Showing posts from February 18, 2007

Mercer: Organ Harvesters can't be in line ahead of spouse

In the pecking order over my future carcass, pursuant to SB 197, it looks like Bob Mercer came to a similar conclusion as I did, according to this morning's Pierre Capitol Journal.

In an interview with Representative David Lust, Lust notes that the key phrase in the pecking order is "Individual," which isn't defined in the statute. Lust contends that "the common definition of an individual is a human being."

Which means that organizations are not ahead of my wife in determining organ donation if I don't make a decision.

Now if she'd only agree not to sell me to the circus.

How come......

Why does every other town in the state make note of who they're interviewing for School Superintendent positions, but in Pierre, they don't disclose it?

(or at least the media doesn't report it.)

Update - I'm finding out - according to KCCR News that it wasn't a matter that they weren't asked. It is a matter of the Pierre School Board refusing to release the information:
Lingle says all five are men. Three are from South Dakota, one from Nebraska and the other from Kansas. Lingle says none of the three South Dakotan finalists are from the Pierre area.

Each of the finalists will be in Pierre one day next week to meet with four groups consisting of administrators, district staff employees, community residents and school board. One finalist will be interviewed each day next week, Monday through Friday.

The names of the five finalists are not being released until the day each of them comes to Pierre. Lingle says that is out of respect for the fact that the candid…

This one will leave you silent. More on the Clinton/Obama South Dakota Connection

You might have noted that I just wrote on the real reason why David Geffen switched over to Barack Obama from being a Hillary Clinton supporter and it involving Leonard Peltier:
Check out this ABC news report as to the real reason why David Geffen switched over to Barack Obama from being a Hillary Clinton supporter - it's all about Leonard Peltier, who many years ago in South Dakota murdered two FBI agents in cold blood:
The sharpest political snipes among the Democratic 2008 presidential hopefuls can be traced beyond media mogul David Geffen to a jailed man named Leonard Peltier. Peltier, convicted of murder in 1977 for allegedly gunning down a pair of FBI agents in a shootout at South Dakota's Pine Ridge Indian Reservation, was one of the primary reasons cited by media mogul David Geffen for jumping ship from New York Sen. Hillary Clinton's campaign in favor of fellow Democratic Sen. Barack Obama of Illinois. Read it all here.
Actually, it's also my understanding that f…

In rebuttal of my criticism on the update of the uniform Anatomical Gift act.... Okay, I'll admit it. The prior criticism might have been wrong.

After reviewing the proposed changes in the Uniform Anatomical Gift Act and other papers on it, this one presents me with a quandary.

Yes, admittedly, I was harsh as heck on it. But don't construe that to mean that I don't support organ donations. It was the assertion that, absent notification of permission or refusal, someone might be able to intervene ahead of family members. That's what had my crank going.

As pointed out to me by a few people.... (Okay, maybe a dozen or so, including transplant recipients) taking away the rights of family members has never been the intent, and they pointed out where I could go look to confirm what they had to say. So I did.

And, I have to admit that, yes, maybe I jumped to conclusions on Senate Bill 197.

Don't take this to mean I bend easily. In fact, I'll often cling to my beliefs unto death no matter how many people disagree with me (just ask me about my opinions on the global warming myth or why we need to kill all the mountai…

Hughes County Lincoln Day Dinner

Just a few photos from the Hughes County Lincoln Day Dinner:

After the county honored Don Rounds, as the Hughes County volunteer of the year, Matt Michels, the speaker of the night got up and gave a speech about liberty and Republican values.

He also had us on the edge our seats with this one. (mp3 file)

I was fortunate to sit at a table with longtime lobbyist *the* Jeremiah Murphy. He introduced himself, as did I. And upon hearing my name he apologized, as he noted "I should have introduced myself as anonymous." (good one.)

Also at the table was his son and fellow lobbyist Jerry Murphy, Representative Cooper Garnos, and equally notable Republicans in the form of Brown County GOP Chairman Isaac Latterell, (SDWC reader and) GOP activist Aaron Lorenzen, and South Dakota Right to Life Lobbyist Jenna Haeger:

I'll have more on the Michels speech as I get through it (probably early next week) and reduce the file size.

But let it be said that a good time was had by all.

