Another Paul Person
This just further reemphasizes the complete failure of John Flynn to recruit credible candidates to run for office, in both the 2nd and 3rd Congressional districts.
Official Blog of Brian Griffiths
"Thank goodness for Brian Griffiths!" - G.A. Harrison
"Brian is the Godfather of the Maryland Blogosphere" - Mark Newgent
"Jim Pelura meets the qualifications of the Chairman that we need, and I am extremely enthusiastic about his prospects as Chairman."I wrote that one year ago today. Man, have things changed.
I was told that Flynn and Pelura are trying to take the Treasurer and Secretary's votes away on Executive Committee.
I was also told they have lost their last supporters on the executive committee. The problem now is that there is no new candidate that everyone will jump behind.
Make of it what you will.
Here’s one persons opinions of the proposed Changes to State GOP Constitution and By-Laws:
This is a naked power grab by Pelura and John Flynn. This gives them absolute power over the State GOP and the County Central Committees and significant power over Elected Officials and Candidates (via a new State GOP primary endorsement mechanism). Furthermore, the ability to disagree or to speak up has been severely curtailed. Finally, if you cause too much trouble, you can be easily removed.
Other key points are that there is no place for Clubs or Activists to speak or to be heard. There is no mechanism to curtail spending, even though the State GOP is thousands and thousands of dollars in debt. There are two very personal proposals, one to give John Flynn a significant salary increase and the other to ensure that Brian Harlin can never be the Chairman of a County Central Committee or on the Executive Committee.
1. Currenlty, there is no method in the State GOP Constitution or By-Laws by which the State GOP may involve itself in a contested Republican State legislative, County or City primary election. The proposed change would allow the State GOP to pick sides in a primary by a simply 2/3's vote in the State Executive Committee. It should be noted that for Federal Candidates, the(and ergo the State GOP) have a mechanism that allows pre-primary support.
It should be noted that many believe that Jim Pelura and his staff (vis-a-vis John Flynn) have spent the Summer and the Fall stacking the Executive Committee to ensure a 2/3's majority. Dirk Haire removed, Mike Collins removed, etc.
2. The Brian Harlin Rule (as allegedly named by John Flynn). A proposed resolution would ensure that people like Brian Harlin (staunch supporter and former Central Committee Chair from Howard County) could never be elected to the State GOP since they have a business that serves Republican candidates.
3. Proposal to change the Convention Rules. This change requires convention attendees to propose any changes to the rules prior to the convention. What is not said, however, is that no convention rule changes will be allowed once the convention starts. Furthermore, the Proposed Convention Rules are extremely restrictive and preserve almost complete control and power to the Chairman (i.e., Pelura). In addition, the Convention Rules do not allow anyone other than elected officials and executive and from talking. Furthermore, if you are not a member or an elected official, Pelura has the right to have the Sergeant at Arms (i.e. Bouncer) remove you from the room. Finally, Pelura has the right to cut off discussion by any person if he believes it to be a personal attack or innuendo.
4. Proposal to state that may not endorse Democrats or Independents in any race that includes a Republican. What is missing is the same requirement for the Executive Committee and the State GOP Staff.
5. Proposal to ensure that members of the Executive Committee not be elected officials nor a candidate. What is missing is the same requirement for .
6. Proposal to give Pelura unfettered authority to reinstate John Flynn's previous salary - even though State GOP is between $100k and $150k in debt and even though previous Executive Committee cut John Flynn's salary.
7. Proposal to increase the number of Executive Committee members by two (move from 3 Vice Chairs to 5 Regional Chairs). This idea is not being supported by Flynn and Pelura. Such an increase would make it harder for them to get a 2/3's majority (see above).
8. Proposal to require an Oath of Office for . Key is that you must swear true allegiance to the State GOP Constitution and By-Laws. So, if a Central Committee Member disagrees with something Pelura or the Executive Committee or John Flynn does, they have violated the Oath and can therefore be removed from Central Committee.
Labels: 2007 State GOP Bylaw Amendments
Garry Kasparov, the former chess champion and opposition leader, was arrested Saturday and sentenced to five days in jail after trying to lead a march to the offices of the federal election authorities.
Mr. Kasparov was taken into custody during a scuffle between protesters and security officers on the route to the offices, where he had intended to present a letter asserting that the parliamentary election on Dec. 2 was biased toward President Vladimir V. Putin's party.
