Friday, January 31, 2014

Obamanomics powering Brookings

The Peoples Republic of Brookings is not just home to South Dakota's most obese GOP blogger.

Brookings and Pierre could see, smell, feel and hear a hundred trains a day if Genesee and Wyoming gets its way.

Daktronics is going to the Stupid Bowl!
In 2013, the City of Brookings issued building permits for more than $58.6 million worth of construction – the second-highest one-year total in the city’s history. Construction of the huge Bel Brands USA cheese plant and the city-built wastewater digester helped push the value of commercial construction in the community to $35.6 million. [Brookings Register]
Just a reminder: former SOS Gant employee, Pat Powers fled his hometown, Pierre...at least twice...for the Peoples Republic of Brookings. Why? Because the state's capital is a shit hole.

Real estate values in Brookings County are rebounding from the horrors of the Bush era.
Some officials in the Dakotas are sparring good-naturedly over whether the North or the South is better off. North Dakota's energy boom has money flowing into the state coffers and the state economy. But South Dakota also has a strong economy and low unemployment, and some leaders there say that state has a better quality of life. [KFGO, Fargo, North Fucking Dakota]
The forecast for the week shows Mr. Kurtenbach will continue to freeze his fucking ass off so this interested party can keep working on his tan.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

SDDOT considering Brookings roundabouts

Rapid City is clearly struggling as it deals with some growing pains, too.

Robbinsdale is a post-war development built over a former dump on the banks of one tributary still trickling into Rapid Creek in the southeast part of town. Hundreds of modest, cookie-cutter houses that mostly support the medical industry have helped to bolster a strong real estate market despite an otherwise dismal attitude.

Four stop signs have governed traffic flow at the intersection of E St. Pat and Elm for decades.

It's usually ordered and cordial; but, in the era of heightened tensions being generated by that town's despair it's only a matter of time before firearms are drawn then people die in hails of gunfire after someone breaches some unwritten, finger-wave, right of way protocol.

Signals for the location have been proposed and rejected so it behooves this former resident to offer a thought experiment: how does funneling the flow into a traffic circle work for you guys?
Planned for 2015, the work will include widening a part of the roadway to include new turn lanes, but another proposed change nearer the Highway 14 – I-29 interchange would result in the creation of the very first roundabouts ever built on a state-controlled highway. [Brookings Register]


Obesity and mental illness are closely linked, especially in northern tier states like South Dakota.
In fact South Dakota is slipping. Just last year,the state ranked 19th but even that ranking would put us well behind most of our neighboring states. But why does South Dakota rank so low and what's being done to improve that rank? It's a test South Dakota is failing.--Jake Iverson, KSFY.

Habitat destruction, lapses in ethics, crime spikes, increased incarceration rates, more people infected with sexually transmitted diseases, the failure of prisons, human trafficking: all mark the terms of Republican governors in South Dakota. The state leads the nation in the growth of violent crime:
The study from the Pew Research Center’s Public Performance Project, released in late December, charts states by their relative increase or decrease in prison population and their increase or decrease in crime through 2012. What the study shows, according to Adam Gelb of the Pew Center, is that there is no direct link between locking up offenders and lowering crime rates. [John Hult, Sioux Falls Argus Leader]
More people in prison means more STDs are incubated:
Chlamydia was the most commonly reported sexually transmitted disease in South Dakota in 2012. That’s when the South Dakota Department of Health received 3,924 reports of the disease – the highest ever reported for one year in the state. In 2012, there were 707 reports of gonorrhea, with approximately 57 percent coming from adults between 15 and 24. Like chlamydia, the American Indian population was disproportionately affected. About 67 percent of reported cases came from American Indians. [Joel Ebert, Pierre Capital Journal]
From KELO teevee:
Nine men who were trying to solicit sex from teen girls were arrested during the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally in an undercover sting operation.
The common thread running through these findings? Institutionalized repression of American Indians in the state of South Dakota has led to despair, racism and the mass incarceration of non-violent offenders. And, since 2014 is an election year the GOP is pretending to give a shit. In other words: red state collapse on parade.

If it quacks like a duck....

Local control of school curricula is failing South Dakota students.

