Friday, November 30, 2012

Hop along

Hoppers Bar & Grill in Waconia (apparently there was nothing available in Sioux Falls, SD) was the site of the latest 1500 ESPN NFL trivia night, sponsored by Coors Light.

I had already been to Happy Hour in downtown Minneapolis in honor of a co-worker's birthday, so bar hopping to Hoppers seemed rather apropos.
 
As usual, it began with MCs Tom & Phil asking ten questions, with 60 seconds to jot down each answer. Three of the eight participants aced the initial written exam, myself included in that, so it was on to the main tournament.

In the first "Family Feud" style round, I took on Noah, a guy whom I trounced a few weeks ago.

This was a best two of three, with each question having only one answer.

First question: Who leads the NFL in sacks this season?

Noah (buzzing in first): Clay Matthews. Incorrect.

Brad (for the point): J.J. Watt. Incorrect.
Noah (for the point): Aldon Smith. Correct!

Noah leads, 1-0.

Question two: Hall of Fame running back Jim Brown was a two sport star at Syracuse......

Noah (buzzing in early): Football and Track. Incorrect.

The rest of the question: ....What sport other than football did Brown play?

Brad (for the point): Lacrosse. Correct!

1-1 tie.

Question three: Dan Devine was coach of the Green Bay Packers.....

Noah (taking a chance with the early buzz in): Notre Dame.

.......from 1971 until 1974. He left the team in 1975 to coach which college program? Notre Dame is correct! Noah moves on to the semi finals.

And for the record, Brendan Byrne won it all again this week. He was a 10-time winner last year and won for the fifth time this season. He's called the Rain Man of NFL trivia for a reason.

With that, there are three more Thursday evenings for me to pick up my first championship. If nothing else, I would think I'd be able to parlay these excursions into some sort of Coors Light endorsement deal.

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Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Looking to 2014

Let's face it: with the Democrats having full control of the Minnesota Legislature, it's rather difficult not looking ahead to the MN GOP's 2014 prospects. With the entire MN House and Little Lord Fauntleroy Governor Mark Dayton having to face the voters in two years, speculation is already abounding as to whom the Republicans would put forth to challenge Dayton.

Steve Hensley at the Real Capitol View floated an intriguing possibility.

On Friday night, retiring State Representative John Kriesel lit up his large following on Facebook when he posted a photo showing a Kriesel for Governor logo.

According to his post, Kriesel received a text message from a friend asking if he was going to run for governor after the friend saw the logo on a different Facebook wall.

As of Monday morning the post had 301 “likes” and 114 comments.

Rather than thanking friends for the encouragement or shutting down any speculation immediately, Kriesel ended the post with a simple question: “What do you think?”

When contacted by the Real Capitol View, the Cottage Grove resident wasn’t willing to close the door on running.

“I would never rule out a run for governor, and the encouragement and support that I’ve received has been flattering, but I absolutely love my new job working for Anoka County Veterans Services and I’ve enjoyed being able to spend more time with my wife and sons now that I’m out of politics,” said Kriesel.

He added, “I chose not to seek relection to the Minnesota House of Representatives so I could spend more time with my family. A 2014 gubernatorial run would take away from that.”
 
If Kriesel does indeed run and somehow emerges as the endorsed candidate of the MN GOP (the party which actually honors the endorsement process) in 2014, I will support him 100%. Defeating Mark Dayton is the absolute top priority. On the surface, Kriesel would have some significant statewide appeal. To those who have become quite weary with the perceived lack of conviction amongst politicians, Kriesel is a welcome change given his distaste for political expediency. Star Tribune columnist Jon Tevlin pretty well summed it up when he described Kriesel as "the only representative in the Minnesota Legislature who believes two men should be able to marry each other AND shoot someone who trespasses on their property." Kriesel was also perhaps the most outspoken Minnesota Republican in favor of a Vikings stadium bill, which passed in May. With an occasional willingness to strongly divert from the majority of his caucus, Kriesel has become a media darling amongst the Lori Sturdevant crowd.

Alas, if Kriesel is indeed the Republican to challenge Dayton in 2014, he will learn the same lesson fellow war hero John McCain learned when he became to GOP nominee for President in 2008: you're a media favorite until you're in a position to defeat one of their beloved Democrats.

My friend and Northern Alliance Radio Network colleague Mitch Berg sums it up best in a section of the irrefutable "Berg's Laws."


Berg’s Eleventh Law of Inverse Viability: The conservative liberals “respect” for their “conservative principles” will the the one that has the least chance of ever getting elected.

The McCain Corollary To Berg’s Eleventh Law: If that respected conservative ever develops a chance of getting elected, that “respect” will turn to blind unreasoning hatred overnight.

The Huckabee Corollary the McCain Corolloary To Berg’s Eleventh Law: The Republican that the media covers most intensively before the nomination for any office will be the one that the liberals know they have the best chance of beating after the nomination, and/or will most harm the GOP if nominated.


In the end, it's the MN Republican party activists who will hash out which GOP candidate will represent the party in the gubernatorial race. I have a difficult time believing a candidate who alienated social conservatives (though endeared himself to libertarians) by voting "no" on the marriage amendment and rankled fiscal conservatives when voting "yes" for a Vikings stadium would be the party favorite. But if he somehow gets to the general election, I doubt the media would cover for Kriesel when it comes to a couple of his highly publicized verbal battles. Kriesel's ability to handle criticism (fairly or unfairly) might be called in to question in light of his spat with fellow Republican legislator Mary Kiffmeyer as well as his back and forth with a MN Senate staffer, which eventually lead to the staffer's firing.


