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Monday, December 31, 2007


From Chris over at OpenLeft we get another take on Unity08 along with a great acronym - AWWMNUUBM or Aging Wealthy White Men for National Unity Under Billionaire Media Moguls along with a good question - what do they actually want to do?

Another posting over at The Washington Monthly points out a little fact that seems to have escaped this group while they make their call for bipartisanship:
I suppose that's fine, but one wonders if the group realizes that Barack Obama, John Edwards, and Bill Richardson have already said publicly that they would have Republicans serving in their cabinet -- a claim no Republican presidential candidate has made.
I'm left to wonder if its bipartisanship for the sake of bipartisanship or a call for bipartisanship because they fear the Dems might actually get control of the place.

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Unity08 - Republocrat - Demopublican come out of the closet to meet in Oklahoma

A brief segment from CNN's Wolf Show this AM lead me to a story about Unity08. Turns out that this group of Establishment Politico's are so concerned that the US is so partisan these days that its necessary for some wise, no doubt straight, white & Protestant, men to get together in Oklahoma and "fix" things for all of us.

Don't know about you but I'm gonna sleep sounder because of their efforts -

My only question is where were those folks a couple of years ago during the Republican dictatorship of Congress, you know those lazy dazy partisan days of Delay and Hastert running the House?

I've got a feeling this has more to do with the Corporate Establishment's fears that they may loose control than some grand desire for unity so we can face our mutual problems.

Consider two distinct possibilities the Establishment faces:

1) the Publicans become a religious party, after all that's what its base really wants

2) the Democrats move back to their base and become a populist party

If 1 & 2 happen where oh where will the Corporations, a.k.a the Establishment, go???

Hmmmmm, if both 1 & 2 happen and the Publicans actually read the Bible and start caring about the poor, sick, and justice imagine what could be done on Health Care, the Environment, and tax policy?

If that's not enough to get the old line Establishment Republicans and DLC folks, the Dem's corporate wing, out of their joint closet and to the table I don't know what is -

Update - Digby does a real job on this gathering of gasbags here. The hypocrisy of this group of irrelevant Elders is simply staggering.

Saturday, December 29, 2007

Sorry Andrew but.......

I tend to read Andrew Sullivan's Daily Dish daily and sometimes I agree, sometimes I disagree, and sometimes, as I did today, I find total nonsense.

Since he tends to read his email I sent him this:

Sorry but your Republican correspondent simply doesn't understand today's Democratic Party. For some reason the Republicans are fixated on the concept that GW hatred is the main motivator of the Democratic base. They simply don't understand that most of us know a fool when we see 'em and see the damage that GW is doing on a daily basis to the long term future of the US and the rest of the world. While we can't stand the sight of him and hate listening to the moron speak we just want him gone as soon as possible. Since the Republican base sees him as a good guy and thinks he has done a good job they are left to equate the motivations of our response to GW as similar to their response to Bill Clinton. They hated Bill Clinton because: 1) he couldn't keep his zipper closed and had the bad sense to lie about it; and 2) he was a fairly successful President. We're sick of GW because he is a delusional fool. Those are very different things. Personally, I don't hate GW - I just know he is a disaster of biblical proportions and dread the years of effort it will take to clean up the mess he and his minions have created.

Speaking as somebody who has been deeply involved in party politics for years, Hillary's support is totally based on the fact that she was married to Bill Clinton (name recognition) and that she appears to be a smart lady who keeps her cool under pressure. While she does have the establishment on her side the base ain't excited about her at all. Since she is widely seen as the establishment candidate and a supporter of the war its a bit illogical to assume that those Dems who's whole life is focused on GW hatred would flock to her to get back at GW. The anti-Hillary votes in the party are way larger than the pro-Hillary ones. If Edwards or Obama drops out before Hillary "wins" it all over for her because those two factions will quickly merge and be the majority.

Please let your Republican correspondent know that we DEFINITELY understand that GW can't run again and we will be finally shed of him in a bit over a year. We also know we won't be running against him next year. Who gets chosen as the Democratic nominee won't have anything to do with GW hatred - its just plain old politics as usual in the Democratic Party. Everyone I know counts the hours till GW moves back to Texas and hopefully disappears from public view forever.

Re: the Hillary vs. Obama vs. Edwards race - my vote/effort will be for Obama or Edwards. We need change after Bush not a return to the past.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Why the Repubs hate Huckabee

I've been wondering for some time why Huckabee wasn't the beloved child of the Republican Party. You may have noticed that the entire community of mainline Republican pundits have been dumping on the Southern Baptist preacher from Hope lately. It seemed odd to me - from my uninformed position he seems perfect - he's a fundie - he's a creationist - he's a preacher - he even believes - what more do they want?

Certainly they have been dressing up their contempt for Huckabee in some fairly high minded prose. Take for example this fascinating post from Right Wing Nut House where the author agrees with an attack on Huckabee from the rolling gas bag Charles Krauthammer:
I’m not talking about criticizing the idea that faith animates a candidate’s position on the issues. Nor am I calling for a moratorium on talking about religion in a political context. Neither is Krauthammer. What Krauthammer is saying – and what I am agreeing with – is that a line has been crossed, most notably on the Republican side, that seeks to give religion a privileged position in policy debates – absolute moral authority with a vengeance based not on the efficacy of one’s position on the issues but rather on the strength or nature of their religious beliefs:
Problem is - when you strip all the rhetoric away its pretty simple - Huckabee believes all the fundamentalist nonsense and that turns out to be one big problemo for the Republican establishment! They have been using the fundamentalist for years to gain political power and the little people have always known their place. Sure the elites of the Publican Party would throw 'em a bone every once and while when they needed their votes but they never meant for the fundies to have much say besides a bit of gay bashing every now and then. Now they face a fundamentalist candidate who actually believes what he says and has a chance to get elected. No wonder they are taking a collective dump.

Just imagine - religious wacko's in the Republican Party - whoever let them in? Well you did Mr & Mrs Republican Establishment and now they are eating the brie, measuring the windows for new drapes, and getting ready to take control of the Republican Party.
There was a young lady of Niger
Who smiled as she rode on a Tiger;
   They came back from the ride
   With the lady inside,
And the smile on the face of the Tiger.

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Michelle does it again -

Michelle Lujan Grisham came to tonights DFNM (Democracy for New Mexico) meeting and once again did well for herself. Since this group contained lots of early and big Martin H. supporters I was curious how they would react. Watching this very, very liberal crowd all I can say is that Martin should be worried. She walked onto his truff, had her say, and came out with a few new supporters. If the left wing of the Democratic Party starts to move to her way Martin's campaign is over.

Monday, November 26, 2007

blivey #1 launched in NM Dem Senate Primary

Marty obviously ain't one to let a sleeping blivey lie!

Having a perfectly good charge to slam Tom Udall with he's not about to let it go unused. I'm sure that's one of the basic rules of politics - its just how the game is played.

At any rate Marty let it fly earlier today with emails to all and sundry and the response from the his opponents has started over at Democracy for New Mexico. Now let see if Tom is up for the game.

By the way, when is Tom gonna announce?

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Another reason to hate Microsoft and mildly loath Intel

As usual Microsoft and Intel first ridicule a product then when it shows they copy and exploit it. Today's article in the Wall Street Journal titled A Little Laptop with Big Ambitions shows how they play the game. First a MIT Professor named Nicholas Negroponte proposed the idea - that we build a cheap laptop, under $100 US, for poor children all over the world then load it with software and spread them far and wide. Negroponte had some ambitious goals including both price and numbers that haven't been meet. Per unit price never reached $100 a system but did come in at $188 per box and not many laptops have been shipped. The cute little beast is called the XO. Currently there is a special - send them $399 and they will send you a XO and send one to a child in the 3rd world.

Micro$oft initially ignores it, Intel ridicules it, and then MIT plus AMD and several others build it. Now that its out and Microsoft and Intel fear that their usual lack of vision will leave them behind. So, they have rushed to come up with a competing product called the Classmate, also see here. The problem is that it cost $300 instead of $188 and runs - you guessed it - Windows. Microsoft, because of their fear that 3rd worlders might become technologically literate, jumped into the frey with a $3.00 stripped down copy of Windows and Word, they don't tell us if it comes with their usual assortment of bugs and viruses, but no doubt it does. Anyway, they are using their usual strong armed tactics to sell the Classmate and trash the XO.