According to a new report from the Annie E. Casey Foundation reading scores for South Dakota’s fourth graders have gone down over the last ten years:
The results also show that lower-income students are falling further behind. Carole Cochran, director of South Dakota Kids Count, says these declining scores are not good news for students – in school or in life. The report says 68 percent of South Dakota fourth-graders were not proficient in reading in 2013, compared to 67 percent in 2003 – not a large change, but an indication of an overall lack of progress. The report also found the gap between lower-income and higher-income students continues to widen. That gap has grown by 20 percent since 2003. [WNAX Radio News]
A federal lawsuit accusing state and local officials of violating the rights of Native American parents and the tribes in child custody issues is headed for trial. The Rosebud Sioux Tribe, Oglala Sioux Tribe and three Native American parents filed have accused the Pennington County State’s Attorney, 7th Circuit Court and the Department of Social Services of violating the Indian Child Welfare Act and denying them due process when children are removed from their parents’ custody. [Andrea Cook, Rapid City Journal]


Now ten different people have visited ip in the last few hours with Kristi Noem divorce as search terms.

Put this movie in your Netflix queue and see if you recognize your country:

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Rounds/Daugaard cloud brings moderate into race


One can easily imagine that Benda-gate can't be the only scandal that looks suspicious to an accountant.
Every year in South Dakota the state department of social services removes over 740 American Indian children from their homes, tearing them away from their families, their tribes and their traditions. Since 2006 the Lakota People's Law Project has been waging a comprehensive campaign to stop the state's actions and win the return of these children.
Where will it end?


For the record: I called Rep. Wismer and asked her to run for governor long before last October. She told me that Cory Heidelberger at Madville Times is too radical. I told her that I am crazy.

It's likely no coincidence that Wismer's announcement comes as President Obama briefs the nation on the state of the union.

A legislature in session is not just an orgy of civic pride, religious zealotry, lobbyist parties and political aspirations:
According to Assistant U.S. Attorney for South Dakota, Kevin Koliner, Native women comprise 40 percent of sex trafficking victims in the state. Although some research links the recent oil boom to the emergence of a culture of misogyny in North Dakota, Native-women advocates maintain that the Great Plains of North and South Dakota present fertile ground for such a culture to take hold. They note, for instance, that South Dakota is considered by some men to be a sex tourism destination. “They come in the fall for pheasant hunting season and in summer for the Sturgis Bike Rally,” says Susan Omanson, executive director of BeFree58 Ministries, a non-profit in Sioux Falls serving survivors of sex trafficking. Sexual violence, including prostitution and trafficking, are firmly imbedded [sic] in the culture and economy of South Dakota. Although most hunters and bikers in the area are well-behaved, there is a dark side to both those activities, according to U. S. Attorney Brendan Johnson, who says, “Wherever you have a large gathering of men, you have a strong opportunity for prostitution and sex trafficking.” [Mary Annette Pember, Will Keystone XL Pipeline Pump Sexual Violence into South Dakota?]
Rich women have full reproductive freedom: South Dakota's repeated attempts to restrict access to medical care is not only mean-spirited, it's discriminatory anti-choice extremism.

Today in Communism: farm bill emerges from US House

Good job, Pete Seeger: the Communist Party USA now controls the US Congress. Common Core, dairies, livestock, cannabis, crop insurance and health care have all been transformed under your guidance.















Monday, January 27, 2014

Provisions in farm bill spell doom for wildlife




The Anthropocene has tripped a trophic cascade.

The Missoulian's Rob Chaney tells readers that the US Department of Agriculture's Wildlife Services wants the slaughter of bison and elk to be part of a farm bill:
A $35 million provision in the proposed federal farm bill has some wildlife advocates worried that cattle ranchers want to treat Montana’s elk the same as bison – as a disease threat to be managed. The problem, according to the federal Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS), is that the country around Yellowstone National Park harbors the last reservoir of brucellosis bacteria in the United States. Where this spills off the ranch and into the woods is APHIS’ stated commitment “to the successful elimination of brucellosis from bison and elk in the Yellowstone ecosystem.” Yellowstone National Park officials decided last week to kill a proposal to shoot bison with “bio-bullet” vaccine doses, saying it was cost-prohibitive and ineffective. [Rob Chaney, Farm bill provision worries wildlife advocates; brucellosis threat could lead to elk slaughter]

For the record: i called Susan Wismer and asked her to run for governor long before last October.


Moral hazard is the flip side of self-reliance.

Lawsuits are waiting to be filed by animal rights groups furious after livestock producers who allowed thousands of cattle, horses and sheep to perish in an October blizzard are getting relief from industry groups:
Silvia Christen, executive director of the South Dakota Stockgrowers Association, said she never dreamed the Rancher Relief Fund would top $4 million. [Deb Holland, Rapid City Journal]
Representative Kristi Noem (earth hater-SD) is facing fallout after her inability to produce a food/farm bill left many of her donors without a federal safety net.

