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Saturday, October 15, 2005

Mitch Berg from Whine in the Dark Has Another Meltdown

Blogger Berg isn't too happy about getting called a Chickenhawk. He has a rather longwinded and pointless rant on the topic. The comments are pretty hilarious.

If you think this war is A Great Cause, and you know they're having trouble recruiting, and you're fit and able--put up or shut up, sweetheart. It's that simple.

The US military exists to protect the nation--not serve the whim of a king. And yet, the troops are dying because the Chickenhawk-In-Chief wants a "legacy" and because his puppeteers masturbate to PNAC. You still want a Crusade badly enough? Prove it...coward.
Posted by: Happenstance at October 14, 2005 04:25 PM

Weasel Dick - er, "Happenstance"

"put up or shut up, sweetheart. It's that simple."

Put this up, you gabbling moron: I'm 42. Unless I happen to have a skill the military REALLY needs, they don't want me. Sweetheart.

"You still want a Crusade badly enough? Prove it...coward."

Um, yeah. That means a lot, coming from someone who doesn't have the seeds to post his name.

You kiss your sister with that mouth?

Go flog your pathetic little pecker and pollute someone else's comment section, you worthless little chipmumk.
Posted by: mitch at October 14, 2005 06:27 PM

Oh my--I pissed the little bitch off!

They ARE taking 42-year-olds, so go sign up. If you're such a vital tool in The War of Ideas (*snark*) I'm sure they can teach you to do something in Iraq. It'll make a man out of you.

And yeah, I don't post my info because I'm not a big fan of spam. But I do have six years of military service under my belt and I can tell you this: the vets and active-duty military are growing increasingly tired of you gutless-wonder keyboard warriors, with your brave mouths and yellow backs.

So by all means--keep popping your yap off.
Posted by: Happenstance at October 15, 2005 03:15 AM

Happ, I suspect you're a "last call SEAL". Not sure what it is, but the read I get off you is that you were never even as close to the military as I was.

And they're *talking* about taking 42 year olds, the last I checked, and in any case my knee was a problem the *last* time I tried to enlist.

You know perfectly well that you don't have to get spammed by leaving a real name.

Try sticking with things you know about. It may mean you never write anything again. Too bad.
Posted by: mitch at October 15, 2005 08:50 AM


Yup, Mitch is having a meltdown. He's contradicting himself again.

MNObserver recalls another NARNian Meltdown.

More Idiocy from McCluck

Pawlenty Spokesperson Brian McClung (aka McCluck) was quoted with another idiocy today. From the strib:

Gov. Tim Pawlenty announced late Friday that he will not call a special legislative session "at this time," apparently ending weeks of private negotiations with DFL and Republican caucus leaders over whether to reconvene to consider sports stadium plans and other unfinished business from the bitter 2005 legislative marathon.

Pawlenty said he is still "willing to bring the Legislature back to St. Paul if legislators can reach agreement on a limited agenda and a number of days." Otherwise, he said, "they'll have to wait four and a half months until the next regular session."

Although Republican legislative leaders were the most decisive over the last week in opposing a special session, Republican Pawlenty in a written statement singled out the DFL Senate caucus for being "unwilling to commit to a special session to deal with a few timely and worthwhile issues."

Senate Majority Leader Dean Johnson, DFL-Willmar, responded testily, saying that he reminded the governor in a conversation Friday that "his own party, by way of House Majority Leader Erik Paulsen, told him the same thing just four days ago."

"To be honest, [Pawlenty] has been swimming around and mucking around and now due to his lack of leadership, he's decided to make it partisan," Johnson said.

Pawlenty's press secretary, Brian McClung, acknowledged Johnson's point about strong rank-and-file Republican opposition to a special session. But he said the statement's focus was on DFLers because "the information we received today from Senator Johnson was the newest piece."

Pawlenty's use of the phrase "at this time" leaves open the possibility of an agreement some time before the 2006 session covenes on March 1. McClung defined the phrase this way:

"Absent a new development, the governor is not going to call a special session."


Will McClung talk about the definition of "is" next?

Lloydletta's Nooz Gets Plug from Politics in Minnesota

"Your Democratic publisher is a big fan of Air America's concept. Locally, Janet Robert and former Congressman Bill Luther have done a great job of building the local Air America station (950 AM) -- sometimes in spite of the talent and personnel issues they have encountered, and many believe Robert has created.

One personnel issue they haven't taken on is as much of a personality issue as it is anything else. Former WCCO substitute host Wendy Wilde found herself in a lucky spot when Air America first launched and comedian Jeff Gerbino quit after two or three days of working for Robert. But now Wilde is in a different sort of spot. Kudos go to the local blog Lloydetta, run by long-time political activist Eva Young, who got Wilde to confess that she started one of these famous attack Web sites written anonymously against Minneapolis City Council candidate Scott Persons."


I also covered the dispute between Janet Robert and Nick Coleman. The question is whether the infamous No Guns, Gays or Abortion memo distributed by Robert to station staff was designed to help 6th District candidate Elwyn Tinklenberg.

Pot Calling the Kettle Black

Failed School Board Candidate and Embarrassment to the Republican Party Swiftee has a new issue of the Life in the Dumpster series - a comic strip that revolves around yours truly. You'd think Swiftee would have something better to do. This shows up as the most current post on MNSpeak.

Swiftee

This time he comments on my efforts to publicize my blogs and he has problems with that. What's rather ironic, is that he posted this item yesterday. However the mn-speak aggregator shows it as the most recently updated.

Now I think there are good reasons to bump a post when you want to keep the issue current. Republishing a post just to make it show up as more recent on blog news aggregators is just a shameless self promotion method.

So I think Swiftee is just the pot calling the kettle black. But whatever.

Is the Robert Lilligren Campaign Doing Push Polling?

Note: This post has been updated.

******Lloydletta's Nooz Exclusive******

Minneapolis 6th Ward Incumbents Robert Lilligren and Dean Zimmerman were thrown together by redistricting. It's a tight race.

A friend of mine who lives in the 6th ward told me about a strange call she got. The call came from Voter Registration Survey, and wanted to ask her some questions. She questioned the caller, and eventually the caller - a woman - admitted to being from the Robert Lilligren campaign. My friend didn't know to let the caller ask all the questions.

I called the Dean Zimmerman campaign - and they have gotten one other call that told them about something like this. I left a message with the Lilligren campaign for comment.

Developing. . .

UPDATE: I just checked my voice mail on both phones. Robert Lilligren has not returned my call. Lilligren supporter Barb Lickness says the Lilligren campaign is not engaged in push polling.

I would also like to state that the Lilligren campaign is definately NOT engaged in push polling. We are just polling voters. Robert has guided all of us who are working on his campaign to stay on the "high road" and run a campaign based on the issues and why he is the best person to represent the 6th ward during the next term.

Barb Lickness
Whittier
Avid supporter of Robert Lilligren in the 6th.


