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Saturday, October 29, 2005

Chuck Muth: Dobson the Biggest Loser Regarding the Miers Nomination

From DC Confidential:


The biggest loser in the Harriet Miers fiasco wasn't Harriet Miers. Far from it. In the long run, she'll come out on top for doing the right thing for all concerned. And who knows, perhaps the president will nominate her for a vacancy on a lower court in which the entire conservative movement will rally to her side.

No, the biggest loser was James Dobson.

Dobson got either buffaloed or bought off, figuratively speaking, by the White House into supporting the Miers nomination from Day One. While almost every other conservative political leader, including social conservatives, saw this nomination as problematic, the Focus on the Family founder continued to shill for the White House and the Republican National Committee.

While conservative activists who have been fighting the judicial nominations fight in the trenches for years dug in their heels and made a heroic stand against the Miers confirmation, Dobson went AWOL. Some might even say he "deserted" to the other side.

And now that the battle is over, Dobson is shucking and jiving, trying to get himself back on the right side of the Right.

"I believe the president has made a wise decision in accepting Harriet Miers' withdrawal as a nominee to the Supreme Court," Dobson said yesterday. Of course, just three weeks ago he was touting how "wise" a decision he thought President Bush had made in selecting her. This guy doesn't know which side he's on.

"In recent days I have grown increasingly concerned about her conservative credentials," the Johnny-come-lately continued. "Based on what we now know about Miss Miers, it appears that we would not have been able to support her candidacy."

In "recent days"? What took him so long? The rest of us raised concerns IMMEDIATELY. And now that the nomination has been withdrawn, Dobson *finally* announces he wouldn't have been able to support her? Talk about Monday Morning Quarterbacking.

Dobson's early support for Miers looked extremely suspicious. And his belated opposition, after the horse had already left the barn, looks, at best, opportunistic. Dobson blew this one big time, and he lost a LOT of support and credibility among social conservatives for "selling out" and taking a powder when going got tough. It's fair to say that James Dobson's political influence has been significantly reduced over this one.

And I can't really say that bothers me.

Chuck is a card carrying member of the Vast Right Wing Conspiracy.

Kathleen Blatz Mentioned as a Supreme Court Nominee

Over at Republican Minnesota. During the 2000 Republican convention, Greg Wersal was running for a judge position - and he spoke to the convention. Governor Tim Pawlenty (then a house leader) said publicly that he thought the Republican Party should avoid getting into endorsing Judges. Here's the text of an anti-Blatz flyer that was passed around at the 2000 Republican convention.

Kathleen Blatz: Why We Shouldn't Endorse Her

Kathleen Blatz is judicial activism embodied. The Judicial Nominating Committee is going to recommend her for endorsement. But our Party should not endorse her.

1. Socially Liberal -- Socially Unacceptable:

Kathleen Blatz authorized the Supreme Court decision creating a "right of privacy" under Minnesota law in 1998. The "right of privacy" has been used by courts to justify abortion on demand, the decriminalization of prostution, medically assisted suicide and gay marriage. Kathy Blatz opened the door to all of
these things.

2. Judicial Activism -- Judicial Insanity:

Kathleen Blatz is judicial activism embodied. The Supreme Court, in several recent decisions, has asserted that it has the power to do whatever it thinks is "right", even if state statures or the Constitution would produce the opposite result.. Marshall Tanick, a respected First Amendment lawyer, has not only called the recent decisions of the court judicial activism, he has said that this activism can be "attributed to the vibrancy and vigor of Chief Justice Blatz." Such vigor we don't need. A District Court Judge, who now has an ethical complaint filed against him because he dared to speak up, called the recent decisions of the Supreme Court "judicial legislation."

3. Soft on Crime:

Kathleen Blatz voted in favor of vastly expanding Miranda in 1999, which means that more criminals -- more criminals who have actually confessed to their crime -- will go free. No wonder Minnesota has the lowest imprisonment rate of any state!

4. Rigging Judicial Elections -- Canon 5:

Kathleen Blatz was one of the judges that created rules (Canon 5) in 1998 that prevent judicial candidates from attending and saying anything at all at a political convention. The purpose of these rules is to maintain a judiciary that is unaccountable to the public. The purpose of the rules is to defeat the democratic election system and disenfranchise voters. The Republican Party is currently suing in Federal Court to have the Canon 5 rules declared unconstitutional infringements of free speech; yet the Judicial Nominating Committee is recommending Kathy Blatz for endorsement!!! Why would the Republican Party ever endorse a judge like Kathleen Blatz, who seeks to defeat the legitimate right of all Republicans to get information on candidates and participate in the election process?

