aTypical Joe: a gay New Yorker living in the rural South
Tuesday, September 11, 2007
Way to go Larry!
“Hustler publisher Larry Flynt took a fresh jab on Tuesday at scandal-plagued Sen. David Vitter (R-La.), administering a lie detector test to a New Orleans prostitute who contends that she and Vitter had a relationship in 1999. Vitter has denied extramarital relations with Wendy Cortez, who appeared with Flynt in Los Angeles to address reporters. Flynt said the lie detector offers 99.9 percent proof that Cortez, whose ties to Vitter have long set tongues wagging in Louisiana, is telling the truth.”
We’re looking for Democrats. You know, people think because I’m a civil libertarian that I’m only after Republicans. That’s not true. I’m after anybody. But I tell you, in the leads that we got, it seems like about 80 percent of them are Republicans.
The next GOP gay scandal?
* the bodies of Republican political consultant Ralph Gonzalez, 39, president of The Strategum Group, his roommate David Abrami and “a friend,” Jason Robert Drake, were found in the house of Ralph Gonzalez.
* Gonzalez served with the Republican Party of Florida’s House Campaign Division and executive director of the Georgia Republican Party and counted the Alabama Republican Legislative Committee as a client, producing an anti-gay flier accusing a Dem candidate of supporting marriage equality.
* A newspaper, Florida Today, initially reported that there were signs of a struggle, printing “Lovers’ fight may have sparked three deaths” as its headline. The paper later scrubbed any references to a love triangle.
* BradBlog has shown the ties between Gonzalez and Florida’s vote-tampering congressman, Tom Feeney. From Pat Go Bye Bye:Gonzalez, who was out to his friends, had ties to Ralph Reed when he took over the Georgia Republican Party and used unethical tactics to beat Senator Max Cleland. He was also the campaign chair for the ethically-challenged Tom Feeney’s congressional campaign as well as his state rep campaign after which Feeney became house speaker and got involved in a software-buying scandal involving Yang Enterprise. Feeney is best known for his vote-rigging scheme (which has ties to an unexplained death of a Florida state investigator in Valdosta GA), Jack Abramoff, and a variety of unethical smear tactics against Democratic candidates.* Republican Congressman Patrick McHenry has ties to Gonzalez and Drake, the latter was determined to be the shooter in the murder-suicide.
* McHenry’s office initially denied knowing Drake but confirmed later that McHenry did know him, but didn’t specify the nature of the relationship.
* Drake was also allegedly tied to a gay escort service in Virginia; the prostitution angle—and who it extends to—is very murky at this point, with few sources on the record.
The people and relationships involved are almost too convoluted to follow; here’s more:
* Patrick McHenry is also affiliated with outed former National Field Director of the RNC Dan Gurley. According to NC Conservative, McHenry “owes his seat to Dan Gurley” -- with Gurley working with Robert Drake on McHenry’s behalf.
* McHenry’s apparently a good friend of the former National Young Republican Chairman, Glenn Murphy. Yes, that Glenn Murphy—the one arrested for sexually assaulting a sleeping man, performing oral sex on him (image of police report here). McHenry supported him for the National Young Republican Chairmanship.
* Pat’s deputy field director Brett Keeter blew a 0.13 on a DWI, recently and received a two-week suspension and alcohol education classes. Keeter, as a Region IV director of North Carolina Federation of Young Republicans
And that’s just the beginning.
John Barrow’s challenge
I’m still simmering over the BushDog attack* on John Barrow and Jim Marshall, but haven’t had time to pen my response. (Short version: the way to the dream of “a Congress filled with progressives and populists” is emphatically not to replace the conservative Democrats you’ve got with far more conservative Republicans but, rather, to foster, support and build up the small liberal base that does exist here so that we can move our representatives).
In that context I see that today AJC’s Political Insider looks at the hunt for a Barrow challenger:
It’s worth nothing that the Georgia congressional race that, in private conversations, has excited the most attention from Republicans involves a GOP incumbent.
House Majority Whip Barry Fleming (R-Harlem) is to announce his challenge this morning to U.S. Rep. Paul Broun (R-Athens), who won the 10th District seat only two months ago.
In past election seasons, Democrats Jim Marshall in the 8th District and John Barrow in the 12th have been perennial Republican targets. And on paper, they’re still vulnerable.
But the anointed GOP candidate in the middle Georgia race against Marshall, former Air Force major general Rick Goddard, has had a rough start.
Even more indicative of trepidation among Georgia Republicans, and their fear of a poor harvest in ’08, is the party’s failure — thus far — to field any candidate to challenge the Savannah-based Barrow
Perhaps the Bush Dogs can help bring Republican challengers (fearful of being the only GOP loser in this reddest of red states) out of the woodwork by continuing the attack* on their own Democratic incumbent.
* I note that Stoller specifically says, “Remember, this is not an attack, it’s a profile so we can get to know these people and eventually persuade them to do the right thing.” However, the linked Bush Dog profile (written one year ago - that’s all the Bush Dog campaign can muster?) is a self-described attack on Barrow, “Five minutes after I finished writing the attack...on his friend Barrow, the phone rang and… sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander and the time to throw the rascals out isn’t only about Republicans but also about throwing out Democrats who vote for them.”
A recipe for a Republican district if ever there was one. While on the topic, it’s also worth noting that though Georgia’s 12th was once “gerrymandered to dump lots of African-Americans in one bizarrely shaped district wigglin’ and wagglin’ all over the state to create a Democratic seat,” that was undone in 2004 leaving Barrow in a much more precariously Democratic district.
Office in the crosshairs
Earlier today IBM (IBM) threw its weight behind the Open Office project, a move that will give the open source productivity suite some much needed support in the enterprises. And if that wasn’t enough, now Google (GOOG) has upped the ante on Microsoft Office by teaming up with consulting company, Cap Gemini. Cap Gemini is going to help push the Google Office aka Google Apps Premier Edition (GAPE) to the enterprises. If you consider dozens of start-ups with their own twist on Office 2.0 as potential competitors, then it seems it is open season on Microsoft Office - one of the biggest cash engines for Microsoft (MSFT). The Cap Gemini deal seems to worry Microsoft… Cap Gemini can help overcome the lack-of-support stigma for Google. A handful of large US corporations have tried out Google Apps in recent past. Large enterprises are getting increasingly comfortable with using software as a service. The success of Salesforce.com and other such offerings are indicative of these changing attitudes. [...]
The commoditization of software has made its impact felt on the server software, web servers, storage servers, and application servers ( J-Boss). If someone was out charging high prices for products, open source and lower cost products emerged and caused rapid commoditization. GAPE is trying to accelerate the process and bring it to productivity apps.