About that endorsement…

This morning the Tea Party Express announced their endorsement of Jon Bruning for the 2012 U.S. Senate race. The TPE had been billing the endorsement as a “surprise”, which it sort of was…in a manufactured sort of way.

How so? Well, if they had just said, “we are endorsing someone”, then everyone would have most likely assumed it was Bruning. But by saying it was a surprise, they led us down the the path of, “well if it’s a surprise, it can’t be Bruning”. So by announcing Bruning, it was a surprise, because we figured that couldn’t be a surprise, because it wouldn’t be.

First base. (If you’re playing “Who’s on first”.)

Some have suggested that it’s a surprise because it is so early, or because Bruning is the presumed front runner, and the TPE usually goes with underdogs. Well maybe. But the fact is that the TPE scored a big media hit on this — CNN, Politico, The Hill, and locally the OWH and LJS. (Um, and us, but we always bite.)

Frankly we heard this last evening, but were afraid to jump the gun figuring that when they said “surprise”, it really had to be a “surprise”. Joke’s on us.


So, about the Tea Party Express. In case you didn’t know, or it isn’t clear by the stories on this endorsement, the TPE is not the umbrella group of the “Tea Party” movement in any real sort of way. They aren’t like the national GOP to all the state GOPs. Or they aren’t Major League Baseball to Cardinals and Royals — or even to the minor league teams.

The TPE is an invention of California political consultant Sal Russo, who decided to capitalize on the Tea Party movement. And raise money and make media buys on behalf of them (oh, and take a percentage on all those media buys).

And they got the bus, and have traveled around holding the Tea Party rallies, and all that.

Which is great, and there is nothing really wrong with that. Except…

The Tea Party movement is about grass roots. The President and all the haters who derogatorily call them “Tea Baggers” and all that don’t like to admit it, but it really is a classic grass roots movement. It is people who have gotten upset at the ruling parties, don’t want to be part of them, but want to be involved.

So the various groups have local “chapters”, as it were, but they don’t answer or look up to any national groups. As it should be. They are autonomous, because that is the reason they started. They want to be their own deal.

So the Tea Party Express is more like a mobile TV channel for the Tea Partiers to watch. They provide a service with the party bus, and spend some national money. And good for them. We don’t begrudge them their business plan.

But the local Tea Partiers don’t necessarily follow their lead. And they relatively resent, in this case anyway, the suggestion that the Nebraska Tea Party groups — of which sixteen local Nebraska groups have spoken on this — are endorsing the endorsement, as it were.

That does not mean that they are not supporting or would not support Jon Bruning. But it also does not mean that they are not supporting or would not support Don Stenberg or Pat Flynn or other candidates (more on that below).

Fact of the matter is, quite a few of the various local Nebraska Tea Party groups have met extensively with Bruning and Stenberg and Flynn. And what we hear from them is that they, as groups, like what all of them are saying. And they like all of them over Ben Nelson, by the way.

But they are not going to get into endorsements. As a matter of fact, from what we hear, they aren’t really going to bother much with the statewide races. Why? Because, their influence in big money races is limited. They are grassroots, and do grassroots stuff. Pass out fliers, go door to door, make phone calls.

They have the ability to be very effective at the local level on municipal races and issues and in legislative races. And bully for that! A grassroots movement that is realistic and knows where they can be effective? Outstanding.

Again, that’s not to say individuals aren’t going to support or work for their Senate candidates. Or that door to door, etc. has no place in a statewide race. But as a group, if they are going to pick their battles — they would rather be successful in the small skirmishes that can effect the overall war. Instead of trying to plan Normandy. (That concludes your war analogies.)


So all of this is not meant to take away from Jon Bruning’s endorsement. Just that it comes from a non-Nebraska entity, over which there could be confusion.

And not to be too harsh, but we sort of chuckled at Don Stenberg’s “me-too” Tweets this morning. His camp whipped together a “Tea Party for Stenberg” banner-head and a page on their website. Um… except that it isn’t coming from any Tea Partiers.   Just a list of Tea Party-like issues Don likes, over his signature.  Kind of like putting up a “Whigs for Stenberg” page…without any Whigs. Whatever works for ya.

Anyway, you all can feel free to complain or cheer over the endorsement. But those of you insisting that it is either the death knell or victory lap for Bruning should take a deep breath.


And we mentioned above about “other candidates”.


On Monday, Don Walton of the LJS mentioned once again that there is “increasing chatter” on state Senator Deb Fischer suggested bid for the U.S. Senate.

We will jump in to say that from our many independent sources we are hearing a LOT of chatter about a possible campaign by Senator Fischer. And about the kind of immediate support, both politically and monetarily, that she could/would garner.

Her candidacy would make the GOP primary very, Very, VERY interesting.

Keep an eye here for future details.


And a final note about the OWH article referencing the old news about suggested higher gas prices resulting from the proposed Keystone XL pipeline.

In the article, they quote various people that if TransCanada did something bad, that would be bad.

Uh, yeah. If they started murdering baby kittens, that would be bad. Except that the article doesn’t state any way or reason or how that they would be hurting baby kittens or gas prices or anything else.

And then they go on to quote our favorite self-proclaimed nutrition expert, Jane Kleeb, who says that gas prices rising by a nickel would be bad. Oh really? Is that right? Oh, well, thank you for that expert opinion.

