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This is the personal weblog of Aakash Raut, established Sept. 2002. It will cover current affairs, worldwide & national topics, local & university events, and provide insight and commentary on contemporary issues and the news from his perspective. Enjoy!

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    Thursday, October 23, 2008

    28 Minutes Late

    When pencilling (or penning) in the appointment I just scheduled tomorrow, to get my car's exhaust and muffler system looked at (and replaced, if necessary... cc: Lexi, Kelsey, Ryan R. ;-), I saw that today is 10/23. I realized I needed to do my annual "Mole Day" entry, and I thought to myself that it might be good to do it at 10:23... I know the regular observance begins at 10:23 AM - that's when people would be in school - but when Mr. Szabo did it, there was no time contraint, on this day.

    I had wanted to post this year's "Mole Day" tribute at 10:23 PM [my IRS entry was at 10:40 PM ;-)], but The Sims 2 (one of those "game challenges" - the Orphans one [rules link]) kept me behind the laptop too long [this one has 4GB of RAM, so it can run this game... At least for now, you never know these Windows machines - Once again, I wish I'd been able to afford a MacBook. Those ads are true, by the way... They hit the nail on the head].

    I need to get a recommendation letter completed, for one of our former UIS College Republicans officers, who is about to get admitted to West Point. (Sorry, Josh, for not having done so yet!!)

    A 'family emergency'-type situation unexpectedly (very unexpectedly!) arose today, and we are dealing with that, as I type this; tomorrow will be a full day (not to mention the election-related activities and events... with the big day looming).

    I honestly don't know if I will get that bloggage I wanted to have published, actually published. Oh well.

    (Though this sucks, since much of it is election-related, and won't be as relevant, after November 4th.)

    I need to get back on the Red Bull. In the meantime, here is the MOLE DAY tribute, for 2008.

    Wow... I was just wishing that there would be an SHS/Szabo-created video, for this purpose; last time, I included a video from... I don't know whom (nor have I even watched it, I think!). I decided to go to home page of my alma mater high school's website [SHS Online we helped create that ground-breaking intranet/internet website and web system, by the way... that was during Junior and Senior year], and voila - It is indeed featured, on the front page!

    International Mole Day
    Join Mr. Szabo's chemistry students as they celebrate International Mole Day in these videos.

    That saves me the trouble of having to compose anything more for this, but I will post the song... Well, maybe I won't.

    Gotta go...

    Saturday, October 11, 2008

    Sorry for the rambling...

    Note: I apologize for the 'stream of consciousness'-like nature of these entries, not to mention the typos, and/or incoherencies that have resulted.

    I tried to be more professional, when I just posted at the weblog of the UIS College Republicans:

    As I mentioned there, it is quite a challenge, trying to live-blog all that is happening, as things are happening so quickly!! I've said before that I don't know how some of these people do it (succeed in regularly, coherently, and professionally publishing new content, multiple times a day, on a daily basis, often about events that have just happened - like almost in real-time!). Seeing the way people are seamlessly working away here could be inspiring (as has been witnessing other prolific individuals in the past), but as of now, I find it discouraging.

    Then again, maybe I'd be able to be up to par, had I had time for the Gourmet Roast at the hotel, or at least something more powerful today than half a wine glass of Coca-Cola.

    I did not, as mentioned over here, have a chance to go to lunch... But John Fund of the Wall Street Journal, who seems to be experiencing some of these same issues (as likely are many of us), kindly gave me an apple.

