Tag Archives: Politics


Ice Out!

Today’s post comes from Congressman Loomis Beechly, representing Minnesota’s 9th District – all the water surface area in the state.

Greetings 9th Districters!

Finally, we are in the season when things in the fabled 9th have literally become more fluid as the ice has been declared “out” over almost the entire district, give or take a few of the far, far northern lakes where pond hockey continues almost to the 4th of July.

This relative warmth relaxes and releases things.

As your elected representative I have been frozen, just like you, through most of the winter. I see that I have only produced three formal press statements since last November!

Critics say this has to do with my management style – namely that my staff hates working for me and they’re frustrated over constantly shifting positions and policy decisions. But I prefer to think of my office as a high-expectations environment where my demanding standards can surprise some under-prepared and off-balance assistants.

Yes, there is a lot of turnover in my office. But that creates opportunity for fresh-faced young people to learn first-hand how disheartening the world of work can really be! So if you know any youth who need such a lesson, have them contact me ASAP, since I’m doing pretty much everything on my own right now!

I’m not complaining. As many highly driven, financially successful business leaders like Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling will tell you, spare-time pursuits like self-reflection and second-thoughting are highly overrated. If you have something to say, why not just get it out there, unfiltered?

Accordingly, here’s the big news – with the softening terrain there will be an influx of visitors from exotic distant locales like Chicago and Denver. And with them come jobs! It would be wrong for me to take personal credit for the seasonal uptick in employment, but job numbers are looking better nationwide, as long as you don’t look at the other numbers that aren’t as encouraging.

That’s welcome news that might not have happened if there was a different person representing you in Washington. How so? Previous staffers have discouraged me from “going public” with this line of reasoning, but my logic has been upheld in literally dozens of time-travel scenarios. Changing one historic detail puts everything else in flux, so consider these items linked – I am in office and tourist dollars are on the way. End of story!

And with those visitors comes an increase in work all across the 9th district to guide, feed, lodge, entertain and clean up after our guests! And by “we”, I mean “you”, since I don’t deal personally with tourists even though I am a people person! Most of the people I schmooze are funders and power brokers – folks just like me who happen to have things that I need, like money or a vote. So of course I love them and we get along famously!

Ordinary tourists are more like demanding constituents who have many urgent needs and not a lot to offer in exchange. I realize that may not sound so good, so disregard it if you’re starting to feel mad. We’re a little short staffed right now, and having to handle your tirade will not make things any easier down at the office.

Besides, I could use the relief. It’s spring!

That’s all for now. God Bless America and so forth!

Your Congressman,
Loomis Beechly

Does it help things to speak freely?

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Congressman Beechly's State of the Shanty Adddress

Money Storm!

Today’s post is a fundraising letter from Congressman Loomis Beechly, representing Minnesota’s 9th District – all the water surface area in the state.

Greetings Constituents,

Yes, the forecast is alarming.

But I want to assure you that I am fully aware that a deluge is headed this way, and I have taken every possible step to prepare for the coming storm.

The expected onslaught will yield unprecedented piles and prodigious accumulations – exactly the type of crisis I have dreamed of facing from the moment I was sworn into this office.

And now, thanks to the Supreme Court, it is coming true. The country’s richest people are finally free to dump boatloads of money on me!

The court’s ruling in the McCutcheon case means individual Americans are no longer limited in the number of politicians they can support with direct contributions. While they will still have a $2600 ceiling per candidate per election, the overall election cycle restriction of $48,600 for Federal office seekers has been removed.

So if you have ever said to me, “Really, you’re the next Congressman I’d write a check to if I hadn’t already hit the limit!”, the McCutcheon decision means that excuse is gone and now is the time to pony up.

And yes, I realize that $2,600 would buy a very nice pony indeed, but as I’ve said at hundreds of chicken dinner fundraisers over the past ten years, “Why waste that kind of cash on such an extravagant gift for your daughter when I’ll be more grateful and I’ll actually listen when you call to offer your sage advice!”

Don’t expect others to take care of this. I don’t have any illusions about this making much difference to the average residential contributor in the waterlogged 9th district. After all, most people who live on the lake have boats, and boats consume dollars faster than horses eat oats. Ordinary people would be much better off giving their money to some worthy non-profit, like your local community radio station!

But major, major, bottomless-bank-account political funders coast to coast – you’ve got the resources and you know who you are. You now have it within your reach to make a maximum offering to every member of Congress! And what hobbyist hasn’t dreamed of collecting the complete set?

Trust me, the complete set has dreamed of being collected by you!

