fancy farm

Sonka does Fancy Farm

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August 10, 2011
By David M. F. Schankula

You’ve probably read about Fancy Farm at his point.

No offense to any of the other pieces, but as best I could tell they all said it was a pretty ho-hum affair and then tried to make hay where they could to keep us interested because, well, it’s supposed to be interesting.

And actually, maybe it was interesting. Check out Sonka’s LEO Weekly run-down:

FANCY FARM, Ky. — There aren’t many places in America — outside of a meeting of the Westboro Baptist Church — where an eight-minute tribute to troops fighting overseas is panned as rude, offensive, cowardly and inappropriate. But Saturday afternoon at the 131st Fancy Farm picnic was one of them.

This uniquely Kentucky tradition applies three requirements to candidates who give their stump speeches to the tightly packed, vocal crowd. The official ones are to stay under your allotted time — or else get played off the stage by “Rocky Top” — and don’t curse.

The third requirement is unofficial and was put to the test this year by Democratic Gov. Steve Beshear: You must unleash a withering barrage of criticism and ridicule toward your political opponents, or else you’re ripping off the crowd.

Despite the festive atmosphere at the picnic — with kids playing games, old folks playing Bingo, and everyone in between chowing down on pork and mutton — the cramped area inside the shelter where the speeches are given is a mean, cruel place.

Whole thang’s good so read-up.


Fancy Farm’s a comin’

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July 6, 2011
By Joe Sonka

Kentucky’s perfect mix of Crossfire, pro wrestling and Hee Haw is coming up in one month, and this one’s going to be a doozy. Brammer reports that we’ll have all of the statewide candidates, Mitch McConnell, Rand Paul (ducking beer bottles) and Ed Whitfield speaking, plus “going away” speeches by Lt. Dan, Crit Luallen and yes, even Elaine Walker (who is sure to fire up the crowd…).

Organizers say that Gatewood Galbraith will speak if he has finalized his paperwork by then (which he better have, cause he’ll be a hoot). But here’s what really catches my attention:

Wilson has set aside eight minutes for any presidential candidate, but so far, none is on the agenda.

If ever there was a venue that was made for Michele Bachmann, Fancy Farm is it.

Come to Kentucky, Michele. Fancy Farm needs you.


KDP calls on Rand Paul to apologize

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August 11, 2010
By Joe Sonka

McConnell/Fletcher donor and Kentucky Democratic Party chair Daniel Logsdon is calling on Rand Paul to apologize to Fancy Farm organizers for calling them a bunch of drunken hicks, and such:

FRANKFORT – Kentucky Democratic Party Chairman Daniel Logsdon called Tuesday on Republican US Senate Candidate Rand Paul to publicly apologize to the parishioners of St. Jerome’s Catholic Church in Fancy Farm, KY after appearing on national radio and describing the church picnic as the type of venue where speakers need to worry about spectators hurling beers.

“For 130 years the people of Fancy Farm have graciously welcomed folks from all over the Commonwealth with open arms and Rand Paul thanked them by turning around and slapping them in the face on national radio,” Logsdon said. “Graves County is home to some of the kindest Kentuckians and Americans you’d ever want to meet and the Fancy Farm Picnic has been a wholesome family-friendly tradition for generations. Rand Paul owes the people of St. Jerome’s, Fancy Farm and Kentucky a public apology for his rude, backhanded and disgraceful remarks.”


“Rand Paul does not want to be part of Kentucky. He mocks Kentucky, he trashes Kentuckians on national radio and my bet is that he is jawing at the bit to get to D.C. so he can look down his nose at the people of the Commonwealth,” Logsdon said. “This is Kentucky, not Texas, we have manners. Rand better apologize quickly and hope to the heavens the people of Kentucky have shorter memories than he seems to have.”

I think this constitutes as rapid-response by the KDP, which means it just stared snowing in hell.


Rand Paul insults Fancy Farm organizers

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August 11, 2010
By Joe Sonka

We all know that Liberty Christ has a persecution complex to go along with his messiah complex, and that can sometimes get him into trouble. Like getting called out by the church that runs the Fancy Farm picnic for making up stories about them being drunken hooligans throwing shiz at him:

FRANKFORT, Ky. — Republican Senate candidate Rand Paul angered a small-town Kentucky church on Tuesday by saying politicians who attended its fundraising picnic had to worry about having beer thrown on them, a claim parishioners say isn’t true.

Paul described his view of the picnic to conservative radio personality Sean Hannity while talking about how objects are sometimes hurled at politicians.

“We were in a place called Fancy Farm, which is just a wild picnic where they boo your entire speech,” Paul said at the end of the show. “And it’s a very partisan thing, and you do worry about people throwing beer on you and throwing things at you, so it is kind of wild thing to run for office.”