As someone who has been a delegate to the past two state conventions, I'll just say I'm willing to keep my options open.

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Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Free expression for we, not for ye

By now, many of you have heard of an artist's depiction of President Barack Obama in the motif of Jesus Christ being crucified on the cross.





The composer of this piece, a Michael D’Antuono, essentially dismissed the outrage of Christians by saying his "First Amendment rights should override someone’s hurt feelings.” The same dismissive attitude was conveyed when people expressed their dismay over "artwork" which depicted a crucifix being soaked in a jar of urine. And while the Obama administration strongly condemned a You Tube video defiling the prophet Muhammad (which they falsely used to blame for the 9/11/2012 attacks on our consulate in Benghazi, Libya), their silence was deafening in regards to the "Piss Christ" artwork.

With all that in mind, one could persuasively concoct the following logic: If depicting a certain human as Jesus Christ (our Lord and Savior) is not offensive and we needn't be all uptight over the degradation of the symbol of Christ's sacrifice, then why can't a model of the aforementioned human be soaked in urine?

I'm not a big fan of radio guy Glenn Beck, but I believe he came up with a brilliant idea in which to express his own free speech.







In response to Beck's "free expression", I'm sure we'll be treated to a plethora of indignation from the same crowd who used such verbiage as racist, war monger, murderous thug, Idiot in Chief, etc. when referring to President George W. Bush.

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Monday, November 26, 2012

Heartbreak

This past weekend, NBA Hall of Famer (and University of Minnesota alum) Kevin McHale and wife Lynn suffered the worst nightmare a parent can imagine. Their daughter Sasha, who had been battling lupus, passed away on Saturday. She was just 23-years old.

I've actually gotten to know Lynn a little bit over the past couple of years, having seen her at a handful of social functions around the Twin Cities. Always beaming with a smile, it is positively heart-breaking to think of the anguish she, along with loving husband Kevin, must be feeling at this point. Two weeks ago I sent her a personal email when I heard Kevin was taking a leave from his job as coach of the NBA's Houston Rockets to tend to a "family matter." I expressed that I would pray for her family despite my not knowing the specifics surrounding the aforementioned family matter. She sent a short reply thanking me for the sentiments. It wasn't until Sasha's passing that it was publicly revealed she had been battling lupus.

While praying for peace and comfort for the McHale family Sunday, I felt on my heart to make a donation to the Lupus Foundation of Minnesota. I did so yesterday afternoon, dedicating my gift to the memory of Sasha McHale.

For more information on this disease, or if you too would like to make a donation, please visit the web site www.lupusmn.org

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Sunday, November 25, 2012

Some say better things will come our way.....

Having sufficiently recovered from my Tryptophan stupor, I will be rarin' to go for this week's edition of The Closer, which will air 1:00 until 3:00 pm Central.

At 1:15, I'll be joined via phone by conservative activist Ali Akbar. In the nearly three weeks since the election took place, Ali has spent almost every waking hour opining on what Republicans must do to puncture the false narratives of being a monochromatic party.

We'll also look back at the week in the news, including the nonsensical reaction to Sen. Marco Rubio's answer of a question regarding the age of Earth. Also, a 30-year old Massachusetts woman finds out the hard way that posting something on the Internet cannot be easily wiped away.


So please give me a call at (651) 289-4488 if you'd like to discuss any of the topics I plan on addressing. You can also text comments/questions to (651) 243-0390.

You can listen live in the Twin Cities at AM 1280 on your radio dial. In and out of the Minneapolis-St Paul area, you can listen to the program on the Internet by clicking this link.

For mobile phone users, there are cool apps available for iphone, Blackberry and Android!

And if you're so inclined, follow along on Twitter at #narn or "Like" our Facebook page.

Until then.....

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Friday, November 23, 2012

The Chronicles of NARN: Higher Ed

Since its inception (March 2004 to be exact), the Northern Alliance Radio Network has aired weekends on local station AM 1280 WWTC (The Patriot). Since about October 2004, when I first learned of this local version of weekend conservative programming, it has been appointment radio for me personally.

As certain members of the NARN have come and gone, Ed Morrissey, along with Mitch Berg and King Banaian, have been stalwarts of the group. While Mitch and Ed continued to he heard Saturdays 1-3 pm on AM 1280, King moved to our sister station, AM 1570, where he can also be heard on Saturdays, from 9:00 until 11 a.m. So when I came aboard the NARN in June 2011, I echoed a certain sentiment of comedian George Gobel. In 1969, Gobel appeared on The Tonight Show and sat in the presence of host Johnny Carson as well as legendary guests Dean Martin and Bob Hope. Upon looking around, Gobel queried "Did you ever get the feeling that the world was a tuxedo and you were a pair of brown shoes?"

On Wednesday evening, I received a call from Mitch regarding the latest change in NARN programming. It appears that Ed has chosen to move on, a decision he explained via his regular blog Hot Air.  


So why leave? I’ve decided to take on some new pursuits, especially in catechesis and service within my faith. That will take a considerable amount of time over the next couple of years at least — and perhaps longer than that. That means I need to clear some time for myself and my family on the weekends.

