Showing posts from August 13, 2006

More on little Jimmy's trip to the Iowa State Fair

Dear Diary:

"The other day, I went to the Iowa State Fair. The beef judging and the 4-H exhibits were cool. Except for that part where I beat on a car window and got cuffed and stuffed. Then I was sad."Well, that's a narrative, but it isn't exactly the narrative that Rapid City Mayor Jim Shaw gave to the Rapid City Journal about his recollection of the events of a couple of days ago. Scott Aust of the Rapid City Journal appears to have gotten stuck with that assignment as the Mayor gave his sugar coated narrative of what happened.
As he lay face down on the warm pavement, hands cuffed behind his back and blood seeping from a cut knee, Rapid City Mayor Jim Shaw wondered what the heck was happening. “It’s almost like being in a bad dream,” Shaw said during a Friday afternoon media briefing at city hall in which he explained the series of events on Aug. 11 that led to him being detained and ticketed by the Iowa State Fair Patrol for resisting arrest and disorderly co…

Ummm... Err..... OK. He's got me on that one. Napoli extends an offer of cooperation to the Dems.

I have to admit, I'm still trying to digest this story (along with my Taco Johns Lunch). State Senator Bill Napoli is reaching out to the Democratic candidate for Governor, Jack Billion, for support on a plan of his to put drunk drivers in a different facility than more hardened criminals.

Today the Rapid City Journal is all over Bill Napoli's overtures to the Democratic Candidate for Governor, Jack Billion :
State Sen. Bill Napoli proposed a new type of prison facility Thursday for nonviolent criminals struggling with drug and alcohol addiction. And in an unusual move for a conservative Republican who has criticized GOP moderates for blurring political philosophy, he sought Democratic support for his plan.

"If I have to go to the Democrats to get this done, I will," the Rapid City incumbent from District 35 said during a news conference attended by both Democratic and Republican political candidates.

Napoli said South Dakota has a "terrible" incarceration rate…

Mayors Gone Wild II - How do you get banned for life from a State Fair?

You know, there are moments like this where I really start to question our reality. First, one Mayor beats his wife. Next, another one (allegedly) assaults a man in front of his daughter, and then works on the man's sister. This week, we already had one Mayor busted for DUI, and today, reports are coming in that Jim Shaw, the Mayor of Rapid City, has now been banned for life from the Iowa State Fair:
The mayor of Rapid City, S.D., says he has been banned for life from the Iowa State Fair after being charged for disorderly conduct and resisting arrest. Jim Shaw, 59, says the trouble started last Friday night after complaining that a vehicle was barreling through a crowd of pedestrians inside the fair's gates. The mayor claims he approached the driver and was confronted by the Iowa State Fair Patrol."The next thing I know, he throws me to the ground, handcuffs me like I'm some escaped murderer, and I was carried to the substation," Shaw says.State fair officials,…

Brookings School District follwed it's alphabet tonight

I'm told that tonight, the Brookings School District passed resolutions against both Amendment D - the property tax amendment, and Amendment E.... Which one is that?

Oh yes, the one I spend at least 1/5 of my time railing on about. The Amendment which arose from people who are against a few things such as: government, taxes, the New World Order, water flouridation, marriage licenses, and a plethora of other things.

Yes, my friends led by Ron Branson, Bill Stegmeier and Bonnie Russell got shot down in a resolution by the Brookings School Board tonight. I'm told it came after the helpful and informative video produced and provided by the No-on-E people.

Also - here's a newstip for you that you haven't heard yet - apparently a wealthy Brookings businessman wants to do a "Denny Sanford" and make a charitable donation to the School District which will be valued in the MILLIONS before it's done.

It was publicly discussed in the meeting tonight, but I'll let t…

Thune dedicating Brookings GOP HQ

From the Brookings Register:
Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.) will be the guest of honor at the grand opening of the Brookings County GOP Office this coming Monday, Aug. 21.

The senator will preside at a 10:30 a.m. dedication ceremony at the party headquarters, located at 404 Fifth St. in downtown Brookings. Also in attendance will be local and state elected officials and candidates.

