Tuesday, January 4, 2011

The new year

Today marks a blogaversary - the 4th birthday of The Left Bank of the Ohio River near Milepost 606. Our first entry, four years ago today, celebrated the 110th Congress and specifically the election of Congressman John Yarmuth and the then-incoming Speaker of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi.

In those four years the political landscape has gone from the newness of 2007 through the soaring heights of the election of Barack Obama as the Republic's 44th president, levelling off and slowing donw in 2009 during the president's first year, to a reversing-of-fortunes election in 2010 where the glory-fires of 2008 were doused by 2010's Tea. A brief progressive renaissance took place in the closing days of the anything-but lame duck session of the 111th Congress.

The 112th Congress will convene sometime this week with the Dark Side of the Aisle in charge being led by its orange-tinted barkeeper's son, John "Hell No" Boehner, the United States Representative from Ohio's 8th Congressional District, a collection of suburban and rural counties along southern Ohio's border with Indiana, just north of Cincinnati and west of Dayton.

Also convening this week, actually today, is the 2011 Kentucky General Assembly, led in the Democratic House by Speaker Greg Stumbo and in the Republican Senate by President David Williams, who is also a candidate for governor this year. I do not have any hope or expectation of an exceptional or even a successful Session. Our system of government in Frankfort needs an overhaul but that isn't likely to happen. Our filing dealine for members of the General Assembly - and all other offices in the Commonwealth - falls at the end of this month with the Primary a few short months later in mid-May.

This needs to change. While I disagree with nearly everything else promoted by Senator Williams, known as the Bully from Burkesville (in Cumberland County), he has for several Sessions now put forth the idea of moving the filing deadline to sometime in April and the Primary to sometime in August. As I have each time he has previously introduced such a measure, I lend my support to this effort. I believe it is in the best interests of the Commonwealth. Chances are good this measure will go nowhere, as it has in its previous iterations. Why would this year be any different?

In fact, because of the ongoing governor's race, this year will probably be far worse. Everything which is said and done will be couched in terms of who it will or will not help in the gubernatorial election this November. It is a hopeless course. The legislators and the Commonwealth would probably be better served if the two Houses convened and immediately adjourned so we could go ahead and run the governor's race without any interference with the need to actually govern. It is a sorry state of affairs.

There are other races on the ballot this year, all Constitutional offices with their operations in Frankfort. I'm participating in two of those - Adam Edelen's race for Auditor of Public Accounts and Allison Lundergan Grimes' race for Secretary of State. You will hear more about these in postings later in the political season.

Louisville inaugurated its new mayor Greg Fischer yesterday and will install a new Metro Council President this Thursday, fully expected to be 10th District Councilman Jim King, Mr. Fischer's opponent in last year's Democratic Primary. I expect the work of the Metro Council [where I should note I am employed] to be far more productive than either Kentucky's General Assembly or the Republic's 112th Congress and its ongoing Senate.

2011 does not promise to be a progessive year by anyone's imagination. So, in the meantime, I will make my postings - hopefully more than in the last year - and continue the ongoing life we all live, full of ups and downs and curves and straightways. Party on. Thanks Be To God.

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The Archives at Milepost 606


Louisville, Kentucky, United States
Never married, liberal Democrat, born in 1960, opinionated but generally pleasant, member of the Episcopal Church. Graduate of Prestonia Elementary, Durrett High, and Spalding University; the first two now-closed Jefferson County Public Schools, the latter a very small liberal arts college in downtown Louisville affiliated with the Roman Catholic Sisters of Charity of Nazareth. My vocation and avocation is politics. My favorite pastime is driving the backroads of Kentucky and southern Indiana, visiting small towns, political hangouts, courthouses, churches, and cemeteries. You are welcome to ride with me sometime.