Wednesday, May 25, 2011

McConnell on Today's Votes

Even Democrats won't vote for President Obama's budget:  not one.  It failed today in the Senate 0-97.

Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell issued the following statement on today's Senate votes regarding four budget proposals:

The President identified the problem more than a year ago when he said that ‘almost all of the long-term deficit and debt we face relates to the costs of Medicare and Medicaid.’ But Democrats in the Senate showed today that don't even want to talk about it. They rejected every single proposal to deal with it. They've chosen to ignore this crisis just like they ignored the last crisis. They're so focused on an election that's nearly two years away that they can't see the crisis in front of us.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Question of The Day...

If you are white and you like Herman Cain, but you don't like Barack Obama, are you still a racist?

750 Days of No Budget

The Senate -- controlled by Democrats -- has not passed a budget for 750 days.  Are they trying to outlast the Siege of Leningrad?

The House has proposed a budget courtesy of Rep. Paul Ryan. Democrats don't like it, of course, and yet fail to offer a real alternative. All 47 Republican Senators wrote to Harry Reid to demand that he start the budget process. The Democrats' refusal to do their job shows that they fail to comprehend the message votes sent last November. It also raises the question of whether Democrats really want to do the hard work of governing.

Every day that the Senate fails to enact a budget is another day of profligate spending, and another day here the opportunity to address the debt is missed. We cannot afford this delay.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Really Sad About Mitch Daniels

I cannot believe that Mitch Daniels decided not to run. He was the Republican party's best shot at electing a president who could restore a sense of fiscal discipline to this country.  He was our best shot at restoring a level of competence to government while recognizing that there are very few areas in which government should be involved.

It is just devastating news for the Republican party and for the country.

So who to support now?  Romney has disqualified himself with Romney-care.  If he gets the nomination, conservatives will have no choice but to start a third party.

Newt is brilliant.  His personal baggage, however, is too much of a distraction, and would threaten to demean the dignity of the office of the president.

Sarah Palin will not run.  Why should she?  She can influence public policy and get rich from the sidelines.

Tim Pawlenty benefits the most from Mitch Daniels declining to run.  Time to give Pawlenty a serious look.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Dear Louisville Metro Council

Dear Metro Council,

I am writing to inquire about the whereabouts of my free gift cards.  Were they lost in the mail?

I have decorated for Christmas every year.  And yet I have not received any gift cards for my efforts.

Target gift cards would do, although they expire if you don't use them fast enough.  My lawnmower died, so Home Depot gift cards would work.  I can always use Kroger gift cards -- especially for gas.

If it is too much trouble to buy they gift card, you can just get me cash. I understand that some of these freebies are given out at holiday parties to which I and other taxpayers were not invited.  No hard feelings.  Just give me my free stuff and all will be forgiven.

So Williams Wins

We all knew David Williams was going to win; only the margin of victory was in question.  And it wasn't pretty.  Williams failed to secure 50 percent of the Republican primary vote. Consequently, he enters the general election season significantly weakened. 

Gov. Steve Beshear must be clicking his heels or whatever form of celebration his tepid temperament manifests. 

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

It's Primary Day (Yawn)

Time to go do my civic duty and yet I find myself with no enthusiasm, no suspense about the outcome. This has not been a great primary for Kentucky Republicans.

For governor, David Williams will win.  We all know this. He is experienced and wickedly smart; that alone should give Republicans cause to cheer.  It is not enough. His reputation for meanness -- coupled with his intellect -- makes many in his own party dislike him (or fear him).

I've never understood why he would not let the gaming legislation come to a vote in the Senate.  On an issue so critical to the Commonwealth, he killed one proposed solution by death with a thousand paper cuts.  He prevented state senators from the accountability of an up or down vote. It resolved nothing and frustrated many.

I feel like I never had enough opportunity to learn much about Phil Moffett, the Tea Party favorite.  Dave Adams, his campaign manager (who helped Rand Paul win the Republican primary last year) wasted countless letters in cyberspace by updating his Facebook/twitter status every time he changed locale. Thus, those of us who "befriended" him -- out of interest in learning more about Moffett -- were forced to endure updates in our news feeds that "Dave Adams is heading to Adair County" or "Dave Adamas is stuck on traffic in I-71."  What a missed opportunity.