"We are honored to have Sen. Thune in Brookings to dedicate our county Republican campaign office," said Chairwoman Jackie Diedrich.Read it all here. I wish I could be there myself, but I'm back in Pierre working on my day job. But if you're in the area, stop by and give it a look.

At least this Mayor wasn't assaulting a woman

In a third installment of Mayors Gone Wild, it was announced that Mayor Larry Beesley of Brandon was just arrested for DUI, coming on of the heels of assault charges against the Onida Mayor and recent conviction of the Belle Fourche Mayor for domestic assault:
Brandon Mayor Larry Beesley was cited for driving under the influence and speeding late Tuesday night, Brandon police said.

Brandon Police Chief Phillip Youngdale said Beesley was stopped on Aspen Boulevard near McHardy Park Road in Brandon about 11 p.m. Tuesday.

Beesley was traveling in excess of 10 miles over the posted speed limit of 45 mph, Youngdale said, and his blood alcohol level was not known Wednesday.
and... "All I can really tell you right now is that I've advised my client not to make any public comments until we know more about the situation and see police reports and things of that nature," McGowan said. "However, he did want me to express his apologies to his family, friends and colleagues for any …

Update on the Jim Hubbard Funeral

From the Rapid City Journal Obituaries, some more information on the Jim Hubbard Funeral, for those who are interested in attending or sending a card:
James L. Hubbard
RAPID CITY - James L. Hubbard, 77, Rapid City, died Sunday, Aug. 13, 2006, at Rapid City Regional Hospital. Survivors include his wife, Janice Hubbard, Rapid City; two sons, Dennis Hubbard, Wasilla, Alaska, and Bradley Seagull, Mill Creek, Wash.; one daughter, Lindsay Pope, Montrose, Colo.; six grandchildren; two sisters, Phyllis Gannaway, Spokane, Wash., and Peggy Buchtel, Clay Center, Neb.; and one brother, Herbert Hubbard, Anchorage, Alaska.

Memorial services will be at 10 a.m. Monday, Aug. 21, at Westminster Presbyterian Church in Rapid City, with the Rev. Bob Savot officiating. Private family burial will be at a later date at Pine Lawn Memorial Park Cemetery in Rapid City. Memorials have been established for Hospice House and Big Bend Presbyterian Church. Osheim-Catron Funeral Home of Rapid City is in charge of…

Head East, young man. Bob Sahr heading to Eastern SD to take a job with East River Electrical Coop

According to an Associated Press Report tonight (as printed on the Rapid City Journal website), Public Utilities Commissioner Bob Sahr is taking a job with one of the Rural Electric Providers:
Bob Sahr, the chairman of the South Dakota Public Utilities Commission, has taken a job as general counsel for East River Electric Power Cooperative. He's been on the PUC since 2001 but decided not to seek re-election in November because of what he called untrue rumors being spread about him.

Sahr said he could not run a political campaign at the same time he fought the unspecified rumors.Read it all here.

Guess who's coming to my city

At a press conference today, Governor Rounds announced that Country Music stars "Big and Rich" are coming to Pierre to perform their song "8th of November" at the SD Vietnam War Memorial Dedication:
Big Kenny and John Rich, better known as the country music sensation “Big and Rich,” joined Gov. Mike Rounds today to announce they will be performing their new single, 8th of November, during the Vietnam War Memorial Dedication.

“We are honored to have Big and Rich come to Pierre and perform a truly special song which recognizes the service and sacrifice of our Vietnam Veterans,” said Gov. Rounds on the announcement.

The song was written to honor Niles Harris, a South Dakota Vietnam veteran, who currently lives in Deadwood. Niles was a 19 year old private in the 173rd Airborne Brigade who was shot in a firefight on November 8, 1965; during his first tour of Vietnam. Every year on Nov. 8, Niles drinks a toast to honor those lost that day, as well as all who serve in the US…

While the Argus shows the debate between the candidates on the Death Penalty, KELO has an interesting article on Ol' Sparky

Today in the Sioux Falls Argus Leader, the candidates for Governor debate the merits of the Death Penalty from Mitchell as Governor Rounds contemplates the application of it for the first time in decades:
Rounds said he has laid out the process he will use to review the case of Elijah Page, 24, convicted and sentenced to death in the 2001 slaying of 19-year-old Chester Poage near Spearfish. A judge earlier this week granted Page's request to stop appeals, paving the way for execution perhaps later this month. As governor, Rounds has broad powers to issue pardons or to commute sentences.