    (I looked to see, which commentator it was, who had infamously stolen a Bloggers' Row's member's laptop, at CPAC 2005... I remember the Blogosphere being on top of that, when it happened. I thought it would be funny, if that was John Fund. Indeed it was. Well, at least he asked, this time!! :-)

    I am off to attend one of the sessions... I was planning on going to the:

    SESSION H - RightOnline
    Old Media vs. New Media: How Ordinary Citizens Can Make Their Voices Heard
    Dan Gainor, Director, Business and Media Institute
    Maggie Thurber, Blogger & Radio Host
    John Fund, The Wall Street Journal
    Don Irvine, President, Accuracy in Media

    The blogger who is now next to me, in this corner of Bloggers' Row, said that this session, when she saw it in New Jersey, provides beginning technical information, and may not be best, for those who are more advanced. (That was the issue with the Leadership Institute class on blogging, at CPAC 2006... I had said that I hoped they would create a "Part II" of that class.) There was a "for advanced bloggers" session, sponsored by [ ], but it unfortunately took place yesterday morning. [Update: It's at least a bit refreshing to have found out that we weren't the only ones absent, at that point of the Summit!]

    Off to Salon K, for Session H...

    Americans for Prosperity
    "Defending the American Dream" Summit
    , Day 2

    We were running late somewhat, but were up and ready this morning, with time to get the free breakfast from the Holiday Inn Express, though I did not get a chance to drink even a sip of that Gourmet Roast coffee. Due to the fact that I haven't had my 'daily dose', and didn't have a chance to see if my official beverage is available, my live-blogging abilities are going to be hampered. (Also keep in mind that we had no sleep, the night before last, and we had to use planes, trains, and automobiles... and shuttles, ferries, etc... ;-)

    The Illinois presentation (Joe Calomino speaking) has just started... I clapped, from here on Bloggers' Row; Mark Johnson joined the applause a little.

    I also saw Alex Brunk, right before coming in here... I was glad yesterday to see that 'Save the GOP' is here; it was frustrating last evening, as it seemed that with that exception, all of the bloggers and blogs here were those which I had never even heard of.** Langley Perry - or perhaps it was [Dial 7 for...] mentioned to us that they had posted photos, from the AFP rally at the Capitol ("angry capitalists storm Capital Hill!!" - as we saw it was referred to, on the television news, which they showed clips of, at the great "Tribute to Ronald Reagan" Dinner last night).

    I see the wonderful Fran Eaton here as well... Will be checking Illinois Review shortly (still haven't had a chance to check the Washington Times, to see if I was mentioned, by that Business Section reporter.

    I am glad to have met Joey Dauben in person... I had IMed and e-mailed with him before; he was running for the U.S. Congress, as a traditionalist and constitutionalist conservative, in the mold of U.S. Congressman Ron Paul (R-TX).

    Publishing now... Will continue this entry.

    ** In addition to Save the GOP, I did of course know about But as I mentioned to "Dial 7 for Celtic," I don't consider that a blog, as I have been using it since the 1990s, and it's a web publication I mentioned, at their table at CPAC 2008, that their links, to past columnists' articles, have changed more than once, and no redirect service has been set up, which can drive some of us crazy (linkrot really sucks!). World Net Daily, when they recently changed their url format, still supports the old links (then again, they didn't do redirect forwarding when they changed from those long "bluesky" urls, some years earlier). When I tried talking to them at CPAC 2008, they seemed clueless... That staffer, behind their table, didn't even know what "Soapbox" was.

    (These guys didn't seem to know that much either; then again, the main TownHall guy I spoke to was in charge of their magazine, rather than the website. I doubt that will correct the old column links, which have changed at least twice... But I mentioned that the Washington Times website has now done so... The old links now re-direct, to the same articles at their new site, which I'm thinking is WordPress-supported.)

    And Rachel Anderson Alexander (Sorry, Rachel! ;-), who I knew of, from Intellectual Conservative, did come in... And she is now with the Sonora Alliance, with a co-blogger (forgot his name... But I didn't feel that bad about not recognizing it, as he said that he blogged mostly anonymously; maybe I should consider doing that - hmmm....). I had a great conversation with Rachel at the Rally yesterday afternoon, and also met Steve Eggerson (of No Runny Eggs), who I had only recently communicated with - we still need to blogroll each other's sites, though. [Update: Shortly after typing this, I discovered that that's only half-true!] That is one of the experiences that I have just saved an entry (not an unpublished draft, but as a published one this time - see below; I will hopefully have that posted soon).