President Obama: it's time to rewild the West: tear out the main stem dams, extend the CM Russell Wildlife Refuge to Oacoma, South Dakota along the Missouri River and to Yellowstone then to the Yukon.

It’s time for cougars to enjoy Endangered Species protection and for you, Mr. President, to dissolve the Black Hills National Forest; and, in cooperation with BIA Forestry and Wildfire Management, rename it Okawita Paha National Monument then make it part of the Greater Missouri Basin National Wildlife Refuge.









Sunday, January 26, 2014

USDA investigating rogue agency

Want to help Congress advance a farm bill? Urge your congressional delegation to defund Wildlife Services.

While failed red states like South Dakota, Wyoming, Montana and Idaho celebrate the extermination of apex predators for unsustainable short-term gain, Congress has chosen to allow horses to suffer and die in pens and on public ground.

From my inbox:
Dear Larry,
I have good news to share.
Last fall, our BioGems Defenders sent more than 90,000 messages to the Department of Agriculture’s Inspector General, demanding an investigation of “Wildlife Services” -- a rogue government agency that kills thousands of wild animals every year.
Our voices were heard!
The Inspector General’s office recently announced plans to conduct a long overdue investigation of this taxpayer-funded wildlife extermination program.
Now we need your help to make sure they follow through -- and end this secretive and senseless attack on wildlife for good!
Please send a message to USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack, urging him to support this investigation and help ensure an unflinching review of this disturbing agency’s “predator control methods.”
Wildlife Services -- part of the Department of Agriculture -- spends tens of millions of our tax dollars to “resolve conflicts” with wildlife -- by using poisons, traps, aerial gunning and other brutal methods.
As a result, more than 100,000 native carnivores -- including wolves, bobcats, foxes and black bears -- are being wiped out every year.
We may be at a turning point in this fight -- one that will determine whether the agency will carry on with its wildlife killing spree ... or if it will finally be held responsible and forced to stop.
Please call on Secretary Vilsack right now to support a far-reaching investigation into this vicious assault on our nation’s wildlife. The lives of hundreds of thousands of animals are depending on it.
Sincerely,
Frances Beinecke, President
Natural Resources Defense Council







Friday, January 24, 2014

South Dakota's video loottery more damaging than cannabis

Veterans are often shamed at clinics for seeking relief from the stress of their service: the US Department of Health and Human Services holds the patent for medical cannabis.

South Dakota's governor has proposed drug courts for persons caught possessing less-than-felonious amounts of cannabis: a measure clearly meant to reduce costs of law enforcement, overcrowding in state facilities, and the associated burdens to society. Legislation being prepared is apparently designed to address addiction but stigmatizes and shames persons for whom the use of cannabis should be as protected as it is for carrying a firearm. Red staters are those who can deny civil liberties to those “able-bodied” adults and uphold religious rights as absolutes.




Comes this from the editorial board of the Mitchell Daily Republic:
How strange it is to hear the state openly pine for a new generation of gamblers, hoping a younger group will take the place of older gamblers and help the state maintain fiscal viability. It’s no secret that state government is addicted to gambling, as are some of the state’s residents. Although some people do actually play simply as an occasional sport, others are entirely and thoroughly hooked, willing to wager their grocery money, rent or family fortunes. To hear that a state official is openly hoping to “get the younger folks involved” stunned us. What have we become? [Our view: What has lottery done to S. Dakota? Mitchell Daily Republic]


As a rule, religionists get pilloried at interested party.

South Dakota representative and Sioux Falls pastor, Steve Hickey has been sounding more like a progressive than a member of the earth hater party lately: he often posts tough questions for his dying red state at his blog, Voices Carry.

Hickey dislikes video loottery even as I hate it: it destroys through class warfare and discriminates against a single income base contributing to addiction, desperation and crime. Capitalism relies on coveting, after all.

Rep. Hickey laments the state's reliance on the dole from the feds as he fails to embrace the obvious revenue possibilities of the responsible cultivation and consumption of a relatively safe adults-only pastime, not to mention a renewable source of protein, and some likely pending industrial ag wet dream like Monsanto GMO cannabis.

Hardly surprisingly, the chemical toilet's worst legislators crushed a bill last session that would have allowed a medical necessity argument in cases where those in the law enforcement industries arrest chronic pain sufferers.