Other comments on the issue on the Minneapolis Rumors list here, here and here.

Stillwater Gazette Fired Columnist Sets Up Blog

Here.

What do you think of a newspaper editor who fires a columnist who's written about public affairs for the local paper for more than two years--without a week's notice, without even an entire day's notice, because that columnist wrote a piece critical of some of the local school board members and candidates? A piece that was pitched to and read by the editor and the paper's school board reporter in advance of deadline? Fired, because I wrote a piece that the editor chose to publish--an accurate piece, a piece in which any rumors were identified as a rumor, a
piece which was fact-checked by one of the reporters?

Soon after the piece appeared, some of the elected officials and candidates got in contact with my editor. They complained, they carped, they wrote letters--and rather than stand up to them, my editor and publisher caved, caved completely, caved like the Carlsbad Caverns. They caved so fast even local bats were taken by surprise. "Hey, look at that!" said the bats "A new cave! Overnight! A complete and utter cave! And a big one! A professional cave, a journalistic cave!" The Gazette's problem: the players in an upcoming election are complaining about criticism by a columnist weeks prior to that election. The Gazette's solution: Fire the columnist. But wait a minute--doesn't that make us look like a bunch of spineless jellyfish? Firing the columnist for writing about an election, prior to the election? After all, the columnist didn't say anything defamatory, didn't say anything false about the elected officials and candidates. The columnist ran the piece by the editor before publication and got her approval. Couldn't we at least wait til after the election to fire him? Then we wouldn't look so spineless, then it wouldn't look like we were caving so completely and so utterly. Then it wouldn't look like the local elected officials and candidate were deciding what should and shouldn't be printed in the pages of the Gazette.


Developing. . .

I have contacted the publisher to get his side of the story. Here's his contact information. You can contact him also:

John Lund
651-796-1116
johnlund@pressenter.com

Keith Boykin Banned from Speaking at the Million Man March by Willie Wilson

Pam Spaulding sent me the breaking news. From Metro Weekly's blog:

Posted by Sean Bugg at 10:37 AM

Breaking news from Metro Weekly's Will O'Bryan, who's on-site at the National Black Justice Coalition's "We Are Family" Unity Rally at Freedom Plaza in D.C.

A month-long effort by the National Black Justice Coalition and the D.C. Coalition to secure a speaker at the Millions More Movement commemoration event that met with apparent success mid-week, was quashed this morning.

When NBJC president Keith Boykin and vice-president Donna Payne reported to the event on the Mall, they say, they were blocked from speaking by MMM organizer Rev. Willie Wilson.

Boykin was supposed to represent the black LGBT community at the event.

Back at the Freedom Plaza rally, Payne said that when she and Boykin arrived at the MMM site, Wilson said, "They will not be speaking."

"I'm so angry, so angry," Payne said.


From Gay.com:

"In our previous conversations with Minister Farrakhan, he has consistently kept his word. Rev. Wilson, however, has not been cooperative. We call on Minister Farrakhan to fulfill our agreement," the statement said.

Wilson is executive director of the Millions More Movement. He is also pastor of Union Temple Baptist Church in Southeast Washington, the District's largest Black congregation and has a record of homophobia.

In July Wilson, warned his congregation that "Sisters making more money than brothers and it's creating problems in families . . . that's one of the reasons many of our women are becoming lesbians."

In the July 3 sermon entitled "You've Got to Fight to Be Free" he also said, "Lesbianism is about to take over our community. I'm talking about young girls. My son in high school last year tried to go to the prom. He said, 'Dad, I ain't got nobody to take to the prom because all the girls in my class are gay. Ain't but two of 'em straight, and both of them ugly.'"

Wilson went on to say, "I ain't homophobic because everybody here got something wrong with him," he said. "But . . . women falling down on another woman, strapping yourself up with something, it ain't real. That thing ain't got no feeling in it. It ain't natural. Anytime somebody got to slap some grease on your behind and stick something in you, it's something wrong with that. Your butt ain't made for that.


This was Willie Wilson acting in bad faith. Hopefully this will be all the television news coverage of this issue. It would have been no national news with Keith Boykin speaking. Now it will be National News with this.

I'd like to talk to Minnesota activists who went to this March.

The Spokesman Recorder has some coverage of local organizing about this:

The actual observance of the march is on October 15, where the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan will ask organizers from various cities to have commemorative programs in those respective cities,” according to NOI Minister Jason Muhammad, who took the time to talk with the MSR about the upcoming MMM.

How is the Millions More Movement going to be different from the Million Man March?

“With the Million Man March, the Minister [Farrakhan] called for one million people, and nearly two million showed up. After that we began to do tremendous work: we began to adopt children, stay at home, take on better jobs, education, we began to clean up crime in our communities and be better husbands to our wives. But unfortunately, as we went to work, other forces, opposing forces, went to work as well to counteract, and make the work that we were doing become counterproductive. Therefore, we began to see that we started on a death march. We began to see that violence began to increase again, we began to lose jobs again, and our homes began to become impoverished as a community once again, because the more we strive to become a more respected and more community oriented people, than that threatens the position of those that are actually trying to keep us impoverished, and those that are trying to make us out of hope.

"What we mean is that, when we are in a process of striving to overcome the difficulties that are in our way, and when you have people who have invested money and invested time, so that the so-called 'American Negro' is kept down, to see that he never threatens the position of those that are in authority today, we must be kept as drug addicts, we must kept as alcoholics, we must - as the men - kept unemployed and uneducated. That's all an investment of the powers that be so that we can never threaten the position of power that exists today," said Mohammed.

Are you saying that the collective misery we experience in the U.S.A. is a necessary condition of this power system?

"That is correct. Our condition as a people stems from 400 years of slavery and oppression that has been put on us as a people. There was a Caribbean slave owner named Willie Lynch, and Willie Lynch had it in his letter to other slave owners about how to break and keep your slave a slave, and this would be a perpetual thing for three hundred or four hundred years. How he did it was to instill that type of thinking in the Black woman, who as the primary teacher of the children, would instill inferior teaching and fear in the Black children, and therefore we suffered from that as a result.

How are organizers getting people getting to the March from the Twin Cities?

"We actually have buses that are leaving from New Salem Baptist Church on October 14 that will be getting to Washington, D.C. on the 15th. It going be a round trip, leave from New Salem and get to D.C. on the 15th in time for the rally, then get back on the bus and head for the Twin Cities. It’s not going to be overnight; it’s a trip there and a trip back," said Mohammed.

How many buses?

"We have three buses that have been locked in thus far, and we are drastically striving to fill those buses up so that we can get people to the Millions More Movement. We’ve invited several different churches to come on board, but unfortunately, some of the other churches haven’t signed on as of yet, however, we have faith that the more we push, the more we talk, the more we strive, it should go straight to the spirit of those who are spiritual people, and help them to understand the necessity of this struggle," said Mohammed.

