Pretty soon Pat Powers is going to figure out that he shouldn't be crowing about the latest Survey USA poll. The results—commissioned by KSFY, KOTA, and AAN—show the Rounds campaign losing voters and failing to dominate, contrary to all expectations for a rich, well-known Republican in South Dakota. They show Daugaard holding steady but Wismer rising, with an opportunity to capitalize on her support for and Daugaard's opposition to the wildly popular minimum-wage ballot measure.

And then there's this expectation-buster:

In the race for secretary of state, likely voters say they prefer Republican Shantel Krebs over three other candidates. Krebs has 41 percent support and is followed by Aberdeen Democrat Angelia Schultz at 31 percent. Seventeen percent of those surveyed say they're still undecided while 7 percent would vote for Constitution Party candidate Lori Stacey and 4 percent for Libertarian Emmett Reistroffer [Scott Waltman, "Survey South Dakota: Daugaard Enjoys Solid Support, Likely Voters Favor Wage Boost," Aberdeen American News, 2014.09.10].

Shantel Krebs has been campaigning for the Secretary of State's job for over a year. Angelia Schultz jumped in last June and still hasn't launched a full-fledged campaign. On the rare occasions when Powers bothers to post something other than GOP press releases, he works himself into a lather ridiculing Schultz with rumor and piggish insult.

But there Schultz is, just ten points behind Krebs, who just like Mike Rounds can't parlay her electric smile into majority support. Angelia, you have some undecideds to meet. Get on the trail!

Down in the margin of error, we see Consti-spiracy Party candidate Lori Stacey pulling the perhaps predictable 7% protest vote from those who don't know better. As evidence that the South Dakota Libertarians have destroyed their brand, their Secretary of State candidate Emmett Reistroffer can't even beat Stacey, pulling only 4%.

On Libs, Krebs, minimum wage, and Rounds, the September 3–7 Survey USA poll provides support for theses the Madville Times has offered and undermines narratives Dakota War College has peddled. Expect some fake analysis from Pat any moment now explaining why we can't trust Survey USA.

31 comments

Pat Powers enjoys dismissing my criticism of Rep. Kristi Noem's bad policy, laziness, vacuousness, and legislative ineffectiveness as childish insults or mental disorder. If Pat thinks my policy critiques of Noem are deranged, his own obsession with attacking Democratic candidate for Secretary of State Angelia Schultz must warrant a straitjacket. Unable to tolerate a strong woman who disagrees with him, Pat is on a blog campaign to discredit the Aberdeen writer and former Defense intelligence analyst as a bitchy teen drama queen.

Compare Pat's vitriol with the reasonable portrait Ken Santema painted of Schultz based on his interview with her during her unsuccessful campaign for the District 3 Democratic Senate nomination. As a Libertarian, Santema is principledly conservative than Powers, yet he appears not to find Schultz a threat or an object of ridicule. He deems Schultz logical, knowledgeable, and less partisan than he expected.

But as usual, when someone challenges one of Pat's political patrons, Pat goes on the attack. Angelia Schultz is challenging Shantel Krebs, a key cog in the GOP-Rounds political machine whose favor Pat so craves. Thus, Angelia Schultz is a mean girl.

The proper response to any lecture from Pat Powers about pettiness, cattiness, and "talking smack about other politicos" is to point a mirror his way (preferably a mirror with hyperlinks to Pat's own catty smack here, here, here, here, and here... and that's just since June 26).

The proper response also includes linking to Larry Kurtz's stunning claim that Shantel Krebs may be the queen of the SDGOP mean girls. According to Kurtz, Shantel Krebs, who served in the Legislature with Noem, is the source of the story he ran in 2010 accusing then-candidate Kristi Noem of adultery.

Imagine it: a Republican woman is running to unseat a Democratic incumbent, and another Republican woman calls a blogger five steps to my left to tell him the Republican candidate has cheated on her husband. If true, that story would pretty much negate any mewling Pat makes about his party's uncatty moral superiority.

89 comments

...Says Bosworth Spokesman Peddled Porn

When Annette Bosworth was a useful story to distract from Mike Rounds and to attack me personally, Pat Powers cheered the fake U.S. Senate candidate, heeling to her beck and call and peddling her propaganda as gospel. When my team discovered irregularities in Bosworth's nominating petition that signaled violations of law that should have disqualified her from the primary ballot, Powers yawned at those findings.

