoming party promotional efforts and more.

Click on Max's picture for the interview (Reduce the window size for better clarity). I've managed to keep the file size down to 5 megabytes this time.

Once again, you get to see me live and in the flesh.

Coming Soon - South Dakota War College Video Weblog #2 with South Dakota GOP Executive Director Max Wetz

Depending on whether I get snowed in this weekend or not, you're going to soon have the next edition of the South Dakota War College's Video Blog. I have the video "in the can" and I'm going to get to editing.

This should be good - Max talks about his roommate while he was a legislative Intern, the South Dakota GOP weblog, why Republican will continue our dominance, and a few other things.

All coming soon on the South Dakota War College

And you think I’m tough on the Mainstreamers….

I just got my free copy of the Dakota Voice Newspaper run by Bob Ellis out in Rapid City. I had requested my copy because I wanted to read what they had to say about the Mainstream coalition. The teaser on their website read “The Mainstream Coalition – What’s the real agenda?” So I bit, and got my copy.

It was literally 2 full newspaper pages of article on the coalition, specifically with Mainstream Coalition Chairman Mel Olson, and Executive Director Ed Olson.

It’s way too long to completely reproduce here, and I expect it will be fully reproduced on the Dakota Voice website shortly. But for the sake of piquing your interest in the article, here’s a snippet:
On the issue of abortion, Mel Olson said, “The important thing about the abortion debate is not whether abortion is legal. It’s how the debate is carried forward, and how a legal right is limited. The mainstream coalition would say if it’s answered in a constitutional way, in a civil debate, well, then, okay, majority rules. But to …

So, you want to join the Legislative Army?

As I sit here waiting for my care to warm up, my mind is on candidate recruitment.

I had made contact a couple of days ago with someone who had ran last time, and barely lost. I offered my assistance again, and left it at that. They responded that they weren't sure they wanted to give it another run just yet, as they were just starting an endeavour.

But within a day, I had reports of them making a couple of phone calls checking on time committments that the office entailed, etc. So I know it's weighing heavily on their mind. If I made a couple of phone calls to get some encouragement going their way, I'm betting I could get them to pull the trigger and do it.

Candidate recruitment is funny that way. Good people spend most of their time talking themselves out of it, as opposed to just taking the plunge. That's why they sometimes need a friendly push. Often that friendly push comes from party officials, respected colleagues, and top elected officials.

When he was around,…

Everybody go to J.A.I.L.

I was reading one of the latest editions of the Madison Daily Leader when I came across the editorial they did on the Judicial Accountability Initiative Law.

I didn't care for the J.A.I.L. measure in the first place, but after reading the editorial, it got my attention even more. If you were thinking this was a good idea, read this and think again.

Here's part of the editorial that got my attention:

JAIL would have a budget of more than $2.5 million. The Legislature would be required (no choice) to establish a Special Grand Jury facility (centrally located) but not within a mile of any judicial body (talk about paranoia!).

And this is cute: it will be funded through fines, fees and forfeitures, but if that doesn't produce enough money, the Legislature will have to (again no choice) impose "appropriate surcharges upon the civil court filing fees of corporate litigants." So, before it gets started, the legislature is going to have to establish a facility apparently in …

J-Ro on D-Vo at SD Straight Talk

Joel Rosenthal gives his endorsement of Dave Volk's candidacy for the Sioux Falls City Commission over at SD Straight Talk. (and Joel points out Dave's participation in the Mainstream Coalition as somewhat of a negative).

Dave is a good public speaker. He has a wealth of experience statewide in politics and government. He was State Treasurer. He made 2 congressional runs. Now he's running for Sioux Falls City Commission?

I don't want to say it's ignoble, but it certainly seems to be politics at a much lower level for Dave than you might expect. But that's ok. Joel does note it's been 18 years since Dave has been on the ballot. Once you have that fire in you, it does not extinguish easily.