Taken into a small bus, he gave a victory sign through the back window as he was being driven away.
On Saturday night, a Moscow judge ordered him to serve five days in jail for holding an unauthorized march. City officials had given his loose opposition coalition, Other Russia, permission to conduct a rally on Saturday, but not a march.
In a statement, Mr. Kasparov said the court proceedings had been “a choreographed farce from beginning to end.” He added, “It was a symbol of what has happened to justice and the rule of law under Putin.”
I think we can all agree that President Bush misfired just a touch when he looked into Putin's soul. I mean, they've threatened missile attacks, they have opened reeducation camps, and now have moved on to arresting protesters.
The justices should recognize that law professors are not always straight shooters.I couldn't have said it better myself. Because Lasson drapes his warped views on the subject around nothing but his own background as a hack masquerading as a law professor.
Local government officials could block the legalization of slot machine gambling in their communities even if voters in 2008 approve a ballot initiative passed this week in the General Assembly, a lawyer with the Maryland attorney general's office said yesterday.All of this means the knuckleheaded Democrats who included those mandated locations in the Amendment are realistically setting the entire enterprise up for failure. And frankly, this makes me even more infuriated at the Republicans who knifed the party by supporting this amendment. If slots fails, either at the ballot box or upon implementation, because of these particular zoning issues, it is going to lead to (what else) even higher taxes. And I don't think that fiscal conservatives are going to forget that the next time these five run for re-election...
A little-noticed provision in the referendum legislation that orders state slots operators to comply with local zoning regulations essentially allows local authorities to exercise final say, said Kathryn M. Rowe, an assistant state attorney general who deals with bills passed by the legislature.
The threat of local opposition sets up yet another battleground in what many believe will be a fierce referendum campaign on slot machines leading up to the November 2008 election....
...Should slots not go forward in Anne Arundel and Worcester, the number of machines proposed by the governor would be cut almost in half - taking away a large amount of the $650 million in state revenues expected annually from slot machines for public education and health care. The state's horse industry would also be affected, as the Anne Arundel and Worcester slots sites are expected to be at two racetracks, Laurel Park and Ocean Downs.
It's good that the special session didn't collapse, but I frankly would not have been surprised if it had. There was an unbelievable amount of things the General Assembly had to deal with -- not just the budget, but also Medicaid, Chesapeake Bay cleanup, a transportation package, etc. It was simply a lot, even too much, for a legislature to handle in the space of three weeks. As a result, the process was ugly, even by saugage(sic)-making standards.He is right that the process was ugly, and he is right that there was too much on the docket for a three week span.
Leopold was upset, though, that the General Assembly stole an idea he has pushed as a local revenue source - a higher rental car tax.Aw....let's throw a pity party for Tax Hike John.
"I proposed a car-rental tax on out-of-state residents," that could have raised $5 million a year for the county, he said, but the Arundel delegation of state legislators rejected the idea.
Instead, the state will now impose a tax on all renters, including Maryland residents, and keep the proceeds to help pay for a new Chesapeake Bay restoration fund.
What a bunch of ridiculous, brown-nosing, ass kissing, embarrassing, pathetic, juvenile drivel. It is sad that such garbage even gets printed in a "major" daily newspaper...
For three weeks, the State House has operated as a crucible as Gov. Martin O'Malley put the heat on the General Assembly to shape a compromise over his deficit-reduction package. It wasn't always pretty. But in the end, lawmakers cast the tough votes to raise taxes and gave the governor much of what he wanted.
It was an impressive victory for Mr. O'Malley - with significant and lasting implications. At a minimum, it means the state's structural deficit has finally been brought under control beyond the piecemeal, "take from Peter to pay Paul" approach of the last administration.
While next year's projected $1.7 billion deficit has been largely resolved, it will still require significant spending cuts. But there's no reason to expect the problem to return within the next several years - if appropriate spending discipline is maintained.
Marylanders will feel a pinch in their pocketbooks every time they shop for clothes, buy a pack of cigarettes or get their computers fixed under the tax plan signed Monday by Gov. Martin O'Malley.And....how many of us again said that a majority of taxpayers would feel the burn on this?
