Posts tagged with Dist

The Clouse-Mandell Summit

Lawrence-Douglas County Firefighter Daniel Clouse has been cited for battery after an argument with Lawrence resident Bob Mandell.

In short, Daniel Clouse was offended that Bob Mandell did not remove his hat during the band's playing of the National Anthem. Clouse told Mandell of the offense and informed him of protocol. Mandell agreed and stated that he had simply forgot. A bystander told Clouse that "now is not the time or place," and Clouse went back to his seat.

The rub comes in the rub. There is a discrepency in the accounts of how Clouse obtained the attention of Mandell. Clouse claims that he touched Mandell on the shoulder. Mandell claims that Clouse applied excessive force to Mandell's neck; thus, the charge of battery.

Now the County will suffer the cost. This has a good chance of going to trial. Clouse will present several witnesses stating that there was no battery; simply a touch to get attention. Mandell will present witnesses buttressing his claim of painful pressure. Regardless of who wins in court; all participants will be losers - and will appear as such.

Daniel Clouse, in this action you come off as a bully. Bob Mandell, you come off as a tattle-tale.

Mr. Mandell and Mr. Clouse, please save the City and County the cost of a frivolous trial. This is a moment for a Beer Summit. Both of you, please, man-up and work this out - outside of the courtroom.

Original Photo: Souza/White House; Editing: Did I Say That

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Obama’s Nation - How You Doin’?

Political discourse is filled with hypotheses, hyperbole, and hyper activity. The Radical Right Wingers, the Loony Left, and the Mediocre Moderates can't seem to agree on anything. President Barack Obama has been described as the Messiah, the Anti-Christ, and most everything in between. Citations proving a person's opinion can range from fact to fiction, from historical to hysterical.

This blog does not seek to do any of that. Rather, it is in the hunt for anecdotal evidence of the effects of the Obama administration and policies. In addition, for the purpose of this forum, any legislation, regulations, appointments, etc. that have occurred since the inauguration of President Obama is acceptable.

How has the election of President Obama, the 111th Congress, and the Senate affected you and yours? Specifically, what policy, activity, action, inaction, decision, decree, law, or regulation has had, or will have, an effect on you, your family, your relatives, or your friends. For the purpose of this discussion, let's limit claims to those with which you are personally connected.

I'll start.

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, also commonly know as ObamaCare, will have a negative effect on my income and ability to purchase medications. The act will eliminate over the counter drugs as a qualified expense of the Health Spending Account.

On the positive side, I know several gun dealers that tell me gun and ammunition sales have been way up. They attribute this to the public perception of the Administration's view on gun laws.

My income is down. A few months after Obama assumed office, one of the contracts that my part-time employer had was canceled; the business was cutting costs in anticipation of increased taxes and reduced profits.

The effect of economic policy has made a significant negative impact on my primary job. The stock market drop resulted in a 40% loss of equity in my employer's endowment fund. That, coupled with reduced income, resulted in a $5 million loss of income for 2010. The loss of income resulted in layoffs of 25% of our workforce.

It is your turn: How have you (or someone you have direct knowledge of) been affected? What is the net effect of the change of administration and congress on you?

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NAACP Hosts Shirley Sherrod Charade

The Shirley Sherrod saga has one common thread. Follow the thread as it weaves its way through the news cycles of the week.

I am probably going to regret writing this; yet, I think it needs to be done.

The 24-Hour News Cycle: Day One

Before reading any further you need to be aware of the fact that the word gullible has been written on the ceiling above your head. ↑↑ Now, remember your reaction to the previous sentence.

The story began July 19th when Andrew Breitbart published an online story with this edited video of the now much discussed Shirley Sherrod. The story quickly gathered steam as Ms. Sherrod resigned her USDA position at the request of Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack. Major news organizations were duped by the misleading video clip. Fox News led the charge and was quickly followed by CBS News, ABC News, and most of the others; some with glee, others with misgivings.

The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) jumped on board condemning her in a statement, wherein the NAACP President and CEO Ben Jealous calls her actions shameful. It appears that news outlets, as well as the NAACP, has scrubbed their websites of the original NAACP statement.

The first 24 hour news cycle has ended; cue day two.

The 24-Hour News Cycle: Day Two

News of the full 43 minute video makes the rounds when the NAACP posts the video on YouTube. The NAACP made a Second Statement On The Resignation of Shirley Sherrod wherein they issue an apology for condemning Ms. Sherrod. Further, the organization proclaims, “...we have come to the conclusion we were snookered by Fox News and Tea Party Activist Andrew Breitbart...” The Secretary of Agricultural announces that he will review the resignation of Sherrod.

The 24-Hour News Cycle: Day Three

Secretary of Agricultural Vilsack has watched the full video and offers Sherrod an apology and a 'unique' position in the USDA.

The 24-Hour News Cycle: Day Four

Not one to be left out of the limelight, let alone four 24-hour news cycles, President Obama apologizes to Sherrod . Sherrod spent the rest of the day as a reality star on talk shows.