5. Gay Marriage:

Will Kathy Blatz give us "gay marriage"? The issue of "gay marriage" will soon be in Minnesota courts. Vermont, by order of its Supreme Court, has already created gay marriage. Gay couples from Minnesota will soon get married in Vermont and return to Minnesota and demand recognition of their marriages. As noted earlier, Kathleen Blatz authorized the decision creating a Minnesota "right of privacy". And the "right of privacy" is the door through which others have asserted a right to "gay marriage."

But there is more. When she was in the Legislature in 1993, Kathy Blatz voted to give gays special protections under the law. She voted to expand the Minnesota Human Rights Act to protect a person's sexual orientation and affection preference. She voted in favor of the bill three times. She voted to pass the bill out of the Judiciary Committee even though the bill contained no protection for children. Only after the bill was returned to the House did others change the bill to eliminate "affectional preferences" and to specifically state that sexual relations between adults and children were not protected by the act. Do we really want Kathleen Blatz deciding whether to impose gay marriage on the people of Minnesota?

6. Religious Freedom:

Kathleen Blatz has attacked the fundamental right to freedom of religion. In 1999, in a bizarre ruling which she authorized, Kathleen Blatz siad (sic) that the First Amendment guarantees of freedom of religion did not apply to a religious ceremony preformed (sic) by a religious leader for the purpose of restoring an individual's soul. It is unbelievable! Do we really want a judge like Kathleen Blatz on our court?


Prepared and Paid for by Corwin Hulbert, Delegate House District 46A, 7710 36th AV N., Crystal, MN 55427

KKK Rallying for the Texas Bachmann Amendment

Mark Hanson posted here earlier about the KKK rallying for the Texas Bachmann amendment. To their credit, some Texas Bachmann amendment supporters, including legislator Warren Chissum, publicly repudiated the Klan.

I hate to say that we don't need friends like that, but we don't need friends like that," said state Rep. Warren Chisum, a Pampa Republican leading the push to pass Proposition 2, which would define marriage in the constitution as a union between one man and one woman.

"I want nothing to do with the KKK," he said.

In Minnesota, Family Research Council Executive Director, Tony Perkins was the keynote speaker at the 2005 Bachmann amendment rally. Several years ago Tony Perkins paid 82 K for Klan leader David Duke's mailing list. He also spoke to the racist Council of Conservative Citizens.

The Council of Conservative Citizens isn't your run of the mill group. This is from their manifesto:

We believe that the United States derives from and is an integral part of European civilization and the European people and that the American people and government should remain European in their composition and character.

'We therefore oppose the massive immigration of non-European and non-Western peoples into the United States that threatens to transform our nation into a non-European majority in our lifetime ... We also oppose all efforts to mix the races of mankind

The Dump Bachmann blog called on Michele Bachmann to publicly repudiate Tony Perkins. The press release got published as a viewpoint article in the Stillwater Gazette.

I said then:

While we don't necessarily believe Sen. Bachmann would embrace such racist organizations as the CCC, it's clear that as recently as four years ago, her supporter Tony Perkins has. Sen. Bachmann should do the right thing and disassociate herself from Tony Perkins and his racist friends. And the next time he is invited to town, Minnesotans should roll up the welcome mat.

I have challenged Chuck Darrell from Minnesotans for Marriage to make a public statement repudiating Tony Perkins. He has refused to do so.

Friday, October 28, 2005

How many more days until November 8th?

Friday night's Almanac (10/28) devoted the first half hour to a St. Paul mayoral debate (he yawns).

It's probably the longest time I've spent listening to Chris Coleman, the presumptive winner of this titanic battle.

I'm no great fan of Mayor Kelly, but the alternative doesn't sound very good to me. If I lived in St. Paul, I'd think of it as a mini-version of the 04 presidential race. Mayor Kelly is no prize, but how can somebody support a grade C alternative? If asked, I could recite all of the big-city liberal mantras and buzz words. Chris Coleman does not present them convincingly. I'm not totally sure he believes what he's saying.

Mayor Kelly went after him right away (almost before a question was asked) re: how Mr. Coleman is going to pay for everything that has been promised. There was no candid answer to that question. It's a little bit like the Mn Senate DFL strategy at the Capitol last spring. They kept building the case (effectively, for the most part) for some ambitious spending increases, and Dean Johnson refused to name the funding source. He left that to Larry Pogemiller to announce at a later date.

