Entries Tagged 'SD' ↓
December 30th, 2013 — SD, South Dakotans, Treasurer's office
Not sure when this article was written (somewhere between 2002-2009?) because there is no published date or author, but it is an intriguing interview with the last Democratic Treasurer, his take on secrecy and corruption in Pierre, and how the media contributed (ignored) the secrecy;
Since serving as Treasurer of South Dakota, Dick Butler has overhauled banking practices, overhauled primary banking contracts of colleges and universities, overhauled collateralization of public deposits and in six years returned unclaimed properties accounts that totaled more than 500% of what had been returned to citizens during the previous 20 years combined. Millions of dollars have been returned to South Dakota citizens through his efforts.
During the time Butler has been Treasurer his actions have been the impetus for the creation of a gag law intended to silence his efforts. The Commissioner of Banking in South Dakota, Richard Duncan, wrote a memo to all state banks in South Dakota advising them not to give information to Butler regarding executive accounts, and a bill was proposed that was intended to strip the State Treasurer of his banking authority for colleges and universities.
The controversial gag law, spurred by Janklow, was passed in 1996. It closed some corporate records and prohibited state officials from discussing information on investigations into the actions of corporations.
Isn’t it ironic that Butler rightfully performed his job, and what does the GOP do? Pass a law preventing him from doing so. Fast forward to 2013, where are current governor is bragging about all this money the state is receiving in unclaimed property. Why does the governor have this money? Because the state treasurers since Butler have made ZERO effort to return it.
I also find it ironic that Butler calls out Mercer for not reporting any of this while it was happening, fast forward again to 2013 where Mercer is crying to AG Jackboots for not giving him information on Benda’s death. Geez, Bob, are you surprised? Oh that’s right, when Janklow’s administration did these things, you turned the other way . . .
And here is another classic from 2009, about the secrecy of ‘The Governor’s Club’. Same cast of characters protecting the past while securing the secrecy and money of the future;
The Governor’s Club has been a discrete part of political fundraising in South Dakota for more than 30 years. For a $1,000 donation, contributors buy a place at the table – and a position of potential influence – with South Dakota’s governor at club events that are not open to the general public.
Lucas Lentsch, executive director for the South Dakota Republican Party in Pierre, said it would be wrong to presume that $1,000 club members get “perks or additional access” to the governor.
Oh Lucas Losemylunch, you are a funny one;
And there are state contract holders on the Governor’s Club list. They include former state Attorney General Roger Tellinghuisen, a Spearfish lawyer with $75,000 legal services contract; Dr. Michael Rost of Sioux Falls, whose company has about $400,000 in contracts; Tom Adam of Pierre, a partner in a Pierre law firm with a $350,000 in contract; and Sioux Falls lawyer Doug Hajek, a member of the Davenport, Evans, Hurwitz & Smith firm, which holds a $700,000 state contract.
Knudson is with Davenport, Evans, too. But he says the corporate structure is designed so that he doesn’t benefit financially from the state contracts.
Maybe so, Hauffe said, but the whole mix of money, personal connections and no-bid contracts is more proof that the public needs more details on how where the money starts, how it flows, and where it ends up.
Now we are here, 4 years later, the same corruption, secrecy, back door deals and same old characters involved. Here’s the deal folks, Janklow is dead, we don’t need to be scared of the man anymore (like we should have when he was alive), one of his appointees is dead (Benda), it’s time to blow the lid off of the SD GOP and their destruction of this state for their financial gain.
July 2nd, 2013 — Cartoon, Democrats, SD
September 21st, 2012 — Republicans, SD
You might end up voting for the other guy . . .
I had to laugh, then cry at the hypocrisy of Mr. Ten Haken, Social Media expert(?) and Click Rain president (Web and media services for countless GOP candidates and PACs);
Ten Haken said he is no stranger to a good political debate on his Facebook and Twitter, but airing out your political feelings online can be a social media ‘don’t’ because it can come back to haunt you. Rants and fights online can not only wreck personal relationships, but even put your job in jeopardy.
Why? I have never understood this line of crap. Last I checked I live in a Democracy and am protected by the 1st Amendment. My boss may have the right to ‘suggest‘ how I should register to vote, and who to vote for, but it is none of his/hers business my political affiliation. In fact, I would be a bit insulted that my boss would even make it an issue, and it actually borders on discrimination. I have never been fired for my political views, and have actually been defended by past and current managers for my stances. One even said to me, “I appreciate it that you stick up for what you believe in, even though I may not agree with you.”
Sorry Paul, but being involved and vocal about the process is EXACTLY what the public needs to start doing, especially new registered voters.