Democrat candidate Jack Billion of Sioux Falls said Tuesday the Page case and every other death-penalty case must to be judged on its own merits.


"I'm not convinced it's an absolute necessity in South Dakota," he said. "I'm a little bit ambivalent about the death penalty right now, as a deterrent, as an economically feasible punishment."


Willis said the …

Help wanted at the SDGOP

I had a note from one of the County Chairmen the other day that the State GOP is supposedly looking for a few good campaign workers for the Sioux Falls office. I tried to find it on the GOP website to link to the listings, but the career opportunities link isn't up.

So, just in case someone wants some fun and adventure on the campaign trail and hasn't seen the listing elsewhere, here's what I'm told the State GOP is seeking staffers for:
The South Dakota Republican Party is accepting applications for a Regional Director to handle voter registration, identification and turn-out operations in the Sioux Falls area. The regional director would be responsible for all voter contact and Get-Out-The-Vote efforts for Sioux Falls and the Sioux Empire area. The director would be in charge of maintaining a regional office in Sioux Falls with supervision of up to 4 additional staff members. To apply, please send a cover letter and resume to Executive Director, PO Box…

From the outside looking in: MPR covers the first SD Gubernatorial Debate

Minnesota Public Radio has an interesting and in-depth take on the first big debate between Governor Rounds, Jack Billion, and the other guys who are running for South Dakota Governor:
Democrat Jack Billion says if he's elected he'll stand behind every bill he signs into law. "I'll sign it because I think it's best for the people of the state of South Dakota and has to become law. Not because I want to see us spending millions of dollars of taxpayer money possibly defending an unconstitutional law," says Billion. Governor Mike Rounds ignored most of the jabs directed at him. The Republican incumbent had 60 percent support in the most recent polling. He told the gathered farmers that rural economic development in South Dakota is heading in the right direction. He says ethanol production is one example. There are currently 11 ethanol plants in the state. Five of those are expanding and five more are in different stages of being built. "Every sing…

There are just some things out there on the Internet that you can't un-see

This isn't Photoshop. It's real.

From commerical photographer Chris Buck, (whose photography is quite good, BTW). I believe this is from a spread he did of McGovern for Newsweek. You can see his website here at

Cities, Counties and School Boards band together to protect elected officials against Amendment E

The No-on-E campaign announced today that dozens of Cities, School Boards, and Counties have all passed amendments urging residents to defeat Amendment E beause of the danger it poses in making those entities liable for persecution, prosecution, and frivolous lawsuits. Just because someone might not like a decision they made:
News Release: South Dakota Local Governments Overwhelmingly Oppose Constitutional Amendment E
Tue, Aug 15th 2006

Local government officials in South Dakota overwhelmingly oppose passage of Constitutional Amendment E. As of Aug. 15 official resolutions opposing Amendment E had been passed by 56 cities, 31 counties and 20 school boards and more are passing resolutions all the time. Currently, not one city council, county commission or school board has come out in favor of the amendment.

“Local government officials in South Dakota are voicing their opposition to the amendment because it endangers far more than just judges,” said No on E spokesperson Dianna Miller. “If …

Amendment D says Yes to the Brown County Fair

From a press release issued today:
The Stabilize Taxes On Property (S.T.O.P.) group who gathered over 52,000 signatures statewide to place Amendment D, the property tax assessment cap on the November 7th Ballot, will have an informational booth at the Brown County Fair in Aberdeen through this weekend.

Chief of Staff David Phelps, will be at the fair all week to answer questions, hand out literature, and volunteers will be distributing VOTE 'YES' ON AMENDMENT D BUMPER STICKERS. The booth number is #70, which is located in the Holum Expo Building right behind the Hockey Building. Look for the large banner hanging in the booth.

