Friday, November 28, 2008

Sense-less Letters to the Editor

Let us get more involved. Let us help you prevent war, poverty, disease and all the other problems that seem to plague us.There are some poor souls whose sole object in life is to write bafflingly ridiculous letters to newspapers, local or not. Here are two prime subjects who wrote to the Muskogee Phoenix in the past week.

Example One:
Give us all a break and an Internet page

Leaders of all nations, give us a break, all six billion of us.

Please set up a Web page on the Internet for your nation and on it talk about any issues that involve the advancement of civilization. Please include blogs for communicating and linking with viewers, YouTube for visual displays and RSS feeds to alert us by e-mail when new information is available.

We could then have a town hall meeting all day, every day, in every home and office on the planet. Each site will grow and soon all people who want to get involved will know what works and what does not work.

Then we simply flow chart the work to be done, and do it.

The payoff for all people is going to be a better life forever.

David R. Oliver - Oklahoma City

Example Two:

Disco, dancing proposal could help save world

Fort Gibson could help by building a “Green Dream Motel.” The builders of the dream green hospital that honors Muskogee, the state and our nation in striving to be the first LEED certified hospital in the country (It’s very sad about the drainage problem. Let’s help out).

“In the War against Nature, I am sorry to say, we are winning” is a favorite quote environmentalists repeat a lot because it is so true.

Fort Gibson could also put in a disco like those built in other places, so when people dance the vibrations on the floor generate electricity. Oklahoma, fortunately, has net metering, so with solar panels, electricity could be sold back to the electric company.

During times of disaster it might be the only structure people could go to. It could be a weight-loss center. If you danced enough and became happier and healthier, you could get free health care at the green hospital in case of emergency. We could advertise, begging people to come and dance with us as we save the world.

Jean McMahon - Fort Gibson

(McMahon is a local Green Party activist, whose area claim to fame comes from attending various public events dressed as a polar bear.)

Debate Raging Over Muskogee Mayor's Powers

Sparked by an order by Mayor John Tyler Hammons, there is a debate raging over exactly what the mayor of Muskogee can do. Here is a time-line of events.

Mayor names successors
Hammons sets order of succession in case of emergency

If Muskogee’s mayor and vice mayor are unavailable during a state or national emergency, Councilor James Gulley would take the reins of city government, according to orders by Mayor John Tyler Hammons.

Hammons issued an order before he and five other members of the Council left for the National League of Cities convention in Orlando, Fla., earlier this month.


Both orders state Hammons is authorized by City Charter and by state law to determine who would be in line to succeed him and Vice Mayor Robert Perkins in case of disaster.


Councilor Jim Ritchey questions Hammons’ authority to issue an order of any sort.

“I don’t know of a mayor previous to him ever doing it, ever granting that,” Ritchey said. “This is news to me.”

Pam Bush, who has been city clerk since 1992, said she has never received a mayoral order before.


While Ritchey questions, Hammons’ authority to issue orders of any kind, Gulley said he didn’t have a problem with that.

“To me, it was kind of a non-issue because I didn’t think it was going to happen (a national emergency),” Gulley said.

Mayor’s power topic of meeting
Special session set to discuss recently issued orders

Just how much power the mayor has will be taken up by the City Council in a special called meeting Tuesday afternoon, according to an agenda posted Wednesday by the City Clerk’s Office.

Mayor John Tyler Hammons said he called the meeting at the request of Councilors Jim Ritchey and Bob Luttrull.

They asked the mayor’s powers and duties to issue orders be clarified after Hammons recently issued two orders designating who would succeed him and Vice Mayor Robert Perkins in case they were unavailable during a national or state emergency. The agenda calls for a review of the mayor’s powers both under the City Charter and the state Emergency Interim Succession and Judiciary Succession Act.

Hammons says he is authorized by both to issue an order of succession.


Ritchey says the charter specifically precludes the mayor from doing so and sets out the order of succession.

Interim City Attorney Roy Tucker said he is preparing to address both issues at Tuesday’s meeting.

Tucker said the entire issue of succession could be a moot point under the Emergency Operations Plan the city adopted several years ago.


Tucker said he believes the law requires that if a state of emergency was declared, emergency management officials would take over.

Today, Muskogee Phoenix editorial:

Whose authority?

