Yesterday, an Ogle Mole sent us a couple of pics from Mary Fallin’s Christmas tree lighting ceremony at the State Capitol. The event took place on the south steps of the crumbling building. Here are the pics:
How sweet…and dangerous. Check out what the south entrance to the capitol usually looks like:
It looks like we’re going to have wait a little bit longer for medical marijuana to be legal in Oklahoma. Earlier today, the Tulsa World reported that the Oklahoma Senate will not schedule a study on the for some reason controversial issue:
Marijuana advocates will have to wait another year to try to get their discussion in front of Oklahoma legislators after a committee chairman announced this week he would not schedule the interim study.
Following Arkansas’ near passing of medical marijuana on Nov. 6, Oklahoma marijuana advocates – including the leader of the Tulsa branch of National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws – were in high hopes of getting an interim study approved to discuss bills put forward by state Sen. Constance Johnson, D-Oklahoma City, aiming at legalizing marijuana for medicinal use.
That sucks. Because I struggle with, uh, anxiety, pain, and boredom, I also had “high” hopes this interim study would be approved. Oh well, at least non-medical marijuana is readily available and abundant in this state.
Also, I had no clue there was a Tulsa chapter for the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws. Hell, I didn’t even know there was an Oklahoma Chapter. I would schedule a fundraiser for them to help fund a state question petition drive, but I just don’t have the motivation to do so.
Anyway, here’s the excuse Sen. Brian Crain, R-Tulsa, gave for not scheduling the study:
Last week, right before the entire state conveniently checked out for four days of food, family, football, shopping and dangerously high levels of alcohol consumption, Mary Fallin announced that she would not release any emails or documentation related to her controversial decision to turn down federal healthcare funding for Obamacare and Medicaid. The announcement was given in response to an open records request from the Oklahoman.
Yeah, you read that right, the Oklahoman filed an open records request on a Republican governor. Throw it at us while you can, Mayans.
Gov. Mary Fallin’s office will not publicly release emails that could shed light on how she decided to create a state health insurance exchange and then changed her mind.
Last year, she accepted $54 million from the federal government to set up an exchange, an online insurance marketplace under the Affordable Care Act. She later rejected the money under pressure from Republican colleagues…
In response to a records request from The Oklahoman, Fallin’s general counsel, Steve Mullins, said these emails involve the governor’s deliberative process and won’t be released.
So, what? She denied access to someone who wants to read her confidential emails. Wouldn’t you do the same damn thing if you were governor? It’s not like she’s breaking the law or anything, right?
Open records advocates say that there is no exemption in the state’s Open Records Act for these emails and that her office is trying to redefine state law to limit public access.
“Governor Fallin wants a privilege of secrecy that apparently none of her predecessors thought was necessary,” said Joey Senat, a media law professor at Oklahoma State University.
Senat said once a personal note or memo becomes a recorded conversation or directive, it’s no longer considered personal. And executive privilege, he said, applies to the federal government and is not listed as an exemption under Oklahoma law.
“This ain’t the White House,” he said.
“Our statute is very clear: If there’s not a state statute that applies directly to those records, then it’s open. What he’s claiming is so broad it would defeat the very purpose of the Open Records Act.”
Wow, so apparently Mary Fallin thinks she’s above the law. Other than resurrecting the Credit Jewelers Cowboy to bring her to justice, how do we get her to release the information? Can’t someone file a lawsuit???
Robert D. Nelon, who has practiced media law in Oklahoma City for 35-plus years, said he’s never heard of an Oklahoma governor refusing to release public records on the basis of executive privilege, though he conceded it is unlikely that anyone would know unless it went to court.
“Certainly Mullins’ approach to transparency is more transparent, but still if you don’t get the documents the Open Records Act requires you to produce, then transparency is pretty meaningless,” he said. “That is a radical departure from what has happened in the past.”
This is pretty interesting stuff. I’ve talked to some Moles and have taken a deep look at this issue. I have three theories about what’s going on here. Here they are:
I guess you can say the phrase “Set in Stone” is no longer relevant.
Just days after being unveiled to the world, the typos found carved into the new granite 10 Commandments monument at the Oklahoma State Capitol have been corrected.
From News 9:
The typos on the new Ten Commandments monument at the State Capitol are fixed Saturday night.
The repair work was supposed to happen this weekend. News 9 went and checked it out and sure enough the misspellings are gone.
The $10,000 monument had two words spelled wrong. Sabbath had an “e” instead of an “a” before the “T-H”. And the word “maidservant” had a “u” instead of a “v.”
The monument was paid for with private money. The company who made it took responsibility for the mistakes and fixed them.
It’s not mentioned in the News 9 report, but there was a third typo, too. It was in the final commandment about cattle. The word “neighbors” was missing an apostrophe. I drove to the capitol to check the monument and that mistake was also fixed. That means we have an error free religious monument on our capitol grounds. Hooray!
Actually, this sucks. If you read this site often, you’re probably aware that I’m pretty fond of typos and French maidservants. Plus, outside of Iron Man, I’ve never really liked Black Sabbath. Sure, they were an influential heavy metal band and everything, but their sound hasn’t aged well. It’s like Thanksgiving wine or something. So in a way, I guess the typo laden monument was perfect for me.
Anyway, this whole controversy got me thinking, why should we stop with a list of ancient laws provided to us by a lonely Jewish man who got angry one day and climbed a mountain? There are a bunch of rules and codes and laws and myths that should be displayed on the steps of where our government conducts its business.
Here’s a list of 10:
1. The Bill of Rights
I bet even Moses would agree the Bill of Rights has more relevance to our political process and democracy than a list of 10 ancient Jewish laws. It’s the Bill of Rights that guarantees people the right to worship what they want say, say what they want, and own an assault weapon and shoot who they want. Seriously, can someone with $10,000 lying around make this happen? It makes almost too much sense.
2. I-Tunes Store – Terms and Conditions
This is now a bigger part of our life than the Bill of Rights and 10 Commandments combined. And you know what, no one ever reads or questions it. Putting it on our Capitol steps would possibly change that. Also, now that we know it’s easy to replace wording on granite, updating it every few week shouldn’t be an issue.
Earlier today, a 10 Commandments monument was unveiled on the northern grounds of the Oklahoma State Capitol. The monument was apparently installed to remind our lawmakers how archaic and bizarre Oklahoma legislation can truly be.
From what I’ve heard, the monument looks great…other than a couple of typos. English teacher Moses would not be proud.
From KOKH Fox 25:
A Ten Commandments monument unveiled at the state capitol Thursday comes with a mistake. The 6-foot-tall monument has the word “Sabbath” spelled “Sabbeth.”
However local pastors and online sources all show Sabbath spelled with an “a” and not an “e.”
The word “maidservant” also appears misspelled. The “v” appears to be a “u,” spelling the word “maidseruant.”
Fox 25 contacted State Representative Mike Ritze, who paid $10,000 for the monument. Rep. Ritze told us he saw prototypes before the monument was erected, but did not see the final version.
Rep. Ritz said Tulsa-based SI Memorials made the monument. Fox 25 tried calling the business, but it was already closed for the day.
Here’s a pic of the carnage that was posted to Twitter by KOSU’s Michael Cross:
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