What other constituencies do you anticipate to have a large presence at the Millions More Movement? We know that Min. Farrakhan has invited the GLBT community to participate in this, as well as other groups who have been traditionally left?

"Okay, let me make a correction: He never invited the gay and lesbian community. The Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan opened up the doors and he said that whomever comes, come as you are, whether you are gay or lesbian. But he did not make a direct invite to the GLBT community, however, whoever comes are welcome to come," Mohammed stated.

To reserve a seat on a bus destined for the Millions More Movement, or for more information, call 763-443-8112, 612-436-5404, or visit www.millionsmoremovement.com.


Reporters can call Jason Mohammed for comment at: 612-436-5404 on Monday.

I've left messages with both Natalie Johnson Lee and the Don Samuels campaign requesting comment. I told them my deadline is at the end of the day Monday.

Keith Boykin posts his speech here.

I was thinking this probably happened because Keith Boykin and Jasmyne Cannick did the outing campaign looking for stories about Willie Wilson being a closet gay.

This reminds me alot of what happened between Log Cabin Republicans and the Bush campaign in 2000. Jake Tapper's account discusses the Log Cabin internal divisions on this.

How Come

I agree with Eva Young that the American Family Association (based in Mississippi) has gone too far. This fundamentalist group, along with the Pro-life Action League, also fundamentalist, is attacking American Girl because it supports "I Can", a program of Girls, Inc., a national nonprofit organization, because of its educational and empowerment programs which encourage girls to be "strong, smart and bold", namely because of that program's emphasis on science and math, leadership skills, athletic skills and team spirit. So they are saying there is something wrong with that because Girls Inc., according to the Pro-life Action League, "supports abortion (I doubt that; more likely the promote individual decision making) oppose abstinence (who opposes that; we all know it sexual desires of young people are seldom tempered with knowledge and when abstincne fails (as it often
does) those people are called parents - ill equipped and ill informed)and because they say it condones lesbiamism". So? It is much better than condoning lack of information as the AFA and PLAL do. I do not know of any advocay organization that specifically says it is promoting ignorance, but these two are close. Apparently what they want is young girls to grow up not knowing how to make decisions for themselves: therefore they will never have to confront thorny issues like unwanted pregnancy or homosexuality. Sounds like a "head in the sand" approach to life and living. Too bad.

People get to belive what they believe, and I champion that. But I do not champion getting to beliefs by by-passing information.

Eva adds: This is the article about the AFA's campaign. I had sent an email out to the mn-logcabin list about this, and copied Mary Tambornino (Vixen). This was what I said:

Subject: Anti-gay Activists Boycotts 'Pro-Gay' Doll

This is one of my biggest pet peeves. These are NOT conservatives, and their actions are frequently unchristian. They are anti-gay activists. This is from a gay news source. My title line for this is better than what gay.com used.

I'm not sure of the contact addresses for American Girl - but people ought to write them to thank them for doing the right thing.

Eva

Pam Spaulding Picks Up on the FRC/Grover Norquist Flap

Here.

Family Research Council's Tony Perkins Blows a Gasket

He's mad that Grover Norquist, of Americans for Tax Reform, accepted an invitation to speak at a Texas Log Cabin Republican gathering. Eva at Lloydletta, passed on the item from the FRC newsletter.

Tony seems to be really wound too tight and a bit panicked about the right wing's state of distress. I think he needs a little man-love. Maybe he can get it from his good friend David Duke.

Public Access TV

The Ku Klux Klan is getting their own show on Michigan Public Access TV. Pam Spaulding has the scoop.

Here in the 5th ward, the Al Flowers show on public access tv is pretty appalling.

At a recent debate the tension Johnson Lee and Samuels is evident. "Natalie sits here, well dressed in a pink suit and as she says dignified, while behind her is a slough of very nasty campaigners," says Samuels from the stage of the North High School auditorium.

During the debate, Samuels accuses Johnson Lee of leading a group of activists who've attacked him. One of them has compared Samuels to klansman David Duke and Adolph Hitler. Another has filed a lawsuit against Samuels.

"And they have weekly, about three hours a week lambasted me as a klan member, as a hater of black people, because I'm honest enough to talk about some of the vulnerabilities of our community, how we don't like ourselves," he says.


I guess images of the Klan are shown on this TV show. I will be getting a DVD of the show from the Samuels campaign.

Johnson Lee tells the audience she's not responsible for any of the comments made by her supporters.

"There are some people offended by some of the things that my opponent has said," Johnson Lee says. "And they have decided to do something about it. That has nothing to do with me."

The main controversy over what Samuels said, and the response it elicited starts back in March of this year. Samuels spoke at a community forum on crime prevention. He told the audience that he and his wife made a point to move into a neighborhood challenged by poverty and crime because they felt they could make a difference there. Samuels told the group that the inner city needs more black middle class families like his to move in and serve as role models.

To illustrate why some black families have advantages others do not, he cited his Jamaican heritage.

"I say all the time that my great grandfather on both sides were mulatto men," says Samuels. "They were descended from the last slave in the family. Mulatto slaves. And the reason my family got a leg up on the people in our village in Jamaica is that we were in the big house. We saw homework done. They saw books read. They saw the piano lessons. That's why my wife and I say, our house is the big house on our block. And we're going to open it up to every kid on the block."

Samuels comment struck a nerve with some African Americans because it highlights some of the divisions created during slavery. It recalls a painful history of how forced unions between white slavemasters and black women created a color caste system that put lighter skinned black Americans above darker people. Samuels says he's not proud of that history, but says black people should not be afraid to talk about it.

But some of Johnson Lee's supporters say Samuels is not the one to lead that discussion.

"A lot of white people may not know this, but that's why it's so offensive to us - when someone tells us they're from the 'big house'. We don't need to hear this about no nigga from the big house, excuse my language," says Booker Hodges in a clip from a cable access show that was broadcast last May.


I can understand why people found Samuels comment offensive. It's the way people in the Central Neighborhood feel about the patronizing attitude from Park Avenue Methodist Church. I also think that Samuels was trying to discuss the issue of race in an honest way. It's important to have honest discussions of this issues.

Hodges is the one who compared Samuels attitudes about race to those of Hitler and David Duke. Hodges has also likened Samuels to the house slaves who sabotaged rebellions by field slaves like Nat Turner.

"We as a people, one, in Minneapolis, have to unite. And we have to learn from Nat Turner's mistake and we have to kill the house niggers," Hodges said on his broadcast. "We have to kill them. And that's what we're doing on this show. We're trying to kill the house niggers."


I listened to this clip. It's pretty menacing. The best face you can put on it, is to say that Hodges meant "defeat" when he used the word kill.

Samuels took that comment as a personal threat and filed charges. Hodges says he didn't threaten Samuels. But he apologized. The charges were dropped.


This is a gray area. You certainly don't want elected officials to overuse this to shut down critics.

At the same time, I want to see shows that criticize city government on MTN. I have not watched "The Real State of the City". I'd like to watch some episodes to decide for myself.

