Monthly Archives: June, 2016

The Tennessean Finally Jumps The Shark.

jump the shark

Stop the presses!  Breaking News from the Tennessean! 

Extra! Extra! Read all about it!

ExclusiveTennessean report reveals someone in Durham campaign reported a contribution to Donald Trump, but didn’t fill out the form correctly!

It finally happened.  The Tennessean dropped all pretense of being a legitimate, balanced news source and did the Full Monty by exposing themselves for the pitiful hacks they really are.

Those unfortunate enough to visit the online Tennessean earlier today were treated to a Breaking News! banner headline that, to put it mildly, was actually a reality show attempt to generate news where there was none.

In this instance the Tennessee breathlessly reported that political punch-line Jeremy Durham had bought about $160 worth of Trump for President hats in response to a constituent request and duly reported the purchase as a contribution to the Trump for President campaign.  In the process, someone at the Durham campaign listed Durham as the city manager for Fairview (the request was made by the wife of the city manager of Fairview, so you can see how easy it was for a clerical error to be made). That’s it. That’s the whole damn story.  We know what you’re thinking: GASP!  The HORROR! Oh, the Humanity!!! 

Breaking News  from the Tennessean! 

Durham reports campaign contribution.  Fails to note that he is not the Ambassador to France.  Harwell and Slatery launch new investigation. 

Channel 4 Action Jackson News Reporter Alanna Autler will have more on this important development on the “Alanna Autler’s Channel 4 Action Jackson Special Report” (tonight at 10:00pm, or whenever Boucher gets home to give her the script.)

But the complete (and now official) idiots at the Tennessean didn’t stop there. Oh, no-o-o-o.  They went on to demonstrate their Pavlovian response to the very mention of Durham’s name by regurgitating for the 437th time the various transgressions ascribed to Durham.  (Still waiting on someone – anyone – to file, you know, actual legal charges against Durham.  But we digress).

Then they tripled down on their manufactured news story by gratuitously mentioning that the city of Fairview was under investigation on a matter that has absolutely nothing to do with Durham.  Cut and paste much, fellas?  They teach you that in J-School?

Breaking News from the Tennessean! 

The Tennessean has learned (by apparently reading the Drudge Report) that Adolph Hitler had only one testicle.  Rep. Jeremy Durham, the subject of an AG investigation over accusations of sexual harassment, was unavailable for comment and offered no explanation why he apparently has twice as many testicles as Hitler, but he immediately resigned his volunteer position as parking lot attendant at the Fairview July 4th picnic.  Speaker Harwell said he should also be expelled from the fireworks display as well.

As a result of the Tennessean’s Pulitzer Prize-level reporting, the AG has issued subpoenas and seized the personal phone records of Durham and half the voters of Williamson County in his effort to investigate the “Durham Doodads Scandal” as heroically reported by the Tennessean.

More on “Cajones-gate” in Frank Daniels The Third’s column this Sunday.

MEANWHILE, Back at Election HQs…..

As the Tennessean was stopping the presses while beating the press operators to work faster, they managed to completely ignore a real-life, actual ethical and likely illegal activity taking place right under their News Hound noses. Two liberal Democrat lobbyists were hosting political meetings for Rep. Charles Sargent in their homes, while failing to report that doing so violates the in-kind contributions rule that prevents sleazebal…uh…lobbyists from doing that sort of thing.

If only Sargent had done something really newsworthy — like buying a Donald Trump poster while failing to report that he, Sargent, was not the Queen of England.  Now that would have been some bitchin’ news, dude!

Some advice to the children at the Tennessean:  Next time you think you have something important to report – please don’t.

We’re running out of sharks.

Free Willy.

Free Willy meme









While the district he wants to represent was voting overwhelmingly for Trump, where was legislative challenger William Lockhart?

Hiding out with his establishment friends.

Lockhart, who has lived in the 47th district for less than a year and a half, sure found a curious way to try and build a political base in his new home.  While the overwhelming majority of the people in the district were voting for Trump, Lockhart has pointedly refused to publicly endorse Trump as the party’s nominee.

Yep, a real profile in courage.  But let’s cut William a little slack.  Maybe he was forced to keep his mouth shut, since his financial backers were actively supporting more establishment-type candidates such as Bush and Rubio.

Lockhart edit 3Maybe William was browbeat into silence because some of his biggest backers were those same establishment financiers running the effort to defeat Republican conservatives in the last primary.  One of William’s biggest backers was an officer for the notorious Advance TN PAC – which tried to defeat conservatives so that the legislature attempt try and pass Obamacare expansion, Common Core and a gas tax.  Hardly a great platform to run on, William.

Then came news that Lockhart was up to his eyeballs in the continuing scandal plaguing the state party where the wife of the political director was being paid to work for Lockhart in direct violation of party rules and by-laws.  After public shaming, Lockhart was forced to fire the wife, but she says she quit.


Rocky Top says people should show some sympathy to young William.  We should free William from his onerous debt to the establishment crony capitalist types.

Free William from his reliance on the party hacks that got us into the same kind of mess we see in Washington.

Free William so that he can find his own voice instead of parroting the politics of his establishment donors.

