Saturday, March 29, 2008

What About Pipkin?

On the way to Home Depot this afternoon I passed a 4-foot by 8-foot Pipkin for Congress sign. Yes, this afternoon. Now it didn't hit me until after inhaling primer paint fumes for about an hour and after opening a Harris-for-Congress fundraising letter, that we still haven't received a satisfactory answer to the question: why. Why did Sen. Pipkin try to make it that much harder for Real Republicans to defeat Gilchrest?

I have asked Newt Gingrich the same question and got an indirect response. Wayne is an old friend, was loyal to the GOP and is concerned about the Bay, yadda yadda. Oh and Newt doesn't think party activists should try to remove ("purge") the party of politicians with which they disagree. Yeah.

But Newt wasn't running for office (and if he's smart he won't, ever again). Sen. Pipkin was, I assume, in the race to win. That is, he wanted to take Gilchrest's seat in Congress, why? a. He didn't think Gilchrest was serving Republicans in District 1; and b. He didn't think the major challenger was quite right for the job.

Now I asked him: If you wanted Gilchrest out of office, why did you enter the race? By entering the race late in the primary you virtually guaranteed Gilchrest would prevail. I have yet to receive a response. So I have decided to make it a multiple choice question figuring that Pipkin was the type who likes to play the odds.

I entered the race because:

A. As an Eastern Shore Republican (ES-GOP) I thought I was a shoo-in because ES-GOPs will always prevail against WES-GOPs in this District.
B. I was afraid Sen. Harris would lose against the incumbent so I purposely entered to siphon off all the ES-GOP votes that would have gone for Gilchrest. By presenting the ES-GOPers with an ES-Alternative to the alternative to Gilchrest, I was actually HELPING Sen. Harris defeat Gilchrest! Your're welcome.
C. The odds were good that I would win in a three-way race simply by placing my name on the ballot. If I didn't win, well at least I wouldn't be up to my eye-balls in debt (oh, yeah, I guess you guys would be stuck with Gilchrest for another two or four years). Easy come, easy go, right? If I did win, wa-Hoo! I would be in for life. Those ES-GOPers will keep sending me back term after term. Talk about Easy Street! I wouldn't have to do anything! I don't have a real job. I don't have Naval Reserve duty obligations. I already live out here! I can finally chuck that gruelling Bay Bridge commute to Annapolis 90 days out the year!
So, either way, Pipkin had nothing to lose by entering the race and a nice bit of gravy if he did happen to beat the odds. Too bad for the rest of us, though. How inspiring! What an example to set for the next generation of the Internet and Wall Street nouveau-fat. Play the odds and get the gravy. At least the "Republicans for Kratovil" have some principles, severely misguided and foolish principles, but principles nonetheless. I doubt we'll see Sen. Pipkin joining their ranks. Why should he? What are the odds of winning anything? Zero. Mama didn't raise no fool.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Jeremiah Wright in Severna Park

Anyone who has a television or a radio has by now become familiar with the charming Rev. Jeremiah Wright, the now-retired spiritual leader of Presidential hopeful Barack Hussein Obama. The good reverend holds forth on hours of recorded church services about the devil incarnated in every single non-black man and woman in this country.

Now, it seems that notoriety of Rev. Wright has infected members of the clergy here in Severna Park. For those not familiar with our little hamlet nestled on the gentle shores of the Severn River, the residents are among the most affluent, well-educated white people in Maryland. And on Palm Sunday my church, the Severna Park United Methodist Church filled up with its affluent-well educated white people and clergy.

After a wonderful service on the meaning of Palm Sunday, our assistant pastor proceeded to accuse the congregation of being greedy capitalists who cared not a wit for the less fortunate, who were making unjust war upon innocent people and were befouling the earth, to boot. I don't have the transcripts of her sermon, but that was the gist.

I was stunned. This was even more over the top than previous sermons with which I had taken issue. But what was even more appalling was that I seemed to be the only one in the church that morning who was insulted. Am I the only one that heard the pastor's words? Am I the only one who new what those words meant? Possibly.

The people of Severna Park while being rich and well educated, are not very bright. To illustrate, I was walking through one of the richer neighborhoods with my wife and daughter. The idea was to get some exercise after dinner. It was there, in the window of a million-dollar house, was an Obama for President lawn sign. Instantly I tried to reconcile the two facts: 1. the man is rich, and 2; the man supports Obama. The only explanation I can reach is: the man is an idiot.

