Friday, November 9, 2018

Wildfire destroys California city

Climate change is real.

It appears as if a wildfire has completely destroyed the city of Paradise, California - population 30,000. This is unprecedented. There is no other instance in modern American history of a city that big being absolutely destroyed by a single event.

Residents did evacuate - but the city itself appears to be gone. To compare Paradise with cities in our area, it was about twice as big as Newport and two-thirds as big as Covington.

Elsewhere in California, other wildfires threaten other communities.

Warning signs loom for rural Republicans

To hear the right-wing media tell it, you'd think the Democrats are urban elites who don't do anything except sip lattes, ride around in limos, and dress up like million-dollar troopers. But I remember when the Democrats were portrayed as "golly shucks gee" rural hayseeds. I'm sure they will be again, as Tuesday's election shows serious warning signs ahead for rural Republicans.

Nationwide, rural congressional districts trended Democratic more than suburban and urban districts did - finally reversing what had been a pattern since 2000.

I also checked a few local elections and found that a Republican incumbent was defeated for Gallatin County Judge-Executive. This was completely ignored by our local media. They just cannot even conceptualize a Republican incumbent losing in rural Kentucky.

But it also happened in a few Kentucky House races in eastern Kentucky.

This rural trend back to the Democrats doesn't seem to affect places dominated by zillionaire ranchers - but it does seem to be happening in rural areas where most folks are of normal economic means and where the Democrats actually had prevailed until fairly recently. This may be a warning of what is to come. But there's a looooong way to go.

It might have helped Republicans if they hadn't let the mask slip by calling opponents a "mob."

Thursday, November 8, 2018

Campbell strongest county for Marsy's Law

On Tuesday, Kentucky voters voted on a ballot measure called Marsy's Law - which would amend the Kentucky Constitution to outline rights for crime victims.

I support victims' rights, but I voted for the measure only reluctantly. I had some concerns that the poorest crime victims wouldn't be represented as well as the rich. But as a whole, victims' rights is a sound premise - and perhaps that's why the Tea Party opposed the measure, as the Tea Party always opposes common sense. It's obvious that Kentucky gives more rights to hardcore criminals than it does to their victims, and that needs to change.

Voters approved the referendum overwhelmingly, though it lost in a few rural counties. And Campbell County gave the measure its highest percentage out of all of Kentucky's 120 counties, at 74%. I'm not sure why it did best here. The county's torrid history of covering up right-wing crimes because of the perpetrators' influence in the community may have been a factor.

However, the measure may be tossed because it was vaguely worded on the ballot.

Wednesday, November 7, 2018

Hamilton County Commission now all-Democratic

I have a hard time thinking of Cincinnati as a great Democratic stronghold, but Hamilton County was an absolute disaster for the Republicans in yesterday's election.

In keeping with Republicans' stunning underperformance locally (they lost our Kentucky House election by 20% too), yesterday's upset gave Democrats control of all 3 seats on Hamilton County Commission. We're talking about a commission that was all-Republican less than 20 years ago. When a Democrat won a seat in 2000 (after the 1996 stadium tax debacle), it was the first time a Democrat had won any seats there since 1964.

Plus, although Steve Chabot and Brad Wenstrup were reelected, they actually lost the Hamilton County portions of their districts handily.

Scott Walker defeated

America did it! By taking control of the U.S. House, voters yesterday put a check on right-wing thugocracy and spite. I have a right to expect it to stick this time.

But outside of Congress, one of the pelts I truly wanted to pick up was that of far-right Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker. I stayed up way past 2 AM, but Wisconsin came through!

Bye Scott, you idiot.

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

River City News falls on its face in Campbell County

The ridiculous assertion by the River City News that Charlie Coleman was Steve Pendery's real challenger has now fallen to rack and ruin, as Coleman has finished a distant third. This shouldn't be surprising, except for RCN acting so sure about Coleman's candidacy.

The Campbell County Democrats probably wish they put just a little more effort into local races, considering how close they came to defeating Brian Painter and Wil Schroder. For the record, I voted a straight Democratic ticket. I didn't even bother to memorize the party's candidates, because at this point, I figure they can run a sack of rocks and I'd still vote for them over any Republican.

GOP loses U.S. House!

Ladies and gentlemen, the U.S. House's long national nightmare is over.

After a slow night, MSNBC has just called the House for the Democrats - ending 8 years of Republican tyranny.

I wanted one thing tonight more than any other: Republicans losing the U.S. House. And I got it. This is significant because only the House can originate revenue bills. With this flip, the GOP's plans to gut Medicare, Social Security, Medicaid, and Obamacare are likely dead.

The mess made by Republicans will take multiple cycles to clean up, but as for now, you can blow a celebratory bubble!

Phil Moffett defeated

The Democrats have picked up at least 3 seats in the Kentucky House. One of the defeated Republicans is Phil Moffett - a longtime Tea Party favorite from Louisville - who lost by 8%.

The 2 other seats so far are in eastern Kentucky and aren't even that close. In addition, the Democrats may have picked up another seat in that region.

Kim Davis defeated

This is the first election result I'm able to report tonight, and it's from Rowan County, of all places.

Some of you forgot about Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis, who tarnished Kentucky's good name with her antigay extremism and her trips to Europe to promote right-wing laws there. Well, Davis has just been defeated for reelection.

Monday, November 5, 2018

Right-wing River City News tries to game local election

With mainstream media having abandoned northern Kentucky, fringe websites are swooping in to fill the void, and the River City News is at least as right-wing as any outlet it replaced.

The River City News reported today that Republican Campbell County Judge-Executive Steve Pendery's main challenger in tomorrow's election is Tea Party favorite Charlie Coleman. The site provided no polling data to back this up. The site treated Democrat Calvin Sidle as merely a third party candidate, even as Sidle runs on serious issues such as affordable housing and transit. Not only that, but Sidle was the Democratic candidate for U.S. House in 2016.

To relegate a Democrat to third party status is not only factually wrong, but also part of a new effort by local Republicans to try to convince Democratic voters that they might as well just pick their favorite Republican and vote for them instead. No dissent is to be tolerated. This is important because if the Democrats consistently come in third place, they would lose major party status in Kentucky, leaving the Republicans to fill both major party slots.

This isn't a problem we can just bubble away - though I know some of you will. I'm sure that tomorrow, as you're in the voting booth, you'll be blowing a huge bubble with your gum that bursts and sticks to your glasses. Barack Obama once urged, "Don't boo. Vote!" He might as well have just said, "Don't bubble. Vote!" But feel free to do both.

For the media to game our elections is dangerous. Judge-executive is one of our top local offices, and the public has a right to have leaders who will move the community forward, not backward.

The River City News isn't wrong at all when it says there's "an internal squabble on the county's political right." But if the Right is split perfectly down the middle, the opposition gets to prevail - unless we get instant runoff voting. We deserve better than the authoritarian government that the Republican Right wants to foist upon us. If you want to build a right-wing one-party police state, do it in your own back yard, not ours.

Friday, November 2, 2018

Have no fear, the November ish is here!

Around the start of each month, everyone is always teetering on the edge of their toilet seat for the latest issue of The Last Word, and this month is no exception!

The November ish has been published, and it talks about all sorts of fi things! This includes my trip to Zion National Park and the flatulence that filled it, people ruining Speak & Spells by modifying them, Rachael Ray's inability to blow bubbles with bubble gum, the unending wastage of paper and other goodies, strabismus glasses, and more!

So point your pooper here...

If that doesn't work, try this...