Mega-donors, your phone is about to start ringing. Yes, there will be pleading, cajoling, and some begging. The clamoring voices of Congressmen may all begin to sound the same to you, but if, in the background, you hear the call of a loon, that will be me!

Congressman Loomis Beechly
Minnesota’s 9th

Ever been strong-armed?


Possibly As Qualified As Anyone

Today’s post comes from Congressman Loomis Beechly, representing Minnesota’s 9th District – all the water surface area in the state.

Congressman Beechly's State of the Shanty Adddress
Congressman Beechly’s State of the Shanty Adddress

Greetings Constituents,

You may have noticed the 9th District is getting mentioned in the news lately but if you haven’t been paying close attention I want to assure you that nothing is probably wrong. That blurry film clip of a young man losing his footing and falling out of the frame could have been caused by anything, and the suggestion that I intended for it to happen is only that – guesswork.

But then that’s the news business for you – you don’t have to literally do anything to get talked about these days. There are any number of mysterious reasons why the press might turn its spotlight on you.

For instance, they keep the contender’s names secret for 50 years after the voting ends, so there’s no way to know for sure if I have or haven’t been nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize. But since it came out yesterday that Russian President Vladimir Putin is on this year’s list, I figure there’s hope for everyone – including me!

One of the greatest things about the NPP is that you don’t have to be a particularly peaceful person personally to win it – you only have to have done something to advance the cause. This is very encouraging for me because, as my staff will tell you, sometimes I can be rather short tempered! For example, I do admit to reacting passionately the other day when a junior aide failed to proofread my talking points and sent me out in front of the world’s press to denounce the Russian invasion of “Crimeany”.

Bryan, that wasn’t a “shove”. I was giving the reporters a physical demonstration of a valid defensive strategy against aggression. Actively and vigorously seeking arms-length distance from an unbalanced opponent is much more of a pacifist response than sending in unmarked troops or even bombs. The fact that you didn’t do anything to attack me doesn’t negate the usefulness of that relatively peaceful approach. And your concussion really says more about how unforgiving gravity can be rather than any kind of harsh attitude towards subordinates or overall lack of impulse control on my part.

And like I say, how you act on a personal level isn’t the point – winning the Nobel Peace Prize is all about the effect you have on the world. And to my knowledge I haven’t started any wars, which is something not everyone can say!

We won’t hear the name of this year’s winner for quite some time, but I’m content to wait knowing I have not been officially eliminated … yet. In the meantime, let’s keep the chatter down. Gossip is fun, but we have important work to do!

Your Congressman,
Loomis Beechly

What promotes peace?

Beechly faces down an  onrushing boat.

The Mean Girl Strategy

Today’s post comes from Congressman Loomis Beechly, representing Minnesota’s 9th district – all the water surface area in the state.

Beechly addresses some "cool" people.
Beechly addresses some “cool” people.

Greetings, Constituents!

I’m enjoying my summer break at home in the 9th district by spending endless hours fishing, swimming, floating around on inner tubes, and thinking about clearing out weeds along the shoreline. I probably won’t do any aquatic plant management though, becuase I always wind up taking a nap once I start to read about it.

One thing I’ve learned about lawmaking is that it gets very, very dreary once you start to read and study the regulations you’re considering. Working out a compromise with other people can get even more complicated! Thinking is hard!

It’s much more fun to just react emotionally to random things you’ve heard. That’s why I’m so excited about this new development in the 2016 Presidential contest, courtesy of Reince Priebus, chairman of the Republican National Party.

He has issued a challenge – if NBC and CNN choose to air some planned and assumed-to-be-complimentary docu-dramas about expected Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton, Republicans will refuse to cooperate with them on the broadcast of 2016 presidential debates.

This is smart because in the last election cycle, Presidential Debates were showing signs of getting to be too popular. If you’re like me, you don’t want to get drawn into something that a lot of people look at where you don’t control every detail.

I’m not a Republican (or Democrat), but I want to congratulate Reince on finally getting us to the place where we all want to be – from a capital where people work hard on details and pay lip service to compromise and bi-partisanship, to a Congress where there’s no need to pretend – all the animosity is out in the open and the Mean Girl Strategy can be freely applied.

You may remember the Mean Girl Strategy from Junior High – “Be friends with Hilary if you want, but if we catch you hanging out with her, it’s over between us forever!”

Some people may call this childish and petty, but those people are losers and should be shunned!

