The politics of firemen

One of the main debates going on in the City/County Building, and around Omaha, is how many firemen should be on each truck.

Currently, the city contract with the fire union says four. Some have suggested that only three are needed and that having three instead of four would save a huge amount of money in a city strapped for cash.

One group, the Omaha Alliance led by Mike Simmonds and Dave Nabity, has a TV ad out calling fire union’s position of four men on a truck an, “extreme staffing demand”.

Well, the Omaha Professional Firefighters Association has fired back with the following powerful, and professionally produced TV ad.

Take a look:

(For those of you too lazy to watch the 30 second ad, ) it features firefighter Josh Goessling, son of deceased firefighter, Capt. John Goessling. John Goessling died fighting a fire in 1996.

Here’s where things get a bit murky, and pure politics has come into play.

Josh Goessling, sporting red suspenders and a scarred forehead, says in the ad:

“There have been fifty-five firefighters in Omaha who have lost their lives in the line of duty.

Our father was one of them.

We understand the risk it takes to go into a burning building, and we accept that.

We also understand what it takes to fight a fire.

There are a lot of armchair quarterbacks who THINK they know how many firefighters belong on a truck.

But if it means saving your family faster, who would you trust for the right answer?”


Let’s be clear about this:

John Goessling did not die because there weren’t enough men fighting the fire at the Family Dollar Store back in 1996. And that’s not our determination. Or Dave Nabity’s.

The Fire Department’s Safety Analysis Committee came to the conclusion that Goessling died because of shortcomings in the Fire Department’s command and communications systems, “which kept firefighters from coordinating their efforts and learning what firefighters were seeing,” (according to an OWH story on this, posted by KFAB’s Tom Becka here).

And Goessling was on a four man truck.

And this was a four alarm fire and at least three engine crews were on the scene when a roof collapsed on Goessling.

So in case there was any mistake or possible misdirection provided by this political ad, Goessling’s death was not because there were only three men on his truck.

And that’s where this ad has some shortcomings.

There are many good arguments to be made for having four men on a truck. Unfortunately, none were made here, other than “we’re firemen and we know best.” Well, maybe. But people are also going to assume that firemen are looking out for their jobs.

So when a fireman gets on screen and points out that firemen die in the line of duty, and then swoop into an argument about staffing, there should be some relationship between the death referenced and the point they’re trying to make. Instead, it’s misdirection, and emotion, and the argument being made just got less persuasive.

And frankly, in these tense budget times, people are tired of hearing the emotional argument that is tinged with inaccuracy.

It’s a short term gain — up until people hear the whole story.


Congressman Lee Terry and his officially unofficial (but really, official) Democrat challenger state Senator Tom White continue to chip-chip-chip away at each other. Basically it’s White saying Terry’s health care plan is no good, and Terry telling White to put up or shut up.

So, aside from all that, here’s a question for you:

At what point do people already get tired of this race?

And by “people”, we’re not really talking about YOU, because YOU obviously get a kick out of year-round politics — otherwise you probably wouldn’t be reading this in the first place.

No, we’re talking about your neighbor, the Husker fan, who decides who to vote for during the drive to the polls. At what point does that person say, “a pox on both of them”, and then vote for Mort Sullivan again.

Can a candidate win by just staying positive until, say, January? (Even telling people he’s going to do that?)

Maybe that’s too risky in this day and age. Just wondering.


Cracked up at this headline in the OWH today:

Suttle would back tax hike


Other headlines on the same par:

“Osborne makes measured response”
“Nelson could vote either way”
“Dogs: like to bark at stuff”


Ya gotta love the Web 2.0.

Congressman Jeff Fortenberry is following 1,081 people on Twitter.

Senator Mike Johanns has a Flickr page up, featuring shots such as this:

And on Facebook, Ben Nelson just got a semi-automatic shotgun in Mafia Wars! (We kid, we kid…)

Update 8:30am
Jim Esch staying involved…
(you’re welcome Jim…)


  1. Anonymous says:

    I was watching KETV's Kaleidoscope program last Sunday which featured Mayor
    Suttle as a special guest. In talking about the Qwest Center debt and the downtown ballpark financing, the
    Mayor stated that if there's a revenue shortfall in the future that the
    taxpayers of Omaha are not "on the hook" but CWS, Inc. is responsible for
    covering any ballpark shortfall. Mayor Suttle was lying in
    that answer since CWS, Inc. isn't issuing the bonds to finance the stadium
    and the city of Omaha is. That leads me to conclude that if push comes to
    shove, as with the Qwest Center, the taxpayers of Omaha are "on the hook"
    for debt repayment if ballpark revenues fall short.