But Natalie Johnson Lee says she's not running a negative campaign. And she says the Samuels campaign is trying to bait her and get her to act like the stereotypical "angry black woman."


Natalie again tries to diffuse the real issue by using the race card.

For its part, the Samuels campaign has taken aim at Johnson Lee's husband Travis Lee. Lee publishes a monthly magazine that focuses on the local R&B and hip hop music and club scene. Lee's paper has been critical of Samuels. Samuels has called the publication a "porno mag" because it has run an advertisement for a strip club.


Travis Lee's magazine is tacky, but isn't pornographic. I think Don Samuels should apologise for this remark.

Johnson Lee says neither Hodges' television show nor her husbands' publication speak for her. But she's not about to tell people who support her to be quiet.

"If you open your mouth and you say things and you're going to speak boldly about different issues, you just may get attacked," says Johnson Lee.


Natalie has the responsibility to speak out publicly against the overheated rhetoric - especially the comparisons of Samuels to the Klan and Hitler. This reminds me of how she dealt with the Bob Battle column. Unfortunately she hasn't gotten reporters to ask her about that one.

UPDATE: Margaret Martin (David Strom's wife) discusses the 5th ward race.

Friday, October 14, 2005

Are Gays "Leeching" off the Civil Rights movement?

Dennis Sanders from Moderate Republican has a thoughtful exchange with Shay from Booker Rising about this question. Dennis is President of Log Cabin Republicans of Minnesota, and is the Pastor at Community of Grace Christian Church.

Tony Perkins is Peeved that Grover Norquist is Speaking to Texas Log Cabin Republicans

Yes David Duke's and Michele Bachmann's pal. Dump Bachmann has called on Senator Bachmann to publicly repudiate Tony Perkins because of ties to David Duke and the racist Council of Conservative Citizens. She has yet to do so.

From the FRC Daily Bleating:

Taxing Our Tolerance

Texas leaders of the Log Cabin Republicans, a homosexual organization within the G.O.P., are headlining Grover Norquist as their main speaker at a fund-raiser tomorrow night. Norquist is the well-respected leader of Americans for Tax Reform, a group I was once part of as a Louisiana legislator. FRC has worked with Grover Norquist on tax issues and their impact on the family for many years. Because of our relationship we have voiced our concern directly with Mr. Norquist over his apparent support of this anti-family group. We pointed out to Mr. Norquist that some of the funds raised would be plowed into Log Cabin's fight against the pro-marriage amendment on the ballot next month in Texas.

Grover has spent years working to assemble a coalition of fiscal and social conservatives and his decision to aid those who are trying to destroy the institution of marriage is truly a disappointment and will no doubt split this important coalition. As social conservatives we remain committed to the country's fiscal and social well- being; we have tolerance neither for increasing taxes nor marginalizing marriage. If only that commitment ware mutual.


Good for Grover Norquist.

UPDATE: Gary Glenn from AFA Michigan is having a cow also.

The Dallas Voice -- Community Newspaper for Gay & Lesbian Dallas
October 12, 2005

Tax reformer Norquist to headline Grand Ol' Party

Log Cabin Republicans largest fundraiser of the year expected to be `bigger and better' than ever

By David Webb, Staff Writer

National tax reform leader Grover Norquist is scheduled to speak at Log Cabin Republicans of Dallas' Grand Ol' Party on Oct. 15.

Carla Halbrook of Dallas, a national board member of the gay political group, said she is expecting the appearance by Norquist to make the event, the group's ninth annual dinner and fundraiser, the best in its history.

...Halbrook said she heard Norquist speak once before at a national Log Cabin Republican event.

...The local group is paying part of the salary for a field director representing Log Cabin Republicans to work helping defeat Proposition 2 (a Marriage Protection Amendment to the Texas constitution appearing on the November 2005 ballot).

Contributions at the event range from $95 dinner seats to four-figure donations, Halbrook said.

------

Read full story at the Dallas Voice.

Contact Grover Norquist:

Americans For Tax Reform
1920 L Street NW, Suite 200
Washington, DC 20036

Phone: (202) 785-0266
Fax: (202) 785-0261
E-mail: friends@atr.org

Farrakan Meets with the National Black Justice Coalition

From their press release:

Minister Farrakhan Invites Openly Gay Speaker to Millions More Movement

Fulfills Earlier Promise and Starts Dialogue

October 12, 2005 - Washington, DC - In an unprecedented first, Minister Louis Farrakhan asked NBJC Board President, Keith Boykin to address the attendees of the Millions More Movement. The invitation was a direct result of months of correspondence between the National Black Justice Coalition and the Nation of Islam and Movement organizers.

On Wednesday, in downtown Washington, DC, NBJC board members Boykin, Vice-President Donna Payne and Executive Director & CEO H. Alexander Robinson met for 75-minutes with Nation of Islam leader the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan. Members of Minister Farrakhan’s immediate family and Rev. Willie Wilson, executive director of the Millions More Movement were also in attendance. This was the first time that Minister Farrakhan has met face-to-face with openly gay and lesbian leaders.

"I am honored to be asked to speak at the Millions More Movement March, and I strongly support the Movement's goals of unity and inclusion of our entire community. I have met Minister Farrakhan previously, but this is the first time I have met with him privately," said Boykin. "This dialogue is long overdue; we were only able to scratch the surface. Future conversations will involve more substantive discussions about our ideological differences."

"It is our most sincere hope that this portends a new chapter in the story of how we liberated our community from the prison of homophobia,” said Robinson. “This chapter is about reconciliation, education and acceptance of the gifts and talents that gay people of African descent have and will continue to contribute to the quest to lift up our people."

Donna Payne, NBJC Board Vice-President, said "We are all committed to healing the wounds of the past and building alliances to meet the challenges we will confront together."

# # #

About the National Black Justice Coalition

The National Black Justice Coalition is a civil rights organization of Black lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people and our allies dedicated to fostering equality by fighting racism and homophobia. The Coalition advocates for social justice by educating and mobilizing opinion leaders, including elected officials, clergy, and media, with a focus on Black communities.


It's very similar to the way Log Cabin Republicans forced Bush to meet with gays during the 2000 campaign. I find this a bit ironic, because Keith Boykin had heavy criticism for Robert Trayham - a black gay man who works for Rick Santorum. When Trayham was outed, Santorum stood by him. I find Santorum appalling, and I hope he gets defeated. That being said, he should be praised for standing by Trayham when Trayham was outed.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Bad Policy at the Rochester Post Bulletin

From Eleventh Avenue South

A lesbian couple from Rochester who were recently married in Canada tried to get their wedding announced in the Rochester Post-Bulletin, but were denied because editorial policy prohibits same-sex marriage announcements. From KSTP 5 News:

"Although the paper does publish wedding announcements for free, the publisher will not post announcements from gay couples. The couple instead was told to purchase an ad in the paper. Publisher and Editor Jon Losness created the policy. He declined an interview with 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS."