From the Sioux Falls Argus Leader's John Hult:
House bill 1227 would have provided for a medical necessity defense in marijuana cases. The House Health and Human Services committee voted 7-6 to defer the bill to the 41st legislative day, effectively defeating the measure.
These are the same people who believe the Second Amendment is more important than the First.

One opponent of the measure, Rep. Melissa Magstadt (earth hater-Watertown), is a nurse practitioner backed by Big Pharma. Rep. Hickey is in the pockets of christofascists.

No one believes that adolescents should have access to video loottery either yet they bet freely in gray markets all the time and engage in commerce just like adults do.

It is horrifying to watch this extremist red state legislature stop more laws seeking to control teen drinking while hiding its federal DUI failures and blowing its wad on cannabis interdiction.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Wildfire Today: 12 questions for Joe Lowe

Joe Lowe obviously believes that South Dakota's governor is not taking the ecological collapse taking place on the Black Hills seriously enough.
Wildland fire has been a major part of Bill Gabbert’s life for several decades. After growing up in the south, he migrated to southern California where he lived for 20 years, working as a wildland firefighter. Later he took his affinity for firefighting to Indiana and eventually the Black Hills of South Dakota where he was the Fire Management Officer for a group of seven national parks. Today he is the creator and owner of WildfireToday.com and Sagacity Wildfire Services and serves as an expert witness in wildland fire. 
Below we hear from Joe Lowe, a former Director of the South Dakota Division of Wildfire Suppression and Type 2 Incident Commander of Rocky Mountain Incident Management Team C. Currently Joe is the owner of the Reflections of South Dakota Gallery in Rapid City. [Wildfire Today]
Gabbert penned a vivid sketch of Democratic gubernatorial candidate, Joe Lowe. Here's a snip:
Governor Bill Janklow, always a hands-on governor, was bewildered and flabbergasted by the fires and in many ways interfered with the Incident Commanders (your’s truly included) which at times created serious safety problems. On the Jasper Fire the Type 1 Incident Commander placed a resource order for U.S. Marshals who stood by at the Incident Command Post ready to put a halt to any actions by state employees that put firefighters in danger, such as setting backfires and running dozers out ahead of the fire without coordinating with the Incident Commander or the Incident Management Team. The next year Governor Janklow created the Division of Wildland Fire Suppression and hired Mr. Lowe to run the agency.
Duh: added links are mine. Read it unadulterated here.
The day started out at the Custer High School theatre, where a funeral was held to remember the forest through skits, dance and music, all organized by Lonnie Arthur. A photo collage of images from all the events over the year, with music from the dozen songwriters who penned songs about the bark beetles, was also played. Afterwards, participants marched from the high school to Pageant Hill, where fireworks were set off and the beetle, crafted by master builder Karl Svensson, was ignited. [Custer County Chronicle]

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Pierre's GOP mayor begging for air service subsidy

Rep. Kristi Noem (earth hater-SD) visited the disaster area that is Pierre for a few minutes today. During an undress address to the legislature Noem chastened the men in the chamber to keep their dicks in their pants during the session.

She's in town reassuring donors that she's toiling in DC applying her teabagger skills bringing pork to her failed red state while defending her actions to her Kochtopus handlers.

Country of Origin Labeling (COOL) is expected to be included in a farm/food bill somewhere in an alternate universe.
Republican Sen. John Thune says negotiators are close to reaching agreement on the major sticking points, including livestock payments, dairy policy and the labeling law. Republican Rep. Kristi Noem says she believes it's possible to protect consumers and maintain a strong trade relationship with neighboring countries. [KTIV teevee]


South Dakota's extremist legislature has begun his perennial crusade to deny residents their civil, reproductive, water and property rights.

Infrastructure in the state's isolated capital is breaking down and Pierre's Republican mayor is up to her areolae in red state problems. She's whining again:
Pierre Mayor Laurie Gill says the city is looking at the idea of a federal Essential Air Service subsidy to help with the city’s air service. City officials have been frustrated in recent months with the number of flight cancellations and delays that have occurred. The city’s lone commercial service, Great Lakes Airlines, connects Pierre to both Denver and Minneapolis. Essential Air Service funding is used to help smaller communities maintain access to the national air transportation. That is done by subsidizing two to four round trips a day to a major hub airport. [KCCR Radio News]
Gill has announced she will run for yet another term as the failing city's mayor.
Great Lakes Airlines, which connects Pierre to both Minneapolis and Denver, has struggled this fall flying all of its flights. One of the reasons is new federal guidelines that require co-pilots to have more flying hours. When Great Lakes does not have enough pilots who meet those requirements; that means cancellations or delays in flights. [KCCR]







