Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Stunning fall from grace

He was lauded as a comedian who could get laughs without resorting to gratuitous profanity.

He produced an animated television show featuring a group of Afro American kids navigating in and out of trouble, but the incidents were used as "teachable moments."

He created a landmark TV show which portrayed a black family with both mom and dad raising five kids while juggling very successful careers (an attorney and physician, respectively). 

He hosted his own version of a program where he coaxed kids into conveying their innocent outlook on life. Such musings often resulted in uproarious laughter from the studio audience. 

Any one of those accomplishments I listed would make an entertainment career for most. The fact that one person is known for all of those exploits makes one a legendary figure. 

Here's where the laughter ends.

Bill Cosby — America’s Dad — accused of rape by dozens of women, was finally hit with a criminal charge Wednesday before getting released on $1 million bail.

Just weeks before the statute of limitations was set to expire, prosecutors charged Cosby with sexually assaulting a Temple University employee at his suburban Philadelphia mansion in 2004.

“The evidence is strong,” said Montgomery County Prosecutor Kevin Steele, announcing a single count of aggravated indecent assault against the creepy comedian.

Steele described the defenseless victim, tossing a fresh layer of taint on Cosby’s once-wholesome image.

Nothing was more stunning than a July article in New York magazine featuring thirty five different women sharing similar tales of Cosby violating them. Thirty. Five.

If indeed these allegations are true, there's not even a question who is most adversely impacted by this. It's the victims, hands down. But that doesn't mean there aren't countless others who will endure emotional pain, albeit to a lesser degree.

Cosby was on a crusade to remove the negative stigma surrounding the black community, whether it was addressing the disproportionate high school dropout rates, fracturing of the family units, etc. But any moral authority he may have had on those issues has vanished, and it's quite likely many in the black community feel utterly betrayed.

And what about his fellow actors on The Cosby Show? Because no TV station will air reruns of that classic sitcom, all those folks no longer have an opportunity to earn residuals (assuming such an agreement was in place).

For nearly four decades , Cosby was put on the proverbial pedestal as an entertainer who maintained the values of a loving husband and doting dad while earning the status of one of the most recognizable mega stars. But given the allegations that have surfaced over the past few years, I'm hard pressed to think of a more stunning fall from grace.


Monday, December 28, 2015

Quick Hits: Volume CXXII

- A musical legend has died.

Lemmy Kilmister, the lead singer and bassist of Motörhead and a heavy metal icon for six decades, passed away Monday after a battle with cancer. Kilmister turned 70 on Christmas Eve. The band's official Facebook confirmed Kilmister's passing, "There is no easy way to say this… our mighty, noble friend Lemmy passed away today after a short battle with an extremely aggressive cancer."

Like many icons, Lemmy was just as revered for his exploits off stage, particularly when it came to the obligatory lechery.

When asked a few years ago if the legend was true about his bedding approximately 1,000 women, Lemmy's answer was itself legendary.

When you think about it, it isn't that unreasonable. I'm not even married, and I've been doing this since I was 16. And I'm now 66, so that's like 50 years.

If my math is correct, that's an average of about two gals per month over 50 years. That's borderline chaste compared to his peers.

-For the first time in three seasons, my favorite NFL squad is in the playoffs!

Thanks to a convincing win over the New York Giants Sunday evening, the Minnesota Vikings have a chance to play a home postseason game if they can beat the Green Bay Packers Sunday. If indeed that happens, the Vikes would host the Seattle Seahawks the following weekend. Yes, the same Seahawks who came into TCF Bank Stadium a few weeks ago a crushed the Vikings 38-7. However, if the Vikings and Seattle both lose their regular season finales, Minnesota would then travel to Washington, D.C. to take on an average Redskins team.

Some are suggesting the Vikes tank Sunday in order to play a less formidable opponent in their first playoff game. While I don't deny Seattle would be the tougher draw, any talk of tanking games is utterly asinine. How could any true Vikings fan even suggest mailing in a game against the rival Packers?

- Congressman Trey Gowdy (R-SC) recently endorsed Marco Rubio for President. As such, some of the maniacal Donald Trump supporters wrote that off as "establishment RINOs looking out for each other." Never mind the fact that both Gowdy and Rubio were only first elected to Congress in 2010, but whatever. "Establishment RINO" has become the favorite pejorative for one to lob at someone who doesn't support one's preferred candidate. It basically has no meaning anymore.

