Friday, February 12, 2010

Mayor Dave Carey Moves Another Buddy Into The Office Next Door

I've previously mentioned what I feel is the Inherent Weaselity™ of the current Borough Administration headed up by the inherently weasely Dave Carey.

Today, Borough Mayor Dave Carey's office issued a press release, saying that 
"Due to the recent resignation of the Chief of Staff, whose last day will be February 19, 2010, Mayor David Carey is announcing that Duane Bannock, currently the Manager of the Spruce Bark Beetle Program, has been named as the Acting Chief of Staff."
The "recently resigned" (apparently, he who henceforth shall remain nameless) Chief of Staff, Hugh "Scooter" Chumley, got out while the getting was good, I expect.

The release goes on to say:
"Mr. Bannock brings with him many years of experience as a Business Manager, and he possesses the skills and knowledge to oversee the current duties of this office."
Well, okay.  
If you say so, Dave.  

But, as my fellow local blogger SOL in SOLdotna has noted, there are people who might question the value of Mr. Bannock's "many years of experience..." especially when he was manager of Kenai Chrysler.

To paraphrase the old Chinese curse, it appears we're in for some "interesting times."

And there's another, almost as interesting item noted in the press release:
During this time, Susan Wilcox, Special Assistant to the Mayor, has been named as the
Administrative Officer for the Kenai Peninsula Borough.
Huh.  How about that?  Administrative Officer!  That sounds Important™!

Wait a second... what does the Borough Administrative Officer do, anyway?

Someone I know who works there is guessing that the AO's duties are the duties that were once handled by the very competent yet unceremoniously fired 25+ year Borough veteran General Services Manager (and Human Resources Director) Richard Campbell... and that Richard performed them in addition to his GSM/HR Director job.

However, word on the street is that Campbell's immediately hired replacement, Bonita Miller, after a year on the job, still hasn't exactly got a handle on the HR part... so maybe this is a way to relieve her burden a little, and allow her to focus on the ongoing contract negotiations with the Kenai Borough Employees Association

Or, maybe I'm reading way more into it than it really is.
Maybe it's just a way to reinstate Ms. Wilcox's salary without incurring the wrath of the Assembly.

Carey can't be THAT dumb, can he?

Yes, it's a rhetorical question.

(h/t to SOL in SOLdotna.)

Thursday, February 11, 2010

A Stare - Down With President Obama... And The GOP Blinks.

President Obama held a bipartisan meeting at the White House with congressional leaders on Tuesday, and it apparently was a humdinger.

The major topic of discussion was the unprecedented number of Obama appointments that until today, had been held hostage by the GOP through the use of arcane Senate rules. 

One major offender who made the news lately is Sen. Richard Shelby, R-AL, who is in some sort of pissing match with the Pentagon over a refueling tanker contract that could benefit his state.  Blackmailing for Pork™ is standard practice for the GOP (who at the same time decry "big government spending").

Anyway - at that meeting, Mr. Obama warned that he would borrow a page from G.W. Bush's book, and make recess appointments (in his first six years in office, Bush made 167 recess appointments) if the GOP didn't stop this crap... and they'd better start NOW by confirming some appointees before the Senate left for the Presidents’ Day break.  He directed this threat at Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.).

From an article at Politico:
“Mitch, this is unprecedented,” the president said, gesturing forcefully on the Cabinet Room table, according to aides. “If you don’t move any, I’m going to do some [recess] appointments.”
Apparently, Mitch believed him, because in an effort to prove they're so "bipartisany" and not "obstructionist," today the Senate, by unanimous consent, approved 27 nominees.

While he was obviously pleased with the Senate's action, in a prepared statement today, President Obama noted:
“There are still dozens of nominees on hold who deserve a similar vote, and I will be looking for action from the Senate when it returns from recess. If they do not act, I reserve the right to use my recess appointment authority in the future.”

In Honor Of The Birthday of Sarah Palin (or, She Who Would Be President™)

Now, everyone knows about the recent silliness stupidity of Sarah Palin writing notes on her palm so she could remember those pesky, really tough GOP talking points like "tax cuts" and "energy" at the 1st Annual Teabag Party Convention... while at the same time snarkily referring to the POTUS as just "a guy with a teleprompter."

Well, Sarah, since we know you're all "preachy" and "Christian" and everything, I'd like to point out a passage from the Bible you might  do well to remember:
You hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of your own eye; and then shall you see clearly to cast out the mote out of your brother's eye. -- Matthew 7:5
Here's proof of the Birthday Girl's hypocrisy, a screen capture of her State of the State Address in January of 2009, after the McCain/Palin loss in November.

Here's another screen capture:

Ah well...  what can you expect from a "girl with a telepalmer."

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Stalking Sarah

Since my friend in Alaska is so kind as to allow me cross-posting privileges, I'd like to update Alaskans on what happened in Nashville, Tennessee yesterday at a publicly-funded and privately-profitable Versailles Palace where I went stalking Sarah.

I kid, I kid. I don't give two shits about Sarah. Her speech was a bizarre exercise in stage management that still revealed her incredible weaknesses.