Currently it looks like Intel has backed off a bit on their attack on the XO and are now offering the system with a version of Mandrake Linux on it but as for Microsoft - no doubt they are being their usual evil self.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Beware the ballot splitters!

As we head to the Senate primary next June and the race in November I've been thinking for a long time that folks need to look at this map. In my mind the main question to be answered was who can win 2 of the 3 districts on it. I was inclined to say District 3 goes Democratic, District 2 goes Republican and it was all down to what happens in CD1. But this race will be different and frankly I'm not sure if that type of calculation will hold true this time. I fear that there are many Dems and Independents that will vote Republican for "balance". I think they like the fact that we have 1 Dem and 1 Repub Senator and if given a chance will keep it that way. After counting absentee ballots in 2006 I'm convinced that NM is filled with ballot splitters and all those Dem strategist planning the battle to come need to factor that into their calculations.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Chavez packs 'em in for his State HQ opening

Today Marty's State Campaign Headquarters on Menaul opened for business here in Albuquerque and the place was packed. Lots of food, lots of music, and lots of confidence. Based of the comments form this crowd - if Tom U. thinks its all over he has a nasty surprise coming. One seasoned insider said "its gonna be a close and hard race but we will win".

3rd Thursday - Michelle Lujan Grisham shines

I attended the 3rd Thursday meeting last week expecting to see the crew running for the Dem CD1 nomination except Martin H. decided not to show. Not to worry Michelle Lujan Grisham took full advantage of the occasion to impress more than a few of us. I must admit after reading the hit piece on the Dem. for NM website I was wondering if she was a serious candidate. After seeing her in gear I was happily surprised. What she lacks in height she more than makes up for in intensity. I look forward to her debate with Martin H. - it has the potential to really shake things up. My guess is that she could mop the floor with Darren White.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

California Sen. Dianne Feinstein should go!

Finally, finally, it seems that at least a few folks in California have had enough of Dianne Feinstein. From Huffington Post we hear that:
"East Bay For Democracy, a chartered Democratic Club outside San Francisco, will introduce the censure motion on Saturday at the state party's executive board meeting in Anaheim. The Governing Board of the Progressive Caucus of the California Democratic Party and the Progressive Democrats of America are also backing the measure.

In addition to her move to back Mukasey, critics have lashed out at her decision last month to vote to confirm Judge Leslie Southwick to the Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in New Orleans. Southwick's opponents charged that his record on the bench in Mississippi demonstrated that he was both racist and homophobic. The Congressional Black Caucus, Human Rights Campaign and People for the American Way opposed his nomination."

East Bay For Democracy's website

Thanks for doing this!!!!

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Lehrman won't leave Senate race

Prompted by questions from reporters asking if he will leave the Senate race if Udall gets in Leland Lehrman has released a statement titled "Why Tom Udall is Wrong for New Mexico and the United States Senate" via email late last night. It says.....
Members of the Press, Friends of the Campaign -

Kate Nash and Heath Haussamen, two of New Mexico's best political reporters, recently contacted me about my Senate campaign plans in response to Tom Udall's decision to enter the race. I am in to stay and will be filing FEC documents next week, now that I have secured a treasurer for the campaign. I have also been invited to be on KNME TV next week to discuss the issues. Here's why I'm staying in:

Tom Udall's recent vote to table Dennis Kucinich's resolution (HR 333) to impeach Richard Cheney is a prime example of exactly why Rep. Udall would not make a good Senator for New Mexico or the US. Although his votes on the environment and civil liberties make us all proud, his Washingtonian willingness to avoid tough issues means that he cannot be trusted with the leadership role a US Senator must take. A US Senator has the power of the filibuster, a Representative does not. One US Senator can bring the nation to a halt in times of crisis, and I would like to show New Mexico and the United States how that is done, when necessary.

In these dangerous days, with a criminal administration in charge of the most awesome military on Earth, Senators are going to have to realize that their unwillingness to use the power of the filibuster to check an out of control Executive Branch amounts to collaboration. The Nuremburg Principles clearly point to a heightened responsibility for all decision makers within a war-making apparatus. There can be no excuse for not using the filibuster every time immoral war spending or other warfare-enabling bills hit the floor of the Senate.

As George Bush has recently invoked the spectre of World War III, we must keep in mind the moral and historical gravity of our present situation.

Rep. Udall has heard from his constituents often on this topic. In March of 2006, the Democratic Party of New Mexico resolved overwhelmingly in favor of impeaching the President. It is the official policy of the New Mexico Democratic Party to support impeachment. Observers on the scene at the 2006 party caucus say that not only was the thunderous response to the impeachment resolution the highlight of the entire meeting, but that up to 98% of the room stood in favor (based on an estimated 20 votes against out of an estimated thousand voters present).

State Senator Jerry Ortiz y Pino's SJR 5, impeach the President and Vice President passed successfully through three packed committees in the New Mexico State Senate. Since no one wants to end up with the Vice President after impeaching Bush, Kucinich is starting with Cheney.

I personally asked Udall to support Congressman Kucinich at the recent Democratic Party Central Committee Meeting in Albuquerque. His warm greeting and kind words can not make up for the distant noncommittal attitude he displayed when I asked him to support impeachment. There were 86 Democrats who voted for the impeachment resolution, Tom wasn't one of them. New Mexicans need to ask themselves if they want someone who does well in the glitzy but shallow world of polls and cash, or if they want someone who will have the courage to honor their oath of office, represent the will of the people and protect the planet, even if it could be difficult in Washington.

Where's Tom's attention to the will of the citizens in his party on such a critical issue? Where's the courage to act on an oath of office that requires him to defend the Constitution against domestic enemies such as Bush and Cheney?

Congressman Udall's vote against impeachment is unforgivable, and I will make that clear to the people of New Mexico throughout the 2008 race for US Senator and beyond.

One other fact might be worth mentioning here - I remember that people involved in Jerry Ortiz y Pino's SJR 5, a bill calling for the impeachment of Bush et al., said it was killed after Tom Udall made a quite visit to the Round House and meet with several key folks there. Pino's bill was interesting because if passed by the NM House & Senate it would have required the US House to debate Impeachment. Since the Dem leadership in the US House are cowards they wanted that bill dead and looks like Tom helped out. So, Tom's fingerprints were on the death of that bill as well.

Wow - Tom has critics to the left of him, critics to the right of him - whatever will he do?

Bankruptcy Law Backfires

Great article on Bloomberg titled Bankruptcy Law Backfires as Foreclosures Offset Gains (Update1) shows how "Unintended Consequences" are showing up from the Bankruptcy Bill. For those Dems heavy into Bingaman worship lets not forget that he voted for this mess.

Friday, November 09, 2007

HH says Udall will run!

More evidence that the feeding frenzy is in full gear - Heath Haussamen says that:
Udall has decided to run for Senate
I'm still thinking he won't run, we will see -

Kossack's running amuck

As an occasional reader of the Daily Kos I'm never surprised when the Kossack's fall off the deep end.

Well they have done it again - this time its over Tom Udall. With titles like:
Dear Mayor Marty
NM-Sen: Udall trying to give Chavez face-saving way out
its clear we have moved to the silly season.

First they don't understand New Mexico needs more than a vote - it also needs a voice. This is the central problem with Udall worship. Tom is a vote - not a voice. He does not advocate for New Mexico. Evidence for this is easy to find - just look at how he's protected LANL.

Saturday, November 03, 2007

If I were Marty, part 1

Looks like Tom Udall is gonna jump into the Senate race. Sorry to all my Liberal/Progressive friends but I'm just not impressed. Re: Udall, I've always said there is less there than meets the eye -

I've decided to support Marty on this one - heaven know's I've had my issues with him but this time he's the best candidate for the job.

So, as it stands today this is a Marty - Tom race. Even if the rest hang in they are dead meat. What should Marty do?

