Thursday, June 25, 2009

Carnival of Ohio Politics, #171

Welcome to the 171 st edition of the Carnival of Ohio Politics! Unfortunately, I've allowed myself to become trapped into the cursed numerology surrounding these carnivals, and the need for a number related theme. Beyond observing that 171 is a palindrome, and that Wiki tells me that in the 2000 census Belmore Ohio had 171 residents, there's not a lot of stuff related to 171. Well, there probably is, but on this topic I'm facing the kind of writer's block that the Bad Hemingway Contest people would call “The White Bull that is a Monitor with No Words on It”.

Had I given this a bit more advance thought, I'd have stipulated that all entries must contain a palindrome in the title. Would have cut down the editorial work substantially.

Next time up, I'm goin' off the reservation – probably something like an “As Seen on TV” edition. Don't say you weren't warned.

But now on to this week's jambalaya of Ohio bloggy goodness.

The Machiavellian from The Virtuous Republic is searching for one of those federal stimulus jobs in Ohio, and that's exactly what he found. Maybe Diogenes could do better, but I doubt it.

Daniel at Buckeye RINO wants to c lean up county government, and not just in Cuyahoga county by shifting the election cycle to odd years. It's probably better than my idea to clean up Cuyahoga county via tactical nukes, since there's an uncanny resemblance between many politicians and cockroaches.

On the larger issue of corruption, Daniel has a major point. When we're talking about how to restart growth, we often focus on taxes, regulations, education, incentives, etc., and rarely take into account the negative effect of having local government run by a bunch of self serving shakedown artists. Honest business people don't get along well with dishonest politicians.

In Strickland, Redfern, Dimora, Kasich, and Coughlin (Oh My!) Daniel takes on Strickland's “I was against gambling before I was for gambling” shedding of principle, Redfern's related flogging of Dimora, Kasich's silence, and Coughlin's response. Confused? Welcome to Ohio Politics. Read the whole thing, as they say.

John Michael Spinelli is On Assignment, noting that Cleveland has a neighborhood in the “ Top 25” for violent crime, while Cincinnati has a neighborhood sporting the national championship. Not a title you want to bring home. He also notes that since Strickland has embraced gambling, why not create casinos on trains? (Well, technically only slots on trains, but since other states have casinos on “riverboats” that really can't go anywhere, why not a train? At least you would eventually get from Cleveland to Cincinnati.). He also makes some comparisons about our views on nuclear power (now that there's a proposal to actually build a new plant) with the French, much to the advantage of the French.

Tom Blumer of BizzyBlog starts out with one of his “positivity” pieces on Joe Nuxhall. And in these contentious days, who doesn't need some positivity? Unfortunately, it's all downhill with the inevitable descent into Kasich v Strickland (agreed that Kasich doesn't get the credit he should for balancing the Federal budget even noting that this wasn't entirely his own doing, but to imply the whole fiscal crisis is a Strickland problem is a bit of a stretch. I'll certainly sign up for the validity of describing Strickland as 'dithering', or perhaps given the slots issue, 'blithering'. And then there's the directionless Lee Fisher.

Conservative Culture notes that the ATF wants to know the serial numbers of NRA member's guns. Because, you know, the NRA is busy running guns to Mexico. Keep in mind that the unofficial ATF slogan is “You know us, we're the Waco people”. In a continuing vein, CC notes that free speech on some Ohio campuses is now optional at the whim of local security. Apparently, evangelicals are the new Irish.

Neocon Panic Attacks notes that the costs of nuclear power are more than most people suppose, and risky as well. But at least the things are capable of producing power on a large scale, unlike, say, wind or solar.

The Ohio Republic provides an update on Stowers v OH Dept of Agriculture, where the Dept. sent a swat team out to raid the Stower's – wait for it – food co-op. Seems to be a pretty extreme measure for someone likely selling illicit gluten free flour. Ohio Republic also notes that people aren't as keen on holding the d ollar as a reserve currency anymore, because the international community is loosing faith in the ability of the Administration to turn the economy around.

Tim Higgins of Just Blowing Smoke provides a fractured fairy tail update on Little Ben Riding Hood, as well as noting that whenever we have a Democratic President, we've had a health care crisis that had to be solved RIGHT NOW!, but some how, some way, we've survived.