I’d like to thank The Patriot and their team for nine years of great support. The station manager, Ron Stone, was sorry to see me go, but tremendously understanding and supportive of my decision. Ron asked me to come back occasionally as a guest, as did Mitch, and I look forward to doing so. For now, though, Mitch will do the show solo — and I know he’s going to do a terrific job.

Ed definitely brought a lot of national credibility to the NARN, given his excellent work at the wildly popular Hot Air. In fact, if you listen to conservative titan Rush Limbaugh on a regular basis, you'll hear him cite Ed's writings quite often.

It was October 2003 when Ed threw his proverbial hat into the blogging ring. I've heard Ed say that he began this venture merely due to the fact that one can write only so many "Letters to the Editor." Hence, Captain's Quarters was born.

I don't know that Ed looked at this milieu as anything more than channeling his inner pundit. However, in 2005, Ed was unwittingly launched into national prominence when he blogged about a scandal involving Canadian politics. Since Canada does not have the same free speech privileges that we have in America, the Canadian media was not allowed to cover the story. However, Ed took the reins on "Adscam", which alleged the Liberal Party of Canada funneled government funds through Canadian advertising firms. As such, Ed's blog became the only source of information regarding Adscam for Canadians to access. At the height of this story, Ed's blog received close to half million visitors per day, about 10-15 times his normal traffic. From there, Ed became an in-demand national speaker and conservative pundit for some of the more prominent conservative media outlets. He then parlayed that notoriety into a full time blogging position with Hot Air, where he has been since March 2008. Not bad for a guy who, merely five years prior to that, looked at blogging as a hobby outside of his work as a Call Center manager for a security alarm company.

Despite his escalating success and higher profile, Ed has remained as down-to-earth as when I first met him in early 2005. In fact, when at Right Online a year-and-a-half ago, I was borderline amused at all the people lining up to talk to Ed after one of the breakout sessions he conducted. Folks were overjoyed at having their picture taken with Ed as well as being able to have a one-on-one conversation for just two minutes. Not surprisingly to me, Ed was very accommodating to all the requests and interactions.


Even though I have rarely seen Ed more than once per month, I will miss his presence on the NARN. He and Mitch were a fantastic duo and balanced each other superbly. With any justice, they would have their own nationally syndicated gig on a daily basis. But Ed is making this decision to leave the Saturday NARN broadcast for exactly the reasons I'd expect: his commitment to his Lord as well as to his family. With that in mind, I wish him nothing but the best.

Godspeed, Ed.

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Thursday, November 22, 2012

Heart of Stone


When are people going to learn that when you post things on the internet it's next to impossible to make them disappear? Unfortunately, some learn the hard way in the fact it can yield potentially ruinous consequences.

A Massachusetts woman is facing enormous criticism for a disgraceful act at one of America's most revered locations. The woman went to Arlington National Cemetery, mocked a sign near the Tomb of the Unknowns, and then posted that photo online.

Thousands of tourists visit Arlington Cemetery every year to pay their respects to this country's fallen soldiers. But last month, 30-year-old Lindsey Stone photographed herself doing something very different.

In the picture, Lindsey can be seen 'flipping off' the Tomb of the Unknowns and pretending to scream in front of a sign requesting silence and respect.



From what I understand, this was merely one of a series of zany photographs that Ms. Stone and a co-worker were taking on their little excursion. Apparently the theme was "challenging authority." In fact, Ms. Stone made the following declaration on her Facebook page when people took umbrage with the above photo.





In this era known as the Information Age, the name of Ms. Stone's employer was soon ascertained. LIFE, Inc., an organization which serves learning disabled adults, was besieged with demands that Ms. Stone and her co-worker (and co-conspirator), Jamie Schuh, be fired as employees of the organization. There was even a Facebook page started, entitled Fire Lindsey Stone.

By approximately 6:00 PM Central Time Wednesday, LIFE released an official statement on the action they have taken.

We wish to announce that the two employees recently involved in the Arlington Cemetery incident are no longer employees of LIFE. Again, we deeply regret any disrespect to members of the military and their families. The incident and publicity has been very upsetting to the learning disabled population we serve. To protect our residents, any comments, however well-intentioned, will be deleted. We appreciate your concern and understanding as we focus on the care of our community.

Naturally these women will have their apologists. You're likely to read/hear something along the lines of "Those soldiers in Arlington National Cemetery laid down their lives for freedom yet these women aren't able to express themselves freely. HYPOCRISY I tell ya!!!"

What people often seem to misunderstand about freedom of speech/expression is such exercise thereof is free without fear of retribution from government. LIFE, while technically a non-profit organization, is a business which has caretakers (e.g. Board of Directors, CEO, etc.) who make decisions. Obviously said decisions are made in the spirit of maximizing the effectiveness of the enterprise they oversee. There's no doubt that LIFE was suffering a huge public relations nightmare as a result of the behavior of the two employees in question. Given the sensitive nature of their enterprise (i.e. caring for the learning disabled), a bad vibe surrounding the organization would likely be a detriment to the residents. In the end, it appeared LIFE had little recourse.

I don't believe Ms. Stone or Ms. Schuh should have to suffer endlessly for what was a horrific lapse in judgement. Unfortunately for them, the court of public opinion in the Information Age can be a rather harsh magistrate.

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Tuesday, November 20, 2012

The game never ends

Goodness sakes, are we still playing these stupid nonsensical "gotcha" games where the attempt is to frame a question in an effort make a politician look foolish? I guess it doesn't have to be campaign season for such bilge to take place.