Clinton/Obama feud comes down to a South Dakota Connection

Check out this ABC news report as to the real reason why David Geffen switched over to Barack Obama from being a Hillary Clinton supporter - it's all about Leonard Peltier, who many years ago in South Dakota murdered two FBI agents in cold blood:
The sharpest political snipes among the Democratic 2008 presidential hopefuls can be traced beyond media mogul David Geffen to a jailed man named Leonard Peltier. Peltier, convicted of murder in 1977 for allegedly gunning down a pair of FBI agents in a shootout at South Dakota's Pine Ridge Indian Reservation, was one of the primary reasons cited by media mogul David Geffen for jumping ship from New York Sen. Hillary Clinton's campaign in favor of fellow Democratic Sen. Barack Obama of Illinois. and...In 2001, Geffen, a key Democratic supporter with deep pockets and influence among Hollywood's elite, was one of many high-profile backers of a clemency campaign for Peltier, an American Indian activist, during the final days of Bi…

Just a teaser on the Rapid City Mayoral race.

Here's a teaser to start off your evening on the Rapid City Mayoral race. From a whois search at (my internet registry of choice - the first and best)
WHOIS Record For

Mike Schumacher
3330 Palm Drive #5
Rapid City, South Dakota 57701
United States

Registered through:, Inc. (
Created on: 02-Jul-06
Expires on: 03-Jul-08
Last Updated on: 02-Jul-06

Administrative Contact:
Schumacher, Mike
3330 Palm Drive #5
Rapid City, South Dakota 57701
United States
(605) 716-4065

Technical Contact:
Schumacher, Mike
3330 Palm Drive #5
Rapid City, South Dakota 57701
United States
(605) 716-4065

Domain servers in listed order:
PARK30.SECURESERVER.NETWith the act of registering this website in July of 2006, could this mean that Rapid City Common Council Alderman Mike Schumacher is behind an effort to run Alderman Sam Kooiker for Mayor of Rapid Ci…

Senate Transportation passes out another nanny-state bill.

This morning, Senate Transportation passed Representative Willadsen's ridiculous Republican counterpart to Democratic Representative Ahler's equally stupid car seat bill.

House Bill 1189 is yet another attempt to let us all know what's best for us, because apparently we're all too stupid to know anything without government intervention. As I've previously noted, the bill required kids older than 5, but younger than 8 to be in booster seats, despite the fact that it's yet another government mandate of telling people how they need to live their lives.

And, the Senate committee passed the measure out 5 to 2.

Gant, Garnos, Sutton, McCracken and Gary Hanson all voted to perpetuate the nanny state, with Napoli and Kloucek properly voting no.

Rapid City Mayor's Race set to bust wide open

I'm hearing rumors in the Rapid City mayor's race that I'm trying to run down right now. If they hold true - it could mean a hard fought, and somewhat controversial race. Stay tuned for details as they develop.

KCCR: Jarrod Johnson updates S&L Website

From KCCR Radio News:
The Office of School and Public Lands, under new commissioner Jarrod Johnson, has launched (a) new website. Johnson says the website will include information on the office, details on upcoming land auctions, guidelines for hunting on public land and other details.Read it all here and go visit Jarrod's new website at:

Overheard at dinner

"The red button is my favorite one."
- Representative Betty Olson, referring to her preferred voting button.

In a way, it's too bad the local AP thinks the way that they do.

Under my prior post regarding the note I got from Tena Haraldson, the South Dakota bureau chief for the associated press,
Dear PP:

It has come to our attention that you have an AP photo of John Thune posted on your blog, along with text from at least one AP story.

Please be advised that this material is protected by copyright and may not be repurposed. Please take these items down from your site and refrain from posting AP material in the future.

Tena Haraldson Chief of Bureau I had a comment from a North Dakota blogger, Dustin Gawrylow, who runs about 4 blogs including North Dakota legislative watch. He wrote that "he too got the e-mail." I'm curious as to if any other area bloggers might have gotten this note which was also copied to the Associated Press' intellectual property guy, George Galt. (If you did, e-mail me here)

As I had written, when I posted the photo from the originating website, there was no indication that it originated from the Associated Press…

Did this one just go by everyone? Organ harvesting bill blows through State Senate

I was minding my own affairs when I caught the Mercer article in the Aberdeen American News (Please go on-line Bob... We bloggers need you there!) titled "Body-Part Donation Process altered. I had heard something in passing about the bill, not giving it a second thought. Until I read this article, and found my jaw dropping.

What did Bob have to say about it?
"Senators voted 35-0 Tuesday for legislation that gives harvesters - formally known as procurement organizations - first priority in the process of deciding whether a person's body parts should be donated."