He needs to go after Tom IMMEDIATELY! He needs to let him know he has a war on his hands today, now, at this very moment in time and space. My guess is Tom thinks its all over as soon as he announces. Marty should rid him of those thoughts as soon as possible.

Marty needs to:
...- Ask this question publicly and LOUDLY! What has Tom Udall done for New Mexico? For the progressives he votes right but were's the bacon? This race is about jobs & economic development and Marty needs to let all know that Tom doesn't care and Marty does. That Marty sees this as an essential part of his job and Tom doesn't.
...- Resolve not to hand the labs, their workers, families and suppliers to the Republicans. Tom stood by and let LANL take a hit. Marty shouldn't waste a second letting all know that he cares and Tom doesn't and that he will pick up where Saint Pete leaves off.
...- Understand his problem is the Primary not the General election. He has real support in the Independents and old time Republicans. He needs to get them to register as Dems and vote in the primary.
...- Point out that Tom is too Liberal for the general election. The Publicans will nail him to a cross in Southern NM & to a lesser extent Albuquerque. Santa Fe politics ain't NM politics.

For Marty this is a win - win set of issues. It will help him in the Primary and General elections.

I know there is more - I'll post them as they hit me.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Thank you John Edwards!

Finally somebody said the truth about Hillary - that she's the Corporate Candidate representing the status quo and Wall Street.

Thanks to John Edwards for being that somebody!

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Oh Happy Day! Pearce to Run!

The conga line at the State Dem Headquarters is forming as we speak!

Steve Pearce has announced!

We get to watch a Steve versus Heather race!

Steve, the right winged wako, against leather Heather!

Since I know of no RePub that likes Heather this is gonna be fun! Getting to watch the knuckle dragging Pearce RePubs from southern NM go into a feeding frenzy is gonna be even more entertaining!

Let's see:
Heather verses Marty = a hard slog!
Steve versus Marty = Senator Marty!

The big question - does Leather Heater move to the right? An early hint could come tomorrow with the vote to override GW's veto of the SCHIP bill. Don't be surprised if she backs down and votes to support the veto as she does wheelies moving to the right. Be prepared for Heather to flush her carefully maintained image of being a "centrist".

Friday, October 12, 2007

Darren want's victory in Iraq!

Check out the video of his announcement on KOB TV. Its very, very White! Or, should that be white!

Two great lines you can't miss:
  Re: Iraq - "Our troops must return in Victory!"
  He's "gonna hang up his guns" but not his passion for our families!

Well folks we now know there's always gonna be one bozo on the Darren White's campaign bus!

Well Darren White is really, really white

As a photographer I know that a picture is worth a thousand words - well this one from Joe Monahan's blog is a winner! Not a single black, Hispanic, or native American in sight! No doubt he will draw some support from those communities but it ain't apparent in this photo!

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Why Udall Won't Run & Can't Win

Before folks launch into this please think!

For those living in New York City and elsewhere around the world - all politics are local and who replaces Saint Pete will be decided locally. What follows is a quick and dirty summary of the situation as it sits today in the wonderful land of enchantment.

The Republican bench in New Mexico is weak - their candidate for Senate will either be Heather Wilson or Steve Pearce. The Republican establishment fears nominating Steve Pearce because he is such a right wing wacko. This is another reason why Saint Pete's announcement is such a surprise - he knows that the Republicans in NM like Steve better than Heather but Steve is poison and Pete knows it. I always thought Pete would not run and in the end find another way to handle handing the nomination to Heather - maybe Pearce has agreed not to run, who knows - but its clear that something is bad wrong with Pete for him to make the announcement this early.

The Republican power structure (Pete leads it!) will do all it can to nominate Heather and my guess is that in the end they will succeed.

So unless we are really lucky the race is against Heather Wilson - she's smart and evil.

Please understand that NM is divided into 3 Congressional Districts - for simplicity call them Northern NM (NNM), Southern NM (SNM), and Albuquerque (Abq). NNM is the most liberal/progressive part of the State. SNM makes Texas look moderate to liberal. Udall does well in NNM but he won't win in Albuquerque (Heather's base) and he will loose horribly in SNM.

The only way he can win is if he runs against Steve Pearce. If the race is against Heather Wilson she will loose in NNM, win slightly in Abq and win big in SNM - ergo Heather wins.

The question that needs to be asked is - can Udall win big enough in NNM to make up for the huge loss he will face in SNM and a slight loss in Abq? Tom knows that and so does everybody else so he won't run.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Bad day for Marty

Debbie spanked Katherine, Rey got 2X as many votes as Joan, and the ever reprehensible Don Harris easily survived Marty's attack. Marty's life could have gotten more complicated.

Have Marty and the Martistas lost it? Only time will tell. Certainly, it was a bad day for Marty and a good day for Diane D.

Saturday, September 29, 2007

The New Mexico Caucus is comming!

Well on February 5th of 2008 the caucus will occur. It will cost the Democratic Party about $400,000 and be absolutely meaningless. It was created by the Big Bill 4 years ago to aid in his Presidential run this year. Big Bill likes to plan especially when other folks pick up the tab.

Anyway, since it is probably the only thing he will win I guess what has to be has to be. But who's to pay for it? Looks like finding the $'s is Lt. Gov. Diane Denish's job plus a few other poor souls. With Bill draining the state dry this ain't gonna be an easy task.

The Journal knows a good Republican when they see one!

Well, the sun sets and rises and sets again and the Albuquerque Journal has done what is to be expected - its endorsed yet another Republican. This time its Joanie Griffin for the District 6 City Council seat. Now technically Joanie became a Democrat just before she decided to run for City Council so I guess they endorsed a Democrat. But since the exceptions always prove the rule the Journal's track record is intact. Anyway, as a card carrying member of Mayor Marty's loyal guard beliefs and convictions won't ever get in the way of grabbing power.

Friday, September 28, 2007

Silly season in Albuquerque

Folks all over the place have been saying lots about the City Council election next Tuesday. Here's my attempt to throw a bit more fat into the fire.

The one thing that is clear to me, and I'm horrified to say it, is that most of what's happening right now and has happened in the Democratic Party since the Ward elections last Spring and will happen till the primary election in 2010 is part of the larger battle for Governor. As an active member of the Democratic Party its obvious that Marty and his people, better know as the Martistas, are buzzing about trying to set things up for the primary against Diane. If Marty can take control of the City Council by getting his people elected he can do lots of favors for developers and they will repay him with a huge warchest to fight Diane. The dirty little problem Marty has is that the Martistas are a dual edged sword that help and hurt him. Having seen them swarm first hand its clear that the Martistas really are not interested in what happens to the Party - their concern is their position in the crowd that surrounds Marty. They seem to delight in making Marty enemies. Because of their activities and Marty's track record the Democratic activist base have come to hate him.

Ultimately this does not bode well for the Democratic Party - as a political junkie its fascinating but I know right now that its going to hurt the party. The problem that Marty and the Martistas haven't considered is that he will be running in a Democratic Primary in 2010 and Republicans and Independents don't count. All his activities in the City Council election will be remembered when he runs for Governor. People have long memories in New Mexico and what goes around, comes around - expect things to get very, very nasty.

Rey Garduno for District 6

This is an easy one and should of been said long ago - folks in Abq's District 6 should go out and elect Rey Garduno as their next City Councilor.

Enough said.

Saturday, August 04, 2007

Senate Dems set House Dems up for a fall -

From CNN/Politics posted a couple of hours ago ...
Last night, the House rejected a Democratic version of the FISA bill, 218-207, with a two-thirds majority required for passage, but the Senate passed a Republican-sponsored bill Friday night, 60-28.

Some Democratic sources have predicted the House will pass the Republican-sponsored measure, and send it to Bush.

"All but one Democrat on the Senate Intelligence Committee voted for it," House Minority Whip Roy Blunt said. "If it's good enough for the Senate Intelligence Committee Democrats, it would seem to me it should be good enough for House Democrats.

"It would also seem to me that it's critical to get that done before we leave here today, and we intend to see that that happens," Blunt said at the news conference with Hoekstra and others.
So, the cowards in the Senate set the House Dems up for a fall.

