To the losers go the spoils

Karen Klinzing, a creationist-friendly Republican who lost her run for the Minnesota legislature, has been rewarded by our Republican governor, Tim Pawlenty, with a nice cushy job…as Assistant Commissioner of Education.

There’s nothing quite so charming as the sight of a conservative hack getting handed a sinecure, and one from which she can work mischief.

(via Lloyletta)


  1. bernarda says

    Losers are winners. That is the Rethuglican Way. Well, it helps if you a xian. Apparently Jesus likes losers. Well, Jesus seems also to like them when they are Rethuglicans who missed the debacle, like brokeback mountain Brownback or whatever the moron’s name is.

    That goes back well before the loser Bush became president.

  2. Fox1 says

    My father, who voted an otherwise straight dem ticket, voted for Pawlenty because he was, quote, “good enough.”

    Thanks a lot, dad. This father’s day, you’re getting the ugliest damn tie I can find.

  3. says

    Am I cross with the Bush administration about the debacle in Iraq and our “almighty leader’s” infatuation with a post colonial ideology? Yes.

    But I am more cross about the fact that we are willingly importing evangelical and creationist nonsense from the US. Those crazy churches have carte blanche to set up and peddle their crap over here as well. Turn the TV on, and there is another insane, money grabbing american preacher threatening us all with hell and damnation if we don’t get our credit cards out. At least prior to their arrival, we only had to contend with traditional churches quietly going about their business of “saving souls” on sundays.

    Now, we are inundated with this nonsense. But with the most objectionable kind of nonsense, the creationist and evangelical fundamentalist. Bah hum bug.

  4. says

    …Oh, bloody hell and dammit. I moved out of America in 1999 to move to Britain, due to… well, to explain that in a way that doesn’t have connotations that don’t apply takes a while. It took one year for the place to go to the dogs.

  5. SEF says

    Adam, you’re sounding like the Babylon 5 bod who thought he couldn’t ever leave the space-station or something bad would happen to it, as with the previous 4 he’d left.

  6. BlueIndependent says

    Figures. At least the story had critiques that pointed out the very interesting double-standard republicans have for their own when it comes to government, i.e. government is bad unless it’s a big government populated with friends that are beholden to you for your big favor.

    So now these appointed busy-bodies will be in office with Pawlenty and their factor 3 raises, barring leaving to “be with their family”, for another 4 years?

  7. Keanus says

    Speaking of hacks. Dinesh D’Souza has a new book out which is reviewed in today’s NY Times by Alan Wolfe a political sciencce prof at Boston College and a writer for The New Republic. In his closing paragraph Wolfe writes that D’Souza is “Like his hero Joe McCarthy, [with] has no sense of shame. He is a childish thinker and writer tackling subjects about which he knows little to make arguments that reek of political extremism. His book is a national disgrace, a sorry example of a publishing culture more concerned with the sensational than the sensible.” Interestingly, D’Souza has a column in today’s Philadelphia Inquirer in which he says more or less the opposite of what Wolfe ascribes to him in his review. D’Souza is surely a hack and a basket case. Why he continues to get writing opportunities is beyond me. The Inquirer essay is at

  8. says

    Wasn’t there some concern about the U.S. falling behind other countries in techical expertise and scientific discoveries? Perhaps I should write and thank the governor for making sure that Canadians such as I will never lack for high-tech jobs?

  9. talapus says

    This is yet another example of the Republicans looking after their own. They are very good at this. The GOP manages to keep its losers in circulation by plying them with consolation prizes that position them to inflict maximal damage on the public good (think John Ashcroft as AG), or by finding them salubrious digs in right-wing thinktanks (e.g., Rick Santorum, wherever he is now). The Democrats, on the other hand, have a saddening propensity to discard and isolate their losers, effectively shutting the door to future recovery by allowing them to continue to be branded as losers. I suspect that the Republican strategy may be the better one for the long-term evolutionary success of the party.

  10. says

    After reading that link to the Dec 2003 post, I was struck by the number of times a Republican had to tell Eva Young about diversity. Diversity of views, diversity of beliefs, diversity of religions. Diversity, diversity, diversity. Don’t Republicans hate the word?

    And here she was, lecturing Eva on it.

  11. Robin Levett says

    G Tingey said:

    There is this raving mad RC woman called Ruth Kelly – who is in OPUS DEI for bog’s sake, and is our “government’s” … Education Secretary ….

    It’s worse than that – she did no more harm than anyone else at Education. She’s now Communities Secretary, however, responsible for equality legislation…

  12. says

    I just hope she doesn’t do “a heckuva job” because then we’re all doomed.

    Seriously though, the Republican party seems to put loyalty far above competence. I can’t help wondering whether this is part of their strategy to undermine education to the point where K-12 will be willingly turned over to their churches.

  13. MReap says

    OK, the MN science standards are due for review in 2008. I see two options:
    1. Get rid of Pawlenty
    2. Get good folks on the review committee
    Hmm, #1 is not really an option but an imperative.

    Commish Alice Seagren is no Yecke but she is an appointee of Pawlenty. I did my time on the original committe fighting Dave Eaton and Cheri Yecke and will put forth my name again for the review committee. PZ please, please try to get on the review committee. I can give you pointers on how to fashion your responses to the selection questionnaire so that you’ll pass muster.

  14. says

    MR: You and the whole group did a great job on the committee last time. Are there any specifics at this point on what can go wrong? is MnCSE gearing up?


  15. MReap says

    You’re right, MnCSE needs to keep this on our radar. I haven’t heard anything specific about reviewing the standards or what political winds are blowing. However, this latest little kerfluffle means we need to keep alert.

  16. MReap says

    One way to keep on top of things is to regularly peruse the Dept. of Ed’s website. They post all sorts of things as “press releases” and they would post the openings for review there first. We should also keep an eye on the legislature for anti-science rumblings. I’m such a nerd that, when I can, I watch the public TV feed of the MN House and Senate committee meetings (MN-SPAN?) Pretty revealing things get mentioned in an off hand way in some of those committee meetings!

    There is another source that I won’t mention here. Drop me an email.

  17. stogoe says

    This is just like Kansas and Phill Kline. He lost his election as state AG and then was appointed Johnson County AG, where 65% voted against him.

    Phill Kline repeatedly harassed abortion providers, trying to subpoena their medical records so he could wank to them in his office late at night. Or something.

  18. Chinchillazilla says

    *cries* I want to get out of the country when I turn eighteen, but it seems like you have to live in Antarctica to get away…

    At least I like penguins. (Maybe we can claim it as non-manifest destiny?)