And now that we mention it, how about them rising by a quarter in a couple of weeks, without any pipeline existing? Where are the protest at the capitol about that? Did a little bird mention anything about that little quandry, eh? Yup, more oil coming from Canada sure would be awful.

Feel like we are gobbling down crazy pills by the handful…


Oh, and ICYMI, a story on the endorsement on Mike Johanns’s brief Presidential campaign.


  1. Anonymous says:

    The Tea Party is “a classic grass roots movement”? So does that mean Roger Ailes is a “community organizer”?

  2. Anonymous says:

    The Tea Party is “a classic grass roots movement” funded by Americans for Prosperity aka the Koch Brothers.

  3. Kortezzi says:

    Hey Dennis,

    Why do you keep posting about the campaigns of Tea Party-backed which fell short (Miller, Angle & O’Donnell)?

    Quite obviously, it’s because you don’t like being reminded of the campaigns of Tea Party-backed candidates that won. Here’s a partial list:

    Marco Rubio (FL)
    NIkki Haley (SC)
    Rand Paul (KY)
    Pat Toomey (PA)
    Mike Lee (UT)
    Ron Johnson (WI)
    Allen West (FL)

    Go ahead, keep dismissing the Tea Party movement as if it will have no impact in 2012 either. We like it when the opposition is neck-deep in denial!

  4. Anonymous says:

    Take a close examination at what happened to Tea Party candidate for Lincoln Mayor Tammy Buffington.

    Nuff said. The Tea Party is toast.

  5. Macdaddy says:

    There’s a “Tea Party” candidate in New York that has run 3 times as a Democrat, endorsed Obama, and supported Nancy Pelosi. But he’s the Tea Party candidate. Except not really. That’s the risk of being a truly grass roots organization: no quality control. Posers, con artists, and liberals, er, uh, progressives can freely join up with dollar signs and mischief in their eyes.

  6. Dennis says:

    The Tea Party’s time has come and gone. The Ryan Medicare privatization scheme has alienated many of the senior citizens who voted GOP last year. It should also be noted that the extreme legislative agendas of Tea Party governors in places like Michigan, Wisconsin, Florida and Pennsylvania have turned off moderate and independent voters. Moreover, the overall national approval ratings for the Tea Party movement has recently hit an all time low. Now that the voters have become better acquainted with what the Tea Party stands for, the bloom is off the rose.

  7. RWP says:

    The government’s own Energy Information Agency’s short term energy outlook yesterday predicted gasoline prices staying high through 2012. Meanwhile, US domestic production will be down next year. Why? Quoting: “EIA expects production from the Federal Gulf of Mexico (GOM) to fall by 130,000 bbl/d in 2011 and by a further 190,000 bbl/d in 2012 because of production declines from existing fields and the impact of last year’s drilling moratorium and the subsequent delay in issuing new drilling permits”.

    Increased supplies will not affect gasoline prices tomorrow or next week. But decisions made last year and the year before by the Obama administration are driving up prices now and will affect them even more strongly next year. It is almost inconceivable Obama is stupid enough, at this stage, to further hold up Keystone XL. His own DOE is blaming Ken Salazar for production declines already ‘in the pipeline’.

  8. Nate says:

    Dennis: It turned off the voters in Wisconsin so much that they voted to retain the conservative David Prosser on their Supreme Court in an election that was considered a referendum on Scott Walker’s policies.

  9. Anonymous says:

    Nate, why don’t you look more closely at the Prosser election. His opponent was 30 points down in polling before Walker’s agenda became clear. She was not a strong candidate, but she had him beat until those “missing” ballots were discovered. Go ahead and believe your fantasies.

  10. CCON says:

    Spot on SS, you obviously get it. The liberal politicos keep harping on a couple lost high profile races while ignoring the fact that the The Good Ship Congress has started to Right itself thanks in a large measure to the TEA Party movement. If we keep it local, and we may, we’ll be effective. If we support the big plays once in a while, we’ll win big. Stay tuned because 2012 is shaping up to be the perfect storm where local Tea Party organizers, having received political experience & training since ’08, meet and begin to cooperate with big dollar teams like TPX. I’m optomistic.

  11. Stoney says:

    Don’t Bogart that joint my friends. Pass some of that “tea” around to the rest of us. I don’t care if it is paid for by the Koch Bros., hell I’ve I’ve been smoking the Marx Bros. brand for years and all it has done is make me see weird stuff. I must be OptoMystic too!

  12. Too Bad says:

    As a registered Dem who is sick of Sen. Nelson, I really hope Sen. Fischer runs for Senate. I will not vote for Sen. Nelson. He should retire. I will vote for Sen. Fischer because she is smart and organized and I like her style, even though I disagreed with most of her positions on the issues this session. Plus she’s from the third, which is nice. And she’s a SHE–also good. Nebraska needs some fresh blood in the Senate. Please, Repubs, don’t nominate AG Bruning the professional politician. He is an embarrassment.

  13. David West says:

    I was interviewed by CNN on this announcement, though I do not know if my statements actually made it to the website.

    I laugh at those who think the ‘Tea Party’ is dead. Why don’t you ask your candidates in 2010 that lost if it is dead? Right now, here in the state, we have no election until May. You won’t see the enthusiasm of the second Tea Party until 2012.

