Monday, August 28, 2006

Joke of the Last 12 Years

Anyone can use this for their favorite GOP incumbent. It's from Ron,

A joke both parties can enjoy!

While walking down the street one day an UNDECIDED VOTER is tragically hit by a truck and dies.

His soul arrives in heaven and is met by St. Peter at the entrance.
Welcome to heaven, says St. Peter.

Before you settle in, it seems there is a problem. We seldom see an UNDECIDED VOTER around these parts, you see, so we're not sure what to do with you.

No problem, just let me in, says the man.

Well, I would like to, but I have orders from higher up. What we will do is have you spend one day in hell and one in heaven. Then you can choose where to spend eternity.

Really, I have made up my mind. I want to be in heaven, says the UNDECIDED VOTER.

I'm sorry, but we have our rules.

And with that, St. Peter escorts him to the elevator and he goes down, down, down to hell. The doors open and he finds himself in the middle of a green golf course. In the distance is a clubhouse and standing in front of it are all his Republican friends and other UNDECIDED VOTERS who had worked with him.

Everyone is very happy and in evening dress. They run to greet him, shake his hand, and reminisce about the good times they had.

They play a friendly game of golf and then dine on lobster, caviar and champagne.

Also present is Rep. John Shimkus (IL-19), who really is a very friendly guy who has a good time dancing, and telling jokes. They are having such a good time that before he realizes it, it is time to go.

Everyone gives him a hearty farewell and waves while the elevator rises . . .

The elevator goes up, up, up and the door reopens on heaven where St. Peter is waiting for him.

Now it's time to visit heaven.

So, 24 hours pass with the UNDECIDED VOTER joining a group of contented souls moving from cloud to cloud, playing the harp and singing. They have a good time and, before he realizes it, the 24 hours have gone by, and St. Peter returns.

Well, then, you have spent a day in hell and another in heaven. Now choose your eternity.

The UNDECIDED VOTER reflects for a minute, then he answers: Well, I would never have said it before, I mean heaven has been delightful, but I think I would be better off in hell.

So St. Peter escorts him to the elevator and he goes down, down, down to hell.

Now the doors of the elevator open and he's in the middle of a barren land covered with waste and garbage.

He sees all his friends, dressed in rags, picking up the trash and putting it in black bags as more trash falls from above.

Then John Shimkus comes over to him and puts his arm around his shoulder.

I don't understand, stammers the UNDECIDED VOTER. Yesterday I was here and there was a golf course and clubhouse, and we ate lobster and caviar, drank champagne, and danced and had a great time. Now there's just a wasteland full of garbage and my friends look miserable. What happened?

Shimkus looks at him, smiles and says, Yesterday we were campaigning . . .

Today you voted.

Remember once you vote, Rep. Shimkus will forget about you.

Vote Stover for Congress! Honest, Friendly -- and he does NOT forget.
Nuff said!

NOTE: Rep. Shimkus has only been in Congress since January 1997. It just seems longer!

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Where in IL-19 is Dan Stover?

From those in the know, Dan Stover (D-Centralia) is all over and constantly in Madison County. He was in Metropolis was for Sen. Barak Obama's tour. One or two local candidates managed a quick photograph with the junior senator. Also, Dan is very busy building a phenomenal field organization in the largest county in IL-19. It is like nothing constituents have seen since Rep. John Shimkus (R-Collinsville) was a freshman congressman.

The Grand Old Party's (GOP) incumbent is more vulnerable than he or either Party realizes. There are ten factors to evaluate his level of vulnerability:

1. Q: Has he lost touch with IL-19 voters?
A: YES -- He is completely out of touch with voters based on his record. He fights for special interests, the privileged princes of perks and pork. He only wants more of the same bureaucratic indifference towards the people instead of understanding the values of working, aspiring people in their daily lives. With no ideas of his own, he remains a puppet of his Texas handlers. The GOP mantra of Growth, Opportunity, and Peace (GOP) has become Decline, Impossibility, and Conflict (DIC) on his watch. Bottom line: The GOP Majority now equals DIC. Not a good thing for the people.
NOTE: Decline also means failure to most people. Google has a more accurate definition.

2. Q: Does he have an offensive personality?
A: YES -- Any commissioned officer (albeit an inactive weekend warrior) pretending to be an adult that can throw prize-winning, spoiled-brat temper tantrums has an offensive personality (and he is very well-known for those tantrums, too!).

3. Q: Does he suffer or might he soon suffer from scandal?
A: YES -- As soon as IL-19 voters acknowledge the REAL integrity of the John Shimkus character and recognize him for the corrupt person he truly is (including a loyal Tom DeLay soldier).