The latest exploit is over Florida Senator Marco Rubio (a rising young star in the GOP) not knowing how old the earth is.

GQ: How old do you think the Earth is?

Marco Rubio: I'm not a scientist, man. I can tell you what recorded history says, I can tell you what the Bible says, but I think that's a dispute amongst theologians and I think it has nothing to do with the gross domestic product or economic growth of the United States. I think the age of the universe has zero to do with how our economy is going to grow. I'm not a scientist. I don't think I'm qualified to answer a question like that. At the end of the day, I think there are multiple theories out there on how the universe was created and I think this is a country where people should have the opportunity to teach them all. I think parents should be able to teach their kids what their faith says, what science says. Whether the Earth was created in 7 days, or 7 actual eras, I'm not sure we'll ever be able to answer that. It's one of the great mysteries.
I think snark master Dave "Iowahawk" Burge said it best when he stated he's "less worried about people who believe in the Biblical creation story than people who believe in the Keynesian creation story."

By the way, did a certain Democrat candidate for President receive as much scrutiny when the following exchange took place in April 2008? (Hint: NO!!!!!!!!)

Q: Senator, if one of your daughters asked you—and maybe they already have—“Daddy, did god really create the world in 6 days?,” what would you say?

A: What I've said to them is that I believe that God created the universe and that the six days in the Bible may not be six days as we understand it … it may not be 24-hour days, and that's what I believe. I know there's always a debate between those who read the Bible literally and those who don't, and I think it's a legitimate debate within the Christian community of which I'm a part. My belief is that the story that the Bible tells about God creating this magnificent Earth on which we live—that is essentially true, that is fundamentally true. Now, whether it happened exactly as we might understand it reading the text of the Bible: That, I don't presume to know.





Here's the burning question I have. Does either man's belief in the age of the Earth improve (or deter) his ability to put together a substantive plan to stem the growth of our out-of-control National Debt? No? Then I soooooo don't care a flip.

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Sunday, November 18, 2012

Play the game. You know you can't quit until it's won...

The Vikings don't play today, so I won't checking espn.com incessantly during today's broadcast of The Closer. As usual, I'll be on from 1:00 until 3:00 pm Central Time.

A lot going on this past week, including Former CIA director Gen. David Petraeus giving his testimony regarding the attack on the American consulate in Libya on 9/11/12.

Ah, and the post mortems for Republicans continue nearly two weeks after Election Day. Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal was very forthright in what the GOP needs to do to win future elections, in addition to conveying a few things of what not to do.

We'll also look at the local political scene, including Gov. Dayton expressing his disappointment in how the Minnesota Vikings intend on raising some of the money for their share of the cost of the new stadium. Also, the Minnesota contingent of "Ron Paul Republicans" gathered yesterday to discuss the future of the MN GOP.


So please give me a call at (651) 289-4488 if you'd like to discuss any of the topics I plan on addressing. You can also text comments/questions to (651) 243-0390.

You can listen live in the Twin Cities at AM 1280 on your radio dial. In and out of the Minneapolis-St Paul area, you can listen to the program on the Internet by clicking this link.

For mobile phone users, there are cool apps available for iphone, Blackberry and Android!

And if you're so inclined, follow along on Twitter at #narn or "Like" our Facebook page.

Until then.....

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Friday, November 16, 2012

In need of a rabbit's foot

Bunny's Bar & Grill in St. Louis Park was the venue for last evening's Coors Light Thursday Night football trivia.

The place was jam packed and a season high number of participants played in the first round written quiz. I didn't have one of my better qualifying rounds but it was good enough to be seeded 12th out of 24 teams.

Since there were so many teams, I had to participate in a one round play in. The question this round was "Earlier this week, which player did Vikings GM Rick Spielman indicate he had 100% confidence in his play?" I buzzed in first and answered Christian Ponder, which was correct. On to the final 16!

In the sweet 16, I took on a team called "Big Beauties." In the bracketed tourney, the two sides stand at a podium with a buzzer in hand. In this round it's one question, one answer.

Question: In his NFL career, WR Jake Reed played for only one team other than the Vikings....

Brad (quick with the trigger finger): New Orleans Saints. Correct!

Incidentally, my opponent sat there utterly stupefied, having no idea what hit them. Anyhow, on to the quarterfinals.

In the round of eight it's once again a one question, one answer format. This round, my opponent was "TJBPJ."

Question: The largest margin of victory in an NFL regular season game is 59 points. Name the last team to lose by that margin?

Brad (barely buzzing in first): Tennessee Titans. Correct!

I was moving on to the semifinals where the stakes are higher and the questions much tougher. My opponent would be none other than Brendan Byrne, who won the tournament ten times last season and three times thus far this year. I had faced Brendan four previous times with nary a victory. Oh well, in order to be the best you have to beat the best, so I relished the opportunity.

In the semis, it's best 2 out of 3 category questions.

Question 1: In the 1980s, 10 NFL QBs threw for at least 20,000 yards. Name them.

Brendan (buzzing in first): Joe Montana. Correct.
Brad: John Elway. Correct.
Brendan: Neil Lomax. Correct.
Brad: Phil Simms. Correct.
Brendan: Dan Fouts. Correct.
Brad: Warren Moon. Incorrect. Turns out, Moon threw for "only" 18,300 in the decade since he didn't start his NFL career until 1984.

1-0, Brendan.


Question 2: The Green Bay Packers are the only publicly owned franchise in the NFL, which means there are 31 different majority owners. Name them.