The 41st anniversary of Roe against Wade has prompted at least one cult to hunt some witches:
In Rapid City, the Cathedral of Our Lady of Perpetual Help is hosting a prayer service for 24 hours. The day of prayer began at 7:00 a.m. Wednesday and will continue until 7:00 a.m. Thursday. Over the past several decades, anti–abortion groups have taken steps to put small limits on the procedure in conservative states. [KOTA teevee]
jesus, mary and joseph: give me strength.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Today's intersection: coal and cancer

The computer boots up...it finds the internet...and opens to the Rapid City Journal obituaries. Eugene Venner, father of Bruce, Mark and Ivan is dead. Lots of deaths from cancer, I'm not there...now the Sioux Falls Argus Leader obituaries, lots of deaths from cancer...I'm not there, either. ip blog stats...not bad.

Sometimes, it just hits you in the face:
The Plankinton Student Council will sponsor its annual Shoot for A Cure Night at Plankinton High School on Friday, Jan. 31. Proceeds benefit the Aurora County Cancer Society. [Mitchell Daily Republic]
And:
In a 2013 report from the U.S. Department of Health, South Dakota ranked lowest in the nation in vegetable consumption and in the bottom five in fruit consumption, according to South Dakota State University Extension. [Mitchell Daily Republic]
South Dakota's junior senator sat out of the budget vote.
The Omnibus budget bill that’s passed both Houses of Congress has essentially ended Horse Slaughter in the United States. There is no funding in the bill for Horse Inspectors at USDA. Without that, slaughter cannot proceed. R CALF CEO Bill Bullard says he’s disappointed by the vote but says there may be an outside attempt to change that legislation. Bullard says what’s really troubling is horse slaughter opponents have come up with no means of disposing of unwanted or older horses. [WNAX Radio]
The modern horse was introduced to North America by the Spanish late in the 15th Century.
Artefacts such as projectile points, stone scrapers, bi-faces and large stone chopping/cutting tools found at Kotenski in Russia, a mass horse kill site, are similar to those found on large kill/butchery sites of North America, (Hoffdecker et al 2010, 1087). [Lisa Bond, Gender Roles and the Mass-kill Event: A Cross-cultural Analysis, Heritage Daily--Archaeology News]
The BLM argues that reducing herd sizes are necessary to protect the range and to keep the horse populations healthy into the future.
Surrounded by South Dakota's open prairie, the rectangular home with its red-metal roof is one of four prototypes the local nonprofit Thunder Valley Community Development Corporation is building with South Dakota college students and the University of Colorado Boulder's Native American Sustainable Housing Initiative. Others will feature compressed-earth blocks, structural insulated panels made of plywood-faced foam, or standard wood framing. Thunder Valley is just one of many recent green-building efforts undertaken by tribes nationwide to attack housing shortages and offer alternatives to the standardized, often prefab "HUD homes" – that is, those built by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development – common on reservations but often ill-suited to local climate and culture. [Nate Seltenrich, Building better homes in Indian Country, High Country News]

A familiar voice is screaming from the wilderness:
Troy Jones likes to spin truth into lies. Can he take Daugaard's $4.266 billion budget and say it is a not a 15.5% increase over the $3.693 billion spent in the year ended June 30,2013. Instead of spending time covering the rear ends of the SDGOP Establishment, maybe his time would be better spent on finding out where the extra $573 million is going. [Steve Sibson during a brief moment of lucidity with links from me.]

Even Senator don Juan Thune (earth hater-SD) gets it:
In the push to transition to renewable energy sources, coal has come under the crosshairs of the Obama administration, Thune said. In September, the EPA released regulations for carbon emissions from new coal-fired and gas-fired power plants, under the authority of the Clean Air Act. Those regulations will drive up electricity costs in South Dakota, Thune said, because “50 percent of energy in South Dakota comes from coal-fired power plants.” [Luke Hagen, Thune says energy debate coming, Mitchell Daily Republic]
Rewild the West.