  2. Anonymous says:

    I believe the men and women entrusted with public safety shoud be taken care of.

    But between the police spiking and 4 to a truck demand of the fire union, I think they have betrayed public trust.

    These two issues developed under Mayor Fahey. It's time for some fiscal sanity, and Mr. Suttle would rather tax than cut spending.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Wow – that is one hell of an ad.

    Agree that it may be for short term gain, and evenrtually the Fire Fighters will have to explain why 3 men vs. 4 is a bad idea, but this ad sure does hit hard.

  4. macdaddy says:

    I think the ad is just so-so. People who actually care about the issue will say, "And so why do we need 4 men on a truck?" People who don't care will say, "Wow, these firefighters know what's best for us." But they won't call. They won't write. They won't email. In the end, it's a wash and comes down to the City Council doing what they think they can get away with and the firefighters trying to gauge if they will really piss off the public by threatening to strike. Because, seriously, if 3 vs 4 is a matter of life-and-death, it's worth putting your livelihood on the line. Otherwise, you're just drawing a paycheck.

  5. macdaddy says:

    Fortenberry following over 1000 people on twitter? This is how he's spending taxpayer money? Looking at his phone every 10 seconds because Constituent X's dog just took a crap on the mean neighbor's lawn? There oughtta be a law. The next Contract with America should contain the promise that Congress will not waste time with Twitter.

  6. macdaddy says:

    "The Chair recognizes Congressman Fortenberry. You have 5 minutes."

    "Thank you, Madame Speaker. In this time of great distress for this country, no issue is more important than…Oh, wow. Lilac Johanssen is at Target. She's going to buy a new iron. More important than…Mike Sidowsky says that his chainsaw is now working and he's going to go trim some trees. Wicked Awesome. Than…Pellini let Castille go! I gotta run. I yield back to the Chair!"

  7. 3rd floor watcher says:

    You are Freaking Kidding me…Esch TV!!!! That site is priceless Sweeper. Remember that music video of David Lee Roth..Just a Gigalo.."live on Dave TV..All Dave, all night" The power of one's own ego is truly amazing.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Ditto times 10! The only job he left out was Development Director at Creighton Prep.

    He was a real estate broker for about 10 minutes and as best as anyone that knows him or works in the field, he was an attorney for even less time.

    Someone should let NASA know that they have a valuable recruit here in Omaha. Based on his resume, I am sure Jim Esch thinks he is abundantly qualified to be a rocket scientist too.

    BTW, his parents should seriously consider cutting the cord on this one, they have coddled him way too long.

    hugs and kisses,
    Dr Laura

  9. Anonymous says:

    Good post sweeper. You should be teaching media law. Maybe you are. The firemen ad is misleading, but as are, regrettably, many of the political ads that air. This debate is getting to be about ego
    and not about the city of Omaha. We are in a world of hurt and the appearance is that firemen are looking out for their best interests. Power isn't taken. Power is given. Someone gave them that power long ago during say…a Fahey administration. Now the chickens have come home to roost.

  10. Anonymous says:

    Ditto again. Why have we villified the police and fire for taking what was handed to them?

    As far as striking, not permitted in Nebraska-a little thing called the law prohibits police, fire and teachers from striking. That is why they get the benefits of an old contract until a new one can be agreed upon.

    BTW, I am tired of campaigns period. The Mayor's Race, the Fire Union Contract Race, the Police Union Contract Race, the Omaha Aliance, the Nebraska Alliance, Change America, Change Nebraska, whatever the hell Miss Jane's campaign is called, the 912ers, the Budget Debate Campaign. I actually wish that candidates could not advertise unless they are within, say, 3 to 6 months of their election.