    To those who think the Tea Party is run by Americans for Prosperity, it is to laugh. I ran the first tea party in this state and I’m not a member of AFP. AFP wasn’t even a presence at that point. I funded it with my own money. The second tea party was funded by other organizations, and in fact the AFP was not even invited. Wake up and get your facts right before you start spouting your right wing conspiracy theories. AFP is part of the coalition putting on the tea parties in Omaha now, but that coalition is led as much by Doug Kagan’s Nebraska Taxpayers for Freedom, which has been in existence far longer than AFP even was founded.

    My objection to the TPE endorsement was it was too early. I also thought it would be Flynn getting the endorsement, which I admit I was wrong about. My site won’t be making an endorsement beyond a list of candidates that folks should NOT vote for, just like I did last year. As to my own personal endorsements, I will make those on my own blog in due time.

  14. Nate says:

    Anon 2:51: Kloppenburg’s campaign has issued various ballot bag challenges throughout the recount process but has only chipped away Prosser’s initial 7,316-vote lead by around 330 votes.

    The “missing” votes weren’t missing at all; they had been omitted due to a human computer error. A Democrat spokesperson on the Waukesha County Board of Canvassers affirmed as much.

    The only fantasy is the idea that Kloppenburg had legitimately defeated him. The fact that she narrowed his polling lead speaks more to labor unions bringing their influence to bear than anything else.

  15. Oh Mander says:

    Mr. West – You’re correct that the Tea Party movement as a whole is not uniformly funded by Americans for Prosperity, but the Tea Party Express sure is, and it’s consistently promoted by Fox News and other Murdoch-owned media. The Tea Party is not dead, but the influence of the Tea Party Express will continue to fade as long as the same tired GOP establishment is running the show. TPE is simply a group of GOP operatives that borrowed your message and stole your name. And why not? The Tea Party brand is proving to be a real money maker, both before and after elections, regardless of the outcomes.

  16. Another Democrat says:

    I have to agree with @TooBad. I regret that I have held my nose and voted for Senator Nelson in the past, and I will regret having to do so again if his opponent is either Bruning or Stenberg. If Deb Fisher runs for Nelson’s seat many Democrats may switch their registration, as they did in 2006 for the Osborne/Heineman primary, to help her out. I believe Mrs. Fisher would get a healthy share of the Democratic vote in the general election if she were Sen. Nelson’s opponent.

  17. Anonymous says:

    Ok sam Fischer, only one anonymous post per day shilling for Deb Fischer. There are other employment opportunities for you.

  18. Macdaddy says:

    Senator Nelson just added to global warming with his latest email stating the obvious: Pakistan needs to cough up some answers. Why doesn’t the good Senator do something productive like take Harry Reid to the woodshed and demand that his party submit a budget that doesn’t include trillions of dollars in new taxes? Why not make himself useful? So far Senator Nelson’s contributions have been detrimental to the country at large and Nebraska in particular. The Tea Party can be deader than a doornail and that won’t save his bacon in 2012. As it is, if the Tea Party makes up only 25% of Nebraskans, it is 25% that will vote come hell or high water and it won’t be for Nelson. I’d be willing to bet that for every tea party member there’s at least one non-member like myself who will crawl over broken glass to vote against the Benator.

  19. Macdaddy says:

    Maybe Senator Nelson could look into why the Obama administration is trying to force banks into making subprime mortgages again.

  20. Jenn says:

    Wasn’t there just a leak in North Dakota on one of these TransCanada pipelines? I still don’t see why it’s a good idea to run this through the sandhills. We need a little prudence here. Even Johanns just wrote a letter to the State Dept. complaining about this, so I feel good knowing that some conservatives are skeptical about this project. I don’t understand the blind trust of everything some Canadian company says, when they’ve made a lot mistakes in the past, including recently. I don’t see why this is only an issue to upset the lefty-liberal crowd. Seems to me like this is about protecting our state’s interests and our property owners.

  21. RWP says:

    One more time.

    Keystone XL is routed over one very small stretch of the far northeast Sandhills. Other oil pipelines cross longer stretches of Sandhills, and have done so for over 50 years, without environmental damage. If there were a leak, it would be highly localized. If it somehow got into the groundwater, it would be carried northeast, away from the body of the aquifer, by the groundwater flow.

    The pipeline has large benefits, especially since restrictive Obama/Salazar drilling policies are now reducing current US domestic production and pushing up prices. The risks are minimal.

  22. Mr Green Genes says:

    OMG, there is a gas pipeline running into your house! It leaks hydrocarbons into the soil of your lawn! Into the atmosphere! Into baby animals’ brains! And, wait, OMG AGAIN, there is oil in your car! And all sorts of other hydrocarbons that are right now evaporating into the atmosphere and making a bee line for baby animals’ brains! – Oh the unanimalness of it all – And we cannot ask God for help because it is our fault and because God is a myth invented by greedy people who don’t believe in the real cosmic Mother Earth who humanity rapes in its eternal human baddness.

    And that’s why I want you to join me at the Grand Opening of the new Kleeb Center for Green Euthenasia, at the corner of Happy St and GoOffYourself Blvd. Our first one hundred customers will get a coupon good for one free lethal injection of natural herbal extracts followed by interrment in organic compost pits in the Sandhills guarenteed to be oil free and natural.