Parisher Mark Wilson, who helps organize the picnic, said the comment simply wasn’t true, that beer sales aren’t even legal in the tiny farming community served by the church. He wants Paul to take it back.

“We have never known of any objects being thrown, and especially we’ve never heard of any problems with beer being thrown,” Wilson said. “It’s the perception that we just have a bunch of rowdy, beer-drinking folks there, and that’s a perception we don’t want at St. Jerome.”


Wilson said Paul’s comments give “a bad perception for our church-sponsored picnic,” adding, “I just think that statement was way off base.”

The Paul campaign didn’t immediately respond to calls and e-mails seeking comment.

Looks like Rand Paul didn’t escape Fancy Farm without a gaffe after all.

But then again, maybe Rand Paul is right? I heard that a few people threw Golden Ameros at him from the two story elevator above the speakers on Saturday.


Fancy Farm Beyond Thunderdome

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August 9, 2010
By Joe Sonka

Oh, what a weekend at Fancy Farm. Here’s the rundown, starting Friday night through the Saturday picnic.

First, to Friday night’s Marshall County Bean Supper, where Democrats hobnob, chow on bean soup and cornbread, and give me icy stares. Here’s the politifyin’ speech run down.

Todd Hollenbach was apparently incapable of making his own jokes, as he recycled Obama’s recent “D is for Drive, R is for reverse” line. He chose not to name drop Frank Simon. Crit Luallen said if we lose this race, the Tea Party will start winning everywhere, and we need to stop them right here right now. Greg Stumbo said that Rand isn’t from the Tea Party, he’s from the Me Party. He’s not for civil rights and mine safety because they don’t effect him, but he’ll gladly make a living off of Medicare. Greg waited for the next day to say this, oh lawd!:

Paul Patton said that Rand has simplistic solutions to complex problems. Pie in the sky, and such. Steve Beshear did some fancy singing and sweet talking about Mongiardo. The rest was basically a Fancy Farm speech preview. Jack Conway opened by saying that Mongiardo is a gracious man, a good decent public servant. He then went into the longest setup for a bad joke ever, involving Rocky, Apollo Creed and Mr. T, which should never ever see the light of day again. Previewed Rand’s Waffle House, saying they’ll leave him “scattered, smothered, covered and diced”, and they will “beat back intolerance and ignorance”. The rest was preview material.

Afterwords, we overheard Jack Conway telling Ryan Alessi that he wants to extend the Bush tax cuts for the top percent another 5-8 years, which would make him (if I’m not mistaken) then only prominent national Democrat to do so. Very brilliant stuff, that strategery right there. You see, now they won’t call him a tax and spender, just like the coal industry won’t go after him. Problem solved.

At the post-bean parties, the trend for the entire weekend continued, as folks would tell me “I don’t like you, because Jake Payne wrote XYZ”. Folks. Two different people, two different blogs. If you have an issue with something I write, fine, but if you have an issue with Jake, take it up with him. I’d say the worst offender of the weekend was “Harry Johnson”, a Louisville pol who berated me at the Fayette County brunch on Saturday because “Jake wrote a post on B&P saying that he was stealing Lunsford yard signs”. I explained about 20 times that Jake has never written a post on B&P and we’ve never mentioned him before, but this lunatic thought it would be a good idea to spend 10 minutes telling me this was so and that “he doesn’t like it when people make things up about him”. He didn’t seem to note the irony. Whole lotta fail.

I will say that I was pleasantly surprised that Mongiardo supporters treated me well and appear to be all-in against Rand Paul. In fact, the best conversation I probably had all weekend was with a former Mongiardo supporter. It’s even safe to say that the Mongiardo camp might have been kinder than the Conway camp. Odd, that.

The most cordial candidates to the dirty blogger rabble of the weekend were US House 2nd candidate Ed Marksberry and south Louisville State Senate candidate Marty Meyer, who get the linkage booty.

I got to the picnic around noon on Saturday and this was one of the first people I met. Abe Lincoln, who is running for local office and has some very, uh, un-Abe viewpoints:

KDP folks had Rand Paul’s Waffle House in full effect:

As well as the NeanderPaul man:

(There’s a Jack Conway body hair joke here somewhere)

Joke Klein was one of the many national media elites to visit Real America and watch how the commoner/hillbillies live:

Right before the speeches, I caught up with Trey Grayson and asked him a few questions. I asked if he would be hitting the campaign trail for Rand Paul and he said he didn’t know and hasn’t been asked to by the Paul campaign. I also asked the question that he refused to answer at the “Unity Rally” back in May, whether he agrees with Rand Paul’s statements on the Civil Rights Act and the Americans with Disabilities Act. Grayson answered that the CJ asked him the same question about the CRA, and he answered quite differently, and also that he recently spoke at an event celebrating the 20th anniversary of the ADA. He said that from what he said in those two instances, his stance was rather obvious, saying “so, no I don’t”. But he says that he is still supporting Rand.

