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November 14, 2008 04:21 PM UTC

Open Line Friday!

  • by: Colorado Pols

“Those of us who were sounding those warning bells have been vindicated as right all those many months ago. We got exactly what we feared we were going to get. We got the exact campaign, we got the exact result, we got everything we knew would happen, should the party nominate Senator McCain. Look, there were a lot of people talking about voting for Hillary!”

–Rush Limbaugh


86 thoughts on “Open Line Friday!

  1. from the Denver Post

    The proposal:

    Of the nearly $5 million available for economic development before 2010, Ritter proposed using about $2.5 million for an “access to capital” program for small businesses. He said the money might be put into a loan program.

    The effect:

    “For $2.5 million, that’s like one company, possibly,” said Tapia, who owns an engineering business. “We have bridges that are falling apart, we have roads that need to be repaired, people on the disability waiting lists.

    The plan:

    Don Elliman, executive director of the Colorado Office of Economic Development, admitted officials didn’t have specific details on how the money might be spent. He said administration officials needed several weeks to come up with more information but were looking at a program to educate small businesses on how to access more capital, such as via government programs.

    I’ve goota say, as a small business CEO, I don’t see how this does squat for anyone. And for many small businesses, we don’t need access to capital – we need customers. The best thing the state can do for business is get moving on capital improvements.

      1. The beauty of capital improvements is it’s money spent here and it’s also an investment that pays off in the future as it makes our economy more competitive. So we get the injection of dollars into the economy, and we get a better infrastructure.

        And then those dollars spent go to paychecks of people who then go out and spend it. That money filters out through the economy, causing additional purchases (hopefully including better reporting software to track all that business).

        1. It’s been said that the Grand Coulee dam won WWII because of the power generated to make aluminum.  Now, there’s an investment, winning WWII.

          Investing in infrastructure is a variant of the old teaching a man to fish instead of giving him a fish.  

          Private enterprise cannot make these infrastructure improvements.  

        2. Just how many state employees have we added in the last 2 years? … thousands?

          So we piss away money on new state workers (and the LT additional costs of their PERA, healthcare, etc….) in a declining economy vs spending the money on upgrading road safety?

          Surely putting a few engineers, road graders, road workers and associated raw materials inputs to work delivers a better bang for the buck.

              1. Even TABOR recognized that government had to grow to keep up with population, at the least.

                And if 51% of Coloradans want a tax increase to fund a more effective state government,  why not?  It’s called democracy!

                1. Why increase taxes? Why not take a small haircut, say $70 million and roll the savings into the program that will fund a more effective government. Then once the effectiveness takes place we’ll have more savings to re-distribute for more effectiveness or greater end user services (i.e. bigger treasury handouts to unwed mothers). Thus a cycle of achievement is created without a tax increase. It’s called sound fiscal management of the democracy!

                  Don’t ya think the nation would be better off investing in a manufacturing business that can expand, create a job, deliver a material product and grow payroll taxes to cover underfunded PERA and health care bennies?

                  1. I think the government would be doing a great disservice to the contracts it signed with its workers if it did that.

                    I seem to recall a certain Representative that Republicans recently ousted had helped to implement more auditing and efficiency measures for the state.  There just isn’t a lot to squeeze any more.  Colorado already runs way past “lean” on the efficiency mixture.

                    1. Obviously the Gov found $70 some million for a rainy day fund. I say that day is here.

                      It is time to fund Parsign’s “effective state government” initiative and use the $70 million to bring “effective state government” now.

                      This will create a cycle of success resulting in savings that one day will allow for a great many new social programs to care for citizens with mental  disabilities [not by choice] and un-wed parents who lack even a GED [by choice failures at life destined for counter work at Wendys]. All without new taxes!

                      As for the transportation or health care crisis I say the Gov must reachout to the Feds with a demand for $1-4 billion bailout. Obama has said those making below $200-250k will have a tax cut. I am just fine with those making more to foot the bill for my better roads or government subsidized health care!

                      I stand here awaiting my handout from the U.S. Treasury and I am even willing to let the Gov take a 10% administration fee for managing Colorado’s windfall bailout.

                    2. I have to admit, I didn’t understand the new budget very well.  At one point he was talking about robust growth in the Colorado economy, perhaps 6%.  The next he’s talking about slashing transportation and creating a $70m “rainy day fund” that might be needed this coming year if the economic downturn hits the state.

                      I understand the latter, was somewhat surprised at the former, and completely confused about the stuff in the middle.

                      I understand the rainy day fund if they’re forecasting rain in the near future – and if I were looking at this economy, “stormy weather” would be playing in the background of my weather forecast…  Cut pretty darned important funds now in order to save critical funds in the near future, sounds good to me.

                      Please help explain if I’ve got it wrong.  I don’t think the $70m was an indicator that we’re flush with cash.