  11. Anonymous says:

    So, the DNC gave marching orders to all their minions in the States to organize proreform rallies between now and the post Labor Day return to Congress, this according to an article on Drudge.

    Now AARP is holding a proreform rally at the State Capitol tonight instead of picketing the Lee Terry Townhall. They have no federally elected official on the agenda, but did manage to get a visitor from the Whitehouse that just happens to have family that lives in Hastings.

    HMMMM, isn't that where the Klebs live? HMMMM, what is the name of the group that Mrs. Kleb gets paid buckets of money to run here in Red State Nebraska?

    I wonder who is wagging this dogs tail?

  12. Anonymous says:

    Sorry but the Kleebs don't have the clout or respect to get White House representatives to appear for anything. You can thank the Organizing for America group, part of the DNC, that's in the state now. The Kleebs don't even attend or do things with Dems in their county because they're too cool for them.

  13. Anonymous says:

    What group is she the ED for then? I thought it was Organize Nebraska and the Hastings connection is a little too convenient. No one knew anything about this rally until yesterday.

    As for their connections in hastings, I think it is you that is not connected. I get info on them all the time from Dem friends out there.

  14. macdaddy says:

    OK, I bit and clicked on You guys know it would be very hard for me to pass up a Jim Esch joke, but this is more effort from Esch (or his web dweeb) than we've ever seen. Maybe he's found his niche. Maybe he wants to take the slacker's route to fame and fortune and parlay that into fame and fortune. I think if he keeps this up then within the next 10-20 years he could be a respected presence in Omaha and should have a serious shot at recapturing the Dem nomination for NE2. He is on both Facebook AND MySpace. Who has time for that? Only special people with killa organizational skillz. I mean, if Al Gore can win a Nobel Peace Prize for nothing of consequence and with little effort, surely Esch can get a Congressional seat for some viral videos. Excuse me, vyral videos.

    Somebody let me know when he's going to jump a shark.

  15. From the Bleachers says:

    I find it interesting that the Fire Union is suing the City of Omaha for not staffing 4 men to a truck. I also find it interesting that Fire is already over budget this year by some $4 to $5 million due mostly to call-back.

    There are two common themes/relationships to the above:

    1) Both of the issues can/couuld/should be handled with good management.

    2) Both of these issues have been mis-handled by the same person.

    That's right Mike McDonnell, our esteamed Chief of Fire.

    Seriously, these guys have HUGE ones!

  16. Anonymous says:

    I don't know Sweeper, but with that picture of Johanns maybe he could be the 4th man on a fire rig near his downtown condo and save the city some money.

  17. Anonymous says:

    Why are we still talking about cutting our firetruck staffs down from four to three? I don't think we as taxpayers should have to pay for a SOCIALIST fire department! I am smart enough to not let fires break out in MY home, why can't everyone else?? This is really about personal responsibility, and I am TIRED of having to PAY to put out fires in other people's homes when THEY don't know how to properly prevent a fire from starting in the FIRST PLACE.

  18. Anonymous says:

    Amen to 11:26AM. I long for a clever burger ad where there really is more meat. These ads are pitiful. They play on people's fears and paranoia. That was never the purpose of advertising. Someone needs to sit the firefighters down in a closed session to inform them that if this city goes bankrupt given its current conditions then their pension is toast whether it is attended to with three or four men on a truck.

    I agree too many campaigns are turning the majority of citizens off to any message. It is overkill.

  19. Anonymous says:

    Have you ever joined Mikey Nohanns on any of his multitude of tours where he wears those hats? It's funny. He walks around. Ask workers "how are you", nods at appropriate times, and takes a lot of pictures. But the look on his face is that of "the light is on but nobody is home". He loves to pose for photos ops. Typical pol.

  20. Anonymous says:





  21. Anonymous says:

    Actually the official from the WH is a native Nebraskan, Wesleyan grad. So it's not that odd that he'd be in the state.

  22. Anonymous says:

    Why is the Douglas County Board spending our tax dollars for;

    Terry Moore's SeptemberFest festival,

    Multiple Douglas Co Treasurer offices,

    Latino Midlands of the Heartland (approved at todays meeting),

    to be in the business of producing organic farms (approved at todays meeting)

    Hello? is anyone watching our money at the County level? Commissioners? Kathy Kelley?