    Okay, Jenn, Jane, whatever, here’s the deal. Get a bus ticket to Los Angeles and picket the La Brea tar pits; vast tons of exposed oil. Go bitch to Mother Nature for a change. Your voice will be best heard if you stand near the middle.

  23. Carbon Footprint says:

    How many times a week does Jane Kleeb drive from Hastings to Omaha and/or Lincoln. What a hypocrite.

  24. curb says:

    Environmentalism, like any “ism”, attracts its share of passion-seeking fact-ignoring fools. Since these are mostly leftwing, they become wine sipping secular pseudointellectuals instead of beer drinking religious Nascar enthusiasts. But they all swim in the stupid end of the pool.

    If it weren’t so “redneck”, nutritionist Kleeb would be hunting Bigfoot.

  25. Lincolnite says:

    Kyle’s NNN appears to have gone dark. Wonder if he’s laying low because he’s being appointed to a position by Mayor Beutler? Supposedly the hearing on his appointment is next week. Hmmmm.

  26. Anonymous says:

    Jane says “who knew?” when told the Reuben sandwich was invented in Nebraska. Uhmm, native Nebraskans know this, Jane. Please stop trying to enlighten the rest of us with your ever-growing knowledge of all things Nebraska, none of it is a revelation to us.

  27. RWP says:



    Well, it’s a new departure for Beutler. He has a record of appointing old Democrat political hacks to city positions. A younger Democrat poltical hack will be a nice change.

  28. Anonymous says:

    For any of you democrats who think Deb Fischer is better than Ben Nelson. Think again. She is super right wing. She makes Bruning look like a liberal. Hell she makes Michel Bachman look smart and liberal. We know her out in the North Central part of the State. She hates unions, she hates teachers, she loves big oil, she loves corporations. She loves hiring slave labor from Mexico. She fits in fine with the tea baggers. But she is not a reasonable alternative to Ben Nelson.

  29. Lincolnite says:

    It’s true, although doesn’t appear to be a paid position. This from the Lincoln City Council agenda:

    Appointing Dr. Sarah Cada, April Rimpley, Kyle Michaelis and Mark Hunzeker to the Lincoln/Lancaster County EMS Oversight Authority, Inc. for four-year terms to expire on May 16, 2015. (INTRODUCTION SUSPENDED ONE WEEK TO 5/16/11).

    What’s Kyle know about EMS other than being a big supporter of the fire labor union?

  30. RWP says:

    “That the Lincoln/Lancaster County EMS Oversight Authority, Inc. shall continue to: (i) provide medical direction for the provision of emergency medical services in the City of Lincoln and its medical service area; (ii) prepare written standards oftreatment and emergency medical care for the emergency medical system in the City of Lincoln and its medical service area; (iii) recommend and prepare dispatch and treatment protocols to be followed by emergency medical care personnel in the emergency medical system; (iv) provide quality assessment programs and review for all aspects of the emergency medical system in the City of Lincoln and its medical service area; and (v) review and make recommendations for improvement to the emergency medical care system in the City of Lincoln and its medical service area.”

    I mean, maybe Michaelis has some qualifications for the position we’re unaware of, but at first glance, this looks like the misuse of a important public oversight board for the purposes of helping a party hack build a resume.

    Chicago on Salt Creek.

  31. Julie Schmit-Albin says:

    It is my understanding that Dr. Sarah Cada has ties to the abortion industry (despite being a Pius X grad.). Kyle and Dr. Cada re; emergency medical services? Seems Planned Parenthood’s Lincoln abortion facility has called an ambulance a time or two. Hmmm.

  32. RWP groopie says:

    RWP is there anything you are not an expert on? I sit ga, ga, waiting in breathless anticipation for your pearls of wisdom. Please go on. Tell us more about the pipe line, Obama, Bruning and anything else.

  33. Ricky says:

    A tea party endorsement and two dollars will buy a medium coffee at Starbucks.
    Mr Bruning looks like an amateur campaigner next to Mr Nelson. Bruning will go down in flames and that will show him for taking the money from the ethically challenged David Sokol.
    After the SEC’s investigation of Mr Sokol, could be that all the money Sokol collected for Bruning will have to be sent back.
    So, don’t spend that money yet AG!
    Better yet, why don’t you drop out of the Senate campaign and concentrate on the job Nebraskans elected you to perform?

    Ricky From Omaha

  34. Cigar Smoker says:

    “A tea party endorsement and two dollars will buy a medium coffee at Starbucks”

    Shouldn’t it buy a cup of tea instead?

  35. anon says:

    Didn’t Vile Kyle go to law school? Maybe his appointment to the EMS Oversight Authority will give him some cred if he decides to become an ambulance chaser.

  36. Anonymous says:

    My theory, coming from a total observer who just reads the paper, is that when Kyle was considering running for city council Mayor Beutler and his staff and political hacks poured over New Nebraska Network and evaluated if there was anything he had on ink that would make him a political liability. In doing so they found a very well researched, informed, idealistic young man who had a place in shaping policy and a genuine concern for citizens.

  37. TexasAnnie says:

    Well Anonymous at 11:43 above, I used to read the papers when I lived there; every day, every one of them, in addition to close up and personal observation of your Unicameral. Now I just read your various Nebraska blogs, occasionally, to see what y’all are up to. I know Kyle only by his writings and I must say, they come across much more intelligently than most of what I read here. But I don’t agree with Kyle’s philosophy (and I did study real PHILOSOPHY some decades back). He’s consistently WRONG in his thinking, but very astute and correct in his logic.