What I got from Mr. Coleman's remarks is that he'll win the election, and then have a bunch of meetings (with whom??) in December to parse this out. Oh, and he'll also lobby the state and federal governments to help foot the bill. That 'plan' seems to be the reliable answer for metrosexual liberals this year (like Peter McLaughlin).

I think I'll buy some real estate, and finance it based on what I think I can get my friends and relatives to chip in. But I'll check on that after I sign the papers.

Almanac will feature a Minneapolis mayor's debate next Friday evening, November 4th

Scott Persons Stonewall DFL Questionaire

Stonewall DFL endorsed Scott Persons for 10th ward city council after the primary. I requested a copy of Stonewall's questionaire for Persons. Opponent Ralph Remington has posted his Stonewall DFL questionaire on his website.

Stonewall's Endorsements for other races are head scratchers. For example, Lisa McDonald has a long record in support of the GLBT community, but Stonewall DFL didn't endorse her, and didn't even give her an acceptable rating. The reason? Lisa has a history of raising money for the Independence Party.

Here's Scott Persons Stonewall DFL Questionaire.

All Candidates

1) What experience do you have with GLBT issues and the GLBT community?

I supported and volunteered for Scott Dibble when he ran as my state representative in 2000. I chose to live and volunteer in a diverse community (Lyndale Neighborhood) which includes many GLBT residents. My wife and I will raise our family to honor and celebrate diversity. I am also aware of the benefit the GLBT community brings to the city and the region. Richard Florida’s work on studying the creative class notes the creative innovation in a particular city is directly related to a city’s GLBT friendliness. In short, Minneapolis benefits immensely from our GLBT friends and neighbors.

2) How do you think GLBT people in committed relationships should be granted equal legal protection as heterosexual couples? Why do you prefer that method to others?

Through state statute, I think it is the best way for residents across the state to get the protection they deserve.

3) What are your priorities for the office you are running for?

I am running for the open 10th Ward City Council seat that encompasses the Uptown and Lyn Lake areas of South Minneapolis. My priorities are to maintain the greatness of our neighborhoods, which we have worked so diligently to build into vibrant and livable places. I am a transit investment advocate, I entered this race was because of the opportunities we have to expand transit service in Minneapolis due to the success of LRT. I also believe we need an innovative and accountable city government that is a national leader in service delivery for our residents.

4) Are there any GLBT issues that you have questions about or need assistance with?
The PNP drug issue in the GLBT community.

5) If endorsed by Stonewall DFL will you actively list that endorsement in campaign materials? If not, why?
I would be honored to receive Stonewall DF endorsement and would actively list your endorsement.

6) Do you plan on abiding by the DFL endorsement if there is one for your race?
I am currently seeking the DFL endorsement in my race. I am promoting the caucuses in all my campaign materials and encouraging all 1300 10th Ward caucus attendees from last year to attend city caucuses on March 1st. I will vigorously pursue all available endorsements in my race (except other political parties) but no one endorsement decision will cause me to end or continue my campaign.

The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Friends Caucus of the Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party of Minnesota

7) Would you be willing to work with other elected officials in surrounding communities to establish a metro-wide or multi-city domestic partnership registry?


8) Are you in favor of providing domestic partner health care benefits for city employees similar to what has occurred in the private sector in most of the Fortune 500 companies? If your city does not currently offer such benefits, would you introduce/support legislation to bring about such benefits?


9) How do you propose to address the current drug crisis (PNP or so-called "party and play" drugs) in the GLBT community?
I am not familiar with the PNP issue and would like to schedule an opportunity to meet with someone to discuss this issue and how the City of Minneapolis could be more effective at combating PNP.

10) What would you do in your office, if elected, to bring attention back to those people living with HIV or AIDS?

HIV/AIDS is a very serious public health issue and we must always remain vigilant in educating residents about the risks of unprotected sex and the importance of getting tested. As an elected official in Minneapolis I will work with our city health department to insure that we are using city resources to educate residents about using safe sex practices. As we merge the city health department into the county in the next five years I will ensure that we don’t lose any HIV/AIDS education capacity in that transition.

11) What would you do to improve community relations and encourage diversity in the Police and Fire Departments with respect to better understanding of the GLBT community?