The website for Amendment D is To reach us by email: By phone: 605-341-2370 This release also comes on the heels of another press release issued today on Amendment D from State Senator Bill Napoli:
State Senator Bill Napoli says, "South Dakota Ag producers now face HUGE ASSESSMENT INCREASES EVEN WITH THE 150% Ru…

Another Replacement Candidate. But the big question is, can he serve?

In the prior article, I had commented that before I could complete the next one I was working on (regarding Republican Senate Candidate Jean Hunhoff’s new opponent), I needed to look at an old post I did first.

Why? Because it could directly affect whether Jean’s opponent could serve or not. If he's going to do what he says he is, I tend to think he can’t – and it’s a valid issue that Hunhoff and the State GOP should pursue.

“What?” You might be asking yourself. “If the guy has been filed as the replacement on the ballot, why couldn’t he serve?” Because from statements he’s made, it sounds like he has no intention of giving up his current office, placing him in a situation that is going to force him to choose one or another.

Democrat Curt Bernard is the Mayor of Yankton. And he’s also now a candidate for the legislature. But, for some odd reason, he thinks he has legal authorization to possibly serve in both offices. From the announcement in the Yankton Daily Press and Dakotan:

One of the replacements

I think I've been remiss in mentioning one of the GOP's ballot replacements for somone who decided not to give it a go. If you check out the ballot for District 22, you'll be as suprised as I was a week or so ago to see that long time lobbyist for Northwestern Energy, Warren Lotsberg, is now a candidate.

The replacement happened without a lot of fanfare, as I would have thought the GOP would have been doing high fives on this one, going "in your face, dems!" Against a notable Dem House slate such as Dale Hargens and Quinten Berg, Warren represents a solid chance to make sure one of those seats goes "R."

I've got another post I'll be doing on the new opponent against Hunhoff in Yankton, but I need to look at an old post I did first. Stay tuned.

If you think you have troubles... Think of what the AG and SOS have to deal with this week

This evening has been kind of a bummer. At about the end of the workday, I got a call from my wife notifying me that she was involved in a fender bender. Rats. Insurance, car repairs, and all the pain-in-the-rear things that go with it. That, and I have to try to make it better from a distance of 200 miles. (Don't worry, she's ok.) "Why me? Now I'm worrying about my absent family."

It started an admittedly self-indulgent personal episode of "look at all my troubles." I tried to lament to one of my friends about it, asking him "do you ever have one of those days when you feel like you're living under a dark cloud?"

Of course, I failed to take into account that I'm saying this to a newly minted divorcee, who just yesterday was informing me that his ex just got married out in Sturgis about a whole month after the divorce was finalized.

His reply? "You're really asking the wrong person that."

Uh, yeah. He's completely correct…

As if the abortion issue wasn't enough, coming up in this month's political debates - Capital Punishment has an interesting article on the request of Elijah Page to forgo any further appeals and to proceed forward with the death penalty. Why is it interesting? Well, for the fact that South Dakota hasn't put anyone to death in decades, we've really managed to avoid the question. Until now.

And the Catholic Church doesn't sound like it's going to take a seat during this debate:
A spokesperson for the Catholic bishops says death penalty cases are always cause for concern because they go against what the church teaches about respecting life. So before Elijah Page is put to death, expect to hear more about why religious leaders think he should be spared.

Elijah Page could become the first person put to death in South Dakota since 1947, which is something the Catholic church is anxious to prevent.

Sr. Mary Ann Walsh, spokesperson for the U.S. Bishops says, "It's like a step backwards in time."

Church leaders say a justice system that allows for the taking of…

High praise indeed. She hates me. I think she really, really hates me.

I was wondering what to write over the noon hour when I had a tip from a fellow blogger that I've moved up again on the Amendment E hate list.

I had been running behind fellow Amendment E blogger Tim Gebhart on the list of amendment E enemies for some time as a result of his thoughtful and well written dissections of the incredibly bad ballot measure. But recently I seem to have taken a leap ahead of him on Bonnie Russell's naughty list. (Guess that means I don't get a present this year!)