If Muskogee is faced with a disaster, residents’ main concern would not be the mayoral line of succession.

They also would not want a part-time, ceremonial mayor directing emergency services.

That’s why Mayor John Tyler Hammons’ supposed order denoting a line of succession for himself in case of disaster is ridiculous and tragic.

Hammons filed an order recently with the city clerk in an attempt to establish a line of mayoral succession. He claims the state gave him power to do that.

What Hammons overlooks is that the state gave the respective officers of each city the authority to determine lines of succession, and the respective officers of Muskogee who make official decisions, according to our City Charter, are the members of the City Council acting as a body. The Charter clearly states, “All powers of the City shall be vested in the Council” and the mayor is only the presiding member of that council.

He is not the king. He only has one vote.

The council, it seems, should decide whatever order of succession there is, and our council made that decision several years ago. If Hammons wants to alter that order, then he needs to take his proposal to the council for approval, not assume powers that he doesn’t have.

That’s the real issue here, and why the City Council is correct to hold a special meeting to discuss it. We don’t need someone giving orders who doesn’t have the authority to make them. It only causes confusion.

It’s also clear, and wise, that the Charter states our weak mayor has no administrative duties.

The mayor is not involved with day-to-day operations of the city, so we would not want someone stepping in to make orders regarding something he doesn’t understand completely.

For instance, if a disaster were to occur, we would not want someone unfamiliar with the city’s day-to-day operations directing any rescue or emergency efforts. The heads of city departments under the direction of the city manager or an emergency official should do that. They are paid for that and have been trained as well.

That’s why this question of who’s in charge in case of a disaster is important. We agree with City Attorney Roy Tucker that if an emergency is declared, emergency management officials should handle the emergency — not a ceremonial part-timer.

The City Council will meet at 4:15pm this Tuesday, to debate this issue. If you wish to go, the meeting will be held downtown at City Hall (Okmulgee and 3rd), on the third floor in the Council Chambers. I plan on being there to cover the meeting. Things might get interesting.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Muskogee Fifth Least Expensive City in the US

This from the Muskogee Phoenix:
Muskogee fifth least expensive city to live, report says

By Cathy Spaulding
Phoenix Staff Writer

Three months after being ranked the sixth least expensive city in the United States, Muskogee moved up a notch to No. 5.

A report released this week by Muskogee Development quotes the ACCRA Cost of Living Index as ranking Muskogee as the America’s fifth least expensive city, 14.8 percent below the national average, for the third quarter of 2008.

(Rest of article)

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Likud Takes Solid Lead in Israeli Polling

With the Israeli Knesset elections set for February 10th, 2009, Binyamin Netanyahu and the Likud party have taken a solid lead in polling over Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni (Kadima), Ehud Barak (Labor), and other political parties.

For those unfamiliar with the Israeli political process, the Knesset (parliament) has 120 seats. These seats are split proportionally, according to the election results. Vote cast their ballot for a specific party, with the head of that party being that party's nominee for Prime Minister. Parties must break 2% (approximately two seats) to earn a seat in the Knesset. Also, the ruling party must have a at least 61 seats to form a government. As the likelihood of getting so many seats is extremely slim, this leads to coalition building among the parties. (That's the basic gist, and I hope I got it right. Parliamentary forms of government can get very confusing...)

I will proceed to post the average of four of the latest polls for the Knesset elections, with the current seats held by that party in parentheses.
  • Likud: 34.3 seats (12)
  • Kadima: 25.5 seats (29)
  • Shas: 11.3 seats (12)
  • Arab parties: 10.3 seats (10)
  • Yisrael Beteinu: 9.3 seats (11)
  • Labor: 8.3 seats (19)
  • Meretz: 8 seats (5)
  • United Torah Judaism: 6.5 seats (6)
  • Jewish Home: 5.3 seats (9)
  • Green: 1.8 seats (0) *
  • Retirees Party: 0 seats (7) *
* - do not break the 2% threshold for representation
Kadima is facing a drop of 4-5 seats, as Likud looks to gain over 20 seats. The demise of Labor leaves the party staring at a potential loss of over 10 seats, and putting the former second-largest party (2006) fighting for 5th or 6th.