    As to the Tea Party, the comment someone made above about Doug Kagan as local originator is true. When our issues corresponded, the Libertarians worked in concert with Kagan. My complaint was then, and remains: Y’all are mum with regard to corporate welfare; but y’all take great offense with regard to people welfare. Why the inconsistency? I don’t know your current Tea Party players. But appearance lends a belief that they want freedom for themselves, but not for their neighbors.

    And finally, I must say, what y’all did to the Beatrice dozen last year illustrates that you know NOTHING about ethics….. It’s an either/or dichotomy. Either you provide for those who truly cannot provide for themselves, or, give ’em a (legal) right to die! It’s the only means for dealing with their sad dilemma ETHICALLY! I know. I know. Some jerk is going to write on here that “charity” is the best means for caring for the disabled. Uh huh. So why not look to “charity” when dealing with plutocrats? And why not look to “charity” to fund the high cost (but low quality) public education offered at the University of Nebraska? It’s your inconsistency which makes fools of MOST NEBRASKANS!

  38. Anonymous says:

    Anon 9:48- AKA Holley Bolen- It looks like the Sen Fisher talk is making you a bit nervous? This 3 way race, Flynn doesn’t really count, is just how our other Republican Senator J won the primary for Governor. With Jon beathing up on Don, Deb can garner votes. Sen Fischer will be a fantastic alternative to an the 2 proffesional candidates, one who has run for what seems like forever ( and his clothes show it), and another who is like a kid on Christmas morning ever so eager and really a pain in the a$$. Now Bruning has a lot of money and is well organized but he can’t get out of the shadow of his own ego! As it will be a Republican who wins the race over Nelson I can see it being a Bruning/Fischer winning the primary with Stenberg anchoring the 3 way. Question is how badly will Bruning screw up and drive votes to Fischer? Oh and don’t foreget to factor in the Governor in all of this, as we all know he does remember Bruning supporting TO a few years ago:)

  39. Anonymous says:

    I’m sure any day now Governor Heineman will come across Gerard Harbison’s blog and appoint him to some lofty committee assignment. Nah, not likely considering he doesn’t even vote.

  40. RWP says:

    Thanks, Anon. Cow. at 9:42, but I have more committee work than I can handle, and when you serve on federal advisory panels three of four times a year, you tend to leave this sort of thing to local experts. But the operative word should be ‘experts’. If a committee is so unimportant it can be used as a political door prize, it should be dissolved.

    By the way, I do vote. Consistently.

  41. Grundle King says:

    Texas Annie, as a UNL alum, I’d like to know exactly what was ‘low quality’ about the education I received.

    As far as the corporate welfare vs. people welfare thing goes…I think you’ll find a pretty simple explanation of the dichotomy that you perceive.

    First off, the people welfare thingy…most of us are capable of recognizing that sometimes, people need a helping hand. I can appreciate the fact that many times, through no fault of their own, bad things happen to good people. I don’t mind helping them. However, where the philosophical split arises is just what kind of help should be provided, and for how long. I believe in giving people a hand-up, while it seems Dems would rather just give hand-outs. I believe that, after awhile, if you’ve been receiving government assistance and you’re no closer to achieving independence than when you started, then it’s time for the government to cut their losses. Either learn to be a productive member of the American society, or find a new society to leech on. I don’t believe in a welfare system that encourages people sit on their asses rather than get out and get a job. If people can live comfortably enough on welfare that they can look down their noses at any, and I mean ANY job, then I believe there is something wrong with that system.

    Now for the corporate ‘welfare’ thingy. Let’s just start by acknowledging the glaring, and irreconcilable difference in opinion regarding the terminology. Democrats love to call it “welfare” when the government invests in a business to spur economic growth…you think it’s welfare, we think it’s an investment. We expect to see a return on that investment in the form of increased employment and increased tax revenue. When it comes to people, we expect to see a return on the investment there as well. Now if a corporation receives economic assistance from the government and fails to demonstrate any sort of positive economic impact, then I think the government should seriously reconsider providing any additional assistance…the same goes for people on welfare. So if the state government gives tax breaks to a corporation, which entices that corporation to locate in Nebraska and create new jobs and revenue…that qualifies as what I like to call “a good thing”. But if all the corporation is going to do is re-locate jobs within the state, then no, I don’t think they need our help.

    Now, I realize I’m just an idiot bumpkin with a 3rd rate edumacation from the University of Nebraska-Drinkin’…but I hope all my scribblins make sense.

  42. Bob Loblaw says:

    All I’m gonna say about Jon Bruning is this; I saw him speak recently to a small group. He had some aides or handlers or whatever you want to call them helping him out. I noticed and after talking to a few others in attendance we all thought that Bruning had a real “John Edwards” vibe

  43. Lil Mac says:

    BobLob, you are talking about Bruning. You aren’t talking about Stenberg or Nelson. That is because this is the hottest Senate race in the nation, a mountain of pissed off American voters want to skin Nelson alive, and Bruning is in the lead for Nelson’s seat. Despite the political teeth gnashing of the OWH, LJS and others who hope to somehow imagine Nelson isn’t Nelson and that Bruning isn’t where Bruning is, such are the facts the situation. And that being the situation, it is to some large degree Bruning’s race to lose. Since many candidates aren’t defeated by anything other than a combination of focused scrutiny and their own silly momentary comments, there are people around such candidates to help keep them aware of such scrutiny.