The article also notes that papers in the Twin Cities area do allow same-sex marriage announcments.

Here's who to contact to let them know you think this sucks:

Jon Losness
Publisher & Editor
507 285-7725



While I agree this policy is crap, I sure hope that the women only push for a public outcry rather than pursuing any legal means (if any exist). If this gets pushed too far in any one direction I believe it will ensure the passage of the Bachmann Amendment.

Lloydletta adds: Lloydletta's Nooz will be glad to publish same sex wedding announcements on our blog. Please send your announcement to: lloydletta (at) gmail dot com.

David has a good point. The place to debate this is in the battle of public opinion - not in the courts. Perhaps people can try to put a full page ad in the Rochester Post Bulletin to urge calls to the Bulletin Editor to change their policy. Will the Post Bulletin accept that ad?

An anonymous poster over on Eleventh Avenue South made the point that Lavender had broken this story first. It's rather rare for Lavender to break a story. Eleventh Avenue South breaks more original stories than Lavender. I'll have to start reading their news briefs again. I read the Michael Krause columns in Lavender and the letters. I haven't been reading the news briefs because I rarely see a Lavender news brief that hasn't been published online previously.

I always read Paul Varnell's columns at the Independent Gay Forum before I see them in Lavender.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Wendy Wilde Explains the Stop Scott Persons Blog

As reported here earlier, I contacted Wendy Wilde for comment. Here is her response, which I post here after asking if her it is ok to make this public.

Date: Tue, 11 Oct 2005 21:49:36 -0500
From: Wendy Wilde
To: Eva Young
Subject: Re: Scott Persons


Hi Eva,

I do not know who Minneapolis Upside Down is, but I put StopScott up. I kept my name off because at the time I didn't think it was fair of me to go public with this information because my name was well known. But after thinking it over, I decided that the right thing to do was to tell what I experienced, so I did, on my show Monday.

I joined the Lyndale Neighborhood board of directors in the middle of Scott Persons' 2 year term as President. That year the neighborhood overspent its budget by some $42,000 with an $8000 phone bill. This information is readily available to anyone that wants to see it on the atty general's website... there is a direct link on stopscott.blogspot.com look at the numbers for yourself.

The next year (Scott was no longer the President but was absolutely still influencing the direction of the board under new President Julia Copeland), there was an $82,000+ write off. I tried to ask a few questions but was rebuffed with "we told you the auditor approved the write off" and scorn from Jeannie Cunningham the treasurer and snears from Scott. I was new to dealing with this kind of money and I figured they knew what they were talking about so I voted to approve the financials.

Later I overheard a conversation among LNA high-ups concerning that money and a comment of "we were lucky to get through the audit." And another comment that refered to "illegal activities." This was in reference to the $82,000 write off.

I was worried and asked a non-profit attorney for advice. She said to write a detailed letter to the Board of Directors, the Secretary of State, the Mayor, Minneapolis NRP and anyone else that might be in a position of responsibility and accountability concerning the money. I did speak with an investigator with the state and she said she would make notes in the Lyndale Neighborhood Association file about my concerns but that they didn't have the resources to research the incident.

There were other concerns besides the money. Two of my african-american neighbors and 1 african-american board member had told me of less than equal-opportunity experiences they had had with the neighborhood association. By my standards this was even worse than the money issue. I included this information in my letter to the board, as well as my complaint that Scott Persons would shoot down anyone that asked questions in board meetings.

I was subsequently voted off the board in a kangaroo monthly neighborhod meeting at which only people hostile to me were called on to comment, even though supporters raised their hands.

I have been told that the following summer other residents called for an investigation into a $50,000 grant not accounted for... I believe that grant was part of the $82,000 write off.

Let me be clear, while I do not believe Scott Persons had a hand in how that $82,000 was spent, he was hostile to my request for a full investigation and full disclosure to quell neighborhood questions.

Further, Scott Persons ran the neighborhood association with what I believe were extravagent expenses when he was President, including the -$42,000 budget and the $8000 phone bills the 2nd year of his presidency.

I have come forward now because the secrecy and ruthlessness I experienced with Scott Persons as President of a neighborhood association are not qualities I want to see elevated to a position of power... nor placed in charge of taxpayer dollars.

Wendy Wilde


Mystery solved.

Wendy Wilde is Stop Scott

Wendy Wilde has acknowledged being the person behind the Stop Scott blog. More on this tomorrow.

Special Election Dates Set

You can view candidate committee registrations here.

From Checks and Balances:

Special Elections Called
10/11/2005

Today, Governor Tim Pawlenty (R) called for a Special Election in Districts 19 and 43 to fill the vacancies created with the retirements of Republican Senators Mark Ourada and David Gaither. The primary date is set for November 1st and the general election is November 22nd.

These seats are seen as long shots for the DFL and will likely not affect the existing balance of power in the Minnesota Senate. Although should either seat change hands, it could be argued as an adverse reaction to the current Republican direction occurring here in the state and nationally. The field of candidates in Senate District 19 are: (Republican) Pat Sawatske, current Wright County Commissioner, Drew Emmer, brother of current Rep. Tom Emmer (R-19B, Delano) and Amy Koch; the only DFL candidate to file for the office at this time is John Dietering, a tax accountant.


I'm looking for information about the Senate District 19 District conventions. Do leave a tip if you know details about these.

In Senate District 43, the candidates are: (Republican) Judy Johnson, current mayor of Plymouth; (Democrat) Terri Bonoff, a member of the Minnetonka Planning Commission and former marketing executive with Tonka Toys, and Anthony (Tony) Wagner.


Towles obviously doesn't read Lloydletta's Nooz, or he'd know that Terri Bonoff got DFL endorsement last weekend, and Wagner is supporting her campaign.

Towles continues:

It will be interesting to watch each of these races to see what type of rhetoric comes out of each contest. In the legislature, Rep. Emmer has introduced controversial legislation for court ordered sterilization for sex offenders. It will be interesting to see if his brother holds a similar position on that issue.


Emmer is also the guy who tried to defund the Minnesota AIDS Project. During the hearing on the Bachmann amendment, he mentioned people marrying their pets.

In District 43, Johnson who is the current President of the Minnesota League of Cities has already called for restoration of Local Government Aid and more funding for localities, which is contrary to the positions staked out by the Pawlenty Administration.

Normally Republicans have a distinct advantage in special elections because of lower voter turnout than in a general election. In this case, the municipal elections occur in the even years so there is not an election on November 8th in either the cities of Buffalo or Plymouth. The date is interesting for another reason since it may provide some insight into a potential special session date. So far we have seen that Pawlenty seeks to have a single day session and Senate Majority Leader Dean Johnson (DFL-13, Willmar) has suggested that it occur before Thanksgiving. With these elections set to occur two days in advance of the holiday, a November 23rd date is not out of the range of possibilities. To call the session before that would mean that the constituents in Plymouth would not be represented, but in the Buffalo area Sen. Ourada has said he will serve until a replacement is elected.