As these now stand, Bibi Netanyahu is likely to be Israel's next Prime Minister, with the Likud coalition gathering enough seats to have a stable government in the Knesset.

This blog fully endorses Bibi Netanyahu and Likud. We hope that they come out with a resounding victory.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Vaclav Klaus - the Next Head of the EU?

Latest news on the European Union:

A Fiery Czech is Poised to be the Face of Europe (excerpts)

PRAGUE — In the 1980s, a Communist secret police agent infiltrated clandestine economics seminars hosted by Vaclav Klaus, a fiery future leader of the Czech Republic, who had come under suspicion for extolling free market virtues. Rather than reporting on Marxist heresy, the agent was most struck by Mr. Klaus’s now famous arrogance.

“His behavior and attitudes reveal that he feels like a rejected genius,” the agent noted in his report, which has since been made public. “He shows that whoever does not agree with his views is stupid and incompetent.”

Decades later, Mr. Klaus, the 67-year-old president of the Czech Republic — an iconoclast with a perfectly clipped mustache — continues to provoke strong reactions. He has blamed what he calls the misguided fight against global warming for contributing to the international financial crisis, branded Al Gore an “apostle of arrogance” for his role in that fight, and accused the European Union of acting like a Communist state.

Now the Czech Republic is about to assume the rotating presidency of the European Union and there is palpable fear that Mr. Klaus will embarrass the world’s biggest trading bloc and complicate its efforts to address the economic crisis and expand its powers. His role in the Czech Republic is largely ceremonial, but he remains a powerful force here, has devotees throughout Europe and delights in basking in the spotlight.


To supporters, Mr. Klaus is a brave, lone crusader, a defender of liberty, the only European leader in the mold of the formidable Margaret Thatcher. (Aides say Mr. Klaus has a photo of the former British prime minister in his office near his desk.)


While even many of the world’s most ardent free marketeers acknowledged the need for the recent coordinated bailout of European banks, Mr. Klaus lambasted it as irresponsible protectionism. He blamed too much — rather than too little — regulation for the crisis.

A fervent critic of the environmental movement, he has called global warming a dangerous “myth,” arguing that the fight against climate change threatens economic growth.

Perhaps his greatest ire has been reserved for the European Union. In 2005, he called for it to be “scrapped.” Now, he is a vocal opponent of the Lisbon Treaty, which aims to help Europe become more of an international player, but which he argues will strip countries of sovereignty.

This is great news for the conservative movement in Europe. Vaclav Klaus is the latest European leader in the type of Margaret Thatcher, standing for free-market capitalism and against the global warming pseudo-science religion.

Drudge: Russian Analyist Predicts US Decline and Breakup

From Drudge:
Tue Nov 25 2008 09:04:22 ET

A leading Russian political analyst has said the economic turmoil in the United States has confirmed his long-held view that the country is heading for collapse, and will divide into separate parts.

Professor Igor Panarin said in an interview with the respected daily IZVESTIA published on Monday: "The dollar is not secured by anything. The country's foreign debt has grown like an avalanche, even though in the early 1980s there was no debt. By 1998, when I first made my prediction, it had exceeded $2 trillion. Now it is more than 11 trillion. This is a pyramid that can only collapse."

The paper said Panarin's dire predictions for the U.S. economy, initially made at an international conference in Australia 10 years ago at a time when the economy appeared strong, have been given more credence by this year's events.

When asked when the U.S. economy would collapse, Panarin said: "It is already collapsing. Due to the financial crisis, three of the largest and oldest five banks on Wall Street have already ceased to exist, and two are barely surviving. Their losses are the biggest in history. Now what we will see is a change in the regulatory system on a global financial scale: America will no longer be the world's financial regulator."

When asked who would replace the U.S. in regulating world markets, he said: "Two countries could assume this role: China, with its vast reserves, and Russia, which could play the role of a regulator in Eurasia."

Asked why he expected the U.S. to break up into separate parts, he said: "A whole range of reasons. Firstly, the financial problems in the U.S. will get worse. Millions of citizens there have lost their savings. Prices and unemployment are on the rise. General Motors and Ford are on the verge of collapse, and this means that whole cities will be left without work. Governors are already insistently demanding money from the federal center. Dissatisfaction is growing, and at the moment it is only being held back by the elections and the hope that Obama can work miracles. But by spring, it will be clear that there are no miracles."

