Thursday, September 28, 2006

Good morning:

Internet is down at the office this morning, so I'm working from home and will have to get you today's holidays later.

I'm also feeling significantly better, thanks.

Six things to read today:

Fifth District Independent candidate Roy Nielsen took the first step towards credibility today: Yepsen said he's not crazy. Which may mean he really IS crazy, but nonetheless, it's the best press he's received (or probably will receive) in the race. He probably projects to about 20-25% of the vote, about the same percentage Joyce Schulte is going to get.

As an aside, the Register published a picture, contact information and website for Roy Nielsen, but failed to do so for any of his three opponents. That's disappointingly bad journalism.

Lonny Bartels of Urbandale helps prove my point that Lamberti, Boswell, Nussle and Culver are decreasing turnout with negative ads:

Based on all this negative campaigning, and based on Chet Culver's and Jim Nussle's own opinions of each other, neither candidate is capable of serving Iowa. Therefore, I will vote for neither.

I think a lot of people are arriving or will arrive at the same decision. Most probably won't individually alert the Register.

When hype can backfire: Iowa Democrats lead by over 50,000 in the race to get the most absentee ballots in place before November 7. I worried about this in 2004, and I'm worried about it again now. In 2004, Democrats had a huge lead in absentee ballots, they publicized it, and a small portion of poll voters may have decided the race was already decided and they didn't need to vote anymore. Then we lost Iowa by a small portion of voters. Every race is different, but if Nussle wins by a small margin, I may point back to this day.

You can't spell pandemic without panic.

I'd like to shoot Johnny Knoxville in the balls too. I could care less if he's wearing a Kum & Go t-shirt while I do it. Furthermore, who cares? If Zach Braff had worn a "Casey's General Store" t-shirt in The Last Kiss, would it make the Register?

I saw The Last Kiss over the weekend. You should too.

The Iowa Renewable Fuels Association says the use of E85 is climbing, with Iowans purchasing 570,961 gallons of it during the second quarter of 2006. Two thoughts:

1) I wish they would separate that figure out, so I'd know how many of those gallons went into state vehicles and how many were purchased by individual consumers. I think that would tell us much more about the trends involved.

2) Selling more E85 is great, but Iowa is on pace to generate 2.2 billion gallons of ethanol, enough to make almost 2.6 billion gallons of E85, just considering the ethanol refineries currently in place and those in the pipeline. So it would appear we've still got about 2,599,429,039 gallons of E85 to find a home for. The market would have to grow 4554% for that to happen.

My biggest fear with the ethanol obsession right now is that instead of creating the "jobs with a future" the Department of Economic Development would say we're creating, we're actually creating short term jobs riding on a bubble which already has holes in it.


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