    Another of those whose blogs I recently came across, and is still in my Mozilla Firefox web browser's memory (though this one, it seems that I must have visited, in prior years - as it has been around since 2003), is Conservative Pulse. Austin Cassidy kindly set up at this same table, and we are here again... It's right in front of the big screen, with the live feed. Joey Dauben is to the right of me, and I have found that he is now the editor of the Ellis County Observer.

    [Saturday morning’s General Session at the Defending the American Dream Summit]
    [TomCox: Defending Free Markets, one rally at a time]
    [Update: Just found out about Jason Pye, who seems to be a libertarian conservative (or perhaps Old Right? - That would be great...) via our friends at PeachPundit - that NRA entry explains the statement Joey made about a possible proposed resolution in the Libertarian Party; I was just at the GOA site earlier today. And then I found that he has a current weblog, and seems to have done a good job, of live-blogging from the Summit. | Day 2 | Day 1 | I don't think I had so far come across any bloggers for Bob Barr. I was wondering the other day however, what impact he would have, on McCain's chances in the Peach State. Maybe Erick would know about that; there were also a lot of Georgia CRs and YRs, at the Republican National Convention.]

    I also see someone who has inserted himself onto the side table, which was where Save the GOP, along with another weblog that I hadn't heard of, which is authored by that "Dial Press 7 for Celtic" Save the GOP blogger [Carolina Political Online]... It looks like Scott Johnson, of Powerline blog. He did not seem too happy, at last year's Young America's Foundation Midwest Conference in Minneapolis (which I was recently reminiscing on, as we were there again last month, for the Republican National Convention), where he was one of the blogger panel speakers (along with Pamela Geller of Atlas Shrugs), when I questioned him about Power Line's blunder, over the Mel Martinez memo (on the Terri Schindler-Schiavo travesty) fiasco. But I was also unhappy - and disappointed - with Mr. Johnson's [misleading] response, at that YAF event (Saturday, April 1, 2007 - We really need to get audio & video & photos posted, from our past events!!). People like Josh Claybourn (and Michelle Malkin) have class, not to mention principle... This once again makes me think that perhaps [many of the] people of our generation may actually be more mature than some of our elders.
    [Update (10/16/08): Along these lines, I noticed, when reviewing the commentary from other bloggers who were at this D.C. Summit (something that I still need to look more into), this entry, from the weblog of Doug Welch, from nearby St. Louis. As mentioned in my other commentary about these experiences, Mr. Welch was also at our UIS College Republicans experience the prior week, as was Gateway Pundit - especially since that Vice-Presidential Debate, Debate Watch Party, and Post-Debate Sarah Palin Rally (rock concert?) were in the great city of St. Louis. Doug points to Lisa Schiffren's (she must bet new - then again, for my situation, "new" is relative...) entry at NRO's Corner blog: Teenagers Acting Better Than Their Elders, and Doug's Stix 1972 blog entry also reprinted the entire, uplifting and reassuring, article. The kids do seem to be alright, after all!]

    John Fund is speaking now, after the great Grover Norquist (who all of the UIS CRs here got to meet yesterday, as I may have mentioned last evening).

    I am glad that he is addressing the "motor-voter" issue... I remember when that proposal came up, in the mid-1990s. Illinois was one of those states which challenged the constitutionality of that bill, as did California (back when our states had Republican leaders... Then again, Cully-fone-ya now again has a "Republican" governor - the CA AFP chapter criticized him, during their state report; I was glad to see that). My state of Illinois was therefore sued by Attorney General Janet Reno, for challenging this National Voter Registration Act (NVRA).