Anyhow, one of the more visible Trump spokespersons, Katrina Pierson, just a few months ago was starting a movement to draft Gowdy as the new Speaker of the House to replace the retiring John Boehner (heck, she even touted his candidacy on my radio program on October 4). And would you believe her organization, the Tea Party Leadership Fund, is still using said candidacy to raise money?



Sunday, December 27, 2015

Been a long night and something ain't right.....

Yes, The Closer is live today as I close out Northern Alliance Radio Network broadcasting for not only the weekend but also the year 2015. The one-hour festivities begin at 2:00 PM Central Time.

Right at 2:00, I welcome to the Patriot bunker former Minnesota legislator Jim Abeler. After serving 16 years in the MN House, Abeler did not seek reelection in 2014. However, he has chosen to mount a primary challenge against SD35 GOP endorsed candidate Andy Aplikowski in the race to replace resigning state senator Branden Petersen. 

In the non-guest segments, I hope to discuss Congressman Trey Gowdy's endorsement of Marco Rubio for President, a WaPo cartoonist considering it "fair game" to skewer Ted Cruz's daughters, etc. 

So please give me a call at (651) 289-4488 if you'd like to weigh in on 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, or check us out via iheart radio
Even though I have a face for radio, there is a UStream channel where you can watch the broadcast, if you so desire. Check it out here.  

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

Until then.....


Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Never change, leftist media

How the leftist media (pardon the redundancy) attempts to dodge any culpability when their blatant bias crosses the line of decency:

Step 1: Draw a cartoon which mocks a GOP presidential candidate's daughters.

Step 2: Justify the depiction of said candidate's daughters by essentially saying the candidate had it coming.

Step 3: When the candidate expresses justified outrage over such a personal affront, accuse him of "lashing out."

Step 4: Upon the public outcry becoming so overbearing, launch a pathetic attempt to rationalize such disgusting mockery.

What's most amazing about these elitist media types is they are so firmly entrenched in their proverbial bubble that they're gobsmacked when the public at large rips them.


Monday, December 21, 2015

Royal mistake

As some of you may know, I was emcee of the Miss Minnesota pageant this past June. Having never been in that role previously, I wasn't sure what to expect.

One of the responsibilities which had me fretting for a couple of weeks leading up to the pageant was when the time would come for me to announce the winner of Miss Minnesota. Basically I was concerned I would announce the wrong contestant as winner. As I verbalized that concern, I was assured by previous emcees that it is very plainly written out by the auditors the order of the top 5, so there should be no issues. Nevertheless, it was an irrational fear that plagued me until the ultimate moment arrived.

Yes, Rachel Latuff was the legit winner of Miss Minnesota 2015.

But even if I had called Lauren Johnson's name, I could have at least taken some solace in the fact it wasn't done in front of millions of people.

I guess that's why I feel just awful for the host of last evening's Miss Universe pageant.

For a moment, all was right with the universe for Miss Colombia. Indeed, Ariadna Gutierrez Arevalo had just been crowned Miss Universe on national television in Las Vegas by co-host Steve Harvey — the pinnacle of any pageant contestant’s career.

Then, quickly and devastatingly, her dream died. It turned out Harvey had read the wrong name.

“Okay, folks,” said Harvey, clad in a white tuxedo with a red-and-white polka dot bow tie as Miss Colombia waved to a cheering crowd, said. “I have to apologize.”

The crowd erupted again — perhaps expecting one of Harvey’s patented slow-burn bits. But this was no joke.

“The first runner-up is Colombia,” Harvey said.

Miss Colombia looked ready to kill — as it suddenly dawned on Miss Philippines, Pia Alonzo Wurtzbach, that she, the former first runner-up, had actually won the night. The incredibly awkward outcome: Miss Colombia was uncrowned, and Miss Philippines crowned.

“I will take responsibility for this,” Harvey said. “It was my mistake. It was on the card. Horrible mistake, but the right thing — I can show it to you right here. The first word is ‘Colombia.’ It is my mistake.”

In this day and age, sentiments can reach even more millions of people via Twitter, which Harvey took to within an hour of the pageant's conclusion.

For what it's worth, I accept Harvey's apology.