This will be an interesting fall.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Minnesota DFL Congressional Candidate Tim Walz Opposes the Federal Bachmann Amendment

Tim Walz is the Democratic challenger to Gil Gutnecht in Southeastern Minnesota. You can listen to Peter Idusogie's interview with Tim Walz here.

I emailed Tim Walz's campaign asking for his position on the Federal Bachmann Amendment and Don't Ask, Don't Tell.

The campaign responded:

Eva,

My apologies for the delayed response.

Tim Walz bases his beliefs and values on the principle of personal freedom. That said, he does not believe that the Constitution should be amended in any way that would limit a citizen’s personal freedom.

In regards to the current Don't Ask, Don't Tell policy, Tim is of the belief that anyone who wants to serve his or her country should be able to do so. Considering the number of crucial Arabic interpreters America has lost to this policy, it would be wise for the Congress and the military to revisit this issue.

Thank you for your inquiry. Please let me know if I can provide you with any other information.

Best,
Meredith
Meredith Salsbery
Communications Director
Tim Walz for U.S. Congress
507-351-7730
meredith@timwalz.org


UPDATE: Walz addresses this issue, though doesn't state directly that he opposes the Bachmann amendment during the interview with Peter Idusogie.

Ward 2's Cara Letofsky on Stadium Taxes

A commenter left the following comment:

So how do the city council candidates line up on stadium issues?

In Ward 2 both Cam Gordon (Green Back)and Cara Letofsky (DFLout) are dead silent on any stadium proposal. Sounds like they both sold out early.


I posed the question to the Prospect Park elist. Cara Letosfsky has responded:

Eva et al:

This question is being posted around in several email lists, to which I respond loudly and clearly:

People have reported that they are not clear where I stand on public funding for a Twins stadium, specifically the current proposal. Let it be known that:

I oppose a publicly funded stadium such as that currently proposed by the Twins and Hennepin County. I would oppose any stadium proposal that is a bad deal for Minneapolis taxpayers. I want a privately funded stadium for the Twins: not one
that imposes a tax without a referendum as required by state law.

Additionally, I have a long track record of holding government bodies accountable. Readers may recall that I was one of the leaders of Progressive Minnesota's 1997 ballot initiative that limited Minneapolis's financial involvement in a stadium to $10 million without a further referendum. Also recall that that same year,
Progressive Minnesota put forward a ballot initiative to expand the city's civil rights ordinance, so that it covered the Police Department. This passed with 67% of the vote. Both are ordinance changes that I'm proud to have been a part of.

Keep those questions coming!!

Cara Letofsky
Candidate, Minneapolis City Council 2nd Ward
DFL/Labor endorsed
612-724-5163

Harriet Miers and Intelligent Design Creationism

It seems the website of the church that Harriet Miers goes to links to one of the goofiest of the Young Earth Creationists. Hat Tip: Lippard Blog.

John Jordan is huffing and puffing here.

I fully expect my questions to be asked of Harriet Miers when her confirmation hearings come up. They won't be as blatant as I've put them but you know that through lawyerly wording they'll be asking those very questions.

One as to wonder what America has come to when you can't even believe the same as the vast majority of their fellow citizens on this subject. It's not like it's an out of the mainstream idea, it's taught in churches across our country every Sunday and believed by people from all walks of life - including at least 40% of scientists.

The true Intolerant in our society mock those beliefs and those who hold them. You're not as smart as them because you don't believe their "evidence" (Where's the fossil record? It doesn't exist. Explain why life came from non-life and it's never been able to be demonstrated and observed, as science demands of science...and many more questions).


I wonder if Jordan seriously thinks the fossil record doesn't exist. He goes off half cocked on his blog at times. The post where he called for the tarring and feathering of John Knight is one example.

To that blogger, it's "troubling" that Miers would dare to believe as traditional Christianity has taught for 2000 years.

To this blogger, it's troubling that we could see Senators creating a new litmus test - dare to believe in your bible and you're unqualified to hold any appointed position in government.

That, my friend, is very, very troubling.


Thomas de Zengotita at Huffington Post discusses Mier's views on creationism. PZ Myers at Pharyngula doesn't think it's a big deal - but does merit a question or two.

I think it's reasonable to ask Miers what she thinks about the creationist cases that have come before the Supreme Court. It really doesn't matter whether she understands the evolutionary theory.

Scott Persons and Lyndale Neighborhood Association's Missing 82K

I went fishing for more information on the allegations on Minneapolis Upside Down and Stop Scott on the Minneapolis Issues list. Wendy Pareene (better known as Wendy Wilde) was the board member of Lyndale Neighborhood who wrote the letter according to one source.

I have contacted Wendy to get the scoop. Wendy Pareene has several posts about this topic in May and June 2003 on the Minneapolis issues list.

[Mpls] Neighborhood associations - follow the money - uh...
Wendy Introwitz Pareene qp@visi.com
Sat May 31 23:34:01 2003

This link is to the charities division of the Minnesota attorney general's office for one Minneapolis neighborhood. I don't know about other neighborhood assns... but this one is certainly an eye-opening example. Let's follow the money down the yellow brick road to your tax bill... got your ruby red slippers?

A 1 year budget of $450,000+ about $200,000 goes to staff salaries, bennies, office space for the staff, phone bills ($8000 for 1 year?). $82,000 gets written off because NRP refuses to cover these expenses for whatever reason(?). That leaves... about $120,000 for actual projects/programs for this neighborhood.

So... spend $300,000 to provide $120,000 in programs for the neighborhood. This is a good thing?

Don't misunderstand... it is a GOOD thing for the city to let neighborhoods decide how to spend municipal money in their area. BUT... why doesn't Mpls just tell the neighborhoods... okay... here's $200,000 for your neighborhood... hold one big meeting with all the neighbors, vote on what you want to spend it on, and we'll cut the checks and send them out. Done. No extra layers of beaurocracy. No office building... no staff... no benefits... no $5000 in meeting expenses... no $8000 phone bills... and NO $82,000 write off... and our property tax bills don't have to go up to pay for such foolish waste.

How are the people running these orgs in any real way qualified to do so? Are they successful business owners who know how to run a $450,000 dollar per year business successfully? Or are they (in some cases I have seen) career beaurocrats used to paychecks from government bodies who use neighborhood assn as as a way to get their hands on more government money and hire their friends and make themselves feel powerful?

What kind of business could operate this way for long?

Wendy Introwitz Pareene
South Minneapolis


[Mpls] neighborhood assn - 35w access - WHERE'S THE MONEY
Wendy Introwitz Pareene qp@visi.com
Tue Jun 3 07:48:01 2003

Doug, I sat on the board, on the exec committee and on the project fund
committee at the time the $82,000 was written off. I've spoken to highest officials at NRP and the atty gen's office about it... tried to convince the board to look more closely into what was going on financially... to no avail. You did a good job of trying to spin the numbers, though!