Brad (buzzing in first): Zygi Wilf. Correct.
Brendan: Jerry Jones. Correct.
Brad: Bob Kraft. Correct.
Brendan: Dan Snyder. Correct.
Brad: Jeffrey Lurie. Correct.
Brendan: Bob McNair. Correct.
Brad: Tom Benson. Correct.
Brendan: Bud Adams. Correct.
Brad: Pat Bowlen. Correct.
Brendan: Steve Biscotti. Correct.
Brad: Arthur Blank. Correct.
Brendan: Alex Spanos. Correct.
Brad: Paul Allen. Correct.
Brendan: Mike Brown. Correct.
Brad: John Mara. Correct.
Brendan: Dan Rooney. Correct.
Brad: Bill Bidwill. Correct.
Brendan: Jerry Richardson. Correct.
Brad: Lerner (Al Lerner was the Browns owner until his death in 2002; his son then took over the team). Incorrect. Steve Lerner sold the team four months ago.
Brendan (for the win): Ralph Wilson. Correct!

Brendan moves on to the finals with a 2-0 win.

And yes, Brendan won in the final round, making him a 14-time champ over two seasons.

I'm beginning to feel like the Washington Generals to Brendan's Harlem Globetrotters.

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Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Miscalculatin' Dayton

When the Minnesota Vikings stadium battle reached a fever pitch at the legislature earlier this year, it was Governor Mark Dayton who was lauded for allegedly showing tremendous leadership in ultimately securing a bill. Who knew that "leadership" was little more than the state's chief executive poking his head above his self-exiled cubicle and emphasizing we need a stadium "for the people?" I guess we've set a pretty low bar for what constitutes leadership in Minnesota state government.

When the final numbers came out, the state would be responsible for $348 million (via taxes on electronic pull tabs - a pipe dream), Hennepin County $150 million and the Vikings organization $477 million.

Apparently the Governor is less than thrilled at how the Vikings organization plans on raising a percentage of its financial obligation.

In a letter to Minnesota Vikings owners Zygi and Mark Wilf on Tuesday, Dayton expressed concerns over the team's decision to play at least one home game in London while its new stadium is built and exploration of personal seat licenses (PSLs) to help fund the team's portion of the $1 billion project.

"The project's strong support came from many regular Minnesotans, not just rich Minnesotans, because they believed the Vikings are also their team," Dayton wrote. "If a new stadium were to betray that trust, it would be better that it not be built."

Yet another area where Gov. Dayton is obsessed with the rich. If he isn't trying to co-opt their earned wealth, he's hellbent on keeping them from enjoying prime seats at an NFL game. Oh and by the way, Governor? One already has to have a solid amount of dispensable income just to be able to have a family outing to a Vikings game. Like it or not, the already exorbitant cost of an NFL excursion is not exactly conducive to "regular Minnesotans."

The Governor's letter also featured what appeared to be a stunning admission of ignorance on his part (emphasis mine). 


Dayton told the Wilfs in his letter that "I am greatly distressed by these developments and the future they portend. We negotiated in good faith. Not surprisingly, given the project's magnitude and complexity, some details were not fully understood and some differences still remain. They must be resolved consistent with Minnesota standards and values."

Ah yes. The old progressive Democrat mantra of "we need to pass it to see what's in it." Is it any shock that a politician who was nicknamed "The Blunderer" while in the U.S. Senate would sign a bill as a member of the executive branch of government without fully comprehending its contents?

The Vikings organization issued a prompt response to Dayton's concerns.

The Minnesota Vikings greatly appreciate Governor Mark Dayton's support for the new multi-purpose stadium for the Vikings and the State of Minnesota. However, we are disappointed by his recent letter to the team, which does not recognize a key component of the stadium agreement struck by the Vikings, State and Local leaders this past spring.

The stadium bill, and the prior term sheet, that was negotiated with the Vikings over the last two legislative sessions by the Governor's own representatives and legislative leaders, includes provisions that expressly authorize the sale of stadium builder's licenses and include the proceeds of any sale in the project budget. Stadium builder's licenses were vetted by the Legislature, testified to by Vikings and State of Minnesota negotiators, and most importantly, specifically reflected in the stadium legislation that was passed and signed by the Governor.

The Vikings look forward to discussing this issue and moving forward with the agreement that was completed after many long years of effort.

Translation: Suck it up, Sally. You signed it. You live with it.

In regards to the Governor himself, the phrase "Hoist with his own petard" comes to mind.

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Monday, November 12, 2012

Not much more to add

Look, I'm just a peon blogger. As such, there's not much new or original insight I can give regarding the resignation of CIA Director Gen. David Petraeus, who left his post upon revelations of an extramarital affair.

However, I do have one question

Has Petraeus's mistress, writer Paula Broadwell, retained the services of Gloria Allred as yet?

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Sunday, November 11, 2012

It's understood, I had to reach ya. I let the wheel of fortune spin...

The inaugural post-election edition of The Closer will take place today, starting at 1:00 pm and going until 3:00 Central Time. While America chose the status quo on Election Day, Minnesota decided to turn over a proverbial blank check to Little Lord Fauntleroy Governor Mark Dayton. We'll definitely address both areas and try desperately to extract a silver lining.