This gives us a nice, easy short-cut to our difficult decision making. I’m sure I don’t have to tell you how incredibly difficult it is to represent you in the Halls of Congress, but let me be blunt – your flip-floppiness on major issues leaves me wondering, sometimes, what I should do. For example, on the recent events in Egypt I’ve heard from you that we should:

  • Cut off all aid to Egypt’s military
  • Increase aid to Egypt’s military
  • Invade
  • Bomb the pyramids
  • Fund more Walleye farms on the Nile.

Too many options! What am I supposed to do?

When it comes to complicated issues like this, it’s much easier to figure out who we all hate so we can listen to their pronouncements and just be against whatever they say, regardless of the reasoning.

Soon I’ll be going back to Our Nation’s Capital to do the Work You Elected Me To Do – pointing my finger and stomping my foot! ¬†Yes, it’s a difficult assignment, but not nearly as hard as it could be!

Your Congressman,
Loomis Beechly

When the work gets complicated, what’s your favorite short cut?

The Inaugural Thrall

Today’s post comes once again from Congressman Loomis Beechly, representing all the water surface area in the State of Minnesota.

My Dear Constituents,

Well, what with the long wait beforehand, the political stargazing, the ceremony, the speeches, the ride/walk down Pennsylvania Avenue, the delay before the parade, the parade when it was new, the parade at middle age, the rest of the parade, the parties and balls and endless evening hours of whatnot, I now feel completely and thoroughly inaugurated.

I loved my vantage point on the swearing-in and the president’s speech. From where I stood, he was about as big as a large freckle on the knuckle of my left hand. I was too far away to make much of the fashion conversation that was swirling around the event, though even at that distance I could tell the First Family was dressed in complimentary shades of blue. And my hat is off to the designers of the formless color blobs they were wearing.



I sure am glad I grabbed something to eat while I was on the way to my post. Try the corned beef from The Star and Shamrock Tavern and Deli at 1341 H Street, NE. It’s amazing, and unlike my neighbor’s cup of chili from the Union Station Potbelly, it was able to pass through security without a glitch!

Lots of commentators were pointing out that from now on, Obama is free because he doesn’t have to face the voters again. That may be so, but at no point during the day did he look to me like a man who could do whatever he wanted, especially during that parade. It might have been nice to take a nap right then, but I don’t think he would be allowed to do it, even inside that awesome car he was riding in. No question – the president and his family were kinda stuck. I guess it makes a perverse kind of sense that to be officially installed in an office that you spend years running for, it takes up an entire day.

And although there was plenty of adulation, anybody who has ever held public office knows that nonsense stops as soon as the last marching band turns the final corner, and the criticism begins.

I could only hear some of what the president said during his speech, but as the person who represents an all-water district I have to say I was dismayed that he didn’t mention fish, fishing, cabins, recreation, docks, lures, worms or speedboats at all in his Inaugural address. You’d think it would be easy to insert something so appealing into a big crowd-pleaser of a speech. Something like, “We, the people, still believe that every citizen deserves a basic measure of security and dignity and a bucket of live bait alongside a Minnesota lake.”

Simple, but apparently too difficult to do. Sigh.

Am I offended? Let’s just say that I’m kind of thinking I’ll never vote for him again!

Anyway, now that the pageantry is over it’s time to get back to the business of governing. Thanks as always for your support, especially since I seem to have such trouble accomplishing thing. But remember that as your Congressman, I am here to do what you would do, and I suspect you’d have a tough time producing results too! In that regard, I am proud to say I’m probably your perfect representative!

Hon. Loomis Beechly

It sounds like Representative Beechly has a little bit of regret that he committed to the full slate of inaugural festivities and also to another full term as a phony member of Congress. But like a good public servant, he persevered.

When have you felt locked in to participation in an endless event?

Deadline Pressure

Seeing with considerable satisfaction the way a ticking clock got the deadbeats in the US Congress to finally pass a piece of (imperfect) legislation, I commissioned Schuyler Tyler Wyler, America’s Rhyming Poet Laureate, to write a few lines about the value of time limits.

And of course I told him I needed to have something in hand no later than 20 minutes after the challenge was issued. If he couldn’t deliver, he should just forget it, I said, knowing full well that STW never passes up a commission.

His secret? He becomes a lot less picky as the time grows short.

Many lines will man diminish,
casting shadows o’er his heart.
Like a line emblazoned “finish”
set too far from one marked “start.”

Lengthy lines can form for tickets
Timberlines sit near the tree
Don’t cross lines set up by pickets.
Don’t cross lines prefaced by “fe”.