There really was only $127,000 spent on community projects... there really was an $82,000 write off that NRP refused to pay for... there really was $8000 spent on the phone bill for one year...

Even the $5000 meeting expense is ridiculous... when my boss calls a meeting, he doesn't provide snacks and drinks... he doesn't rent a special place or have a "candle lighting" and special, paid "mediators..." he just calls a meeting... we sit there without snacks till it is done... and we go.
NO ADDED EXPENSE.

The same person who managed (?) this half-million dollar per year budget is the same one who has been the most vocal about pushing through the Access project.

Wendy Introwitz Pareene
South Minneapolis


This is another reason why I oppose NRP.

The Minneapolis Observer has an excellent account of the 10th Ward Debate last night.

The Star Tribune has given up covering Minneapolis local politics.

Monday, October 10, 2005

DC Political Report on Tinklenberg

Reposted on the DCPolitical Report blog here.

Self Delusion: Congressional candidate Jay Esmay (R-MN) is convinced that 2004 congressional nominee Patty Wetterling (DFL-MN) will abandon her underdog campaign for the U.S. Senate and make a second attempt to represent Minnesota's sixth congressional district. Democratic Farm Labor Party congressional chair Greg Hansen however dismisses such thoughts as self-delusions. Hansen says that Republicans are obsessing on Wetterling because they are reluctant to deal with former transportation commissioner Elwyn Tinklenberg's (DFL-MN) candidacy.


Greg Hansen is wrong. Tinklenberg is going to have trouble getting the DFL base to vote for him. Tinklenberg is spending lots of time schmoozing the lobbyists in Washington, and not spending time talking to people in the district.

The first point Tinklenberg made when he announced was that he supported the Federal Marriage Amendment and that he was "pro-life" whatever that means.

In 2002, Janet Robert ran for the seat - running as an extreme anti-choice candidate (Robert opposes stem cell research and emergency contraception). Janet trailed Republican Mark Kennedy 65-35. When Wetterling ran against incumbent Kennedy, she got 47 percent of the vote - she was within 8 points of beating him (big difference from 30 points). Wetterling ran as pro-choice and opposing the Federal marriage amendment.

The Wind Beneath the Right Wing gives the conventional wisdom among the DCCC.

This move is particularly interesting because Tinklenberg is a conservative Democrat who opposes abortion, gun control, and gay marriage. The other Democrat hoping to replace Mark Kennedy is Scott Mortensen. Mortensen is much more in line with national Democrats on these issues as he supports abortion and gay marriage. However, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee has lined up behind Tinklenberg. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) has done so as well with a $2,000 contribution.


Tinklenberg does more than oppose gay marriage. Tinklenberg supports the Federal Bachmann amendment - which not only bans gay marriage, but also civil unions, domestic partnership benefits and other "legal equivalents". Tinklenberg's staff person told me that Tinklenberg supports civil unions - and that gay relationships should get treated equitably under civil law - but he opposes gay marriage in his church. If that's the case, then Tinklenberg needs to correct the record. He has chosen not to do so.

Conservatives - such as Vice President Cheney and Bob Barr (DOMA chief author in the US House) oppose this amendment. Vice President Cheney has made a point of publically disagreeing with President Bush on this issue.

Democrats are realizing that they cannot elect the Howard Dean-style Democrats, especially in a congressional district that voted for President Bush 57-42.


Howard Dean opposes gay marriage. He supports civil unions.

The problem with this analysis, is Janet Robert ran for this seat - against Kennedy - and ran as a strong anti-abortion candidate. I'm not clear what Janet's positions were on gay issues. However as owner of Air America Minnesota, she has a ban on gay topics on her station without prior approval. Janet Robert's major initiative now, besides Air America Minnesota, is Democrats for Life. Janet Robert lost to Kennedy - 65-35 or by a 30 point margin. When the pro-choice, Emily's List endorsed, and Human Rights Campaign endorsed Patty Wetterling ran against Kennedy, Kennedy won by less than 10 points, and Wetterling did better than Kerry did in that district. If opposing the Leviticus Crowd position on social issues was what was hurting democrats in the 6th district, Robert would have done better than Wetterling.

The 6th district went for Jesse Ventura in 1998 - and remember when the Defense of Marriage Act was brought up in the candidate debate, while both Coleman and Humphrey had weasle words, Jesse Ventura's message was direct: Jesse described his friends who had been together 30 years, and how one had trouble visiting the other in the hospital when the other was seriously ill. Jesse said "that's wrong. Love is bigger than Government." Jesse's clear and direct message on this didn't hurt him.

In my opinion a gun control position will hurt a democrat big time in the 6th district, but a pro-choice or being in favor of treating gays as full citizens - in the way Jesse Ventura did will not hurt a Democratic candidate.

The only house democrat in Minnesota to lose a seat in 2004 was Rebecca Otto of Stillwater (in the 6th district). Otto supported the Bachmann amendment to take the amendment off the table. What happened was this vote supressed her base.

Attack Blogs Go After Scott Persons

I'm no fan of 10th ward candidate Scott Persons. However I'd like to see the person behind the Stop Scott blog identify themselves. The Stop Scott blog is an anonymous blog going after Scott Persons who is running for 10th ward city council. However I don't like anonymous blogs that do this sort of thing. The question is whether these blogs are associated with a specific campaign. If the stopscott blog is associated with Scott Person's opponent, Ralph Remington, that looks bad. I don't think the blog is associated with Remington. (UPDATE: It's definitely not Remington's campaign. Wendy Wilde is behind the blog)

This "Stop Scott" blog attributes something to Lloydletta that I don't recall writing. It was from a post where I quoted Ralph Remington (Scott Person's opponent) going after Scott.

Minneapolis Upside Down - an anonymous blog, has a claim about Scott Persons acting inappropriately when active with the Lyndale Neighborhood Association:

Many have asked for more detail on our allusion to $83,000 that disappeared from Lyndale neighborhood Association while Person's was president. After a little digging, this is what we know.

Sometime in 2003, we believe, a prominent neighborhood resident who was an LNA board member, sent a five page letter detailing improprieties in LNA to board members, the mayor, the Neighborhood Revitalization Plan (NRP), and the Secretary of State. The letter was reportedly circulated and discussed in the neighborhood. It was also sent to the Southwest Journal, but no story resulted.

The letter discusses, in part, $83,000 (actually closer to $82,000) written off by the board of LNA soon after Scott Persons left the office of president. Reportedly, NRP refused to cover these expenditures made during the Person's reign at LNA, and the neighborhood had to eat it as a "change to fund balance." Some claim that Persons later carried out a smear campaign against individuals who challenged him on the write-off.

We weren't there, have never seen a copy of the aforementioned letter, and have no idea how this $82,000 was actually spent. Others have picked up this thread, already teasing out more details. We would love to see the letter and will post new information here if possible.