Ben of the Keeler Political Report also notes the proposal to build a new nuclear plant in southern Ohio, but doubts that it will ever get built. So do I; most of the Green movement seems to be dedicated to stopping all energy production however they can. He also notes Gov. Strickand's flop on slot machines.

Glass City Jungle's Lisa Renee notes that the proposed Ohio budget hits the libraries pretty hard, but it's a lot more than libraries facing cuts. Just wait till the pension funds for state employees can't be ignored anymore.

Finally, my own submissions from The Boring Made Dull: Related to Daniel's posts on Cuyahoga County corruption, Ted “Poor Tax” Strickland, and on to a new topic, the failed recall effort to oust Akron Mayor Don Plusquellic.

That's it for Carnival #171; a day late, and dollar short. Thanks to all who submitted pieces.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

DOUBLE ISSUE! Carnival of Ohio Politics #169 & #170

Welcome to the Summer of Fun Double Issue of the Carnival of Ohio Politics, for editions #169 and #170! Jerry Rice's post-season "169" is pretty impressive but, 170? It's powered some of the most common, everyday items we continue to use:

The Apple Powerbook 170

An Olympus camera

TLM LCD monitor

Will this be the Summer of Love and Flower Power in Ohio's blogosphere? I won't be taking that bet, but the rate of blogging certainly hasn't slowed down, as this edition's submissions demonstrate.

Leading off, we have Roland Hansen Commentary, which opines that Ohio is losing a "fine elected official and a real true politician of the best kind as Gordy Heminger leaves Ohio for a job headquartered in Indiana."

The entries from the Cincinnati Beacon entice people who like to get an insider's view: To the People of Cincinnati, Shadow Hare Speaks, Shadow Hare Hero (or panhandling violator?) and The Time is Now to Join Roach.

Just Blowing Smoke takes a look at one of his local (Toledo) mayoral candidates and that candidate's relationship to a scholarship plan, a lawsuit brought by the Indiana pension funds to halt the Chrysler asset sale, and some thoughts on the left wing and the right wing of politics.

We get an Ohio Sovereignty Resolution Update from Ohio Republic that includes an announcement for their July 4th statehouse rally rescheduling. Readers are then asked to consider, "Ohio GDP falls 0.7% in 2008 – what else is new?" and to remember Flag Day, in a way that Ohio sovereignty would require, in a post titled, "Fly Ohio Flag Alone on Flag Day."

Co-editor of the Carnival, The Boring Made Dull, contemplates more taxes for the city of Barberton and Akron Mayor Plusquellic's announcement of plans to hire more police.

The Buckeye AG Network (ag for agriculture) has a few blogs representative of a mainstay Ohio industry. First up, Ohio's Mike Bumgarner Tapped to Head Center for Food and Animal Issues. We also get to read about a perspective I know I can't speak about authoritatively: what a Chevy-driving farm boy who's never owned another brand of vehicle think about the government stake now held in General Motors. And, maybe my favorite of their submissions, a post about how " media allows farmers to connect and converse with consumers..."

Bizzy Blog offers a critique of what it calls, "An Erroneous Early Misfire From Kasich’s PressSec" - it has to do with NCR's departure from Ohio for Georgia and the GOP candidate for Ohio Governor, John Kasich.

Former editor and thankfully blogging-again Pho's Akron Pages provides commentary on casino petitions getting caught "loading the dice," also-returning blogger Law Dork's takedown of an MSM look at the SCOTUS refusal to hear a case on DADT and the recall effort directed at Akron Mayor Plusquellic.

Lisa Renee, co-editor here and sole editor at Glass City Jungle, examines how a press release from her Mayor's office on the Ohio Supreme Court ruling against residency requirements has created a bit of discussion.

In the spirit of stick-with-itness, Spinelli on Assignment keeps us informed on what he considers to be the boost Ohio and regional transportation projects have been receiving as well as how Ohio's cities fared in the annual global quality of life ranking (that one Ohio city made the list, and which one, is interesting in and of itself).

