No more Cane, less Kaine, and a Public Caning?

Life at Tranquility Base Rehab continues, and therapy on the knee is done…I have been discharged…it is now completely up to me and my own energy, wiles, and plans to keep strengthing it in prep for knee #2 later this summer.  The cane has been tucked away for a summer rest, as will be the elevated bathroom seat (more on that at another time).

I have noted with interest that another Kaine, our Gov, is out there talking smack about how the GOP will be showing their true colors if they don’t agree with his transportation plans.

Dang, what a blowhard.

The truth is that Kaine really has no plan to address the TRAMOB issues facing the commonwealth beyond raising taxes.  He wants to do it in an even larger quantity and using the same means that were rejected by the public in the 2002 referendum, but he doesn’t have the stones to go back to the public and really try to build support.

Kaine is long on rhetoric and short on action.  What he should have done in the 2006 and 2007 sessions was have the democrats offer up their own transportation plan.  They didn’t, being content to either stonewall the GOP or sign onto a GOP proposal.  Had they made a record in those legislative years, then the 2007 statehouse races would have revolved even more around the GOP majority failure on transportation.

Shoot…even this year the Demos could not come up with a plan that could pass the Democratic Majority state senate…so how, when the dems cannot agree on a plan themselves, are they going to successfully float the canard that the GOP should be the target of all transportation finger pointing?

Now, had they established that record in 2006-2007, and had they had the courage of their convictions and voted against the 2007 GOP plan-well, that would be one thing.  But in this reality, I don’t think DasGov will be able to create the huge GOP backlash he wants.

Good thing they are out trying to create it themselves!

The GOP convention, with its near nomination of Bob Marshall and overwhelming selection of Jeff Frederick as GOP state Chairman has caused the same high decibel wails that normally are reserved for public canings or executions.  Many of those describing the events make it sound like a cross between the Super Bowl, Armageddon, and Judgement Day all wrapped into one.

My attention has been elsewhere, so I have limited my comments.  But now a few things need to be said or reiterated…

a) John Hager, a really nice guy, had to go.  Often organizations keep folks in office because they are nice or have held other positions.  John Hager’s contributions are appreciated, but his time is past.  The GOP is in the dumps now in no small part because we have surrendered the technolgy edge to the democrats, and because we have allowed them to edge ahead on numerous fronts.  If Jeff Fredericks platform is enacted, then that edge will be eliminated.

b) Jim Gilmore is now a weaker version of Tom Davis in the senate race.  It has been ten+ years since he ran for office, six since he held office.  And…despite the lack of money, general conditions, etc., Gilmore has a problem that really cuts against him unless he is leading.  I suggest that despite his indomitable determination, Gilmore has never really struck a chord with the GOP.  He won his AG nomination race as the eastern suburban guy v. the valley guy, won his AG race in the Allen landslide in 1993, and won his gov race with the “No car tax” issue.  Gilmore has been successful, but I never detected the deep well of emotional support for him.  Consider Dick Obenshain, Wyatt Durrette, George Allen…each of them in their day had a huge base of support for them that would come out come hell or high water and keep them competitive and more than alive.  Mark Warner and Jim Webb have it in the Demo side-LB3 has it in spades.

Gilmore doesn’t have it, which means he has to be able to win on some kind of issue or argument…and since Marshall outflanks him on the right, Gilmore has to argue electability-[Irony alert!] which is the same type of argument Tom Davis was ready to offer back when Gilmore was the “issues candidate”.

Ah, the sweet irony…almost having his petard hoisted by becoming the man he was afraid, scared, terrified of running against in a primary.

c) I don’t understand the whole problem imputed to the manner in which ballots were tabulated.  Back in the day the different congressional districts did all their tabulation at their district table/hq in the convention hall with out sending them up to a central spot and then back to the districts…and we didn’t have computers or the whole array of wireless tools available in 2008.  A bad show all around from planning to execution, and item #1 showing the technology deficit of the current RPV.

I was going to comment on the latest permutations in the NoVa congressional races, but I am out of time…and will save that for later.



8 thoughts on “No more Cane, less Kaine, and a Public Caning?

  1. Well Bwana:
    I am going to have SERIOUSLY disagree with you. Today, we needed John Hager more than before. In the 8 months John had the job he raised $6 Million, so RPV is back in the black and in good financial shape, more than Gillespie or his predecessors have done, with the exception of Don Huffman. Mr. Fredericks reputation with the Northern Virgina business community, is not the best. I have it on reliable authority that the entire Virginia Business Community has gotten the message from their Northern Virginia brethern and will treat him in kind. So, that means RPV will be broke again with no way to support their candidates who are out on the front lines under the Party banner.
    I truly feel that it is a bad situation made worse and that a great disservice has been done to a good man and a tremendous Party stalwart. Unfortunately, this is one Bwana, where we do not see it the same way ….at all!!! To lay all of the losses and the current situation all at John’s feet is wrong. Change for Change sake is not always a good thing. Time will tell which one of us is right.
    Glad you are on the mend and that you are beginning to get around unassisted.