"Harvesters would move ahead of the spouse, children, siblings or other family members."

"The measure, SB 197, now heads to the House of Representatives for consideration."


"Currently, the spouse is first on the list of who decides whether donations should occur..."


"The proposed law would allow a procurement organization to override a family member's wishes..&quo…

Uh oh. The AP is getting snippy with bloggers.

I just got a terse note from Tena Haraldson, the AP bureau chief, that I have (had) an AP Thune photo on my blog, along with other AP material that needed to be removed.

Of course, I dumped the photo, (which I got from another blog, not realizing it was AP) but that brings into question the fair use laws, and how much (or how little) can be used with editorial content added as is my understanding of "fair use."

I'll have to do a little legal research on this one.

Abortion bill is down for the moment

The Argus is reporting this morning that the abortion ban - HB 1293 - went down in Senate State Affairs:
An abortion ban with limited exceptions died in the Senate State Affairs Committee this morning on an 8-1 vote.

The committee’s action on the bill, which had passed the House, wasn’t unexpected and didn’t necessarily signal that the measure was dead. Supporters believe they have enough votes to order the committee to send the bill to the floor, and they think they may have the 18 votes necessary to pass the measure if they can get it to the floor.

The move to force a bill out of committee, called a 'smoke out' in the South Dakota Legislature, require 12 votes in the Senate.

A year ago lawmakers passed an abortion ban that made an exception only to save the life of a pregnant woman. This year’s bill adds exceptions for rape, incest and the health of the pregnant woman.


Republican Sen. Gene Abdallah of Sioux Falls said the issue will keep coming back.Read it all here.


That's an interesting headline.

I clipped this one off of the Argus website because that's easily the most lurid headline I've seen on this story. And of more concern, why is Senator Johnson's staff coming off as a little paranoid about this?

Except for shortly after the story broke, it's not like there were throngs of people waiting outside of his hospital room trying to get a photo of him like he was Anna Nicole Smith or something. Although, spokeswoman Julianne Fischer might disagree:
“When he first went into the hospital, there were cameras camped outside our office in D.C. and two of the three offices in the state and outside of the hospital for days on end,” Johnson’s spokeswoman Julianne Fisher said. “It was very intense.

“The family is trying to release as much information as they can, but they want him to focus on getting better and not feel self-conscious.”


Although that speculation has ceased and it now seems apparent that Johnson could serve out the remaining two years of his term, in…

Just like a social disease, the Pennington County Commission is having trouble getting rid of Delores Coffing

I was having dinner last night with one of the Pennington County Commissioners and several legislators, and he brought up the fact that former commissioner Delores Coffing had shown up at the County Commission meeting asking about a couple of issues that the former commission had worked on.

Lo and behold, the Rapid City Journal has a story on it today:
On other matters, Coffing asked what happened to two legislative efforts that the previous commission had advocated pursing: a new tax on alcohol that would help counties pay for the costs associated with alcohol abuse, and a new tax on billboards.

Coffing said billboard companies should have to pay taxes on their giant signs, just like a homeowner has to pay taxes on his home.

“An article in the paper said (billboards) range from $300,000 to $500,000 each. You need a building permit to put them up. They are a structure, but they’re not taxed. These huge signs and the land they sit on are not taxable,” she said.

Ron Buskerud, administrative …

Tan Ban goes down in crushing 10-24 vote

Senate Bill 208, otherwise referred to here as the Tan Ban (a moniker I coined that I've noticed has been picked up by at least one newspaper), went down today with hardly a whimper on a crushing 10-24 vote.

Al Hoerth and Sandy Jerstad testified in favor of the bill, as did Tom Katus (I think... the sound wasn't very clear), but it was absolutely slammed by testimony from Senators Ed Olson and Jason Gant.

I don't think Hoerth's case was helped when he testified that the enforcement burden would be placed on business owners and states' attorneys.

My favorite was the questioning from Jean Hunhoff who asked if the permission note from th parent had to be signed in the businesses' presence. Al Hoerth sheepishly answered "no" as Hunhoff pointed out that kids have been faking parental notes for some time, and didn't think this one would be any different.

So, the vote was 10-24 in favor of sensible government. Take that, nanny-staters.

Herseth to address legislature tomorrow at 2pm (Updated - AND Thune will be as well)

Congresswoman Herseth is addressing the South Dakota Legislature tomorrow to talk about what's going on in Washington.