More thoughts on the new Wiretapping Bill

Some more thoughts on the Democrats that voted for George Bush's bill and what we really got for the last election from PoliBlog:
In regards to Democratic voters who thought they were getting change out of the new Congress, I suspect that the Majority Leader’s words will sound a tad hollow:
“My Republican colleagues chose to rubber-stamp a flawed administration proposal that fails to provide the accountability needed in the light of the administration’s past mismanagement of key tools in the war on terror,” said Senate Majority Leader Harry M. Reid (D-Nev.).
Last time I checked, Reid was the Leader and the Senate was in Democratic hands. I am not sure, therefore, that Reid can peg this on the Republicans, per se. Some of those 60 “yes” votes came from the Democrats–not to mention that if the majority really wanted to find a different solution, they could have worked a little harder at it.

In all honesty, it is rather stunning that they actually have voted here not just to continue a controversial program, but to expand it:
Privacy advocates accused the Democrats of selling out and charged that this bill gives the government more authority than it had under a controversial warrantless wiretapping program begun in secret after the 2001 terrorist attacks. Under that program, the government could conduct surveillance without judicial oversight only if it had a reason to believe that one party to the call was a member of or affiliated with al-Qaeda or a related terrorist organization. This bill drops that condition, they noted.
The only saving graces are that the legislation, as currently written, requires legislative review in six months and apparently does seek some controls over certain activities:
White House and intelligence officials have sought a broad overhaul of the act to allow spy agencies to listen in on terrorism suspects quickly, without having to apply for a court order, as is required for surveillance that targets U.S. residents. But Democratic leaders say the administration’s proposals could lead to broad searches of phone calls and e-mails by ordinary Americans without judicial review.
I know many of my readers, and many, many citizens will find any concerns about the government and surveillance to be unfounded. After all, this is just the government trying to keep us safe, right? However, I would submit to you all that in the grand scheme of things it is always more likely that human being are more likely to make mistakes and abuse powers than they are to do precisely what they ought. As such, the more we empower the federal government in these matters, the more we allow for some monumental errors to take place. This is, after all, the administration that held a US citizen, captured on US soil as an “enemy combatant” for years without charges and without basic legal rights just because it thought it needed to do so.

And to appeal to the Reagan Republicans in the audience, I would note his famous quip: “The nine most terrifying words in the English language are, ‘I’m here from the government and I’m here to help.’” He was there speaking mainly of things like fiscal policy. The matters we are discussing here go well beyond with how the government might spend tax dollars, but to how it treats its citizens.

As a slight digression, and as I ponder the politics of the situation, I wonder what hardcore Second Amendment types think about this kind of behavior. After all, they typically argue that one of the main reasons why they ought to be allowed to keep whatever weaponry they wish is to protect against tyrannical or abusive government. As such, that is a segment of the population that one would think would be concerned about expanded police powers in the hands of the federal government. However, I suspect that they are unconcerned, as they tend to also be stronger pro-defense (which is ultimately rather ironic, actually, as a stronger defense mechanism means a more powerful state that could more easily disarm the even heavily armed citizen.)

It's a year old but still brilliant -

Sometimes while I'm roaming around the web and making prayers to google a bit of wisdom hits me literally in the face. What follows is a great example of the whole process. While wondering why the blogosphere wasn't throwing a collective grand mahl fit about 16 Dems voting for Bush's wiretapping bill I googled the phrase "sold out" and discovered this gem.

Its not directly on topic but it does explain something about the system and why we, the workers bees of the Dem Party, are ultimately supposed to shut up and take what they give us. In the case below the Party gave us Lieberman and by god we were supposed to like it.

From Ezra Klein's blog a July 21, 2006 posting:
It's Not About Lieberman
Josh Marshall on Lieberman:
I think the Lieberman skeptics are really on to something when they point out that in the Kondrackes and others there is this sense that for a well-liked-in-the-beltway senior pol like Lieberman to face a primary challenge is somehow a genuine threat to the foundations of the system. You'd think he was a life peer, if not an hereditary noble, suddenly yanked out of the House of Lords and forced to run for his seat like they do in the Commons.
That's what's so stunned me about this debate. I had it out the other night with a very pro-Lieberman writer who, it came clear to me, believed the entire concept of a primary challenge against Lieberman a simply illegitimate form of opposition. Lieberman, as a Democratic incumbent, had a claim on his party's nomination and his Senate seat that couldn't be challenged by a bunch of bloggers and a cable television executive named Ned. It was the impudence of the whole thing that so offended.

I've really been saddened, in fact, by how often, when I drill down into anti-Lamonter motivations, I find their ideological and electoral motivations mere sandrock obscuring a core rage at this affront to tradition and orderly succession. I didn't believe this even a few months ago, but I've been forced to conclude that what scares folks about Lamont is that he represents an assault on privilege -- Joe Lieberman's, to be sure, but also theirs, no matter what sector of politics they currently represent.

In some ways, Lieberman is the canary in their coal mine, and if his sanctimonious song stops, so too may all of theirs. They never reacted this way to the Club for Growth primaries, or the Unions' promise to work against Melissa Bean, or NARAL's threats to primary Casey, because they were comfortable with the role and global motivations of those groups -- they were part of the structure, and they sought only to make it work better for them, not substantively challenge its mechanisms. The bloggers, however, are different, more unpredictable, less obviously invested in the perpetuation of this fine political system we have. And so they represent not a challenge to Joe Lieberman, but a challenge to the establishment as a whole. And that's why the establishment as a whole is howling.
Here's to my ferverent hope that somebody out there takes the 16 Dems that just sided with Bush to task. I'm tired of being viewed as a doormat by the elites of the Democratic Party. A few more opponents from the Left during general elections will do wonders to make the system wake up and take notice.

Filthy Democratic Cowards

From Kos.

These are the Filthy Democratic Cowards that voted for George Bush's Wiretapping Bill:

Evan Bayh (Indiana)
Tom Carper (Delaware)
Bob Casey (Pennsylvania)
Kent Conrad (North Dakota)
Dianne Feinstein (California)
Daniel Inouye (Hawaii)
Amy Klobuchar (Minnesota)
Nancy Mary Landrieu (Louisiana)
Blanche Lincoln (Arkansas)
Claire McCaskill (Missouri)
Barbara Mikulski (Maryland)
Bill Nelson (Florida)
Ben Nelson (Nebraska)
Mark Pryor (Arkansas)
Ken Salazar (Colorado)
Jim Webb (Virginia)

They deserve our unending contempt for their attack on the Constitution.

If these folks won't stand up to George Bush why should anybody think they will stand up to a bunch of terrorist.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Joe M., thanks!


Thanks for this - the view that all Democratic politics in NM automagically devolves into the Diane vs. Marty fight is starting to get tiresome. It was amusing for a few weeks but folks give us all a break.

Speaking as somebody who ain't a fan of Mayor Marty - where is one shred of evidence that Bryon Paez is a Martista put-up job? I've heard it all before and while it might solidify some of Martin's support with groups that don't like Marty it really doesn't help Martin nor does it hurt Bryon one little bit,

I totally agree with his reader's comment that:
"Marty has run before. So why would he need a hand me down organization? The truth is that Paez plugs into Marty's players. Not the reverse."
Bryon Paez is running because he decided to do so. Based on the reception he got both inside and outside the Plumbers & Pipefitters Hall at last Thursday's Bernalillo County Democratic Party meeting he has a support base that spreads throughout the County.

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Political Pete

So, now Saint Pete wants us to believe he has jumped ship on the Iraq War.

Nonsense - he's still Bush's rubber stamp. He was his rubber stamp last month and will be his rubber stamp next month. This is about his election campaign not about what he actually believes.

From Feb. 2007 in Las Cruces - the obviously unwell Pajama Pete lectures us on the need to give the surge a chance. On that day he still supported Bush and his Iraq War.

Based on Pete's February performance a few suggestions to his handlers:

1) don't do any debates!
2) don't do any public appearances!
3) pray that the Albuquerque Journal keeps its subscribers and continues to protect Pete from all enemies. It worked hard for him during the Iglesias affair but Pete will need them more than ever to stay hidden through this election. They are his best hope for success.

