Posts by: Abe

John Kasich has apparently found his comfort zone for re-election in a kind of political pantomime in which he is silently acting out his role to the voters in paid-TV imagery while his narrators assure you that he means well in everything he sets out to do for you.

So until election day we will be served with body language and thoroughly encrypted feel-good messages without him really showing up as a real person. (Exception: When the governor, anticipating a generous contribution, called upon God to bless Sheldon Adelson, the Midas-like casino owner. Those are the moments that don’t [...]

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Having declared Ed FitzGerald’s gubernatorial campaign DOA on several occasions, the Plain Dealer still persists in digging into his distant past in the hope of handing the election to Gov. Kasich by acclimation. In less-polite circles, it’s known as piling on.

There’s never been any doubt that the PD, the voice of the city’s controlling business and religious establishment, was on board with Republican Kasich way back when it endorsed him against Democratic incumbent Gov.Ted Strickland. When I asked an influential source at the paper how they arrived at that decision, he gave me his raw assessment:

“Kasich scares the [...]

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Did you see that Dick Cheney, the rusting Tin Woodsman of the Republican Party, ambled back up to Capitol Hill to advise others in his class on how to handle the ISIS problem. According to the New York Times, his remedy could be reduced to a handful of words: Embrace a strong military and reject rising isolationism.

But wait. The Times report also noted that he didn’t embrace specifics. Smart evasion. For one thing, nobody – not the president, the Joint Chiefs of Staff, America’s allies in Europe, John McCain, Dick Cheney,the highbrow pundits, the fly on the wall know [...]

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Joe Vardon, the Dispatch reporter who has dutifully recorded every step of Gov Kasich at home and abroad, has joined the Plain Dealer’s Northeast Ohio Media Group staff. His new beat: basketball icon LeBron James. Honest.

It may be a first in professional sports. I mean, a reporter who will live and breathe in his night-and-day job for one athlete.

The PD reported that Vardon will “pay attention to James’ basketball exploits, but he will also cover James’ business empire, charitable work and mentoring of youth.”

But maybe the career move isn’t as dramatic as it seems, inasmuch as Vardon [...]

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The Labor Day week end brought us more verbal jujitsu from Gov. Kasich as he followed the yellow brick road to Stamco Industries in Euclid. There was even evidence that his bid for reelection was actually living a double life – one as a candidate and the other as his campaign’s innocent bystander.

As reported by the Plain Dealer, the governor was asked whether he would debate his Democratic opponent, Ed FitzGerald. He pleaded ignorance to the whole scenario. “That’s up to the campaign,” he told the reporter. “They’re involved in all that.”

Up to the campaign? What are we [...]

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Just as the Republican Zoological Society was approaching manic panic over the depletion of its 672 reasons to blame President Obama for everything from the extinction of dinosaurs to radio static during thunderstorms, along came Bobby Jindal to give them a lift.

The Louisiana governor, one of a widening group of GOP presidential wannabes, did it the new-fashioned way. Inspired by Speaker John Boehner, he is suing the Obama Administration to express his opposition to Common Core . What makes Jindal so jingled is that he had supported the educational standards, as they say, before he was against the plan. [...]

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The Ohio Republican Party says it has found a scandal in Democratic State Sen. Nina Turner’s campaign against Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted. According to the party’s top flak, Chris Schrimpf, Turner is …um…”too partisan”.

Who knew?

Although Schrimpf’s assessment of Turner hardly rises above the level of playground insults, it is the stuff one would expect from a spokesperson who once labored in the non-partisan inner circles of righties like Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker and Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue.

Schrimpf doesn’t think Turner is playing nice by referring to Republicans as “stupid and dumb”, words not unfamiliar to [...]

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John Kasich wants me to know that he grew up in humble surroundings that seeded his deep concern for ordinary, hard-working folks. He seldom fails to mention in his TV ads that his father was a mailman for 29 years. His reelection campaign is spending millions of soft-earned contributions from the highest rollers that pay for these ads. He’s just a regular guy, they tell us – or as National Review defined him, “a blue-collar kid from a little town near Pittsburgh called McKees Rocks. (Historians tell us Alexander McKee was a colonial British Indian agent who was loyal to [...]

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Husted’s DOA Redistricting Ideas

On August 16, 2014 By

Among the more aggressive political myths projected by the state’s editorial writers and garden variety pundits is that Secretary of State Jon Husted, a Republican, has earned a big gold merit badge for his concern about Ohio’s scandalous congressional district lines. After all, he talks about it all the time.

But wait! Husted is a Republican. The gerrymandering was carried out by Republicans who are quite comfortable with their congressional victories at the polls. Both houses of the General Assembly are controlled by Republicans. Gov. Kasich and his crowd are all Republicans. Question: Why would any of these operatives want [...]

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May we pause for a moment to give thanks to the presence in our midst of comic opera diva Sarah Palin, who brightens each day with cheerful lyrics that sustain us in the rush of awful news from around the world.

Her latest aria, voiced from a truck stop north of Fairbanks, and played quite broadly, told us there is a brighter future for people who work for minimum wages – or less. Reaching a high C, she reminded all of us that such jobs are not lifetime endeavors but rather “stepping stones” to something quite more rewarding. Another controversy [...]

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In view of the fuss over another questionable appointment by Gov. Kasich – to wit, Rick Hodges as state health director – it shouldn’t surprise anyone that the governor’s creative writers will come up with a new category for guys like Hodges who are absent of qualifying credentials under state law. The statute requires the director to have “significant experience” in the profession. Oh? Hodges was the director of the Ohio Turnpike Commission. Unless your job is remedying potholes, not even close.

But as Plunderbund pointed out, when the kitchen became hot from criticism, his application was altered [...]

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