How can we build the Democratic Party in all of Nebraska's 93 counties and elect our mainstream, common-sense candidates?
How can we build a strong network of county parties? What role should Meetups play? Any other ideas or suggestions?
Over at Daily Kos, Tim Tagaris takes a look at the web presence (or lack thereof) of county-level Democratic Parties. Tim has given us great feedback on our work to develop the nebraskademocrats.org web strategy, and it's interesting to get his take on county parties and the web.
In order to help county parties have a presence on the internet, the NDP has set up a special section of nebraskademocrats.org to focus on each of Nebraska's 93 counties. To find information on your county, visit our county page and select your county, or just go to www.nebraskademocrats.org/your county (for instance, Nance County Democrats can find information about their county at www.nebraskademocrats.org/nance).
If you have an information about your local Democratic Party that you'd like us to post on your county's section of nebraskademocrats.org, email me.
World according to Bush
With due respect to Neal Obermeyer's Ten Commandments (LJS, June 30), me thinks he doth protest too little. In an effort to reconcile two recent topics in the news, the proper display of the Ten Commandments and the veracity of George W. Bush, the following commandments are submitted as a compromise which can be displayed virtually anywhere and which also speak the truth about George W. Bush.
The Ten Commandments (according to George W. Bush):
Thou shalt have no other gods before me -- Karl Rove and Dick Cheney above me, pulling the strings, is OK.
Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image that is on the earth (for as long as my environmental deregulations allow it to exist); thou shalt not serve any other, for I am thy President, and I am an arrogant President, visiting my iniquity upon you and your children, and the iniquity of my deficit spending upon your third and fourth generations; but bestowing tax breaks upon those who worship me and keep my commandments.
Thou shalt not take the name of thy President in vain, for thy President shall sign into law the Patriot Act to monitor thy speech and thy reading.
Remember the Tuesday after the first Monday in November in the fourth year and keep it holy; for six days prior thou shalt labor in sound-bites proclaiming to those whose attention span is the breadth of a gnat's eye; but the seventh day thou shalt not work, but rejoice in the ignorance of those whom have been deceived within thy precincts; for within those six days the President hath proven that you can fool enough of the people all of the time. And for the next four years the President shall bless those who are humble to him.
Honor thy President and his vice president and all thy President's political appointees so that their days in office and at the public trough shall be long.
Thou shalt not kill unless commanded to do so by the President, whose begotten children and those begotten of his servants are to be kept out of harm's way.
Thou shalt not commit adultery, or partake of strong drink (pick one).
Thou shalt not steal except from those belonging to a lower economic status than thyself.
Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor unless profits from thy neighbor's oil are to be kept in thy storehouse.
Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's house, unless the Supreme Court proclaims there is financial gain for the one who doth covet it; thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's wife, nor his manservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, unless thy ass is in a political bind, in which case anything goes.
Larry McClung, Lincoln
From the Omaha City Weekly.
Throughout history politicians have not always been consistent with their policies, or their rhetoric, or their morals. You get the point. But one thing about politicians is they have always been consistently quotable. The infamous Senator Joseph McCarthy once said it's always dangerous for a politician "to say things people might remember."
Executive Director for the Nebraska Democratic Party Barry Rubin knows this to be true, and his own dexterity at turning a phrase has gotten him in a bit of trouble lately, most recently for controversial comments made about Douglas County Election Commissioner Carlos Castillo, Jr. (more on that in a bit).
But according to Rubin, he was brought here to rejuvenate a fledgling Nebraska Democratic Party that has fallen in prominence since its ‘90s heyday under Jim Exxon and Bob Kerrey. And rehabilitation doesn't include being nice.
Well, not all the time. Rubin said one of the reasons he moved here from D.C.'s Beltway was because of the Heartland's signature friendliness. East Coast colleagues were surprised he would throw himself into the reddest part of the Republican fire, but Nebraska bled blue once, and Rubin feels like it could again, especially with the large numbers of voters registering as Independent. "I think we've (Democrats) just been dysfunctional for a long time," he said.
Now 33, Rubin said he's a converted Republican and didn't take an active interest politics until graduating from the University of Delaware. Disheartened by the new breed of Newt Gingrich, backlash-style Republicans, he worked on the election campaign of Maryland Governor Parris N. Glendening, the only Democratic gubernatorial candidate to win office in 1994.
After serving the Maryland governor's office for several years, Rubin moved to Nebraska in 2003 and currently lives in Omaha with his wife, Erica, and two sons, Ethan and Jack. He sat down with the City Weekly recently to talk about the Democrats' strategy of reemergence.
Check out the full article here.
Check out Heath's post and the comments people from around the blogosphere are making.
"Karl Rove, principal political adviser to President Bush, will visit Omaha on Friday to talk about Social Security with Ameritrade employees and to attend a fundraising dinner…Both events will be private."
Our friend at New Nebraska Network has more:
"Fresh from his continued assault on the first amendment , White House svengali Karl Rove looks to be making a stop in Omaha this weekend. The World-Herald reports on why the smell of brimstone and sulfur is suddenly in the air."
More to follow…
From the Lincoln Journal Star
Don McGinley, a Nebraska political leader whose engaging wit earned him friends across the state, died early Wednesday morning in Lincoln from congestive heart failure.
McGinley, 85, served as Nebraska's lieutenant governor during the term of Gov. Bob Kerrey.
"He was a smart, solid man with a wicked sense of humor who loved the west," said Kerrey.
A native of the Ogallala area, he was also Arthur County Attorney, a Congressman and a state senator."
Happy 4th of July.
Here's an open thread, if anyone is on nebraskademocrats.org instead of spending time over the grill or watching fireworks.
Read this and remember why you get a long weekend in the first place.
And an appropriate quote for today:
"We are the great grassroots campaign of the modern era, built from mouse pads, shoe leather, and hope. We seek to build a community of millions and strengthen the voice of the people.
And like the founders of the Republic, we seek change."
Governor Howard Dean, June 23, 2003
That's what it's all about.
President Bush may not know how to wage war in Iraq (according to Chuck Hagel), but he has joined other Republicans in a devastating attack on the health care of American veterans.
The Bush-run federal Department of Veterans Affairs has admitted to Congress it has come up $1 billion short in meeting the health care needs of America's former soldiers.
As Washington Senator Patty Murray noted: "This shortfall results from either deliberate misdirection or gross incompetence by this administration and the Department of Veteran Affairs."
Democratic Senators are urging the Bush administration for an emergency spending bill to address the $1 billion deficit. But Hill Republicans and the White House seem content to just let this threat to America's veterans get even worse.
As the Toledo Blade notes in an editorial entitled "Bush's War on Vets": "President Bush gives plenty of lip service to men and women in uniform. Now it's time for the President to put his money where his mouth is and fully fund veterans' benefits… For several years now, the Bush bean counters have been slashing funds for veterans' medical care. Playing cheap with those who have put their lives on the line would be a concern any time. Coming as the shortfall does as soldiers return home daily from war in Afghanistan and Iraq with horrific injuries, it's a scandal."
The Toledo Blade also pointed out: "The result has been a longer wait for medical care and the closing of some VA clinics. Veterans groups are understandably hot, with most of their ire directed at Republicans, who control Congress and have made a priority of cutting so-called ‘domestic spending' at the behest of Mr. Bush. One thrust of the Bush policies has been to direct benefits mostly toward those with certain medical problems that are directly attributable to military service. Steve Robertson, legislative director of the American Legion, says the spending cuts ‘are inconsistent with a nation at war.' He's especially critical of dividing veterans into ‘little groups, the ones that ‘deserve' and the ones who ‘don't deserve.''"