I confess, I haven't met too many proponents of tax increases, but Madrigal Maniac offers us a look inside a group that seeks to do just that. Also to ponder: yard waste: would you rather pay a levy and get it "free" or pay for it with a fee? That's one issue cities across the country answer differently. Finally, the self-titled maniac wants to know, "Bill Todd, why are you still talking?".

Coming around again for our summer funtime is Ohio Republic with more discussion about state sovereignty: the struggle for freedom is non-partisan; our state senate is moving forward on considering SCR 13 (State Sovereignty Resolution), and, an old favorite topic of the Ohio blogosphere, Dannation! (Again.).

I used to think it unreal people could get so riled up political races literally years ahead of time. But ever since January, there's been 2010 chatter. I'm not immune from it either. In that vein, Roland Hansen Commentary preps us on the 2010 Lucas County Commissioner race.

Seneca County blog offers this Ohioan's perspective on how Ohio does (or does not, as the opinion may be) distribute federal dollars to state agencies.

In the full spirit of a double issue, Bizzy Blog participates with these three politician-centered posts: Mandel: Watchdog of Our Tax Dollars, Lee Fisher Flip-Flo and Chuck Norris Supports John Kasich… (among other gubernatorial candidates).

Blowing by again, Just Blowing Smoke speaks to the environmental movement confusion that is so much of our politics these days in Not My Bag.

Another wind-minded blog, Bearing Drift Ohio, also makes its reappearance in this edition after a hiatus and does some self-reflection in Local Blog Might Have a Point, regarding some Delaware County politics and politicians. In another reflective post, BDO analogizes politicians to high school stereotypes - no! (/sarcasm). In these days of reunions and Facebook, it's an appropriate read. And finally, orange barrel season - it's heeeeere.

Whalertly turns our attention to talk about Mike DeWine and his potential run for Attorney General. He also provides a canvass class on the economy of Ohio and Franklin County from 1970-now. And, in a more mischievious style, he poses the question of whether stealing bumper stickers is a political move.

Co-editor Daniel Jack Williamson of BuckeyeRINO takes an in-depth look at an interesting church-state-related proposal that deals with managing school time and religious instruction.

Last but most definitely not least, History Mike offers his perspective on the Holocaust Museum killer, texting while driving (hopefully he didn't blog that one while doing the same) and...jury duty.

I haven't been writing like I talk a whole lot lately, but when I have, I've mentioned the all-male bastion charged with hammering out Ohio's budget, the announcement of the first candidate to enter the 2010 race for Ohio House District #17's seat, and a round-up of national reviews that look at Ohio's public schools.

Everyone have a safe and pleasant summery week as we round the corner to...July 4 already!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Carnival of Ohio Politics #168

Welcome to the 168th edition of the Carnival of Ohio Politics!

There are 168 hours in a week. Most Carnival readers and most Carnival bloggers are very busy productive people. There aren't enough hours in the week for them to do all that they have to do. Me, on the other hand, I get to use nice long arrows to block out large numbers of consecutive hours for leisurely things like sleeping and partying. Aah! The life! Don't you envy me? One big exception to the sleep schedule started at 11 PM Tuesday and carried over through the early morning hours of Wednesday, and that time is blocked out for compiling this Carnival. To compensate, I'll begin sleeping right after work on Wednesday. After all, I can't let things like the Carnival, no matter how important it is (and it is important, you know!) deprive me of my beauty rest (and those of you who've seen me know that it will take much more beauty rest to rehabilitate my ugly visage). I don't block out time for most household tasks, like laundry and washing dishes, because I don't plan to do them. Let them pile up. I don't want to squander my time on mundane chores. The exception is taking out the garbage. If I don't put it on the schedule, I'll totally forget to put the trash bins at curbside before garbage pickup. The health department has been getting on my case about all the fleas, flies, fungus, rats, mice, wild pigs, vultures, and foul odors emanating from the house, so I can't afford to keep skipping trash day. Though putting the trash out at curbside takes all of 5 minutes, I figure I'll allow myself a leisurely three hours to get it out there. I hope the health department will make note of all the trouble I'm going to in order to get the place ship shape. I get tired of all the "CONDEMNED" notices being tacked to the door, and I want them to park that crane with the wrecking ball in somebody else's yard. Well, enough for the rant against the health department, and on to bloggy goodness from the Carnival of Ohio Politics!