    As for Bruning’s aides being attractive females, there aren’t many ugly people who go into the public side of politics that is aide work. And most campaign staffs are full of women. They vote nowadays too, you know.

    But if you are saying something more like an accusation of wrongdoing on Bruning’s part, then you should state that. Otherwise, we must assume any young attractive female aides working for Ben Nelson necessarily have baggy-flesh fetish. But you don’t assume that, do you?

    If there is a “John Edwards” vibe out there, it is in your pants along with your extra small principles and your stunted ability to make a better argument.

  44. TexasAnnie says:

    Well Grundle King, I do appreciate your civility today. But corporate welfare going on in Nebraska is larger than simply granting tax incentives. Consider LB386, LB387, LB388 and the $25M of new spending on the Innovation Campus this year alone in Nebraska! Contrast those taxpayer expenditures with this year’s Medicaid rate cuts. And please consider that no matter what, the remaining BSDC inmates will never, and I do mean NEVER become taxpayers. Nebraskans have already “cut their losses” there, ‘eh?

    Your arguments are unconvincing. Welfare is welfare. The University of Nebraska is the “welfare king” up there, and, it’s recent AAU turmoil (which was not the fault of the Texas football program by the way) does not imply “quality,” does it?

  45. Too Bad says:

    Julie S-A, what are you talking about? What kind of vague speculative crap is that? When I hear the words “ties to the abortion industry,” I think of YOU. You are obsessed with abortion!

    Grundle King, the “people welfare” system you describe doesn’t exist and hasn’t for a long time. It was phased out after the passage of the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Act in 1996.

  46. Bob Loblaw says:

    Lil Mac,

    What the H? Wow, all I did was compare Bruning to another politician. He gave alot of people present a vibe that made us think of John Edwards. I’m abosultely 100% not accusing him of anything.

    Maybe I’ll just say this then lil mac. John Bruning would be as great of a Senator as the Honorable John Ensign. There you happy.

  47. Grundle King says:

    Too Bad, ‘phased out’ doesn’t mean it doesn’t happen.

    TexasAnnie, the AAU “turmoil” is a joke. They disregard agricultural research, which the university is heavily involved in, and the medical research at UNMC was not included because UNL and UNMC are administered separately…yet other universities with medical centers get considered as a whole. The AAU rankings are based on research expenditures, faculty associations with organizations of limited scope, and faculty awards…which seems like a pretty bogus way to gauge research. Seems to me that expenditures are irrelevant if they don’t produce results. Indeed, the AAU seems to favor the idea that all problems can be solved if you throw enough money at them.

  48. TexasAnnie says:

    Okay, Grundle King. Let’s call it a draw on the AAU turmoil. What about your notion that corporate welfare (LB386, LB387, LB388 + Innovation Campus) THIS YEAR in Nebraska is of lesser significance than people welfare?

  49. Lil Mac says:

    2:56. You went from pressing an unsupported oblique accusation, to pressing the same unsupported oblique accusation but with the addition of transposition error. You are sputtering because I obliquely suggested your junk is tiny? Come on. If you are going to get in the business of running whisper campaigns fueled on bull crap, you’d better get used to the taste of it.

  50. RWP says:

    I have no idea why TA thinks Innovation Campus is corporate welfare. In fact, lack of industrial interest seems to be a feature of the project. I’ve been reluctant to criticize it, because I’ve always considered it possible Perlman was just holding his cards close to the chest, but so far, the project has been free of obvious beneficiaries, other than the companies immediately involved in construction, and there hasn’t been a whole lot of that.

    It’s possible it’s just another white elephant cooked up by a UNL administrator trying to think big with other people’s money, but corporate welfare? They should be so lucky.

  51. Jenn says:

    I looked at the map, and it doesn’t appear to be true that “Keystone XL is routed over one very small stretch of the far northeast Sandhills.” There may well be other pipelines crossing the sandhills without environmental damage, but this particular company has a history now of leaks. I read that they just had one in N. Dakota. I don’t understand how groundwater flow can account for removing all risk to the aquifer–the oil would have to travel a very long distance NE to avoid that. Maybe someone can explain why that is a likely outcome? I would honestly like to know, because most of the info out there on this issue seems pretty biased.

    It’s pretty silly that anyone raising questions about the wisdom of this pipeline plan is labelled as some kind of Jane Kleeb wannabe. If we really want to have an impact on oil prices and resources, we need more refineries here in the U.S., and I’m all in favor of that. Meanwhile, I don’t know about you, but I thought the Supreme Court’s Kelo v. New London decision was incredibly wrong, and the same principles apply here. Some of my relatives are being pressured to have this pipeline cross their land. They don’t have a heckuva lot of options about this, and so far there’s no protection being offered by our state legislature. Today’s OWH said a bill is advancing, but it has been stripped of economic loss protections. So if your field gets ruined, I guess that’s on you until the company takes its sweet time to fix it? Assuming they still have the money to fix it? Sorry, I don’t see that as conservative values, or property-owner centered values. I’m honestly mystified as to why conservatives love this pipeline thing so much that they don’t even want prudent safeguards put into place. Maybe the people FOR the pipeline are just as much about out-of-state interests as the people AGAINST it like Jane Kleeb. Hmmm.