Get a load of this tirade which made me giggle in masochistic glee:
A word about South Dakota bloggers, two of whom appear ethicially challenged. One boring lawyer when telephoned and questioned about inaccurate reports said, "I am not a journalist" (which absolves him from...?) Ask blogging opponents of Amendment E which PACs created either from State Bar meetings or big business (funding a couple of websites) which organization pays for their blogging product. Ask Pat Powers why …

Mythical creatures in today's RCJ

Headline in today's Rapid City Journal:

Tech stomps Bigfoot rumor
The South Dakota School of Mines & Technology does not have Bigfoot. And the Rapid City school issued a news release last week to emphasize the point. “I’ve done some checking, and we have no Bigfoot,” Breanna Bishop, Tech’s public-information coordinator, said.

Rumors have circulated on the Internet that the elusive creature known as Bigfoot was killed on Pine Ridge Indian Reservation and then was taken to the Rapid City school for further inspection.In a related stories today, the Rapid City Journal also quashed rumors of the existence of the easter bunny, the chupacabra, and a full slate of Democratic Constitutional Candidates.

Some things are just too incredible to believe in.

Interesting article on the SD Electorate this AM in the Argus

The Argus Leader has a very interesting article on the fickle SD electorate this morning written by Jon Walker:
There's something for everyone to like, dislike and wonder about.

The 2006 election is 12 weeks away, and South Dakota voters are proving again that they won't be boxed in. An opinion poll gives midsummer signs that incumbents are safe, the State Fair is safe, and that abortion will remain legal. The same poll leaves enough hope for some now cast as underdogs that they can make up lost ground by Nov. 7.

Between the lines, though, are the unseen forces that puzzle those trying to predict an election in August or find comfort in patterns about South Dakota politics. Voters themselves, discussing results of a Mason-Dixon poll July 24-26 of 800 South Dakotans, see conflicted thinking not only in this year's ballot issues but also in how they'll make their own choices.


"South Dakota is one of the most conservative states in the union politically and cultura…

A terrible loss for the GOP

I just heard that Republican Activist Jim Hubbard passed away today. Jim has been a long time carrier of water for the elephant and it's a terrible loss for the Black Hills and South Dakota Republicans.

Our condolences to his wife Jan, and as I hear more information, I'll post an update.

Arrrrgh! Howard Dean is coming to Rapid City

As reported in today's Rapid City Journal, Howard Dean is coming to Rapid City to talk about Tribal issues and help the local Dems.:
Howard Dean, the outspoken and controversial chairman of the Democratic National Committee, will stop in Rapid City Wednesday to meet with American Indian leaders and local Democrats. State Democratic Party Chairwoman Judy Olson Duhamel of Rapid City said Saturday that Dean is coming to western South Dakota to learn more about tribal issues and to energize party faithful heading toward the November general election.

“I’m just very excited that we’re able to bring Howard Dean to Rapid City and to South Dakota,” Olson Duhamel said Saturday. “He’s the kind of guy who infuses energy and optimism into any crowd. We felt it’s really a privilege to have him coming here.”

Olson Duhamel said Dean is committed to developing a better understanding of problems facing American Indians in South Dakota. That is an important part of his visit, she said.

Dean’s visit…

Good to see that the Argus is hanging out at the deli counter with us bloggers.

Had I mentioned before that Randall Beck hates the Governor?

We all know he thinks bloggers are worthless pieces of garbage, but it seems there's nothing that gets Randall off like a fire and brimstone sermon against Mike Rounds.

In case you don't remember, I mentioned it here, and here with regards to the editorials that he's written here, here, here, here, and here related to the topic, and several other times I'm not going to bother citing. It starts to bring into question whether or not the Argus' publisher is legitimately questioning items in the public view.... or if he just plain hates the Governor's guts.

In his latest tirade against our state's chief executive he tries to take yet another shot at the gov because of the story that appeared this weekend about two of the Governor's brothers opening up a distillery:
What started as a bill last January to regulate liquor sales around Bear Butte State Park magically morphed, under the shrewd direction o…