Bobbie Holsclaw has no chance.  That is just a fact. She entered the race too late.  Nonetheless, she deserves credit for the courage to take on David Williams.  In so doing, she was subjected to caustic remarks about her hair and her name.  Even worse, I heard one elected official dismiss her as "supremely unqualified to be governor."  Please.  She has more executive experience than did our president when he was sworn in.  More importantly, she has demonstrated the ability to make government competent and responsive.  The Jefferson County Clerk's office, under her tenure, has become noteworthy for its courteous and prompt delivery of services to the public.

As for the rest of the ticket, Anne Northup has worked hard to elect Jamie Comer. That's sufficient endorsement for me.  None of the other candidates has done much to pierce my consciousness.  Indeed, I wasted most of last evening answering robo-calls by people I've never heard of on behalf of people I've never heard of.

I'm just glad it's over and we can move onto the task of defeating Steve Beshear and Jack Conway. If there's one consolation about primary day for Republicans it is this:  we have an outstanding nominee for Attorney General in Todd P'Pool.  Thank heavens he was unopposed today.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Ed Meese Robo-calls for Moffett

Ed Meese just sent a recorded phone message on behalf of Phil Moffett.  General Meese maintains that Moffett is the candidate most ideologically similar to Ronald Reagan.  He points to Moffett's support of Rand Paul in last year's senatorial race and Moffett's role in the Tea Party.

Moffett should be proud of the endorsement.  Meese was part of Reagan's California kitchen cabinet before the first Reagan administration.  He is a true conservative and a decent, honorable man. His opinion should matter to Reagan conservatives.

Meese has remained active promoting the Federalist Society.  Indeed, Meese gave a lecture that caused even the mainstream media to consider such concepts as judicial restraint and the original intent of the Framers.  Meese also wrote a treatise on constitutional law that has become an important counter-point to that of  Harvard Law professor Larry Tribe, proponent of the so-called "living constitution."

Moffett has the Tea Party vote. If recent polling is to be believed, however, that is not enough to win the Republican primary.  He needs to reach more traditional, establishment Republicans.  The endorsement from Ed Meese was a good step in that direction, but probably comes too late.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Some Thoughts on Nuclear Energy

With many things in life, something must arouse our attention to bring about change or reform. Though I am very upset for the people in Japan, I believe we cannot leave this nuclear accident ignored. This is a horrible thing, but we must assess it from every angle to ensure nothing like this ever happens again.
The Fukushima nuclear accident is a particularly unique situation. For economical purposes, many nuclear plants are located near large bodies of water. For example, many American plants are located on the southeast coast of the US along the ocean, where earthquakes nearly never occur. The Floridian coast does get its share of natural disasters too. In southern Florida, the Turkey Point nuclear plant was hit head on by Hurricane Andrew, which brought winds of up to 162 miles per hour, yet it only sustained light damage to a water tower. In the case of the Fukushima plant, it was hit by a tsunami.

Nuclear energy is created much the same way as any other form. Water is heated, steam is produced, and it moves a turbine creating energy. The only difference is the heat source. Instead of oil or coal, uranium is used. Atoms split in fission, and neutrons are released, then they react with more uranium atoms, and heat is produced. A lot of heat. As a result of the backup generators failing at Fukushima, the heat may become so great that it may soon melt the casing that the uranium is stored in, and a meltdown would occur.
Once uranium is used, or spent, it must be removed from the reactor. In every nuclear cycle, about 3% of the uranium in an average reactor must be removed. In many plants, it will sit for about 50 years in pools within the plant until it is nearly 1000th of its initial radioactivity. At Fukushima, some of this waste has leaked into the ocean.