One line always worth preserving
though he’ll never, ever ask you,
every guy thinks he’s deserving.
it’s the one that follows “mascu”.

An exciting line is “chorus”.
An archaic one is “clothes”.
Lines called “border” can be porous.
Lines with water can get froze.

There are many lines that plague us:
Lines for greeting at a wedding.
And the kind they make in Vegas.
Not for marriage, but for betting.

Tucked behind a velvet curtain
sultry lines designed for “chat”.
In a hospital for certain
please avoid a line that’s “flat”.

One line makes all writers tremble
just one line gets in their head.
Makes their noggins disassemble.
That’s a line that’s clearly “dead”.

For a deadline makes them humble.
Whether genius or a jerk.
It’s the deadline makes them crumble.
Sets them free to do their work.

When have you been assisted by an inflexible deadline?

Idea People

Today’s post, for the second day in a row, comes from Dealmaker and Promoter Spin Williams, who is constantly in residence at The Meeting That Never Ends.


What a fine group of Idea Generators you are!

I saw lots of promising notions in response to my post about Wright Brothers Day yesterday, but two stood out because they are both complimentary AND mutually exclusive, which is NOT an easy thing to do!

First, Jim of Clark’s Grove came along with this:

Screen shot 2012-12-17 at 7.08.58 PM

And a little while later, Anna followed with this:

Screen shot 2012-12-17 at 7.08.40 PM

In these two inspired comments, you see the future writ out so we can know it in advance. Because I believe that science will develop an amazingly adept lie detector. Why? It must! The world demands it!

In fact, a recent study by the Government Office Of Falsehoods, Balderdash And Lying (G.O.O.F.B.A.L.) found that untruths are so pervasive and influential in our public and private lives, fully 68.2% of everything anyone hears in the course of a normal lifetime is entirely made up. A person who could reliably identify these fibs would literally hold the key to our shared destiny!

And yes, I totally made up that agency and the statistic. You could tell, I’m sure. But not all falsehoods are so easy to spot!

Jim’s idea – creating an infallible “Lie-dentifyer” would be a boon to all the world! And it would spark a frenzy of research and development aimed at creating Anna’s idea – an equally infallible Story Generator.

Finally, we would have a completely fib-based economy. That’s bound to be an improvement. True, we’d have no clearer fix on the truth, but all our wars would be words-only!

I can’t wait!

Your far-sighted pal,

I’m not sure we don’t already have the fib-based economy Spin talks about.

But let’s assume that down in your basement workshop you found a way to develop the can’t-miss lie detector Jim suggested, or the totally believable story generator Anna envisioned. Would you keep it to yourself for personal use only, or share it with the world? And why?

Christmas Standoff!

Today’s post comes from 9th District Congressman Loomis Beechly, representing all the water surface area in the State of Minnesota.

Greetings Constituents,

I’ve been getting calls from 9th Districters who want to know how I stand on the latest political standoff, so I want to take a moment here to say that I am delighted at the way the Fiscal Cliff talks are going!

All The Stuff That Matters Is Happening In Here
All The Stuff That Matters Is Happening In Here

Think of it. Just these two guys are having a string of private meetings to come to an agreement on a huge deal that profoundly effects everybody else while the rest of us watch and wonder.

It’s like spending the whole month of December standing around in St. Peter’s Square, waiting for a plume of white smoke that means the Cardinals have finally found a compromise, except that in this case the Vatican is more like an ice fishing shack and the guys inside aren’t wearing funny hats, they’re playing poker, drinking beer, smoking cigars, and arguing about whether catching big fish through a hole in the ice is a matter of skill or dumb luck.

I can only guess that before long, the door will open and they’ll flop some smelly fishy carcass onto the snow and tell us it’s a last-minute take-it-or-leave-it kind of deal that is our only hope of saving the economy from another crash onto the scary rocks. That’s Democracy!

Well, not really.

Some of my colleagues say they will examine the deal very carefully and hold it to a set of high standards. But my promise to you is that I will plug my nose and vote for anything that comes out of the shack if it keeps the Ship Of State afloat, no matter how ugly it is, regardless of how brutally it does what it does.

Because people who live in an all-water district know that staying afloat is our highest and best goal. Yes, we 9th Districters understand that sinking feeling on a level that other Americans can only imagine. When you can’t breathe, tax brackets and the safety net are just silly details people talk about.

Actually, I take that back. A safety net is pretty important thing when you can’t breathe.

But my point is this – as your Congressman, I have been relieved of the need to think very hard about this one. All I’ll have to do is react, explain, and probably apologize later.