    Mr. Fund just mentioned the 2000 election. One of my fears, in the aftermath of that election, is that Republicans and conservatives would turn against recognizing the reality of voter fraud (since it was the Democrats who were so emphatically alleging it). One reassuring article I printed out was this one, by Michelle Malkin:
    Who cares about election fraud now?, November 10, 2000

    [Note (10/13/08): In addition to the fact that they changed the past-column urls at least twice, another bad thing that happened, when they changed, is that those past columns were posted, without proper [without any, in fact] paragraph spacing. I see that that is still the case, even at this point. I really like the Jewish World Review ( conservative columnist archives, as they go back to the 1990s, and the urls still haven't changed, after all this time! (I like things that don't change...)]

    Check out: Michelle Malkin column archives

    There was likely vote fraud, which resulted in the great U.S. Congressman Bob Dornan (R-CA) losing his seat to the supposedly "conservative" Democrat Loretta Sanchez... The U.S. Congress held hearings, for quite awhile, on this controversy.

    The same is true for the Louisiana U.S. Senate race in 1996... Woody Jenkins would have made a great United States Senator (or a great U.S. Representative... too bad he lost again, earlier this year).

    I remember that the superb magazine Readers' Digest had an article expose on that Landrieu-Jenkins race... I think that I linked to it, in an entry here, about Mary Landrieu's 2002 election run-off, against Suzy Terrell. I was just remembering another Reader's Digest article, from years before [or perhaps this was a section of that same piece], which mentioned vote-fraud issues, with the "motor voter" law [National Voter Registration Act of 1993].
    [Update (10/16/08): As mentioned above, the Landrieu-Jenkins race was brought up, in one of my entries on Pearl Harbor Day 2002. It doesn't include a link to the RD piece, but I remember it was on "" (I think it was) - A search of that, in this blog's archives, also yields nothing. I was afraid that would no longer be up; I didn't know much about the site at that time, either. It seems that parts of the site do not appear to be reputable, but since the article in question was from Reader's Digest - a very reputable (and very excellent!! :-) magazine - here it is: They're Stealing the Election!, Trevor Armbrister, Readers' Digest, August 1997, p. 91

    I will try to put it online myself, with annotations. (The journalist who authored that excellent expose passed away in 2006.) Here is the Wall Street Journal's perspective, also from 1997, shared by FreeRepublic (which has also become a problematic website... but that's for a future discussion).

    [Update update (12/24/08): I have now put that Readers' Digest article online, retaining some of the annotations from the page, but also modifying it. At the bottom of that article, I included a couple of other articles, on the Landrieu-Jenkins 1996 U.S. Senate controversy in Louisiana.
    red bullet, for Readers Digest magazine article on the Landrieu-Jenkins 1996 U.S. Senate race They're Stealing the Election! - Trevor Armbrister - Readers Digest, August 1997]

    Just found this: POLITICO MAFIOSO: How Democrats Steal Elections - Top 10 Methods of Liberal Vote Fraud, Tony GOPrano

    Also, I would strongly recommend the work of Jim Condit, Jr. and Vicki Collier (daughter of the late James Collier, who with his brother Kenneth Collier authored VoteScam), who are with Network America and Citizens for a Fair Vote Count. As I've mentioned before, they helped uncover computerized vote fraud against Pat Buchanan in the 1996 Arizona GOP primary - and possibly in the 1996 Iowa Caucus as well - which stopped him from beating Bob Dole for the Republican presidential nomination. Even Senator John McCain (R-AZ) and Governor Fyfe Symington, Jr. (R-AZ) believed that Pat had won the Arizona primary, and that Dole was done for.]

    "I'll be out there signing my book!"
    - John Fund (after the post-speech applause had begun :-)

    ... Erick Erickson has now begun speaking. I was walking fast, through the Metro stations today, as I mentioned to Brandon, I missed seeing his speech when we were at CPAC; I did not want to again.

    While I do not like some of what takes place at (it has unfortunately started taking on some bad qualities... as happens to some sites), Erick-Woods Erickson and Mike Krempasky are great people.