He also cited the "vulnerable political setup", "lack of unified national laws", and "divisions among the elite, which have become clear in these crisis conditions."
And now, for my favorite part:
He predicted that the U.S. will break up into six parts - the Pacific coast, with its growing Chinese population; the South, with its Hispanics; Texas, where independence movements are on the rise; the Atlantic coast, with its distinct and separate mentality; five of the poorer central states with their large Native American populations; and the northern states, where the influence from Canada is strong.

He even suggested that "we could claim Alaska - it was only granted on lease, after all." Panarin, 60, is a professor at the Diplomatic Academy of the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and has authored several books on information warfare.

It's interesting to see how the Russians view the United States: Chinese in the Pacific, Hispanic in the South, Native American in the central portion (Oklahoma, and the upper Great Plains states?)... I have a feeling that they would be surprosed if they walked through our streets, and saw how different it really was. There's no way the American Indian tribes are going to secede and return to their ancestral ways of life, Russia.

Monday, November 24, 2008

RNC Chair Candidates

The two-year term of the Republican National Committee's current head, Mike Duncan, is up in January, and there are already several candidates running for chairman.

The current candidates:

Michael Steele (website)
Saul Anuzis (website)
Chip Saltsman (platform [PDF])
Katon Dawson ('First Read' blog post)

Potential candidates:

Chairman Mike Duncan
Newt Gingrich

Bush Pardons Oklahoman, 13 Others

President Bush issued 14 pardons today, his first since March (he has less than two months to issue pardons). The crimes ranged from tax evasion, bank embezzlement, drug crimes, and theft of government property.

More on the pardons:

Bush has been stingy during his time in office about handing out such reprieves.

Including these actions, he has granted a total of 171 and eight commutations. That's less than half as many as Presidents Clinton or Reagan issued during their time in office. Both were two-term presidents.
(full article)

Among those the President pardoned: Paul Julian McCurdy, of Sulphur, OK. McCurdy had been sentenced for misapplication of bank funds.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

State Rep. Morrissette Wants Kids Weighed

A liberal Democrat state representative wants all Oklahoma school-age children to be weighed:
Oklahoma state lawmaker wants schoolkids to be weighed
Under proposal, some cases could be turned over to DHS
By Michael McNutt - The Oklahoman

Concerned by estimates that half of Oklahomans are overweight, a state legislator said Tuesday he will file legislation requiring students to be checked annually to identify possible weight problems.

All students 16 years and younger would be required to have a screening to check their body mass indexes, said State Rep. Richard Morrissette.

Students would be weighed and measured, and the BMI data would be used to determine whether they have excess fat or are underweight.

The cost for scales and other equipment is estimated to be less than $3 million, said Morrissette, D-OKC.

Students in public schools would be checked during the school year. Arrangements would be made for homeschooled students also to be screened, Morrissette said.

"This is not a Democrat or Republican issue; it’s an Oklahoma issue clearly,” Morrissette said.

The checks would find children in the "red zone — those that are in danger of being malnourished or on the other end that their obesity levels are so high that their health is at risk.”

Morrissette, who still is drafting language for the bill, said letters would be sent to parents of students found to be either overweight or underweight.

The letter would tell parents to take the information to a doctor.

However, if parents don’t work with school and health officials, the matter could be turned over to the state Department of Human Services for possible investigation, he said.

"If they’re malnourished in some way, that is some form of abuse,” Morrissette said.

"This is not meant to be punitive; it’s meant to help children,” he added.

Not the first state

About 11 states are performing body mass index checks and related health programs, he said.

Some opposition developed in those states from parents concerned that collecting height and weight data violates the children’s privacy and intrudes into long-held cultural practices.

Morrissette said his legislation would focus on children’s nutrition, not how they appear, saying the shape of someone’s body has little to do with general health.

The intent of his legislation is to educate parents and to bring about opportunities for better health for children who aren’t eating the right kinds of food, he said.

"Oklahoma ranks 45th for overall health,” Morrissette said.

"This is not a physical fitness proposal, nor is it a mandate on personal body type. It is a nutrition bill with a near-zero fiscal impact that has the potential to improve every aspect of life in Oklahoma, as children need to learn at an early age the importance of eating healthy.”