“It’s just safe to kind of walk the middle of the road and if you’re going to post about politics. There’s nothing wrong with engaging in politics, but just not in such a polarizing way,” Ten Haken said.
Mr. Ten Haken, Mr. Middle-of-the-Road himself. LOL! This is the same guy who helps out people like Gant and the Rushmore PAC. He even assisted Pat Powers to play ‘musical servers‘ with his website(s) domains. Mr. Ten Haken is no stranger to being ‘POLARIZING’ he just hopes you are not, because you might find out about him . . . birds of a feather.
December 4th, 2011 — Republicans, SD
I read about this on a couple of blogs last week, but Ellis summed up the hilarity of this site.
Are you a Republican if you enjoy gunning down coyotes from your snowmobile? Does that make you a soldier of the GOP?
Or are you a Republican if you believe that midwives should be licensed to administer births? Or how about if you think employers should be thrown in the hoosegow for hiring “illegal aliens?” Does that make you a Republican?
I am an indy, and lean left, but trust me, the Dems have done things that are just as silly. But trying to claim you have nothing to do with it when the IP is registered to you is a bit of a stretch;
Turns out the site was being hosted by a server linked to Rep. Stace Nelson, the first-term Republican and retired Marine who hasn’t been afraid to challenge his party’s leadership.
Nelson told me he did host the site, but he says he didn’t have a role in creating the content or making the rankings.
Sure. Stace. And Santa Claus is real.
November 30th, 2011 — SD, Secretary of State, South Dakotans
I expected controversy from the dynamic duo Gant and Powers in the SOS office to happen a lot sooner then this (of course we certainly don’t know what they have done so far);
Secretary of State Jason Gant attempted Tuesday to bypass the state board of elections — which has rule-making authority under state law — in approving new forms and introducing legislation.
And while an apology may be more appropriate we get this statement;
During his eight-year term, former Secretary of State Chris Nelson brought forth his proposed legislation to the board for its approval. But, he said, the secretary of state has final authority regarding whether to take it to the Legislature.
“I utilized the expertise of the board, in large part, to improve legislation that I was thinking about putting forth to the Legislature,” Nelson said.
Viken, who has been on the board since 1999, reminded Gant how legislative issues were handled by previous people in the office.
“I don’t care about the past,” Gant said.
Well you best start caring. You are the SOS of state, not chief rule maker.
May 15th, 2011 — gambling, SD, South Dakotans, Video lottery
Well isn’t this funny. All those pious right wingers and South Dakota leads in being a state that profits from sin. Can they say hypocrites???
From 24/7 Wall St.: As state budgets strain under huge debt loads, they are counting increasingly on “sin taxes”, one of the few reliable sources of revenue in these uncertain economic times.
States have profited from the public’s voracious appetite for easy money (gambling), nicotine (smoking) and booze (alcohol) for years. Some are more successful at it than others. A few states generate less than 1% of their revenue from preying on their residents’ vices while sin accounts for between 5% and nearly 13% of the budgets of others. Some of the difference can be chalked up to varying rates of addiction, but aggressive tax policy also plays a part. Pennsylvania makes the greatest percent of its revenue from gaming taxes of any state. It charges a 55% tax on slot machine proceeds. Conversely, Las Vegas collects only 8%.
5. South Dakota
Most Profitable Sin: Lottery ($117 Million)
Revenue From Sin: $212 Million (11th Lowest)
Total State Revenue: $3.8 Billion (The Lowest)
Percent Total Revenue From Sin: 5.63%
The National Association of State Budget Officers estimates that South Dakota collected less revenue than any state last year. That is why the state’s $212 million collected from “sin” is the fifth biggest percentage of government income in the country. The state collects the 19th most in gaming taxes in the U.S., although this is primarily because 29 states do not collect taxes on their casinos at all. The state’s biggest source of sin-based income is the South Dakota Lottery, which generated roughly $117 million in revenue last year. The state’s cigarette tax is $1.53 per pack, roughly triple that of North Dakota. The state’s alcohol taxes are also higher than most, at 27 cents per gallon of beer. According to the South Dakota newspaper The Capitol Journal, the state’s revenues from video lotteries actually dropped as much as 15% last year, possibly because of a smoking ban in casinos and bars which was enacted in November.
April 25th, 2011 — SD, Sioux Falls, US Constitution
You can listen as the SD Supreme Court weighed in on this case .
So why has there been no media about the case? Because we know the SF MSM are tools, and the city has turned that tool away from the case.
