Monday, March 24, 2008

What a way to go!

Just found these trailers for a new documentary.


Thursday, March 13, 2008

Who should be teaching whom?

I had a quirky question come into my head today. "Which states need to learn something from the national coordinated campaign, and which states need to tell the coordinated campaign to shut up and listen to the locals?"

Given the information that I have already collected, which is substantial over the past few years, I searched for the following bits of information:

What is the current level of partisan control in state legislatures in each of the 50 states?

How well did the 2004 Presidential nominee do in each of the 50 states?

Compare these two numbers for each state, and calculate the difference.

Then see who needs to teach whom. Care to see the results?

The data comes from the 2004 election results, available in a bunch of places, and some research done on Wikipedia and through state government websites. I often had to fill in the blanks on Wikipedia with what I found, and there is a great deal left to do. But I have enough to answer my question.

For the states where Kerry did better than the Democrats in the state legislatures, Florida tops the list. Kerry got 47.13% and Democrats only control 35% of the seats in the Florida House and Senate. The difference is -12.13%. Florida is also the only state where the negatives are higher than -10%. Florida Democrats have something to learn from the national campaign and other states.

On the other end, and this isn't really a surprise to me after watching things over the past 4 years, there are a total of 18 states where Democrats control at least 10% more seats than the percent of the vote that John Kerry got in his election. In eight of these states Kerry lost, the Democrats now have a majority. The only state where both the Presidential race and the State Leg seats are Red is in Oklahoma, but even there the local Democrats have a 12.35% advantage over the national campaign.

What is interesting is the state that did the best Kerry had no business losing. Arkansas. I know, there are a lot of "Conservative Democrats", and it's also the state where the Clinton political machine is oldest and strongest. But when the difference is 31.52%, I just shake my head and wonder.

Remember, I'm just looking at the numbers. I have only ever lived in Deep Blue Seattle. But I thought the question interesting, and the results even more so.

The full results are available on Google Spreadsheets. Please feel free to copy and let me know if you find any errors. I gathered most of the numbers from CNN and Wikipedia, since it was easiest to piggyback on research that others have already done. I don't think the statistics will change all that much after any minor correction.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

I'm not a groupie...

Just to be clear, I am not in any kind of worship mode for Obama or anyone else. I'm a grassroots organizer within the Democratic Party in Seattle. I saw 16,246 people show up on February 9th just in my North Seattle Legislative District, and I'm focused on trying to keep them engaged so we can actually get Universal Health Care, Out of Iraq, and everything else. I don't believe we put anyone into an office to solve our problems for us. We put people who we believe might listen to our voices when they make their decisions. Barack Obama is no better, and no worse, than Hillary Clinton. I do believe that he would listen more than she would, but that's my personal observation. Regardless, we need a supermajority in the House and Senate to be able to restore this country from the Reagan/Bush/Clinton/BushII years, and that's going to take a hell of a lot of work at every level of our government. I'm prepared to spend the rest of my life fighting for what I believe in, which is NOT welfare for all nor subsidies for the rich on the backs of the poor. The function of government is to build, maintain and sustain our physical, financial, legal and social infrastructure (the commons) so that people can reach for their potential without worrying about the ground collapsing beneath our feet. It is not to give handouts, nor is it to hold people back. But it's not up to our leaders to do this for us, it's our responsibility to do it no matter what our leaders say or do.

Monday, March 03, 2008


Please, if you can spare $5 or $10, please help me boost the candidate running in OH-08. The current holder of that seat is John Boehner, the Republican leader in the House. The challenger is Nicholas Von Stein. His email to use in Paypal is

Why do I, an activist in Seattle, care about this particular race?

The White House branded Pelosi's request for a federal grand jury to enforce the House subpeonas "truly contemptible." Pelosi's House Republican colleagues dismissed her request as "a partisan political stunt." White House spokesman Tony Fratto played the fear card and denounced Pelosi for trying to investigate loyal Americans instead of passing legislation that makes Americans safe by allowing the executive branch to spy without warrants. House GOP leader John Boehner's spokesperson accused Pelosi of making Americans unsafe by "pandering to the left-wing fever swamps of loony liberal activists."

Longshot, yeah. But it still feels good to send my money to the campaign going against the guy who doesn't give a darn about the law.

This is a global election

No kidding. Check this out:

Saturday, March 01, 2008