  2. I see your point…but I don’t think I suggested that change for the sake of change is a godo thing.

    A time will come in the near future where the business community will get to decide whether they are better served helping the party led by the punk who beat Hager or sitting on their hands and having the general assembly and the governor’s mansion filled with folks who have shown that their first inclination is to tax…and tax…and tax.

    As far as fundraising goes, I take your numbers on face value. However, during that time the GOP lost seats in the general assembly, there was no leadership out there trying to settle these internecine fights that helped lost the state senate. We still don’t know how the legal actions in Frederick County are going to impact that senate seat in the long run. RPV still does not have a coherent communication strategy in place and the RPV is not staying apace with technology developments.

    Mr. Hager might be a skilled fundraiser, but there is more to leadership than raising $$…and I am not seeing where he is scoring well across the board.

  3. Great post, in general. I wish you well for a speedy recovery. Why didn’t you do both at the same time? I had a friend at church who did, and he was up and around in half the time, had they been done separately.

    However, I disagree that the balloting problems were a function of technology. My only complaint was the lack of knowledge that Berry’s votes were nullities. That was a function of ignorance, not a lack of technology.

    Balloting wasn’t even the biggest problem in the execution of the Convention.

  4. On the knees front, I am middle aged and significantly overweight, and my physician had concerns about mobility and recovery if I had both done at the same time. His comment was that if I was 18 he’d had done both, but no medical professional I spoke with was in favor of me doing both at the same time.

    Others probably can do both at the same time with minimal problems…this just seemed the best course for me.

  5. Bwana:
    Number one, the change for change sake was the feeling of the some of the delegates at the convention, not you ( I along with our friend from Emporia were there and you were not!!!) I will also take issue with you on the fact of losing seats. In the 34th Senate race, for example the Republican candidate ran the “Connie Morella Campaign Playbook…I am more liberal then the Democrat”. In Senator O’Brien lost a very close race, in precincts he had won in election prior to this past years and had he worked them with the same zeal he worked in the prior years, he may have won, but he left them alone. The lost house seats you can blame on lack of leadership by the Speaker and the Caucus, and the general anti – Bush/Republican voter feeling in general…not the party Chairman who took over in the middle of this mess!
    You wanted change and that is exactly what you got…good luck!!!


  6. Well, I had no idea that staying at home and getting the kids to soccer games, basketball games, and other events was a crime…which is the implication from above. RPV represents the folks who were there and who were not there…next time you can watch the WMD and I will go.

    Change at the top is needed, and unfortunately John Hager was unwilling or unable to see his way clear to the changes needed. As far as leadership goes, I have a hunch Party Chairman like Dick Obenshain would disagree with your assertion that the Party Chair carries no blame for the loss of legislative seats.

    And that is before we get to the failure of the party to stay competitive or even competent on the technical front…and as far as leadership goes, I wonder how many votes John Hager lost by the way he handled the temporary chairman question on friday night, or the seating mishaps on saturday? Now I understand that one of the perquisites of home field advantage is slamming the other guy-you know, like giving your opponents delegation far fewer seats than they have delegates. Fair enough-but if you want to play rough and tumble, then you have to be willing to dance to the tune you chose. There are many stories coming out of the convention of technical snafu’s, bad planning, bad customer service by the RPV staff, and the like. Mr. Hager had every chance in the world to impress the delegates and failed to take advantage of the simplest and easiest for him to control-make the convention a smooth running operation.

    We all wanted change…any GOP type who has watched the bumbling at RPV adn the loss of seats and elections has to want change. I also think most of us wanted John Hager to stay as chairman. However, it is clear from the run up to the convention and the manner the convention was run that both could not happen.

  7. Bwana:
    Taking care of your family is not a crime. I was just reminding you that I was an actual witness to the events of the convention and that is all. If you were offended by that then, I am sorry.
    Great, you want change, then that is exactly what you got and I hope you will be happy with it. I am not as optimistic about the potential results of this so-called change. But hey, I am in the minority. A good friend of mine once said, “Sometimes it has to get worse before it gets better!” from my perspective, that is where we are for awhile.
    Good Luck and speedy recovery,


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