At 1:15, the official political wonk of The Closer, GOP strategist Matt Mackowiak, will aid in the post mortem. I'll get Matt's insights on where it all went wrong for GOP candidate Mitt Romney and what the party has to do moving forward. Since the balance of power in Congress remains the same (Democrat-controlled Senate; Republican-controlled House), what is the GOP's best option to assist in averting the "fiscal cliff?"

At 2:00, friend of the show (and MN State Senator-elect) Karin Housley will check in via phone. Karin was one of the few bright spots for the Minnesota GOP, as she eked out a 1 point victory (631 votes to be exact) in MN Senate District 39.


So please give us a call at (651) 289-4488 if you'd like to discuss any of the topics I plan on addressing. You can also text comments/questions to (651) 243-0390.

You can listen live in the Twin Cities at AM 1280 on your radio dial. In and out of the Minneapolis-St Paul area, you can listen to the program on the Internet by clicking this link.

For mobile phone users, there are cool apps available for iphone, Blackberry and Android!

And if you're so inclined, follow along on Twitter at #narn or "Like" our Facebook page.

Until then.....

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Friday, November 09, 2012

Women there don't treat you mean in Abilene.....




Bar Abilene in the Uptown area was the site for my latest exploits of Thursday Night NFL trivia. On this night, there were the most participants (12) this contest has witnessed since the trivia season got started last month.

On the written portion of the trivia contest, I scored 15 of a possible 18, which was good for only a #8 seed.

As such, I had to participate in the "play-in" round, taking on a guy named Rhett.

It was a one answer, winnner-moves-on question: In his career as Vikings QB, Christian Ponder has targeted which receiver the most? Kyle Rudolph, Devin Aromashadu or Michael Jenkins?

Brad (buzzing in first): Kyle Rudolph. Incorrect.
Rhett: Aromashadu. Incorrect
Brad: Uhhhh.....Michael Jenkins. Correct!

Brad moves on (good thing I took my ginkgo biloba).


Next round, best 2 of 3. Since I'm the #8 seed, I'm opposed by the #1 seed, a guy named Noah.

First question: Former Lions QB Charlie Batch now plays for which NFL team?

Brad (buzzing in first): Pittsburgh Steelers. Correct!

1-0, Brad

Second question: Which QB holds the record for most career completions in Super Bowl play?

Noah (buzzing in first): Terry Bradshaw. Incorrect.
Brad: Tom Brady. Correct!

Brad scores the upset with a 2-0 win!


On to the semifinals, where I take on a duo called Delmon for President. Now the stakes are raised, as it's not only best 2 of 3, but also the questions are category questions, which means there are mutliple answers.

First question: NFL Network's pregame show, NFL Gameday, has six panelists. Name them.

Brad (buzzing in first): Michael Irvin. Correct.
Delmon: Steve Mariucci. Correct.
Brad: Deion Sanders. Incorrect (Deion is on the panel for the postgame show).
Delmon: Warren Sapp. Correct.

1-0, Delmon.

Second question: Since 1990, the Green Bay Packers have had eight different players record at least 1,000 yards receiving in a season. Name them.

Brad (buzzing in first): Jordy Nelson. Correct.
Delmon: Greg Jennings. Correct.
Brad: Sterling Sharpe. Correct.
Delmon: Donald Driver. Correct.
Brad: Antonio Freeman. Correct.
Delmon: Jermichael Finley. Incorrect.

Brad ties it up at 1-1!

Third and final question to move on to the final round. There have been 8 QBs who have thrown for at least 3 touchdowns in a Monday Night Football game five different times. Name them.

Delmon (buzzing in first): Brett Favre. Correct.
Brad: Drew Brees. Correct.
Delmon: Terry Bradshaw. Correct.
Brad: Dan Marino. Correct.
Delmon: Peyton Manning. Correct.
Brad: Dan Fouts. Incorrect.

Delmon moves on to the finals with a 2-1 win.


After about 10 tries, I feel as though I'm about to breakthrough. Let's hope I do so before I start purchasing stock in Coors.

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Wednesday, November 07, 2012

Election digestion

My friend and Northern Alliance Radio Network colleague Mitch Berg summed it up much better than I ever could. And yes, I endorse the following:

So, Obama, Dayton and DFL voters: you got your wish.

So when your job goes away because a company moves to another state (and I know at least one major MN employer that's planning exactly that)? When your company decides to move its plant to Mexico, Canada or offshore? See this tiny violin?

Health insurance premiums going up 30%? Suck it up, lil' camper.

Tytler said "Democracy can only survive until the majority discovers they can vote themselves largesse from the public treasury" - meaning "the minority". And that's just what happened tonight.

Imperfect as Romney was, he at least realized there was a fiscal cliff coming; between him and Ryan, there was at least a notion of how to deal with it.

Now? Unlike Greece, there is no Germany to come along and bail the US out. The depression that will follow will make the Great Depression seem like the Dotcom deflation.

The main order of business right now, if you're smart (and that rules out a small majority of our population as of tonight) is to get yourselves and your families ready for what's about to happen.

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Initial reaction

Yes, I am thoroughly disappointed in how my political party, the GOP, got clobbered in the Presidential race and the Minnesota state legislative races Tuesday. I'm not being hyperbolic when I say that I believe the next four years of a Barack Obama presidency will radically transform America to the point it may never return to prominence. The same can be said for my home state with far left Governor Mark Dayton being given a proverbial blank check for the 2013 budget cycle now that Democrats control both chambers of the legislature.

Count those as two more predictions where I desperately hope I'm mistaken.