OK, on to the speechifyin’!

For a change of pace this year, I decided to film the crowd reaction to the speeches instead of the candidate him/herself. After all, the stars of Fancy Farm are not the candidates, but all of the crazy folks who come to see them.

Steve Beshear started off, and gave a good speech, as he always does at Fancy Farm. Here’s what the Republican side thought of it:

Trey Grayson got in a good jab at Mongiardo (“at least I’m here”), but got played off with Rocky Top. Mitch McConnell did a rap about Barack Obama and Nancy Pelosi that got a bit repetitive. Oh, you should be afraid of them, and stuff. Barack Obama and Nancy Pelosi. Them. Obama/Pelosi.

Jack Conway hit a home run. Here’s the Republicans getting all riled up at it. Two things to note: 1. they just don’t have the imagination and cleverness of the Dem hecklers, and 2. Abe Lincoln booing Conway.

Rand Paul then proceeded to give a academic lecture on tax and regulation codes, as the Republicans dozed off for the first couple of minutes. He closed the lecture talking about the “exponential energy of capitalism”, which marks the first time that a Fancy Farm speaker has used the word “exponential”. A man of the people. It’s rather hard for a man to be as out of place and to leave the picnic faster than Mitch McConnell, but Rand Paul succeeded.

Afterwords, I ran into Abe Lincoln’s good buddy, who also warned us about the dangers of Barack Obama.

But driving home I was shocked to discover that not only does George wear casual clothes, he drives an import:

When even the father of our country won’t buy American, you know we’re in big trouble. It’s like a Democrat coming out for the Bush tax cuts, or something.

End scene.


Fancy Farm appetizer: Bizarro Lincoln

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August 8, 2010
By Joe Sonka

Until my full post comes up later, here’s a little taste of Fancy Farm from this weekend: Abe Lincoln coming out for states’ rights, secession rights, and Rand Paul, despite… yeah.

Much more later…


Off to Fancy Farm

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August 6, 2010
By Joe Sonka

I’ll be reporting from the circus of Fancy Farm tomorrow. And the big ole Democratic bean supper tonight (don’t sit next to The Gooch).

Be sure to follow along on the Twitter Death Robot, and the hashtag #fancyfarm.

Here’s hoping I don’t get stabbed.


Lt. Dan, Ted Williams and Hulk Hogan (UPDATE)

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August 4, 2010
By Joe Sonka

So here’s my Fancy Farm odds on what disgraced WATB with no political future Dan Mongiardo will do once he gets up to the podium. I’d say the odds of Ted Williams getting a hit in his prime are about the same as Lt. Dan doing this:

Blame it on the cre-cre-creme brulee. Or French pooooodin’, whatever.

At least we’ll never have to see his name in the election booth again. Ever.

UPDATE: Ted Williams just lined out to right field. A nice running catch.


Fancy Farm lineup

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July 28, 2010
By Joe Sonka

Larry Dale has the rundown (snark included) on who will be speaking at what will be one of the craziest Fancy Farms ever in 10 days:

Gov. Steve Beshear (D)

Lt. Gov. Daniel Mongiardo (D) (What will he have to say about Attorney General and U.S. Senate candidate Jack Conway?)

Secretary of State Trey Grayson (R)

U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell (R)

Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Jack Conway

Republican U.S. Senate candidate Rand Paul

1st District U.S. Rep. Ed Whitfield (R)

Democratic candidate for the 1st District U.S. House seat Charles Hatchett

1st District State Sen. Ken Winters (R)

2nd District State Rep. Fred Nesler (D)

Democratic candidate for the 2nd District state Senate seat Rex Smith

Republican candidate for the 2nd District state Senate seat Mike East

1st District state Rep. Steven Rudy (R)

Democratic candidadte for the 1st District state House seat Mike Lawrence

No-shows as speakers include:

State Auditor Crit Luallen (D) (Due to a wedding in her family)

State Treasurer Todd Hollenbach (D)

State Agriculture Commissioner Richie Farmer (R) (Don’t potential gubernatorial candidates always show up the year before a gubernatorial election?)

U.S. Sen. Jim Bunning (Guess he’s still afraid of the crowds.)

2nd District state Sen. Bob Leeper (I) (Don’t know what this says about his race.)

I’ll be there burning up the Twitter feed, and hopefully getting yelled at by angry politicos and not being stabbed by a Paulbot because they think I’m a shape-shifting alien of the New World Order.


Fancy Farm is on

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July 6, 2010
By Joe Sonka

Rand Paul and Jack Conway are now both confirmed guests/speakers at Fancy Farm.

Western Kentucky will be the official capitol of the Political Junkies of America a month from now on August 7th.

We’ll be there reporting from the decadent and depraved circus, stay tuned…





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