                    3. Ritter will have a difficult time securing  federal bailout dollars or a citizen approved tax hike.

                      Thanks for helping me work that out.

                  2. built great infrastructure which pays huge dividends in productivity and competitiveness, and built the American Middle Class.  Which Reagan started the dissolution of.

                    Use the money to rebuild our deteriorating highways, airports, bridges, the electrical grid.  Prosperity follows.  

      2. I am surprised that the Governor and Denver Chamber have not supported a bailout of Colorados’ CDOT/RTD and their problems.

        Having delivered Colorado for Obama, Udall, Markey, and my anti-favorite the Unions Bosses, I would expect them to be strongly pushing for Federal Bailout dollars (healthcare and transportation).

        Why should the Big 3 Automakers get anything? What did they deliver … nada … besides a corrupt system of corporate interests and union bosses that developed highly polluting vehicles.

        I say let them (equity/bond holders) fail. Let the UAW and/or private investors pick through the remnants in U. S. Bankruptcy Court. Let the real nature of the free markets take their course.

        1. The problem is that if you leave the market totally alone, then when a depression hits, they hit more often, are more serious, and last a lot longer. Yes it sucks to bail some of these bozos out, but it’s in our own self-interest to do so.

          1. at squarestate too, but I think it’s apropos:

            Will the auto bailout help the dealers who can’t give away cars because nobody can get a loan? If not, I think it’s a terrible idea.

            Detroit has been intellectually bankrupt for years. These are the same people who said “Americans want a big SUV, they don’t care about fuel economy.” Look where we are now: the Japanese are way ahead of us in fuel efficiency, and that’s why people here buy their automobiles.

            They balked on every effort that the government, and consumers, wanted them to make to both increase fuel economy and help end our dependence on oil. Look what happened to the electric car.

            I feel for the UAW, and all the other working people who get their livelihoods in the auto manufacturing business. They don’t deserve to be treated the way they are, but they are getting the shaft.

            Detroit has been headed this way for years, and until the root cause of this crisis–the tightening of credit markets to the point where consumers can’t qualify for loans–is addressed, then throwing a huge check to Detroit isn’t going to help anything. It will only further encourage their reluctance to change their business to adapt to the 21st century.

            1. The recent “deal” that the corporate goons cut with the UAW bosses laid-off tons of benefit obligation on UAW in exchange for a big fat cash payment. [does this concept ring a bell … Denver Chamber, Colorado Concern Political Bosses, Protect Colorados Future and the UFCW  buying off ballot box measures]

              Now these goons want us to bailout their share owners, I think not! It is time to let the free markets take their natural course.

              1. “It is time to let the free markets take their natural course”

                How ironic that you are touting the problem that has caused our current economic meltdown as the solution !

                1. They should have all crashed and burned. There are a handful of banks that did not touch these crappy bundles of home mortgages. They had standards and protected their investors money. Pigs get fat, hogs get slaughtered.

                  Good banks, Buffett, Soros and other investors would have stood ready to pickup the remnants and recapitalize business models with a basis for existence.

                  Sometimes, you have to thin the herd. Firms like Wachovia and Bear Sterns were run by individuals [goons] that failed to make proper decisions. Usually when that happens you get fired, go the the penalty box, loose your head, etc…  

                  1. I don’t disagree at all with allowing the herd to thin and for other well capitalized investors to come in and pick up the pieces.  

                    I just think someone should be watching the henhouse from time to time to keep this shit (mortgage backed securities) from happening in the first place.

                2. ..without job growth [product making jobs] in America you create limited economic value. Its not like those service jobs can help improve the balance of trade. Neither the CFA or Wendy’s counter staff in Denver serve the London market.

  2. in this article they are trash talking Ritter’s Jobs Cabinet and they conclude with this:

    So let’s imagine you desperately need a job. What to do? You basically have two options:

    1) You count on Bill Ritter to spend taxpayer money on a fancy “Jobs Cabinet” – a bureaucracy that then spends more money to conduct a three-month study involving lengthy round-table discussions with various business leaders, educators, and state officials – all for the purpose of establishing a collaborative network of ideas and innovative methods that ultimately may improve the process of connecting employer with potential employee.


    2) You grab a newspaper and read the “Help Wanted” ads.

    Ok, Ritter may be of no help. So then you go to CraigsList, Monster, & The Ladders. You don’t go to the newspaper because no one advertizes jobs there. Whoever wrote this apparently has not had to hire someone or look for a job in quite some time.

        1. If you are comparing unions and private corporations as equivalents then we must get Coors some inside dealt sole source government contracts too; we can call them collective manufacturing deals. Further, we need to run a ballot measure that brings back corporate unions … you know forced housing, forced purchases from the company store, forced health care, or at least forced corporate PAC membership.