On a side note, some hilarity ensued.

Oh well, if anyone is equipped to endure the fallout from this, it's a professional comedian. Dunno if he'll make it part of his act anytime soon however.

Sunday, December 20, 2015

Don we now our gay apparel.....

There's a lot to get to on this edition of The Closer in this the final broadcast before Christmas. The one hour bonanza begins at 2:00 PM Central Time.

We'll look back at this past Tuesday's GOP presidential debate and the various story lines created. Among the fallout is Ted Cruz being on the defensive over his hitting Marco Rubio on legalization of illegal aliens despite Cruz himself proposing it 2+ years ago. And as has been the case over the past several months, Donald Trump's poll numbers are still solid despite his usual bluster, bombast and lack of factual insights.

So please give me a call at (651) 289-4488 if you'd like to weigh in on 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, or check us out via iheart radio
Even though I have a face for radio, there is a UStream channel where you can watch the broadcast, if you so desire. Check it out here.  

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

Until then.....


Thursday, December 17, 2015

Equal time?

Tom Brady is an NFL quarterback. Being one of the top players in a high profile profession puts one under extra scrutiny. Apparently that trait also puts Brady under some obligation to defend comments made by his high profile "friend" Donald Trump.

Brady’s relationship with Trump is under fire following the real estate mogul's controversial call for a ban on Muslims entering the U.S. last week.

The New York Daily News published an article Wednesday criticizing the football star for not publicly rejecting Trump’s remarks during an interview the day before.

“The four-time Super Bowl champ turned big-time chump when he fumbled a perfect opportunity to condemn his ‘good friend’ Donald Trump’s dangerous demagoguery and racist rhetoric – scrambling instead to try to find a way out of actually endorsing his billionaire buddy,” the article said.

Say, here's a thought for you leftist NYDN scribes. The likes of TE Vernon Davis, WR Marques Colston and QB Mike Vick are active players in the NFL. All three supported President Barack Obama for reelection in 2012. Any chance you're at all intellectually curious why those players would support a man for President who is perfectly OK with a baby being pulled half way out of his/her mother's womb only to be stabbed in the back of the neck with scissors, have his/her skull crushed and brains sucked out?

Lemme know what you find out. I'm sure you're ON IT!


Wednesday, December 16, 2015

GOP Debate recap: Vegas, baby

What a fantastic evening last night at O'Gara's Bar & Grill St Paul. For the second time this election cycle, AM 1280 The Patriot hosted a GOP debate viewing party and, like the first soiree, we were over capacity!

My Northern Alliance Radio Network colleague Mitch Berg and I had a blast hangin' with the listeners, live tweeting the debate (with our tweets being posted on a big screen) and just indulging in the discussion on the salient issues. Kudos to CNN/Salem moderators Wolf Blitzer, Dana Bash and Hugh Hewitt with their terrific line of questioning. With the recent terror attacks in Paris, France and San Bernardino, CA, obviously the main focus was on foreign policy. While the methodology differs among the candidates, there was multiple times more substance on this issue than you will ever hear in a Democrat debate.

The "also ran" debate featuring Lindsey Graham, Mike Huckabee, Rick Santorum and George Pataki was OK, I guess. I viewed as little more than Graham constantly puffing up his 36 separate visits to Iraq, probably in the hopes of angling for Secretary of Defense. Other than that, it was a feckless exercise.

Anyhow, here's my breakdown on how each top tier candidate performed in the "main event."

Jeb Bush: Started out strong. Someone said that "Jeb Bush with nothing to lose is my favorite Jeb Bush." He even landed a rare good zinger on his main nemesis Donald Trump by saying Trump likely gets his information from Saturday morning shows (i.e. cartoons) as opposed to the Sunday talk fests. However, Bush seemed to fade as the debate went on.

Yes, Jeb! needs to get a clue that the millions upon millions his Super PAC has spent to tout his candidacy has barely moved the needle. He emphasized a need to ensure that Donald Trump is not the GOP nominee. He could help expedite that process by moving on himself.

Ben Carson: Foreign Policy is definitely Dr. Carson's weakest area. The more troubling aspect is he doesn't appear all that desirous to become more knowledgeable. Like Sen. Graham, Carson should angle for a cabinet position (In Carson's case, Surgeon General). I greatly admire Dr. Carson and his life story but he definitely should not be in this race for much longer.

