Politics, open government, and safe streets. And the constant incursion of cycling.

Month: October 2008 Page 1 of 12

More on Prop 8

Here’s an excellent rundown of the state of things for Prop 8, which I am rather worried about.  2006 was a great year for Democrats nationwide (and even in Virginia), but it was hard to really enjoy it after it became clear that Virginia’s Marshall-Newman Amendment passed.  Prop 8 doesn’t go as far as that measure, but it’s success would be a very bitter pill to swallow next Tuesday.

A reminder that California has a moral obligation, here:


Weekend Music: Me Me Me Edition

Probably a bit of Me Decade overkill, but for some of you, that’s just not possible.  (More music to come, this weekend.)






Update: Stupid Youtube.  This is the last one.

The Difference

A devastating look at the difference between the Obama and McCain ground games.  With pictures.

Friday Notes: Clock Watching Edition

Busy week, and it’ll only get busier between now and Election Day.  At the moment, however, I’m killing some time at home until the lines for in-person absentee voting (hopefully) shrink.  Just popped over there during lunch, and the line was about two hours long.  I did what every pollwatcher fears – I left (as they don’t think you’ll come back (and most don’t)).  But I figure I’ll get some work done here and then head back in a bit, bringing some reading to catch up on (no phones allowed).  Could be worse – I could be in those 5-8 hour lines down in Georgia.


Despite my generally writing him off as someone whose judgment I respect over the Iraq war, I’ve been reading Andrew Sullivan on a regular basis, these days.  His struggle with reconciling his conservative principles with the Republican party has been honest and public.   He says:

I face the dilemma every time I go to a college campus and speak about conservatism. When you use the c-word among the next generation, they no longer associate it with small government, individual freedom, humble faith, balanced budgets, respect for tradition or a strong but prudent foreign policy. They think of religious fanaticism, big spending, massive debt, and social intolerance. When I give my stump speech in defense of the conservatism I lay out in my book, there is considerable interest, but it sounds nothing like the current GOP. I come close to washing my hands of the word as Randolph is.

But remember: we had this word first. We can and must reclaim it.

I’ve got some sympathy for him, but something tells me he’s going to be about as successful in doing that as Jay Randal was in his mission to take back another word, in Clerks II (warning, that link leads to something that is almost certain to offend).


Dallas Mavericks owner and gazillionaire Mark Cuban may be a dick, but he sure is an admirably public-minded one:

Transparency is key to the success of the Bailout and related loans and investments the government makes with our tax dollars. Without complete transparency, we will get from our government what we always get when it comes to finances, confusion. To do my part, I’ve worked with the folks at Sharesleuth.com to create Bailoutsleuth.com

Its job is simple, keep an eye on our taxpayer dollars and call Bullshit when necessary.

if you take a trip over to Bailoutsleuth you can see that its already time to call BS. In the first contract handed out, in this case to Bank of NY Mellon Corp, the compensation section is blacked out.

Sad. So very sad, that we couldnt make it a week without being afraid of the very taxpayers who are footing the tab for all of this.

Bailoutsleuth will try to publish every day in keeping up with how our taxdollars are spent and the people and companies that are impacted by this program. We are still a work in progress and look forward to your comments , feedback and tips.

He’s got a solid track record in this business, too (see Sharesleuth.com).


The chance that any DC bike messengers read Blacknell.net is something close to nil, I think, but I’m pretty sure I’ve got a number of messenger-sympathizers (like terrorist-sympathizers, but different).  So in case you’re interested, maybe come check out the Obamallycat tomorrow.  Folks won’t only be racing for victory and beer, but also this sweet prize.  I’ll be there.


How do you talk about the word “Fuck” without saying “Fuck”?   Similarly, can one broadcast a Supreme Court case about broadcasting the word “Fuck” without broadcasting the word “Fuck”?  Fuck if I know.


Update: An excellent Halloween tip.  And on that note, since my profanity has probably triggered the corporate firewalls and linking to terribly offensive movie clips has already filtered out the folks who would most object, here’s a Sarah Palin song for you:


Mr. “Oh, I run a *family* blog” made me do it.

CA’s Prop 8: Still Viable

All of the polling I’ve seen shows equal support and opposition to California’s Proposition 8.  That’s not good enough, for something so very important.   Please talk it up not just amongst your CA friends (who likely already agree with you) but with your acquaintences, neighbors, and random people you meet.   The margin could be so thin that it makes a difference.  This is just too important to hope someone else will carry the burden against it.  More here.

Tempelhof Closes

I had no idea that Berlin’s Tempelhof airport was closing.  Last flight out is tonight.  Kicking myself for never having made it there.

(Tempelhof was many things, including being the airport that made the Berlin Airlift possible.)

Watch Out, Saxby . . .

they’re a’comin’!

People in the Middle

If you can put aside your (justified, in my opinion) reflexive “WTF is wrong with you?” response when you hear someone say “Fiscally, I’m Republican, socially I’m a Democrat”, you should check out this site.  It features a series of short statements by “people in the middle for Obama”, as filmed by Errol Morris.  Really well done, I think.

Godless Money for Kay Hagan

Elizabeth Dole is running for reelection as North Carolina’s Senator, nevermind her truly abysmal legislative record and almost complete lack of interest in the state (she managed to only be in North Carolina for a grand total of 13 days, in 2006).  Her opponent is Kay Hagan, and despite my recent resolution that I was done with political contributions for this cycle, Ms. Hagan just got another one from me.  Why?  Elizabeth Dole is going all out with this ad (keep in mind that Kay Hagan, in addition to being a state senator, is a Sunday school teacher):


After that, I just had to give a bit of my godless money to Hagan.  And this is no sympathy change – Hagan’s polling ahead (just) of Dole.  Here’s hoping both Doles finish their careers in defeat.

Midweek Makeover: Redefining “Rich” Edition

Just a bit of fun.


and then


and most recently


Updated to avoid a serious omission.

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