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

For the Morons who want a flag burning amendment

A 4th of July thought from Penn and Teller explaining why we don't need a flag burning amendment to the US Constitution.

Sunday, July 01, 2007

H1B visa - what's next? What's Plan B?

No one should have a moment's doubt that supporters of H1B visas will give up and go home after the death of the Immigration bill. The question is not if they will go for an increase but rather how to do it. The Corporations that want the increase to occur have lots of power and lots of money, they "control/own" many members of the Senate and the House - it will be fascinating to see who they choose as their water carrier.

From Computerworld:
June 28, 2007
by Patrick Thibodeau

The demise of the U.S. Senate's comprehensive immigration reform legislation is a setback for the technology industry's push to increase the annual cap on H-1B visas. But count on a Plan B from H-1B proponents.

The Senate bill was the primary vehicle for efforts to raise the H-1B cap from its current limit of 65,000 visas per year, plus another 20,000 visas that are set aside for foreign workers who have advanced degrees from U.S. universities.

But the proposed legislation, which also would have mandated the development of a national electronic employment verification system, died an early death on Thursday after its sponsors failed to garner enough support for a procedural motion that sought to end debate on the bill and bring it to a vote. The motion got only 46 of the 60 "yes" votes that it needed in order to be approved.

However, the high-tech industry has other options for pursuing an increase in the visa cap, according to various policy analysts within the IT industry.

"There are several options—it's just a matter of making the case," said Robert Hoffman, vice president of government and public affairs at Oracle Corp. and co-chair of Compete America, a Washington-based lobbying group that today vowed to continue its efforts to increase the H-1B cap. See the group's statement here.

The H-1B cap for the federal government's next fiscal year, which starts in October, was exhausted on the first day that the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) began accepting visa applications in April. The USCIS received about 150,000 applications that day, and Hoffman said he thinks the strong demand for visas makes a compelling case for why an increase in the cap is urgently needed.

Option one for H-1B proponents: stand-alone legislation such as the so-called SKIL bill, which was reintroduced in both the House and Senate in April after failing to win approval last year. The bill—officially called the Securing Knowledge, Innovation and Leadership Act—would raise the cap to 115,000 visas and provide market-based mechanisms for further hikes. But a separate measure may be the least attractive option for H-1B backers because it could become a magnet for all sorts of bill-killing amendments related to immigration reform.

Option two: increasing the cap through an amendment to a spending bill. That approach has worked in the past.

Option three: adding an H-1B provision to one of a number of bills that Congress is considering as part of the Democratic majority's so-called Innovation Agenda—such as legislation intended to improve science and engineering training programs. But the IT industry isn't likely to embrace legislation that is seen as partisan because it has backers for increasing the H-1B cap from both parties.

The Senate's action on the immigration reform bill means attention on the H-1B issue will shift to the House of Representatives, said Ken Wasch, president of the Software & Information Industry Association. The Washington-based SIIA issued a statement today saying that the high-tech industry will have trouble finding enough skilled workers if the H-1B cap isn't raised (download PDF).

At this point, Wasch said he isn't sure what the next step will be for H-1B proponents. But like Hoffman, he said that visa relief is needed. "Our companies have a huge problem," Wasch said. "And if the immigration problem is not solved, we create an enormous incentive for our companies to do more of their development work where talent is being developed."

Re: the options presented by the article's author - my vote is for "Option two". There are too many folks complaining about H1B's to go with "Option one" and "Option three" will just be too public. Expect a late night add-on to some massive bill and lots of prayers no one will notice.

H1B visa mess - the $3,500 surcharge is a crock!

I find it troubling how Dems often sugar coat things to make them look acceptable to the base. The fact that they think we will buy into the nonsense is even more troubling. I remember that after voting for the recent onerous bankruptcy bill Bingaman tried to play fast and loose with his treachery by emphasizing he had introduced an amendment to allow bankruptcies for folks who suffer crippling medical bills at a county party meeting. Good try but the audience wasn't buying it. Everyone knew he still voted for the bill even after acknowledging that most bankruptcies are cause by medical debt.

Senator Bingaman - we just aren't that stupid.

So, here we go again - in the posting below we hear that:
Last week, Bingaman voted to impose a surcharge of $3,500 on employers who hire H-1B workers (in addition to the $1,500 fee) to raise scholarship money for American students to pursue degrees in mathematics, engineering, nursing, medicine, or computer science.

Lovely -

Does he think this matters? Certainly he thought it was good enough to keep us from seeing what he really wanted to do!

Enrollment in IT/Computer Science programs across the US is dropping. Students know there are no jobs. Off-shoring and programs like H1B visas have robbed them of that possibility. So how are a few $'s gonna change that? Why are we training folks for jobs that don't exist jobs that the House and Senate are actively exporting out of the US? Moreover, the $3,500 will simply be extracted from the "hides" of the poor slobs that get the H1B jobs - it won't come out of the pockets of corporations.

This is just a crock designed to cover up a bad vote and bad program. When will Bingaman realize that we are smart enough to see through this crap?

Saturday, June 30, 2007

Re: H1B visas, a proposal

Real Green Cards for all H1B holders!

Here's a stab at solving the H1B visa issue - give all H1B folks that enter the US a Real Green Card when they show up at the border. Here we are talking about a Real Green Card - one that would allow the worker to look for any job anywhere in the US.

Currently, H1B visa employee can only work for the employer that brought them into the country. With a real Green Card they would no longer be a techno-slave to the owner of the H1B visa technically they could look for another job as soon as they crossed the border and got handed the card. If they found they were being paid below average wages they could move to another job. If their boss was an ass they could split to another job. This would restore balance to the employer-employee equation for the H1B employee.

Of course the employers would not like this - they want the worker to be their slave. My guess is that Corporate support for the H1B program would dry up immediately. However, it would be a fascinating test of the program’s real intent. We, the IT worker in the US, know its all about getting high skilled workers for low pay but the Companies/Corporations that use the H1B visa system will never admit it. Logically they should support giving Real Green Cards to H1B visa holders but since they lie you can expect their bitter opposition.

[Note - this was also posted as a comment on another blog.]

H1B visas - a view from India

A posting from a blog called "Churumuri" called me to consider how the H1B visa issue was being seen from India. Although it views the process from the other end of the pipeline and finds other villains it struck me as being particularly enlightened. Frankly I have no wish to totally kill off the H1B visa program but remembering the old phrase "figures don't lie but liars surely figure" I wonder ifs its possible to structure the program in such a way that it won't be heavily abused.

How our IT firms wrecked the HIB visa program

DHEERENDRA GOPAL” writes: Later this year, the US Congress will sit down to discus reforms to the high-skill immigration policy. But if someone is to be held responsible for the current sorry state of affairs in the H1B visa area, it is Indian IT firms.

The H1B program was started in “Good Faith” by the United States to help people from “all over the world” to come to and work in the US.

Supporters of the program claimed that the H1-B helped meet the shortfall of scientists and engineers by allowing the import of guest workers, thus preventing the “outsourcing” of high-wage, high-skill jobs to low-cost countries. And they claimed the program paved the way for the immigration of the “best and the brightest” foreigners.

But large Indian IT houses have overexploited the loopholes in the HIB program to such an extent that they have made nonsense of its original intentions.

In their greed for higher and higher profits (every Indian firm hits 30% profits every quarter) they have spoiled a perfectly working program a few years ago to such a state that now getting an H1B has got less nothing to do with talent but has become like buying a supperlotto ticket.

A very good article by Ron Hira in the March 28 issue of the “Economic Policy Institute” exposes how Indian IT firms are playing around with the HIB program.

On the one hand, the HIB program, as is being used, is not encouraging the immigration of the “best and brightest”.
“The largest users of the H-1B program are offshore outsourcing firms, whose business model depends on moving as much work overseas as possible. And these firms do not use the program as a bridge to immigration, for they sponsor very few of their workers for green cards. For example, in 2006, Wipro Technologies applied for 19,450 H1B positions but only for 69 green cards, a 0.004 green card to H1B application ratio.”

And on the other hand, the Indian IT firms are blatantly using HIB for labour arbitrage. The H1B program’s primary safeguard for US as well as H1B workers was the requirement that an H-1B worker be paid the prevailing wage.

Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) has a vast majority of its personnel in the US on either H1B or L1 visas. But its vice-president Phiroze Vandrewala has told Businessworld how his company derives a competitive advantage by paying its visa holders below-market wages.
“Our wage per employee is 20-25 percent lesser than U.S. wage for a simlar employee. Typically, for a TCS employee with five years experience, the annual cost to the company is $60,000-70,000, while a local American employee might cost $80,000-100,000. This (labour arbitrage) is a fact of doing work onsite. It’s a fact that Indian IT companies have an advantage here and there’s nothing wrong in that….The issue is that of getting workers in the U.S. on wages far lower than local wage rate.”

I cannot help agree with the facts in this article. I totally agree that firms like these which abuse the system ought to be severely punished and blacklisted, so that genuine US companies can get their required workers, when they need them.

Read the full story here: Outsourcing America’s technology and knowledge jobs

The H1B mess continues -

Sometimes I'm just too pissed to write about an issue - such as the case with H1B visa's and the recent Immigration Bill that just died in the Senate.

Buried in the questionable Immigration Bill was a massive increase in the number of H1B visas and a new L1 visa program. While its difficult to tell which is really worse right now I'll focus on the H1B visa issue.

Unfortunately the H1B visa program has bipartisan support. I expect Heather and Saint Pete to not care about the middle class or High Tech workers but when the Dems stab us in the back its hard to ignore. While I'm not sure how Rep. Udall views the H1B program I'm sad to say that it has received unwavering support from Senator Bingaman. My communication with his staff has been disappointing. Essentially when it became clear that I didn't agree with them they blew me off -

My first email -

--- intro stuff deleted-----
I'm writing to inquire about Senator Bingaman's views on H1B visas. I became alarmed recently when I discovered that the number of H1B visas would be increase massively by the new Immigration bill. I understand that the Senator was successful last week in cutting the number of visas issued in half but not sure how that effects numbers of future H1B visas.

I and others oppose H1B visas since they are simply a mechanism to cut high tech worker salaries. I personally know of situations where companies only hire H1B visa holders for certain types of jobs - US citizens/legal residents need not apply. The whole situation is simply a farce and the "safeguards" that are supposed to prevent abuse are a joke. I urge Senator Bingaman to join Senator Durbin in opposing more of these visas.

Thanks for your time and be well -
--- end stuff deleted-----

Their reply to the email above......
--- intro stuff deleted-----
xxxxxxx xxxx asked that I get back to you regarding your inquiry about H-1Bs. I am the Senator's staffer who works on immigration issues. As you know, the legislation that we are debating as part of the immigration bill raises the annual allocation of H-1Bs to 115,000, but also contains an escalator mechanism that allows this number to grow up to 180,000 if the cap is reached each year. The immigration bill also tightens the rules regarding the issuance of H-1Bs (these protections were added at the request of Senator Durbin).

Last week, Bingaman voted to impose a surcharge of $3,500 on employers who hire H-1B workers (in addition to the $1,500 fee) to raise scholarship money for American students to pursue degrees in mathematics, engineering, nursing, medicine, or computer science. Although he believes that we should ensure that there is an avenue for talented foreign-born immigrants to work and study in the United States, he also strongly believes that the best way to ensure our nation's competitiveness is to invest in educating our youth and improving the skill set of our workforce.

The amendment Bingaman offered reduced the number of guest worker visas allocated under a new program (separate from the H-1B program) that allows foreign workers to fill a wide variety of non-agricultural jobs throughout the economy. The number of workers under the original version of the bill could have allowed up to 600,000 of such workers to be admitted each year (his amendment reduced this number to 200,000).

Senator Bingaman has many concerns about guest worker programs and their affect on American workers, and as we discuss the immigration bill he will continue to fight to ensure that we are not undercutting American workers.

Please let me know if you have any other questions or concerns.
--- end stuff deleted-----

My reply......
--- intro stuff deleted-----

Thanks for the quick reply -

To be blunt - the problem with all this is that its really a fraud. And sadly, like the bankruptcy bill, its another place where the Democratic Party is stabbing the middle class in the back yet again.

If we are simply gonna import more workers in the Tech industry why do we need to train them? I teach IT and can't tell you how many of my students over the last few years have told me that they were losing their jobs to outsourcing or to a HIB visa holders. Enrollment in IT programs is falling nationwide because student know there are no jobs - the House/Senate/Administration is working hard to send them offshore.

Re: the $3,500 to train workers for jobs that aren't there - well the employers will just take that out of the "hides" of the poor slobs from India or China who get H1B visas. Remember, once they get to the US they can't change jobs or move around. They are stuck. To change jobs they have to go home and start again so their employers can do whatever they want to them. These poor folks are in a kind of hi-tech slavery. Like the bankruptcy bill - sooner or later Senator Bingaman will be embarrassed by his votes for this program.

Be well,
--- end stuff deleted-----

No further replies for Bingaman's office - another email from me......
--- intro stuff deleted-----
xxxxxxx, xxxxxx:

You may have heard of this YouTube video on H1B visas -

Please view it!

It clearly shows that H1B visa process is a fraud.

After this I can't see how Senator Bingaman will continue to support these visas.

The program must be ended now!

Be well,
--- end stuff deleted-----

To date nothing else from Bingaman's office -

Its clear - I will be ignored from now on -

Just so you won't miss it - here's the informative YouTube video on the subject. It pretty much explains how the process is manipulate by Corporate America today and why the "safegards" to protect American workers are a sad joke:

Friday, May 04, 2007

Micro$oft could buy Yahoo ......

If that happens Microsoft would instantly become on of Oracle's Non Stop Linux biggest customers - for details see "Oracle replaces Red Hat at Yahoo".

Wonder how long they will take to rip that of and slap Novell's SLES10 on those boxes?

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Hector, Lem help!!!!!!!!

Calling Lem Martinez & Hector Balderas, I have a question - are either of you gonna run for Congress?

Please consider it - I fear Heather will wipe the floor with Martin Heinrich. It will be a joke - not even close. I don't know who has put it in Martin's head that he can win - probably the D triple C but you know their track record in this district. Please don't let this happen. Martin's a nice guy but needs a few gray hairs before he takes on a filthy viper like Heather.

I need at least the delusion of hope and there is no hope in a Martin - Heather race.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Martin Heinrich, dead before arrival!

I like Martin Heinrich just fine but this piece if true is stupid beyond belief. Does the Gov. actually believe this? No, Richardson ain't that stupid. What races has Martin run and won? What else has he done?

If Pete D. doesn't bail out of his Senate race Heather and the Abq. Journal will paint Martin as a light-weight pretty boy that just not ready for prime time. She will beat him badly.

If Pete bails as I and many, many others expect and Heather runs for Senate - Darren White, the person the Repubs have lined up to run in her stead, will do the law and order gig on Martin and tear him apart.

For my fiends at Democracy for New Mexico they will do the same thing to Eric Greigo - we need somebody that's gone out and done something to run else it won't be worth the effort.

Although I would happily vote for either Martin or Eric we shouldn't delude ourselves - neither can win against Heather or Darren.

Sunday, April 08, 2007 - the concatenator!

Somebody needed a program to put 4 contiguous lines of a file on the same line starting from the beginning of the file and going to the end.

Well, here it is with a simple improvement - you can set the number of lines to concatenate. One notice - this works on Linux - Unix files. A Perl program to convert Windows files with carriage returns (\r) and end of line (\n) characters to Unix/Linux files with only end of line characters can be found here.

You can find this program here.