This is what I know so far;
• The City filed a 7 page brief citing 4 obscure cases.
• Daily’s attorney submitted a 38 page brief citing 35 state court cases, 13 US Supreme Court Cases, 2 other cases, 6 constitutional provisions, 8 SD statutes, and 3 city ordinances.
I’m no lawyer, but I think we know how this will turn out. Then maybe the media will pull their heads out and consider this a REAL story.
March 8th, 2011 — SD, State Funding, State Legislature
Oh, crap! Is it already the end of the legislative session! Better prepare the budget;
By the end of the day on Friday, the South Dakota Legislature will approve a budget containing significant spending cuts — but the shape and size of those cuts is far from determined.
This is what I scratch my head about every year. Before the legislative session starts everyone starts crying about how broke we are (which we are) so you would think the very short session would be devoted to solving our budget issues. Nope. Abortion. Guns and more guns.
But it seems a dirty little secret has been exposed;
Lawmakers are also discussing the possibility of getting rid of some of the state’s $500 million in tax exemptions. Unlike a tax rate increase, Gov. Dennis Daugaard has said he is open to eliminating tax exemptions. Two bills dealing with tax exemptions have passed both houses; several others have been killed. Any legislator could introduce a budget amendment eliminating more sales tax exemptions.
$500 million! WTF! While I am an ardent supporter of some exemptions, it seems we could probably find a couple of them that should be eliminated?
But that would be too easy, why not something more difficult and painful;
A much-discussed alternative, HB1141, would set a special election this November for initiated measures with the intent of allowing for a popular vote on a tax increase.
BAHAHAHAHA! This wouldn’t pass in a million years, and any legislator who thinks it would should get their freaking head examined. We give tax breaks and refunds to Canadian corporations to dig holes in our state then turn around and expect South Dakotans to pay more in taxes on a loaf of bread? Get real.
Eliminate exemptions and tax advertising. Done deal.
January 18th, 2011 — School Funding, SD, SD Attorney General
Okay, I know this episode of Inside Stormland TV is over a week old, but I have been doing some catching up. This is actually a pretty good show, compared to Jon Wilson’s BJ episode of Rounds. Both sides of the school funding case gave great arguments, but I would have to agree with Scott that school funding is a SD constitutional obligation, and Scott let’s AG Jackboots have it over it. He uses the analogy of the state suing over ‘Obamacare’. Jackboots hangs his head so low in his lap, you thought at one point he was going to fall out of his chair.
Worth the watch.
December 15th, 2010 — Ethics, SD, SD Attorney General
I saw this as a political football from the beginning. Funny how no one found a (Extreme Right Wing Conservative) Republican Attorney General, who was running for office, was playing politics with the food for votes fiasco;
“I think this was a clearly partisan charge from the beginning. The Republicans know you can make a charge five or six weeks before election day and the investigation is going to take several months. They can make a charge, make it seem like fact regardless of the fact that no laws were broken. They pretend that it was and use that allegation to scare voters.”
Nesselhuf said there is history of these kinds of “bogus charges,” and it probably will be seen again in elections.
While I don’t agree with the food exchange, I doubt a donut, a hot dog or a bowl of chili is going to convince people to vote for a certain candidate. In fact that assumption is freaking absurd and as Michael Jackson would say, “Ignorant.”
Lucas Lentsch, executive director of the state Republican Party, said he expects the Legislature to weigh in when next year’s session begins.
“Vote-buying or food-for-votes will more than likely be a policy discussion of the 2011 South Dakota state Legislature,” Lentsch said Tuesday. “I fully anticipated that there would be an investigation of some sort, the attorney general and U.S. attorney have rendered their decisions, I just expect it to continue to evolve and be a policy discussion.”
It seems Lucas just can’t let it go. While I agree there should be some legislative intervention, Lucas seems to think there should be an investigation. I guess it wasn’t good enough that his party beat the living daylights out of the Dems, he seems hellbent on punishing them even more. Bring it on, your party was participating in the practice also, and that is why the charges were probably dropped.
“My goal is to make sure that the integrity of our elections is not jeopardized by any activities of different groups or individuals for that matter,” Gant said. “We’re going to look at the language, we’re going to look at reports from the attorney general and the U.S. attorney and I want to do everything I can to provide the legislature with information on how we can best ensure that we have fair and legal elections.”
This coming from a guy who created a fake issue during the election about the Feds taking over state elections. This was clearly about sticking it to the Dems right before an election. Maybe there should be laws enacted that prevent political parties from creating controversies about the opposite party right before an election. I’m sure that would make Kermit Staggers very happy.