This bill has practically a zero percent chance of making it through. However, I can see some important Republican lawmakers (such as the new Speaker Pro Tempore, Rep. Kris Steele, R-Shawnee) supporting it. There are so many problems with this, it's not even funny.

I suppose that Rep. Morrissette, in the spirit of President-elect Barack Obama, is going to make you lose weight now...

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Democrat Infighting this Session?

Will there be infighting among the Democrats this legislative session? Look at what Sen. Earl Garrison (D, Muskoge) said about Gov. Brad Henry in today's Muskogee Phoenix:
“Republicans have enough votes to pass any workers’ compensation or tort reform you want,” Garrison said. “We have a governor and if he grows a backbone, we will have some vetoes. Miracles happen everyday.
This will be interesting to watch.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Breaking (sorta): Palin Gives Interview as Turkeys Get Slaughtered

It must be a slow news day...

You know, this is one of the most ridiculous things I've seen come from the mainstream media. (Mind you, these are the same folks that delight in gory, blood-soaked movies.)

Watch the video here at Race42012 (formerly Race42008).

Come on, blurring out a turkey sticking out of a cone? I've seen chickens processed the same way up close and personal; it's not that gory, folks. Besides, they taste a bit better when they're not still kicking...

First Steps to the New Soviet Union

Under the guise of dealing with the current financial crisis, the Russian Duma (equivalent to the U.S. House) has passed legislation that would extend the presidential term by two years, and legislative terms by an additional year.
Russian parliament approves longer presidential terms

"Russian lawmakers gave final approval Friday to a bill extending presidential terms, after a speech on the economy by Prime Minister Vladimir Putin revived speculation
over his political ambitions.

The bill, which sailed through the State Duma, the lower house of parliament, would extend presidential terms from four to six years and would be the first change to Russia's post-Soviet constitution adopted in 1993."

"Putin took the political initiative and responsibility" by giving a speech at the party congress "that was meant to be given by Medvedev," the Vedomosti daily newspaper reported Friday, citing political analyst Dmitry Badovsky.

The extension of presidential terms has been seen by some analysts as paving the way for Putin's return to the presidency after he left in May having served the maximum two consecutive terms allowed by the constitution.

"The haste in which the Duma adopted this reform leads one to think that the authorities are speeding up to prepare a return to the Kremlin for Putin," said Yevgeny Volk from the Heritage Foundation, a conservative US think tank.

Vedomosti earlier this month cited two Kremlin sources saying that Medvedev would resign soon after the approval of the amendments and that Putin would then run in a presidential election next year.

The constitution has no provision against former presidents who have already served two terms from running again, as long as some time passes between the end of their second term and their new candidacy."

(rest of article)

And thus begin the first steps to the new and improved Soviet Union...

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Is Conservatism Dead?

After last Tuesday's defeat, and the loss in the 2006 elections, many pundits are claiming that "conservatism" as we know it is dead. After all, let's look at some of the 'facts'.
  • Barack Obama got over 50% of the popular vote; only two Democrats have broken 50% since FDR (Jimmy Carter in 1976, and Lydon Johnson in 1964).
  • Obama won in red states that haven't gone blue in decades, and came close in states that shouldn't have been close.
  • By the time the votes are all counted, the Republican Party will have lost about 55 House seats, and 12-15 Senate seats since 2005.
  • Democrats have won many traditionally Republican seats (House, Senate and Governor) in the past few years, while the GOP struggles to hold on in "safe" Republican areas.
  • The nomination of a moderate Republican (John McCain) for President.
So, in light of these points, is conservatism dead? I beg to differ. The conservative movement is still alive and well, but is in desperate need of a re-awakening.

The Republican Party has drifted far from it's campaign promises of 1994, and has become the big-spending party of today. The GOP has claimed to be the party of limited government, and lower spending, but has not followed through on its promises. As Sen. Tom Coburn (R, OK) said in the recent edition of WORLD Magazine, "People just don't like hypocrites, and they see the Republicans as hypocrites. That's the one thing that is not tolerated in this country. Until you get rid of that and the ethical lapses and have real leadership willing to give up position to stand on principles, you're not going to have people come flocking back to the Republican Party."