The 72-Hour News Cycle: The Long Weekend

The weekend, which for news cycles seems to begin on Fridays, saw the name game, the blame game and the same game on every news outlet, every news show. Depending on the commentator's personal take on the story one of these three scenario made the circuit. Regardless of the talk show game these were the central players: Sherrod – the non-racist racist, Breitbart – the bamboozled blogger, Jealous – the snookered chief, Vilsack – the turnaround terminator, and Obama – the apologist in chief.


In less than 72 hours Shirley Sherrod went from unknown to overblown, from recently hired to just fired, and finally from just fired to preferred re-hire. The full video of Sherrod's speech makes it very clear that she was not promoting racism, rather she was presenting an account of an incident that changed her own ability to act in a racist way. That is not to say that some of Sherrod's comments are not of concern to conservatives; however, racism should not be one of those concerns.

The Contiguous Thread

There is one point in this sordid story that has failed to make the news. Perhaps it is a non-issue; yet, it seems pertinent as it is the common denominator. Let's review.

Ms. Sherrod, believed to be a member of the NAACP, gave a 43 minute speech at the NAACP Freedom Fund Banquet. The NAACP contracted for the speech to be video recorded by a production company. The video is apparently the property of the NAACP. A clip that was edited by the production company was posted in a story at and the “fire” storm began and ended within 48 hours. Throughout this story there is one common denominator, one contiguous thread: the NAACP. It was an NAACP banquet, an NAACP speaker, an NAACP video, an NAACP condemnation, and an NAACP reconciliation.

Finally, we are to believe that the NAACP, including its highest officials, was snookered by an NAACP video.

Quick – the word gullible has been written on the ceiling above your head. ↑↑ Oh, you have met my grandfather – the one who always said, “Fool me once shame on you. Fool me twice shame on me!”

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The New Blogs - The First One

New Blog Format 07/22/2010

Before someone else makes the comment: Nothing to see here. This is just my first blog on the new system. I am experimenting. You are welcome to watch and comment.

The new system is sending an email to me every time someone comments on one of my blogs. That will sell some Sunflower Bandwidth. If you have not looked yet this can now be set using "inbox and settings" from the drop down menu of your user name.

Look up. ↑↑ We can change the name of our blog now, not just the entry's name.
Look up. ↑↑ We can add a header picture that appears on each blog entry. Click on "your blog" and "edit settings." Near the bottom of the page you can add a header picture using the browse feature; don't forget to save.

Does HTML code
work? Yes! It does!

My avatar - Supersized!

My avatar - Super-duper-sized!


My avatar on drugs! Or is that breakfast?

This is now obsolete:

Okay, I need to fix that so it does not navigate away; rather let's have it open in a new window: How to Create a LJW Blog - A Beginner's Guide

Blogging Shortcuts - DIST's Cheat Sheet is not obsolete but will need revised.

Can I have a redirected (clickable) image? That may prove difficult. If anyone has a resolution, please let me know.

Okay, that is better!

That is all for now!

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Comments: Anonymous VS. Onymous

Anonymous versus onymous. That is the question.

Every so often, during the heat of the battle, a commenter will assert that comments should be onymous. Well, actually, what is usually said is that only “non-anonymous” commenters should be allowed to post. Or, as one anonymous commenter said, “Require user verification and end all anonymous posting. People should be accountable in real life for what they say.” No, I am not making it up – the quote is from an anonymous commenter. The presumption is that an onymous commenter will be more truthful and accurate, less antagonistic, more courteous, display better protocol; in short, be more responsible. A simple review of currently onymous commenters could dispell these myths.

I have commented both as an onymous and an anonymous commenter. Let’s take a look at my experience in both arenas.

Several years ago I had an onymous account. At the time I was posting to a variety of articles. However, I chose to use my name due to some specific articles; and, by doing so, made credible my knowledge regarding those articles. However, there were many other articles that I did not comment on due to their political nature or subject content. Commenting on them, at the time and with full disclosure of my name, would have been career suicide.

This January (having forgotten my old account information), I created an anonymous account. By far, it has been more fun to be anonymous. More importantly, it is much easier to post an opinion anonymously. An anonymous user has no risk of personal attacks and the possibility of personal consequences. Yes, I know, someone can make an ad hominem attack. Recently, a commenter said, “Tend to think you are just an un-educated HS dropout.” The comment is not only ignorant, it is irrelevant since the commenter does not know who I am. Moreover, my anonymity prevents the statement from being libel. In this case, anonymity protected both commenters.

Requiring commenters to use their “verified” real name would definitely change the forums. Overall, they would probably become more civil. It could cause a few to check their facts before commenting. Yet, that would not change the quality of comments by currently anonymous commenters who already check their facts. Nor, would it change the inaccuracy of currently verified commenters that do not check the facts.

It has been said that “Our character is what we do when we think no one is looking.” (H. Jackson Browne) “Character is doing the right thing when nobody is looking.” (J. C. Watts) I would urge the continuation of choosing between an anonymous or an onymous account. Moreover, I urge all commenters to display good character. Comment as if your character and name are on display; for, at the very least, you know who you are.