    At the same table, at last night's Reagan Dinner banquet, which myself and the new CR Chairman went over to, so that I could get a photo with Dinesh D'Souza, and so Brandon could meet John Tsarpalas, I was surprised to see Erick Erikson also there... I would not have recognized him, if it wasn't for the name plate that some of the people here are wearing. (That's what can happen, for people who you know primarily through the Blogosphere.)

    Dr. Samuel Prescott... He was one of the three people who attended that "midnight ride" of Paul Revere. I remember that in 5th grade, it just referred to a "doctor" that accompanied them; I did name him however, in an AOL Trivia Forum (or perhaps it was Triviana) message board though.

    [Publishing now, but will need to do revisions and hyperlink annotation, above]

    John Stossel has begun speaking now; he is the closing speaker. I cited him the other day, in regards to Erin Brockovich.

    He is making some great hyperbolic comments about mass hysteria and junk science.

    "Crisis is the friend of the state?" I guess, but War is the health of the state.

    I remember earlier trying to figure out whether John Stossel opposed the Iraq war. I remember an excellent 20/20 piece, in which he attacked big government, as well as liberal interventionism abroad... Congressman Ron Paul (R-TX) was featured in that segment, in which they mentioned that people refer to him as "Dr. No." I remember thinking that it would be great to get a transcript of that, and that it might not be too difficult with Lexis-Nexis, as I remembered that Professor Tibor Machan was also one of those interviewed, so a search query sort may not be too difficult.

    It is very rare that a pro-liberty, anti-state advocate would be given a regular spot, on such a major show as 20/20 on ABC.

    As things are, once again, moving rapidly... This is where my recap from yesterday afternoon will go.

    Friday, October 10, 2008

    On Bloggers' Row... finally!
    (And connected to the internet... finally!!)

    I mentioned, at the bottom of my last entry, that I would be attending the 2nd-annual "Defending the American Dream" Summit, in [suburban] Washington, D.C.

    We unfortunately were not able to send anyone last year (though I did go to D.C. shortly afterwards, for a Robert Taft Club event, and other purposes).

    While the speaker line-up this time around is not like last year's, this should turn out to be a great event. (I hope and pray!... Past D.C. experiences have been mixed!)

    I was wanting to quick-blog a note, before I was leaving from Springfield, but that wasn't done. The Illinois chapter of Americans for Prosperity thankfully funded the flight costs for 4 of us (via Southwest Airlines), and the new Chairman of the College Republicans at the University of Illinois at Springfield (UIS CRs), Brandon Guiliano, was able to find a very-affordable hotel (the Holiday Inn Express), with a shuttle to the Metro line.

    Southwest Airlines logo Unfortunately, the flights left from the St. Louis airport (STL) at 6 AM [then again, that could also be considered "fortunately," as Lambert International is MUCH closer than the Chicago-area airports... And while the 6 AM thing was problematic, I did let myself sleep in quite a bit, yesterday afternoon. And we actually all carpooled to the airport, and despite arriving kind of late, were able to park, get the bus to the East Terminal (for Southwest Airlines), wait in line, check in our bags, get our boarding passes, go through security, and get to our Gate, with time to spare! :-)

    Once getting to our hotel [in Springfield, Virginia], we had time to freshen up and rest a bit, and in this case, they do provide FREE wi-fi (I'm talking about at the Holiday Inn Express... see below, for more on wireless connectivity issues). I posted Facebook Status and Twitter updates, saying that I wanted to know what other bloggers were going to be covering this Summit.