When the Democratic governor first unveiled his budget-balancing plan, he said 83 percent of residents would pay less taxes. But after the General Assembly made several changes and dropped a proposed property tax break, only about 45 percent would pay less or see no change, O'Malley said Monday.
Labels: 2008 Congression Elections
"The governor took it all on his shoulders, and the legislature pretty much followed. . . . We've basically, in my estimate, taken a full legislative year of work and condensed it into 20 days."I'm not sure what is more offensive to the process of representative government, that the Speaker is proud that the Legislative Branch took its marching orders from the Executive Branch, or that the Legislative Branch basically inflicted a number of financial calamities on the taxpayers of the state without due and thoughtful consideration.
"Common sense and reason went out the window just to give the governor a victory...I think this whole thing has been a debacle, and taxpayers are stuck holding the bill."I think that the Senator was being polite by merely calling it a debacle. It reality, what we have just been witness to is one of the more crass victories of special interests over taxpayers that we have seen in our state. To the legislative leadership, it was more important to make the Governor look good, to grow the size of government, and to make sure taxpayers have less money in their pockets than it was to do what was right and what was proper.
One thing is clear. O'Malley emerges from the Special Session as a bold and decisive "can-do" leader. He knew what needed to be done. He put together a comprehensive and reasonable legislative package. He took a huge risk by calling a Special Session when the outcome was far from assured. He had the humility to treat the Assembly and its leaders as equal partners.Where to begin? The Governor's legislative package was comprehensive only in the fact that he attempted to raise many taxes at once. At no point can any portion of the Governor's package be considered reasonable, however, when one takes into account that O'Malley's understanding of economics led him to the conclusion that in order to fix an alleged deficit that the state needed to spend more money. That's only reasonable if you are insane.
Environmental activists are frustrated. They can't get the issue of global warming into the presidential campaign.Good for them that they took the issue into their own hands. But at this stage national security, Iraq, and the economy half to take precedence over this.
So a coalition of environmental groups, led by online magazine Grist.org and Public Radio International's "Living on Earth,'' held the first-ever presidential forum on global warming in Los Angeles on Saturday.
Labels: Global Warming
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I bet they are a bit surprised that former Frederick Mayor Jennifer Dougherty filed for the seat today....
- Me, 11/16/07
Labels: General Assembly
It's something to keep in the back of our minds for 2010, and another reason that any effort at "incumbent protection" should be rebuffed at our upcoming Fall Convention.Because the last thing that the state party needs to be doing right now is to protect any Republican who led us down this road of tax increases. This is the time to avoid any Linc Chafee/NRSC moments and to make sure that the bylaws are not amended to give protection to any incumbent (or any challenger to an incumbent, for that matter, given the current environment in certain Congressional races).
Voters are likely to get the final say on whether to welcome slot-machine gambling to Maryland, following passage early this morning of legislation by the House of Delegates that provides details of a plan to place 15,000 machines at five locations around the state.
The 71 to 44 vote, which came at 1:40 a.m., was the second action needed to execute a proposal by Gov. Martin O'Malley (D) to hold a referendum next November on legalizing slots at venues in Baltimore and Allegany, Anne Arundel, Cecil and Worcester counties.
And even then the didn't adjourn until closer to 2.
Officials say they hope to avoid increasing local taxes to make up for lost funding.Once again noting that Leopold has never made a commitment he could keep, be prepared for a lot of Leopold's pet-tax projects to be repackaged as fees very soon...
"I made a commitment in my campaign not to increase property or income taxes," said Anne Arundel Executive John R. Leopold, a Republican.
But that doesn't mean he won't try to raise fees. "I'm going to try to secure revenues outside of property and income taxes," and by cutting expenses, he said.
Labels: General Assembly
State transportation officials say Columbia's future might not include rail transit despite pleas to extend such service to the county's largest community.
Howard Del. Elizabeth Bobo (D) asked state officials last year to study whether Washington's Metro rail system or the MARC, the state's commuter rail service, could run to Columbia. But state officials have told Bobo in recent weeks that both options would cost billions over the next 30 years, a prohibitive expense. That should provide local officials with "a little dose of reality," Bobo said.
But they could move forward if a bid went out to private contractors to determine the costs to build such a system privately. I would be willing to be that a number of companies would be willing to build and operate a Metro, MARC, or Light Rail extension if given the opportunity to bid. The concept that a multi-billion project such as this has to be constructed using only state funds is outmoded, and leads to further traffic delays, congestion, and projects that take fifty years to complete.