  52. Brian T. Osborn says:

    I don’t like it that a FOREIGN company is coming into my state and using strong arm tactics, threatening our landowners with imminent domain, to shove their damned pipeline down our throats. Let the Canucks build their own damned refineries and pollute their own damned lands. If they want to sell us the refined products, we can pay them what the market price is for it. Isn’t that what “free trade” is all about? I don’t understand why some of you forget all about your state’s rights arguments when this issue is brought up. If they’re valid for other purposes, they should be for this one as well.

  53. Bob Loblaw says:

    Lil mac,

    I accused no one of anything. All i’m saying is we all had a strange feeling about the whole deal. I’m sure if I met Bill Clinton I’d have a strange untrusting feeling from his as well. I’ll put it this way, I wouldn’t want my daughter or sister working for either one.

  54. RWP says:


    I do believe Nebraska is fully within its rights to impose strangulatory regulation on pipelines, limited only by the ICC. We seem to have chosen not to. Myself, i think that’s a good idea.

    By the way, it’s ’eminent domain’.

  55. Anonymous says:


    ICC? As in the Interstate Commerce Commission? That hasnt been around for about 15 years…get with the times

  56. Brian T. Osborn says:

    Thanks for the ****ing English lesson, RWP. I hope the International Chess Club applies eminent domain on something that YOU own, so that you can enjoy the full fruits of its benefits.

  57. RWP says:

    I thought you’d like to know, BTO. Apart from anything else, if you know how it’s spelled, you can look it up and read about it.

    ICC = interstate commerce clause.

    When I read about it, I found something interesting. Suppose you live on a parcel of land, and some jerk buys every parcel of land surrounding you. Eminent domain gives you, as an individual, a right of way to your property across his land.

    It’s not always as bad as Kelo vs. New London.

  58. Brian T. Osborn says:

    Yeah, RWP, if I was writing a peer reviewed dissertation I probably would have, but I’m not quite so anal when it comes to the drivel I post on blogs. I’ll admit, I get lazy. What’s your excuse?

  59. TexasAnnie says:

    RWP: PPP’s (public-private partnerships) are examples of corporate welfare. Otherwise the private partner would simply incur all cost of the venture being considered i.e. true capitalism. PPP’s usually grant the ‘public’ side the COST, and the ‘private’ side the BENEFIT! Now I don’t want to waste a lot of time engaging in a semantic argument; I simply want to remind readers here that tax abatement is not the ONLY form of corporate welfare. Grundle King’s idea above that corporate welfare is an “investment” is laughable, as you point out via your slight criticism of the Innovation Campus boondoggle! While I lived in Nebraska the buzz was all about ethanol; where’s the return on those “investments?”

  60. RWP says:

    There’s little doubt ethanol has been a boon to Nebraska. It’s driven up the price of corn, the farmers are raking in cash, and the state coffers, while not full, are in far better shape than those of, say, Texas.

    Ethanol subsidies are great for us and terrible for America. They do next-to-nothing to reduce carbon emissions; they cost the Federal government billions, and they drive up world food prices, causing unrest all over the globe. You expect me to support them?

    My muted criticism of Innovation Campus is basically a lingering suspicion that the plan isn’t as stupid as it looks based on only its public footprint. UNL’s administration is reflexively secretive. They might be telling the public everything, but I doubt it. And like most of the posters here, I know little more than I read in the newspapers.

  61. Dennis the Democrat Menace says:

    Walton’s piece today on the Nebraska GOP chief is fawning beyond believe. What I can’t understand is how Kay Orr became relevant again. Is the Republican Party in that bad of shape that they are relying upon relics in the attic. What’s next–James Baker for President?

  62. RWP says:

    That’s floccinaucinihilipilification. You omitted “il” in the 8th syllable.

    Jeez, if you’re going to yoose a wurd, lurn hou too spel itt.

  63. Anonymous says:

    Kind of slow around here. Maybe it will pick up when redistricting is brought up on the floor of the unicam. It will be such a sweet, and often missed, sound to hear Mello, Nordquist, and Conrad cry foul. I’m sure the commentary will be worthy of all the coverage it will receive. Yet in the end the 5 – 4 committee vote will be amplified on the floor. The interesting issue will be to see how Sen Louden motivates his troops to help keep his district and instead remove Sen Shilz from his. You can bet Sen Harms will be supporting Louden as he wants to be the king of the panhandle………Where will Sen Fischer be? Oh and what happens as the metro gains yet another seat? I think there will be 14 in Douglas county and 4+1 in Sarpy, giving the Metro 18 complete Senators or 37% of the total.

    But the real fun will be getting Mello and Nordquist, and the rest of the lib bunch, on record saying the Hispanic vote in South O doesn’t deserve a Senator. We all know it’s because those two just want to rule over the South Omaha area! North Omaha is so much better organized so the minority districts will stay intact or get stronger, but as South O isn’t so well organized Mello and Nordquist will remain in control, and will ensure it stays that way for the next 10 years.

  64. Anonymous says:

    Of the fourteen Democrats and Democrat-Populists who have been Governor of Nebraska, how many of them were women? Surely three or four. It cannot be “none” because that would be back-of-the-bus type stuff.