I read the press release with interest, especially after it noted that he's been "teaching classes, including special education, at local elementary schools." I asked my wife about that one, since she's been involved in teaching, administering, or regulatin…

Now this is interesting...
A side and B side Districting

From the Aberdeen American News:
Split house districts may be proposed
Associated Press

PIERRE, S.D. - A subcommittee of the state Constitutional Revision Commission has decided tentatively that all legislative districts for House members be split in two.The proposal, which will be reviewed by the full commission when it meets again next spring, would establish two House districts within each state Senate district.Currently, each of the state's 35 legislative districts elects one senator and two at-large House members, except for a huge district in northwestern South Dakota. District 28 is split into two House districts.Mary McClure Bibby, a former seven-term Republican legislator and head of the subcommittee studying the legislative boundary-making process, says split House districts would be especially beneficial in sparsely populated areas of the state that now require very large districts. Often candidates from the larger towns in rural districts have the political edge …

Breaking News? Already Broken News?
Close Enough.
Lee Schoenbeck is not running again.

While Dave Kranz had announced it about a week ago without confirmation, the Webster Farmer and Reporter had it straight from the horses' mouth yesterday that State Senator Lee Schoenbeck is not going to run for the State Senate again next year.

Between Lee stepping down, and Senator Bogue being term limited out - the competition for Senate leadership in December/Jan 2007 is sure to wild and wooly!

Hats off to the snow removal crews

I might have a tendency to grouse about City Governments lately. Or at least those being somewhat obtuse.

But I need to separate out those who perform the often thankless work for these entities. In this instance, I have to give a big SDWC hats off to the snow removal workers for the Cities, Counties and State.

This storm was not the worst we've seen, but it was bad. Yet these guys have been out there trying to keep things clear when it was obvious that it wasn't letting up. As I'm listening to Tony Mangan on KCCR this AM, it was noted that in Pierre, crews have been out since 1am making an attempt to clear the roads.

They're making a dent, but it's quite obvious that they have an all day job ahead of them (and then some).

Keep up the good work. It's very much appreciated.

(Now, back to our regularly scheduled politics.)

Good Gosh! Now that's a snowstorm.

I was a trooper this AM and got up early, worked my way out of the snowdrift to get to work, and promptly found out that work was cancelled for the AM.


It did give me some time to play catch up, because I didn't dare go home. I had no place to park.

The announcement was just made that work is called off for the rest of the day, so I did trek back home to figure out a parking place within a block or so. And I'm back at my computer sitting in the middle of the world's messiest desk.

Supposedly the winds are going to continue to howl here in Pierre at 60 mph for quite some time, and then drop down to 20 mph by midnight. To put it mildly, it's a mess here.

Last night was slightly better, although the return trip to Pierre started out with fog, then rain, then rain mixed with fog. And then after Huron, it all turned to ice.

I think we can officially say that Winter has returned to South Dakota.

The Ultimate Campaign Tool

What is the ultimate campaign tool? It's a pretty interesting question - and one that's important to many people involved in campaigns. What is that thing that can transform a candidate from an also-ran into a serious contender or better yet, a champion?

No, it's not money. Lots of people might think it is. (What am I saying? Lots of people do). They think that if you spread enough cash around you are guaranteed victory.

I say "No. That's not correct."

The ultimate campaign tool? Plain old fashioned door-to-door. If there was a substitute that served the same need adequately, it would have been found. But it doesn't exist. In the years I've worked campaigns, there are two things candidates consistently hate to do. Raise money and go door-to-door. But door-to-door is the one of the two that candidates shouldn't do without.

Door-to-door is name identification. It's advertising. It's introducing issues. It's making a personal connection with …

Didn't notice that lesson your neighbor learned, did you?

From the Meade County Times (Read it all here):

Portions of a Dec. 12 Sturgis City Council meeting may be open to the public, according to Mayor Mark Zeigler. Initially, Zeigler set the Monday gathering as an “executive work session,” meaning it would be closed to the public and the press.

The 6 p.m. special meeting is scheduled, upstairs, at city hall. Zeigler did not say just what the meeting topics would be.

However, after the Black Hills Press told Zeigler that the newspaper asked the South Dakota Attorney General’s office for an opinion, the mayor said that parts of the meeting might be open to the public.This comes literally on the heels of Sturgis' neighbor, the Lead City Commission getting spanked by the Open Meetings Commission. Isn't anyone learning from these lessons?

It's kind of an interesting phenomena. The closer that the level of government is to the people, (i.e., local, versus state level) it seems that they are that much worse about letting the people they r…