Minneapolis is a city that values and celebrates it diversity and celebration of that diversity extends to our Police and Firs departments in Minneapolis. The hiring of Bonnie Bleskachek as our new Fire chief is a major step forward and makes Minneapolis a national leader. In Minneapolis we must be constantly aware of the diverse community we serve including the GLBT community.

12) What would you do to combat hate crimes against members of the GLBT community?

Our first priority as a city is to ensure that hate crimes laws that we have are being enforced on our streets and prosecuted in our courts. When politicians use anti-gay rhetoric to win votes an environment of intolerance is created on our streets and neighborhoods. I will work with our chief of police to ensure that hate rime incidents are fully reported to the community through CODEFOR and that we are responding aggressively to these incidents.

13) How would you reach out to members of the GLBT business community to encourage their participation in city planning and economic development?

Minneapolis has a vibrant and growing GLBT business community and the 10th Ward is one of the most active GLBT business areas. I will work diligently with our existing GLBT businesses to make sure they get the services they need from the city. I will also work to attract more GLBT business owners to our Ward, Lake Street is a continually evolving corridor that needs more creative and innovative businesses in the years to come. GLBT residents are already active on our neighborhood boards and zoning committees that consider new business proposals. We should be recruiting city planning commission members and other citywide committee members from these invaluable citizen groups.

You may e-mail the completed questionnaire to Paul Skrbec at or bring it with you to your candidate forum/screening. Whenever possible an electronic version of your questionnaire is preferred in advance of your screening.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Matt Abe Loses His MOB Teeshirt

Matt Abe has an excellent and complete summary of the SD 43 Chamber of Commerce Debate between Judy Johnson and Terri Bonoff.

Intelligent design (ID) - I'd bet my MOB t-shirt that Eva Young threw this one in. Johnson is relatively new to the ID/creationism/evolution debate. She believes that "all points of view" should be taught, but also believes that curriculum decisions should be made locally. Bonoff called ID/creationism a faith matter best taught at home or in parochial schools, but not in public schools.

Matt Abe is wrong on this one. I did not put this question in there. I typically refer to this an Intelligent Design Creationism.

This has been a huge issue in the Minnetonka School Board Race. Tonka Focus has a run down of what the Minnetonka school board candidates said at the candidate forums on the issue of Intelligent Design Creationism. Intelligent Design Creationist School Board member - and advocate, Dave Eaton supports Borowski and Bowe:

Paul Borowski did not participate in the TonkaFocus Candidates' Q & A
Paul Borowski, at Clear Springs Forum, 9-27-05: He’s done a lot of research on Intelligent Design in the past couple of weeks because this question came up in another forum. He thinks as it relates to the debate of whether it’s science or not, it remains to be seen. He will defer to the State of MN and several other states that have taken up this issue with their legislatures and their departments of education. The State of Minnesota, he believes, has issued recent standards that allow teachers to present this issue as part of the theory of evolution. As a contrary to the theory of evolution, whether or not it’s specifically intelligent design that they’re teaching or presenting, it’s another viewpoint. He believes, that given the fact that the state has endorsed it, if indeed they view it as a science issue, then it certainly should be allowed as a science issue.
Paul Borowski, at LWV Forum, 10-11-05: Doesn’t have an issue with the fact that ID would be taught in terms that our students are aware that it exists. He doesn’t think there is anything out there that our children shouldn’t be aware of. The debate centers around whether or not it should be in the science curriculum. Believes we have to determine that with the State Standards, and he supports them as written.
Paul Borowski, at the MHS PTSA Forum, 10-17-05: Doesn't believe in creationism in schools, contrary to rumor. The debate goes on - what is science, what isn't? We should abide by the state standards.

Mary Louise Bowe did not participate in the TonkaFocus Candidates' Q & A
Mary Louise Bowe, statement on her campaign web site: Today, Intelligent Design is not considered a scientific theory as is Darwin’s theory of evolution,
but the topic is now in the media daily and hotly debated. I would expect that it would come up in many class discussions especially when reviewing current events and certainly at the high school level. Having lively classroom discussions is part of the learning process, and creating a sense of curiosity and questions is important. I do not believe Intelligent Design should be implemented in a science curriculum as an alternative to other defined scientific theory.