4. Q: Are his accomplishments meager?
A: YES -- He is the ONLY Lifetime Zero in Illinois. As the walking symbol of the state's highest unemployment rates, corporate greed, an absent military defense, and insignificance, the favorite motto for voters is now SHUMP DIMKUS (only 2 words say a lot!).

5. Q: Does he have poor relations with the media or does he project poorly through the media?
A: NO -- He fakes it too well, and the editors make excuses for his lack of integrity.

6. Q: Does overall party registration or IL-19 voter turn out work against him?
A: YES -- Even people who voted for him in the past and grew up with him want him out of office. Dan's supporters have his bumper stickers even on campus at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville. Their vehicles sport two stickers in the back window!

7. Q: Is his ideology out of sync with most IL-19 voters?
A: YES -- He is now the archetypal government insider, elitist, career politician, big spender in Congress for self-interests only. The only ideology he ackowledges is that of his corporate constituents which proves Factor No. 1.

8. Q: Will he have a problem raising enough money?
A: N/A (He is an incumbent. Taxpayers foot the bill for his re-elect fundraising, and his staff have always campaigned while on the job. Former Gov. Ryan taught them well to get John Shimkus elected in the first place. Although, anti-gay, he has no qualms about taking their donations (or is there a hidden part of John Shimkus that is just begging to come out of the closet?). So much for integrity.)

9. Q: Does he perform poorly under pressure and in handling criticism?
A: N/A (He uses garden variety passive-aggressive avoidance behaviors. He cruises through elections as much as possible so persuading him to agree to ONE debate on the ONE day he would agree to was like pulling teeth!)

10. Q: Is he less active due to age, health or apathy?
A: YES -- He is active only when he has no choice, and his health took a beating with his surgery last year (all that MTBE contamination in the So. IL groundwater is viscious to live with -- just a guess).
If voters can honestly answer YES to at least 1 or 2 of these questions, there is really no reason to keep John Shimkus in office. His score is 7 YES, 1 NO, and 2 N/A. Typical for a Zero who could write volumes on Diminish, Impede, Maintain (DIM). He diminishes quality of life, impedes household income levels, and maintains good ol boy cronyism. The 12 years John Shimkus has be on The Hill have left So. IL very dim indeed. People deserve a persuasive leader not a milktoast follower.

Unfortunately, the DCCC considers IL-19 and every GOP incumbent congressional district safe so they will do nothing for the candidates unless their name is Tammy Duckworth (IL-06) or Rep. Melissa Bean (IL-08). They received over $6 million from the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) for their campaigns. Remember the following facts:
  • The DCCC does not give any form of support to the candidates they choose to ignore.
  • Representatives call potential donors and tell them that they are working with the DCCC to identify said races.
  • Representative callers then tell potential donors that some of that money will be coming back to the district to help the candidate.
  • Finally, the representative callers use the candidate's name to get contributions from potential donors with no intention of helping the district candidate at all.
Voters need to take a stand -- NOW! Subsequent generations will get the bills for the overspending of today's generations. The best solution is contributing directly to Dan Stover's campaign and VOTE for him in November!

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Where is Tim Johnson (IL-15)?

At one time, a fellow blogger from IL-15 legitimately asked What exactly does Tim Johnson do? The site no longer exists, but the justifying text does:

The current United States House of Representatives seems to be one of the laziest on record. By the end of the 2005-2006 term, the House is scheduled to have met 241 times. No House has served fewer days since the 1955-56 session. Even the infamous 1947-48 "Do-Nothing Congress" met for 254 days.

This is particularly strange considering the country is supposed to be in a state of war. I reckon there are plenty of soldiers serving in Iraq who would love to only work 140 days a year, as the House managed to pull off in 2005.

Our particular representative, the wiry Timothy Johnson, seems to fit right into to this culture of lethargy. Good ole Tim has only given one speech on the floor of the House since 2003. In fact, Johnson has only proposed 32 bills during his three terms as representative for the 15th district. While an average of around five bills per year may seem like a lot, Tim is in a tie for last place among all-time bill losers. He has never had a sponsored bill enacted.

To be fair, Johnson has co-sponsored some 483 bills during his three terms. Of course co-sponsoring a bill is about as hard as saying "uh-huh" when asked. This seems to be easy for Johnson, who has voted "ney" only five times this year (though I should mention that three of those votes were to protect the environment and one was against the USA Patriot Act). Tim is also Vice-Chair of the Committee on Science's Subcommittee on Research. I assume it is an honor to be Vice-Chairman of a subcommittee of a committee.

What is striking about Johnson is his seeming vulnerability on a host of issues. He votes against giving bonuses to soldiers, accepted $25K from Tom Delay's ARMPAC, and is strongly opposed to stem-cell research. Moreover, he seems genuinely disengaged from the process of governing. His personal life seems a bit checkered, to put it mildly.