After the 50 years is up, the spent uranium must be moved to a final resting place, where it will sit for several thousand years before it will be safe for humans to interact with. This final resting place for the US was to be Yucca Mountain, Nevada, but on April 14, 2011, Congress voted to cut Yucca Mountain’s funding; therefore we now do not have anywhere to put our radioactive waste. I believe Yucca Mountain was a very good choice for a nuclear landfill, and it was planned many years ago. Because nuclear energy really took a boom in the 1960’s, a lot of radioactive waste is now hitting its 50th birthday, and must be removed as the pools in the plants are quickly overcrowding, but the sad reality of our government is that they would rather spend money on stupid things like skylights in a state-run liquor warehouse than promote the general Welfare of its citizens. 

McConnell Analogizes Obama to Carter

Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell has attacked the Obama administration's energy policy -- with its drilling moratorium and proposed tax hikes.

As voters cringe every time they fill their cars, McConnell reminds us that we have seen these failed policies before.  It's Welcome Back Carter time.

Politico quotes McConnell:

"Democrats need to stop deflecting attention from their own complicity in our nation’s overdependence on foreign oil,” McConnell said at the Nuclear Energy Assembly conference in Washington, D.C. “They need to end an approach that hasn’t changed since the Jimmy Carter administration.

“Just like Carter, they’re more interested in using this crisis [of gas prices] as an excuse to push for higher taxes than they are at solving the problem itself,” McConnell said. “And just like Carter, they’re underestimating the frustration of the American people.”
. . . .
 "In all of these areas, the administration’s had the same approach: the less American energy the better,” he added. "If Republicans represent the 'all of the above' approach, the Obama administration represents the 'none of the above' approach unless of course you want to sell them some wind turbines or solar panels."

Todd Rakes in the $$$$

Republican nominee for Attorney General Todd P'Pool is now outraising Jack Conway  3 to 1, according to P'Pool's campaign.

P'Pool raised more than $114,000 over a 15-day reporting period. Conway raised just $35,530.  He was helped, in large measure, by Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell, who appeared for P'Pool at a fundraiser in Madisonville.

Looks like it's time for Jack to do a little fundraising back on the Left Coast, where the Barbara Streisand wing of his party can best appreciate the jut of his chin and the coif of his hair.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Elephants in the Bluegrass Mobile

If you are trying to access the Elephants in the Bluegrass mobile site from your BlackBerry or other mobile device and for some reason it does not redirect you to the mobile site, please click the Mobile button at the top of the page under the logo and you will be taken to the beautiful new mobile site.


Its all about ME.....

Rarely in history has a President taken so much credit for doing so little. The recent killing of Osama bin Laden is a long awaited instance of American justice, but Barack Obama's part in the narrative is rather limited. To hear Barack tell it, you would think he was one of the guys who fast roped into bin Laden's compound, and maybe even one of the ones that delivered the euphemistic "two taps" to bin Laden's head.
We will never know exactly how it all developed, but it is likely that the military guys came to Obama with the plan to get bin Laden and asked him what he thought. "Looks good to me, go for it" was a likely response. Obama acts like he has spent the last two years crawling through caves looking for bin Laden. He deserves credit for having the wherewithal to finish the mission started by George Bush and for approving the wonderfully successful plan, but he could definitely stand to ratchet it down a few notches on the taking credit side. Navy SEAL Team 6 and other members of our military deserve the majority of the credit.

Conway Campaigns Against Mitch

Jack Conway has sent out a new email blast to raise funds, entitled "Say No To Mitch!"

Apparently Conway cannot recall the name of his Republican opponent for Attorney General -- Todd P'Pool -- and has decided to run against Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell, instead. P'Pool's name is not even named in Conway's email.

To be sure, Conway has a big advantage over P'Pool in terms of name recognition, and Conway is walking a tightrope to implicitly attack P'Pool without adding to the challenger's name ID.

So Conway has chosen to ignore P'Pool altogether and go after McConnell. The crowd has always despised McConnell; by tying P'Pool to McConnell, Conway tosses a little red meat to left.

For independents and conservative Democrats who have reelected McConnell over and over, however, Conway has just sent a reminder that the most important Republican in the country backs P'Pool. It's an endorsement of which P'Pool is justly proud. And it's an endorsement that signals Republicans that P'Pool deserves our enthusiastic support. Conway whines in his email that "Mitch McConnell headlined a fundraiser for my opponent last week where he raised thousands of dollars from special interests."