    I tried calling Erick Erickson [who I saw is in the line-up of speakers... like he was at the last CPAC - but whose speech I unfortunately missed! :-( ], but his phone is continuously busy. The same was true at the Republican National Convention [see below]... When I finally found [what may have been] Bloggers' Row, there in St. Paul, I was told that I could not go any further, unless someone invited me; I just wanted to visit, and say hello to those there. The same thing happened the second evening I tried... I had seen several other bloggers earlier that day [Stephen Green of VodkaPundit, Mary Katherine Ham, who I was on Bloggers Row with, at CPAC 2006 [when they did let me on!], Roger L. Simon, and "Gay Patriot West"... But they were actually in the Pajamas Media section [actually, "Pajamas TV" (PJTV - which I just found out about)], and not on Bloggers' Row, so would not have been able to assist. [I should note however, that on the last day of the Convention, GayPatriotWest was kind enough to give me a "COA Operations" badge pass, but the closing of the Convention was going on, so I had to hang around the arena... Unfortunately, the Convention Floor was the one place the "COA Operations" credentials badge did not grant one access to.]

    I did get ahold of Marcus Epstein this morning, while we were taking the Metro from our hotel to the Crystal City Marriot, where the "Defending the American Dream" Summit is being held. When I asked about Leadership Institute CLP people, like Craig Burgers and Kevin DeAnna, he told me that both of them would be there, and that Craig would be speaking... I called Craig, and he did pick up, and I think that he will be speaking tomorrow, in the breakout session on campus activism, as part of a panel. I started to tell him that I think that the new leaders of the UIS College Republicans would attend that one, but I might attend the one on the new media, as at this point (of my life/career/whatever), that would be more relevant to me. However, we went under a tunnel, when I started to say that [something that also happened, when on the phone with Marcus, but the signal came back]. I saw Craig speak at the first-ever CLP Activism Conference however, something that I was just talking to Ben Wetmore about the other day, in connection to the Flickr/recapping needs mentioned below.

    We quickly grabbed a bit to eat at the Crystal City Food Court, and then went to meet the AFP-IL people... a bus was going to arrive soon, to take us to the U.S. Capitol, for a rally and media event.

    We spoke to Jim Raftis and Joe Calomino, and another one of the staffers (I think) mentioned the issue of live-blogging this event... I was glad that that was brought up, because I was hoping to do the same - If there was a "Bloggers' Row," I wanted to be a part of it this time. Mr. Calomino knew what was on my mind, and took me upstairs, to where the main registration was... I saw Grover Norquist there (again - see below). I quickly signed up to be on Bloggers' Row, and was given a "BLOGGER" credential pass... I was told that they have a room for us, next to the main room where the program will be held, on which we will have a live feed, and will also be able to interview prominent individuals, involved with this year's Summit.

    Though I had to wait a bit (I was afraid of missing the bus), I spoke to Mr. Grover Norquist... He remembered seeing me, but did not remember where. [It has now been several occasions, and he is one of the most influential leaders in the United States.] In the process, someone came by, with a cap that I was surprised (!!) to see... It was Palin/McCain - Hey, that was my idea!! ;-) Mr. Norquist put it on, and I mentioned that I was needing to catch that bus to the Capitol... he nodded in recognition, and I asked if he was going there as well; he said he was going to a separate rally - But this worked out well, because the other three in our UIS CR crew, were right by the escalator. I told him who our new UIS College Republicans Chairman was, and everyone got to meet. I also mentioned that I was just added to Bloggers' Row (after not being able to live-blog from the Republican National Convention, due to wireless issues), and after not being allowed onto Bloggers' Row at CPAC 2008 [due to more-stringent notification restrictions]. (I am mentioning this, because he asked about it. I am in the Bloggers' Row room right now.)

    Speaking of Bloggers' Row at the 2nd-Annual "Defending the American Dream" Summit, and the wi-fi problems from the Republican National Convention last month, I was glad that we were being given free wireless access, in this room. However, when trying to connect, I ran into problems... I was able to obtain the Conference code, for connecting. However, the iBahn screen then said: The maximum number of concurrent conference users are already connected. You may try again at a later time. If you continue to experience this error, please contact your conference planner for additional connections.

    This was getting frustrating. After getting this opportunity to finally be at the center of Bloggers' Row, in the key period of a presidential election year, it seemed that a wireless-less problem may derail us, once again.