If Republicans wish to remain a powerful force in American politics, we must return to our conservative roots, and keep our word. When we say that we'll cut spending, do it. When we say that we'll eliminate earmarks, do it. When we say that we'll stand by our conservative principles, do it, and don't waver in the midst of attack.

This election was not an embracing of liberal ideology, but a rejection of conservative hypocrisy. Had the Republican party been true to its word in the past decade, things might have turned out differently. However, in our haste to seek approval from the media, moderates, and even some liberals, the GOP has lost its honesty and determination. The Republicans did not govern as a majority, for fear of upsetting the Democrats; on the other hand, the Democrats have had no compulsion to kowtow to conservatives. Our spine has grown soft. We may be the Elephant, but we are the Boneless Elephant.

But, these things can change. If conservatives can find their backbone in the coming months and years, and hold to their word, the American people will reward them.

These next few years present a great opportunity for conservatism to stage a major comeback. No, conservatism is not dead; the future is bright, if we stick by our guns.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Obama Won One of Nebraska's Electoral Votes

In a rather surprising outcome of the Presidential election, Barack Obama won one of Nebraska's electoral votes, the first time in history that Nebraska's electors have been split.

Two states, Nebraska and Maine, split electors by congressional district. Instead of the normal winner-takes-all method, two electors from each state go to the state-wide winner, and the rest of the electors go by congressional district.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

The Election

Barack Obama is now the President-elect of the United States of America. Let us hope that the Republicans can wake up, ditch the ineffective leadership we have, and surge back into power in two years.

For example, here in the traditionally Democratic portion of Oklahoma, theGOP is viewed as the party of the rich, and the Democrats are for the ‘working man’. To illustrate this, look at where the Tulsa Republicans and Democrats held their watch parties.

The Tulsa County GOP held their watch party at the Crowne Plaza Hotel. Just look at the spelling on that, and think about it for a bit. 'Crowne', with an 'e', not your typical 'Crown'. Sound a bit upper class? Meanwhile, the Democrats held theirs at the Transport Workers Union Hall. A whole lot more 'working man' than the Crowne Plaza. No wonder those stereotypes are held.

Anyway, on to the races in Oklahoma.

Oklahoma was John McCain's best state, and the only state where he won in all counties. Yes, Oklahoma is the reddest state in the union.

Jim Inhofe won easily. Dan Boren crushed his no-name opponent. By the way, Dan Boren will not be running for Governor in 2010. All of the rest of the O
klahoma federal delegation was re-elected.

Jeff Cloud smashed Charles Gray, and Dana Murphy squeezed by Jim Roth. Poor Dana... both the primary and general election were very close.

In the State House, the GOP gained four seats. The Democrats failed to defeat Reps. George Faught (R, Muskogee), Todd Thomsen (R, Ada), and Dennis Johnson (R, Duncan).

In the State Senate, the Republicans gained two seats, taking the upper house for the first time in state history. Kenny Sherrill came short in his upset bid to take Gene Stipe's old seat. The surprise of the night was how close Sen. Jim Reynolds (R, OKC) came to getting beat by David Boren (no relation to OU President David Boren). The Democrats poured a lot of money in the final weeks to try to pull off a totally unexpected upset.

I will be taking a week-long sabbatical to ponder the results and impacts of this election... so long!

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Election Day

And it begins...

I will be waving signs for most of the day, and will not be able to update the blog more than likely. Keep an eye on those election returns! Remember, McCain 296, Obama 242 (and my other predictions)!

Monday, November 03, 2008

Muskogee Politico's Election Predictions

The Muskogee Politico's Election Predictions


John McCain stages a comeback very much like Harry Truman. McCain gets 296 in the Electoral College, Obama takes 242.

How some of the battleground states fall:

Colorado: Obama
Florida: McCain
Iowa: Obama
Indiana: McCain
Michigan: Obama
Minnesota: McCain
Missouri: McCain
North Carolina: McCain
New Hampshire: Obama
New Mexico: Obama
Nevada: McCain
Ohio: McCain
Pennsylvania: McCain
Virginia: McCain

Yes, I think McCain will pull Minnesota and Pennsylvania...

U.S. Senate and U.S. House
Jim Inhofe and Dan Boren win easily.

Corporation Commission
Jeff Cloud wins; Dana Murphy eeks out a victory (less than 1%).