But now, when Team Bosworth responds to felony charges for petition violations with a media campaign attacking Pat's Republican patrons, including a late-to-the-party exposé of corruption in the foster care system titled "South Dakota Attorney General Marty Jackley's Big Pedophilia Problem," Powers finally gets off his ideological backside and asks real questions.

Two months after the initial petition challenge that led to the charges on which Bosworth was arraigned Monday, Powers decides to look at the petitions (or perhaps is encouraged to look at the petitions by his maligned GOP pals?) and finds, lo and behold, even more signatures that Bosworth said she witnessed but apparently did not. Only Pat Powers is surprised... but notice also that, at this point, Powers does not substantiate his claim by pointing to specific names or on-the-record testimony.

Powers also raises a question about the validity of signatures on a group of petition sheets dated March 20–22. Powers finds it suspicious that Bosworth claims to have collected signatures from a bunch of folks from Minnehaha and Lincoln counties on the same days that other sheets show her collecting numerous signatures from folks from Pennington and other Black Hills counties. My petition review team raised the same questions about petition sheets like #31, #42, #190, and #196. We considered including those suspicions on our petition challenge but, wanting to keep the petition challenge on solid legal and evidentiary grounds, chose not to. We saw at least reasonable doubt in the fact that State AA basketball was taking place in Rapid City March 20–22. (I attempted to explain this to Pat and his readers in his comment section, but he still can't bear to publish evidence that suggests I was right all along about Bosworth while he front ed for her.)

It is conceivable—not certain, but conceivable—that Bosworth, who was in Rapid City buying folks beer that weekend, went to the tournament, sat with a bunch of Sioux Falls fans, collected a few sheets of signatures, then went around town and collected a bunch of locals' signatures. But now, with more time to investigate than the ridiculously brief one week given for petition challenges, investigators may well find that some of those East River–West River signatures were indeed not witnessed by Bosworth, which would only add to the felony charges she already faces.

Powers also goes for another seamy underbelly of the Bosworth story. Enjoying character assassination, Powers takes up numerous online allegations that Bosworth's new BFF Lee Stranahan peddled porn with his wife. Powers finds Stranahan's behavior more scandalous than the child abuse allegations plaguing the state's foster care system. Stranahan hasn't shot any nude photos of Bosworth yet, but his naked opportunism threatens to harm real efforts to unearth corruption in South Dakota government. Stranahan brings up the Schwab-Taliaferro-Mette foster care issues in Aberdeen, not because he really cares about them, but because that story adds to the media smokescreen he is fanning for his client. IN doing so, Stranahan makes it easy for GOP apologists like Powers to portray such stories not as real issues about which South Dakotans should be concerned but as the mere ravings of untrustworthy outsiders.

We may take some small comfort in the fact that Powers is finally exposing Team Bosworth for the frauds and exploiters that they are. (Of course, he's inkled that way before, only to back off when it served his pruposes.) Alas, Powers is doing so quite late, and not for truth and justice, but merely as favors for his friends.

164 comments

In today's demonstration of his smallness, Pat Powers dismisses his former sweetheart Annette Bosworth's wild attempts at litigating her felony case in public as a "conspiracy thing." He takes this position because Gordon Howie has (stupidly, self-damagingly) promoted Bosworth's latest patient-turned-political smokescreener, whose video "testimony" is 100% irrelevant to the felony charges Bosworth faces.

Howie had a chance to see through Bosworth's baloney back in July. His interview with her (now deleted, darn it!) before her official campaign announcement exposed her ill-prepared conservative fakery and did nothing to deter Howie from immediately encouraging Stace Nelson to run. The only reason I can imagine Howie would offer even this mealy-mouthed not-quite defense of Bosworth would be to leverage her claims of corrupt "entrenched powers" for his own anti-Mike Rounds campaign. (Gordon, I'll say to you what I said to candidates before the primary: Annette Bosworth offers you no useful synergy.)

But Pat Powers is the baloney meister. When I said Annette Bosworth was bad news, Powers backed Bosworth, because he doesn't like me. When Gordon Howie says Annette Bosworth is good news, Powers backs away from Bosworth, because he doesn't like Howie. Blogging doesn't get much smaller than that.

