Showing posts from May 7, 2006

After seeing this ad, I'd tend to agree with your uncle.

I saw this ad, and after reading the first sentence I said "Oh my god."

Not only is this a bad ad, it's telling everyone in town that his uncle thinks he's an idiot. Way to win an election Steve. Not only are you running yourself down, but you spent money to do it.

Here's a hint. Take everything between 2006 and the disclaimer and erase it. Then run THAT ad, not this one. And hope to God that not every voter in the primary read the Winner newspaper this week.

Are are paid petition circulators bad for the system?

The Argus has an article today on Senators Dick Kelly's and B.J. Nesselfuf 's thoughts on paid petition circulators:
A trend toward paid petition circulators has some legislators worried that South Dakota campaign-finance reports fail to tell citizens who is spending money to put issues on their ballots.

With almost a dozen issues tacked on to this November's ballot, most of which were added by petition, legislators see cause for concern.
Sen. Dick Kelly, R-Sioux Falls, said that he senses there's a trend toward more paid signature collectors. He doesn't object to that, but he wants the public to know what it costs and who pays the bill.
"I don't want to make it tougher to get things on the ballot, but I think we have a right to know who is paying for it," Kelly said. "We don't know that right now."

Sen. Ben Nesselhuf, D-Vermillion, agrees but thinks the Legislature should consider a full package of changes in political reporting requirements…

Did anyone catch that we have ANOTHER ballot measure circulating

From the Secretary of State's website:
Referred law: An Act to provide for the mandatory withdrawal of blood or other bodily substances subsequent to arrest for driving while under influence. View full text of petitionThis measure is being circulated by a Kent Hazelrigg, a House mover from Rapid City. Since I'm not familiar with the name from political circles, I'm sure there's a pretty good story out there on why he's doing it.

Stay tuned.

You are going to die on that thing

From KELOland News:
While a four-wheeled ATV gets better gas mileage than a truck, the off-road vehicles get about the same mileage as a small car. As gas prices go up, ATV's are being used as an everyday alternative to get around.

Aberdeen Police Sergeant Jay Tobin says, "The numbers have gone up some. I think as gas prices go up people are using them more year round than they used to use them for recreation. Now they are using them more for everyday."

In South Dakota, it is legal to ride ATV's on any road except for interstates. But because the vehicles are built for off-road travel, they need to be modified for the street.Am I the only one who thinks people who drive those things around busy city streets and intra-city highways are insane?

The Aha moment for JAIL-4-Judges

If you’re a incurable political hack like me, sometimes you’ll sit there and listen to politicians over and over and over. And every once in a while, you’ll have what I call “an aha moment” where the politician admits something that you know they’ve been doing all along, but would never admit to.

And just like in the comic books, you go “Aha – I have you now!”

And I just had that moment with the South Dakota Judicial Accountability Movement.

For months now, they’ve been saying ad nauseum that J.A.I.L. “only applies to judges, it only applies to judges.” Despite the absolute fact that the measure specifies that it applies to anyone who has judicial immunity. When that’s brought up, they pooh pooh it as hysterics, and that it’s only intended for judges.

Maybe they should have informed their press secretary of that. Because I just listened to an interview with him as recently conducted on the Arizona based Liberty Watch radio show “America – Armed and Free” where on 4/16/06, not only does Ja…

Mainstream Moderates seeking middling people

The Mainstream Coalition is in the middle of a membership/fundraising drive, sending out letters across South Dakota.

It talks about how "the rhetoric of divisiveness is escalating. The threat of polarization is increasing. And they want to offer information to as many of our fellow citizens as we can how to resist the imposition of ideologies upon us."

What do we need them for? I thought that's why L. Ron Hubbard created Scientology.

Anyway, the letter also talks about how the group "will promote and preserve traditional American values.." Curiously enough, without exception, the Republican legislators who founded the organization all voted against placing Constitutional Amendment C on the ballot (regarding the definition of marriage) which was intended to preserve a tradition that most South Dakotans share a similar opinion on.

While they (The MAINstreamers) are trying to tap into the undercurrents of the abortion issue for their membership drive, many South Dako…

Got a copy of the Fuller Ad. The start of The War of the Words?

Thank you West River reader! I had a reader send me a copy of the ad I'd been mentioning from the 7th Circuit race, and yes indeed, Judge Fuller is invoking the Judicial Qualifications commission not once, but twice.

In fact, it looks like at some point he's actually been a member of the panel. So, even more suprising that he'd promote a questionable statement that he was "recommended by them."

Yes, by way of disclosure, Lance is a friend of mine. But that's besides the point. I find all of this interesting in that it represents some of the first South Dakota advertising after the rules on Judicial races have been re-written.

Will judicial candidates engage in this sort of puffery that can be standard fare in a political environment, or will they hold themselves to a higher standard than the politicians they tend to criticize.

This ad provoked a response which questioned how the incumbent was conducting himself, so it could have done more harm than good. Or at …


From the Rapid City Journal:
The Federal Election Commission has fined the South Dakota Republican Party for failing to file a November 2005 financial report on time. The commission said in a news release Tuesday that the party was fined $1,000.

Max Wetz, a spokesman for the party, said Tuesday that he did not feel comfortable talking about the fine. He declined to elaborate on why the report was late.
I'd point it out if there was a story on the "D's" doing it, so rather than being hypocritical, here it is. Mea Culpa.

