Adventures in Research: Tracking down the 19th century Maine Guy who wanted a wife.

Funny story: I used to be a researcher.  Library grad school, until they threw me out of it because of wine, women, and song*; then a decade in general real estate research tracking down the details of recent commercial/multi-tenant residential sales.  And, of course, there were those amusing days demonstrating to anonymous Internet trolls that there’s no such thing as anonymity on the Internet.  Good times, good times.

Anyway, I see this Tweet: Continue reading Adventures in Research: Tracking down the 19th century Maine Guy who wanted a wife.

If your performance art involves playing in traffic while dressed as a tree…

…you probably should find a new way to artistically develop yourself.

Police say they’ve arrested a man dressed as a tree for blocking traffic in Maine.

They say the man didn’t respond to officers when they warned him against obstructing traffic in a busy intersection in downtown Portland.

WCSH-TV posted video of the man being arrested after he blocked traffic again.

Click here for a possibly unique photo of a policeman handcuffing a tree and leading it away.  Although it’s probably happened before. I’ve just never seen it happen before, which kind of counts for ‘unique,’ right?

Maine GOP perhaps naively thinks that things should be quiet this weekend.

I mean, they’re only having a state convention that will finalize their delegate selection.  No biggie. What could possibly complicate matters?

The Maine GOP is going to have some star power at its state convention this weekend. Conservative radio talk show host Howie Carr will be broadcasting live, and Ben Carson will deliver the keynote address.

But organizers hope the excitement ends there; they’re not looking for controversy.

I mean, I could be wrong. But delegate selection is pretty sexy right now. As is getting the people who like you firmly in control of the rules committees…

My RedState post on Saturday’s closed primaries.

I’m linking to this today instead of tomorrow because it’s actually pretty important. Well, maybe not the actual post; but the concept behind it. Very quickly: all four states having primaries and/or caucuses on Saturday are closed ones (only Republicans can vote); and three of the four will not allow independents to vote in the primary/caucus, either. Of those four, Louisiana still looks good for Trump in the polling. Kansas superficially looks good for him, but actually promises a galloping disaster for Trump (26% in a four man pre-debate poll that includes Kasich is bad news, especially since Trump doesn’t get last minute voters). Kentucky hasn’t been polled since before the last debate-but-one; Maine hasn’t been polled this year. In other words: keep watching the skies, because these races may go get funky.

Tweet of the Day, This Maine Mayoral Election Was Interesting edition.

Come, I will conceal nothing from you: I know virtually nil about this race.

…but it does strike me as a bit odd that almost nobody’s commented on the fact that getting a progressive elected still seems to be just as hard in 2015 as it was in 2014. Which is to say, very very hard. I figure that this won’t last forever, more’s the pity – but it still seems to be going on right now.

Oh, Portland MAINE was the city that voted down the $15/hr minimum wage.

You can understand my confusion.

I keep forgetting that there’s a Portland on either side of the country. And that one, ah, has more of a charmingly unique viewpoint than the other. The other one is at least sensible enough not to drive its small businesses out of its jurisdiction, not that that’s a high bar to clear…

Quote of the Day, Tax Money SHOULD Come With Oversight edition.

There’s a certain amount of perhaps bafflement in this sentence.

If you receive government assistance in the state of Maine, Lewiston Mayor Robert Macdonald thinks the public has a right to know about it.

It’s not that the author disagrees with Mayor Macdonald. I’m a little leery of the possible ways that this sort of thing can be botched, myself*. But I get the general impression that the Washington Post takes it as a personal affront that we’re even having this conversation in the first place.  Alas for the paper and the government, the brutal truth of things are that people who pay taxes often want to know where, and to whom, that tax money is being spent. And that it’s actually up to the people who want to use that money to properly reassure the rest of us that that tax money is being spent properly.  There’s far too much evidence these days that it’s not, you see.

Just the way it is.

Moe Lane

*Let us not pretend that good ideas can’t be botched, sufficiently so that it would have been better not to try them in the first place.

Maine-SEN: Gov. Paul LePage considering ’18 run.

Governor Paul LePage is term-limited and his term is up in 2018. So the question is, why wouldn’t he think about a Senate run? “The Republican governor told “The Howie Carr Show” that he was “thinking about it very strongly,” according to the Portland Press Herald. “I think we need leadership in Washington. Yeah, I might do that.””

As to whether he’d win… maybe. Just maybe. Angus King is popular enough, but he’s a freshman and a stealth Democrat in a state that is perhaps more comfortable with electing liberal Republicans. Not that Paul LePage is a liberal; but he also handily outperformed the polls in 2014 despite being in a honest-to-God three-way race. Nominating for Senate a two-term governor who was term-limited out anyway is a perfectly sensible party gambit. Heck, that was more or less Sen. Angus King’s story in the first place.

Gov. Paul LePage (R, Maine) wants to impose property taxes on colleges, nonprofits, other Democratic party affiliates.

I don’t know whether this is demonic, inspired, or both: “A sweeping proposal to cut taxes for Maine families and businesses could upend one of the most widely accepted practices in the country: the property-tax exemption for nonprofit organizations… A recent budget plan by Republican Gov. Paul LePage calling for an overhaul of individual, corporate and sales taxes also would make Maine the first state in the nation to require colleges, hospitals and other large charities to go on the property-tax rolls in their municipalities.” This proposal – which specifically exempts “churches and government-owned entities” – would be the first of its kind in the country, and will probably not pass without a bloody brawl in the state legislature.

Is it a good idea, though? Depends. On the one hand, it’s a tax hike. On the other hand, it’s a tax hike that would be part of a more comprehensive series of tax simplification and reform (which is the way to get conservatives to sign off on a tax hike). On the gripping hand, it’s a tax hike that is aimed squarely at academics and NGOs… which is to say, it’s aimed at people who typically instinctively get upset when a Republican wins an election. There’s no real reason for us to pretend that that last point isn’t a legitimate one for consideration.  Hey, some people like governmental intervention and oversight, right?  … So, here: have some.  Right between the eyes. Continue reading Gov. Paul LePage (R, Maine) wants to impose property taxes on colleges, nonprofits, other Democratic party affiliates.

A tight race in Maine-02? …Very possibly.

Interesting, although why the article went with the registered voter results when the likely voter results were 35/34 (more on that below) is unclear:

A poll commissioned by Republican candidate Bruce Poliquin reveals a tight race in Maine’s 2nd Congressional District.

The survey, conducted by the GOP polling firm Public Opinion Strategies*, showed Poliquin trailing Democrat Emily Cain by four points, 37-33.

…and this is probably the most interesting part: Continue reading A tight race in Maine-02? …Very possibly.