MaryLouise Bowe, at Clear Springs Forum, 9-27-05: She finds this an interesting question that has come up a couple of times. This is a public school district and she believes in the separation of church and state. Until the State of MN mandates that we teach creationism or ID or other ideas like that within a science curriculum, she would not be in favor of it. She is pro-academic excellence and making sure that our students get the most rigorous education that they can experience at whatever level they are, and that’s what she would like to focus on as a candidate.
Mary Louise Bowe, LWV Forum, 10-11-05:This has been a terrific scare tactic during this campaign. ID has been in the media and very interesting. A lot of us are interested in reading about it and not very many of us can articulate clearly about ID and how it is different from creationism. As she understands it today, she doesn’t see it fitting into a science curriculum, but she’s very curious about it, hopes MHS students, at least, would be discussing ID and as time goes on, as a school board, if there are textbooks out there with curriculum not lining up together with intelligent design and the theory of evolution, that students could discuss both.
Mary Louise Bowe, at the MHS PTSA Forum, 10-17-05: It's an interesting question and a hot current topic. Does not see it as part of science curriculum; can't say what Board's role is since she's not on the Board. Your School Board listens to you so they should consider what you want.

Minnetonka School Board member, Dave Eaton's role in pushing for Intelligent Design Creationism to be included in the Minnesota Science Standards can be found at the Florida Citizens for Science site here.

The Commissioner of Education chose members from the larger committee to form the final writing committee. Of the twelve members selected, four were intelligent design proponents. The criteria for selection were never made public.

The writing committee edited the standards/benchmarks for clarity of language, creating bulleted lists, etc. Importantly, the writing committee could not add to, or delete from, the standards/benchmarks except to eliminate repetition or to create consistent language (e.g., always using "The student will.").

There was little debate on most of the standards including the History/Nature of Science. However, the ID proponents did try to add language to the 9-12 Life Science E standard to allow "alternative theories" to be taught. Additionally, they sought to have the language of 9-12 Life Science E Benchmark 4 changed as they felt that the language forced students to "accept" biological evolution. The writing committee accepted none of these edits and the final version of the science standards was sent to the Department of Education.

Before the legislative committee hearings, David Eaton, a member of the writing committee and treasurer of the Minnetonka, MN school board who is heavily active in the state’s intelligent design community, commissioned a poll by the Zogby group to assess the level of support in MN for "teaching the controversy". The Zogby survey was conducted February 13 and 14, 2004 after the standards and minority report had been delivered. The poll consisted of several questions; however, one question in particular was used in subsequent editorials and in the Senate and House hearings:

When Darwin's theory of evolution is taught in school, student should also learn how scientists continue to critically analyze aspects of evolutionary theory.

The results are dated February 17 (see this page) and were spun by the ID folks as supporting the inclusion of "alternative theories" in the science standards. Additionally, the intelligent design members of the writing committee sent a minority report (see this page), to the Department of Education and the two Minneapolis/St. Paul newspapers. This was intended to create the image of substantial disagreement over the teaching of evolution within the full committee and the writing committee. The report was signed by four members of the writing committee: David Eaton, Duane Quam, Kathryn Duffield, and Heather McKinley; however, Ms. McKinley did not attend any writing committee meetings or contribute to the writing committee discussions in any form.

David Strand - from Marriage Equality Minnesota, interviewed both candidates about the Bachmann amendment.

I spoke on the phone today with both Republican endorsed Judy Johnson and DFL endorsed Terri Bonoff who are the only two candidates running in Senate District 43.

Judy was very straightforward and said that she supports the amendment as she believes marriage is between a man and a woman. She did say that she believes interesting questions are being raised about the "legal equivalent" language and how ambigous it is. She said she has been honest with gay volunteers on her campaign about her position on this issue but if it was my primary issue of concern, I would be better off supporting her opponent.

So I called Terri Bonhoff, as Judy reccomended, and she confirmed she opposes the amendment without any of Judy's equivocation on the issue.

I contacted both candidates to confirm their positions. Judy said David had accurately conveyed her position, but she added that she had not signed the Pledge from the Minnesotans in Defense of Marriage yet. Terri said that David had accurately reflected her position.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Minnetonka School Board Race Heats Up

A major issue in the race is Creationism, with Intelligent Design Creationists denying they are creationists. From the strib:

Candidate Paul Borowski said there have been disheartening personal attacks.

"Some things are quoted out of context, like me wanting creationism in the
schools," he said. "I never said that," but he said his detractors have
been claiming that's his goal.

Borowski also said he has been unfairly labeled as a two-issue candidate --
opposing the International Baccalaureate at Minnetonka High School while
favoring instruction in "intelligent design" -- when he said he also has
spoken at length about drug and alcohol programs and budget concerns.