#!/usr/bin/perl -w
# Author: Michael W Folsom
# April 8, 2007
# USAGE: ./ num_lines_to_concat input_file_name
# PURPOSE: To cocatenate date from X contiguous lines to a single
# line. For example if the data is organized like so:
# 1
# 2
# 3
# 4
# And the program is told to convert 4 lines to 1 you would get:
# 1 2 3 4

# stash the number of arguments
# $#ARGV + 1 is ARGC in C, C++ land
$argNumber = $#ARGV + 1;

sub usageStatement {
print "\nUsage: ./ num_lines_to_concat input_file_name\n\n";

if($argNumber != 2) {

# use the open command to open the input file for reading
open(FILE, $ARGV[1]);

$numLines = $ARGV[0];
$newStr ="";
$i = 0;

while () {
# chop off newline character

# chugger through file X lines at a time and build up new
# output line
if($i < $numLines) {
$newStr = $newStr . $_;
if($i < $numLines) {
#print "\t";
$newStr = $newStr . "\t";
# got data from X lines, print and add a new line
else {
print "$newStr \n";
$i= 0;
$newStr = "";

# if number of lines not equal to 4 then print out remainder
if($newStr) {
print "$newStr\n";



Thursday, March 29, 2007

Manny's toast, Heather and Pete ain't doing so hot either!

Earlier today what's left of the Federal Prosecutors Office here in Albuquerque released the indictments that Heather and Pete so badly wanted to be released before last November's election.

Currently, the best summary of this is by Heath Haussamen.

Turns out that they finally nailed the poster boy of sleaze in New Mexico Democratic Party Politics - Manny Aragon. Frankly no one in the state is surprised, the bigger question is why it took so long to nab him. Moreover, it turns out that its somewhat a bipartisan crime scene as another one of the folks nailed is a former Republican Mayor of Albuquerque.

Is this what Pete and Heather were screaming for? Really it is kind'a anticlimatic - who in NM is surprised that Senator Wackenhut is headed to the pokey? It ain't news when you find a rat in the sewer!

In no small way this venerates Iglesias. Since the Albuquerque Journal has done its best to slime him in order to absolve Pete Domenici, a.k.a Saint Pete, it will be interesting to see if they continue their series of attack "articles" on "the real issues that lead to his firing".

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Beware the Marty Party!

The Bernalillo County Ward elections have occurred. One thing is clear, Robert Aragon, a candidate for Chair of the Bernalillo Democratic Party, is part of Mayor Marty's team. I got a personal taste of how Marty & Company (MartCo) works last Thursday night and needless to say they wouldn't have bothered grabbing Ward and Precinct chairs and the votes that come with them if they didn't see value in electing Aragon. Is the plan to turn us into the Marty Party?

So, we are now headed to the the County Convention next month where Aragon has a good chance of getting elected. Once enthroned we will see what he does. One thing you can bet is that Diane & Company will be watching his every move.

To me the bigger issue is how this sets the Democratic Party up for a two year grudge match between Diane and Mary with the prize being the Gov's Office and the State Party structure as its initial battle field. The race for Bernalillo County Chair is Marty's first strike. Diane will respond.

Lots are at stake in the next Governor's race - something often forgotten, especially by the Democrats, is the 2010 census. As a result of those numbers the State Legislature will start fighting about the shape of Congressional districts around 2012. Its critical that the next Governor be a Democrat to make sure that CD1 doesn't continue to favor the Republicans.

If last Thursday night was any indication, the Diane - Marty war is already going strong.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Yes, Novell is a Linux Company!

From LinuxToday:
March 18, 2007
BrainShare: The Heart of Novell

For the first time, I decided to attend Novell's BrainShare conference. In the past I have been resistant to attending single-vendor sponsored shows, because once you attend one, you'd better get yourself to others, if only to avoid bias. I was able to get clearance for both BrainShare and Red Hat's Summit in May, so I figured I'd achieved my balance.

The reason I wanted to attend BrainShare this year, specifically, was to find out for myself if Novell was really a Linux company, or if they were just talking the talk.

Imagine my complete and utter surprise when I discovered I didn't need to actually attend the show to learn the answer.

It happened like this: the flight to Salt Lake City this afternoon was full--very--and so there were three of us in our little row, me on the aisle, a gentleman from Maryland in the middle, and a lady from Utah at the window. Seasoned travelers will know that in this situation, it's going to either be hours of uncomfortable silence, or some conversation to pass the time.

The lady at the window was one of those chatty folks, so it quickly went that way for my row-mates. But though I tried to add something to their conversation, it quickly seemed that they were not interested in talking to me. I didn't really take this personally, since I was looking forward to reading a book I'd brought and listening to a new U2 CD my kids gave me.

During the course of the flight, I picked up snippets of their conversation and learned he was a networking engineer also coming to BrainShare. He explained to the woman what he did--deployed enterprise desktops for corporations. If he mentioned "Linux," I didn't hear him over the music and the noise of the plane.

I meant to ask him during the flight about his work as a Novell vendor, but there was never an opening. (They talked a lot.)

Finally, the plane landed, and as I was starting to get my things gathered, the young man reached into this laptop bag and pulled out an Novell Linux Desktop CD. As he gave it to her, he explained what it was and why it might help her in running her small business. Just like that.

It wasn't a planned thing, just a spontaneous moment. He didn't know who I was, because I'd never really gotten a chance to input anything to their chat. He just did it.

And then I was left thinking; if this is an independent contractor who works with Novell, and he's handing out Linux CDs to people on planes, then maybe there is something Novell is doing as a culture to foster this kind of spontaneous outreach. Maybe Novell is indeed a Linux company at its heart.

Not all of my questions were answered, but that was a big one I wanted settled for my own sake. I didn'y even have to get off the plane.

Tomorrow: Bruce Perens vs. Ron Hovsepian in a cage match battle royale! Or, maybe just jousting press conferences.

I've been working with Novell for about 2 years now and know that Novell is indeed a Linux Company. They are risking all on Linux - if Suse & Linux prospers they will survive - if it fails they are toast.

If I call Novell and tell 'em I'm headed to a meeting and want to hand out some DVD's of SLES10 and SLED10 they will overnight me dozens of nicely packaged sets just to spread the news. If I'm teaching a Unix/Linux class their only question is how many sets do I need.

Watch what Novell does, talk to its people and you will find that they are indeed a Linux Company and in my humble opinion, they are The Premier Linux Company on the planet today.

By-the-by, when you go to the Red Hat show - ask 'em why you can't easily download iso's of RHEL5 or even RHEL4 from their site. Its dead easy to get iso's from Novell but try and get them from Red Hat. Prepare to have a chat with a sales being that wants to know what you are up to!

I have always thought one aspect of being a Linux Company is that you are open - open to ideas, open to letting folks know what you are doing. open to supporting universal standards, and open to giving back to the broader Linux community. Compare Novell to Red Hat and you may ask yourself a new question - is Red Hat a Linux Company?

The Journal - another hit piece on Iglesias

Today the Journal published another piece in its character assignation series on David Iglesias. This time the henchman was Mike Gallagher and title was "Iglesias' Tenure A Low-Key Affair".

Not much else to report - same tone, same anonymous sources, same intent.

Oh yes, on its OP-ED page another installment in the series titled "Iglesias Earned His Firing".

Vote! Heather & Pete vs. Iglesias

Heath Haussamen has a poll on his blog, Heath Haussamen on New Mexico Politics titled:
Did Domenici and Wilson act unethically during phone calls to former U.S. Attorney David Iglesias last year?

So far the results are:
Haussamen poll

Wonder what the Journal's editorial board would think about this.........

Friday, March 16, 2007

Yet another conspiracy theory re: Novell's deal with Micro$oft

I hate Micro$oft as much as anybody but when will this nonsense stop.

The latest installment just arrived in Free Software Magazine:

Will Microsoft buy Novell?

The title says it all - if you've got some time to waste on a mix of supposition and silly paranoia check it out.

Update: I heard this one before!

Thursday, March 15, 2007

The Journal and Coleman - at it again!

The article by Michael Coleman on the front page of this morning's Albuquerque Journal is a brilliant piece of political propaganda - the title and first paragraph are especially amazing. Frankly, I didn't think that he or the Journal were this capable but I guess when it comes to the defense of Saint Pete the Perfection new levels of creativity are called for and achieved!

With all the trash that is flying because of the firing on the Federal Prosecutors and all the new bits of info that have been added by the release of boxes of White House emails this is what Coleman centers on:
Gripes About Iglesias Not New - E-Mails Show Long History of Complaints.

WASHINGTON - "Newly disclosed e-mails show complaints from New Mexico Republicans about David Iglesias were long-standing and involved issues other than prosecuting public corruption cases that could embarrass Democrats."