Do you think she's going to talk about the Pelosi Iraq resolution? (okay, maybe not).

Updated - South Dakota's own Senator Thune will also be addressing the legislature tomorrow.

(Sorry, I didn't see the release on it yet).

Cap Journal Story on HPV Vaccine vote today

The Pierre Capitol Journal has a story today on the HPV vaccine proposal, which I believe happens to be up for a vote today in front of the legislature:
The three-dose series cost the state $288 per person, according to Hollingsworth. Families can expect to pay an administration charge, which usually is about $10 she said.

"The health department, like we do all other childhood vaccines, is sending this to physician's offices across the state so families can go and have a discussion with their doctor," she said.


"Given the nature of the drug and the lack of knowledge about it, I would sure think that it would be incumbent for the executive (branch) to consult with the legislative branch before going down this road," said state Sen. Brock Greenfield, R-Clark.

Hollingsworth said the Department of Health has no plans to try to make the vaccine part of school requirements.

Greenfield said his primary concern about the vaccine is the new side effects being discovere…

Hughes County Lincoln Day Dinner this week

If you're Republican, and in Pierre this week, you might want to go check out the Hughes County Lincoln Day Dinner this Thursday night.

This years event will be on Thursday February 22 at the Ramkota in Pierre, and they will be honoring Don Rounds as the volunteer of the year. Former State House Speaker Matt Michels (who has been mentioned as a gubernatorial hopeful) will be the keynote speaker.

I think it all kicks off about 6ish.

I'll be there covering the event for the website, and I hope to have some pictures and sound bites to go along with them.

See you there.

Dogpile on Prieksat.

Ever since the Governor's Chief of Staff leveled charges last week that US Fish and Wildlife officer Bob Prieksat was a problem in the relations that the State was trying to build with hunters and landowners, it seems people coming out of the woodwork to agree:
“He harassed us. He bullied me. He used mob-like tactics and intimidates us,” he said. “He told us that he would level enough charges against us that we’d have to close our doors, and by the time the courts sorted it out, we’d be bankrupt. He defamed our character and demeaned us.”

Prieksat denies the bullying charge and rejects Gilkerson’s categorization of his visit to the shop as a “raid.” Prieksat said he and a state conservation officer stopped at Steamboat to check on another issue when they found violations by Gilkerson.and in another article
...the news story and Web site traffic are prompting some Prieksat critiques to go public. Steve Wright of Albert Lea, Minn., and Jim Wendl of west central Iowa claim that Prieksat…

First she's against it.
Then she's for it.
Now, she's against it again.

In his Argus Leader column, Dave Kranz pointed out yesterday that congresswoman Stephanie Herseth has had more than one opinion on Iraq. First, she was against direct action. Then, she was in support of it. Recently, she went with the Pelosi measure to try to stop a surge in troop numbers to hasten the end of the war.

What's a blue dog to do?:
During a debate with Janklow, Herseth said she supported congressional action to eliminate threats to national security. She spoke of Saddam Hussein, the Iraqi leader and long-time villain to the United States government.

"I agree wholeheartedly that we need a regime change in Iraq," she said at the time.

But an acceptable course of action would come only after exhausting diplomatic options.and...
As a new member of the Veterans Affairs Committee, one of her first moves on the job was making a trip to Iraq to meet South Dakota troops and talk with military leaders and citizens of the country.

The subject on her mind with local troops: &q…

Thune Endorses McCain

In several places, including the McCain related Iowa political blog "Straight Talk, Iowa Style," it's being mentioned that South Dakota Senator John Thune is endorsing John McCain for the presidency:

Our neighbor to the Northwest, Senator John Thune, from South Dakota has formally endorsed McCain's Presidential bid. Being familiar with Northwest Iowa, STIS has had it eyes on this relationship for a while. Months ago we speculated that Thune might be on McCain's short list of Veep choices.

And while it is unlikely that two sitting Senators would be on the ticket, McCain refused to distance himself from that line of speculation. In fact, McCain mentioned Thune as a possible running mate. (While this is premature speculation, STIS thinks it is good bet that McCain will pick someone from the Midwest or Northeast, Pawlenty or Guiliani, etc...).

Thune's support for McCain is a huge "get." Thune, long considered a shining star in the GOP, became a dragon slay…

I think I've heard it all now.