Chris Christie: After slipping to the under card last debate, Christie was back in the main event. With foreign policy/terrorism at the heart of Tuesday's debate, Christie was definitely in his element given his role as a prosecuting attorney during the 9/11/01 terror attacks. He also effectively touted his executive experience, chiding the Senators on stage whom he felt didn't have to make as difficult of decisions as he does. Christie was also more emboldened (if that's possible) by receiving the endorsement of the New Hampshire Union Leader.

One concerning moment was when Christie did not hesitate in saying he would shoot down a Russian fighter jet if said vessel violated a "no fly zone" over Syria. Dunno that starting a war with Russia is a great idea.

Ted Cruz; The long awaited tussle with Marco Rubio finally happened. Cruz hit back at Rubio's assertion that their respective plans on immigration reform are not that dramatically different. Cruz essentially said Rubio's statement was like saying a fire fighter and an arsonist are the same just because they're present at the same fire.

For me, Cruz's debate was summed up by two incidents. One, he flat out denied he supported some sort of legalization for illegal aliens (except he did).

And two, he quite often when past the buzzer indicating his time was up. I was hoping the moderators would be all like.....

Carly Fiorina: Calm, cool and collected. As usual, she did a nice job of conflating how her personal experiences (losing a child, surviving cancer, etc.) and business background would translate into being a good leader. And while the other candidates often took shots at each other, she was the only one who consistently went after Hillary Clinton.

Unfortunately for Ms. Fiorina, she doesn't seem to have the ability to parlay those debate performance bounces into any sustained success on the campaign trail. I don't see her in this race past the Iowa Caucuses.

John Kasich; Upon seeing Kasich flail his arms like a Kung Fu fighter...

....while saying little of substance, I (and, judging by my Twitter feed, much of the debate audience) couldn't help but wonder.....

Rand Paul; While I don't agree with a good portion of Paul's foreign policy vision, I admire the fact that he has developed a vast knowledge of the issue during his Senate term. However, Paul came off as quite petty and snarky when dinging Rubio for being part of the Senate's "Gang of Eight" and then jabbing Christie over Bridgegate. Since neither Rubio nor Christie took the bait, Paul appeared even smaller.

I had high hopes for Paul as a candidate, but I just don't see a path to victory. He certainly will win reelection to the US Senate in a walk come November 2016.

Marco Rubio: I was surprised it took until this debate for the moderators to broach the "Gang of Eight" issue. To Rubio's credit, he didn't back down. A path to legalization for illegal aliens may not be popular among conservative Republicans but it's something that wouldn't necessarily destroy him in a general election.

I've said often that Rubio is the most thoughtful and articulate of all the candidates when it comes to communicating the GOP message. While he needs to shore up his stance on surveillance and the NSA's gathering of meta-data, he's in this for the long haul.

Donald Trump; If you've read this blog for any length of time, you know full well I am not a Trump supporter. In fact, I'd be hard pressed to say he's in my top 10 despite there only being 13 candidates. With all that said, I thought Trump had a pretty good performance.

While he occasionally employed his trademark mockery and snark, Trump actually stuck with the substantive issues. Again, he's not exactly the most nuanced speaker in the field, but he didn't back down from his plan to ban Muslim immigrants from entering the U.S.

I'd say that Trump did nothing to hurt his substantial lead in the polls but that seems to be an obvious statement given his usual bombast and outrageous statements rarely has a negative impact.

I felt Trump's low point was his complaint about how the moderators constantly asked questions about statements he's made on the campaign trail. For as much of an attention whore he comes off as, that just seemed downright whiny.

For the final debate in 2015, I was pleased with how it turned out. Not only was there a lot of substantive discussion, it also gave us insight as to who clearly belongs and who does not. Let's hope we're down to about 4-5 candidates by the January 2016 debate in Iowa.


Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Up for debate?

If you're in the Twin Cities area (or even the upper Midwest) and are planning on watching the GOP presidential debate, why not make it a spectator sport?

My Northern Alliance Radio Network colleague Mitch Berg and myself will be emceeing the festivities.

As an added bonus, representatives from the Salvation Army will be present in the event you're an avid online Christmas shopper and thus won't have an occasion walk by the famous red kettles this holiday season. That's right. You can donate onsite to this wonderful organization via any method you choose (cash, check, text, etc.).