With a name like Bizzy Blog, I'm sure Tom Blumer is among those who may not feel there are enough hours in the week. He still finds the time to post some gems, though. How about this story, detailing a Ravenna native saving lives as a member of the Coast Guard? Also, the statewide GOP ticket for the 2010 elections, and Tom has some thoughts to share with John Kasich about Jon Husted. Josh Mandel will vy for Ohio Treasurer on that statewide GOP slate.

I happen to have the prototype model of the JMZ action figure. They still haven't worked the bugs out of it, so it hasn't hit store shelves yet. The main hangup with the JMZ action figure is that it's programmed to be just as active as the real Jill Miller Zimon, of Writes Like She Talks, and that just burns the batteries out within minutes. With her hectic schedule, Jill still manages to keep up, but I bet she wishes there were more hours in the week. Josh Mandel's candidacy announcement for Ohio Treasurer doesn't excite Jill.

Roland Hansen Commentary
alerts us that the elected officials of Lucas County have a blog. Roland hopes that the elected officials are using their hours away from work for their blogging. He wouldn't want them blogging on the county's time with the taxpayers' dime.

If the Lucas County officials feel compelled to blog, then Tim Higgins can teach them a few things about the language of Blenglish, at Just Blowing Smoke. If you're a blogger, chances are you already know some Blenglish terminology. Also, lawmakers appear to squander all the hours of the week devising a needless protection racket. They think they we need them to protect us from ourselves. Don't they have better things to do with their time?

Ben Keeler, at Keeler Political Report, chimes in on the same notes as Tim Higgins about the protection racket. Matt Lundy, state representative for the 57th Ohio House District in Lorain County, has apparently been devoting his hours toward stifling payday lender clones.

I can think of worse things that elected officials can do with the hours allotted to them than blogging or devising protection rackets--like hatching new schemes to rip us off with more taxes. I'm afraid Harold Thomas, of The Ohio Republic, has bad news for us. Yep. Our politicians in Washington DC are contemplating enactment of Value Added Taxes. GRRRRR!!!!!

John Michael Spinelli, at Spinelli on Assignment, notes that Ohio workers may soon have too many hours of free time if the unemployment rate keeps getting bumped upward. The possibility exists that if tubular rail gets off the ground, some components required for its construction may be manufactured right here in Ohio. That would be nice, for a change. The Strickland Administration has finally been briefed on tubular rail proposals.

Justin Jeffre at the Cincinnati Beacon questions whether Cincinnati should be allocating any man-hours toward secretly monitoring the police. The topic came up during a question and answer segment (video is available) of a mayoral candidates' forum hosted by the NAACP. The Cincy mayoral candidates who addressed the NAACP (more video) were Dr. Brad Wenstrup, who indicated that he'd monitor police, and Jason Haap, who also blogs at Cincinnati Beacon using the nickname of The Dean of Cincinnati.

After all the hours the Strickland has committed to changing the school funding formula, the Ohio Senate has balked, requiring many more hours, maybe even months, maybe even never, to change the way schools are funded. While Beacon Journal reporter Dennis Willard thinks this latest development absolutely stinks, The Boring Made Dull is glad that the icky Strickland plan went nowhere. Also from The Boring Made Dull, Bedford school board member Andrew Mizsak has been put on notice to "man up," clean his room (at his parents' house), and maybe even get a job and his own place like any normal 28-year-old man would do. OOOOHHH!!! I'd better keep TBMD away from my house. I'd really be in trouble, then.

With all the hours I had available to me this week, I only came up with one post at Buckeye RINO. I've revisited the topic of creating School Enterprise Zones to conveniently locate an array of low-cost, low-risk supplemental learning opportunities that can occupy the hours of your schoolkids without gobbling up more of your own hours being the children's taxi driver.

Aha! I wrapped up the Carnival in a shorter amount of time than I allotted! I guess I can get more beauty rest!!!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Carnival 167 inspired by George...