But most important is his inability to bring the rewards of majority rule to the 15th District. Are republicans content with having Johnson as their rep just because he is a republican? Shouldn't we see some benefit to having a republican representative in Congress during the heyday of republicanism?
Some of the comments responded in a typical Republican manner: they excused Tim Johnson's inactivity. The blogger had a better conclusion:
In short, what has Tim Johnson done for us lately? Like the U.S. House, the answer seems clear: not much.
Hopefully, the IL-15 Democratic voters that allowed Tim Johnson in the House in the first place now realize that integrity and common sense were sorely lacking in him. Actually, another reader has provided additional information in that regard:
Tim Johnson has only attended 20% of the Agriculture Committee meetings (and we have 102,000 farms in the District...) And also that this is endemic of the paper clip scandal. (When he was in the Illinois House, he stuck a paper clip in the voting machine so it would vote 'present' and he could be out chasing ambulances. The main site used to document the scandal is now mysteriously not found but it is still on his Congresspedia page.)

If you want my answer for what does Tim Johnson do it's this: He eats at the Courier Cafe in Urbana, usually with one of his three ex-wives. And by eats I mean sits there for hours drinking tea, doesn't tip, and makes drug deals on the pay phone (off the record of course). In all seriousness though, I have been there twice in the last 6 months and he has been there both times.
What is this man doing in Congress??? Clearly, he does not want to be there. Give him his walking papers!!
David Gill is the better choice. He is also one of the Russ Feingold's Progressive Patriots.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Public Interest Zeroes

The U.S. Public Interest Research Group (U.S. PIRG) began in 1983 to act as watchdog for the public trust. The organization issues The Congressional Scorecard Report every year. It is now available for 2006. It looks at the most important public interest votes taken between February 9, 2005 and February 1, 2006 in the U.S. Congress. These votes determined the direction of federal policy on critical issues ranging from environmental preservation to health care to consumer protections. The issues are these:

  1. Stop Drilling in the Arctic Refuge
  2. Stop Drilling in the Arctic Refuge
  3. Stop Drilling in the Arctic Refuge
  4. Reject Dirty, Dangerous Energy Bill
  5. Reject Dirty, Dangerous Energy Bill
  6. Reject Big Oil Giveaway Bill
  7. Increase Auto Gas Mileage Standard
  8. Make Polluters Pay
  9. Regulation of Oil Refineries
  10. End Giveaways to Big Oil
  11. Protect Consumers from Price Gouging
  12. Protect States' Rights
  13. Cut Nuclear Subsidies
  14. Protect Endangered Species Act
  15. Protect Coasts from Drilling
  16. Stop $12 Billion Cut to Student Loans
  17. Stop $14.3 Billion Cut to Student Loans
  18. Protect Consumer Bankruptcy Rights
  19. Protect Class Action Rights
  20. Protect Victims of Malpractice
  21. Protect Online Freedom of Speech
  22. Reject CAFTA
A quick highlight of the overall report shows that 13 members of the Senate and 92 members of the House did not take the public interest position on any of the votes that U.S. PIRG tracked. In other words, they are considered Public Interest Zeros. Illinois has no Heroes. It does have a few unsurprising Zeroes:
  • Henry Hyde (IL-06)
  • Jerry Weller (IL-11)
  • Donald Manzullo (IL-16)
  • John Shimkus (IL-19)
Here are the voting records on the PIRG issues (2006, Lifetime):
  • Durbin (D) 95% 85%
  • Obama (D) 86% 86%
  1. Rush (D) 77% 78%
  2. Jackson (D) 100% 95%
  3. Lipinski (D) 86% 86%
  4. Gutierrez (D) 77% 91%
  5. Emanuel (D) 68% 81%
  6. Hyde (R) 0% 8%
  7. Davis (D) 82% 90%
  8. Bean (D) 77% 77%
  9. Schakowsky (D) 91% 96%
  10. Kirk (R) 41% 46%
  11. Weller (R) 0% 10%
  12. Costello (D) 73% 70%
  13. Biggert (R) 18% 14%
  14. Hastert (R) * * (The Speaker of the House votes at his discretion.)
  15. Johnson (R) 64% 53%
  16. Manzullo (R) 0% 11%
  17. Evans (D) 95% 92%
  18. LaHood (R) 27% 22%
  19. Shimkus (R) 0% 4%
NOTE: The WORST -- by far -- worse than Manzullo, Weller, & even Hyde -- John Shimkus. The latest word is that IL-15 constituents are wondering if the man fell off the planet, and he is better than a Zero. (Amazing how anyone in Congress can be better than John Shimkus! Reality can be stranger than fiction!!)

NOTE (Again): IL-19 is HIGH on the MTBE contamination charts.

People vote for their representatives -- not corporations. Forward this information to your favorite Democratic challenger and VOTE for that person!!!

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