Hope to see you there!


Sunday, December 13, 2015

So I pulled out a suit about the same color as my BMW.....

With the Vikings having already played their week 14 game this past Thursday, I should have a lot more attentive listeners than normal (I hope!!!). Anyhow the one-hour radio extravaganza we call The Closer begins at 2:00 PM Central Time.

Naturally I'll have an opinion or two on Donald Trump's proposal to ban Muslim immigrants from entering the U.S. and how it's affected his polling numbers. I'll also discuss other presidential candidate news. 

At 2:30 I will welcome to the Patriot bunker author/Alzheimer's Advocate/2012 Miss Minnesota Outstanding Teen Bailey Wachholz. Earlier this year Bailey completed her first book entitled Such a Pretty Young Lady: Grandma's Journey with Alzheimer's, so she'll be on to promote this endeavor as well as share how this benefits her advocacy. 

So please give me a call at (651) 289-4488 if you'd like to weigh in on 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, or check us out via iheart radio

Even though I have a face for radio, there is a UStream channel where you can watch the broadcast, if you so desire. Check it out here.  

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

Until then.....


Thursday, December 10, 2015

Read between the lines

After Sen. Dave Thompson (R-Lakeville) suffered a tough defeat in the 2014 GOP endorsement contest for Minnesota governor, some wondered aloud if he really had the desire to continue in politics. Thompson is definitely one of the good ones, a principled and unapologetic conservative in a state where so few can be elected.

With the MN state senate up for reelection in 2016, the speculation hasn't died down over whether or not Thompson will endure another election cycle.

This tweet he put out Wednesday has me leaning towards the sentiment that  he's not running again.

Rarely are sitting politicians this...uh...."off color" if there is something like reelection at stake.


Tuesday, December 08, 2015

Final straw?

Anything that hilarious usually has a grain of truth to it.

Donald Trump called Monday for a "total and complete shutdown" of the entry of Muslims to the United States "until our country's representatives can figure out what is going on."

In a statement released by his campaign Monday afternoon, Trump included recent poll findings that he says show that a sizable segment of the Muslim population has "great hatred towards Americans."

"Without looking at the various polling data, it is obvious to anybody the hatred is beyond comprehension," Trump is quoted as saying in the statement. "Where this hatred comes from and why we will have to determine. Until we are able to determine and understand this problem and the dangerous threat it poses, our country cannot be the victims of horrendous attacks by people that believe only in Jihad, and have no sense of reason or respect for human life."

Since social conservatives have taken a beating in the culture war (specifically on the gay marriage issue) the past 5-10 years, the focus over the past year has started to shift towards religious liberty, an issue that is absolutely winnable for the political right. Leave it to the candidate who leads in the polls for the GOP nomination to throw a proverbial monkey wrench into that movement.

Dr. Russell Moore, who is President of the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, lays it out.

Make no mistake. A government that can shut down mosques simply because they are mosques can shut down Bible studies because they are Bible studies. A government that can close the borders to all Muslims simply on the basis of their religious belief can do the same thing for evangelical Christians.

A government that issues ID badges for Muslims simply because they are Muslims can, in the fullness of time, demand the same for Christians because we are Christians.

We are in a time of war, and we should respond as those in a time of war. But we must never lose in a time of war precious freedoms purchased through the blood of patriots in years past. We must have security, and we must have order. But we must not trade soul freedom for an illusion of winning.

As a Republican, I want a GOP victory in the 2016 race for the White House as much as any right-of-center politico. But I am, first and foremost, a Christian and my ability (along with my inalienable right) to worship freely supersedes politics. That is why I would not think twice about forgoing a vote for President if indeed it comes down to a choice between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump next year.

Final thought: I've never totally bought in to the conspiracy that Trump is sabotaging the Republican primary process in an effort to get his pal Hillary elected President. However, if Trump were indeed implementing that strategy, would it look dramatically different from what he is doing now?


Monday, December 07, 2015

Quick Hits: Volume CXXI

- Last evening, for only the third time in his Presidency, Barack Obama addressed the nation from the Oval Office.

Speculation was he would use that platform to give us reassurances in the fight against ISIS and also to demagogue gun control.