  23. Anonymous says:

    RT @MacDaddy

    Oh, sorry, I thought I was on Tweeter.

    Johannz in a hard hat? He forgot how a real man works when he left the farm. The guy is not to be emulated by real men.

  24. Anonymous says:

    Not to defend without knowing the full details, but I'm pretty sure people would be pretty upset if there were not multiple Douglas County Treasurer offices.

    Ever had to wait in line to pay your car taxes and licenses?

  25. Anonymous says:

    Anonymous 8:36 AM –

    The way I understand the agreement, the revenue generated by the stadium goes to the city to pay off the bonds first, and then the CWS.

    The reason the taxpayers were "on the hook" for the Qwest Center is that the plan was based on a certain tax levy that was then slashed a few months after the vote. Then you had a recession followed by years of slow or stagnant economic growth.

    But the biggest difference between the Qwest Center and the stadium is this: the revenue from the facility is actually going to help pay off the debt, instead of directly into MECA's pockets.

  26. justthefacts says:

    Nothing to do with the firefighter debate, but there isn't a post about Lee Terry's Town Hall meeting tonight. I was at the meeting from beginning to end and I would say during the almost two hours of comments to/questions for Mr Terry, there were maybe a half dozen that were pro-gov't health care. What I didn't find really surprising was slant of the "news" reports I saw on Ch's 3 & 7 at 10pm. If you didn't attend the meeting and wondered what the mood of the city was, you would think that the populace was split pretty evenly on our support of gov't run health care.

  27. Anonymous says:

    And, to make a point, I was there and the guy that told Lee Terry to stay out of his life prefaced his comment with being glad that he represented him in Congress and that he was glad for his being on the right (assume correct) side of this issue.

    The woman that spoke of integrity in this Country? She prefaced by stating her ongoing support for Lee Terry and was looking for more integrity and personal responsibility from the people of this Country, as well as, the elected officials in Washington that seem to be trying to destroy it.

    The real nice lady in yellow was the woman that challenged the Congressman in his support for the sanctity of life, but refuses to vote for socialized medicine. When an audience member told her to stay out of his wallet, she told him to stay out of her uterus. I wonder if the 2 are married or if she was just a bit of a nut?

    The, at least 90% majority wanted far less government than is being offered to them now. One guy actually wanted Congress to work on job creation so there would be less uninsured and more people that can afford insurance and more employers that will offer it.

    Go figure, it really is the economy, stupid!

  28. Anonymous says:

    Before the next session, I hope at least one Omaha state senator will make closing down the Court of Industrial Relations their priority bill. The public employee unions have made that their "go to" place for anything/everything they can't get in negotiations.

  29. Anonymous says:

    Anon 9:03
    The Latino money, was that the $20,000 to celebrate Mexico's independence day parade? Can ANYONE tell me why THAT would be a taxpayer expense? Where is the State Auditor when we need him?

  30. Brian T. Osborn says:

    I agree Anon 2:57,

    Yeah! Let's cut out ALL of the SOCIALIST crap that has infiltrated our government. Let's privatize the police and fire departments. If you want protection then buy insurance for it.

    If you want to drive on the streets and highways, then pay a toll. If you want the streets lighted in your neighborhood, then get together with your neighbors and buy a generator. UPS and FedEx can handle our mail. If your kids need educating, then hire a tutor, no sense paying to educate your neighbor's brats.

    Xe Services LLC (ex-Blackwater) would gladly defend our nation for us AND keep our streets clear of hooligans and terrorists … for a fee. And, so long as we are all armed to the teeth, what with our 2nd Amendment Rights and all, we can just shoot anybody we don't trust. So long as OUR militia is better armed than THEIR militia, what have we got to worry about?

    Get rid of public television and radio – Rush can afford to get his message out to us over the private stations, unless the lack of government control allows the frequency spectrum to clog them up.

    Yeah, the world was a MUCH better place when Anti-Socialists ruled the day! Every man stood for himself, provided for his own family, and if he got sick he died … just the way God intended!