There you have it - Saint Pete didn't do anything wrong. Pajama Pete's call was not about politics! It was not political! Hear them - it was not political! Iglesias was a disaster long before Pete made his saintly and widely misinterpreted call. The Publicans had been yelling about him for years because somebody said somewhere that an incident of voter fraud may have occurred but nobody really can remember when or where it was but no matter it did occur because the Republicans said so and dammit that lazy, useless Iglesias didn't put even one Democrat in jail because of it!

Have no doubt - the Journal is working hard to clear Pete's reputation and lay blame squarely on the real villain of the story - David Iglesias!

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Has Heather soiled Saint Pete's gown?

After looking at what passes for journalism in the Abq. Journal a thread has emerged on Saint Pete and his unfortunate call to Iglesias - it appears that the Journal's game is to shift blame from Pete to whoever. Certainly their early choice is Iglesias but that may not be enough. Who will the spot lifter be - Heather or Allen Weh? Certainly Heather drug Domenici into this and Weh opened his mouth and drug Carl Rove into it - so both are viable candidates. It will be interesting to see if the Journal's view of Heather changes. They have had such a love affair with her for so long - breaking up could be hard to do!

The DOJ - just another part of Rove's operation

It appears that one news agency is still alive and kicking and actually trying to run down the story behind the whole Federal Prosecutor mess - certainly we know the Albuquerque Journal won't bother!

From McClatchy via Talking Points Memo we get this rare moment of candor from the head of NM's Republican Party, Alan Weh:

In an interview Saturday with McClatchy Newspapers, Allen Weh, the party chairman, said he complained in 2005 about then-U.S. Attorney David Iglesias to a White House liaison who worked for Rove and asked that he be removed. Weh said he followed up with Rove personally in late 2006 during a visit to the White House.

"Is anything ever going to happen to that guy?" Weh said he asked Rove at a White House holiday event that month.

"He's gone," Rove said, according to Weh.

"I probably said something close to 'Hallelujah,'" said Weh.

Lovely, now not only do we have both a Senator and Member of the House of Representatives putting their thumb on Iglesias but the head of the Republican Party in the State imploring Rove to do a hatchet job on the guy. Talk about piling on!

Guess Weh though he was helping out the Pajama Guy and Leather Heather by taking the fall for them but it only showed how the Department of Justice is now simply a subsidiary of the Republican Party. The fact that Weh said this to a reporter just serves to show how sick things are in the Bush Administration and the Republican Party. Instead of knowing it was wrong it was just business as usual for Weh.

Monday, March 05, 2007

More incredible work from Josh at Talking Points Memo........

"Rep. Heather Wilson (R-NM) now says that in response to complaints from constituents about US Attorney Iglesias's slow rate of indictments on corruption investigations, she called him two weeks before election day to allow him to clear his name. (my emphasis!)

I'm left speechless with Heather's concern for Dave Iglesias's well being -

This is classic Heather, covering her nefarious acts with her own sticky, itchy sweet form of slime - I'm sure the Journal ate it up, they always do! She's a filthy witch to the core, no ethics, no honesty, no human decency - only the perennial pursuit of power wrapped in a transparent lie.

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Iglesias for Congress!

On the front page of the Journal we were greeted this morning with the Saint Pete's apology. Of course he assured us that he wasn't trying to influence the course of the investigation - just gathering some information. And of course that had NOTHING to do with him wanting Justice to fire Iglesias. As per normal, the servile sycophants at the Journal bought it all hook, line, and sinker -

The whole mess continues to bubble in the press and on liberal and progressive blogs all over the place so who knows where it goes next. Unfortunately this won't change Saint Pete's re-election prospects - he will be re-elected, pj's and all. After all he already has the vote of his worship, the Mayor - Marty the First.

Next up is soon to be Ex Federal Attorney David Iglesias. He testifies Tuesday before Congress. Hopefully that will provide some entertainment next week.

Lets all hope that Iglesias does a hatchet job on Heather when he goes before Congress, comes back to Albuquerque, changes parties and announces his run for Congress.

Now that's a race I could get behind!

Saturday Night play -

For a while I've been wanting a Perl program to demonstrate some basic issues of programming to students. While a bit more advanced than I would like this program does several things -

- it takes user input, in this case a system name, then runs an external program to convert that data into a real ip number
- it parses the number into 4 separate values and stashes each into an array
- it extracts these values from an array and uses a recursive function to convert them from a decimal to a binary number
- it checks that binary number and pads leading zeros to make it 8 bits long
- finally, it appends all the 8 bit numbers together to make a 32 bit sequence that represents the ip number in binary form
(requires dig so probably requires Linux).....
#!/usr/bin/perl -w
# Author: Michael
# March 3, 2007
# A program that demo's conversion of an ip number to
# a binary number
# Recursion code from:
# Higher Order Perl
# by Mark Jason Dominus
# 2005, Elsevier, Inc.
# usage:
# ./ internet_sys_name
# i.e. -- ./

# stash the number of arguments
# $#ARGV is ARGC in C, C++ land
$argNumber = $#ARGV + 1;

sub usageStatement {
print "\nUsage: internet_sys_name\n\n";

# test for presence of input
if($argNumber != 1) {

# a recursive function to convert an integer value
# to a binary number
sub binary {
# set input value to $n, keep it local
my ($n) = @_;

# check for base case, if found end recursion
return $n if $n == 0 || $n == 1;

# divide val by 2, set result to $k
my $k = int($n/2);
# divide val by 2, save modulus to $b
my $b = $n % 2;

# recurse $k
my $E = binary($k);

# as recursion unwinds build binary value
return $E . $b;

# a function to pad zero's on a binary number so that
# its standardized to 8 bits in length
sub bufferator {
my ($needZeros) = @_ ;

$blank = "";

while ( $needZeros ) {
$blank = $blank . 0;

return $blank;

# convert name to ip number
$ipNumber = `dig +short $ARGV[0]`;

# slit ip number into an array of numbers minus the .'s
@ipSegments = split(/\./, $ipNumber);

# setup variables to process the array of segments & store results
$i = 0;
$outBinPattern = "";

while ( $i < 4 ) {
# get bit pattern for each 8 bit segment
$binValue = &binary($ipSegments[$i]);

$binLength = length($binValue);

if ( $binLength < 8 ) {
$binLength = 8 - $binLength;

$buffZeros = &bufferator($binLength);

$binValue = $buffZeros . $binValue;

$outBinPattern = $outBinPattern . $binValue;


print "$outBinPattern\n";

Saturday, March 03, 2007

Who, oh who, will run against Heather next time?

In retrospect Patsy Madrid must of scared Heather even more than I thought. Heather normally is the King of the cool, calm, and collected set. She's smart and has her act down to a tee. She's created the image that's surrounds her and is simply brilliant at playing the part. Doesn't matter that its all fake - she knows her character and acts the role perfectly.

Nothing besides simple fear could of gotten her to do something as stupid as calling a Fed Attorney and pushing him to indict some Dems to help her chances at getting re-elected.

So, while fighting an inner ear infection and allergies, I've been entertained watching the events of the last week at blogs like Talking Points Memo and New Mexico Politics with Joe M.. A sad whiff of reality arrived courtesy of Joe Monahan when I read about the two Dems "we" should be pinning our hopes on to exploit Heather's current woes. Please note I actually like both guys - Al Park and Jerry Ortiz y Pino. Politically I agree with much of what Jerry has done but to put it simply neither of 'em has a chance in hell of beating Heather. Al Park simply has no track record and Jerry's record will cause a good chunk of the district to flip out. His bill calling for Bush's impeachment will make even somebody who detests Bush, about 50% of the population these days, queasy. He's just too liberal for the Independents that decide the election in this district. Re: Al - Heather will dance all over him.

Sure, either of these guys can come up with a whole range of ads showing Heather for who she is but remember she still wins elections even with her negatives floating in the stratosphere.

Sad to say but neither of 'em have a chance to beat Heather. Now it appears that a posting has shown up on one of the big blogs, MyDD (you can see my response there) talking about Heather's new found vulnerability and how the Dems are ready to exploit it - well dream on.

We need another candidate!