In the effort to thwart potential terrorist threats to our homeland, the president made a plea to Muslim communities.

"If we're to succeed in defeating terrorism, we must enlist Muslim communities as some of our strongest allies, rather than push them away through suspicion and hate," Obama said. "That does not mean denying the fact that an extremist ideology has spread within some Muslim communities. It's a real problem that Muslims must confront without excuse."

I have to admit that this is a refreshing change for the president. Normally he lectures Christians on alleged violence they commit in the name of their religion while making straw man arguments that "moderate Muslims" are being oppressed because of actions by radical elements of their movement.

Another conspicuous statement by Obama?

Over the last few years, however, the terrorist threat has evolved into a new phase. As we've become better at preventing complex, multifaceted attacks like 9/11, terrorists turned to less complicated acts of violence like the mass shootings that are all too common in our society. It is this type of attack that we saw at Fort Hood in 2009; in Chattanooga earlier this year; and now in San Bernardino. And as groups like ISIL grew stronger amidst the chaos of war in Iraq and then Syria, and as the Internet erases the distance between countries, we see growing efforts by terrorists to poison the minds of people like the Boston Marathon bombers and the San Bernardino killers.

Emphasis was mine.

I wonder who finally convinced the Obama administration to let go of that idiotic narrative that the Fort Hood incident was "workplace violence."

- Just another friendly reminder to those who believe Donald Trump is the inevitable GOP nominee for President:

- My Minnesota Vikings were throttled by the Seattle Seahawks yesterday, 38-7.

The good news is the Vikes are still 8-4, tied atop the NFC North division (The Green Bay Packers still have the edge though, due to defeating the Vikings head-to-head two weeks ago).

The bad news is we are, I'm afraid, seeing the Vikings for who they really are: a wildcard team who is likely to be knocked out in the first round of the playoffs.

I said before the season that the Vikes would win 9-10 games in 2015, which would be good enough for second place in the division and a wildcard berth. Despite that nice stretch they had in October and November where they went 6-1, the Vikings really didn't have a signature win. Think about it. Which victories really stand out? The wins at Atlanta, at Oakland and home versus Kansas City, right? Those clubs are, at best, fringe playoff teams. Of those three, only the Chiefs have a winning record. But when the Vikings have played clubs who have made deep playoff runs within the past 2-3 seasons (Denver, Green Bay and Seattle), they've lost.

While I feel the Vikes improved under coach Mike Zimmer in 2014 and have also made strides this season, they're just not ready for primetime.

Oh well, it will be pretty fun to see their coming out party at US Bank Stadium over the next season or two.


Sunday, December 06, 2015

Now you've disappeared somewhere, like outer space.....

Starting today, we're debuting a more compact version of my radio show The Closer. The broadcast will be a 1-hour extravaganza, beginning at 2:00 PM Central Time.

Much of the hour will be devoted to the San Bernadino shootings. Not only will I discuss the abhorrent leftist demagoguery, I will also weigh in on people of faith being mocked/ridiculed/attacked for offering prayers. 

If time allows, I will also chat about the latest budget surplus in the state of Minnesota and perhaps any news on the presidential candidate front. 

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, or check us out via iheart radio

Even though I have a face for radio, there is a UStream channel where you can watch the broadcast, if you so desire. Check it out here.  

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

Until then.....


Saturday, December 05, 2015

Our collective good fortune......or something.

Earlier this year, the state of Minnesota projected a near $1.9 billion budget surplus over the following two years. The extra haul was lauded by Little Lord Fauntleroy Gov. Mark Dayton as "our collective good fortune." I'm sorry, but I reject the notion that excess taxation of Minnesotans in uncertain economic times should be described as "good fortune."

This past week, it was announced the surplus is now projected to be $2 billion through 2017. After a legally required amount is stashed away for savings, that leaves nearly $1.2 billion to haggle over. Naturally the Republicans will want significant tax cuts and will hold firm on the "no gas tax" pledge (something which even Dayton concedes is "dead."). The DFL will of course look to increase spending in certain areas, particularly education. But as economist John Spry mentioned on the lesser Twin Cities conservative talk station Friday morning, a supposed one time infusion to start, say, Dayton's pet project of universal Pre-K will lead to an "ongoing obligation." Amazing how quickly any potential surpluses would disappear. Last I checked, this state hasn't been the most efficient when it comes to education spending.