  31. Joe H says:

    To MacDaddy, Your ignorance is laughable much like your politics.Check your facts, Firemen, unlike other unions, cant strike. It is illegal for them to do so.

  32. aligner says:

    It seemed Jerram's dog & pony show yesterday was so that he could charge more billable hours to the fire union. He's got to earn some of that $10,000 retainer they paid him in campaign contributions. It was comical.

    Also, as I've been reading past minutes from council meetings, I hope that you folks in the 3rd district are being represented well. Jerram abstained from nearly every liquor license vote because his partner in law, Mike Kelley is always the attorney representing the applicant. And then yesterday, he said the majority of you in the 3rd district wanted to keep the minimum staffing requirement. I hope that's true.

  33. Anonymous says:

    Liquor matters are important to mid-town. Jerram Should not be on the council if he cannot stand up for the community. Don't partners profit on these license matters?

  34. Right Wing Professor says:


    You are clearly completely ignorant of libertarian political theory. I recommend Nozick's 'Anarchy State and Utopia', though you might find it tough sledding. You might also try reading any brief account of the thought of John Locke.

    I would have thought they covered this in civics class, but with gummint schools, who knows?

    RWP, ever the educator 🙂

  35. Brian T. Osborn says:


    It may be that I haven't studied libertarian politics, but thankfully I paid attention in most of the other classes. In fact, during one of my Civics classes I had to take the instructor to school.

    We were required to subscribe to, read, and be able to discuss the contents of Time magazine each week on Fridays as a current events lesson. One week the cover story raised the question, "Should women be drafted?" I of course stated that, yes, indeed they should.

    The teacher told me to sit down and shut up as I didn't know what I was talking about. He didn't get another word in for the remainder of the class, about forty five minutes. I think he learned something that day.

    It was the fall of '69, the Vietnam war was raging, women were burning their bras (we boys liked that) and demanding equality, the Israelis had handily defeated the Arabs in the six-day-war the year before. I argued that if women wanted to be equal to men then they needed to face the same responsibilities to have the same rights. We boys were being drafted at the time, so it was a pertinent demand. I also pointed out that the Israeli army had females fighting side by side with their men. History has proven I was right.

    After demanding I yield the floor, our teacher faced what was probably the first time he'd ever encountered a student like me. I refused, then lectured him for the remainder of the class about what teaching Civics should be all about. I wasn't about to allow my 1st Amendment rights be so easily denied. Fortunately I had paid attention in my History classes and was able to offer point after point to buttress my argument.

    The teacher apologized to me, before the class, the following day. We still get along with each other, ever since we came to that understanding.

  36. Anonymous says:

    Whether you agreed or disagreed with his views, let us acknowledge the service and significance of Ted Kennedy to out country and the Senate. Pray for his soul and his family. Thank you

  37. Anonymous says:

    OMG, BTO, you have reached a level of arrogance that I only thought Jim Esch had attained.

    BTW, belittling your elders and getting them to apologize only makes you a bully.

    Since you have given us insight into your age, or you are just a writer of fiction, I now see that you are still a bully in your old age in the way that you deal with those beneath you.

    You know, Cliff the mail carrier always seemed to know a lot, he was also usually quite an ass about it until he got drunk. Perhaps you should go get drunk and a little nicer.

  38. Brian T. Osborn says:

    Anon 5:58,

    If standing up for what is right is a sign of arrogance, then I am quite happy to be one arrogant S.O.B.

  39. Uncle Wiggily says:

    Uhhh … actually … the Arab-Israeli Six Day War was in the early summer of 1967, which would make it more than two years before your epochal crushing of your Civics teacher (not "the year before").

    It prolly doesn't matter that much … I just like things to be neat.

    Carry on ….

  40. Brian T. Osborn says:

    Bye the way Anon 5:58,

    Did I say I MADE my teacher apologize? No, you did.

    Just for the record, since I am not ashamed to use my own name here, it isn't that hard for you to find out all you want to know about me. I'm 57, graduated Holdrege High School in 1968, served six year in the U.S. Navy, lived in Europe for a dozen years, graduated UNK in 2000 as a non-traditional student. I'm a self employed graphic designer.