He is either an idiot or one of the evil white people that the pastor had begged salvation from earlier that day. To give the man the benefit of the doubt, I'll assume he is an idiot. But Mike, can't rich white people support Obama, too? Sure. They can. But they have to understand what that support means. They are saying by their support, "I got mine and I am supporting one of the two people running for president who will make damn sure you don't get yours. I am supporting candidates one of whom considers me and my neighbors to be the devil incarnate and the other who will say and do anything to grab and keep political power."

Of course, there is the extremely superficial set who want to appear to be Obama supporters simply because it's all the rage. God forbid we should be seen as not sufficiently sensitive and politically correct. Superficial idiots. This can also be called the Life Boat set after the movie in which the famous line "Some of my best friends are [insert minority ethnic group]."

On Palm Sunday the church was almost as well attended as it was on Christmas and Easter. So the pastor had a large captive audience, as she knew she would. The senior pastor announces his retirement and what can follow that? Jeremiah Wright, of course!

Sunday, March 02, 2008


Once in a while BudThe Blogger (not his real name) when he's not obsessing over how fellow blogger Joe Albero (his real name) is getting along in Salisbury, comes up with real interesting information. For instance this snippet from an invitation he received recently:

Kent and Queen Anne's County Republicans are holding a breakfast in honor of Frank Kratovil , Democratic candidate for Maryland 's First Congressional District, 7:30 a.m. on March 11 at the Kent Center in Chestertown. Scott Bramble, Joseph C. Flanagan, Jr., Frank Frohn, Trey Hill, Howard Rose and Karen Willis are hosting.

It's enough to make you want to hurl your guts across the room. Isn't it? Now I don't know the Hosts and Hostess. (And before I get too deep into this, I want state that this may just be a set-up by the Kratovil campign. I t would be easy to do. Find an few unwitting fools, register them as Republicans, rent out the Kent Center for the morning and Boom, you got Mike Netherland writing his little heart out.) But they claim to be Republicans. Time was when that's pretty much all you needed to know about a person. As a Republican you can rest assured that whatever their other shortcomings, they shared with you a certain set of values and beliefs.

No longer. Now we have conservative Republicans and moderate ones, even a few liberal ones. Things are hard enough with that. Now we have Eastern Shore Republicans (ES-GOP), too! Well, what do they believe in? Well you have your conservative ES-GOP, your moderate ES-GOP and so forth, just like you folks on the mainland, except they're on the Shore. Oh, and they'll support Republicans when it suits them.

Now for you Republicans for Kratovil, I have some news, in case you really are Republicans with an ounce of self-respect to share among you. The Democrats are howling in laughter. They're not laughing with you, either. You are the laughing-stock of political activism in MD. We Republicans ES and WES weep for you. We say to you, for Pete's sake, just register as Democrats! I know John Flynn grows another gray hair every time I say this, but for the reputation of you and your family, forget the MD GOP! It is just not for you. Don't worry about us. We'll get along just fine with out you. Trust me.

Mike Netherland
Severna Park


From the CAN YOU BELIEVE IT DEPT.: A blurb in Ron Gunzburger's Politics1 blog indicates among other political developments, that soon-to-be-former Congressman Wayne Gilchrest is at least NOT ruling out stumping for the Democratic nominee for his old seat this Fall.

Gilchrest's not-so-smug-now chief of staff and campaign manager Tony Caligiuri (rumoured to be lobbying to run Alaska Sen. Ted Stevens last campaign this fall)

...told The Hill that the NRCC 'never offered to do any polling for us or really do anything financially for us before the primary" even though Gilchrest had regularly helped the NRCC raise money. Caliguiri even hinted a Gilchrest endorsement of Queen Anne’s County State’s Attorney Frank Kratovil (D) was possible.
I have to say that without the National Republican Congressional Committee, Caliguri would have been out of a job four years ago. This time, the incumbent-protection-racket apparently saw the handwriting on the wall figured it would protect what, if anything, is left of its good name and let someone else take the hit for Gilchrest this time.

Whether Mr. Gilchrest stumps for the Democrats this fall or not doesn't really matter. He's been doing that for the better part of his career anyway. The really good news, however is this:

"No decision has been made about anything," said Caliguiri. Further, he added that Gilchrest "isn’t likely to be involved in GOP politics in the years ahead."

[hat tip: Scott Hollenbeck].