Despite the seemingly dire situation in my home state as well as the entire country, I will not grow weary. In fact, I leave you with a poem which referred to 16th century Scottish sailor Sir Andrew Barton:

                    "Fight on, my men," Sir Andrew Said
                   "A little I'm hurt but not yet slain.
                    "I'll just lie down and bleed a while,
                    "And then I'll rise and Fight again.
 
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Tuesday, November 06, 2012

For once in your life, here's your miracle. Stand up and fight!

Yes, in the immortal words of Kenny Loggins, "THIS IS IT!!"

Election Day is in full swing and we'll be covering the festivities LIVE on AM 1280 The Patriot.

Beginning at 8:00 pm Central Time, my Northern Alliance Radio Network colleague Mitch Berg will join me on the air. We will broadcast on site at the Minnesota GOP election headquarters, located at the Hilton in Bloomington.

We'll analyze the returns, talk to candidates & party officials and, if the results are in our favor, have a glorious celebration!


You can listen live in the Twin Cities at AM 1280 on your radio dial. In and out of the Minneapolis-St Paul area, you can listen to the program on the Internet by clicking this link.

For mobile phone users, there are cool apps available for iphone, Blackberry and Android.

And if you're so inclined, follow along on Twitter at #narn or "Like" our Facebook page.



LET'S DO THIS!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Presidential prediction

Election Day is here!

Before I reveal my prediction for the 2012 presidential race, I think it's important that you know I try to be a very logical person while maintaining a sense of optimism. I do pride myself on being an optimist, but not to the point of being delusional. For example, I pretty much resigned myself to the fact that Barack Obama would defeat John McCain in the 2008 Presidential race. I believe I called it for Obama 338 electoral votes to 200 for McCain. Obama ended up prevailing 365-173, as I missed on one Congressional District in Nebraska (went for Obama) as well as the states of Indiana and North Carolina (predicted McCain; both went Obama).

The difference this time around is there is legitimate hope that the Republican candidate, Mitt Romney, can prevail this election cycle. At first it didn't look good as Romney consistently trailed the President in every conceivable poll once he became the official GOP nominee in late August.

Then the first debate happened in early October, where Romney soundly defeated a seemingly deferential and weary President Obama.

All of a sudden many people who were rather apathetic about this election (or self-described anti-Obama) suddenly became enthusiastic about Romney's candidacy (naming Paul Ryan to the ticket in August was a positive first step).

Recently I broke down Romney's path to 270 electoral votes. The way the polls have swung over the past month, I see a very plausible path to 261. However, without winning the state of Ohio, said path quickly becomes narrow. While I'm ripe for a surprise in seeing a Romney win in Ohio (18 EV, which would give him the win at 279) or Wisconsin (10, for a total of 271) he's never had a lead of any kind in either state. Although Iowa is suddenly looking feasible, the six electoral votes possibly gained there would get Romney to only 267.

With that in mind, here is my official prediction for the 2012 Presidential race:









As you can probably surmise, I desperately hope I'm wrong and that somehow Romney can flip Ohio, Wisconsin, Michigan or Pennsylvania.

I know I'll be paying rapt attention Tuesday night (possibly into Wednesday morning) until one of the candidates hits 270.

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Sunday, November 04, 2012

GET OUT THE VOTE, MINNESOTA!!!

Via my pal, Paul Carlson:

Ok, lets try this... You should go to either the AFP call center at the Marriott in Eden Prairie or the Double Tree in St Louis Park to do GOTV calls. The reason is efficiency. The Freedom Phone system works on an outbound predictive dialer. This dialer will call people at a far greater rate than standard dialing or even VoIP. SO, if you want to make your GOTV calls the most efficient, I suggest you call Christopher Moland in Eden Prarie at 612.655.0894 or Tony Burton at 612.655.0327

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Fray the strings, throw the shapes, hold your breath, listen!

Today will mark the final broadcast of The Closer before Election Day 2012. I think you know what topics we'll delve into on this day.

Of course I'll look at the Presidential race and how it's being called a statistical dead heat. Also, is it really possible the GOP Presidential candidate could take Minnesota for the first time since 1972? Well, Republican Vice Presidential candidate Paul Ryan is coming to Minneapolis this afternoon for a rally. Hmmm.

At 1:15, Stacey Stout will be checking in. Stacey is a first time political candidate and will be running in House District 43A, which includes Mahtomedi, Birchwood Village, Willernie, part of North St. Paul southern White Bear Lake and the northwest portion of Maplewood. I'll talk to Stacey about her background in law, specifically her stint in the US Department of Justice. I'll also broach the subject of the Minneapolis Star Tribune endorsing Stacey in the 43A race.

Then at 1:30, April King will be checking from the campaign trail. April is running for State Senate in SD 42, which is comprised of all or parts of Shoreview, Mounds View, Arden Hills, Vadnais Heights, Gem Lake, Little Canada, and Roseville. Despite earning a reputation as one of the hardest working candidates in the state of Minnesota, April is still in a very tough race, as she is opposed by long time DFL MN House member Bev Scalze.

As I write this, I have reached out to a number of other local GOP candidates who are in races considered "toss ups", and thus have offered a forum to make a last minute campaign pitch. With that in mind, there may well be additional candidates calling in from the trail.

If there was anything which could usurp campaign news in a given week, it would be Superstorm Sandy, which throttled the New York/New Jersey area this past week. We'll look back on a few items surrounding the storm and its aftermath as well as talk to West Freehold, NJ resident (and long time friend of mine) Jonathan Thacker. JT will be calling in at 2:00 to give us a first hand account of how he and fellow residents of the Garden State endured the storm and the long term prospects for the state's recovery.