Intelligent design theory is creationism. Is Edwatch involved in this race?

BJ Hokanson on the Post Bulletin Wedding Announcement Policy

Brian Hokanson has some excellent posts which discuss some of the issues involved with the Rochester Post Bulletin policy. Brian was successful in getting a comment from the publisher of the Rochester Post Bulletin.

UPDATE: So - he says he made the decision in the early 1990's jointly with the publisher at the time (he was the managing editor then). Since I noticed that in his email, Losness used the phrase,

same-sex "marriage"

, I followed up by asking if the policy was thus based primarily on his personal beliefs. His response in full:

The policy is not based on my personal views. As I stated in the previous e- mail, I was not the publisher when the policy was made in the early '90s. I do, however, agree with basing the policy on the laws in the state of Minnesota on what is considered a legal marriage. I use quotes around the word "marriage" because the union in question is not recognized in the state of Minnesota.

In other news, readers can look forward to my forthcoming commentary on such issues as "euthanasia," "medicinal marijuana," and "fifth-degree assault."

There's some continuing discussion of this over on Jay Furst's Rochester Post Bulletin blog.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Get Out The Vote Efforts Building for the Texas version of a Bachmann marriage amendment

from the Associated Press

AUSTIN, Texas -- The Ku Klux Klan plans to rally in Austin to support the gay marriage amendment set for the Nov. 8 ballot.

The rally planned on the steps of city hall the Saturday before the election will urge voters to favor proposition 2.

However, some who support proposition 2 don't welcome the KKK's assistance.

One such person is Pastor Ryan Rush of Bannockburn Baptist Church.

Rush said that a group that would come in that is characterized as hateful and bigoted is not welcome in this city. He said he doesn't want the Klan as a partner on any cause.

MH - so, apparently Pastor Rush believes in degrees on hate and bigotry.

In a letter the Klan sent to the city, the group acknowledged that security will be an issue, noting the violence that erupted at a KKK rally and march to the capitol in Austin in 1983.

SD 43 Chamber of Commerce Debate

I stopped by to watch the Chamber of Commerce Debate between Judy Johnson and Terri Bonoff. They had similar positions on transportation. Both support more dollars for transportation projects, and both support both roads and transit as part of state transportation policy.

The candidates differed on whether state government should require energy companies (XCel etc) get a certain percentage of their energy from renewable sources. Johnson opposed this idea, Bonoff supported it.

The other area where they differed was on whether Intelligent Design Creationism should be taught in the public schools. In response to a question about "Intelligent Design", Johnson said that all points of view should be taught, though she did not say whether she thought Intelligent Design Creationism belonged in the biology curriculum. Johnson did make a point of calling Intelligent Design "creationism", which other Intelligent Design advocates try to deny. Bonoff said Intelligent Design was religious views and should not be part of the public school curriculum.

After the event, I talked to a writer for one of the local newspapers, who said she has been following my blog coverage of this race. That's nice to hear. This person mentioned that I should look into the Minnetonka School Board race. Intelligent Design Creationism is a major issue in that race. Creationist Minnetonka School Board member, Dave Eaton is NOT up for election this fall. There are other Intelligent Design creationism advocates running for school board seats in Minnetonka.

This was an excellent forum. Both candidates were respectful of each other. I hope other campaigns look at how both of these women are running their campaigns and take note of respectful ways to debate their differences.

I also had the opportunity to meet blogger, Matt Abe from North Star Liberty at this debate.

Thank you, Rosa Parks

I join with all Americans this week in giving thanks for the life and example of an ordinary woman who did something extraordinary.

Nobody should ever have to move to the back of the bus in this country. Rosa maintained her dignity and resolve under the worst conditions, and changed American history.

This past weekend I listened to a local talk radio conversation between Dave Thompson on AM1500 and Patrick Guerriero, national president of the Log Cabin Republicans. Patrick cannot be compared to Rosa (nor would he want that). He works for change as a calling and a profession, and goes at it with great tactical skills and a sophisticated support system. While Dave and Patrick had a detailed, rigorous exploration of difficult topics, they both took the high road when they disagreed, engaging each other with passion, respect, and no small amount of wit.

For one hour on a Sunday afternoon, Patrick maintained dignity and resolve under tough conditions, and when it was over labeled the debate a 'celebration of American democracy'. This is what he does every day of his life.

