Friday, March 18, 2016

It's hard not to write during a high political season so this blog is back. Here's a link to a recent "Trumpism" conversation I had with Ahmed Tharwat of BelAhdab TV. This link works when copied into browser:

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Rick "centrality of faith" Santorum

Rick "centrality of faith" Santorum's challenge of "certain" winner Mitt Romney (2012's Tom Dewey?): I was state (VP Mondale's MN) campaign manager for President Carter's 1980 re-election. Many Democrats were rooting for Gov. Reagan to become the 1980 GOP nominee, believing Reagan to be an unelectable right wing radical (1964 Goldwater champion), "B" (Bedtime for Bonzo)-grade actor candidate who ...had failed in his 1968 & 1976 nomination bids. The 2012 spotlight moves to Illinois on March 20 and returns south to Louisiana on March 24. In the Great Depression of the 1930s, poverty-stricken Louisiana was a hotbed of radicalism (called populist by some and facist by others), embodied by their Democratic governor, then U.S. Sen., Huey P. Long. Teamed with popular radio preacher Father Charles Coughlin, Long was seen as a threat to President Roosevelt's 1936 reelection before Long was assassinated in 1935. Long's masterful stump and broadcast presence had contributed to a charisma that transcended his public rhetoric and stands on issues. Q: Taking a look at the recent GOP exit-poll internals of married women, workers & younger voters--does Sen. Santorum have Huey Long-like, Ronald Reagan-like electoral potential? If so, (we) supporters of President Obama might want to be careful what we wish for where Sen. Santorum is concerned. 02.23.1934, U.S. Sen. Huey P. Long, national radio speech, Every Man a King, details his philosophy (biblical Christianity, anti-elites, pro-economic equity) and platform (redistribution of wealth), excerpts: Is that the right of life, my friends, when young children of this country are being reared into a sphere which is owned more by 12 men than it is by 120,000,000?

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Santorum Stampede: you know he's right

Adrenaline rules a lot of Americans. For example, there are few things I like better than Chris Matthews' insightful and informed Hardball thinking. Today he got at least two of his guests to agree to the notion of a delegates-short-of-nomination Mitt Romney needing to bargain for Gingrich, Paul and Santorum support/ers. Matthews observing that we might see the first unsettled-in-advance nomination since the 1952 Eisenhower-Taft contest. I half expect the Santorum campaign to outright adopt the "In your heart, you know he's right" 1964 Goldwater slogan.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

I listened intently and carefully to Hubert Humphrey from, roughly, the 1964 Democratic National Convention to his passing in 1978 (1911 -1978), and read many of his previous remarks in speeches, books and interviews. At age 10, I was energized by his But Not Senator Goldwater speech. At 14, I hammered lawn signs together at the Democratic Farmer Labor (DFL) Party booth at the Minnesota State Fair in Saint Paul. Later, I was a Humphrey volunteer, supporter & staffer. His final speeches in 1977--MN AFL-CIO, U.S. Senate & U.S. House--felt then, & now, like prayerful insights from a caring, wise, reflective, gentle soul.

Like many of you, I'm now preparing to celebrate the Humphrey Centennial, May 27, 2011. I'm working with the nonpartisan, educational, and focused on finding solutions, May 27, open to all, "Hubert H. Humphrey Birthday Centennial Reunion & Policy Discussions." Note: Advance registration will be required, and include the opportunity to select the individual Policy Discussions you wish to participate in. With many requests & invitations pending, the Speakers, Volunteers, Founding Sponsors, Donors, Honorary Co-Chairs, Moderators & Panelists, include:

Hubert H. "Skip" Humphrey, Walter Mondale, Arvonne Fraser, Mark Dayton, R.T. Rybak, Barbara Johnson, Al Eisele, Mark Ritchie, Joan Anderson Growe, Al Quie, Kim Ellison, Lori Sturdevant, D. J. Leary, Tom Tipton, Shar Knutson, Vance Opperman, Kathy Tunheim, Ted Grindal, Jack Ohman, Glenn Totten, Blois Olson, Libby & Tom Horner, Norman Sherman, Steve Hunegs, David Erickson, Matt Entenza, Steven Clift, Dane Smith, Lisa Goodman, John Qunicy, Elizabeth Glidden, Dee Long, Alberto Monserrate, Charles Samuelson, Steve Novak, Ahmed Tharwat, Todd Otis, Nancy Farnham, Virginia Melvie, Sarah Helgen, Jackie Bateman, Scott Benson, Ellen Watters, Diane O'Brien, Carole Faricy, Brian Henry, Susan Stuart, Jennifer Moire, more than 1600 "Friends of Hubert H. Humphrey liberalism" (Democrats, Independents & Republicans); and many more great folks.

The "Hubert H. Humphrey Birthday Centennial Reunion & Policy Discussions" founding sponsors are Vance Opperman; Kathy Tunheim; Lockridge Grindal Nauen P.L.L.P., Ted Grindal; and, the "Friends of Hubert H. Humphrey liberalism" on Facebook. Again, the events take place on Friday, May 27, the 100th anniversary of Humphrey's birth. The location is the Minneapolis City Hall, where Humphrey began his career of public service as Mayor fighting to end anti-Semitism in the city. The Humphrey Centennial Policy Discussions are 8 AM to 6 PM, including a Hubert H. Humphrey State Capitol Memorial Statue luncheon.

