Monday, September 1, 2014

Hop On Board The Loonyville Trolley

I love the smell of crayons. And freshly sharpened pencils. I like the crackle a composition notebook makes the first time you open it. As much as I hated the end of summer (I am such a summer person to begin with,) fall was the opening of curiosity season. There was always new stuff to learn when the weather turned the corner and the air took on that distinctive smell of leaves beginning to decay. Today is Labor Day and even though it's still pretty warm, the season stands poised on that corner. Here and there you see yellow leaves, and some are even on the grass beneath the silver birch in the back yard. It's always an early "turner," so while this is no surprise, I do sigh just a little as I mow over them.

Well, it's that time of year. The Loonyville Trolley is all kitted out and ready to go. All aboard! You're just in time for all the fun. 

We are heading down the tracks into a new election cycle, and some of the races are going to be pretty darn interesting, even here in Minnesota. Governor Dayton's done a respectable job of salvaging the state after the reign of Tim 'TSTL' Pawlenty who, despite his slash-and-burn tax policies, managed to depress our local economy into a coma while raiding the state education fund for cash. At least the Governor paid back the schools...which is a big plus in my book. He may not be a total shoo-in, but I think he's gonna be just fine. St. Amy of Klobuchar doesn't have a race this year, so she can continue her good works for the state unimpeded by electoral moronics. Which leaves three races I'm following and which you, gentle readers, are going to follow by default. 
  1. Democrat Senator Al Franken v. Mike "Lemme Take Them Stitches Out Myself" McFadden
  2. Republiclown Representative John "Do You Like Me Yet, Koch Boys?" Kline v. some sacrificial cow whose name I can't remember....Obermober-something....redoux.
  3. Mendota Heights Mayor Sandy 'I just love roundabouts' Krebsbach v. Neil Garlock
Two of the three races are going to get lots of national scrutiny.....I won't spoil your fun guessing and tell you which, but let's just say CongressClown Kline is one of the Flippable Final Four in Bill Maher's Flip-A-District

To bring everyone up to speed on Exciting Minnesota, let's start with Al Franken.

Now, Al's been pretty good over in that thar Senate place. He's a smart guy, Harvard grad, can think on his feet, all that good stuff. He's turned out to be a quiet but good senator, not the buffoon everyone predicted considering his books and SNL run. His emails are a PITA, but hey, at least he's not flooding my snailmail box with paper. Electrons are easily dispatched back into the bit bucket in the sky with no ill effects. Where I am getting into trouble with Al is his position on gun control....or rather his lack of a position.

This is no small matter. Gun control is, in my view, the top of the domestic policy list. Senator Franken, on his website, has this to say about gun control:
Minnesota has a long tradition of gun ownership, and I support Minnesotans' right to own a gun for collection, protection, and sport. I also believe that the Second Amendment protects that right against both the federal government and the states.
But the right to own a firearm is not one to be taken lightly. I believe Minnesota has struck the proper balance, for example, by requiring background checks and live firearms training for carry permits.
This is about as big a non-statement as I've ever read. I looked at his voting record, and he's got a 100% from the Jim Brady gang, but his lack of a proactive statement on his website is least to me. I guess I want to hear...and read...more from him on his support/lack of support for sensible gun laws.  In August alone, we have had more than a dozen shooting deaths in the Twin Cities area. It's time to decide what exactly a "well regulated militia" means in this century, and figure out a way to get guns treated the same way as cars: License with photo ID and insurance. If you want to own a gun, be prepared to take full responsibility for it. 

Meanwhile, the guy running against Al must be an escapee from Bedlam. McFadden has an ad running where his kid tells us how his dad is so cheap that when he heard the doc was gonna charge $100 for stitch removal, Dad grabbed a scissors and took the stitches out himself. This is the same guy that wants to waste more taxpayer dollars to repeal Obamacare. This would be the last person I'd want in Washington. He's not only cheap with his family, he doesn't think people in general should have access to health care. This is loony talk, and his family seems to think that's just fine.  Ummm. I'm not sure this is something to be proud of. 

Well, if this is the caliber of what we are to expect this fall, bring it on. At least we can get a few laughs outta the deal. 

And if all this off-year kamikazi kampaigning is just too weird for you, take heart; it's September 1st and it can only go on for 8 weeks...until Tuesday, November 4th

And if it's not weird enough for you, not to worry. The race for the White House begins in earnest on November 5th. 

The Wifely Person's Tip o'the Week
 Treat yourself to new crayons, some pencils, and a lunchbox.
Take them to work.
You'll feel refreshed, young, and prepared. 
It doesn't get any better 'en that. 


  1. In defense of Al's stance (or lack of) on guns, he knows very well it's a career-ender to venture anywhere near the lightning rod of gun control. His statement (as cited above) would not lose a vote among moderates, would be overlooked by the more adamant gun control enthusiasts, and it poses no threat to concerns of existing sane gun owners. The hardliner assault weapons collectors and backyard militia members wouldn't vote for him anyway. Al knows full well if he were to make a statement, especially a campaign pledge leaning any closer to stronger gun regulation, it could guarantee his defeat. He'd rather remain quietly (seemingly) conciliatory on this subject, so he can remain in Congress to vote on more pressing matters.

  2. For all that I'd like to see Al be more proactive, he DOES have to contend against what is no doubt an opponent very well-financed by the Koch brothers. I don't live in a "gun state" so it is not tops on anyone's radar (though it has been fun to watch Chris Christie dance around the issue).,..but it's far more important (for now) to keep Al in there than to ask him to grandstand' about new gun laws that have zero chance of passage.

    1. Jill , it's fun to watch Chris Christie dance -- period.

  3. I don't even know how I ended up here, but I thought this post was great.
    I do not know who you are but certainly you are
    going to a famous blogger if you are not already ;
    ) Cheers!

    1. Thank you, whoever you are! Please feel free to catch up and leave more comments!

      the wp