Inspired by George, Washington that is, the image used for Washington State Route 167 caught my eye. Despite the fact that the Ward family might have been destined for greater historical note (Artemas Ward was the first Commander-in-Chief of the "Grand American Army") had George Washington not taken over (and later criticized my many great-grandfather), I've always liked George Washington, I'm especially fond of his farewell address where he warned us about political parties and it's pretty clear we didn't listen...

Jill's submission from Writes Like She Talks is on memories, but of a different kind, in relation to Memorial Day and her thoughts on an op-ed piece written by Elizabeth Sullivan of the Plain Dealer.

Roland Hansen's blog post from Roland Hansen Commentary demonstrates the passion that's created in our two party system in his post about what he thinks is a dumb idea by Lucas County Commissioner and Mayoral candidate Ben Konop. You can get a hint as to how Roland feels about Konop by the description he shared, "perennial northwest Ohio political candidate and opportunist"...

On BuckeyeRhino Daniel Jack Williamson provides a written oratory on why he opposes charter schools in such a manner that it makes me glad I don't have to take the opposing viewpoint to debate.

Our country was founded on design of a smaller federal government, on Ohio Republic where the focus is on advocating the peaceful, legal independence of Ohio from the United States of America, comes this Memorial Day piece: "But what did they fight and die for?". Also sent in is a piece about the issue of secession in Georgia where common arguments against secession are addressed.

I can't help but wonder what kind of discussion would take place if George Washington were here today and were to read Just Blowing Smoke by Tim Higgins. What would he think about our Toledo government and projection? Ironically, this next post is about a Washington DC time warp...

On Glass City Jungle I went to our local Memorial Day Parade and focused quite a bit on the proposed fire fee that at an almost three hour contentious City Council meeting did not pass.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Carnival of Ohio Politics, CLXVI

Or, if you would like, Welcome to Carnival 10100110_2. Keep in mind that there are 10 kinds of people in the world, those who understand binary, and those who don't. Also keep in mind that at the Boring Made Dull, we are all about intellectual pretension, because without pretension, we'd have no intellect at all.

And on the pretension front, the binary an roman numbers are courtesy of Wolfram Alpha, the “computational knowledge engine” that had everybody buzzing for 5 minutes, until they figured out that very little knowledge was being computed. The Boys at Google are not losing sleep ove this.

Roland Hansen Commentary takes on the 'independents', and notes that political activity is a team sport. “Independent”, of course, is one of the great euphemisms in American politics. To be independent is to be proud, individualistic, straight-shootin', tough, yet fair. In short, just like everybody else.

John Michel Spinelli tackles Credit Card Reform, teaching personal finance in high school, and as well as finding that we're all grumpy. Well, this is Ohio, after all. Though, come to think of it, California's not in such a cheery mood these days....

. Credit card reform is kind of a mixed bag. Certainly, the consequences will be that the cost of credit will go up for everybody, and in a lot of cases, people who need credit won't be able to get it.

The upside, from a paternalist conservative viewpoint, is that those with the inability to delay gratification, the math challenged, and the stupid, will be somewhat protected. The libertarian side suggests that these folks have to grow up sometime, and until they face the consequences of their actions, they never will.

Conservative Culture notes that one of the Tea Party outcomes is watching over l ocal government spending and taxes. The tea parties don't mean much to a Washington administration with huge majorities, but drop a hundred or so concerned citizens into a county or city council meeting, and you'll get some attention.

CC also notes that Lima is raising revenue through red light cameras. These are almost always revenue devices, sold as safety programs. It's also nice that the government has gamed the system by making these violatoins civil, rather than criminal, offenses, since the standard of proof is lower. Next thing you know, they'll be shaving down the yellow light time to gin up some additional tickets.

Oh, and in a minor matter, CC has a big 'I told you so' bit on the t ransition from gay marriage to polygamy. Possibly the Grand Canyon of slippery slopes.

Harold Thomas, on The Ohio Republic, notes that a significant prize has been established to encourage local governments to find ways to share services and cut costs. This is another issue where I'm of two minds; sure, less costly government is good, but what I really want is smaller, less intrusive government. And I'm probably willing to pay extra for it. Still, savings is savings.