3 comments

O.K., I'm news. Actually, I'm not, but Pat Powers wants me to be, because, like fake Senate candidate Annette Bosworth, he survives on distracting readers from the main point (Annette Bosworth is a scam artist, bilking vulnerable donors around the country with a cynical montage of conservative talking points that she doesn't really believe, all the while refusing to pay former employees and refund the raffle ticketholders she cheated).

In today's fun and games, Powers cites the affidavit of one Tanya Montgomery, another former employee of Bosworth's clinic who is suing to get back wages. Montgomery says she was offered big money by an online journalist for information about her work for Bosworth:

In July 2013, I received a call from a writer for an online political blog inquiring about the small claims action I had filed. I did not initiate contact with the writer. He was seeking confirmation of the information found in the public file on the small claims action.

At that time the writer offered to pay me my unpaid wages if I would participate in additional interviews regarding my employment with IM, PHS and Dr. Bosworth. I refused the offer and had had no further contact with the writer until after the Motion to Dismiss and Motion for Attorney’s Fees was filed in February 2014, as the action again became an issue in the media. I have not received compensation from any writer or member of the media nor have I cooperating in providing information or documents for stories or posts [Tanya Montgomery, affidavit, Montgomery v. Bosworth, March 2014; quoted by Pat Powers, "Plaintiff in Montgomery v. Bosworth Court Case Claims Blogger Offered Her Thousands of Dollars for Her Interview," Dakota War College, 2014.03.24].

From this statement, and from Bosworth's filing of lengthy excerpts from the Madville Times in her court affidavit (Hey! Thanks for reading!), Pat Powers leaps to the conclusion that I am the blogger who offered Tanya Montgomery thousands of dollars for her story.

For the record:

  1. I do not recall speaking with a Tanya Montgomery at any point in the summer of 2013.
  2. I have never given or offered money to anyone named Tanya Montgomery.
  3. I have not volunteered to act as a conduit for money from another source to anyone named Tanya Montgomery for any information.
  4. Of the many people I have spoken to about the Bosworth story, none have received payment or an offer of payment from me for their information.
  5. No outside source, no evil George Soros "lurking behind the liberal curtain," has offered to spot me any amount of money to get sources to talk about Annette Bosworth. People are talking about Annette Bosworth because they see bad things happening that they want to stop.
  6. The money I have spent covering the Bosworth story consists of a few dollars to obtain records of Bosworth hubby Chad Haber's corporate filings in Utah, and I spent that money grudgingly, because I am a bigger cheapskate than any Republican. I haven't even coughed up the cash to subscribe to PACER and read Raymond Paul Morris's claim that Haber was the mastermind of the criminal 100X mortgage-flipping scheme.
  7. Beyond that, my expense on the Bosworth story consists of research, time on the phone, and the effort to write the accurate, documented articles on the Bosworth campaign that you expect.

And in all of my writing on this story, I have gotten nothing as wrong as Pat gets when he claims I have offered a Bosworth source thousands of dollars for her story. His claim his as wildly false and verging on slanderous as his claim last summer that I stole documents from a locked desk in Chad Haber's office.

I have been diligent and truthful in my coverage of Annette Bosworth's Senate campaign fundraising scam from day one. Pat Powers has been neither.

Sources, to be clear: you won't get rich talking to me. But if you tell me truth that's in the public interest, you'll get your story told well... and if we keep speaking up, you may get justice.

p.s.: If I have $5,000 to spend on the blog, I won't waste it buying a source on one story when I already have lots of information pouring out of the leaky Bosworth bucket for free. I'll spend that $5,000 on a grand tour of South Dakota, talk to a hundred people, and get interviews, pictures, and video for a whole year's worth of quality blog stories... and some fresh kuchen and buffalo burgers.

52 comments

I'm John McClane; Pat is Sgt. Powell.

Fake U.S. Senate candidate Annette Bosworth and her scheming husband Chad Haber are charismatic scammers, exerting almost cultish power over their followers. But we can overcome their manipulative control.

Witness Pat Powers. For months, Powers has drunk the Bosworth-Haber Kool-Aid (I hear Chad Haber uses that Kool-Aid language himself in his political strategy meetings). He has fallen for Haber's lies, treating Bosworth as a serious candidate, parroting her press releases, ignoring big stories that would hurt Bosworth, and responding to my reporting on Bosworth's suspicious activities by accusing me of theft from a non-existent locked desk.