State House
Republicans gain the Covey seat, lose either the Thomsen and the Dennis Johnson seat. Zero net change in the State House.

State Senate
The Republicans win the Newberry/Riley election, the Morgan seat (Stillwater), and in a stunner, Kenny Sherrill takes the Lerblance/Gene Stipe seat in McAlester. Net gain of 3 seats for the Republicans.

Muskogee Area
Rep. George Faught (R, Muskogee) gets 58% of the vote. Rep. McPeak (D, Warner) and Sheriff Charles Pearson are re-elected by easy margins. County Propositions 1 & 2 pass.

Palin Cleared in 'Troopergate'

Report Clears Palin in Troopergate probe

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) - A report has cleared Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin of ethics violations in the firing of her public safety commissioner.

Released Monday, the report says there is no probable cause to believe Palin or any other state official violated the Alaska Executive Ethics Act in connection with the firing. The report was prepared by Timothy Petumenos, an independent counsel for the Alaska Personnel Board.

Details here.

TvPoll Tracking Polls - Week Eight

TvPoll/KWTV Oklahoma Presidential Tracking Poll (link)
(Poll details and crosstabs - PDF)
  • McCain (R) - 63.2 (61.6)
  • Obama (D) - 33.0 (34.8)
  • Undecided - 3.8 (3.6)
Poll of 720 Likely Voters, October 31-November 2, with a MoE of 3.54%. Last poll's results in parentheses.
This will likely be John McCain's best state.
TvPoll/KWTV Oklahoma U.S. Senate Tracking Poll (link)
(Poll details and crosstabs - PDF)
  • Inhofe (R) - 55.3 (51.3)
  • Rice (D) - 38.9 (41.0)
  • Wallace (I) - 2.9 (3.3)
  • Undecided - 3.0 (4.4)
Poll of 720 Likely Voters, October 31-November 2, with a MoE of 3.54%. Last poll's results in parentheses.
Andrew Rice's run looks like it will be a big failure, as expected. Jim Inhofe is going to have a safe return to the Senate.
TvPoll/KWTV Oklahoma Corp.Comm. (Short Term) Tracking Poll (link)
(Poll details and crosstabs - PDF)
  • Murphy (R) - 35.3 (34.7)
  • Roth (D) - 49.8 (46.7)
  • Undecided -14.9 (18.6)
Poll of 720 Likely Voters, October 31-November 2, with a MoE of 3.54%. Last poll's results in parentheses.
Jim "Bought and Paid For" Roth is practically at 50%. Dana Murphy will need a huge push to win this race.
TvPoll/KWTV Oklahoma Corp. Comm. (Long Term) Tracking Poll (link)
(Poll details and crosstabs - PDF)
  • Cloud (R) - 45.7 (45.9)
  • Gray (D) - 33.2 (31.3)
  • Undecided - 21.1 (22.7)
Poll of 720 Likely Voters, October 31-November 2, with a MoE of 3.54%. Last poll's results in parentheses.
Cloud is a safe bet for re-election.

Voter ID:
  • Democrat - 54.3% (55.3%)
  • Republican - 37.7% (37.7%)
  • Independent - 8.0% (7.0%)

Sunday, November 02, 2008

Saturday, November 01, 2008

Media Bias, Case No. 36,709

H/t to Race42008:

CBS News General Election

  • Barack Obama/Joe Biden 54% (52%)
  • John McCain/Sarah Palin 41% (41%)
  • Undecided 4% (5%)

Survey of 747 likely voters was conducted October 28-31. Party ID breakdown: 40.8% (D); 27.6% (R); 31.6% (I). Results from the poll conducted October 25-29 are in parentheses.

This is the most insane party ID sample I have ever seen. The media is so in the tank for Obama, they're using ridiculous voter samples. There is no way that there is a 23% difference between Republican and Democrat voters, and absolutely no way that Independents outnumber Republicans. For CBS to try to pass this off as a poll is simply laughable.

The pollsters only thought they got a bad reputation after 2004... they ain't seen nothin' yet!

Muskogee Politico's Picks - State-Level Races

Muskogee Politico's Picks for State-Level Races
  • Corporation Commission, Short Term - Dana Murphy (R, Edmond)
The Muskogee Politico is proud to endorse Dana Murphy for Corporation Commission. She is extremely qualified and experienced to hit the ground running, and will be a watchdog ala Bob Anthony.