Free Willy.



Humphrey Gets It Really Wrong.

Normally, the crew here at Rocky Top have a general admiration of the Dean of the Capitol press corps, Tom Humphrey.  Other than his occasional knee-jerk reflex to defend the administration, especially when it leans left, Humphrey is fairly straightforward.  He doesn’t always get the story right (who does in the MSM?) but he is accessible and generally fair-minded.

But in his Sunday column yesterday, where he highlighted three lawmakers who have recently made the news, Humphrey made an assertion that was wrong.  Very wrong.

This from the Dean:

Durham…also has a corps of ardent defenders. Last week, for example, Rep. Billy Spivey, R-Lewisburg, wrote a letter to the chairman of the legislative committee overseeing the investigation to call for an end to an effort that “reeks of a political witch hunt.”

Anyone who can make it from the cafeteria to the outdoor smoking lounge at LP knows that to call Rep. Billy Spivey a defender of Durham is factually, substantively and demonstrably untrue.  In fact, Spivey has been one of Durham’s most vociferous critics for both his professional and personal conduct, and his criticism of Durham long-preceded the current sexual harrasment accusations.   Anyone who has asked Spivey his view of the Durham matter (which Humphrey obviously did not), know this is a fact.  Spivey’s distaste for Durham is why Speaker Harwell put Spivey on the Ad Hoc committee, figuring he would be a reliable executioner of Durham when the time came.  And that is why Spivey’s call to dissolve the Ad Hoc committee is significant.

Spivey’s use of the term “witch hunt” was not referring to nor was it even remotely a defense of Durham.  Spivey was simply giving voice to discussions that have been taking place between every member of the House GOP the last few weeks.  They are profoundly concerned Harwell has made a political and legal mess of the Durham issue that threatens her leadership.  But even more concerning to the legislators (and the RTP crew have talked more than a few) is that the AG investigation has turned into an Inquisition that appears more concerned about digging up personal information on other legislators who are unrelated to the Durham case than it does about Durham himself.

Such an investigation can and will result in political blackmail and intimidation if allowed to continue unchecked. That is the nature of politics and political power.  And that is why Spivey took the bold step to blow the whistle on the investigation.

Tom Humphrey is not frequently wrong, but he needs to pen a correction regarding Spivey.  And he and other journalists need to investigate the investigators, employing the same enthusiasm with which they have gone after Durham.

Setting Fire to a Corrupt Investigation

AG Investigation a ‘Witch Hunt,’ Should End Immediately

SpiveyRep. Billy Spivey has thrown down the gauntlet.

In a sharply worded letter sent to the Durham Ad Hoc Committee, of which he s a member, Spivey demanded the Committee cease operations because the investigation they authorized to look into the Durham affairs has degenerated into a political witch hunt.

Breitbart News reported earlier today on the Spivey letter to Ad Hoc Committee chair Rep. Steve McDaniel, which pulled no punches.  Spivey demanded to know why members of the committee learned of important investigative actions by reading about them in the media.  He also called out AG Slatery by demanding to know why people who have been interviewed by his investigation are being asked numerous questions by investigators about the private lives of other legislators, many of which could be identified as political opponents of Speaker Beth Harwell.

As RTP has been warning for weeks, the cesspit of an investigation that was created and promoted by Speaker Harwell has now reach maximum stench.  Spivey has now called their bluff.

Harwell is about to be asked some very, very pointed questions by members of her caucus.  If she does not answer them, she will be at real risk of losing her speakership.  There are rumors that at least two, possible three, people are contemplating a challenge to her following the election.

As for her gubernatorial ambitions, the glaring lack of leadership on her part in this and other matters means that she can pretty much kiss those dreams goodbye.

Spivey also pointed out a glaring fact that everyone in leadership, the AG’s office and the news media seem desperate to ignore:  since the legislature has adjourned for the year, there is nothing they can do to accomplishment their original mission — to decide if Durham should be expelled.  The House can only expel Durham if it is in session, which it is not, leaving many legislators to ask the question as to why the hell this idiotic investigation continues? Why issue a report if the report cannot be actd upon?  Good damn questions.

RTP agrees with Spivey:  Shut down this abomination and let the voters decide what to do with Durham.

While they are at it, RTP respectfully suggests they take their “little black book of political blackmail” report to be generated by the investigation and put it where it will never see the light of day.

In other words, “Stick it where the sun don’t shine, Herbert.”

"Mr. Slatery, Sen. McCarthy is holding on line 3..."

“Mr. Slatery, Sen. McCarthy is holding for you on line three”


French Kissed


Just when we thought we were going to have the opportunity to elect the first President of the United States from Columbia (home of Mule Days!) since James Knox Polk, we were disappointed to find out the candidate who no one had ever heard of announced he was not going to run.

National Review writer David French being half-way seriously mentioned as a candidate for POTUS was only the latest weird event in an already weird election. The lube mechanic at John Roberts Nissan in Manchester probably has a bigger political base than David French, but that did not stop the talking heads of the national media from opining what French’s candidacy might mean to the race (Short answer: it would mean absolutely nothing).