As we're trying to figure out the best way to execute one of his co-conspirators, one South Dakota State Penitentiary inmate is hoping the administration will let him exchange his cardboard sword for a plastic one as he worships the Norse god Odin... as related in this Associated Press story in the Rapid City Journal:
An inmate serving life in prison for a torture murder that sent two co-defendants to death row wants a federal judge to approve a toy sword and other items and privileges for the practice of an ancient European religion.Darrell Hoadley of Lead, who was convicted of murder for his part in the 2000 slaying of Chester Allan Poage near Spearfish, filed the handwritten complaint in U.S. District Court. He lists himself in court documents as counsel elder of the Asatru religious group.


In the administrative comments section of some of the requests, prison officials cite a legal settlement on the Asatru religion and another case that’s pending as reasons for why…

Very, very sad news.

I would note that an obituary appeared in the Argus Leader yesterday for the infant Daughter of former State Representative Matt McCaulley:
Samantha Grace McCaulley (born February 13, 2007) passed away early on
February 16, 2007 at Sanford Children's Hospital, resting peacefully between her
mother and father. Samantha died as a result of complications caused by a rare
chromosomal anomaly.

Her parents, Matthew and Heather, were deeply blessed to have shared 67
hours with Samantha. While we mourn her passing, we rejoice with the assurance
that Samantha now lives with her heavenly Father free of her physical and
genetic limitations.
Read it here.

For those of you who would like to leave your condolences, you can do so at

Also from the notice, "the family will be present from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. at Heritage Funeral Home on Monday, February 19, with a memorial service on Tuesday, February 20, at 2:00 p.m. at Central Baptist Church in Sioux Falls. There will be a priv…

Just a couple of points why HB 1232 should come off of the table

I have to shake my head at some of my friends in the legislature when I see votes such as this one taking place as related by Bill Harlan in the Rapid City Journal:
Bar owners beat developers Thursday in a fight in the state Capitol over
whether to let South Dakota towns create districts with unlimited restaurant
liquor licenses.

Rapid City Mayor Jim Shaw had testified at an earlier hearing that the
special liquor-license districts would have helped spur development in four
large projects in the city costing almost $500 million.

But last week the full Senate rejected one version of the bill
18-15.Thursday morning another version of the bill was killed by an 8-5 vote in
the House Local Government Committee, despite a last-minute effort to find a

Holders of current liquor licenses say the new districts would have driven
down the value of current licenses, which can be worth hundreds of thousands of
dollars because the state limits the number of licenses a city can have.

The compromise wou…

More posts coming... Get me to a sound studio..

Sorry for the light posting this weekend. I was one of those who abandoned Pierre in anticipation of the blizzard, and I didn't want to get caught there.

I've had posts on the back burner, the first of which was the Turbak chicken walk. Now that I'm through one of my daughter's 8th birthday party, I've got two more; One on the Dykstra committee comments on the 150% rule, as well as the Van Etten crack made in committee when the "newbies" let the midwife bill go to the floor (how dare they?!?) while he was out.

Unfortunately, I left my PC with all my sound editing stuff back in Pierre, so I'll have to go install audigy (excellent free sound editor) on one of my daughter's computers, as well as finding a "real media" converter, since SDPB insists on using that ridiculous non-mp3 format (personal peeve, sorry).

Stay tuned for more to come.

No, not the chicken dance, or chicken run. It's called the chicken walk.

I had an e-mail this weekend pointing something out to me where a reader remarked to me "did you see how Nancy Turbak did the chicken walk on the death penalty bill?"

Sure enough, it looks highly suspicious that it may have occurred.

What's the chicken walk? It's legislative slang for when a lawmaker can't or won't vote on a bill of some controversy. Symptoms include being mysteriously busy for a single vote, while being there for the non-controversial votes immediately before, and after.

In this case, it was the Senate's vote on House Bill 1175:

The question now being "Shall HB 1175 pass?"

And the roll being called:

Yeas 26, Nays 7, Excused 2, Absent 0

Abdallah; Albers; Apa; Bartling; Dempster; Duenwald; Gant; Garnos; Gray; Greenfield; Hansen (Tom); Hanson (Gary); Hauge; Heidepriem; Hoerth; Hunhoff;
Kloucek; Knudson; Lintz; McCracken; McNenny; Napoli; Olson (Ed); Peterson (Jim);
Schmidt (Dennis); Smidt (Orville)

Hundstad; Jerstad; Katus; Koetzl…