He also notes some minor progress on a state sovereignty resolution. A minor quibble on this post; I don't collect that the Hessians were British allies in the War for Indepenence; they were mercenaries hired by the British. A very minor quibble; there's a wide range of quality available in soldiers for hire. At the end of the day, the Hessians reputation got them the gig, but they didn't live up to their billing.

History Mike, and Boring Son #1, feel free to chip in on this point.

Tim Higgins, of Just Blowing Smoke, has a nice post touching on the history of American political parties and publicly funded primaries. It's a good question. He also notes the “t hree card monty” game that Toledo Mayor Finkbiner is playing.

Finkbiner, one of the great names in American politics (“fink” says it right up front, don't you think?) is also, along with the Last Don, Akron's Mayor Don Plusquellic, is facing a recall election.

Don't know much about Finkbiner, but Da Arnold's reign in California should give one pause about voting to recall someone who hasn't actually cut anyone in half with a chainsaw. Just sayin'.

On that note, Ben Keeler of Keeler's Political Report notes that The Last Don's recall has been set for June 23.Donny Boy, after 20 kazillion years as Mayor, we hardly knew ye. Except for the fact that you were jetting all over the globe on our dime. And you think that we're not taxed enough. Certainly Akron can do better than Don. But we will probably do worse. Just take a look at the mess that calls itself Cleveland.

Lisa Renee, of Glass City Jungle comments on mayoral candidate Jim Moody's anti-crime platform (just to distinguish himself from all of the candidates with pro-crime platforms), one feature of which is to have non-violent offenders do community service in pink jumpsuits. Personally, I believe that shame, that archaic concept, could have a positive role to play. Restitution also should be a key for non-violent offenders. She also covers the Trevor Casey press conference.

Thanks to everyone who participated this week. It's Memorial Day; not just a time to reflect on the Great War, or WWII, or Korea, Viet Nam, or the War on Terror, but the countless little wars that men and women have died in to preserve our freedom. In a sunny May afternoon, it's easy to forget the sacrifices that others have made. 

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Carnival of Ohio Politics #165

What is a carnival without an organ, right? The one in the photo is the Wurlitzer Military Band Organ Style 165. It reminds me of Savin Rock Amusement Park, where my parents used to take us on weekends. With the days getting longer and jubilees and Memorial Day just around the corner, though wind and cold temps are still here, the organ makes me feel like summer is just, about, here.

Want more smiles? Try these blog posts:

Education - can't live with it, can't live with it? Taxman Blog asks, regarding school levies, "So, are you donating?" And, on crime in Cincinnati, Taxman repots on what calls, life in "progress" city.

Just Blowing Smoke contemplates a new retirement plan, "understanding, that Social Security is probably not in my future." Ouch! The second is on the ending of the Energy Crisis, at least according to what Congress is saying.

On one of Ohio's best examples of a public entity's online communication effort, the Seneca County Blog expresses its fears that there is trouble "right here in Findlay City." Then they do a good forehead slap with the title of their post, "This is just too stupid to believe but hey, this is Ohio." I would love to see more municipalities emulate that kind of frankness!

poster Rose critiques the ABJ's Steve Hoffman's critique of John Kasich in, "Waiter! I’ll Have What Steve Hoffman Is Having…" Then, Tom opines about Cincinnati’s latest reason for voting with feet (as in, leaving). Last, Rose deals with another school levy for voters to consider.

On a variation of WhyOwhyOwhyO, did I ever leave Ohio, comes Spinelli on Assignment's Budget Battle leads to more OhiWoe. Oy - this kind of thing was never done to my old homestate of Connecticut!

John Michael Spinelli isn't the only one with transportation on his mind. Co-editor Daniel Jack Williamson of BuckeyeRINO shares his thought son trains, tubular and otherwise this week also.

Ben Keeler of the Keeler Political Report, reports that opponents to Mayor Plusquellic have enough signatures to force a recall vote. He's asking readers for predictions on how that effort will go.

On the stimulus front, Ohio Republic explains why he believes it won't work. And again, something I confess to not following closely but appreciate knowing about through my editing responsibilities at the Carnival: State Sovereignty Resolution (SCR 13) was to be introduced in the Ohio Senate and then was, in fact, introduced.

Go visit this post just for the graphic that appears with History Mike's post, On License Plate Paint and Red Light Cameras.