    Come on down to Holdrege and we'll go to CHEEX Bar and get drunk on beer together. I think you'll discover that I am really a pretty nice guy. Even my Republican friends think I'm a pretty nice guy.

  41. John Locke says:

    While I don't know much about libertarian political theory, I can say that the new season of LOST debuts in January.

    Sorry, couldn't resist.

  42. Brian T. Osborn says:

    Uncle W.,

    I was wrong, it was the fall of '68 since I graduated high school in the spring of '69. Man, am I having trouble typing numbers today! Did I mention that I'm also a little dyslexic?

    To be PRECISE the six day war occured in the late spring of 1967 (June 5-10), but thanks for keeping your stick on the ice.

    By the way, what does all this have to do with firemen anyway?

  43. Anonymous says:

    Nothing, but, as always, it is all about you BTO.

    BTW, the fireman issue is over-until Suttle goes against the Council and puts it in their contract.

  44. Anonymous says:

    Yikes. My socks are on the floor given some of the exchanges today. Let's start over tomorrow and not do anything vile in each other's Wheaties.

  45. Sam says:

    For all of you 'postitnuts" (born post 1970)…BTO is the only one with any substance on this blog. Open yourselves up to history and common sense. Learn people, LEARN!

  46. One Out In The Third says:


    "It prolly doesn't matter that much … I just like things to be neat."

    Do you shake the debris out of your keyboard daily?

  47. Anonymous says:

    Come on folks, be realistic.

    The fire union would never, ever approve a contract that eliminated the minimum staffing requirement. Not when they have a current contract that guarantees it. Not when they have had court decisions in their favor mandating the requirement. Anyone who thinks 4 men on a truck is a negotiable item for the fire union obviously has no knowledge of the issue, or how collective bargaining actually works.

    Plus, I'm fairly certain that a majority of the council said they're in favor of keeping it in the contract.

    This was political grandstanding. No more, no less. And shame on the people who would rather send a firefighter into a burning house alone than pay a few dollars more per year in taxes.

  48. macdaddy says:

    Joe H: Really? They can't strike? Well, then they can work for minimum wage. Problem solved. And if they do strike, who's going to fire them? Suttle? What's anybody going to do about it? Hire scab firefighters? Call in the National Guard? Go to their houses, drag them out of bed, slap some boots and a helmet on them and throw them at a burning house? Throw them in jail?

    Maybe they won't call it a strike. Maybe it'll be a sick-out. In any event, if they feel that 3 men on a truck is a true threat to their lives, they should be prepared to get dirty. If not, then they're the ones doing the grandstanding.

  49. Anonymous says:

    macdaddy, you really don't understand the law, do you?

    If Suttle or the City of Omaha does not honor the union's contract, the union will sue. And they will most likely win. The city can't unilaterally just decide to say "screw the firefighters." They'd get taken to court. And they would lose.

  50. Uncle Wiggily says:


    My keyboard stays purty tidy …

    My screen, on the other hand, gets all brown and smelly whenever I hit one a them lieberal web sites … like over there at that Neener-Neener Network. I keep a jug of disinfectant handy.

  51. Anonymous says:

    Would everyone PLEASE quit calling them "statues"! They are statutes at the State level and Ordinances or Amendments to the Charter at the local level. If you keep calling them "statues", I will be forced to assume you are Mayor Ray Nagin of "New Orlins".

  52. macdaddy says:

    Nate E, here's the reality: Omaha, your city, is going down the tubes and your people are working to make sure it happens. They aren't doing it on purpose, of course, they're just short-sighted and ignorant.

  53. Take the Pledge says:

    Is is possible that we could have one (1) week where there are no insults, personal or otherwise, about postings?

    Differences of opinions are fine, but the discussion often goes over the line.

    Anyone interested in taking this pledge?

  54. Anonymous says:

    Not interested. I think Sweeper takes care of the over the top and inappropriate comments fairly efficiently.

    It is his Blog(or hers?) and Sweeper gets to be in charge, not you.

    Besides, Pledges outside of promising allegiance to our amazing Country are counter productive.

    BTW, did anyone else chuckle when they saw the OWH steal another tidbit of "news" (and that is a stretch considering the subject matter)?LOL

  55. Six (now Eight) Dollar Parker says:

    Mike Johanns in his hard hat makes me want to ask Michael Dukakis if his tank is still available.

