To my long time fans (all eight of you) and the few snakes who couldn’t take their eyes off my snake charming during the days of the Red Plan Saga you will not be surprised by this post about my sleeping. When I get my dander up I work like a fiend. (My wife confirmed this last night) I had many posts over the course of the most intense two years of my fight against the depredations of the Duluth School Board (upon which I once served) that commented on my state of sleeplessness and fatigue. If you were to put “sleep” in this blog’s search engine you would probably find dozens of posts especially from 2009 in which the word is embedded.
This may be a repeat of that phenomenon. This post is related to a possible new mania – an improbable run for the Congress. After the previous post at about 10:30 pm I put in an hour setting up an incipient www.welty4congress.com website before going to bed at half past eleven.
The new site not up yet. I’m not in that big a hurry. My most pressing problem is turning my attention once again to the book I’ve been going on about for ages. I’ve got a first chapter to write (or at least rough out) but I awoke from four glorious hours of sleep despite a still achy back from a dream. In it I was putting a winning sales team together. It was a dream I would have expected from my salesman brother more than me a blissfully un-entrepreneurial sort. I had a great product. (No idea what it was) I had a management team out recruiting top competing salesmen. I was working with my sales team to sell something. I woke up invigorated. It was only 3:30am.
The reason for my renvigoration came about because of the confession to my wife that I’m on a goose chase again. She is the skeptic and has every right to be. To her the notion of using a congressional campaign to sell a book is fantastic – as in fantasy – as in “Hurry and get me a straight jacket!!!”
God love her. She gave me a lecture about disappointing an associate who I’ve spent six years drawing information out to write my latest book. She thinks the run for the Congress is my betrayal of the book and the associate. She thinks I won’t write it because I’m only after the goose. I’m in no position to tell her otherwise but I’m pretty sure she’s wrong. I think I need the adrenaline rush of an impossible dream to actually get the book started. If you’ve been reading my bookin it posts you know I’ve been setting words to … computer. My wife has seen me shuffle vast quantities of research evidence around the house over the past six years. Currently the most important stuff is in my office. I’d love to finish the book just to have my office back.
The financial point of the book for the congressional race is, once again, to raise money for me the writer, to avoid campaign finance reports. Self financing is simple. Multi-millionaires are always trying to buy their way into politics. l don’t need multi-millions. A hundred grand would do very nicely. That’s only 4,000 $25 books. In the day and age of the Internet a good product or a good scam could blow way past that modest figure. One Sid Adelson could do it all by his lonesome.
The financial point of the book is the least important to me. The congressional race isn’t that crucial either. I’ve become a gadfly. Annoying sleepy, lazy, stupid, powerful, people has gotten into my blood and taken the place of some of my old political corpuscles.
I got started on the book six years ago about the time I should have been launching a race against Congressman Jim Oberstar. I launched that race, my second against him, but I let the book research draw off too much of my steam. Almost as soon as that race was over my old colleagues on the School Board screwed the voters of Duluth to build an mammoth, unnecessary, vanity building project called the Red Plan. To top off their arrogance and ignorance they did it with a dubious legal brief that explained away the need to hold a referendum. Today we have 40 kids in many of our high school classrooms. I was right and they, the board majority, were clueless. I’ve kept busy annoying those who let this crime unfold.
Its probably fair to say that half of the people of this town would agree that my complaints should have been paid attention to. Its also probably fair to say that 20% of the people of this town loath me (among them the leaders of the Chamber of Commerce and the biggest unions) and think that if I’d kept my mouth shut everything would have worked out hunky dory. Maybe they are right but I doubt it.
If my campaign goes as I imagine it I’ll be cloistered for three and a half months writing the book and posting more excerpts to keep folks interested. I’ll continue to blog and build a website but I’ll try not to let that interfere with THE BOOK. I’m doubtful that I’ll be able to finish the book in that time but once I get the first section of 75 words or so done I may start taking pre-orders to raise money for the congressional race. Long time readers will recall I did much the same thing during the Red Plan battle. The book I threatened to write wasn’t the book I really had in my heart to work on that book by the end of the fight. I ended up returning a couple thousand dollars of pre orders to my patrons.
That’s my curse and one my wife pointed out in our one-on-one. I start a lot of things and I don’t finish them. (or win) I aim to complete this book. Its taken up six years of my life. Its too good a story. Its a story for our current age. I want to find out what those two FBI agents who visited my wife’s boss back in 1977 were after. Its about how politics, like a black hole, bends and warps the space around it. For those who cross the event horizon there is only oblivion. If you are John Edwards its a bastard child. If you are Rush Limbaugh it may be a loss of whatever sense of decency you once had leaving only outrage. If you are the Republican Party its an unwillingness to confront the cracks in your incoherent political platform and the possible self immolation of a phoenix.
At the end of my book lies the Minnesota Democratic Party’s “Minnesota Massacre.” I’ve always been drawn to the mechanics behind the curtain and the little men (and women) who huff and puff in panic and self importance. There was a whole cadre of them in the Democratic Farmer Labor Party in the 1970’s. I’d like to tell a small part of their story.
I think Santayana was on to something when he wrote: “Those who forget the past are condemned to repeat it.”