Her opponent has been 'bought and paid for' by Aubrey McClendon, out-of-state homosexual activists, and other out-of-state donors. His heavily-documented relationship with regulated entities such as Chesapeake Energy is very concerning (for example, paving a little-used road to one of his chief donors' farm). Also, if elected, Jim Roth would be the very first openly homosexual state-wide elected official in the entire nation. Homosexual activists like Colorado's Tim Gill have poured thousands of dollars into Roth's campaign coffers in an attempt to buy this seat for the homosexual movement.

Dana Murphy not only shares our values, but will be an independent voice for Oklahoma, and will be our watchdog at the Corporation Commission.
  • Corporation Commission, Full Term - Jeff Cloud (R, OKC)
We endorse Jeff Cloud for re-election. Cloud has made some mistakes (i.e. the vote against the Red Rock power plant), but we believe that he has done a fairly good job as commissioner.
  • State Question No. 735 - Yes
"This measure amends the Oklahoma Constitution. It adds Section 8D to Article 10. The measure takes effect January 1, 2009. It creates an exemption from personal property tax. The exemption would be for the full amount of taxes due on all household personal property. The exemption would apply to certain injured veterans. It would also apply to those veterans’ surviving spouses. To qualify for the exemption an injured veteran would have to meet certain requirements. First, a branch of the Armed Forces or the Oklahoma National Guard would have to have honorably discharged the veteran from active service. Second, the veteran would have to be an Oklahoma resident. Third, the veteran would have to be the head of the household. Fourth, the veteran would have to be one hundred percent permanently disabled. Fifth, the United States Department of Veterans Affairs would have to certify the disability. Sixth, the disability must have occurred through military action or accident, or resulted from a disease contracted while in active service. The Legislature could pass laws to carry out the exemption. Such laws could not change the amount of the exemption."
The Muskogee Politico strongly endorses this question. Our disabled veterans have paid a great price with their service, and should be rewarded in this small way.
  • State Question No. 741 - Yes
"This measure amends the Oklahoma Constitution. It would add a new Section 22A to Article 10. This section is related to exemptions from property taxes. It would require a person or business to file an application for an exemption. No exemption could be granted prior to filing an application. The Legislature may write laws to carry out the provisions of this section."
We endorse this state question. I believe this is mainly some clean-up language that closes a loophole in the tax structure; to get an exemption you have to file an application to get it.
  • State Question No. 742 - Yes
"This measure adds a new section to the State Constitution. It adds Section 36 to Article 2. It gives all people of this state the right to hunt, trap, fish and take game and fish. Such activities would be subject to reasonable regulation. It allows the Wildlife Conservation Commission to approve methods and procedures for hunting, trapping, fishing and taking of game and fish. It allows for taking game and fish by traditional means. It makes hunting, fishing, and trapping the preferred means to manage certain game and fish. The new law will not affect existing laws relating to property rights."
The Muskogee Politico definitely endorses this state question, especially with the possibility of an anti-Second Amendment President and Congress looming on the horizon.
  • State Question No. 743 - Your Pick
"This measure amends Section 3 of Article 28 of the Constitution. It requires a customer to be twenty-one and physically present to purchase wine at a winery, festival or trade show. The measure changes the law to allow certain winemakers to sell directly to retail package stores and restaurants in Oklahoma. The change applies to winemakers who produce up to ten thousand gallons of wine a year. It applies to winemakers in state and out of state. Those winemakers may not also use a licensed wholesale distributor. They must sell their wine to every retail package store and restaurant in Oklahoma that wants to buy the wine. The sales must be on the same price basis. The sales must be without discrimination. Those winemakers must use their own leased or owned vehicles to distribute their wine. They may not use common or private carriers. If any part of this measure is found to be unconstitutional, no winemaker could sell wine directly to retail package stores or restaurants in Oklahoma."
This one really is up to you. It would make it easier for small-production Oklahoma wineries to sell their product here in the state. As it is now, they cannot sell directly to Oklahoma customers (i.e. people who come to their wineries); they must go through a wholesaler. I'm personally against alcoholic beverages, so I might vote against this just on principle.