We bet that, over in Lyndale, there are people that can tell you a lot more about these events, including Scott Persons. Perhaps those over in the 10th Ward should ask him about it when he comes a knocking.


I've contacted the Persons campaign and talked with Corrine. She was not on the Lyndale Board so can't speak to that - but will get someone from the Lyndale Neighborhood association board to call me back with more details. The question is whether this is a disgruntled board member trying to harm Scott Persons, or whether this is a legitimate issue. The only way to get behind this is to talk with several board members and get their recollections on this.

I'd be interested in talking to any people who know more about this one.

UPDATE: The Stop Scott blog does provide some evidence of the 82K Lyndale Neighborhood Association writeoff.

UPDATE: Wendy Wilde has acknowledged being behind the Stop Scott blog.

Former Rep. John Jordan Flip Flops

Here.

First John says, referring to John Knight and other stadium tax opponents:

But I guarantee you this - the day the Twins leave the state these people would be run out with them. And if that ever happens, I will lead the public trial and tar and feathering of these short sighted people.


Then he says:

I'm not personally proposing to run you out of town. Please don't make things up to support your cause.


Which is it John? I would think this was just rhetorical excess. Kind of like Booker T Hodges saying on Cable Access TV that we need to "kill the house negro" - referring to Council Member Don Samuels. This wasn't a serious threat - but Don Samuels took the threat seriously - and got the show shut down for a while because of this.

A second example when he talks about Harriet Miers:

Her mushy record, sometimes conservative, sometimes not created in me angst that I didn't believe we ought to be feeling considering Bush's promise to bring us a strict constructionist nominee.

. . .

One of the volunteers on my team and his wife recently moved here from Dallas and guess who they were good friends with at their church, the Valley View Christian Church.

Harriet Miers. The Harriet Miers.

I asked questions - lots of them. What about abortion? What about the Dallas City Council race and the gay rights survey she took. With these two questions as well as other questions, Miers came down as a solid conservative. The media wasn't portraying her accurately and she's been unable to answer them based on her position now as the nominee.

But conservative she is, according to these two friends of hers. And given that I trust the word of my fellow churchgoers and volunteers, this morning I am feeling much better about her conservative beliefs.


A commenter said:

That is made clear that you felt it necessary to talk to some of her fellow church-going folk to see if she is the real deal as far as abortion and being anti-gay.


Jordan seemed to backtrack:

You're not very good at getting it right. So far, you've made lots of assumptions that aren't true. In this case, they came to me, I didn't go to them. Once they did, I asked questions. And it was fair to ask about these issues since they'd been in the news and the media seemed to be reporting all sorts of wild, contradictory things. Apparently I should have asked these friends of her - "tell me about her judicial philosphy but don't tell me what you know about her beliefs...I don't want to know..." That would be stupid.


I asked if he was upset by the answer where she said gays should be treated as equals by government.

He responded:

Every citizen should be treated as equals under law. That's what she said, that's what I believe.


Then Jordan brings up the USQueers story. If you don't know the story, here's a summary with links to the Culture and Family Institute story.

What's rather ironic is that people criticized me because while I wrote B Alan Ross asking him to take the offensive page down, I did not favor the government banning Ross from having a website. The page was meant as a parody of the Nurenburg Files webpages - which crossed out the names of abortion doctors when they got murdered.

I feel the same way about John Jordan's statement about tarring and feathering John Knight is a bit over the top - but I don't think Knight should take it seriously. I certainly don't think the government should shut down John Jordan's blog over this statement.

Sunday, October 09, 2005

MDE Puts out the Opposition Research on Patty Wetterling

Patty Wetterling makes her announcement. An opposition research dump shows up on Michael Brodkorb's blog.

A while back, I asked Michael Brodkorb in a post to the St Paul Issues list, whether he was Minnesota Democrats Exposer (MDE) and whether he posted some opposition on Chris Coleman using the name "Michael Nelson". Brodkorb's response was truly Clintonian:

I have no idea who sent emails from mikey1989_179 ( at ) hotmail.com to the SPIF as Michael Nelson.

If the dates of the emails from Michael Nelson cited by Ms. Young are accurate, I was in the employment of the Republican Party of Minnesota and not the Campaign for St. Paul's Future.

As the former communications and opposition research director for the Republican Party of Minnesota, Ms. Young's public speculation that I am behind Minnesota Democrats Exposed is neither original or new. The individual or individuals behind Minnesota Democrats Exposed have made it abundantly clear that the true identity of Minnesota Democrats Exposed will never be revealed or confirmed.

I and others can deny being Minnesota Democrats Exposed, as has been done, until we are blue in the face. But until the real person or people behind Minnesota Democrats Exposed comes forward, something which they claim they will never do, the denials will be questioned.

To my knowledge, I have never met or spoken with Ms. Young, but for some reason I have become the latest target du jour. I chose a career in politics to engage in a public debate and I encourage anyone, including Ms. Young to contact me directly at (612) 618-1168 or via email, or indirectly on the complete SPIF if they have any questions or comments about the Campaign for St. Paul's Future.


Michael Brodkorb hasn't been posting on the St Paul Issues list since.

Dan Dobson's Challenge to Hennepin County Board Chair Mike Opat

Originally posted on the Minneapolis Issues list by Dan Dobson of the No Stadium Tax Coalition:

In Saturday's Pioneer Press' story by Patrick Sweeney and Aron Kahn, about how Gov. Pawlenty might try and get the Twins to come to Saint Paul, there was a very interesting comment by Hennepin County Commissioner Mike Opat, the architect of the Twins - Hennepin Co. stadium plan.

Commissioner Opat said that if the legislature requires Hennepin County to hold a referendum on the proposed sales tax increase, to fund the Twins new stadium, AS STATE LAW REQUIRES, he would pull his stadium plan from consideration, rather than comply
with state law.

From the Pioneer Press:

Pawlenty's mention of a Twins ballpark for St. Paul reflects legislative opposition to the Minneapolis proposal, which calls for the Hennepin County Board to impose a 0.15 percent countywide sales tax. County Board Member Mike Opat, who negotiated the stadium plan with the Twins, said Friday that the board would drop the ballpark proposal rather than put the tax to a vote of residents.

"Voters would not receive all pertinent information that board members had when making their decision", Opat said, adding that elected officials should not "defer tough decisions to voters."


Commissioner Opat says he opposes a public referendum because, "Voters would not receive all pertinent information that board members had".
However Commissioner Opat's website purportedly has all the information
about the Twins - Hennepin County Stadium. (See "related Links").

So my question for Commissioner Opat is, what "pertinent information" did the Hennepin County Board receive, or did he receive privately from the Twins or Twins management, that is so critical or important, that he would rather cancel the Twins Stadium deal, rather than share this information with the public?

Commissioner Opat please tell us, what "pertinent information" that you are referring to and not sharing with the public.

Dann Dobson
No Stadium Tax Coalition
Saint Paul


Good question. If Mike Opat publically responds, I'll post the response here.