This contrasts with the words and actions of Cindy Sheehan, whom I often publicly mock. All of us have compassion for the families who have suffered directly because of war. All of us celebrate our First Amendment rights. But, I believe those rights also carry a responsibility to engage our fellow Americans in thoughtful, respectful debate. Publicity stunts and outrageous name calling have no proper place in our official public discourse. We're smarter than that.

To change hearts and minds, you can't just talk. You also have to listen. I found Patrick, in person and on the radio, to be an exceptional listener. It's hard to identify that trait in Cindy Sheehan.

Bravo to all of the heroes who speak out and listen every day with intelligence and skill, whether they're in the carpool, at the coffee shop, or on national television.

Thank you Rosa, for showing us the dignified, human way to do it.

Monday, October 24, 2005

Cindy Sheehan announces plans for another Democratic Party fundraiser.....

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Cindy Sheehan, the military mother who made her son's death in Iraq a rallying point for the anti-war movement, plans to tie herself to the White House fence to protest the milestone of 2,000 U.S. military deaths in Iraq.

"I'm going to go to Washington, D.C. and I'm going to give a speech at the White House, and after I do, I'm going to tie myself to the fence and refuse to leave until they agree to bring our troops home," Sheehan said in a telephone interview last week as the milestone approached.

Michael Brodkorb and Minnesota Democrats Exposed

Toby from DFL Blog was my source for the screen shot of the post where Michael Brodkorb signed his own name. Toby has a post today which gives further detail.

There are comments on Michael Brodkorb's post where he exposed himself.

Minnesota Democrats Exposed is a blog dedicated to a truthful discussion on the activities, statements and tactics of Minnesota Democrats.

I choose to exercise my First Amendment right to remain anonymous. Minnesota Democrats Exposed is, and always will be published anonymously. I will never confirm nor deny my true identity.

I have never used my right to remain anonymous as cover to post lies or false information.
10:56 PM

A Lloydletta reader sent me this:

Note that MDE basically admits he is Brodkorb by saying "I will never confirm nor deny my true identity."

Brodkorb has in the past denied many false identites:

"I am not Chris Tiedeman, but I did play him on TV."

"Before you even ask, I am not Randy Skoglund."

So MDE is more than willing to deny being Tiedeman or Skoglund. But ask him about Brodkorb and he reverts back to the "I'm not saying" defense.

Which really tells you everything you need to know.

I asked Michael Brodkorb whether he was Minnesota Democrats Exposed on the St Paul issues list. His denial was truly Clintonian. Blogger Berg - as is his wont, had a bit of a tantrum over this on the St Paul issues list. It was because I asked him whether he was the "Globber Berg" who had posted a comment on Lloydletta. A wrapup of the St Paul Issues list thread is available on Lloydletta here.

Developing. . .

Sunday, October 23, 2005

How Influencial are Political Bloggers?

Pam Spaulding has an interesting post on this topic.

I personally tend not to read the "big blogs" much. I find the blogs that have less readership tend to be more interesting. I'm not sure why that is.

When Aravosis started Americablog, it often had unique stories that were worth reading. He also covered gay stories very effectively, and also exposed the anti-gay theocrats. Now, he's just parroting talking points from the DNC. All Rove and Delay all the time.

Pam Spaulding has picked up the niche John Aravosis left behind. Pam knows what to do with a tip. I make Pam's House Blend a regular read. Pam holds Democrats accountable when they pull anti-gay crap. That's something few "progressives" do.

Lloydletta's Nooz Exclusive: Proof that Michael Brodkorb sends posts to Minnesota Democrats Exposed

A Lloydletta reader reads the Minnesota Democrats Exposed feed.

I love your blog, and I thought that I'd send you some proof that MDE is Michael Brodkorb.

Blogger has the ability to post via e-mail, something that I guess MDE uses because he posted the latest post about Pawlenty's website from his personal e-mail account. He quickly fixed it, but I use a browser that downloads the RSS as they come in, and I have what is clearly his signature (which he removed later). See the screen shot for proof (including his cell phone #).

Keep up the good work.

Proof that MDE is really Michael Brodkorb

Developing. . .

UPDATE: When I first posted this entry, Toby had asked me to keep his identity a secret. Shortly after I posted the screen shot, Toby added more context on his blog. Michael Brodkorb has now acknowledged that he is Minnesota Democrats Exposed.

See also: Is Michael Brodkorb the Elusive MDE?