  56. Anonymous says:

    In regard to Jim Esch's new project, I actually think this has some merit. It looks like a good way to spread the word about worthy fundraising causes–nothing wrong w/that. I know Jim wasn't originally going to run in 2008 but changed his mind at the Democratic Caucus. Maybe he'll do the same this time–seems to me he has as good of a claim on the 2010 Dem. nomination as anyone else.

  57. Anonymous says:

    Esch has more name recognition than White and lost by not very much. One of these days the Dems will learn to start early instead of waiting around like scared rabbits. I agree with Terry in last Sunday's paper when he as much said, "Put up or shut up" only nicer. If you are going to challenge the incumbent, do it.
    This mamby pamby, golly gee, I'm exploring is gutless

  58. Anonymous says:

    I have it on very good authority that Nancy Thompson is also looking at the race. There are alot of D's who feel it is wide open on their side–why be bulldozed by Ian, Samp and Covalt? Could be interesting on the D side…

  59. Anonymous says:

    The Research 2000 poll of Nebr. has some interesting findings:

    Heineman's fav/unfav 63-23

    Obama's fav/unfav 36-61

    Public Option favor/oppose 38-49

    When will the D's have a candidate for Governor?

  60. Cathy says:


    I'm not sure I agree w/ much or all, or anything you say… but, I will say that I love your era… spring/summer of 1969 was the best time of my life !!! And, we did think the Viet Nam days were hard, and, YES ! Most uncalled for !!!

    Not sure why, but that's what I got out of one of your posts !

  61. Anonymous says:

    7:07 –

    Seriously, I love how you folks flout your ignorance about the internal politics of the Democratic Party. How on earth can anyone think that Samp and Russell would be working together?

  62. Cathy says:

    SO… what are we now headed for? Ohhh… I know, we're going to have another Revolution… aren't we ?

    And now, is that going to be our ONLY resolution to what we're now facing (each way we look) ? We are loosing our choices by the day and year, aren't we ??? Locally, and nationally … WOW !!!
    Hold on Folks, the ride ONLY began !

  63. Cathy says:

    Nobody on here tonight but me… but, I guess I could write my own Blues Music.. I've got the Lyrics, but, can't play a guitar…

  64. Anonymous says:

    Because Samp and Russell are both party hacks and will do what they are told to keep their bosses looking shiny and bright, duh!

  65. Anonymous says:

    FYI – Matt Sakalosky will be on KFAB this morning at 10 AM to talk about his campaign and upcoming townhall meeting.

  66. Anonymous says:

    Don't know about a float, but he did say that he went to Creighton University for free, but nothing about whether he graduated, or not.

    I wish I hadn't had to take out all those student loans to go to college. Ten years at $300 bucks a month would have made quite a dent in my mortgage.

    At least I have my degree and I got a great education in the public schools here in town.

  67. Anonymous says:

    'Cause it's fun and he handed us Mayor Futtle through his consulting style. The voters (or non voters as it was) don't care if you blame them, so we will blame someone that deserves blame for something he's done in his life-even if this isn't particularly it.

    But, mostly, 'cause it's fun.

  68. Anonymous says:

    Well I for one would like to say thank you to all of the generous Omahans who donated/are donating over $300,000 to keep the Florence library open and to prevent the layoffs of 50 library workers.

  69. Anonymous says:

    Jim has a history of quitting and of being unreliable. I hope the Independent Party isn't expecting too much out of him.

    I agree. The deep pockets AND shallow pockets that give to our community are amazing.

    New slogan-Omaha, we do it well (and the steaks aren't bad either).

  70. Anonymous says:

    Listened to Matt Sakalosky on KFAB. Pretty unremarkable guy wanting to unseat a fellow Republican incumbent who has won two back-to-back tough races. I sure didn't hear anything that was going to set the world on fire from Matt.

  71. Anonymous says:

    Ha! LOL! Yeah, because we've heard SOOOOOO much from Lee Terry that has set the world on fire. (Yes, that was sarcasm!)

