Sunday Morning Coffee is news, opinion, politics, religion, gossip and a little business. It's a chance for you and I to hang out and visit about the things that are impacting our lives...the big stuff and, perhaps, the trivial. It's all part of the discussion and if you're moved to respond...you can leave a comment here, connect on Twitter @MichaelLibbbie or visit my Personal Facebook Page..have at it. Grab a cup...and let's go:
It's Not A Crime...
Last week the Des Moines Register laid off 13 people, most coming from their newsroom. In Indianapolis the cuts at The Star were deeper with 62 job losses...again many in the newsroom. It's all part of the reduction of 700 jobs Gannett CEO Craig Debow initiated last year. The year his salary nearly doubled to $4.7 million and the year he was "rewarded" with a $1.7 million bonus for "cost cutting". It's not a crime to layoff good people who come to work and do their job, buy houses, groceries, send their kids to school. It's not a crime to sacrifice hundreds of people to "save" a dying industry for the stockholders. But...maybe it should be a crime to be rewarded for destroying lives and collecting the "blood money". If you are interested, here is a spreadsheet listing the cities and estimated number of job cuts by Gannett. It is from our new friends at Gannett Blog.
Iowa - Schizophrenic GOP
Iowa is an interesting political state. We have one of the most progressive US Senators in Tom Harkin and one of the most conservative in Charles Grassley. And we deal with it pretty well. However, the Des Moines Register Iowa Poll, released last night at 10:00PM to breathless journalists and campaign workers shows just how completely fractured the Iowa Republican Party is. The "normal" (shall we call them "Bob Ray Republicans?) who urged Governor "For Life"Terry Branstad to come out of retirement to challenge Bob "Cause It's In The Bible"Vander Plaats in 2010...because they were scared of him and knew that if he ran, Governor Chet "The Big Lug" Culver would trounce him...(how long can this sentence be?) have put their hopes in Mitt " Think Healthcare" Romney. He leads the poll with 23%. While Minnesota Congresswoman Michele "Cause It's In The Bible II" Bachmann (who I think is a flat out nut-job...but hot) comes in a very close second with 22% of likely Republicans favoring her. Which, when you think of it, isn't much of a surprise given that 48% of likely GOP Caucus Attendees think President Obama is really from Kenya. It's a good time...in Iowa. Here is the story from our friends, who are left, at The Des Moines Register.
A quick side note: The Des Moines Register Iowa Poll isn't actually done by the Des Moines Register. The newspaper, "That Just Canned 13 Good People" commissions J. Ann Selzer's group to conduct it for them and the Register reports the findings. By the way...Selzer & Company has had a remarkable string of spot on calls over the years. How they do...what they do...works.
My Friend Roxi Copland
Shall we move on to something more fun? Over the past several years I've developed a close friendship with the very talented Roxi Copland. Roxi is one of those singer/songwriters that grabs you with her ability to surprise. When I first saw her perform I was stunned. "What, all that voice comes out of that little girl?" And, the passion, when she sings or plays back-up is...inspiring. Anyway...we met for coffee on Friday because I wanted to hear more about what she's been doing and why the hell she is leaving us to move to Canada. Canada...Vancouver no less. They have hockey...and EVERYTHING! The story is: Her equally surprising and very bright husband got a gig as a visiting professor so...they are packing up. Roxi will be only 4 hours from her father who lives in Seattle... A win-win. BUT...and this is very cool...Roxi will be headlining a special show with Max Wellman (Think of a 20 year old Michael Buble) who is simply out of this world...at Des Moines' Temple for Performing Arts. The five night show (with an 8 piece band) opens on July 22 and it will be a do not miss. For tickets and a sample of some amazingly talented people it's Roxi Copland or head over to Max Wellman. WHOOT!!
My friend Chubby Checker was spotted last week at a hospital in Ohio. I was told he was visiting...but just to check I sent him a text message. He's fine but said a long-time friend wasn't doing well. He really is one of the nicest guys on the planet...all the best Chubb! Coming back to Iowa soon??? (photo - Chubby & Bride Rina)
Comes back to work tomorrow to finish, what has become, a very long session. I was with my friend Sharon Steckman (far right in Mason City with friends) this weekend talking about budgets, crazy people and politics. Not all in that order... She has taken to this world of public service as a natural. A former school teacher, Sharon has the ability to stay in touch with her constituents through personal contact and Facebook. By the way...she doesn't sling all sorts of political arrows, in other words...she unlike many in the GOP...doesn't "make stuff up" (Think Kenya) she just works hard and stays focused. Mason City...you are fortunate to have her.
Meanwhile my BFF State Representative Chris Hagenow goes back to work tomorrow...too. He represents me and all 4,400 of us in The Village of Windsor Heights. Anyway, I think he goes back to work tomorrow. Week 9 and still I've not received his newsletter. I bet I did something wrong...I just know he's been busy sharing his accomplishments with the voters. Gotta do more digging.
This will be...fun. On the Fourth of July one of my favorite cover bands will be playing at the festivities here in The Village of Windsor Heights. Faculty Lounge is am 8 piece band made up of teachers who...rock. Great vocals, neat stage presence and lots of fun. It's a Monday Night...Party in The Village. Here's the details. Of the day and evening... (photo Aaron Smith - Des Moines Register)
Meanwhile the Des Moines Symphony with Maestro Joseph Giunta will again perform Yankie Doodle Pops this FRIDAY night at the Capital. We've not missed a performance in years...it's just the best music and fireworks in the state. And...it's free. Thousands will be there...you?
Georgie and Jamie Lee Curtis (aka Susan Jacobson) are back today from a week in Anna Marie Island in Florida. The trip sounds like it was amazing...looking forward to some additional photos and the stories. And...receiving another "project list". I know one must be in the works...she's had a week to think stuff up. Thanks to friends they stayed in a little bunglow a block from the beach. While we, here in Des Moines had clouds and rain. Color me "green with envy".
I've got to put a lid on this and go install a garage door opener. Something I've NEVER done. (Life is such an adventure!) The original openers gave up the ghost last fall..they've got to have been 25 years old? I called to see if they could be repaired and the folks...laughed. Then they said a new install would be $350...each. So...must gather tools. Ya know, when you come to think about it...a garage door opener... How pampered we are. It's now standard equipment...like power windows on a car. We are so...fortunate.
Have a great Sunday...and thanks for reading. - Michael