See see see? I'm not the only one who knows how to ask a long question: from co-editor of the Carnival, Lisa Renee at Glass City Jungle: Should our area decide to join the rest of the state and have our public transportation authority be funded by sales tax instead of property tax is a hot debate item as started here on? Personally, I would love to see Lisa Renee Rant & Rave! Here, she focuses on her belief that public transportation is something that voters should decide, not something that should be decided by a few for us.

A lesson in state government from Third Base Politics is probably intended for the blog readers, but I bet we could each think of some current politician(s) who could benefit as well.

In regard to a charter school uproar in Toledo, Ohio, Roland Hansen Commentary asks, is it true that Archie Bunker is alive and well in Toledo's Old Orchard neighborhood?

And from yours truly, a few writers reported on how the GOP's numbers, in Ohio and nationally, for women in elected office are abysmal, while a 32 year old single mother of three in Cincinnati, Anitra Brockman, is running as an Independent for Cincinnati City Council.

Everyone have a glorious weekend and thank you as always for your contributions and participation.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Carnival of Ohio Politics #164: Pre-primary edition of 2009

With local primary elections being held on the date of the submission deadline for Carnival #164, this was to be the pre-primary edition of the Carnival of Ohio Politics. After surveying all the entries for this week's Carnival, and seeing they were devoid of coverage of local primary races, I say we scrap the pre-primary theme and go with a number 164 theme. 164 is two times 82, and 82 happens to be the number of regular season games in the NBA, so two regular seasons' worth of games in the NBA is 164, and you just can't mention NBA and Ohio together without mentioning the Ohio native who was just named on Monday, at a ceremony in Akron, as the 2009 Most Valuable Player in the NBA, from the Cleveland Cavaliers, LeBron James. He's had six seasons with the Cavs, so the LeBron era of regular season games of Cavs basketball is 3 times 164.

So let's make a mid-course correction:


This week, LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers face the Atlanta Hawks in the second round of the NBA playoffs after having swept the Detroit Pistons in the first round. Should the Cavaliers advance, they would face the winners of the Boston Celtics-Orlando Magic series to determine the Eastern Conference champion, who would then play the Western Conference champion to determine the overall champ of the NBA. Currently, the Los Angeles Lakers, Houston Rockets, Dallas Mavericks, and Denver Nuggets are still in the hunt for the Western Conference championship. We may not have a crystal ball, but I've got a hunch that fans of the Cavs and LeBron James are in for a real treat as the playoffs unfold.

Well, if you thought my thought process for how I arrived at LeBron James from the number 164 was silly and convoluted, YOU AIN'T SEEN NOTHING YET! This week, Ohio's bloggers seemed to want to highlight silliness, almost as if there were some competition to see which resourceful blogger could come up with the most ridiculous story to cover in the realm of Ohio politics. Ohio can really get weird. Skeptical? Read on!

If there really were an award this week for most silly (ooh! What should we call such an award, if there were one? The Traficant Awards? I'm open to suggestions!) I'd have to give it to the Dean of Cincinnati, writing at The Cincinnati Beacon, for a story about an anonymous, costumed and masked, self-appointed crimefighter from suburban Milford who wants to ensure that Cincy's Over-the-Rhine neighborhood is safe. Who is that masked man, anyway? It's . . . (LOL!) . . . Shadow Hare! ROFL!

If that didn't tickle your funny bone, then you didn't click on the link, read through the original post, and watch the video linked to that. Go back and do it.

I'd say the Dean edged out John Michael Spinelli by a hair (hare). Spinelli on Assignment brings us the pathetic tale of a conspiracy to get Ohio and the feds to squander government $$$$ on a passenger rail route from Cleveland to Cincinnati on freight rail tracks that would take an hour and thirty minutes longer to make the trek than it would to just drive oneself there. Spinelli captures the boneheadedness of this fiasco-in-the-making by aptly nicknaming the proposed rail service as "turtle trains." If government minds were open to funding turtle trains, then we might as well funnel money into state route 3 instead of I-71, and Buckeye fans might as well travel to the next bowl game in tiny turboprops with frequent refueling stops instead of in a jumbo jet. Aside from the tortoise (turtle train) and the (Shadow) hare, Spinelli does have the more sobering story of Chrysler and potential bankruptcy, including Sherrod Brown's take on the matter. Jeep workers in Toledo may be in for a rough ride.

