We want so badly to see these youthful Donkeys lick a little Bush.

Young Ass 

We want so badly to see these youthful Donkeys lick a little Bush.

The Strip enjoyed David Martin's description of Congressman Sam Graves and his mudslinging ways in this week's cover story, "Goon Squad" (page 13). Graves is the conservative Republican who represents North Kansas City; he made an appearance in this column several weeks ago, when the Strip questioned his grasp of biology basics. The 40-year-old farmer claims that there's no point in worrying about the Missouri River's endangered species because, he says, evolution is replacing them with new species appearing every day of the week ("Fish Story," March 18). But if the rep has a less than brilliant grasp of animal science, he's much more skilled in another area: badgering opponents in local political races.

You know a power monger is ruthless when the people in his own political party call him the dirtiest local campaigner in 50 years.

This meat patty has to hand it to the Republicans -- they rarely let their manners get in the way of a political prize. But Democrats can be such wusses. In fact, when it was trying to remember a noteworthy dirty fighter from the liberal party, the Strip had to search its memory banks all the way back to Lyndon Johnson, whose ability to round up votes among the recently deceased was legendary. For the most part, the lefty camp is more known for campaign blunders, poor organization and just bad luck.

Take two recent Kansas City examples, for instance.

Across the country, women fed up with President Bush have been holding bake sales to benefit MoveOn.org, calling their effort Bake Back the White House. Clever idea, this political porterhouse thinks. But some Kansas City women are taking the concept a step further.

This week you can buy their baked goods not at a public park or in front of a library but in the smoky confines of The Brick, one of this chuck roast's favorite downtown bars. And even better, these political hipsters have also organized a burlesque car wash for Saturday outside El Torreon, where members of the lovely Rushin' Roulettes will be wiping down automobiles in their vintage cheesecake get-ups (see Night & Day, page 20). Both of this week's events are just window dressing for the main attraction, an all-day June 27 concert at Davey's Uptown Ramblers Club. That concert promises an all-female lineup -- but we're glad to hear it won't be anything like another Lillith Fair.

All in all, it kinda puts the fun back in political fund-raising.

But this slab of quivering cow flesh can't understand why such an outfit of hip chicks would get something so important so very wrong: its own name.

When cofounder Sarah Beasley helped organize the cabal, she wanted to name it Bush Against Bush to match the group's sense of humor -- something sorely lacking from most liberal organizations. But some "older women," Beasley tells the Strip, thought the clever name might hurt the group's chances to raise money. She's too polite to name the biddies who suggested that Bush Against Bush tone down the cheek, but we figure they should have concentrated on their muffin recipes and left the PR worries to the activists with some street cred.

Now the collective has settled on the meaningless name Beauty Slays the Beast, which is so lame that folks are likely to read the group's fliers and think a freaking romance novelists' convention has come to town.

It's not the smartest move if you're trying to wake up politically apathetic young people and convince them that fighting George W.'s little war of aggression might actually be a cool scene.

But then again, going for the Republican jugular -- the party's one great weakness, after all, is that it's just not cool to be GOP -- wouldn't be Democratic.

Meanwhile, another group of area young people are showing why they're eminently qualified to be the future of the Democratic Party.

Young Democrats of America, which recruits on college campuses and is limited to lefties younger than age 36, decided at a late date to hold its annual convention not in Seattle but in Kansas City.

Becky Williams, a local member, tells this meat patty that the group has run into only one problem. The big confab is expected to attract about 500 youthful organizers from around the country from May 21 to 23. But some donkey at the national office -- namely YDA President Chris Gallaway, a KC native who ought to know better -- decided to hold the shindig at the Westin Crown Center.

Oops. Turns out the country's young, lefty firebrands booked themselves into a nonunion hotel.

Normally, the YDA, like other Democratic Party entities, hits up unions for support like an addict sucking the pipe, and it's tough to go cold turkey. But Williams says she didn't even attempt to ask for union help after Gallaway's blunder.

"We just didn't feel we could go to [the unions] and ask for money after we went with a nonunion hotel," Williams tells the Strip. "It was a simple mistake."

Williams and her Kansas City colleagues have scrambled, quickly organizing a concert at Harling's Upstairs this week to raise funds (see See/Be Seen, page 24). They'll be charging $10 to see four bands on Thursday night, hoping to raise the $2,500 they figure they'll need to bail out the convention.

The Strip was assured that the convention would go off as planned and that budding politicos from around the nation will soon arrive in the heartland to attend workshops and lectures, where they'll learn the art of campaigning.

Hey, young Dems, buy a freaking clue and learn how to play hardball while you're here. You might even invite Sam Graves over for a little consultation. He'll bring the muscle.


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