Sunday, October 22, 2006

Don McIntire Reads Loaded Orygun

It's kind of a labor of love to do candidate interviews. They almost never garner comments, they usually take multiple posts to do correctly, and the way I personally like to do them, they have no gonzo to them whatsoever. I like to let the candidates speak for themselves, and hope that the questions are good enough to elicit interesting answers, while not having to worry about taking things out of context. The candidates seem to like them for that; nothing gets misconstrued from the speaking to the writing. So I like them, and the subjects like them, but in general they seem to go relatively unnoticed.

But we do get the odd hit from candidate websites where our interview with them is linked, and several have come from Mike Caudle's HD39 campaign in Canby and the OC (Oregon City). As we've said repeatedly, Mike is a progressive candidate who can play very well in a mixed rural-exburban district that generally leans the other way. He has found a very real discontent in the district for the way Scott has conducted himself, particularly ethically, and when he makes contact he seems well received. And so despite all the pronouncements that Scott will walk over Caudle and that the district is not on the table, the conservative body politic is a little nervous.

The Oregon Taxpayer's Association certainly felt it necessary to say something on Scott's behalf; over the weeked they pushed a direct mail piece apparently to every household in the district--no cheap buy. In it, they focused of course on taxes and use of tax money, hitting on Caudle's support of analysis whether one or both kickers might best be utilized. And they drew in Ted Kulongoski while they were at it, continuing to repeat the canard that the governor supports repealing the personal kicker. Even though I think he was right to consider it, he did in fact back down from that stance some months ago.

And to nail Caudle, they caught him saying on record that "the whole premise of the kicker is a flawed reality anyway, but Oregonians are so in love with it I don't know if it will ever go away." Which I thought was a pretty savvy answer, especially seeing the bigger picture of what a fraud concept "revenue overage" is under the kicker system. I thought it was a savvy answer at the time he said it, because he was saying it to me. OTA followed proper citing guidelines in the mailer--a rare display of honesty--and identified it as an interview with Loaded Orygun, (liberal blog).

Geez Don (or perhaps Jason Williams, Executive Director), you should have dropped a comment while you were here, and explained what struck you about that quote. Is not the treatment of higher incomes and thus higher tax revenues as an "overage," a flawed reality? Is there any sense that Oregonians are ready to boot the personal kicker? Do you just want to tar him generally by seeing him as a consort of the "liberal blogs?" We're insidious and disruptive, are we? Our endorsement is mud in the taverns of Canby, is that it?

I'm sorry if the outlandish editorial extremism of LO came out in our verbatim transcript of your words and we cost you some votes, Mike. We didn't mean to be the local zealotry's DailyKos, whose mere association with a candidate causes revulsion in the hinterlands (so the RNC seems to think). We'll cut down on the fucks and assholes if it helps you with the retirees. Oh shit, I guess I shouldn't have said that. Anyway, sorry Mike--and hey you OTA guys, don't be strangers next time! Try your spiel out here and see if it withstands the scrutiny. And if I sent you a chunk of my old bathtub, do you think you could get Grover Norquist to sign it?