A key House subcommittee today recommended adding Frederick County and possibly Harford County to the list of sites where slot machines would be placed and knocking out Worcester County, home to the Ocean Downs racetrack and a site strongly opposed by many local officials and residents.OK, the long and the short of it is that nobody can agree on the details of the slots plan. Everybody wants the slots in differently places, mainly due to rampant NIMBY-ism.
House leaders say a location near Interstates 70 and 270 would attract gamblers from Montgomery County who now drive to Charles Town Races and Slots in West Virginia. They said they believe it would be significantly more lucrative to the state than the slots parlor at Ocean Downs envisioned in the gambling bill that Gov. Martin O'Malley submitted and the state Senate approved.
Both the O'Malley administration and Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller have said they don't want to see major changes to the slots legislation at this late date in the current special session of the General Assembly. But they have also said they will be flexible about the details as long as the legislature votes to put a slot machine gambling referendum on the November 2008 ballot.
It's actually worse than that because they hide that stupidity with this stupidity:
THERE'LL be no ho, ho, ho this Christmas. Aspiring Santas have been told not to use the term "ho" because it could be seen as derogatory to women.
Thirty trainees at a Santa course in Adelaide last month, held by recruitment company Westaff, were urged to replace the traditional festive greeting with "ha, ha, ha".
A Santa veteran of 11 years who attended the course told the Sunday Mail the trainer was very clear in spelling out no to "ho".
Two Santa hopefuls reportedly left the course after the trainer's edict.
Westaff national operations manager Glen Jansz said the company's Santas had been urged to "tone down" their use of the "ho, ho, ho" phrase – but he said it wasn't for fear of offending women.
"The reason behind that is we find that in some cases the little kids can get a little bit scared of the deep ho, ho, hos and we ask them to be mindful of keeping their voices to a lower level," he said.
"And kids are probably more inclined to understand `ha, ha, ha', than `ho, ho, ho'."
House budget writers Monday identified nearly $500 million in potential savings in next year's budget, including recommendations to freeze inflation increases in the state's Thornton education funding plan, eliminate vacant state jobs, and tap surplus funds in the state health insurance fund.
"We're at a point where some very, very tough decisions have to be made," said Norman H. Conway, chairman of the House Appropriations Committee, before the committee approved the bill to reduce spending by $498 million in the fiscal year 2009 budget.
The full House of Delegates takes up the proposed cuts Tuesday as part of the General Assembly's special session to close a $1.7 billion budget gap for the next fiscal year.
I mean don't get me wrong, it's a start, albeit it far from anything close to what should be happening in regards to budget cuts. But it appears that the Democrats in the House had a Eureka! moment sometime in the last few days and realized that if they are going to pillage the people with massive tax hikes, maybe they should at least make the appearance of trying to get their own spending house in order.
But of course, this is not the land of milk and honey. Because some of our own people are complaining; yes, some Republican Delegates are complaining about cuts!
Del. Steve Schuh, an Anne Arundel County Republican, said that while he supported the final bill in committee, he would like to have seen spending curtailed even more.
He also criticized the deficit-reduction plan being crafted by Democrats because it would raise a variety of taxes and relies on revenue from legalized slot-machine gambling that wouldn't kick in for several years. The slots proposal would be put to voters in a November 2008 referendum if the legislation passes.
"If you blow it on spending restraint and if you blow it on slots, you're backed into a fiscal corner of having to raise taxes in a very big way to balance the budget," Schuh said.
But other Republican legislators Monday balked at some of the small spending reductions.
Del. Susan L.M. Aumann, a Baltimore County Republican, opposed a measure to keep grants to private colleges at the current fiscal year amount, which would save the state $3.4 million. She expressed concern that more students will leave Maryland to attend private colleges.
As I noted a few days ago, the $62 million grant in the Sellinger Formula to private colleges is ridiculous in the first place. Del. Aumann's consternation at a $3.4 million cut to Sellinger aid is disturbing, because it makes me wonder if some of our own Republican Delegates are committed merely to only opposing tax cuts: that these legislators, in actuality, support the continued feeding of this governmental beast.
