Planksy Brings Sharklers, Sparklers

planksyportraitjuly4

Arrrrr! So what does a five-letter Arrrrr mean? It means it’s none other than Planksy, yer pirate turkey sailing in with me fowly friends to deliver the sharklers and sparklers this Fourthy holiday. Arrr! Me and me birds are coming up the Oklahoma river, and then making a turn up the Bricktown Canal. Ahoy, methinks I spy a bar or five. Stop, oarsbirds!

So you know the drift. If yer a smarmy landlubber, yer get me sharklers and a little swimmy time with the toothie fishies after yer walk the plank. If yer possess the bold, courageous soul of a pirate turkey, yer get me sparklers, which come with a trip on board me vessel and the sweet partaking of rum from me special barrel, Planksy Reserve 46. Let the horn piping and dancing commence. Arrr!

Sharklers. Me first sharklers of the day go to nearly each and every Republican legislator in the state, rascally landlubbers, who cut funding to higher education by nearly 16 percent and continue to cut funding for K-12 education. Talk about yer draining of the brain. Avast, me fellow pirate turkeys, these bilge rats stink up the boat, if yer get me drift, a leaky one at that. Voters should move smartly now in November.

Sparklers. Me first sparklers of the day go to any state legislator that voted against the education cuts and spoke out against them. It’s a brave move in a place filled with rapscallions with broken compasses and ruffled feathers and ugly gobblers. Come aboard! Drink it up! Aye, dance, dance, dance! Fiddle player, turn it up.

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Little Backfire On Playing Politics

(Teachers, I don’t know if you can trust anything posted on the Oklahoma Parents and Educators for Public Education page at this point. People possess vested personal interests. Do your own research. Don’t rely on a Facebook page. Don’t take my word for it, either.—Kurt Hochenauer)

Angela Clark Little holding elect Adam Pugh sign

What if you support a supposed weaker or maybe a little better candidate on the other side in a primary election, and then your support ends up electing that person to office instead of the candidate definitely on the side of an organization you represent?

That’s what could happen in the District 41 State Senate race in Edmond to replace Clark Jolley, the term-limited, anti-education, right-wing extremist. The organization Oklahoma Parents and Educators for Public Education continues its support for Republican Adam Pugh over Republican Paul Blair, but a very REAL teacher, Kevin McDonald, a member of the Democratic Party, waits in the wings for the general election. He needs support now.

When will the organization strongly support McDonald instead of a candidate, who announces boldly on his web site: “Adam Pugh: A Conservative Patriot.”? Here’s more from the site: “I have flown missions across the globe and I understand that freedom is worth fighting for, on the battlefield and in the halls of our Capitol.” (Oh yeah, he notes that he has been a substitute teacher.) The Fight. The Battlefield. The Freedom. That’s what he seems to be all about. He’s pandering to the right-wing voter base.

The idea of supporting the supposedly weaker or maybe a little better candidate on the opposing side in a primary election is nothing new nor is voting for the lesser of the two evils. The problem becomes that it can confuse voters when an organization gives unabashed support for a primary candidate even though it supposedly, maybe or not, is going to support another candidate in the general election. It can become dishonest, and, yes, I get that politics is basically a totally dishonest endeavor with a few notable exceptions.

I don’t want Paul Blair to win the seat either. Blair could become the state’s new Sally Kern, only even more powerful, dangerous and radical. He’s the pastor of the Fairview Baptist Church in Edmond. He’s also a former NFL player. He also actively opposes and fights against same-sex marriage and reproductive rights for women.

But would the conservative patriot Adam Pugh be much better? Maybe.

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What Backlash? GOP Congressional Incumbents Roll To Victory

The most depressing news for progressives about Tuesday’s primary election results is that all the incumbents of Oklahoma’s archconservative Congressional delegation won their races in what media outlets described as “blowouts.”

The numbers support that description. U.S. Rep. Jim Bridenstine won with 80 percent, U.S. Rep. Markwayne Mullin won with 63 percent, U.S. Rep. Frank Lucas won with 77 percent, U.S. Rep. Tom Cole won with 71 percent and U.S. Rep. Steve Russell won with 80 percent. (I’ve rounded the numbers.)

What this means is that there’s probably little to no realignment or major dissatisfaction happening among the Republican electorate here, and hope for progressive victories, especially at the Congressional level, remain slim. This could also be a sign that Republicans will continue to rule Oklahoma with large majorities in the House and Senate at the state Capitol.

I wrote “could” because it seemed like a mixed night for the so-called “teacher caucus,” the group of candidates with educational experience who ran focused pro-education campaigns. Oklahoma Watch reported that there are “at least 40” such candidates and . . . “only 20 of those 40 candidates, almost all of whom were political newcomers, will continue this political season.” Note the use of the word “only” here. But as Oklahoma Watch also noted, some 23 candidates with educational experience didn’t face an opponent in the primary so there’s still a sizable number of candidates running under the common cause of improving funding for education.

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