  72. Whistle Blower says:

    Suttle has a consultive style of leading? Yeah…right. He usually only consults one person. The Fire Chief Mike McDonnell.

    Old Boss Man McDonnell has fired a 30 year secretary and replaced her with a $110,000+ per year uniformed fire fighter. He'll even get paid extra for performing these duties.

    So, he says we don't have enough fire fighters on the streets, he replaces a lower salaried secretary with a highly compensated and trained fire fighter. THAT is leadership!

    Makes you wonder what McDonnell has to hide. Replace the civilians who are always getting jobed in labor negotiations with his cronies and there will be zero oversight into the department.

  73. Anonymous says:

    Wonder why Chris Jerram stood out on his own proposing a 1% entertainment tax? One might conclude that its unstated purpose was to preclude an fire budget cuts now that 4 men on a truck is no longer the law. I guess it doesn't really matter since Jerram will be joining Suttle on the "former city official" line just as soon as recall can legally begin. Jerram loses a recall vote much more easily than even Suttle.

  74. Anonymous says:

    If Matt Sak isn't setting the world on fire now with his ideas, then why change an experienced backbencher for a new one? LOL

  75. Anonymous says:

    Hey August 28th 12:03 pm…some idea of fun. Try a movie quick before the entertainment tax goes into effect. Or? Get a life.

  76. Anonymous says:

    It is a sad day in Omaha when the twisted misrepresented facts slung by the rich carry more weight than the professionals who know their jobs. It is entirely sickening that David Nabity and Rick Bettger and their other rich buddies, who probably do not already pay thier fair share of taxes, can twist the facts and the media in Omaha lets them get away with it. Part these peoples continued argument was that the 500 million pension shorfall was from the minimum staffing ordinance. This is not true. There is no way to connect the two. Now if they were to say that 40 million of the pension shortfall was due to the minimum staffing ordinance that would be more correct, but still not the entire truth. How much of that 40 million is from firefighters, remeber there were police officers retiring at this time also. They failed to mention this. How much of the shortfall is attributed to the market slump, they failed to mention this also. These people sensationalized and misrepresented the truth, the media let them, and the average citizen listened. The city council knew these numbers they used were not correct also, but they listened to the citzenry, who are not experts in firefighting. The citizens of Omaha were mislead by failed politicians, whose only goal is to protect theirs and their buddies riches. They do not care about the average citizens of Omaha. David Nabity and his ilk should be ashamed of themselves, I know for shure they make me sick.

  77. Anonymous says:

    A very serious problem is that the media and the city council let David Nabity twist the facts and numbers of the fire dept minimum manning ordinance when he spoke to the council, there is no way that you can tie the 500 million shortfall to the ordinance. The city could have avoided any overtime by hiring to the full complement number at any time, really it didn't even need to hire to full complement, just to the magic number that is stated in the contract and ordinance. The pension task force stated that spiking was only directly associated with 8% of the shortfall, say half for the police and half for the fire. Therefore only 20 million can be associated with the ordinance. That is a far cry from 500, but still a number that needs to fixed. Did you notice that the same Op-Ed piece that rick bettger wrote in the OWH was very similar to nabity's, speech and his previous article, I wonder who plagerized off of who. DO you realize that only the rich people, the omaha alliance against public safety, they are rich people (you have to be rich to this arrogant), have gotten thier way over the regular population of omaha. This is not right. DO you realize that all the phone calls that the city council stated taht they received that week regarding this issue were orchestrated by this group, they called voters and if the voter said they were for four ff's a truck and safety they (oaps) said thank you and good-bye, if you said that you were against safety and only wanted three they would connect the voter to the council's office to express the rich cry babies desired sentament. This group twisted the facts and played on emotions at a difficult time. They aired a misleading commercial that twisted the facts and played to disparaging stereotypes. They have attacked the men and women sworn to protect omaha. they told the public that if this ordinance was repealed then the city budget would be fine. THis is not true, the revenue stream is broken. It needs addressed to how Omaha can have a sustainable revenue stream that is not so dependent on the economy. they blamed the whole budget problem on the fire union and the dept. They have now made the safety of Omaha's ff's and citizens a negotiable item. The council let the rich minority win over the regular majority.

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