$500 million in cuts are a good thing. Let's find another $1.5 billion and get this tax hike off of the backs of Maryland's working families...
"Hollywood's not being held hostage. ... I think [the studios] are going to break the Guild," he said, later remarking: "Millionaires on the picket line. ... They're not going to get a lot of empathy."
Somebody in Hollywood gets it. Writers are disposable. Writers are a dime a dozen. Virtually anybody can write most of the drivel that passes for entertainment these days. Sure, there are a few good shows (House, Numb3rs, Family Guy), but for every good show that goes on the air there are ten shows that are terrible. Machinists, skilled workers, technical workers aren't. And the writers may find all of this out the hard way...
Groups of women are gathering at homes across America for Taser parties, where the guns are presented with wine and cheese, similar to earlier Tupperware parties.I can think of more effective methods of self-defense, but this is a positive step too...
A host at the parties explains the value of owning a personal Taser gun and then women are allowed to look at and handle the devices, which include a metallic pink gun.
Lisa Rigberg, who hosted a recent Taser party in an upscale Arizona neighborhood, said the guns are a must-have for women."It's light, it's small and it comes in colors," Rigberg said. "But if you know you are going to be in a certain situation where you might be uncomfortable, why not have it with you? It just makes you more confident."
‘‘It’s pivotal in the fact that Governor Ehrlich is the Republican Party in Maryland,” said Harris campaign director Chris Meekins. ‘‘It not only brings grass-roots support, but also a lot of his senators and his money people will be willing to open up their checkbooks.”Well, there are two things here that just drive me crazy.
One year to Election Day, and the struggling Republican Party is looking for much more than a new leader.Read the whole thing. Clearly, the branding issue is a concern of more than just a few guys from Maryland on a podcast. It is an issue of paramount importance to the future of the party, and the main reason I get indignant and angry when Republicans here in Maryland do things like this and this that do great damage to our brand.
"It takes time to damage a brand," says South Carolina's Republican governor, Mark Sanford. "It takes even longer to rebuild it."
Sanford is a low-taxes, low-spending type who believes the GOP has lost its credibility as the party of fiscal conservatism.
"The Republican Party, I think, has really been hurt with regard to its brand on the degree to which it will walk the walk on government spending and government taxes," Sanford told CNN in a recent interview at his State Capital office in Columbia.
Is it grounds to support a reactionary filibuster that could lead to bankrupting the state? Of course not.So...on what grounds does Young Master Kujan believe that we should support additional government spending that will lead to bankrupting the state?
It is the greatest scam in history. I am amazed, appalled and highly offended by it. Global Warming; It is a SCAM. Some dastardly scientists with environmental and political motives manipulated long term scientific data to create an allusion of rapid global warming. Other scientists of the same environmental whacko type jumped into the circle to support and broaden the "research" to further enhance the totally slanted, bogus global warming claims. Their friends in government steered huge research grants their way to keep the movement going. Soon they claimed to be a consensus.
Environmental extremists, notable politicians among them, then teamed up with movie, media and other liberal, environmentalist journalists to create this wild "scientific" scenario of the civilization threatening environmental consequences from Global Warming unless we adhere to their radical agenda. Now their ridiculous manipulated science has been accepted as fact and become a cornerstone issue for CNN, CBS, NBC, the Democratic Political Party, the Governor of California, school teachers and, in many cases, well informed but very gullible environmentally conscientious citizens. Only one reporter at ABC has been allowed to counter the Global Warming frenzy with one 15 minute documentary segment.I do not oppose environmentalism. I do not oppose the political positions of either party. However, Global Warming, i.e. Climate Change, is not about environmentalism or politics. It is not a religion. It is not something you "believe in." It is science; the science of meteorology. This is my field of life-long expertise. And I am telling you Global Warming is a non-event, a manufactured crisis and a total scam...
Labels: Global Warming
"For the first time in Anne Arundel County, the public has the chance to provide direct input into the selection of school board members," Leopold said. "It's a compromise solution that was elusive for more than two decades."Once again, John Leopold can't be honest about his school board selection plan. If the plan truly were to provide direct input into the selection of school board members as Leopold attests, then the voters would be provided with a choice of candidates in a general election. Merely voting up or down nominees put forth by a nominating commission of the intelligentsia has the same legitimacy as one-party elections do in Cuba.