Monday, January 20, 2014

State-funded Brookings French salted fat factory to rely on socialized dairies

USDA's Milk Income Loss Contract Program (MILC), administered by the Farm Service Agency (FSA), compensates dairy producers when domestic milk prices fall below a specified level. The Food, Conservation and Energy Act of 2008 (2008 Farm Bill), as amended by the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012, authorizes MILC through Sept. 30, 2013. The program has no set funding level. [Farm Service Agency, US Department of Agriculture]
OMG: I'm becoming Sibby!
Congress has been working on a five-year, $500 billion farm bill, but efforts to pass a new law have been slowed first over how much the country’s popular food stamp program should be cut. More recently, the debate has focused on the scope of subsidies to dairy farmers. Lawmakers responsible for crafting a final bill hoped to have it ready for floor debate in the middle of January, but there is growing uncertainty about whether the law can be completed this month. [Christopher Doering, Concern grows as farm bill languishes, Sioux Falls Argus Leader]
Real estate values in Brookings County are rebounding from the horrors of the Bush era.
Some officials in the Dakotas are sparring good-naturedly over whether the North or the South is better off. North Dakota's energy boom has money flowing into the state coffers and the state economy. But South Dakota also has a strong economy and low unemployment, and some leaders there say that state has a better quality of life. [KFGO, Fargo, North Fucking Dakota]


Senate Republican Leader Tim Rave, of Baltic, says he doubts the Legislature would expand Medicaid to the full extent envisioned by the federal health care overhaul. But he says lawmakers likely will discuss seeking federal approval to extend coverage to a smaller group of low-income people. [AP, KELO teevee]
What's the world coming to? The ridiculous right is revolting: Agenda 21, a Negro President.
Lora Hubbel hasn’t had health insurance in 20 years, but she’s no fan of the new federal health care program. In fact, the Republican candidate for governor wants to scrap Obamacare. Some folks say it needs to be repealed and replaced. She simply wants it gone. Instead of resigning to the fact that Obamacare will be implemented, Hubbel said, she decided to run for governor. [Scott Waltman, Candidate for governor pushing platform of opposition, Aberdeen American News]

South Dakota's earth hater governor is feeling the sting of his party's rebellion against him and his inability to reverse the state's failure to thrive. Ag producers have destroyed shelterbelts to plant industrial crops that deplete aquifers and now drought is blowing toxin-laden silt into downwind states.

A staff member writing on Gov. Daugaard's behalf in the Vermillion Plain Talk even invoked dead, brutal former Governor Bill Janklow, the clown who began the descent of his party and created the chemical toilet by dismantling environmental protection:
Still, I must oppose the erosion of our broad sales tax base through repeated, minor exemptions that ignore our overarching policy goals. Voters, taxpayers and the public in general don’t have an association, interest group, or lobbyists. As your governor, I believe it’s my responsibility to speak for the people. It’s my job to work on behalf of the unorganized many against the interests of the organized few. Let’s keep our tax rates low by asking everyone to share in the responsibility to pay.
Think this executive isn't worried about GOP's national demise as the local earth hater party continues its assault on an African-American president instead of working to advance the success of the nation?

Remember: South Dakota is a moocher state dependent on the feds to exist.



I had to laugh like Hell.

Just a reminder: former SOS Gant employee, Pat Powers fled his hometown, Pierre...at least twice...for the Peoples Republic of Brookings. Why? Because the state's capital is a shit hole.
You know, I’m shameless when it comes to candidate and VIP photos. But after I get them, I always think I look terrible in them. Case in point, one I just got today from a few months back. It was a good event, and Mike was an excellent speaker. But I look at myself, and go “yuck." Maybe I’m as hypercritical of myself as I’ve ever been, and just hate photos of myself because it amplifies it, as I’m doing so today as I choose an official “Realtor” photo, and find myself rejecting most of them. Anyway, here’s a picture of US Senate candidate Mike Rounds and myself. (At least the guy on the left looks good).--Pat Powers, South Dakota War Toilet.
From my inbox:

Dear South Dakota MoveOn member,

I created a petition on SignOn.org to Governor Dennis Daugaard, which says:

We call on Governor Daugaard to support expanded Medicaid to the poor, for these reasons:

1. Denial of health care to the poor is health care rationing, which we abhor;
2. Poor people who access emergency rooms are a burden on health care providers and increase the cost to other patients;
3. The federal government will pay almost 100% of the cost;
4. If the fear is that the federal government will renege on its bargain to pay, the legislature can enact a "circuit-breaker" provision;
5. South Dakota cannot ignore its responsibility to citizens who are ill or injured or have life-threatening conditions; health care is a human right.

Click here to add your name to this petition, and then pass it along to your friends.

Thanks!