    Thanks to Erik Telford of Americans for Prosperity (and its project, RightOnline), for having the Marriott boost the allowed bandwidth, to accommodate more of us.

    Now, if only I could find where the Red Bull is!! (Even if I had gotten a wink of sleep last night, or on the plane/shuttle/hotel room, etc.., it has been quite grueling today, considering that we went from:

    Chatham/Springfield to St. Louis Airport (STL) Intermediate Parking [by car]
    STL Intermediate Parking to STL East Terminal [by airport shuttle - we're fortunate it came on time, as walking there would have been about one mile]
    St. Louis to Baltimore Washington Airport (BMW) [by plane]
    BWI Airport to the Holiday Inn Express (in Springfield, VA) [by cab... a long and very-expensive taxi ride!]
    Holiday Inn Express to the Metro Station (Franconia-Springfield, Blue Line) [by hotel shuttle]
    Metro Station to Crystal City Metro stop
    Crystal City Metro stop to the Crystal City Marriott [by foot]
    Crystal City Marriot to U.S. Capitol [by bus]
    U.S. Capitol to Crystal City Marriot [by bus] [[for me]] OR U.S. Capitol to Metro Station to Franconia-Springfield Metro stop to Holiday Inn Express [after calling the hotel shuttle to come pick them up], to get ready for the Reagan Dinner, back to... [[for Brandon, Braxton, and Sam]].

    That's a lot of traveling, in a very little time, with very little (or in my case, none) sleep.

    But I would actually say that things have gone rather well today. You will find out why, in my follow-up entry ;-)

    (And this is one that I really think I'll have to follow-up on, unlike before...)

    As for now, though, it seems like the Reception is well underway, and I'm going to go over, to sample some of the food, and perhaps conversation.

    But the conversations earlier today [with some great people, who I had communicated with online before, but only now met in person!! :-) ] have already made this trip worthwhile [well, that, and what will transpire tomorrow].

    Going over to the ballrooms (or banquet halls, right now...) - Actually, was just talking to another person who has come in here; this Bloggers' Row room is becoming increasingly populated. He is the Editor-in-Chief of a conservative student publication in Oregon.

    Saturday, October 04, 2008

    As the Homecoming game is likely well-underway, and there is no space remaining at this year's Springfield Right to Life annual dinner (this evening), but since I am going to try to make at least some of the game [for which I have to leave now], I am simply going to copy-and-paste the entry that I just published, at the UIS College Republicans weblog [].

    I am really sorry I was not able to get those entries, that I had "hoped" for, posted. This new exciting event [the Vice-Presidential candidate debate, in St. Louis, followed by the Post-Debate rally (or rock concert? ;-) featuring Governor Sarah Palin!!!], was the day before yesterday, and I just have to say something about it here... Even if it is just a brief overview. I wish I had time to do an analysis of the debate itself, like so many others have been able to do [I have NO IDEA how some of these people continuously do things like that, so quickly, easily, seemlessly, and frequently!!!], but this will have to do for now.

    From UIS College Republicans...


    Note (10/5/08): I am not an actively-enrolled Graduate student right now, and am only tagentially involved in campus affairs, so my awareness of what is going on, with respect to all of that, is often only indirect... [and I have to be careful of how involved I get, due to the emotional baggage attached...] I sometimes still help coordinate some regional and national events, though. The new leaders of the UIS College Republicans should be posting at that blog soon. I will also be able to rest easier, once the Flickr and YouTube stuff is completed - since most of it was from when I was leading the organization.

    Updates, and the Vice-President Debate
    In St. Louis, to see Governor Sarah Palin beat Senator Joe Biden

    Quite a few things have happened, even in the short time since I last posted. At least week's College Republicans meeting, the new UIS CR Executive Board created and appointed four new positions. One of those is Web/Com - After having so many experiences, from Sangamon County, to other parts of Illinois (Springfield to Chicago), to elsewhere in the Midwest (Missouri, Minnesota, Iowa, Minnesota again, Missouri again (!!!!)** etc..., to Washington, D.C., multiple times***, and having plenty of photos from these national, regional, and local events, as well as some video clips, including newscasts on which we were featured, it has been very frustrating not having them compiled, in a display-sharing format - especially since there are now so many widely-used services, that do this for you (Flickr, YouTube, Picasa, Google Video, etc...). We hope to have new web pages and recap compilations up soon.