And while we're on the topics of silliness, Toledo, and transportation funding, Lisa Renee Ward, of Glass City Jungle, submitted a rather straightforward piece about TARTA that questions the notion of public transportation as a form of socialism. That's not the silly part. You need to read the comments in response to her post to get to the really silly stuff, like the person who suggests that we should have no public roads. I suppose that person would like to stake a claim to I-75 as their own personal toll road. At any rate, the debate which ensues among the respondents is so much more convoluted than how I arrived at LeBron James from the number 164 that I just rolled my eyes as I read it.

I hope the photo that HistoryMike has on display of a horse in front of a TARTA facility isn't what Toledo has in mind as it seeks more funding for public transportation. If so, then the turtle train story isn't silly enough to be runner-up to Shadow Hare. At least a turtle train is a train. I'd hate to think that TARTA riders would have to mount actual horses to get around Toledo. HistoryMike also has a more sober story of highway deaths and subsequent roadside memorials.

If you haven't cracked a smile by now, you haven't been clicking these links to read these fantastic blogs. Go back and click the links.

For repeat readers of the Carnival, we've come to expect a little bit of silliness injected into the posts at Just Blowing Smoke, haven't we? This time, Just Blowing Smoke turns the tables on our lawmakers, showing how they've come up with some silly laws. Also, trying to delineate clearly between foreign automobiles and domestic ones can be a bit convoluted.

At Roland Hansen Commentary, the latest quirk that Roland Hansen noticed about a member of Toledo's City Council, Lindsay Webb, is that she's all of a sudden touting a reduction in the size of city council itself. Hansen is still trying to figure Webb out. If her actions or words seem convoluted, though, I wouldn't necessarily attribute it to silliness. More likely, it's just that she's a lawyer.

The Allen County Commissioners are tough to figure out. Are tax hikes in the county's future? Conservative Culture notes that their utterances haven't been consistent. Why haven't they staked out their principles and stuck with them? Also, Jon Husted has been to the Lima area talking about a run for Ohio Secretary of State in 2010, and unveiling a proposal that includes a new composition and new rules for the body that makes Ohio's redistricting decisions in the wake of each Census.

At Writes Like She Talks, JMZ blogs about a state rep, Josh Mandel, that she can't always figure out, either. She includes a video clip of an interview with Mandel conducted outside the AIPAC conference. You can see for yourself if you can figure out Mandel by watching the video.

From Keeler Political Report: Until recently, the job of Chris Paulitz was to generate a media buzz for his boss, Senator George Voinovich. Now, as he leaves the Voinovich staff for another job, Paulitz creates his own media buzz. Isn't the media odd, sometimes, for what they choose to report?

We bloggers often pick on the media for their silliness, but sometimes they get it right. Tom Blumer, at Bizzy Blog, wants to point out that someone in the media actually got it right when they pointed out that John Kasich was chair of the budget committee in the U. S. House when Congress balanced the budget for the first time in more than 30 years back in 1997. Also, when silly politicians think they have their constituents cornered into making concessions to government, people can just up and leave. They vote with their feet.

Perhaps the entry most devoid of silliness and convoluted thinking for this week comes to us from The Ohio Republic. The text of a proposed resolution introduced in Ohio's General Assembly that affirms the Constitution's 9th and 10th Amendment provisions is included. That the people, and that local and state governments should have checks and balances upon the power and authority of the federal government makes a lot of sense, just as there are checks and balances between executive, legislative, and judicial branches of government.

Some silliness has finally come to an end. Repeat drunken driver Mark Provenza has stepped down from his post as Lorain's law director, and he's been replaced by Patrick Riley, who started work on Monday. I've got that story posted at Buckeye RINO.

Feel free to share your suggestions for what we should name the awards for silliness in Ohio politics.

Though we ditched the pre-primary theme for this Carnival, I hope Ohioans took the opportunity to visit the polls if there were races in their precincts.

That concludes our Carnival. Now let me get caught up on the latest news of the Cavs and LeBron James.