The Policy Discussions will open with remarks by former MN Attorney General Skip Humphrey, followed by keynoter Al Eisele, editor-at-large of The Hill and author of "Almost to the Presidency, a dual biography of Hubert Humphrey and Eugene McCarthy." Skip Humphrey's hopes for the Policy Discussions: 1) civil, reasoned, fact-based small group discussions; 2) looking ahead 5, 10, 15 years to 3) find solutions to intractable social problems; 4) identify strategies for taking advantage of new opportunities; and 5) produce summary reports for distribution and posting. The participant-driven discussions will include topics like, The Future of: American Workers; Citizens in Politics; Jobs, Farm Income & Energy; Liberty, Equality & Fairness; the U.S. in the World; Learning & Information; Health Care & Aging; News & Privacy; 21st Century governance; the legacy & future of Hubert H. Humphrey liberalism; and more.

As so many of us have come to appreciate & value, Minneapolis, MN, is the birthplace & continuing home of Hubert H. Humphrey liberalism under Mayor R.T. Rybak and City Council President Barbara Johnson. U.S. Rep. Keith Ellison of Minneapolis is often at the front of liberalism nationally. As a U.S. Senator, now-Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton voted with his colleague and great liberal leader, U.S. Sen. Paul Wellstone, against authorizing President George Bush to go to war in Iraq. And, in 2010, Mark Dayton won election as Governor asking that tax rates be adjusted so that many of those who have benefited greatly in our economy will pay taxes at rates similar to many of those who have not prospered in our economy.

The Humphrey Centennial Reunion is from 6 to 8 PM in the Minneapolis City Hall Rotunda. Speakers will include Mayor Rybak, former MN Secretary of State Joan Anderson Growe, Gov. Mark Dayton, and Vice President Mondale. Mondale, a Minnesota native who now lives in Minneapolis, was a great friend and colleague of Hubert Humphrey's. His call to all:

Come to the Minneapolis City Hall on Friday, May 27, to celebrate Hubert's life and continue the good fight for working families.

info: "Friends of Hubert H. Humphrey liberalism" on Facebook.


Saturday, October 2, 2010

October 2, 2010

Great and loyal friend Ham Thompson leaves a legacy of love

A prince among Minnesota Democrats, and a good friend of hundreds of Minnesotans, Charles Hamilton "Ham" Thompson, 57, died prematurely on Saturday, Sept. 25, 2010, at his home in Shorewood, Minn. Ham is survived by his sister, Jennifer Pierson of Denver, Colorado; step sisters, Susie McDowell of Jackson Hole, Wyoming; Helen Waldron of Minnetonka, Minn.; step brother, John P. Snyder III of Rancho Sante Fe, California; and many nieces and nephews . As announced earlier, Ham's life will be celebrated at memorial party of family and friends today, Saturday, Oct. 2, at Woodhill County Club, 200 Woodhill Avenue in Wayzata, Minn. Memorials are encouraged to the Animal Humane Society. Ham loved and cared for animals.

A few of the many heartfelt comments from Ham's friends include:
* Extremely sad news about our dear friend, Ham. He walked as a gentle giant among us. We were all very fortunate to have him touch our lives.

* Through all the phenomenal work he did I always felt there was an untouchable part of his soul that remained a mystery. His dedication and commitment to all we hold so dear will be sorely missed.

* I was a big fan of Ham's. He was a decent guy through-and through.

In the 1970's, Ham came to work as the assistant finance director of the Minnesota Democratic Farmer Labor (DFL) Party He was hugely energetic, and a real and reliable friend to all. He succeeded through courtesy, attention to detail, and never giving up on a prospect or a candidate or a cause. Later, he was a key staff member of the campaigns of Joan Anderson Growe and Warren Spannaus. He was also active in the campaigns of Rudy Perpich, Hubert H. Humphrey, Walter F. Mondale, Jimmy Carter, Rick Nolan, Gerry Sikorski, Mark Dayton, and candidates for legislator, commissioner and council member too numerous to mention..

Ham was a business partner of Carole Faricy of St. Paul, Minn. He was a "doer"...not a talker...delivering services in all forms of fundraising for political, civic. non-profit, and charitable causes. Ham was was a leader in helping break down the outdated, self-defeating and pervasive sexism, racism, homophobia and class and age bias in politics and government. Though pulling his hair out getting every available dollar raising money, and losing his voice organizing conventions successfully working the state convention floor for 22 hours, Ham helped make Joan the first woman to be endorsed for the U.S. Senate in DFL history. Last year, he was a lead organizer of the 25th anniversary celebration of Joan Growe's 1984 U.S. Senate campaign. Ham's colleague on the Growe campaign, Minneapolis City Council Member Scott Benson, will speak of Ham's political life and contributions at today's memorial.