    ** When I was Chairman in the Fall 2004 semester (the last time we had a presidential election), I remembered us attending the rallies (through Illinois "Victory 2004") in St. Louis, surrounding the Bush-Kerry debate. When I heard the news about another upcoming debate there, this time around, I thought we should look into possibilities, regarding rallies and attendance at the historic Vice-Presidential Debate, between Governor Sarah Palin and Senator Joe Biden.

    FACEBOOK Event page for the Sarah Palin events on Thursday, October 2nd Early this week, I received notice, from Jeremy Hagen (Chairman of the Missouri College Republicans), of the three events planned for Thursday, surrounding this debate. There would be a rally for Governor Palin at the debate site (Washington University in St. Louis), followed by the huge Debate Watching Party, at Chaifetz Arena in Saint Louis University (SLU), at which 10,000 people were expected, and after which Governor Sarah Palin would be speaking to us.

    Despite the uncertainty of ticket availability (so no all-group e-mail was sent out), and despite these events being during work and class times, we made arrangments the prior day (Wednesday) - as well as on Thursday morning - and attended these events. Those UIS College Republicans who were able to attend, and for whom we obtained tickets, included myself, Matt Mau, Braxton Denton, Ryan Melchin, Lexi Kirschbaum, Kelsey Quinn, and Ryan Roth.

    Matt and Braxton were admitted into the Debate itself (at Washington University in St. Louis) and Lexi and Kelsey got to be on the Arena floor, right in front of the podium, when Governor Palin gave her exciting and motivational Post-Debate Rally address. (That was preceded by a talented country singer [trying to find the name - It sounded like "Sarah Maran"... But we weren't sure exactly], and then, the actual "Straight Talk Express" bus drove into the arena!!)

    I am going to try to make the trip to campus right now, for the remainder of this evening's Homecoming events. [Our entries in the UIS Homecoming Parade had to be cancelled, as probably did the other political-related* entries, due to very-unfortunate - and very troubling!! - developments... Though that is a topic for another time (though that time will likely have to come soon, due to the problems our crazy Governor continues to cause everyone)... It's neat to see F.I.R.E., the ACLU, the Obama supporters, and the Republicans all on the same side, though!] Our new College Republicans Chairman, Brandon Guiliano, will be sworn in as Vice-President of the Student Government Association at the University of Illinois at Springfield (UIS SGA) at halftime, during the Homecoming game.

    *Update (10/05/08): I should have said "campaign-related" parade entries... I am not on campus much, nor that involved in university affairs anymore, but from what I have heard, there were political candidates and issues represented in the Parade. However, I do not know of any campaign organizations that had entries, like was done in prior years. (And the College Republicans did not "drop out" of the Parade... Our members were planning to walk in the entries for the candidate campaigns, but those entries had to be cancelled yesterday morning, due to the controversy regarding Governor Blagojevich.)

    I hope that we have some recaps, photos, and video posted here soon, regarding our recent experiences in Saint Louis... and perhaps some commentary and analysis of the VP Debate itself as well. I am sorry I was not able to post much, in the way of recaps, regarding our experiences at the Republican National Convention, a month ago, in St. Paul, Minnesota. We hope to have those services mentioned above (photo and video sharing) implemented soon.

    *** Unlike last year (when we almost did, but didn't), we will have a delegation this time, at the "Defending the American Dream" Summit, in Washington, D.C., later this month. This will be our organizations 10th trip to the Washington, D.C. area within about a four-year time period.


    Defending the American Dream summit in Washington, D.C. - Americans for Prosperity