In fact, let me apologize right now.

“Sorry, constituents, but I felt I had no choice. It was either vote for a flawed deal, or watch the sweet world disappear from view, flailing helplessly against the grasping weeds of Lake Default as they pull us down into the forever darkness!”

But maybe that’s too grim an analogy for you, so let’s think of it instead as the elementary school holiday pageant. The kids are trying their hardest, so remember that your role is to stand in the back of the gym and applaud. Just be grateful. There’s already too much stress in the season to waste time looking for more.

Have a lovely day and a wonderful Christmas, or whatever other holiday you observe! The world isn’t going to end and 2013 will arrive on time, bringing plenty for us to complain about.

Your Congressman,
Loomis Beechly.

I always appreciate the Congressman’s honesty, even when I don’t quite get his point. But I trust that he is truly telling us what he believes, which is a Very Brave Thing To Do when your thoughts don’t make much sense.

When have you endured a Long Wait?

Bart to Mitt: Hibernate!

Today’s post comes from Bart, the bear that found a smart phone in the woods. His offering has been translated from its original language – Ursus Textish.

Yo, Bart here.

Bart Blackberry2

Looks like that Mitt Romney’s handlers and hangers-on have all dropped off, leaving him pretty much alone – as alone as a bear in the December woods! So I kinda feel close to him in a way that makes it OK for me to offer some advice.

Mitt, I’ve seen the stories about you going to movies and filling your own car with gas and riding amusement park rides by yourself and scribbling long notes to old friends and staring out the window. The writers of these articles are amazed that you are doing ordinary things. And they can’t help comparing all these dumb time-wasters to what you would be doing if you’d won the election – planning your inauguration and solving the problems of the world.

Yes, you were almost president, but now it’s your picture that comes up when someone googles “pathetic”. Time to get over it.

In my opinion, you need to hibernate.

It’s great therapy and totally natural. We all go through it – some more than others. When the food dries up and the weather turns cold, you get this feeling there’s really nothing to enjoy about being alive.

That’s when a good long sleep can help a guy adjust.

Anyway, “sleep” isn’t really the right word for it – you just become half awake, grumpy and non-responsive, sort of like President Obama in that first debate.

You can afford the time off, Mitt. Just dig a shallow depression in some overlooked corner of one of your estates, and curl up under a bed of leaves and branches. Let the country fly off a fiscal cliff while you drift into a state of torpor.

Nothing you can do or say at this point will make any difference anyway.

And when you do wake up, we’ll still be here. Things will either be worse or not. But in either case, you’ll be OK and you’ll feel a whole lot better – in fact you’ll feel like ripping open a rotting log to see if there are some grubs inside! It’s an entitlement – forest style!

That’s where you want to be! So stop appearing in public. Give them a chance to forget about you.

I predict in three years you’ll be able to re-surface with a fresh haircut and a nice suit and people will think you’re brand new. So why not give it a try? After all, what (else) have you got to lose?

Your Pal,

Bart makes some good points, but it’s hard to know the mind of a politician. But it does make one think – you’ve just run for president and lost – how do you put that on your resume?

Loose Lips Mock Cliffs

At ease, civilians!

But watch your language when it comes to casual talk about “going over the fiscal cliff”. We Public Safety Enthusiasts are alarmed at the decision by those who frame our discussions this way. To call the upcoming budget deadline a “Fiscal Cliff” does not give enough credit to cliffs!

No Cliff Talk!
No Cliff Talk!

A real cliff is a very serious thing indeed. Real cliffs don’t discriminate between the rich and the poor. They are not indexed and there are no exemptions. Think of a cliff as the sudden withdrawal of terrestrial support while gravity remain in place and is as vigorous as ever.

Can we survive without earth under our feet? I say no! This is undeniable. Instead, pundits gab with mock seriousness about “going over”.

This kind of talk creates what is widely known as a reverse visioning hazard. We already understand that visioning is a key principle in leading an organization – helping people “see” their future in order to make it happen. The more we envision a thing, like going over a cliff together, the closer it comes to reality.

And what if we DO go over the “cliff”, and it turns out to be Not That Bad? Suddenly, cliffs become part of the everyday lexicon, and “going over” is just something you do every now and then. No big deal? Wrong! Let’s make sure cliffs remain dreadful. We should speak of them in hushed tones, and stay away from every kind – figurative, fiscal, and physical. That’s my advice!

Yours in groundedness,
B.S.O. Rafferty

Have you ever gotten over a useful, protective fear?