Working every last moment to win liberal victories for change, Ham truly loved politics, political volunteers, and political candidates, especially the new candidates and the underdogs. He so loved a challenge. He believed and practiced charity, hard work and truthfulness. Ham told you what you needed to hear to succeed in your campaign or cause even if his report or advice disagreed with your pre-conceptions. He was a staunch opponent of conventional wisdom. He was a perfectionist in good manners and courtesies. His invitations and thank you notes to friends were personal and handwritten. He preferred long and loving phone calls and personal visits to cold computer emails. Like many of us, he experienced some serious and lasting pain and loss but rarely spoke of it. He never dwelled on what a person may be doing wrong. He focused on setting and sharing better ways of doing things (even on the golf course).

Ham loved people. He was always ready to help on a personal or political need. Actual and timely help. Just visiting with Ham was a big boost of cheer. His friends and clients turned to him for ideas, names, techniques, follow-through, and solid results and accomplishments He was practical. He would tend bar at your event and would go far out of his way to pick-up and drive disabled friends to parties and meetings. And, preferring and practicing love over hate, Ham came over time to be strongly disillusioned with negative politicians and negative campaigning, and to prefer working on social and charitable causes.

To so many of us who had the honor of knowing and the privilege of working with Ham, we will always remember his kind and gentle nature and thorough dedication to his family and friends. It is very painful for Ham's family and friends to lose Ham so suddenly and at such an early age. But we are comforted and sustained by memories of Ham's cheerfulness, staunch liberalism, and great personal loyalty. Ham Thompson set out to make a positive difference in this world and he so clearly succeeded. God bless you and keep you, Ham. As Mondale said of Humphrey, you have taught me/us how to love. Bob Meek, 10.02.2010###

Saturday, May 30, 2009

June 16, 2009 Joan Growe Endorsement Reunion

Joan Growe 1984 U.S. Senate Endorsement Reunion

June 16/17 is the 25th anniversary of Joan Grow's 1984 Minnesota Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party state convention victory...making Joan the 1st woman endorsed for U.S. Senate in DFL history. 19 ballots over 22 consecutive hours...all night long.

Endorsement came only after Joan had withdrawn from the contest, even though she had led on every ballot.

Margaret Anderson Kelliher and Vance Opperman are co-chairing the 1984 Joan Growe U.S. Senate endorsement reunion on Tuesday, June 16, 2009 from 5 to 7 PM at Key Investment, 225 South Sixth Street, Suite 5200, in Minneapolis (55402).

Please come. Please tell your friends of Joan Growe. Please RSVP: facebook, evite, or 612-333-6700.

Monday, April 27, 2009


Hi & good morning. Just a little about me & why I write this blog. I started blogging on Yahoo 360 a little over a year ago (;_ylt=AhDjujkZPyWG.BdpTwPo2mq0AOJ3?cq=1). It began as a blog recounting and raising questions about the I-35W bridge collapse and evolved into general issue advocacy. Facts & questions not reflections. I began this bobmeek blog to tell more personal stories. I was reluctant at first, as in, who would care what I've done or think, but changed my mind after a trip to Tucson, AZ. A popular attraction just outside of Tucson is a rocky area and stream bed where folks 10,000 years ago trekked on their journeys. Some of them left marks/drawings on the rocks. Today's guides interpret the possible meaning of the drawings as 1) I was here, 2) here's what I see in the sky, 3) I'm leaving food for future visitors hidden in a cave over there, 4) danger, etc. Like a flash of light, personal blogging suddenly made sense.

I think about the extraordinary opportunities and teachers I have had in my 55 years. Among those I've learned so much from and owe so much to: my mom and dad, my sister, my niece and nephew, my grandparents, Richard Moe, D.J. Leary, Hank Fischer, Patrick Marx, John Marty, Bob Hurner, Kaye Roan, Nancy Farnham, Betty South, Al Saunders, Hubert Humprhey, Ted Grindal, Michele Grindal, Lori Sturdevant, Bill Salisbury, B. J. French, Steve Pistner, Walter Mondale, Linda Jadwin, Maxine Issacs, Vance Opperman, Warren Spannaus, Bob Hentges, Mary Monahan, Karl Struble, Ellen Struble, Jon Max, Glenn Totten, Joan Growe, Elaine Voss, Steve Novak, Susan Stuart Otto, Tom Horner, John Ewoldt, Larry Charles, Steve Martin, Bill Frame, Steve Shank, Sara Meyer, Gary Eichten, Ron Groat, Bob Deboer, Kathy Deboer, Steve Endean, Ned Crosby, Virginia Sweeney, Jim Dickenson, Ruth Orrick, David Walsh, Char Wegleitner, Mr. Dwight Opperman, Tom Moran, Linda Holstein, Mary Sicilia, Vicki Eaklor, Mona Schmidt, Blois Olson, Nat Bennett, Lou Ann Olson, David Erickson, Laurie Hobbs, Kathy Tunheim, Sean Kershaw, Ahmed Tharwat....this list of kind and generous people who have given so much to me is numerous, incomplete, and, God willing, will grow and continue. My life's many errors are mine alone. I owe so very many of my extraordinary opportunities to these wonderful people. Thank you all.