  65. TexasAnnie says:

    So is corn your measure of Nebraska wealth, RWP? What of the cattle feeders? Has ethanol production been a boon to them? And what about water usage? Will Nebraska keep getting sued by it’s irrigating neighbors to the West and South? I challenge your statement that ethanol subsidies are good for Nebraska. I applaud your statement that ethanol subsidies are terrible for America. Both for their impact on the rest of the world as you enumerate, and, for their hypocrisy of Republican Party values: a free market and smaller government!

    Thanks for your candor.

  66. anonymous says:

    Dan Parsons: Nice work with the rumor stuff. Its the only hope your guy has (zero). If Bruning gets hit by a truck tonight, Stenberg still isn’t going to be the nominee.

  67. RWP says:

    The GOP are proposing to cut ethanol subsidies, TA? Maybe it’s time to turn away from the keyboard and pick up a newspaper?

  68. Not a Subject of the Crown says:

    It’s a good thing the State of Nebraska is overpaying an IRA terrorist to correct our spelling. Whatever would we do without him? One might think he had more important matters to attend to, such as earning his pay by concentrating on teaching our students in his classes at UNL. But then again, we’re all considered to be just a bunch of heathens by those ass kissing royalists.

  69. Macdaddy says:

    Obviously you aren’t a subject of the crown if you think IRA terrorists are royalists. But you are a subject of Mirth and Derision.

  70. Anonymous says:

    Anonymous at 5:26 PM,

    You don’t seem to realize that the plan Schilz and Fischer drew up to prevent Schilz from losing his seat probably can’t pass a court test. The only way they could figure out to prevent Schilz from losing his seat was to carve off part of the city of Alliance. They are supposed to respect the boundaries of political subdivisions. Slicing off the minority section of a small town of 8000 people just to prevent a politician from loosing his seat is pretty much just plain gerrymandering to suit the needs of a single politician.

    Harms and Louden are both term limited, they can’t run for reelection. They’re just representing their constituent’s best interests. Schilz on the other hand is only representing his own interests. The panhandle is safe Republican territory, but the people who live there don’t think they should have to give up their rights just to save the seat of one self-serving Republican S.O.B. in the Legislature.

    Rumor has it that both Fischer and Langemeier want to continue in politics. It will be interesting to see what they do after the hearings. They’re going to have to consider what alienating a block of 10 or 20 thousand Republican voters in the panhandle would do to their prospects in a future Republican primary for any office.

    Fischer could be ending her career if the present proposal comes out of committee. Howard Lamb, a previous occupant of Fishers’ seat from Custer County, showed up to protest moving Custer County out of the district and taking on the rest of Loudens’ district. Is she willing to piss off present constituents by trading them for others who will be even more pissed to see her represent them? It’s not the kind of move a smart politician would make. It will be interesting to see if she’s willing to put Schilz political ambitions above her own.

  71. TexasAnnie says:

    I am all too familiar with the current GOP talking points, as I am with progressive rebuttals, RWP. And we’ll see the gas and ethanol subsidies revoked when it snows in June in Houston!

    Thank-you for your back-handed agreement with my thesis: Nebraskans are fools for believing in “economic development” schemes devised by their “public servants!” (And Nebraskans are absolutely “retarded” when it comes to ethics…)

  72. Macdaddy says:

    Whatever, Texas Annie. BTW, since we are fools and retarded to boot, when are you going to give up beating a dead horse? Surely you understand that analogy, living in Texas and all.

  73. Anonymous says:

    Nebraskans have strong ethics but those ethics float on a sea of profound political stupidity.

    Nebraskans think political arguing is worse than the unchecked consolidation of political power. Nebraska’s unbalanced Unicameral, and the fact that most Nebraskans disregard principle and policy to vote for “the person”, suggests a pathological fear of political argument which is freedom itself. There is no redeeming quality or good intention within Nebraskans that can counter the impact of such dangerous stupidity.

    While all Americans harbor such thinking to some degree, it is distilled in Nebraska into a much purer version of politically suicidal dumbass.

  74. Ricky says:

    Sweeper, give us a new thread. Please! RWP has run out of valid arguments for anything and is turning into a sourpuss spell checker while the rest of the pack are biting at each others ankles. A new thread about the redistricting issue seems in order.

  75. Anonymous says:

    What is Jon Bruning’s opinion on redistricting. Deb Fischer seems to be opposed and in support of every line the committee drew. I guess she was for and against it before she was against and for it. The woman has an amazing death grip on both sides of every issue.f5e

  76. RWP says:

    Hey, ‘not a subject of the crown’, some good American lyrics for you.

    “Schools out for summer”

    So fo the next three months I will be unpaid by the University of Nebraska, and you cretins will have your spelling (and more importantly, your facts and fumbling attempts at logic) corrected gratis. It’s my personal mission, perhaps quixotic (look it up) to try to make the Left a little less stupid. And of course, by definition, less leftist.

    By the way, any time you want to identify yourself by name and then call me an IRA terrorist, my lawyer and I will be eagerly awaiting, you pusillanimous little coward. I doubt you have much worth taking, but we’ll take the lot.

  77. Not a Subject of the Crown says:

    Sweeper! Please! A new thread before that Irish Republican A**h*** spelling terrorist pops a blood vessel in his head and destroys the remaining three brain cells in there!

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