So please give us a call at (651) 289-4488 if you'd like to discuss any of the topics I plan on addressing. You can also text comments/questions to (651) 243-0390.

You can listen live in the Twin Cities at AM 1280 on your radio dial. In and out of the Minneapolis-St Paul area, you can listen to the program on the Internet by clicking this link.

For mobile phone users, there are cool apps available for iphone, Blackberry and Android!

And if you're so inclined, follow along on Twitter at #narn or "Like" our Facebook page.

Until then.....

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Saturday, November 03, 2012

Quick Hits: Volume LXI (Superstorm Sandy edition)

-It seems a public relations nightmare was averted out east.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg and organizers of New York City Marathon cancelled the race Friday amid growing concerns that holding the event would divert resources from cleanup efforts in the wake of superstorm Sandy.

Hmmm. A mayor who feels it's his duty to implement a ban on baby formula in hospitals as well as prevent citizens from consuming 32 oz. sugary soft drinks was ready to impede said citizenry from performing basic functions like water consumption and bowel movements. Color me shocked.

Mr. Bloomberg had said as recently as early Friday afternoon that the marathon, scheduled to start Sunday morning, would go on and serve as a demonstration that the city was recovering from the storm and moving forward.

But other elected officials from around the city said holding it so soon after a major storm would be an insult to hard-hit residents still cleaning up and worried that it would get in the way of recovering from a storm that killed at least 41 people in New York City alone.

In light of the catastrophe wrought by "Sandy", Bloomberg endorsed the reelection of President Barack Obama because he has "taken major steps to reduce our carbon consumption." Too bad for Bloomberg that the aforementioned elected officials couldn't prevent him from enacting this self-inflicted wound as well.


- By now, many have referred to the President's comments of leaving "no one behind" after the superstorm devastated the east coast. He also went on to convey the following in his address at the American Red Cross:


"We make sure we respond as a Nation and remind ourselves that whenever an American is in need, all of us stand together to make sure that we're providing the help that's necessary."

Glen Doherty, Sean Smith, Ambassador Chris Stevens and Navy SEAL Tyrone Woods were not available for comment.


-It's not too hard to figure out that the Democrats have rarely met a tax or regulation they didn't like. With that in mind, does anyone else see the irony in the following statement made by President Obama in regards to providing aid to those affected by "Sandy?"

"We are not going to tolerate red tape, we are not going to tolerate bureaucracy."
Sounds to me as if the President is making an unwitting admission that the Federal government is indeed a monstrosity, a drumbeat we conservatives have been sounding for....uh....ever.

It's a shame it takes continual catastrophic events to learn these hard lessons of more not necessarily being better. With Superstorm Sandy, we seemed to have learned little from the hardships endured in the wake of Hurricane Katrina in 2005.

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Friday, November 02, 2012

Like a good Neighbor.....

It was my second stint of the season for NFL trivia last night. This time the site was actually somewhat amenable to the homestead as 1500 ESPN hosted the event at Neighbors Eatery and Saloon in Albertville.

Since there were only six participants, I was guaranteed to be in the main bracketed tournament. Nevertheless, I aced the written portion of the trivia contest, thus earning the #1 seed and a first round bye.

In the semifinal round, I took on a duo who called themselves "The Silver Bullets" (because the contest was sponsored by Coors Light. See what they did there?). This round was category questions, so whomever won 2 of 3 moved on to the finals. Since each question had an odd number of answers, the person buzzing in first had the advantage since they get to answer last.

First question: Name the three NFL Hall of Famers who played for both the Seahawks and Vikings.

Brad (buzzing in first): Carl Eller. Correct.
Silver Bullets: Warren Moon. Correct.
Brad (Thinking, Thinking. Takes a guess): Ron Yary. Incorrect.
Silver Bullets: John Randle. Correct!

1-0, Silver Bullets.

GAHHHHHHH!!!!! I was sooooooo disgusted with myself for missing the most obvious player that I almost walked away. Nonetheless, I gathered myself and geared up for the next question.

Next Question: There are currently five Notre Dame alumni on the Vikings roster. Name them.

Brad (buzzing in first): Kyle Rudolph. Correct.
Silver Bullets: John Carlson. Correct.
Brad: John Sullivan. Correct.
Silver Bullets: Harrison Smith. Correct.
Brad: Uhhhh.....Rhett Bollinger.  (WHO?!?!?!). Incorrect.
Silver Bullets: {Pass}
Brad: Uhh....I meant Rhett *Ellison.* Yeahhh, still wrong.

The correct answer was Robert Blanton. No point awarded.

Still 1-0, Silver Bullets.

Next Question: In 2011, the Vikings won a total of three games. Which teams did they defeat?

Brad (buzzing in first): Carolina Panthers. Correct.
Silver Bullets: Redskins. Correct.
Brad: Arizona Cardinals. Correct!

1-1 tie.

Next Question: Coach Pete Carroll has been an NFL head coach for three teams. Name them.

Silver Bullets (a split second quicker with the buzzer): Patriots. Correct.
Brad: Seahawks. Correct.
Silver Bullets: Jets. Correct!

Silver Bullets move on to the finals with a 2-1 victory.

Me? I went to a corner of the bar and cussed myself out over John freaking Randle.

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