Mollohan the Albatross, Mrs. Microphone, and other assorted odds and ends.
So, let's start with Nowhwere Man's (Alan Mollohan) recent decision to step down from the House Ethics Committee. I just love how when this story broke, he refused to do this, and said all kinds of crap about how it was all trumped up, wrong info, politically motivated, blah blah blah. The amount of indignation shown by Nowhere Man, far outstripped the amount of substantive defensive comments, other than "Hey, we got lucky in real estate." And now, amazingly, he decides to step down. I forget where I read it (I think it was the NYTimes, when this story first broke, but I can't seem to find it right now), but the gist was that Mollohan on the ethics committee was an albatross around Nancy Pelosi's neck. And this was just a day or two after the story broke. And now he decides to step down? Maybe there was some truth to the baggage this was creating for Minority Leader Pelosi.
Is Chris Wakim the answer to Mollohan? Who knows? Maybe he's a gangster or something; he’s got big ties to the gambling industry and/or video slots (which, has never really bothered me - we need more gambling, not less, in this state). So, he might be a crook too. Those businesses always seem to be slimy. But at least he'd be a different crook. Mollohan has been there for 20 years, and as far as I can tell, besides funneling federal dollars to companies that don't seem to do anything other than pay his buddies and campaign contributors hugeass salaries, he hasn't done anything. He's a poster boy for term limits.
Moving right along. Betty Ireland. We had her seemingly daily check in with Chicago Furlip (Michael Agnello on 58Live) on Monday to tell everyone how great a job she's doing (I swear I think Ireland has a microphone bolted to her chin, because she's always talking into one) with training everyone about these new voting machines. Which, now we find out, aren't quite all squared away. King Kent Carper is all wound up and outraged as evidenced in Phil Kabler's article in Sunday's paper. Evidently, the place that sells these machines (ES&S) is in trouble in several states, for missing deadlines and errors in their product, and its delivery of machines and/or applicable software to the states. Of course, all the states are under the gun to comply with the federal legislation aftermath of the Florida 2000 idiots who couldn't read a ballot, and as usual, some states are cutting it close getting their stuff from ES&S on time. Plus, there appears to be some problem with the ability of disabled people to use the current machines in the current "early voting" phase, for some reason. It was funny to hear Ireland squirm when Milquetoast Johnson on Furlip's show point blank asked her if WV was in compliance with some new federal law (maybe it was the Help America Vote Act - HAVA, I forget). Ireland said she "believes" that anyone who wants to go vote in early voting will be able to do so. She didn't simply say, "Yes." That was more telling than anything else she blabbered about the whole time. Johnson even asked her again, point blank, and she gave the same clichéd, careful, and purposefully ambiguous answer. There's only one word for her constant media whoring: Pathetic.
And we also have an indictment against Wanda Carney and Betty Jarvis. The background is here, here , and here. Well, there evidently is enough evidence to charge them with a misdemeanor, so says the Mingo County Grand Jury. Of course, Wanda's lawyer, Jason Huber was publicly commenting how this is all some sort of witch-hunt, and the fact it's "only" a misdemeanor is telling. We'll see. In other Wanda Carney news, the recently "settled" lawsuit that Carney had with the City of Nitro that she was publicly trumpeting not too long ago as some sort of "victory" for her, was a joke. She didn't win anything. I saw a copy of the final order. The City of Nitro essentially doesn't admit to anything AND, the only "real" thing that is agreed to by the City is to pay her lawyer's (Huber, again) fees. But to hear Wanda on the radio, you'd think this was the second coming of Brown v. BOE Topeka.
And lastly (as it's getting late, even for creatures of the night), let's look at the Democratic State Senate race between Dave Higgins and Erik Wells. Higgins was a big supporter of Danny Jones' Worker Tax, as a Charleston City Councilman. That's a death sentence as far as I'm concerned. And he's for a NASCAR track in Kanawha County? He should just change his name to Pan DerMan. I wonder if he wins, will he immediately proposes a dollar per week tax on everyone who works in WV to help pay for that NASCAR track?
Of course, the fact that Erik Wells needs to go out and get a real job before he runs for anything, doesn't make him a guy I'm going to feel comfortable with either. Plus, he's married to Natalie Tennant. Call me a pig, but I just can't vote for anyone remotely related to the only woman Mountaineer Mascot at WVU. I don't want to see guys in the WVU Pom Squad, and I don't want to see a female WVU Mountaineer. The WVU students knew how to properly show their "support" to Tennant when she was the Mountaineer. She was showered with cups, ice, paper, and a healthy chorus of boos whenever she approached the student sections at basketball or football games. Plus, she's related to some past WV political bigwigs somewhere, and I think she's been mooching off the state in some politically appointed flunky position since they both had to quit their "read the teleprompter" jobs, and she couldn't beat Ken Hechler for the right to take on Betty "Where's the nearest microphone" Ireland in 2004.