While P'Pool was proud to stand with McConnell, Gov. Steve Beshear snubbed President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden when they went to thank the troops at Fort Campbell; Beshear went to Oaks. Come to think of it, where was Jack Conway on Oaks Day?

Conway's email also makes an appeal to class warfare. Lots of rhetoric about big corporations and special interests. That strategy likewise backfires. As P'Pool has reminded voters across the Commonwealth, the Obama administration intends to put the coal industry out of business -- and is attempting to do so by undemocratic regulations where it lacks to the votes in Congress. P'Pool (whose ancestors worked the coal mines) will fight to protect this industry that not only employs so many Kentuckians but keeps our energy rates competitive, an important factor for companies considering relocating here.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

The Elephants Are Now Mobile

With 10% of our traffic coming from mobile web browsers, it's about time we make our site look nice on your brand new smart phone! Currently, iPhone, Android, and other smart phone devices will automatically redirect to our beautiful new mobile site. UnfortunatelyBlackBerry users are not supported at this time, but rest assured, we are working on a fix.

Shoot me an email at if it does not work on your device or if you have any problems.


Update: Scan this bar code with your smartphone to access our site

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

The Other Tools Work, Too

[The following is a guest post by Mark O'Brien.]

Ironic isn't it?

From credible reports of information from dozens of news outlets, the following list now emerges of "Bush's nearly impeachable atrocities", which were utilized and were deemed to be critical to the success in the targeted assassination of Osama bin Laden, for which The Obama Administration is taking particular pride. I say job well done.

  • warrantless wire tapping
  • renditions of unlawful combatants to foreign prisons
  • detention of unlawful combatants in Guantanamo Bay Prison
  • use of enhanced coercive interrogation tactics, "gasp", water boarding
  • ordering and carrying out a targeted assassination of a terrorist
  • invading a foreign country without UN or Congressional approval

I am proud to be a citizen of this great country which has come so far in the past 30 months in enthusiastically supporting these highly effective tactics, initiated by George W. Bush, and now openly embraced and in full deployment by the Obama Administration in fighting our war on terror (man caused disasters/overseas contingency operations).

Nancy Pelosi is leading the charge to bring this to the attention of all.

Here’s Nancy Pelosi from a press conference on September 7, 2006:

[E]ven if [Osama bin Laden] is caught tomorrow, it is five years too late. He has done more damage the longer he has been out there. But, in fact, the damage that he has done . . . is done. And even to capture him now I don’t think makes us any safer.

And here’s Nancy Pelosi yesterday:

The death of Osama bin Laden marks the most significant development in our fight against al-Qaida. . . . I salute President Obama, his national security team, Director Panetta, our men and women in the intelligence community and military, and other nations who supported this effort for their leadership in achieving this major accomplishment. . . . [T]he death of Osama bin Laden is historic. . . .

Absolutely love to hear from my progressive friends on this issue.

Waterboarding Works

CIA Director Leon Panetta went off script and confirmed the obvious: enhanced interrogation at places like Gitmo has contributed important leads in the war on terror -- including information leading to the location of Osama bin Laden.

From the Daily Caller:

"We had multiple series of sources that provided information with regards to this situation… clearly some of it came from detainees [and] they used these enhanced interrogation techniques against some of those detainees,” he [Panetta] told NBC anchor Brian Williams.

When asked by Williams if water-boarding was part of the “enhanced interrogation techniques,” Panetta simply said “that’s correct.”

Score one for common sense v. political correctness.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Rand Paul Reacts to OBL Death

Sen. Rand Paul has issued a statement in response to the killing of Osama bin Laden. In fact, Paul's staff is so on top of communications that their release went out at 12:12 a.m. Here it is:

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Upon news reports of the death of al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden this evening, Sen. Rand Paul issued the following statement:

“I commend our troops, the intelligence community, and the military leaders involved in both the administrations of Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama for their perseverance and courage in pursuit of this most grievous enemy of the United States of America.”