          Seriously, I believe the Duran children and Coors hold professional degrees that should keep them from having to apply for midnight shifts at America’s favorite unhealthy dining establishments.

          Remember, CoorsTec doesn’t force customers to buy from them, however, UFCW revenues come via forced unionism and forced union dues.

  3. Remember all the discussion as to if Jared was buying his seat. Well according to Swing State Project the answer is no:

    One other lesson from this story: self-funding doesn’t work. 49 Congressional candidates spend $500,000 of their own money, and of them, only 6 House candidates and 1 Senate candidate won. Perhaps the saddest case of this was Sandy Treadwell, who ran against Kirsten Gillibrand in NY-20. Treadwell poured in at least $5.9 million of his own money. (Gillibrand spent $3.6 million, but only $250 of that was her own money.) The return on Treadwell’s investment: priceless. If by ‘priceless,’ you mean losing to Gillibrand by a 23-point margin.

    1. doesn’t mean it can’t be done.

      Take away Polis’ money, put him on an equal playing field, and he doesn’t win the primary election. That means his money bought him that extra margin.

      Can you buy an election if nobody likes you? Perhaps not, but you can buy ten points in the polls, and that may get you close enough to win.

            1. The RNC outspend the McCain camp and evened up the gap somewhat.

              I don’t have a problem saying that Obama’s strong grassroots fundraising helped propel his campaign to victory.  Of course, having such a strong base of support contributing to you also translated to a strong grassroots-based ground team which had very little to do with money and a lot to do with enthusiasm.

                1. It’s just like base up economics. There are a lot more ordinary middle class people than gazillionaires.  If they all give you a little money you have a lot of money.  

                  Obama’s campaign was a triumph of base up over Republican trickle down. And yes Obama got big money, too.  He also won among people earning over 250K, the one’s who WILL pay more under his plan.  Apparently they agree we all do fine, including the rich, when the broad base does fine.  

                  If that broad base “bought” this election, great.  It’s about time.

            2. Surely, if Obama hadn’t outraised McCain, he wouldn’t have had a chance at winning. McCain was a beloved maverick media darling, while Obama was a black guy with a Muslim name.

              There is of course a difference between getting other people to give you money and giving yourself money. Usually the former happens because you already have strong support, while the latter helps you strengthen support that’s kind of weak.

    2. So many of these millionaire runs are against candidates who have a strong incumbent advantage.  Money can’t buy that much love…

      Money still funds your ground game, though.  If you can get the money from yourself, it answers a lot of questions for campaign organization.  If you’re a strong candidate in a competitive race, having your own cash is still a big advantage.

      1. I think that’s really what it comes down to: if you can self-fund you’re ahead of the game as far as affording the race, but it takes more than just money to win.

        It’s a lot easier to focus on the campaign framework when you don’t have to worry about where the cash for all the office space, telephone lines, and computers is going to come from.

      1. I’m sorry but even with 5 mil you would not have won – what matters more is party ID, ground game, endorsements from people that matter, etc. This focus on the money diverts people from the more critical items.

        I’ll agree that lots of dollars buys you an additional 2 – 5% and by that measure Jared “bought” his seat. But when it’s that close there are many things that made that final 2%.

        I’ve got a question, if back in early August JFG was offered to either have 3 million moved from Jared’s account to hers (and Jared could not self-fund again), or she got that commercial Pat Schroder cut for Jared cut for her instead – which of the two should she pick?

        1. The commercial was weak (and I like Pat Schroder).  You forget that many folks don’t know who Pat is–she’s been out of office for a long time.

          1. Pat Schroeder is an accomplished woman but her name means nothing to the vast majority of voters. A lot of us were just kids, or in high school, when she was last a prominent national politician. Many of us didn’t grow up out here either making her name ID that much less.  

        2. endorsements from people that matter,

          My opinion is that endorsements are essentially worthless for any office above the local or maybe state house level. Can anyone provide some data that demonstrates otherwise?

          We know what a field operation adds, we know what television advertisements can do – let’s see some data on endorsements.  

          1. I think that helped make some military folks and national security voters feel more comfortable about Obama. I don’t have any numbers to back that up, but based on conversations with people like that, I think Powell’s endorsdement delivered some votes to Obama.

            Of course, it didn’t do anything to way the dittoheads who thought it was just black men sticking together.

          2. of course there are exceptions, Powell is a good example of that.

            OTOH, consider Hilary endorsing Obama.  Some of her supporters were maybe swayed (how would you know?), but remember the map on how much more, or less, a county voted Dem?  Remember Arkansas?  Not only red, most of it deeply so.  What would that have looked like if she’d be in the general?  

            Ultimately I guess you never know which endorsements will help.  Probably best to get all you can, just in case.