With a shortened legislative session in 2016, it is likely that a transportation funding package will be discussed given one was not passed last session. Surprisingly there doesn't seem to be a lot of contentiousness over initial proposals.

House Republicans proposed dedicating the sales tax on auto parts, rental vehicles and motor vehicle sales to the highway fund -- an ongoing source of about $300 million per year.

Though DFLers resisted that idea at first, some have come around. Dayton on Thursday said he could accept it, as long as the amount of existing revenue dedicated to roads was not "so large as to jeopardize our future fiscal stability."

Now if we could just finally scrap MNSure.......


Thursday, December 03, 2015

Again we exclaim "Not Again!"

Heartbreaking. Depressing. Maddening. Scary.

Pick any adjective you like when describing yet another mass shooting.

Fourteen people were confirmed killed and 17 more wounded in a mass shooting at a San Bernardino community social services building.

“We do have some preliminary numbers of upwards of 14 people that are dead and upwards of 14 people that are injured,” said Chief Jarrod Burguan of San Bernardino Police. The number of injured was later upped to 17.

At least 10 of the injured are reportedly in critical condition.

Whenever I hear of horrific incidents such as this (and let's face it, it feels as though they've become much too commonplace), I feel the urge to pray. I pray for the survivors of the slain. I pray for the critically injured. I pray for the witnesses who were spared that they are able to overcome any emotional trauma.

But in the eyes of some people (including President Barack Obama), prayers just aren't enough in these times. In fact, calls for prayers in the aftermath of San Bernardino were met with scorn and ridicule by some on the left. I guess the reaction from the political portsiders shouldn't be all that surprising given they look at government itself as a deity. Any attention diverted away from their god is something they likely consider a mortal sin.

At the end of the day, I choose to trust in the Lord and lean not onto my own understanding. That can be a frustrating endeavor for our humanly desires which want to know more and understand how seemingly senseless things can happen. But I choose to continue to keep the faith because I know He sees the end from the beginning. And when I generally become annoyed (and at times flat out angry) with leftist demagogues in situations like this, I find that prayer is the absolute best antidote.

So with all due respect Mr President, prayers are not only enough but they are more than sufficient.


Wednesday, December 02, 2015

You keep using that word....


GOP Presidential candidate Donald Trump has made significant hay over his tough talk on illegal immigration. Not only does Trump seem hellbent on deporting every single individual who is in the U.S. illegally, he also believes he can successfully challenge how the 14th amendment has been enforced for nearly 150 years (i.e. children born in this country to non-citizens are considered American citizens).

Despite Trump's plans being pure fantasy, he has consistently maintained his lead atop the race for the Republican nomination. Because of this, other GOP candidates have had to tread lightly on this issue for fear of being labeled "pro amnesty." This is something I have ranted and raved about for some time. Since many right-of-center politicians realize the impracticality (and near impossibility) of deporting all illegal aliens, such ideas as "path to citizenship" legislation or "guest worker" programs have been bandied about. Typically those proposals have entailed illegal aliens paying back taxes and fines as penance for violating our laws. Sorry, but that's not "amnesty." However, it still doesn't stop some of the Trump-kins from labeling anything short of mass deportations as such.

Definitely check out Allahpundit's piece over at Hot Air, as he addresses this issue better than I ever could.


Tuesday, December 01, 2015

Brown out

With the score tied at 27 with three seconds remaining in last evening's Monday Night Football game, the Cleveland Browns lined up to attempt a 51-yard field goal to give them the win over the Baltimore Ravens. Rookie kicker Travis Coons was a perfect 18 for 18 in field goal attempts (including the two he made in last night's contest) as he lined up for the game winner.

The kick was blocked.

Ravens special teamer Will Hill grabbed the deflection and scampered 64 yards down the near sidelines for the game-winning touchdown. The immediate reaction on social media afterwards was pretty much summed up as "Browns gonna Brown" or "That is the most Browns finish ever."

About 5-1/2 years ago, the NFL Network's Top 10 series devoted a show to most snakebit NFL franchises. While my Vikings can make a solid case for the top spot, they were number two behind.......the Cleveland Browns.

After last evening, don't look for the Browns to move off the top spot anytime soon.