But last night was interesting.
I needed to be in Nashville yesterday anyway, so I crashed the tea party at the Gaylord (heh!) Grand Ole Opry Hotel and Convention Center to catch as much video as possible. I went as a citizen journalist with every intention of promoting my work via Huffington Post in all probability, but in the form of You Tube video that will be available elsewhere (including, and especially, my own website).
I introduced myself as Matt Osborne to everyone who asked. No one asked if I was with a media organization, including the woman who eventually "threw me out," until Sarah's speech was over and I was literally leaving the way I'd come. I got silent video of convention participants and Judge Roy Moore of Ye Ten Commandments. I talked to "media colleagues" and got samples of the propaganda. Though I was refused entry to the ballroom to so much as take a photo of Sarah, I watched a little of her speech on somebody's laptop.
After getting shots through the wide-open banquet hall doors, I proceeded to interview two participants off-camera for research purposes. I didn't take quotes and continued introducing myself as Matt Osborne.I say all of this as prologue to explain that I'm working on a video involving Andy Breitbart; I was hoping to run into him, but was more concerned with getting video to lay out the narrative of astroturfery and right-wing nontroversy. If you follow my posts at HuffPo or my blog, you know that these are very big areas of interest for me; they're subjects on which Maddow has reported as well.
So just in case I ran into Breitbart, I had decided to adopt the O'Keefe method: I went under pretext. The best part is, I did not lie about these things, and still got plenty of video. As far as professional ethics go, I think I did pretty well. My girlfriend thought it would be fun to try and say she was a high school senior working on a report for her government class; she does in fact appear quite young, but she's no professional. Nevertheless, it's her camera.
As I said, I got GREAT video that will be ready later today (I hope), but I didn't get to meet or see Breitbart. So I was on my way out the same way I came in (the back door leads to the Opry Mills Mall parking lot; the facility has 24-7 public access) when I was stopped by a woman who claimed to be the event's media liaison.
She had the a sharp, angry tone of a harpy. Mind you, this woman had already caught sight of us and the camera shortly after we came in and did nothing. When I now held out my hand and introduced myself as Matt Osborne, she asked me who I was with and I suddenly grew devil's horns. Remember, I had already done what I'd come to do; just to find out what would happen, I said two words that may get me in real trouble:

"Huffington Post."

I said that because (of course) Huffington Post is not a "real media organization" (while Breitbart, who borrowed the Huffington Post business model to spread demonstrable lies and paranoid racist agit-prop, was a central figure at the convention). Huffington Post alone does not get invited to the tea party. Wing Nut Daily is more "respectable."
The harpy said I would have been treated like any other media organization if I had checked in with her, but I got VIDEO of their plan for me. No thanks -- the media room was on the opposite end of the extremely large building, and reporters from other news agencies tdescribed an oppressive atmosphere.
Remember, I used public access. I took video of people already appearing on video. I didn't tape or record interviews. As far as ethics are concerned, I'll gladly compare mine to James O'Keefe any bloody day. Which must be why I grinned when the harpy said she should have expected as much, that HuffPo was an unprofessional outfit and I was the perfect example.
I tore a page out of the Breitbart-O'Keefe playbook and she called me "unprofessional." Let that sink in.
Anyway: the harpy texted or tweeted someone. I did not have a press credential from HuffPo (I don't think they have any, actually) so I began to explain that I am an unpaid blogger for Huffington Post...but she was already calling security as the words started coming out of my mouth.
The harpy said that I was to be detained and held for questioning, which was not about to happen for any number of reasons. It's still the goddamn United States of America; I am not easily intimidated by civilians playing tinfoil god. I also found her highly offensive, so I just said "no" and turned to walk away.
Then the harpy followed me (she would follow me all the way to my car, she said). She attempted to taunt us (laughable) and hollered that we were in terrible trouble -- which, in fact, we were; my girlfriend has breathing problems and was now having difficulty getting enough air.
When the harpy realized how I'd accessed the building, she took verbal offense that I had not paid $18 for self-parking. At that point I turned to her in an attempt at reconciliation; there were no grounds for arresting us, and my girlfriend was having a panic attack.
Which is the moment the harpy called the police. Irony: I was in a building full of people convinced the president was an illegitimate foreign agent bent on removing their constitutional rights.
We lost her and made a clean extraction, but there's no video of all this -- my girlfriend was so scared she thought she would drop the camera.
I will understand if Huffington Post is forced to disavow me. That's fine; I'll take whatever bad-boy punishment Arianna determines -- and make no whimper of complaint under the lash. (Though it would be great to get some consideration from George Soros, who has yet to send me that check we're all supposedly earning in the liberal 'sphere.) The fact is, I haven't made any money by being on HuffPo and that's not what I blog there for.
The woman called herself an employee of Gaylord's, but I have yet to confirm that and have reason to doubt it. More as this develops...
ADDING: She actually yelled a verbal no-trespass order for the entire convention center and the Opry Mills mall at my back. Boo f***ing wa wa hoo, I can't drive two hours to pay a retail markup.
ALSO ADDING: Did you know that shutting a door is "assault?" I didn't, until the harpy shouted this fact too. Interesting how adaptable definitions become whenever wingnuts get involved.

SNL: Rahm Emauel's Apology to Sarah Palin For Using The "R" Word

Frankly, I'm not a huge SNL fan these days. 
I find most of the humor just not... funny.
But this is too good not to share.

If only the REAL Rahm Emanuel were more like Andy Samberg's caricature.
Health care reform would be a fait accompli.

She Who Would Be President... And A Quick Poll.

This is not going to be a diatribe against Sarah Palin.  

Not much needs to be said.

I simply want to point out:

This is the woman who is the spokesperson for the Tea Party movement.

This is the woman who, in this speech, snarkily referred to the POTUS "a guy with a teleprompter."

This is the woman who needs to scribble on her palm to remember "energy," "budget tax cuts" and lifting American spirits" --- "talking points" she's been hammering on for... oh.... more than a year now?

This is the woman who would be leader of the free world.

Holy cow.

Anyway:  Here's the poll question:

Henceforth, should this be referred to as

A) Sarah's Telepalmer™ ,

B) Sarah's PalmPilot™,

C) Sarah's HandyPrompter™

Answers will be tallied and shared later.