But the lessons to be learned from such things as the departure of French before he even entered the race was lost on our “Republican” governor. Haslam previously quietly backed Jeb Bush, who pulled out before he even made it to Tennessee.  Then he publicly backed Marco Rubio, who promptly lost 94 out of Tennessee’s 95 counties.

So now, Bill Haslam pontificates that Trump’s “attacks on Republican governors are not helpful.” He also threatened he is not going to endorse Trump until he meets with him at the Republican Convention.  He further postulates:

“From a state’s perspective there’s a lot of things that we’d like to share with a candidate from our party about what’s important in terms of state and federal relationships.”

Gee, Bill, you seem to laboring under the illusion that Donald Trump gives a rat’s ass what you think.

If we were Trump, we would view Haslam’s non-endorsement as a good thing – especially considering Haslam’s track record of political failures:

  • Common Core – Haslam demanded it be the education policy of the state. The Legislature cancelled it.
  • Repeal of the Hall Income Tax – Haslam campaigned against repeal. The Legislature passed it overwhelming. Haslam threatened to veto, but then wimped out.
  • InsureTN/Obamacare expansion — Haslam demanded it. Legislature said “Forget it.”
  • Syrian Refugee Resettlement Lawsuit – Haslam said Obama was doing a “good job” of dumping “refugees” into the Volunteer state. Legislature said: “File the lawsuit against the Feds or we will.”

The list goes on and on and on.

If Trump wants to get elected president, the last thing he needs is Bill Haslam’s endorsement.


Burn, Baby, Burn!

Andy Holt calls out the municipalities who are raking in the dough from the “speed camera shakedown.”

KNS editorial whines without successfully refuting a single point made by Holt.

Andy HoltWhen the Resistance (aka, Donald Trump, aka anti-establishment, aka the peasant revolt) swings into full gear, we will look back on Rep. Andy Holt’s ticket-burning video (500,000 YouTube views and counting) and mark it as a place where the great unwashed struck back at the overbearing, politically correct, bureaucrats who spend most of the 2 hours they work at their jobs every day trying to squeeze more blood out of the rock they call “the taxpayers.”

But the revolt didn’t stop the Knoxville News Sentinel, at the behest of the local police chief, from immediately rising up to attack Holt for – well – telling the God’s truth.

They also claim Knoxville made $309,000 off the cameras last year while the camera companies racked up $1 million. The differences in those two numbers should tell you everything you need to know about the nature and motivation for this taxpayer shakedown. Just have some outfit from Texas set up the cameras, then the bureaucrats just sit back without doing a damn thing (something they are very good at) and watch the money from the suckers, er, taxpayers roll in. And if the traffic bureaucrats were only concerned about “safety” and the best interests of the public, then why didn’t they turn over the county’s share to something worthwhile, like a traffic victims fund or — god forbid — a taxpayer rebate. No, instead these governmental parasites padded their office budget, the little people be damned.

Thank you, Andy Holt. We can’t wait to see who you burn next.



Pissed to the Roots

The original strategy of the HQ conflict-of-interest cabal appeared to be the tried-and-true method of just “riding out” the Taylor Ferrell controversy, hoping everything would calm down eventually and they could get back to lining their own pockets (or that of their wives) while targeting GOP conservative legislators. The Memorial Day weekend was the rumored target for “weathering the storm,” after which everything would return to normal.

Yeah, well, that ain’t gonna happen.

Wilson, Robertson, Obion and Maury county GOP committees have all passed resolutions demanding the firing of the state GOP staff involved. RTP is aware of at least four more county organizations considering the same action. Instead of running the “Red to the Roots” program, the state GOP staff now has to worry about the effort underway at the local level to have their sorry butts fired.

Here’s an update:

  • A number of SEC members are planning a meeting near Nashville with several of the original 27 legislators who signed the letter that exposed the disgraceful conduct of the state GOP staff and some officers. RTP’s spies, er, tipsters have not determined the exact date and location or the participants, but we’ll let you know. Could be worth the price of the popcorn to see that exchange.

christi-crossHer astonishingly lame defense was that she was campaigning for Kelsey “outside of her [SEC] district.” Even if true, it grossly violates the spirit of the by-laws. She then said because she was campaigning for a primary candidate in a federal race, that somehow made violating the by-laws okay. Uh, nope. The state by-laws do not make exceptions for federal races. In addition, Ms. Cross fails to mention she is not just any old SEC member, oh no – she is the Secretary of the state GOP and as a state officer is a representative of the GOP for the whole state. Kinda hard to use the ol’ “not in my district” defense when your district actually comprises the entire state.

Now maybe if Ms. Cross would like to campaign for Kelsey in, say, Utah or Kentucky, her actions might be forgiven. Absent that, for the love of all that is holy please just shut up Christi, before you dig your hole any deeper.

  • Word is quickly spreading that many of the traditional major donors to the state GOP’s annual Statesmen’s Dinner took a walk last month, reportedly in disgust of the slimy HQ vendor practices that were exposed by RTP and others. Guess they got tired of seeing their donations wind up in the pockets of relatives of party leaders as well as being spent to defeat conservative Republican legislators.

Payback’s a bitch, ain’t it Brent?