      1. Could that be a misprint? That doesn’t make sense to me since in most states, Republicans lost major ground with African Americans and Hispanics.  

      2. so if you’re dealing with a relatively small subgroup, your margin of error can go up quite a lot. In a good poll, maybe you’d talk to 1000 people from Indiana. Margin of error about +-3.

        Maybe 10% of the Indiana population is black, and maybe you do a good job and make sure 100 of the people you interview are black, so your margin of error among black voters is at best about +-10.

        Now among black voters, the Republican vote is typically within the margin of error. So on the whole, I don’t think you can read anything at all into that +4. It’s pure noise.

  4. They may not be able to fight in combat situations, but Ann E. Dunwoody made history by becoming the first female four-star general:

    “I grew up in a family that didn’t know what glass ceilings were,” she said. “This nomination only reaffirms what I have known to be true about the military throughout my career – that the doors continue to open for men and women in uniform.”

    She also told an internal Army publication, “While I may be the first, I know I won’t be the last.”

    1. One important thing that the DoD has done a good job hiding is the amount of women in combat in Iraq. The shell game is that they are not “assigned” to infantry or other ground units, but are “attached” from their original support units.

      The Program is called Lioness. And it has put women who signed up to be mechanics and medics directly into the middle of urban warfare in Iraq.

      The DAV and PBS sponsored an independent movie called “Lioness” which examines the lives of 5 women who were called into this program. It’s on KRMA 6 on Saturday at 11pm.

      I ask everyone to watch – but  probably not that night. It’s like taking a date to United 93.  


    The two sources said Clinton was surprised to hear the rumors about the secretary of state position. The sources could not confirm that the two discussed the nation’s top diplomatic position or that it was offered.

    John Kerry and Bill Richardson are also rumored to be in the running.

  6. During the trial of fmr AL gov Don Siegelman

    Lots of crap in there, but this has to be my favorite:

    A key prosecution e-mail describes how jurors repeatedly contacted the government’s legal team during the trial to express, among other things, one juror’s romantic interest in a member of the prosecution team. “The jurors kept sending out messages” via U.S. marshals, the e-mail says, identifying a particular juror as “very interested” in a person who had sat at the prosecution table in court. The same juror was later described reaching out to members of the prosecution team for personal advice about her career and educational plans. Conyers commented that the “risk of [jury] bias … is obvious”.

    1. What is being demonstrated by Nebraska’s safe haven law and all those older kids being dropped off by parents is the desperation of those parents. As our health care system has collapsed parents have been unable to get mental health services for themselves and the kids.  

  7. I guess it’s not just the Kos-acks

       I’m one who does not feel that somebody should be rewarded with a major chairmanship after doing what he did. … I felt that some of the attacks that he was involved in against Sen. Obama, whom I did support – I was one of the first in the Congress to support him – I thought they went way beyond the pale. I thought that they were not fair. I thought they were not legitimate. I thought that they perpetuated some of these horrible myths that were being run about Sen. Obama.

       I would feel that, had I done something similar, I would not be chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee in the next Congress.

    Accountability for your words and actions? In Washington? Why that’s sacrilege Senator Leahy.  

  8. Everyone is on Senator Salazar about whether or not he will vote for Lieberman to retain his Committee Chair.

    Will Rep. DeGette support the conservative John Dingell or the liberal HenryWaxman for Chair of the Energy and Commerce Committee?

    I wonder why DailyKos has not taken a stance on this important House vote?

    1. So she may.  However, if she is contemplating her own leadership election (whatever it may turn out to be) she needs to be careful about getting involved in other people’s political battles.

    2. There was actually a user-submitted diary on Dingell over at The Big Orange today, but a good reason for questioning…

      The Dem Caucus policy is to rotate people through the chairs after X years; Dingell’s time is up and he wants an extra term.

      Waxman would be a 100% shift in policy for the committee, which has been a bit protective (read: coddling) of the American auto industry under Dingell.  I’m not sure either is “right” for that particular chair.

  9. So the conservatives on Colorado Inside Out (Chan. 12) are harping on Roosevelt being bad for the economy. Yeah. Let me know how that works out for bringing around voters.

      1. Begich was supposed to get landslide numbers, and Berkowitz was supposed to pull ahead of Young.

        Even if Begich ends up winning (as appears likely), the numbers in Alaska are still fishy. It’s the only state where all polls were WAY off, and I’d really like to hear an explanation after it’s all over.

        1. but how do you account for anemic turn-out with their own spectacularly high favorable Governor on the ticket?  

          I could understand if it was a matter of people figuring the whole thing was over long before election day was over, what with their time zone situation, but aren’t they a state with really high mail-in voting which is all over before election day?  

          Is it that Alaskans are just as loony as their selection of a Sarah Palin for Governor and the strong showing of a convicted felon for Senator leads one to believe they are?  

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