A challenge and a response
The why I do the things I do

Under one of the posts of a day or so ago, that ever persistent "Anonymous" decided to pick up a stick and poke at me:
So PP, you are supporting Lance and Elli and Brock...we get it. The fact that this blog and your slants often look like advertising if I thought any of the aforementioned were bright enough to direct it. You might be though Pat which brings up a point.Will you blog for cash? Your writing should ask someone in the non Elli, Brock, Lance camp to ask the question.Come on, Mr. Gannon (only straight, red headed w/kids). Are you getting paid for this on some issues? By the line? Or does your friendships and animosity towards other drive your work? Just curious.
I think I've written about my motivations a time a time or two in the past. But since then, I've added 5,000 monthly readers. So it might be a good thing to clarify and refresh everyone, including Anonymous, who looked to be writing from the Midco network at 24.111.176.# why I do that voodoo that I d…

Independents day

In today’s Aberdeen American News, Columnist Ruth Wood gets some free press by announcing that she’s running as an independent in the District 23 House Race:
When I paid our taxes at the treasurer's office I looked next door at the auditor's office. I thought, "What would it hurt to at least ask some questions?" Even though I had a very bad case of laryngitis, I asked some questions ... and I walked out with a petition.

I was told I would learn a lot in the process. Immediately I learned that while the people who circulated a petition for party nominations in the primary only had to get 50 signatures, I would have to get 1 percent of the people who voted for governor in my district in 2002. As an Independent, however, I could get any registered voter to sign. Still 107 signatures sounded like an impossible task.

I wavered daily as I moved through the process of collecting signatures. Do I really want to be a candidate? I don't have anything against the two incumbent…

Quotes of the day:

From the April 24th edition of the LA Times:
"Branson is a publicity hound who is bad for the campaign because he comes across as "a clown."
- Bonnie Russell on South Dakota JAIL Amendment Author Ron Branson

"Russell is trying to "appease" and "play footsies" with people in South Dakota opposed to the amendment and is also trying to hide the fact that he is from California."
- Ron Branson on South Dakota JAIL Amendment Publicist Bonnie Russell
How about some comments from a South Dakotan on this? (or isn't there a prepared statement ready?)

Now, was that so tough to do? Sioux Falls School District wakes up and smells the coffee when 100 people flood the room.

From the Argus Leader:
Sioux Falls School Board members voted unanimously Monday to allow students with major medical problems to participate in graduation ceremonies, even if they haven’t completed the required credits.

That decision replaced a recommendation from a policy committee that would have recognized those students but not allowed them to walk across the stage and receive an unsigned diploma.

The decision emerged after an emotional discussion of an audience of at least 100 people, most of whom said the current policy needed to change.Why was that so tough? I won't beat the point into the ground, but they could have solved this a week or two ago by just giving the kids a break. But, better late than never. Glad to see that a public board can see reason.

Especially when faced with 100 adamant parents.

Why do South Dakotans need to stop J.A.I.L. in it's tracks? Look at what could be coming next

In an article from Nevada in the North Lake Tahoe Bonanza, authorities are discussing the need to resolve some concerns over delays (which don't exist in SD) from their version of the Judicial Qualifications Commission because they are possibly facing a Judicial Accountability Movement:
Douglas County District Judge Michael Gibbons, president of the Nevada District Judges Association, said he supports the discipline commission and questioned whether a rule change by that panel - rather than legislation - might resolve any problems stemming from delays.

While Gibbons urged caution in tinkering with the judicial discipline process, he also said a perception of excessive delays could figure in efforts to set up alternatives such as one proposed for the November ballot in South Dakota.

That plan, called Judicial Accountability Initiative Law or J.A.I.L, would create a special panel of citizens who could sanction judges by levying fines or even removing them from office.

Representatives of… looks like it's just about open for business

I notice the NO-ON-E website has a banner page up. I'm waiting to see what the whole thing looks like. It appears it's going to closely follow the video, as well as possibly having it available for on-line viewing.

In the meantime, did anyone attend the JAIL event in Gregory this weekend? I'd love to hear a report.

Former Legislator weighs in on Schwiesow/Adelstein Race

From Saturday's Rapid City Journal:
Best track record

As a right to life supporter and also knowing both Elli Schwiesow and Stan Adelstein, I find them both to be very fine people. However, when we send people to the state Senate, where the system is both complicated and serious, send the one who has and will be more than a one or two issue senator with a personal agenda.

With hundreds of bills presented each year, Pennington County needs people who can build relationships with others in the legislative body to get things done.

Stan has run several large businesses successfully and is fiscally conservative. Stan has served in the House of Representatives and is past chairman of the Rapid City Chamber of Commerce, plus numerous other committees and organizations in our state.

When you send someone to Pierre, doesn't it make sense to send someone with the best track record and the most experience? I would encourage voters of District 32 to vote for Stan Adelstein and send him back t…

Rapid City Journal Ads - Advertising from where the primaries are the hottest

I just rolled back into town, and wanted to crank a post out before I worked on a project and went to bed. So, I'm going to rely on others for content.

In this instance, I caught several of the ads that are running lately in the Rapid City Journal. A couple are good, basic ads. A couple are so, so. And yet a couple others leave me scratching my head.

In this ad, Lance Russell, who is running for 7th Circuit Judge in the Primary is taking on one of his opponents, Pete Fuller, over comments that he made about being endorsed by the Judicial Qualifications Commission. As opposed to being a name id ad, it's issue oriented. It doesn't get too wordy, although I'd avoid any more text. And most importantly, it lists the name and office.

Fuller is advertising quite a bit as well, and this ad appeared this weekend (Avoiding the one that Lance is contesting).

It's not bad, although I would have made office more prominent. I did catch that one-time U.S. Senate Candidate Ron Schmidt…