But now eight months of serious blog coverage from the Madville Times, Jonathan Ellis's strong exposé in Sunday's Sioux Falls paper of Bosworth's questionable fundraising business practices, and the overwhelming weight of facts and public statements from a wide variety of people cheated by Team Bosworth-Haber have turned Powers back to truth in blogging.

It was hard: while he acknowledged on Sunday that the Ellis article was "critical," Powers still tried to bury it by moving a Saturday evening post on Bosworth's cheesy television ad up above that mention in his blog order, along with a quick repost, without commentary, of Bosworth's USD cheerleader tweet.

But then the tips started getting to him. Monday, Powers ran a post on former Bosworth employee Mathia Rall contradicting the Bosworth alibi on the infamous Che Guevara t-shirt. After the Madville Times broke that story in June and won Bosworth some scornful national attention, Bosworth and Haber tried to claim the shirt was an innocent joke, just something she'd received as a gift in Haiti. Powers reports that Rall says Haber made the Che shirts.

Tuesday, Powers felt compelled to note that Bosworth's raffle scam and stiffing of Florida ad company SSC are getting press outside South Dakota.

And now, eight months after falling under Chad and Annette's spell, Powers finally wakes up and does his first honest-to-Gaia blogging on Team Bosworth-Haber. Powers reports that Chad and Annette had three tax liens filed against them by the state of Utah. While those liens have been resolved, a fourth against Annette remains open.

The most telling phrase of Powers's report is at the end:

I did contact the Bosworth campaign early this afternoon for comment, but I haven’t heard anything back as of this writing [Pat Powers, "Bosworth Financial Troubles Don't End at the State Border. 2013 Utah Tax Lien Still Pending," Dakota War College, 2014.02.25].

When Chad stops returning Pat's phone calls, it's clear Haber and Bosworth are on the run.

Welcome to the party, Pat. It's too bad it took this much heavy fire to get you to realize who the real criminals are.

12 comments

Dakota War College continues to offer brilliant demonstrations of Newspeak. First, the SDGOP press release machine celebrates Martin Luther King Day by offering the Republican definition of diversity, derived from the host list for a fundraiser for Rep. Kristi Noem:

...you have Congresswoman Noem’s regular & notable supporters, including Ted Hustead, Steve Kirby, Peggy & Steve Stout, & Matt McCaulley.

But then you’ve got a number of other people. Corey Brown, Tim Rave, Brian Gosch & Dave Lust from the legislature, the Rounds campaign team of Bob Gray, Rob Skjonsberg & Jason Glodt, and Governor Dennis Daugaard

I don’t recall when I’ve ever noticed such a diverse group of people throwing a shindig of this nature [Pat Powers, "Legislative Leaders, Governor Daugaard... Noem," Dakota War College, 2014.01.20].

Diverse: rich Republicans and powerful Republicans. Right.

Maybe all those diverse supporters can help Noem with her laundry. Powers runs a photo that shows Kristi's husband Bryon is falling behind on the housework and declares Noem is "no different than the rest of us."

  1. The rest of us don't have family businesses propped up by over three million dollars in federal welfare payments.
  2. Very few of the rest of us show up for work for 160 days, get very little done (still no farm bill!), and earn $174,000. That kind of productivity gets the rest of us fired.
  3. Different than makes no more sense than green than or rich than. Use different from.

Despite his nod to "diversity", Powers loathes party activists who would dare bring any political ideas different from the platform of his own preferred conservative patrons. He complains that Ron Paul activists have taken over the Iowa party and failed to pay proper homage to the people Powers wishes still ran the party. Darned diversity!

Powers represents a South Dakota Republican worldview that revolves around their own conformity. They want to look around and see a party and a government controlled by people just like their narrow, comfortable slice of the ideological and demographic pie. They want to keep the pluribus away from their comfortable unum.

12 comments

O.K., maybe not flunking, but earning a demerit. Pat Powers's headline is premature, not prescient:

Powers Wrong on FEC Deadline 20140114

The deadline for Senate and House candidates to file their year-end 2013 campaign finance reports with the Federal Election Commission is January 31. Nertz: I was really looking forward to parsing those documents tomorrow. Stay tuned: When you want accurate election information, you'll hear it first here on the Madville Times....

2 comments

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